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  • giorgis 1:05 am on February 23, 2020 Permalink | Reply
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    A monster’s bounty – A weird cyberpunk fantasy adventure – S1E03 – In the cesspit 

    Brief summary: Lt. Athen Smarte is a Hunter. Solitary warriors who hunt down and dispatch warp monsters. In the last session she was ridiculed by one of her hunter peers, Taro and was forced to leave the guild’s base in a hurry, not gaining access to guild supplies for her next mission: Monster hunting in the Morikai Bread Factory.

    Playing with the oracle: Insofar I’ve been using Recluse basic Oracle with MUNE interventions (triggering at 5 sixes). Continuing from a discussion we had at Mythic GME discord, I will try out using a different die, d10 instead of d6 to reduce the chance of false presuppositions. I love those, but I feel they interfere a tad bit too much especially when coupled with the MUNE interventions.
    Also to keep up with the spirit of MUNE I will instead trigger interventions on three Yes,And oracle results. The point being when you ask something, you are biased towards it so, the oracle intervenes.

    Q: Does anything happen on the way to the factory? (Unlikely)
    A: No, and, it’s less busy than usual.

    factory

    Athen reaches the Morikai Bread Factory. A quite old building, cement and brick structure from the end of the 20th century rather than the fancier designs that followed. A bunch of workers are standing by the side of the entrance, to prevent anyone from going to work. They eye her carefully, not stopping her since they can tell from afar she isn’t one of her own. She heads to the gatehouse and presents her credentials to the security guard.
    He examines them. “Mr Morikai is expecting you. Head to the reception and the lady will guide you.”
    A few minutes later, she’s at Mr Morikai’s office, in the 2nd floor, overseeing the entire factory.

    Donjon: note: I didn’t like the Cyberpunk NPC results I got, they were all dreadlocks and mohawks, so I used the modern weird fiction ones instead: Michal has a narrow face, with short silver hair and narrow gray eyes. He wears a dark suit and a leather trenchcoat. Michal is kind and cultured.

    Morikai

    Michal Morikai, the owner of the corporation is a man with a narrow face, with short silver hair and narrow gray eyes. He wears a dark suit. He turns to Athen.
    “Ms Smarte. You need to deal with it quickly. Something in the factory is killing my workers, and they are not willing to go back in until it’s dealt with. I’ve called upon the guild, so your reward will be according to the guild’s charter.
    Athen realized that this man had money to spend. Guild fees meant he had paid in advance. If Athen would find the monster, she would be paid according to its threat level. If she found nothing and deemed the call a fluke, she would still be paid, for her time. But if she called it off and there was a true monster that could cost her, her guild status. She could never be a hunter again.
    This way people believed in the Hunters. If they declared a location clear. Then so it was.
    Athen nodded. “I’ll need some information to work with. How many workers have vanished. Were they alone at the time? What was their build? Where and at what time of the day. Then I’ll need to inspect those locations.” She said to Morikai.

    I decide that since there is a quite possible threat, Morikai won’t be without a security guard or bodyguard, he would be the person that has this information.
    Let’s ask Donjon: German Kennet: Male Soldier. German is muscular, with short black hair and gray eyes. He wears a grey suit and glasses with gold rims. German is quick-witted and pessimistic.

    “My head of security, Mr. Kennet has all the information in the datapad.” As Morikai responds, the tough, muscular man besides him hands over a datapad to Athen.
    “Do you need anything further? I suggest you don’t waste any time speaking to the workers. They are striking and already costing me more than your fee.” He adds.
    Athen has gotten the hint. “No sir. I will peruse the data and head off. Just make sure there’s no one around when I start the hunt. I don’t want people killed in the crossfire.”
    “I will pass the word.” Morikai replies.
    “Thank you.” Says Athen and starts reading on the data.

    Q: How many people went missing?
    A: I will roll 1d100 to determine the magnitude: 17: Not many. So I roll 1d2+1: 2.

    I will get their info from Donjon.

    Lindsy Sarratt: Female Electrical Engineer. Str 9, Con 8, Siz 9, Int 6, Pow 7, Dex 14, App 11, Edu 13, San 35. Lindsy has a round face, with auburn hair and amber eyes. She wears a designer skirt and blouse and cloche hat. Lindsy is searching for her lost cat.

    Delila Calder: Female Mechanic. Str 12, Con 12, Siz 16, Int 11, Pow 11, Dex 11, App 13, Edu 12, San 55. Delila is willowy, with blonde hair and green eyes. She wears casual clothing and cloche hat.

    I kept their stats intentionally so that I can have a 3d6 comparison. Lindsy was a less than average build and strength, engineer. I will take the input about the lost cat as an event to use here. Maybe she had a pet cat at the factory which went missing and she got lost while searching for it. Delila was much bigger though, not as weak as her coworker that went missing.
    I am aware that in none of the generated results was a ‘factory worker’ or similar occupation, but nevertheless I will keep the results as generated because the match the story. Both those women were technical workers. Their jobs were not in the main floor where there are many eyes, but in the technical floor and engineering were usually they work alone.

    Q: Is the technical floor and the engineering two separate locations?
    A: Yes
    Q: Does the factory operate at night? (Unlikely)
    A: Yes, And it operates at 24/7. (Intervention Count – IC: 1)
    Q: On which watch did they went missing?
    A: Lindsy went missing on the 2nd watch (4-8 am) and Delila on the 4th watch (4-8 pm).
    Q: Are the technical floor and the engineering connected?
    A: No, and one to go from one place or the other would have to go outside of the main building.

    Athen read the information in the datapad. Whatever went after the two workers attacked when alone. Also size was not an issue since, Delila is a heavyset woman. She read about the rumours that the Colonel described to her over the phone, armed her sidearm and went for the engineering first. Choosing to follow the timeline of the events.

    So, I need to define current time. We have established it’s still daytime, so I presume it’s sometime after noon. I roll: It’s 4 pm.

    Athen: Notice: Success.
    Q: Does she find something?
    A: False presupposition. It’s not really that she found something, she thinks she found something but it’s the cat.

    Athen takes a good look around, flashing her torch to all kinds of dark places, her pistol aiming at the same time, when she catches movement. Something screeches and hisses at her and jumps towards her flying over her. She holds on to her nerves and manages not to shoot the cat. She sighs and continues her search, but there is nothing more to be found.
    She walks back to the main building and takes the side entrance to the technical floor.

    Athen: Notice: Success.
    Q: Does she find something? (likely)
    A: Yes, and it belongs to the missing worker. (IC: 2)
    Q: Does it belong to Delila? (likely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Is it a toolbag with her initials on? (likely)
    A: No
    Q: Is it a flashlight with her initials on?
    A: Yes

    Athen searches among the vents and hoods and pipelines of the technical floor. There’s a lot of hiding places, but something catches her glimpse. It’s a flashslight. She picks it up, and it has engraved “DC” on the side. ‘So Delila was last seen here’ Athen thinks. She looks up and down for any vantage points or escape routes for any creature.

    Q: Is there any opening nearby?
    A: False presupposition. Athen can’t figure it out. There are so many different shapes of tubes and vents that she can’t tell which one is a route and which one isn’t.

    With her only clue in the technical floor, Athen decides to go for a typical ambush. She sets up several noise traps (essentially tin cans on a string) in any possible locations that she can find, and then she puts a bait noise trap in a central location that she can oversee. She will trigger the last trap once she is ready.

    Athen: Survival: Success. She puts the traps.
    Athen: Stealth: Success. She hides in a corner.
    Athen: Notice: Success+. She has excellent oversight.

    Q: Does anything arrive in the next watch?
    A: False presupposition. Okay seriously. I’m starting to have trouble answering false presuppositions on generic questions. But here’s the epiphany. Something doesn’t arrive, but something flees!

    Athen takes her time to set up the traps, and finally under a perfect cover point, she triggers the bait trap. Essentially a recorder playing the sound of a human child crying. She then hears the sound of rattling tin cans, and awaits a little longer. But nothing comes. After a certain amount of time passes, she inspects her traps and finds that an the cans to an exit have all been rattled aside. Something was there with her the entire time, and fled the moment she set her ambush.
    She curses at the lost opportunity and follows the exit to see if she can get a trail.

    Athen: Survival (-2): Failure. The hard brick and stone don’t allow for much tracking.
    Athen: Notice: Success++
    Q: Does she find anything in relation to the escaped presence? (Likely since she had two raises)
    A: Yes, and it will help her identify the presence. (IC: 3! Intervention!)
    I will draw two GMA cards to see what she has uncovered, and then roll for the intervention.
    The two sensory snippets that I find most fitting are related to smell. ‘Rancid oil’ and ‘Frying sausage’, but I will expand on them.
    Now for the intervention.
    MUNE: Intervention: Entity negative.
    Q: Is it Athen?
    A: No, so it must be the presence. On its quick way out, it made some noise and spilled some of its food, essentially creating a trail to be followed.
    Note: As you may have gathered, I’m not a big fan of metagaming so I prefer to keep results to entities on the scene. Otherwise I could have deemed that another worker had been attacked or whatever.

    As she opens the door, the smell of rancid oil and fried meat fills her nostrils. A long time ago she might have hoped. But now, she’s certain that’s a monster’s human meal that she smelled. She hears a loud rattle and runs off after the noise. A trail of oily footsteps makes for an easy tracking.

    I will draw a GMA card to get information about where does this trail lead. To the roof, to another room, or to the underground?
    A: An arrow pointing right down. So it’s underground.

    Q: Is it the sewers?
    A: No, but, its the cesspit.

    Athen runs after the trail on a circular staircase, so tight that she barely fits, and reaches the ground floor. The sewer grate has been moved aside but not closed back. So whatever she hunts, must be close. The stench fills her. Old sewage and disposal, mixed with fried human meat. She considers she has to open the flashlight, betraying her position, and wishes once more she had those IRVPs.

    So, since there is fried oil, there’s a good chance there is a fire, which could be a source of light.

    Q: Is there a fire lit with adequate light?
    A: False presupposition. The creature didn’t use a fire to fry the meat, but electric machinery. They’re sentient and used human tools as they found them, drawing power from the grid.

    Stealth is out of the question, so I will ask what does she see with the flashlight before most probably switching to combat.

    Q: Is it humanoid creatures? (likely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Is it goblins?
    A: False presupposition. Huh. Okay so the creatures are humanoids but they aren’t in the cesspit. That’s why there is no light.

    Athen takes a deep breath and lights up the flashlight aiming with her pistol at the same time.
    There is a rusty ladder heading down to the bottom of the cesspit.

    Based on what I know so far I make some decisions. I was considering the option of some amphibian humanoids but I doubt they would eat fried meat. Hence the entrance to their lair should be above the surface of water.

    Athen sees no one there. She flashes her light all over the place and doesn’t get any sign of movement. Looking closer, she can see that the cesspit bottom has only an inch or two of sewage and in the other end of the wall there is a hole large enough for a person to come through.
    She holsters her sidearm, clenches her flashlight by her teeth, and starts to descend the ladder.

    Athen: Athletics: Success.

    Athen descends the ladder without much effort, and takes a peek into the hole, her flashlight turned off.

    Q: Is there any light coming from the hole?
    A: Yes, but it’s dim. So either the light is far away or the source isn’t strong enough.
    Q: Is there a passageway or a full room?
    A: Passageway.

    Athen: Stealth: Success+. That’s good whatever creature is at the end of the passageway won’t probably notice her.
    I’ll ask the Oracle if there are any traps, since Athen didn’t bother to check (not that she could with a turned off flashlight). I’ll set it to unlikely considering the difficulty of access.
    Q: Are there any traps? (Unlikely)
    A: No, and it’s a quite easy trek to the end of the passage.

    Q: How many goblins are there?
    A: 76: A lot. 1d6+2: 3 Goblins.
    Q: Are both workers dead?
    A: No. Delila is still alive. Tied up in the corner.

    Athen makes out the snickering laughter of humanoids as she draws closer. She knows this sound all too well. It’s those evil short greenskins. Some call them little orcs, some call them goblins. From the shadows she takes a better look.
    The room looks like a crumbling basement from a nearby building. She’s no longer under the bread factory. In the middle of the room there is a fire burning and a cut off human hand probably belonging to Lindsy is fried on a pan. Tied up in a far corner is Delila.
    Athen can’t tell if she’s alive, dead or unconscious.
    One of the goblins is stirring up the others. She doesn’t know Orc-tongue but she can understand enough to know it’s briefing its brethren on her pursuit. She has to move fast. She picks a target and blasts it off out of the shadows.

    Goblins: Notice (vs Athen’s Stealth): Failure, Failure, Failure
    So Athen has a free round. She double taps at the nearest goblin. The one who stirs up the rest and has its back turned to her.

    Surprise Round:
    Athen: Shooting: Hit+: Damage: Shaken

    Initiative: Athen: 8♠️, Goblins: Q♣️
    Goblin1: Spirit: Success
    Goblin2: Draws dagger and runs towards Athen: Distance reduced to 3.
    Goblin3: Draws dagger and runs towards Athen: Distance reduces to 4.
    Athen double taps Goblin2: Hit+: Dead

    Initiative: Athen: A♥️, Goblins: 5♥️
    Athen double taps Goblin3: Hit: Dead.
    Goblin1: Spirit: Failure: It tries to flee.
    Q: Is there another entrance to the room?
    A: False presupposition. The goblin starts to climb up the rubble to get to the opening from the ceiling.
    Goblin: Athletics: Success

    Initiative: Athen: 7♣️, Goblin: A♣️
    Goblin: Athletics: Failure
    Athen: Shoots and reloads: Shooting: Hit: Shaken. The goblin falls to the ground.

    Initiative: Athen: 6♦️, Goblin: 5♠️
    Athen double taps at the goblin: Hit: Dead.

    The Hunter shoots off twice at one of the goblins, but she barely hits it, the bullet going through and through its shoulder.
    It stands motionless crying out, trying to shake off the pain as it’s two brethren draw serrated blades and with a nasty grin on their face, they charge at Athen.
    Emotionless, she aims at each of them, sending them to oblivion with a two bullets lodged in them each of their heads.
    The last goblin cries out under the echo of the shots in the closed room and starts frantically trying to escape. It climbs the rubble to the ceiling too where an opening is barely visible, but a few steps before the top, it miscalculates and stops for a moment in order not to lose its balance.
    That’s all Athen needed. With another shot, she hits its finger and it loses its grip and falls to the floor. Before it can react, Athen has reloaded, and shoots twice, finishing it off in cold blood.

    Regarding Delila, I will roll to see if she can move: I will give her a d8, due to her size: Vigor: Failure. She’s dead.

    Athen rushes to Delila, but she finds that there’s no pulse. She probably died from the initial wounds the goblins inflicted when they captured her.
    She cuts off the three goblin heads, ties them in a rope and heads back out.


    “Those stinking maggots killed my workers? The testimonies I’ve heard don’t match the descriptions.” Morikai says to Athen.
    “They’re nasty and like to play games in the shadows. Making you think there’s more of them or that they’re bigger. Call a cleanup crew for the corpses. Their lair was connected to the cesspit of the factory. It’s best if the families don’t see them in this state.” Athen responds bluntly.
    “I will, Hunter. Thank you. The payment will be performed through the guild. You gave immediate results and I will relay this. Is there anything else I can do for you?” Morikai asks.
    “Do you have a portable freezer? I don’t want my trophies ruined.” She smirks.
    “German.” He calls to his bodyguard. “Arrange it.”


    Athen is back to her appartment and she can’t catch an easy sleep. The sight of death didn’t flinch her, she’s used to it. She keeps wondering how did three goblins manage to come in the city. Was it strugglers or is there something hiding behind it?


    Session Summary

    I had a rough time with all those false presuppositions, though I believe that the twists that derive when done correctly outweigh the trouble.
    In the end I kind of eyeballed it that they were goblins. Scaring the workers and picking them off one by one.
    I’m not quite certain that the challenge was up to par with Athen’s skills but in solo play there isn’t much leeway. If I miscalculate the balance it could mean quick character death.
    This session felt like a one shot. I am itching to see if the various sessions will eventually connect into a campaign, as I’m worried this might not happen.
    Finally I’m giving Athen an advancement. I will decide what in the next session.

     
  • giorgis 9:03 pm on February 19, 2020 Permalink | Reply
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    A dogfighting experiment 

    Star Wars D6 Dogfighting with Hexflowers Take One

    Intro

    Whenever I run solo space combat in theater of the mind or map grid I found myself and the system lacking.
    I could not beat myself doing anything more than rush to enemy while the enemy rushed to me, and perform bootlegger turns when we passed each other…hardly satisfying.
    I need something else, to provide functionality, food for narrative, and a level of realism, and most of all enjoyable.

    Purpose

    The purpose of this experiment is to run dogfights in theater of the mind emulating a 3D environment.

    Scope

    Using the It came from above hex flower engine as a basis upon which to set a dogfighting framework.

    Prerequisites

    I’m using a success count system instead of standard D6 addition of dice vs target number.

    Dice Definitions

    Wild Die

    The Wild Die succeeds on a 3+, explodes on a 6, and generates a mishap on a roll of 1.
    All rolls except defense rolls, have a Wild Die, which replaces a Full Die. It is denoted as W.

    Full Die

    The Full Die is the most common die roll. It succeeds on 3+. It is denoted as F.

    Note: Wild Dice and Full Dice together are denoted as D.

    Half Die

    The Half Die has half the success chance of a Full Die. It succeeds on 5+. It is denoted as +2 or H.

    Quarter Die

    The Quarter Die has a quarter chance of success of a Full Die. It succeeds on 6 only. It is denoted as +1 or Q.

    Example

    A character with 2D+2, rolls one Wild Die, one Full Die and one Half Die

    Procedure

    1. Initialization phase. Roll Initiative. This has importance only in terms of ‘who shoots first’. Determine starting distance based on circumstances. In a standard dogfight where both combatants are aware of the imminent battle, a good starting distance is the lowest sensors Scan distance of the two crafts.
    2. Declaration phase. Declare actions. Multiple actions incur penalties according to game system. Each combatant chooses an opponent. Squadrons can be considered a single unit in terms of maneuver, led by the relative command skill of their commander.
    3. Piloting phase. Roll the piloting skill of each combatant, modified by their spacecraft’s maneuverability. Count each Piloting Success. Depending on the space ‘terrain’ (e.g. asteroids) you may need to assign one or more piloting dice to evading obstacles or risk a collision. The successes that remain can be used for evasion or orientation.
    4. Orientation phase. Roll 2d6 without wild die on the HFGE. If you wish you may spend Piloting Successes from step 2 to modify the orientation by one hex face per success spent.
      Attacking craft roll as Top Down attackers. Fleeing craft roll as Bottom Feeders.
    5. Movement phase. Roll the crafts movement dice (use 1ed or 2ed conversion). Deduct the results from the distance if the combatant has a front orientation, or add it if it has a rear orientation. Reduce the moved distance by a factor of two for each additional axis offset.
    6. Support actions phase. Running jammers, communications, shields, or whatever else.
    7. Gunnery phase. If the combatant has weapons facing in the direction of his orientation, then they can shoot if they declared so in the declaration phase. Shooting happens in the order of the initiative.
      Shooting difficulty is distance OR dodge (remaining piloting successes), whichever is greater.

    Note: For the center hex (#19), the combatant is free to choose front or rear orientation.

    Example #1

    A-Wing vs TIE fighter, clear space, standard dogfight.

    1. Initialization phase.
      Starting distance: 40 space units.
      Initiative.
      A-Wing: 3D: 4
      TIE: 3D: 0

    Turn 1.

    1. Declaration phase.
      A-Wing: -2D (Piloting, Shields, Gunnery).
      TIE: -1D (Piloting, Gunnery).
    2. Piloting phase.
      A-Wing: 7D: 3.
      TIE: 5D+1: 6.
    3. Orientation phase.
      A-Wing: 9: 6 (Front right flank and above). Spend one Piloting Success to move to 4 (Front right flank and level).
      TIE: 7: 2 (Front and above).
    4. Movement phase.
      A-Wing: 6D: 22. One axis offset (right flank).
      TIE: 5D: 10. One axis offset (above).
      Distance: 40-22/2-10/2 = 24.
    5. Support actions phase.
      A-Wing: Shields: 1D+1: 3 successes, they choose Front, Rear and Right shields.
    6. Gunnery phase.
      A-Wing: 5D+2: 3/6: Miss.
      TIE: 5D: 5/4: Hit: Damage: 5D/3D+2: 1/1: Shields blown (-1D).

    The A-Wing and TIE fighter target each other and approach at full speed. Each performs a large turn to try to get the advantage and they let off a burst of laser shots at each other. The TIE pilot manages to evade the A-Wing approaching from below and hits it from the right flank, blasting its shields.

    Turn 2.

    1. Declaration phase.
      A-Wing: -1D (Piloting, Gunnery).
      TIE: -1D (Piloting, Gunnery).
    2. Piloting phase.
      A-Wing: 8D: 6.
      TIE: 5D+1: 4.
    3. Orientation phase.
      A-Wing: 3: 19 (Front).
      TIE: 7: 12 (Rear and below). Spend 2 Piloting Successes to move to 3 (Front and below).
    4. Movement phase.
      A-Wing: 6D: 21. No axis offset.
      TIE: 5D: 22. One axis offset (below).
      Distance: 24-21-22/2 = -14. (14).
    5. Support actions phase.
      N/A.
    6. Gunnery phase.
      A-Wing: 6D+2: 4/4: Hit: Damage:
      5D/2D: 5/1: Destroyed.

    Now the A-Wing pilot no longer is distracted by trying to activate the shields and focuses on the dogfight. He spirals the star fighter and gets on the TIE fighter’s tail, who has to perform a complete loop and rotation to get the A-wing back on his sights. Before he has a chance to open fire, a salvo from the A-Wing obliterates the TIE fighter.


    Summary and Lessons learned:
    The A-Wing with superior pilots and technology won the dogfight, but easily, they could have lost.
    Now I’m not certain about the piloting success economy. I will be watching it closely.
    One thing that needs changing is the shooting arcs. Right now if you have something in Front you can shoot it with Front Weapons even if it’s offset in two axes (e.g Front Right Flank and Below). I intend to change this depending on distance. On long range you can shoot with two axes offset. On medium range you can shoot with one axis offset and on short range you can shoot only on direct (no offset).
    I would love to have narrative distance ranges and not be based on space units. It’s kind of weird how space combat ranges are implemented in RAW. I mean weapon ranges are impacting accuracy directly, as does fire control. Why have two different mechanics for the same thing? I have some thoughts in mind regarding this, regarding keeping only a maximum range per weapon type and have fixed penalties based on distance.
    Another thought that came to mind is when you get a negative distance, which means one opponent passed over the other, maybe there’s a collision chance. Or maybe you could use some piloting successes to reduce the ship speed. Or maybe one could choose any speed rating between 1D and max speed. I’m still thinking about and will playtest some variants.
    Finally I am still missing some narrative. I am thinking of implementing some maneuvers to be bought with piloting successes which will give specific effects.

    Star Wars D6 Dogfighting with Hexflowers Take Two

    Updated Rules:
    1. Shooting arc is limited to axis offset. Long range can be offset by two additional axes, medium can be offset by one axis, and close is direct shots only. Turrets are an exception. They can shoot direct on all their relative axes. Common sense applies.
    2. Distances are now
    Close (1-7)
    Short (8-15)
    Medium (16-30)
    Long (31-45)
    Far (46-60)
    Distant (61-75)
    Extreme (76-100)
    A weapon emplacement can shoot at the maximum distance range it has, but all suffer the same distance penalties. So, a Laser Cannon (max range 25, Medium) that shoots a target at Short range has the same chance to hit as a Missile (max range 15, Short).
    3. Speed is rolled as successes counts. Every additional axis offset reduces the maximum dice by one step (Full to Half to Quarter). Piloting Succeses can be assigned to increase the dice rolled for speed. Approaching combatants reduce the distance by the number of successes, otherwise the distance is increased or decreased according to the differences.
    Distance can’t be less than Close. If distance is greater than Extreme, then combat is over.
    3. Initiative needs to be rerolled every Turn. Mainly for fun factor, and because dogfighting is more abstract than grid combat. You have advantage one turn, you lose it the next.

    Additional Rules:

    1. Squadrons are lead by a squad leader. The leader uses the Command skill. Multiple action penalties apply normally. The Command difficulty is as per the skill. Any successfully commanded squaddies benefit from the combined action bonus dice to their piloting skills.
      The command test is rolled at the start of the piloting phase.
    2. Passive (Non-dogfighting) targets must roll 2d6 so that their targeter can identify their approach (for shield coverage, speed and distance, etc). The targeter can opt to spend their own piloting successes to change their target’s orientation (they pilot their craft in a way to get a specific approach).
      An example would be a squadron of TIE Bombers heading for a Corellian Corvette that are intercepted by A-Wings. If the TIE Bombers opt to continue towards the corvette, then they are considered passive targets for the A-Wings in terms of orientation. Their speed and dodge values on their dogfighting against the corvette is used against the A-Wings normally.
    3. Formations. Squadrons can fly in formations deducting 1D from Piloting and Speed, and rolling as one the speed and orientation.

    Example #2

    I’ll implement all the rules here, it’s going to be a complicated fight.

    2 Y-Wings are heading after a Lambda-class shuttle carrying a Rebel traitor. The shuttle runs on skeleton crew. 2 TIE Fighters are escorting the shuttle. Each squadron has a leader with a command of 4D.

    1. Initialization phase.
      Starting distance: Long.

    Turn 1.
    Rebels: Initiative: 0
    Imperials: Initiative: 0
    Concurrent events.

    1. Declaration phase.
      Y-Wing Leader: -2D (Command, Shields, Piloting), Co-Pilot: – (Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      Y-Wing Wingman -1D (Shields, Piloting), Co-Pilot: – (Gunnery)
      TIE Leader: -2D (Command, Piloting, Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      TIE Wingman: -1D (Piloting, Gunnery)
      Lambda Shuttle: -2D (Skeleton, Piloting), Bottom Feeder
    2. Piloting phase.
      Y-Wing Command: 1/2: Failure.
      TIE Command: 1/2: Failure.
      Y-Wing L: 3D+2: 3.
      Y-Wing W: 4D+2: 4.
      TIE L: 4D: 3.
      TIE W: 4D+1: 3.
      Lambda: 3D: 3.
    3. Orientation phase.
      Y-Wings: 11: 4 (Front right flank and level).
      TIEs: 6: 2 (Front & Above).
      Lambda: 10: 13 (Back left flank and level).
      Y-Wing Passive vs TIE: 8: 4 (Front right flank and level).
    4. Movement phase.
      Y-Wings will add 2 to speed.
      Y-Wings: 4D+2: Halved: 1.
      TIEs: 4D: Halved: 2.
      Lambda: 2D+2: Halved: 2.
      Distances of Y-Wings to TIEs: Close.
      Distances of Y-Wings to Lambda: Far.
    5. Support phase.
      Y-Wing L: Shields: 1D: 1: Front shields.
      Y-Wing W: Shields: 2D: 1: Front shields.
    6. Gunnery Phase.
      TIEs are too close to get a clear shot.
      Y-Wing L Turret shoots at TIE: 7D+1: 3/5: Miss.
      Y-Wing W Turret shoots at TIE: 7D+1: 3/5: Miss.

    Turn 2.
    Rebels: Initiative: 3
    Imperials: Initiative: 1

    1. Declaration phase.
      Y-Wing Leader: -1D (Command, Piloting), Co-Pilot: – (Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      Y-Wing Wingman -1D (Gunnery, Piloting), Co-Pilot: – (Gunnery)
      TIE Leader: -2D (Command, Piloting, Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      TIE Wingman: -1D (Piloting, Gunnery)
      Lambda Shuttle: -3D (Skeleton, Shields, Piloting), Bottom Feeder
    2. Piloting phase.
      Y-Wing Command: 2/2: Success.
      TIE Command: 1/2: Failure.
      Y-Wing L: 5D+2: 4.
      Y-Wing W: 5D+2: 4.
      TIE L: 4D: 2.
      TIE W: 4D+1: 7.
      Lambda: 3D: 3.
    3. Orientation phase.
      Y-Wings: 11: 9 (Back right flank and below). They spend 3 to move to 1 (Front and level).
      TIEs: 5: 6 (Front right flank and below). They spend 2 to move to 1 (Front and level).
      Lambda: 9: 14 (Back left flank and above).
      Y-Wing Passive vs TIE: 10: 9 (Back right flank and below).
    4. Movement phase.
      Y-Wings spend 1 to increase speed.
      Y-Wings: 4D+2: 4: vs TIE Quartered: 1.
      TIEs: 5D: 3.
      Lambda: 2D+2: Quartered: 0.
      Distances of Y-Wings to TIEs: Close.
      Distances of Y-Wings to Lambda: Close.
    5. Support phase.
      Lambda: Shields: 1D: 1: Rear Shields.
    6. Gunnery Phase.
      Y-Wing L Turret shoots at Lambda: 7D+1: 6/3: Hit: 4D/4D: 3/2: 2 Controls Ionized.
      Y-Wing W Turret shoots at Lambda: 7D+1: 4/3: Hit: 4D/4D: 3/1: 3 Controls Ionized. Ship Disabled.
      Y-Wing W Lasers shoot at Lambda: 5D+1: 2/3: Miss.
      TIE L shoots at Y-Wing L: 4D: 2/1: Hit: 5D/4D: 4/3: Lightly Damaged: Ship Loses 1D speed.
      TIE W shoots at Y-Wing W: 5D: 3/1: Hit: 5D/4D: 4/0: Destroyed

    Turn 3.
    Rebels: Initiative: 1
    Imperials: Initiative: 2

    1. Declaration phase.
      Y-Wing Leader: -1D (Gunnery, Piloting), Co-Pilot: – (Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      TIE Leader: -2D (Command, Piloting, Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      TIE Wingman: -1D (Piloting, Gunnery)
    2. Piloting phase.
      TIE Command: 2/2: Success.
      Y-Wing L: 5D+2: 4.
      TIE L: 5D: 2.
      TIE W: 5D+1: 2.
    3. Orientation phase.
      Y-Wing L: 8: 5 (Front right flank and above). They spend 2 to move to 19 (Front and level).
      TIEs: 7: 2 (Front and above).
    4. Movement phase.
      Y-Wing L: 2D+2: 0.
      TIEs: 4D: 3.
      Distances of Y-Wings to TIEs: Close.
    5. Support phase.
      N/A.
    6. Gunnery Phase.
      TIEs are too close and offset and can’t shoot.
      Y-Wing L Turret shoots at TIE L: 7D+1: 4/2: Hit: 4D/2D: 3/2: 2 Controls Ionized.
      Y-Wing L Lasers shoot at TIE W: 5D+1: 3/1: Hit: 5D/2D: 4/1: Severely Damaged: Structural Damage, will disintegrate in 1D rounds.

    Turn 4.
    Rebels: Initiative: 3
    Imperials: Initiative: 3

    1. Declaration phase.
      Y-Wing Leader: -1D (Gunnery, Piloting), Co-Pilot: – (Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      TIE Leader: Controls Ionized for 4 rounds.
    2. Piloting phase.
      Y-Wing L: 5D+2: 4.
    3. Orientation phase.
      Y-Wing L: 12: 10 (Rear and level). They spend 3 to move to 1 (Front and level).
      TIEs: 8: 18 (Front left flank and below).
    4. Movement phase.
      Y-Wing L: 2D+2: 1.
      TIE: 4D: 2.
      Distances of Y-Wings to TIEs: Close.
    5. Support phase.
      N/A.
    6. Gunnery Phase.
      Y-Wing L Turret shoots at TIE L: 7D+1: 6/1: Hit: 4D/2D: 1/0: 2 Controls Ionized.
      Y-Wing L Lasers shoot at TIE L: 5D+1: 5/1: Hit: 5D/2D: 3/1: Heavily Damaged: -2D Moves.

    Turn 5.
    Rebels: Initiative: 3
    Imperials: Initiative: 2

    1. Declaration phase.
      Y-Wing Leader: -1D (Gunnery, Piloting), Co-Pilot: – (Gunnery), Top Down Attacker
      TIE Leader: Controls Ionized for 7 rounds.
    2. Piloting phase.
      Y-Wing L: 5D+2: 6.
    3. Orientation phase.
      Y-Wing L: 6: 3 (Front and above). They spend 3 to move to 1 (Front and level).
      TIEs: 9: 3 (Front and below).
    4. Movement phase.
      Y-Wing L: 2D+2: 0.
      TIE: 5D: 3.
      Distances of Y-Wings to TIEs: Close.
    5. Support phase.
      N/A.
    6. Gunnery Phase.
      Y-Wing L Turret shoots at TIE L: 7D+1: 7/1: Hit: 4D/2D: 2/0: 3 Controls Ionized: ship is disabled.
      Y-Wing L Lasers shoot at TIE L: 5D+1: 5/1: Hit: 5D/2D: 1/2: No damage

    Summary and Lessons learned: Initially I thought I overdid it. Too complicated. But then it struck me. I run a combat with 5 spacecrafts in 3 groups!
    I mean this would have taken me ages to work out otherwise.
    Okay at certain points it felt too wargamey, and maybe I need to take a look at 1ed starship combat rules. Maybe there’s something that would speed things up.
    Overall I’m quite content with the results for now, and will keep that in mind for my next Star Wars D6 game.

     
  • giorgis 11:29 pm on February 12, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    A monster’s bounty – A weird cyberpunk fantasy adventure – S1E02 Patience lost 

    Brief summary: Lt. Athen Smarte is a Hunter. Solitary warriors who hunt down and dispatch warp monsters. In last session she got a missing person’s report and when she investigated the last known whereabouts she came face to face with a Chimaera. A fire breathing winged goat with the head of a lion and a tail that ends in a dragon head. In the fight, she managed to exterminate it. As a side note she also came upon a drug exchange which lead to a shootout with the criminals.

    The following threads are currently active:

    1. Monster hunting
    2. Resupply/acquire new gear
    3. Monster part vendor
    4. Drug exchange shootout

    Also I am following SWADE’s advancement rules where there is no XP count, but one Advance per session. Athen gains an Advance. She will gain the Extraction edge. This will give her the option to disengage from melee without triggering an attack of opportunity.

    Now I will focus out during the start of this session, running events as downtime.
    For that I will be using several tools and rules. Quick Encounters and Interludes from SWADE, Waylays from BOLD and will start using the Background Surprise Events Oracle to see if any background events have triggered.
    Time unit will be 24 hours.

    I will give Athen 1 week of downtime before I switch back to adventure time.


    April 12th
    Find Merlin and try to sell him monster parts
    Networking (Persuasion): Failure
    Q: Does she find Merlin?
    A: Yes
    Q: Are the parts spoiled?
    A: Yes, and they’re not usable at all

    Athen heads to Gustav’s, the bar down the corner. In her backpack, are the chimaera remains. She looks around and in the corner she notices Merlin.
    She walks up to his table. He seems a bit surprised to see her. “Come in the back alley, I’ve got something for you.” She says and walks out the service entrance of the bar. She waits by a huge dumpster for less than a minute, and the smuggler joins her.
    “So you’ve considered my offer? got something for me?” He asks eagerly.
    She turns her backpack upside down, and the chimaeras head and tail come tumbling down… along with a terrible stench.
    Merlin is taken aback. “What sort of beast did you…! Oh such a pity. It’s rotten. The warp energies got to it. Can’t do much good with these darling, but appreciate the effort. Next time use a lead lined iso bag. Reduces the impact of warp radiation and environment conditions.”
    Athen sighs. “Next time give me the heads up before I put my ass on the line.” She complains.
    “Hey, you never asked.” He talks back.
    She doesn’t answer. She knows when she’s wrong. She drops the head and tail in the dumpster and heads back home.

    April 13th
    Interlude: Downtime: Diamonds
    She studies or works on an object of some sort.
    Cleans up the pistol, readies it, repairs the armor.

    The next day Athen decides to stay home and do some maintenance.
    She takes apart her firearm, cleans it up thoroughly and puts it back together. She doesn’t want a weapon jam, and she already emptied a score of bullets on that beast. There’s gunpowder residue all around the barrel and shooting mechanism.
    After this is done, she takes a good look at her vest. It saved her life. Thankfully the dragon bite didn’t do any permanent damage to it, and with some patching her vest is back in top shape.

    April 14th
    Ressuply ammo
    Q: Is it illegal?
    A: No, but restricted
    Networking (Persuasion): Failure
    Her permit has expired
    Time for new permit: Long. 1 month.

    During maintenance, Athen did an ammo count. It didn’t take long to count three bullets. She headed off to the nearest firearms store.
    When her turn is up, she goes to the cashier. “50 .45 slugs.” She tells him.
    He asks for her permit.
    “Lieutenant, your permit has expired. You need to apply for a renewal.” He notifies her.
    ‘Crap.’ She thought. When she was in service, she didn’t have to go through all the bureaucratic loops. She fills out her papers once more, and gives them to the employee.
    “How long?” She asks.
    “4 weeks, give or take.” He answers.
    She curses her lack of punctuality and heads back.

    April 15th
    Resupply ammo (other sources)
    Networking (Persuasion): Success
    Q: Does she find them from Merlin?
    A: Yes, and he’s selling them at market price to her
    She buys d6 worth of clips.

    Athen isn’t going to sit tight and wait one month to get bullets. Instead, she goes back to Merlin.
    “You’re becoming a regular darling!” He smiles.
    “Cut the crap Merlin. I need bullets. .45 pistol.” She tells him.
    “Alright. Since I want us to get along in good terms, as a sign of goodwill, I’m going to give them to you at retail price and not street price.” He tells her.
    “That’s better.” She smiles back, and restocks, paying in cold hard cash.

    April 16th
    Interlude: Downtime: Spades
    She spends some time in quiet contemplation

    With all that’s transpire in the last few days, Athen decides to spend the day at home.
    She doesn’t go out at all and spends time thinking about the shootout.
    ‘Who was this man?’ She’s certain she has seen his face somewhere. Her current theory is that he was involved in the drug exchange either as a client or as an intermediary.
    Then she contemplated on the chimera she faced. She wonders if she should look for Svita. Maybe there’s more to it. But she quickly chases away that though. She knows better than to hope. Svita became a quick meal to the chimera, and most probably not the only one.

    April 17th
    Gather information about drug exchange shootout
    Research (-2): Success
    Did the mooks in the station survive?
    Vigor: 1 Success, 1 Failure.
    Q: Did she hear about it in the news?
    A: Yes
    Q: Did she find any information about the reputable servant?
    A: No, it was about the gang
    I will roll on UNE for gang power level: 77: Comparable
    Intervention: Regress plot
    She can’t find out anything more about it at the time, no one will talk about it.

    Athen is in at Gustav’s listening to the radio. With warp energies abundant and satellites destroyed, the only acceptable mass broadcasts are once more the radio frequencies. Only the rich can afford cable connections, and even then, the intra-city network is still under construction.
    Then, she picks up something of interest. “..criminal activities in Vertden are still evident. Just this week, passersby in the subway S2 line station came across the remains of one subject, shot. Police investigating the scene of the crime reported that the subject was involved in illicit activities involving the Third Eye psychohallucinogenic. On other news…”
    “What’s that Third Eye?” she asks the bartender.
    “Beats me, I try to steer clear. Keeping a night business reputable is really hard these times. Anything you do, you keep it out of here, you hear me?” He comes down hard on her.
    “Geez man. Chill.” She cuts him off.
    “Sorry. Just making sure the policy is clear.” The bartender states.
    Athen continues her drink in silence.

    April 18th
    For the last day I will reveal the background events cards drawn, and also use BOLD for a waylay to start off the next adventure.
    Background Surprise Events Oracle: No event
    BOLD: Grim struggle (physical) overcome on accident
    Q: Is it a random event?
    A: False presupposition
    Huh. It’s not an event. It’s something different than an event. It’s the start of a thread of the adventure.
    BOLD states that the use of the solution can be rejected and the use of skill checks can replace it instead. Therefore I’m going to do that.
    Also it states that physical struggle is never about combat, so that’s not an option to start with.

    I’m quite at a loss at what the grim struggle could be about, so I’ll use a portent.
    Portent: Rule conflict
    So there is a conflict of rule… I’m starting to visualize something that could interpret this.
    It has to do with the Hunters. A fellow Hunter mocks her ranking and taunts and challenges her.

    Athen has arrived at Vertden FOB. It used to be a Forwards Operations Base back in the war, but it retained its name even though it switched functionality.
    Now it’s home to the local Hunters guild. Athen hasn’t had any tips and without any reward money from the chimaera, things are a bit dry. Sometimes rumors about possible monster sightings are discussed in the mess hall, and the guild offers some compensation, which for the novice Hunters equals to a bunk for the night and canned food. If things go worse, Athen might have to spend the nights here.
    She’s passing through the mess hall when she hears someone mocking her. At first she doesn’t realize he’s talking about her.

    Taro

    Donjon: Himeya “Assassin” Taro: Male Mercenary. Taro is thin, with blonde hair and bright amber eyes. He has a military cybernetic arm and carries an assault rifle. Taro is addicted to the street drug PBZ-3.
    UNE: NPC Power Level: Much stronger
    UNE: delightful conscript, offend poverty
    UNE: NPC Bearing: fear, NPC Conversation Focus: weapons

    “Came here for another can of meat, Smarte?” The man says. She’s heard this sarcastic voice before. It’s Taro. A haughty outranking asshole. “I have some orc ribs if you want to chew on them.” He laughs out loud. “I doubt you’d be able to hunt them down even if you starved for dinner. Especially with that little pistol of yours. That’s no weapon for a Hunter you must think of us fools if you want us to believe those stories of yours!” He keeps pushing it.

    Taro: Taunt: Success++ (14)
    Athen: Smarts: Failure (3)

    “I’ll show you who is a Hunter you bigmouth asshole.” Athen snaps. She’s had enough these past few days.
    “Bras de fer?” Taro asks smirking. “If I win you get the hell out of here.”
    “And if you lose?” Athen asks having fallen to his trap.
    “I won’t lose” He replies and places his arm on the table.

    armwrestling

    Q: Does Athen know about Taro’s cybernetic arm?
    A: Yes, seems she doesn’t care
    Q: Is it the left or right arm of Taro that’s cybernetic?
    A: (1-3 Left, 4-6 Right): Left.
    Q: Has he extended his left arm?
    A: Yes

    Since Athen Failed so hard against Taro’s taunt, she doesn’t pay attention to all the disadvantages. Taro has a cybernetic arm, and she is using her left arm, which will give her a -2 penalty.

    The first character to net 3 successes wins. I will be drawing action cards as usual.

    Taro: QH, Athen: 9S
    Taro: Athletics: Success
    Athen: Athletics: Failure

    Taro: JC, Athen: 8C
    Taro: Athletics: Success
    Athen: Athletics: Failure: Benny: Failure

    Taro: Joker, Athen: 8S
    Taro: Athletics: Success

    Athen sits across the table and extends her arm. They begin their match. Athen tries hard, with all her strength, but her left arm is not strong enough to counter Taro’s cybernetically enhanced limb. He pushes, and pushed, and her hand connects to the table.
    “Get out of here you stinking bitch.” He spits down in front of her.

    Wow I did not see that coming. I purposefully didn’t give Taro a Wild Card status to give Athen an edge, but everything went down so bad for her in terms of dice rolls.

    Her nerves at an edge. She stands up. She knows better than to escalate it. Realizing that she fell for every trick on the table, Athen sighs. She leaves, realizing it’s going to be a while before she manages to show her face again in the base.

    Time to create a story. I will use the two options from GMA and choose the one that generates the most tangible results.


    Disturb Foe, Backstage.
    A booming unnaturally loud voice
    Glowing slitted eyes
    Your ears suddenly pop
    Jasmine flowers


    A strike or protest, Stranded in the Wild, Bank being robbed
    Festival, Factory, Village
    Choice: A strike in the factory
    A phone ringing
    A dark bird watching
    Eye stinging drips of sweat
    Fried dough

    From the Vice/Virtue combo I choose Temperance/Wrath
    Name: Morikai
    Mocking snickers
    A suspicious hesitation
    Numb teeth
    Sharp spearmint

    Style: Earth, Mystery
    Tune: Tyr/Leadership: A just authority gets involved.


    I’m going to combine some of the above to kickstart the next story.

    Athen has just entered her apartment, still frustrated by the days events. ‘How did I fall for Taro’s play?’ She asks herself.
    She goes to the basin and splashed some water over her face to wash away the bitter feeling of defeat, when her phone rings.
    She’s so eager to cast away the thoughts that cloud her mind that she runs to pick it up, water still dripping from her face.

    colonel

    “Hey kiddo.” Says the voice on the other end. It’s Col. Leif Faulknen. Her commander from the war, and a veteran of the Hunters guild.
    “Hey colonel.” She says back.
    “Heard you came by the FOB today. I had something for you, but you never showed up.” He tells her.
    “Yes sir.” She replies.
    “I know about Taro. Don’t fret over it. You’re one of our best Hunters. Next time just don’t let him get to you.” He scolds her kindly.
    “I know sir…” She begins to explain herself but the Colonel cuts her off.
    “So there’s a possible prey at work in the Morikai Bread Factory. The workers are striking after another one of their own disappeared. Morikai himself is furious and wants the guild to act fast.”
    “What kind of opposition to expect?” She asks.
    “Reports from the workers are varying. Some say it has glowing slitted eyes. Others heard snickers, others heard a loud booming voice that made their ears pop. Take these with a grain of salt. You know how common folk are with fairy tales.” The colonel gives a briefing.
    “When do I start?” She asks.
    “Morikai is expecting you there already get a move on while it’s still daylight. I had a handful IRVPs for you at my desk, but you preferred to muscle it out with Taro instead of stopping by my office.”
    “Yes sir.” She replied. She knows the colonel doesn’t like to hear excuses. He’s a man who likes people who own to their mistakes. Those infrared vision pills would be of great help though. She cursed silently once more.
    “Dismissed.” The voice from the other end commanded, and she hang up the phone.

    Session Summary

    This session was mostly a filler session. I wanted to give a shot at the different event generation systems and other tools at my disposal.

    Savage Worlds Interludes: Not much suited for my style of solo play. I understand their value in a social ttrpg as they really help with immersion. The player narrates a story and gets attached to their character. Maybe this would work for a bullet type journal solo play as well. But since I’m already narrating the mechanics I found no added value here. I might give it another shot in the future, but I’m a bit hesitant.

    Savage Worlds Quick Encounters: I had already used focus in and focus out in other game systems and this was a similar experience. Worked as expected without any issues. Nothing more to say here.

    BOLD: One of my favorites. Although I’ve used waylays in the past for generating character background,
    I’ve never used it this way. I will need some more experience to get a better hang of it.

    GMA: So much information in a few cards. An excellent tool for solo play. A simple monster hunting mission has taken flesh. Workers on strike, a bread factory contradicting reports. Now I have a starting point.

    I’m not sure Athen is entitled to an advance after this session. After all it was too focused out and with too much downtime to justify it.

     
  • giorgis 12:50 pm on February 6, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    A monster’s bounty – A weird cyberpunk fantasy adventure – S1E01 Lion, Goat and Dragon 

    Q: How many stops until destination?
    A: 3d6: 11

    So it will take Athen ~1 hour to reach the destination.

    Q: Is there any encounter on the train?
    A: False Presupposition
    The train never arrives there must be a problem.

    Athen waits patiently in the subway platform. Five minutes pass. Then ten, then fifteen. She starts cursing. If it goes too late there won’t be any point getting to Svita’s home. No one will be willing to talk to a stranger in the dark of the night.
    She listens to an automated announcement. “Due to technical issues the S2 track to New Gorky will be inoperational.”
    ‘Just my luck.’ She thinks and goes outside. She has wasted a good 20 minutes. Time to hail a cab.

    Q: Does she find a cab?
    A: False Presupposition. She has no money for a cab.

    As she steps outside she takes a pause under a street light and takes a good look in her wallet. There’s no way the cash will be enough to get a taxi to New Gorky.
    Considering her options, Athen decides to go back in the subway and take the next train to Old Pictorial, where Svita was last seen.

    Q: Is it in the same subway line (Likely)
    A: Yes

    She needs to get S2 to get there as well, so she’ll bide her time and wait until everything is back on line.

    Q: Does it take long for the line to become operational?
    A: Yes, but not too long. 1d6 x 10 minutes: 30 minutes.
    Q: Does anything happen in the mean time?
    A: Yes
    GMA: Travel Mental Civilization

    NOTE: I decide that I will be using an independent secret clock on clubs regarding Svita’s death, and on spades regarding her health condition. Time tick is 4 hours.

    Travel Mental Civilization: First thing that comes to mind is some psychotropic substance or a virtual region in cyberspace, or maybe both? I roll 1d3: It’s a psychotropic substance that the user trips into believing they’re in another world, missing all contact with real life.
    So, how does this play into our story?

    Q: Does Athen see a drug exchange?
    A: Yes, and she has been noticed as well.
    Since it’s an exchange, there’s at least two parties involved. I will roll on UNE twice.
    UNE: Reputable servant, Destitute witch

    Also I need to define when during her wait does it happen? I roll 1d30: 14 minutes.

    station

    Athen is waiting patiently, minding her own business, when something happens, that catches her attention snapping her out of boredom.
    A destitute woman in a sorry state, hair unkempt, teeth missing, is crying, begging actually a man in a fine suit.

    Athen: Common Knowledge: Critical Failure

    Athen doesn’t recognize the man in the suit, but she can’t shake the feeling that he seems familiar. Unfortunately she spends too much time gazing and he took wind of her.

    Athen: Notice: Success

    The beggar woman mumbles to him something like “give me some of yours, you have so many”, but the man seems fixated on Athen.
    With his attention elsewhere, the woman pulls at his arm, revealing a bag of green pills from inside his coat.
    He pushes the woman away. “Begone you stupid witch!” He shouts.
    But it’s too late now for Athen to play it stupid. She has seen the drugs and he knows it. Considering the quantity, there’s good chance he’s involved or his dealer is nearby.
    Getting caught in others’ business is not how Athen wanted to start the night.

    With Athen’s successful notice roll, I will ask a few obvious things.

    Q: Is there security/law enforcement nearby?
    A: No and there are no security cameras either
    Q: Are there any goons nearby?
    A: Yes and they have noticed Athen. There are 1d3+1: 4 goons.
    Q: Is it crowded?
    A: False Presupposition. I can’t decide on a proper FP, so I ask again and get a: No and, it’s completely empty.
    Also an intervention triggered.
    Intervention: Regress plot.
    The whole event is a regress plot on its own. Athen has no other choice. Run away or risk and stay.

    Athen looks around the empty platform, as she increases her pace away from the event, trying to hide among the subway support columns.
    She notices four unsavory figures moving towards her.
    She curses as she realizes that she saw something she shouldn’t have. She’s on her own. No security cameras, no officers either. Was it on purpose? She pulls her firearm and ducks behind a pillar, her heart pounding.


    Round 1
    Initiative: Athen: 10♦️, Suit: A♠️, Beggar: 5♣️, Goons: 4♣️

    Q: Does the Suit Flee? (Likely)
    A: False Presupposition. He’s nowhere to be seen. Maybe he’s fled already.

    Athen shoots at Goon1: Double Tap: Hit: Wounded. He’s down.

    The beggar woman flees.

    Since the Goons aren’t exactly fanatics, I will be rolling a Spirit roll at -1 for every casualty after the first, to see if they stay or leave.
    Goons: Spirit: Success

    Goon2: Shoots at Athen: Miss
    Goon3: Shoots at Athen: Miss
    Goon4: Shoots at Athen: Miss

    Round 2
    Initiative: Athen: A♥️, Goons: Joker

    Goon2: Shoots at Athen: Miss
    Goon3: Shoots at Athen: Miss
    Goon4: Shoots at Athen: Miss

    Athen shoots at Goon4: Double Tap: Wounded: He’s down.

    Round 3
    Initiative: Athen 10♦️, Goons K♥️

    Goons: Spirit (-1): They flee.

    Fearing for her life, Athen ducks out of cover and double taps her .45 semi to the man coming at her from the outer side of the platform. Both shots hit, the bang echoing through the platform, and he falls down next to a bench, clutching his chest.
    The man in the suit is nowhere to be seen, while the beggar woman flees. She knows all too well when to disappear.
    Two of the men take cover behind the columns and shoot back at Athen, missing, while the last one moves on trying to flank her, shooting at her but missing wildly.
    They shoot another round as Athen stays behind cover safely.
    Athen’s military training kicks in. She knows the danger of being flanked and shoots at the man in semi-auto wounding him as well. As he falls, the rest of his friends run away, not expecting such opposition.

    Athen will try to find her shell casings.
    Athen: Notice: Success++++

    Athen picks up her shell casings one by one, and sprints out of the subway station. She’s not afraid of persecution. The police don’t care about low lifes who turned to crime, but she just wants to be sure.
    No matter, she’ll have to find another way to get to her destination.
    She decides that her best option right now would be to walk to the next S2 line subway station and take the next train from there.

    Athen: Stealth: Success

    With some vague math, I calculate that the station is about 30 minutes walking distance from her current location.

    She keeps her head hooded, low profile, avoiding eye contact and walks quietly, sticking to the shadows whenever possible, without drawing to much attention to herself. Eventually, she reaches South Ckena station, and takes the train to Old Pictorial. It’s 22.00 h when she finally arrives.

    I will draw 3 GMA cards to get some insight as to what where Svita’s last whereabouts.
    GMA: Regenerate Fair Container.
    This fits in nicely with Svita’s mechanic profession (which was pending verification from my part), so I’ll go along with it.

    Athen heads to the power scrapyard.
    The old power units where converted to use warp energy during the war, but this took a heavy toll on the huge capacitors. They were oxidized rapidly, discarded and sent to scrap yards. Bold -or stupid one might say- engineers, mechanics and technicians in need of fast cash, often tried to salvage them and get them back to operational status, subjecting themselves to warp radiation in the process. Mutation, cancer and death was not uncommon, and they more than often had to spend their savings in cybernetic replacements for the afflicted body parts.
    Athen heads up to the gate and takes a good look to see if there’s anyone human guarding the fenced premises. She has better luck with living beings rather than automatons.

    Athen: Notice: Success+
    Q: Is there anyone inside? (Likely)
    A: Yes
    UNE: Plebeian Cleric. GMA: Temperance/Fear

    Inside the gatehouse is a tired middle aged man with medium brown hair, eyeing Athen carefully. In the wall behind him all sorts of religious symbols are hanging. Only one of his hands is visible, playing with a poker chip of abstinence. His other hand is behind the counter, probably holding on to a gun aiming at Athen, or an alarm button at the ready. He seems nervous and Athen doesn’t want to startle him any further.
    “What do you want?” He demands.
    Athen decides to play the Hunter card. She slowly removes her hood, revealing her face along with her battle scars. She looks him in the eye.
    “I think you may need pest control. Someone went missing around here.” She answers.

    Athen: Persuasion: Failure: Benny: Success.

    Hesitant at first, the man pushes the button to open the fenced gate.
    “You do what you have to, Hunter” he says and closes the window before Athen has a chance to reply.
    She would have wanted to ask a few questions, but she decides not to press her luck any further.
    She turns on her flashlight, and with her other hand ready at her pistol, she begins to investigate the yard.

    I will draw a GMA card and choose a sensory input and take it from there.

    GMA: Petrichor–Rain on dry earth

    Q: Has it rained? (Unlikely – Had no such input)
    A: No

    Athen walks around, using her flashlight. The petrichor smell fills her nostrils, but there is not a single trace of evidence that it has rained before. She didn’t catch wind of any clouds in the sky or thunder. Something was clearly off.

    Athen: Notice: Failure: Benny: Success.

    I will draw three GMA cards to generate an event.

    GMA: Defeat material deity

    I interpret the material deity as a supernatural creature. It’s a monster. I will take the abstract route regarding defeat and ask the Oracle.

    Q: Is there a dead (defeated) monster here?
    A: No

    So it’s a live one, and Athen needs to defeat it.

    I will roll on Sharp Swords and Sinister Spells monster generator for it.
    I get Beast: Body of an animal, tail of another and wings of a third.
    I won’t bother to roll any further. I decide it’s a Chimera.

    Since Athen is walking around with a flashlight it’s unlikely she’s undetected.

    Her senses alert, unnatural weather events means warp energy has manifested in this place, but that’s to be expected in this scrap yard. It’s the perfect hiding place for beasts.
    As she turns around the corner, between the gaps of a huge capacitor, her flashlight lights up a lions head with eyes closed. As she spreads the light around she sees that’s it’s located on a goats body and sports wings as well. The light awakens the beast and it opens its jaws letting off a loud roar.

    Initiative: Athen: J♠️, Chimaera: 9♦️
    Athen: Double-tap & move behind cover.
    Athen: Shooting: Hit+: Shaken
    Chimaera: Spirit: Success: Won’t be shaken next round

    Initiative: Athen: 10♣️, Chimaera: 5♠️
    Athen will shoot & reload.
    Athen: Shooting: Hit: No damage
    Chimaera will breathe fire.
    Athen: Agility: Critical Failure: Benny: Success

    Initiative: Athen: 7♣️, Chimaera: Joker
    Chimaera will close in melee, attacking twice.
    Chimaera: Fighting: Miss, Miss
    Athen will double tap.
    Athen: Shooting: Miss

    Initiative: Athen: Q♣️, Chimaera: Joker
    Chimaera will continue fighting.
    Chimaera: Fighting: Hit, Hit: Shaken, No damage.
    Athen: Spirit: Failure: Still Shaken

    Initiative: Athen: J♣️, Chimaera: 7♠️
    Athen: Spirit: Success+: Can act this round!
    Athen will double tap.
    Athen: Shooting: Hit+: 2 Wounds!
    Chimaera: Spirit: Failure: Still Shaken

    Initiative: Athen: 9♠️, Chimaera: 7♦️
    Athen will disengage & double tap.
    Athen: Shooting: Hit+: Wounded
    Chimaera: Spirit: Success: Won’t be shaken next round

    Initiative: Athen: A♥️, Chimaera: 3♦️
    Athen will move further & shoot & reload
    Athen: Shooting: Miss
    Chimaera: Flies away

    Initiative: Athen: 9♦️, Chimaera: K♠️
    Chimaera: Flies away
    Athen will run closer and double tap
    Athen: Shooting: Miss

    Initiative: Athen: 6♥️, Chimaera: Joker
    Chimaera: Flies away
    Athen will walk closer and double tap
    Athen: Shooting: Hit: Dead!

    The lieutenant fires at the monster with her trusty .45, hitting its wing. It roars in pain, shaken. She shoots, hitting once more and with her clip empty, she makes a quick reload. This time the beast’s thick hide didn’t get penetrated.
    The monster opens its mouth and where Athen expected another roar, she sees a jet of fire forming. Quickly she ducks behind the tough capacitor cover, letting the flames die behind her.
    The beast finds the opportunity to close in the distance and with a quick flip of its wings, it’s on top of Athen, clawing at her vainly as she evades using the cover as an obstacle. She shoots back twice, but she’s at a disadvantage now and misses both shots.
    The chimaera claws at her once more and lashes at her with its dragon head tail, bitting her ribs to her left side. Her Kevlar vest saves her life as dragon teeth get embedded in it. Shaken from the attack it takes her but a moment to snap out of it. She’s faced monsters before!
    She aims closely to the torso and blasts off twice. Both shots penetrate the thorax and the chimaera cries out in pain. It’s bellowing roar echoing in the yard.
    As the beast is immobile due to the suffering, she opens up some distance between them, moving among the capacitors, while shooting twice more, hurting it further.
    Athen reaches a safe distance, and empties her clip, her last shot missing before she reloads once more.
    Grievously wounded, the flying tetrapod takes to the sky, Athen barely realizing that she’s the hunter again. She has opened too much distance between them, and she runs after the flying monster, shooting twice and missing.
    The beast is even further away, as Athen slows down to take better aim. Her double tap finds its target, and with a loud cry the beast crashes down to the ground.

    Athen will try to remove valuable parts from the chimaera.
    Athen: Survival: Success.
    She removes the most obvious parts without getting hurt in the process.

    Athen catches her breath. She looks at her torn jacket, the kevlar vest showing underneath. She counts her bullets, only 3 remaining. She knows she’s had it close.
    She runs to the corpse and cuts off the tail and the head before going to the gatehouse.

    “You got a bag? Preferably a big plastic one?” She asks the guard who is locked behind his counter. He nods and throws one at her without saying a word. The sight of the chimera’s head has got his tongue.
    “Call the cleanup crew tomorrow. It’s a 500 pound carcass in there. Don’t leave it to rot, it will attract more of them.” She says with an air of authority. She doesn’t feel the underdog anymore.

    If Svita was last seen here, odds are, she’s dead. Athen won’t be looking for her. She killed the monster. For her, it’s mission accomplished. Now she’ll have to call that Merlin guy. See what he has to offer for the monster body parts.

    Session Summary

    Another rough start for one of my protagonists!
    And all those False Presuppositions!
    In a discord discussion I had with Thessius regarding Recluse, he pointed how one could change the odds of how often FPS occur, by choosing a different die size. I’m considering making this variable based on how the story progresses, maybe in combination with interventions. Changing the die size also is in line with the Savage Worlds trope.
    In another discussion with him, he also referred to Chekhov’s Gun. I’ve read about it and found it really interesting. So essentially I intend to try and connect the events that occurred in the station to my main thread of the missing person, by asking the relative questions when they appear in the narrative, essentially biasing the story. By asking the Oracle, I will still keep a random factor in play, retaining the possibility for it being a random event/side quest.

    One thing that bugged me, is how easily I switched Athen to murder hobbo in the station. She shot first! I was wondering if all the low fantasy adventures I run in the previous weeks had switched my mindset. In retrospect, I think I played her well in character. She’s alone, in an abandoned subway station with four no-good-doers approaching. She knows she saw something she shouldn’t and they most probably want to silence her. The lack of security means there’s an open ground for a fight. With all her background, I think I chose correctly.

    In the end I thought this was going to be a slow investigation session, building up to the final confrontation in one of the next ones, but I was proven wrong. The fight with the chimaera was so close! I’ll definitely be giving Athen an advancement after that, and she definitely deserves some downtime and new gear.

    As to the game system, Savage Worlds is once more a nice breath of fast, furious, fun. Combat resolved fast, cinematic and with several ups and downs. I’m still at a mix between editions and I will have to define further the rules I’m allowed to use.

    Developing the world setting alongside with the story and playing the protagonist is both difficult and exciting at the same time! I take things slow and I intend to keep it this way. If she survives I may use this as a main quest and run other one-shots and develop tools on the side in-between sessions.

     
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