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  • giorgis 3:11 pm on November 10, 2019 Permalink | Reply
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    Return from Syriholm S2E02-S2E03 

    Episode 2

    I designed the giant beetles after the giant spider, without their special abilities, some extra armour (toughness) and greater strength. I roll and get 2 Giant Beetles.

    Name Agility Smarts Spirit Strength Vigor Pace Parry Toughness Fighting Bite
    Giant Beetle d8 d4(A) d6 d12 d8 6 6 10(4) d8 Str+d4

    So in order to play out the background event, Atiel must make a Vigor roll, or suffer a Wound and be Shaken.
    Vigor (d6): 6+3=9, Success with 1 Raise. Not Wounded, not shaken.

    I roll for distance, and get that the Giant Beetles are at 10 and 11 distance respectively.

    Round1:
    Party: 8♠️
    Beetles: A♥️

    Beetle 1 Runs: 6+5=11, reaches Furi and attacks.
    Fighting (d8): 2-2=0/6: Miss
    Beetle 2 Runs: 6+5=11, reaches Atiel and attacks.
    Fighting (d8): 7-2=5/5: Hit
    Damage (d12+d4): 6/6: Shaken

    Furi draws his Great Axe and attacks Beetle 1.
    Fighting (d10): 5-2=3/6: Miss
    Atiel Spirit roll (d6): 4: Success
    Atiel draws her Sword and attacks Beetle 2.
    Fighting (d6): 6+2=8-2=6/6: Hit
    Damage: 3/10: No damage

    Round2:
    Party: K♦️
    Beetles: 8♥️

    Furi attacks Beetle 1.
    Fighting (d10): 7/6: Hit
    Damage (2d10, AP 1): 3/9: No damage
    Atiel attacks Beetle 2.
    Fighting (d6): 5/6: Miss

    Beetle 1 attacks Furi.
    Fighting (d8): 7/5: Hit
    Damage (d12+d4): 15/9: 1 Wound
    Furi will spend a Benny to soak.
    Vigor (d6): 6, Shaken.
    I mistakenly removed a wound here. Need to get to know the rules better.
    Beetle 2 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8): 3/5: Miss

    Round 3:
    Party: 4♣️
    Beetles: 3♦️

    Furi Spirit Roll (d6): 5: Success
    Furi attacks Beetle 1.
    Fighting (d10): 7/6: Hit
    Damage (2d10, AP 1): 10/9: Shaken
    Atiel attacks Beetle 2.
    Fighting (d6): 5/6: Miss

    Beetle 1 Spirit Roll (d6): 3: Fail, Shaken
    Bettle 2 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8): 2/5: Miss

    Round 4:
    Party: JOKER
    Bettles: 10♠️

    Furi attacks Beetle 1.
    Fighting (d10): Critical Failure.
    I will use a Benny to re-roll.
    Fighting (d10): 7/6: Hit
    Damage (2d1), AP 1): 8, Shaken again, Wounded. Beetle 1 is out.

    Bettle 2 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8): 3/5: Miss

    Round 5:
    Party: 3♥️
    Beetles: A♥️

    Bettle 2 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8): 1/5: Miss

    Furi attacks Beetle 1.
    Fighting (d10): 4/6: Miss
    Atiel attacks Beetle 2.
    Fighting (d6): 4/6: Miss

    Round 6:
    Party: 2♦️
    Beetles: J♥️

    Bettle 2 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8): 1/5: Miss

    Furi Wild Attack Beetle 1.
    Fighting (d10): 14+2/6: Hit with a Raise.
    Damage (2d10+d6, AP 1): 15/8: Wounded. Beetle 2 is out.

    Despite the tear in her wound, Atiel grits her teeth and pulls through.
    The Giant Beetles close in, but Furi manages to slaughter both of them before they hurt him or his elven companion.

    Q: Is it possible to climb out?
    A: False Presupposition. It is not required to climb out. The collapse has provided a slope that can be walked. The party can leave the chasm easily.

    Despite rolling down in the chasm, the collapse has created a natural ramp to the top, so the duo walks out without any effort.


    Episode 3

    Bennies are refreshed.

    Day 8:
    Encounter Engine: Wandering Monster
    Terrain Engine: Plains
    Weather Engine: Dark Clouds/Rain
    Encounter: Blink Dog. I translate this to Dire Wolf.

    I will make a notice roll. If successful, the team will be arms ready.
    Furi: Notice (d6): 8, Success with a raise.
    Atiel: Notice (d6): 4, Success.

    I roll 1d6: 6 Dire Wolves!
    I roll 2d6 for their distance: 7.

    Round 1:
    Party: 4♦️
    Wolves: 4♥️
    The wolves go first by a hair.
    I split them in 3s. Three go for Furi and three for Atiel. They gang up on them and get a +2 bonus.

    Dire Wolf 1 attacks Furi.
    Fighting (d8+2): 15/6: Hit with a Raise. Go For Throat.
    Damage (d8+d6+d6): 7/7: Shaken.
    Dire Wolf 2 attacks Furi.
    Fighting (d8+2): 6/6: Hit.
    Damage (d8+d6): 9/9: Shaken twice. Furi is wounded.
    Dire Wolf 3 attacks Furi.
    Fighting (d8+2): 7/6: Hit.
    Damage (d8+d6): 12/9: Shaken again. Furi is wounded twice.
    Furi spends a Benny to soak.
    Furi: Vigor (d10): 11: Success and a Raise. Furi only suffers one wound.

    Dire Wolf 4 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+2): 6/5: Hit.
    Damage (d8+d6): 8/6: Shaken.
    Dire Wolf 5 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+2): 7/5: Hit.
    Damage (d8+d6): 19/6: Three wounds!
    Atiel will spend a Benny to soak.
    Atiel: Vigor (d6): 5.
    Atiel will spend another Benny to reroll the soak.
    Atiel: Vigor (d6): 8: Success with a raise, she only receives one Wound.
    Dire Wolf 6 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+2): 4/6: Miss.

    Furi: Spirit (d6): 14: Success with a raise. He’s not shaken.
    Furi attacks Dire Wolf 1.
    Fighting (d10-1): 8/6: Hit.
    Damage (2d10): 5/6: No damage.
    Atiel: Spirit (d6): 5: Success. She’s not shaken.
    Atiel attacks Dire Wolf 4.
    Fighting (d6-2): 8/6: Hit.
    Damage (2d6): 12/6: Wolf is Wounded and out.

    Round 2:
    Party: 2♦️
    Wolves: 8♣️

    Dire Wolf 1 attacks Furi.
    Fighting (d8+2): 3/6: Miss
    Dire Wolf 2 attacks Furi.
    Fighting (d8+2): 15/6: Hit with Raise. Go for the throat.
    Damage (d8+d6+d6): 22/7: 3 more Wounds for a total of 4.
    Furi will spend his last Benny and attempt to soak a wound.
    Furi: Vigor (d10-1): 7: Success, no raise.
    Furi has no more bennies and is incapacitated.
    Dire Wolf 3 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+2): 7/6: Hit.
    Damage (d8+d6): 3/5: No Damage
    Dire Wolf 5 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+2): 7/6: Hit.
    Damage (d8+d6): 9/5: Wounded.
    Atiel will spend a Benny and attempt to soak the damage.
    Atiel: Vigor (d6-2): 8/4: Success with a raise. She’s not wounded further.
    Dire Wolf 6 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+2): 5/6: Miss

    Atiel attacks Dire Wolf 5.
    Fighting (d6-2): 0.
    Atiel spends a Benny to reroll the attack.
    Fighting (d6-2): 8/6: Hit.
    Damage (2d6): 9/6: Shaken.

    Round 3:
    Party: 7♥️
    Wolves: 6♣️

    Atiel attacks Wolf 5.
    Fighting (d6-2): 3/6: Miss

    Q: Does Dire Wolf 1 perform a Coup de Grace on Furi?
    A: Yes. Furi does.

    Dire Wolf 2 attacks Atiel
    Fighting (d8+2): 5: Miss
    Dire Wolf 3 attacks Atiel
    Fighting (d8+2): 3: Miss
    Dire Wolf 5 Spirit roll.
    Spirit (d6): 1: Remains Shaken.
    Dire Wolf 6 attacks Atiel
    Fighting (d8+2): 4: Miss

    Round 4:
    Party: Q♣️
    Wolves: 2♥️

    Atiel attacks Dire Wolf 5.
    Fighting (d6-2): 3/6: Miss

    Dire Wolf 1 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+3): 6/6: Hit
    Damage (d8+d6): 11/5: Wounded
    Dire Wolf 2 attacks Atiel.
    Fighting (d8+3): 15/6: Hit, with a raise, Go for the throat.
    Damage (d8+d6+d6): 11/5: Wounded. Atiel is incapacitated.

    The next day finds them walking in the tall grass plains under rain.
    Suddenly Furi notices the top of the grass stalks move. He draws his great axe, and Atiel readies her sword.
    Not a moment after, they are jumped upon by wolves.
    Not the small ones. These are giant beasts that the goblins tame and ride in battle.
    Furi tries to hack at them unsuccessfully, and they gnaw and slash at him. Finally the jaws of a mighty beast find the opening in his armor near the neck, and it gashes open a wound.
    Atiel has already thrust her sword in the belly of a beast, but seeing her companion fall, she lets out a scream.
    The wolves seem undeterred and they follow up, tearing apart the fallen dwarf.
    Atiel tries to survive, but to no avail. She wounds another wolf, but she is outnumbered. Soon, her leg is bleeding and she can’t stand well. Another attack rips her arm, and finally a wolf jumps on top of her, it’s bite killing the fair elf.


    Session Background: Ouch, Savage Worlds is indeed furious.
    I don’t know the system balance, so in retrospect, 6 dire wolves were too much for two characters.
    Also I failed to use my characters edges. Furi should have Sweeped at them, and if he failed, use a Benny to reroll the attack. Should have known better. You can’t draw a fight for long. You must take advantage at all costs or perish as I did.
    I’m new to Savage Worlds and did a few mistakes at the combat rules here and there, but I’m eager to learn them and try again with other parties.
    About the Background Surprise Events Framework. Since I had an event trigger and I was wondering about it, I consider the experiment successful. There is of course room for improvement.
    Regarding the Into the heart of the Unknown Hexflower Engine, I must say I loved it. If I spend the time to design an encounter list to my liking, then I will have results without much effort. It’s very good for wilderness encounters and mapping the wild. The weather and terrain Engine could be modified a bit to fit other climates and seasons if needed, since now they are for a temperate region.

     
  • giorgis 10:12 am on November 6, 2019 Permalink | Reply
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    Return from Syriholm S2E00-S2E01 

    So, I want to play test my Background Suprise Events ruleset. In order to do that, I’ve decided to return to my Hexflower dungeon crawl adventure and pick it up from there.
    I’ll be switching gears from MiniSix which had serious balance issues for me, to Savage Worlds. So I went ahead and converted the two survivors to SW and since they got out of Syriholm alive, also gave them 5 exp, and an advance, which I spent.

    Below are their stats.

    Name Furi Grinarson
    Archetype Fighter,Great Weapon
    Race Dwarf
    Attributes
    Agility d6
    Smarts d4
    Spirit d6
    Strength d10
    Vigor d8
    Skills
    Fighting d10
    Intimidation d6
    Notice d6
    Repair d4
    Taunt d6
    Low light vision
    Charisma
    Pace 5
    Parry 7
    Toughness 7+2
    Hindrances Code of Honor,Loyal,Greedy minor
    Edges Brawny,Sweep
    Experience Points 5
    Advance
    Weapons Great Axe
    Armor Chain Hauberk
    Name Atiel Nerdalye
    Archetype Marksman
    Race Elf
    Attributes
    Agility d12
    Smarts d6
    Spirit d6
    Strength d6
    Vigor d6
    Skills
    Fighting d6
    Healing d6
    Notice d6
    Shooting d10
    Stealth d4
    Taunt d6
    Tracking d6
    Low light vision
    Charisma
    Pace 6
    Parry 5
    Toughness 6\
    Hindrances Heroic, Phobia minor snakes,Loyal, All Thumbs
    Edges Alertness
    Experience Points 5
    Advance
    Weapons Bow, Short Sword
    Armor Leather

    Furi managed to recover the great axe heirloom from the hands of Gorkil. I decide that this axe of dwarven craftsmanship will inflict a +1 step on the damage die on a raise (d12).

    Normally I wouldn’t list them, but since this is an example playtest of the ruleset I will describe the possible background events that may unravel for the party:

    Suit Event
    Hearts Their dead party members family reaches up to them and have a request
    Diamonds Rumors of their journey in Syriholm reaches unsavory characters who will ambush them for their supposed treasure
    Clubs The orc new leader to prove his mettle, has sent assassins after them
    Spades Both members were severely wounded, maybe a wound has festered? Furi drank a concoction of dragon’s blood, could this have some side effects?

    So, staying true to the Hexflower, I will be using In the heart of the unknown Hexflower engine from goblin’s henchman.
    It has a terrain engine, an encounter engine and a weather engine all in one. I will be using the default encounters as described there. The party will start in the mountains.

    What is the objective? I will start off with a Savage Worlds chase. Orc boar riders are after them. They must successfully escape, whether it’s defeating their pursuers or gaining enough distance. This will bring the group together, instead of splitting up to their own devices.

    Additional rules

    I’ll be using the Usage Die and Resource Die mechanic from Sharp Swords & Sinister Spells and the Addendum.
    I feel that since there are dice steps, it will fit in well with the Savage worlds mechanics.

    Resource Die
    Funds d6
    Rations d10
    Torches d6
    Water d8
    Healing kits d6
    Adventuring gear (spikes, hooks, ropes) d6
    Arrows d12

    Prologue-Intro

    Atiel wakes up to the sound of panicking and galloping horses. She’s on her feet within seconds and realizes it’s their own horses.
    They’re already gone, but what startled them?
    She puts her ear to the ground, and can hear the sound of hooves. Heavy and smashing to the ground. Two Orc boar riders with scimitars! She kicks Furi, her hard hearing dwarf companion to wake him up and she picks ups her gear.
    Furi quickly follows and the two of them start running in the undergrowth as the boar riders appear in the distance, screaming their war cry.

    I will be using the Savage Worlds Chase rules to run this. I will use a 5-round chase which is the default.
    The orcs have a +2 bonus due to their boars speed.

    Annotations
    Wild Cards other than PCs will be noted with a ⚜️ in front. When a Wild Die is rolled, it won’t be noted, just the final best result between both dice.

    Round 1:
    Atiel: Agility (d10): 6: Success, 6♦️.
    Furi: Agility (d6): 2: –
    Orcs: Riding (d6,+2): 3+2=5: Success, 5♥️.
    Atiel: Shooting (d10,-4): 9-4=5: Hit, Damage (2d6): 3/8: No damage.
    Arrows usage (d12): 6, No downgrade.
    Furi has no action card and doesn’t act.
    Orcs are at long range and can’t attack.

    Round 2:
    Atiel: Agility (d10): 4: Success, 5♠️.
    Furi: Agility (d6): 2: –
    Orcs: Riding (d6,+2): 2+2=4: Success, Q♠️.
    Atiel has an action card lower than the orcs and can’t attack. The orcs are at long range and can’t attack.

    Round 3:
    Atiel: Agility (d10): 5: Success, 8♦️.
    Furi: Agility (d6): 2: –
    Orcs: Riding (d6,+2): 5+2=4: Success, Q♥️.
    Atiel has an action card lower than the orcs and can’t attack. The orcs are at long range and can’t attack.

    Round 4:
    Atiel: Agility (d10): 4: Success, 5♣️, Obstacle.
    Atiel Agility (d10-2): 9-2=7: Success, she avoids Bumps and Bruises due to obstacle.
    Furi: Agility (d6): 6+4=10: Success and Raise, ~~7♣️~~, 5♦️.
    Orcs: Riding (d6,+2): 1+2=3: –
    Atiel: Shooting (d10,-4): 5-4=1: Miss
    Arrows usage (d12): 6, No downgrade.
    Furi is at long range and can’t attack.

    Round 5:
    Atiel: Agility (d10): 4: Success, 10♣️, Obstacle.
    Atiel Agility (d10-2): 4-2=2: She gets one Fatigue level due to Bumps and Bruises.
    Furi: Agility (d6): 3: –
    Orcs: Riding (d6,+2): 3+2=5: Success, 6♥️.
    Atiel: Shooting (d10,-4-1): 6+2-4-1=3: Miss
    Arrows usage (d12): 6, No downgrade.
    Orcs are at long range and can’t attack.
    End of chase, the characters escape.

    Atiel and Furi sprint as fast as they can, the orc riders behind them in the distance. The terrain is on their side as the thick bushes and branches delay the boars as their riders force them through.
    Atiel finds an opening and lets off an arrow which fails to penetrate the thick leather armor of the orc.
    Elegantly she evades a tree trunk in front of her, while Furi tries to keep up.
    Another arrow misses her target, and distracted as she is, she stumbles and falls in a small trench, getting bumped and bruised. Her next arrow misses again as she is disoriented from the fall.
    Nevertheless they manage to climb atop a small hill and evade the orcish pursuit.
    Without their steeds, they begin to walk back to civilization.

    Episode 1

    Day 1:
    Encounter Engine: Wandering Monster, distant/improbable
    Terrain Engine: Hills
    Weather Engine: Sunny/Rain
    Encounter: Lion

    Atiel: Notice (d6+2,-1): 6+4+2-1=11: Success, Raise
    Rations (d10): 5: Ok

    The first day, they descend the mountains, and travel a hillside. It’s afternoon, when Atiel stops Furi and motions him to be silent. Her keen elven eyesight has detected a mountain lion in wait far in the distance. They decide to make a detour rather than face the beast.

    Day 2:
    Encounter Engine: Equipment Trouble
    Terrain Engine: Hills
    Weather Engine: Sunny/Cloudy
    Rations (d10): 8: Ok
    Encounter: Healing kit downgrade to d4

    The next day, as Atiel checks on her gear, she has noticed worms! They have eaten through a significant amount of her healing herbs. Thankfully, she’s no longer bruised.

    Day 3:
    Encounter Engine: Major Settlement
    Terrain Engine: Arid
    Weather Engine: Raining

    Q: Do humans live here?
    A: Yes, and, it’s a bustling city
    Time of arrival: Midnight
    Q: Do the guards let them in?
    A: No
    Rations (d10): 8: Ok

    Finally at midnight of the following day, they reach Camora. A huge walled city in the middle of an poor arid valley. No matter how much they knock and bang at the gates, no one opens, and they camp outside the walls, waiting for the dawn.

    Day 4:
    Q: Do the guards let them in? (Likely)
    A: Yes
    They will spend the night at the Green shield inn and listen to rum ours.
    Smarts (d6): 6+5=11, Success, Raise
    They find a quest.
    Funds (d6, rent a room at the inn): 1: Downgrade to d4.
    I’ve used donjon for the quest generator and GMA to find out what Sabazzu (see below) has committed.

    In the morning, they enter Camora. They put on their cloaks again, as the humans seem suspicious of other races. A culturally diverse city like Camora thankfully is quite safe for the elf and dwarf adventurers.
    After so many days in the wild and in the Syriholm dungeon, they decide to rent a room at a local inn, The Green Shield, and listen to local rumors. Their coins are dwindling dangerously.
    As they drink casually in the bar, a priest named Enetros recognizes them as adventurers.
    -Please noble warriors. Sabazzu the Terrible and his cultists committed a most heinous crime today. They defenestrated the high priest, a holy man, who fell to his death from the temple top floor. The local militia won’t see to the matter. Bring us justice and you will be rewarded!
    Furi, worries about their financial state, and turns to Atiel.
    -We have lost our steeds, and we are low on gold. Let’s do this one, and then we can part each to his own way.
    -We have to help this poor man get justice. I’m with you on this one as well Furi Grinarsson.

    Day 5:
    They begin their tracking from Camora.
    Tracking (d6+2+1-2): 4: Success
    Encounter Engine: Equipment Trouble
    Terrain Engine: Hills
    Weather Engine: Heavy Rain
    Encounter: Torches got wet and ruined due to the heavy rain, downgraded to d4.
    Rations (d10): 2, Downgrade to d8

    The party has found the tracks of Sabazzu fleeing Camora and follow the group to the wilderness.
    Heavy rain catches with them and soon the tracks are gone. To top it all, the torches are soaking wet in the backpack, and they are left with only a few usable ones.

    Day 6:
    Encounter Engine: Signs of Civilization
    Terrain Engine: Arid
    Weather Engine: Storm
    Tracking (d6-3): 0: Failure
    Rations (d8): 3: Ok

    The storm is so heavy that the tracks are gone for good and they can’t follow. They will continue in the general direction they think Sabazzu has went and hope they can catch up with the tracks soon.

    Day 7:
    I draw the final card and reveal all the 7 of them and I get an event!
    Didn’t expect it so soon. The first three cards where spades!
    This also means that whatever is happening has started a while and out character had no idea.
    So Who? A: Atiel

    Encounter Engine: Lair/Monster Settlement
    Terrain Engine: Special, Chasm
    Weather Engine: Clouds
    Encounter: Giant Beetles

    That’s some good luck for the experiment, but some bad luck for the group! As they meet some monsters in their lair, Atiel’s wound has reopened!

    The storm has ended, and as the party moves on, the ground collapses from the torrents and they fall down in a deep chasm. Atiel screams, as her wound from the orcs of Syriholm sends waves of searing pain through her.
    But that’s the least of their worries, Furi draws his great axe, while man-sized beetles crawl towards them, eager to devour their newfound meal.

    Resource Die
    Funds d4
    Rations d8
    Torches d4
    Water d8
    Healing kits d4
    Adventuring gear (spikes, hooks, ropes) d6
    Arrows d12

    Session Background: I didn’t expect that quick success. An event from the first week of play! Now, I know I have to give Atiel a chance to avoid this wound, but I need to think through the trait roll, so I will do it in the next session along with the combat!
    For this adventure, I did the same as with the dungeon crawl in Syriholm, maybe even more pronounced. I played on a high level. I didn’t go into moderate or tiny details. Instead I focused out. This allows for fast, dynamic play. Less roleplaying though, but it fits well for what I want to achieve.

     
  • giorgis 10:58 pm on October 4, 2019 Permalink | Reply  

    The ruins of Syriholm – S1E03 

    Hexflower dungeon crawling

    As Atiel returns, I will be rolling for alarms for every hex that she passes through.
    Alarm roll: 1: She encounters an orc patrol!
    Her sneak skill is successful and she passes past undetected.

    Atiel reaches the part of Syriholm where the rats killed Erias. Her sharp ear, catches the sound of footsteps. She quickly hides in a dark alleyway as 5 orcs armed to the teeth pass through. They look as if they are searching for something. Maybe they got whiff of the party killing their kind.


    Furi hex roll: 4 (doubles): goto 14: alarm
    Due to the doubles there is a second pass here, and also the alarm level is decreased by one to 1.
    The story clock is at 40/100.
    Q: Is it an orc of dwarven alarm?
    A: Orc
    It’s a simple contraption. A tripwire connected to a weight that is released and rings bells.
    I will roll Wit to see if Furi detects the tripwire, and then Agility to get past it (Easy Difficulty if detected).

    Furi walks through a tight stone corridor that is forking down the path.
    He notices that it is not very much walked. The stone floor seems to have gathered a thick film of dust. This makes Furi worried and then he realizes why. He notices a barely visible tripwire near the floor. With a careful step, he passes over it without triggering it.


    Atiel has passed through the tower gate where they defeated the big orc and his archer companions without any encounter. The exit is closer!


    Furi hex roll: 5 (alarm level increases by 1): goto 12: TRAP
    Story clock: 52
    Again, I will roll to see if he detects the trap and then if he avoids it.
    He detects it but fails to avoid it. Since I have the ancient Dragon Quest by TSR, I decided to draw a card from the traps deck, and I get a trap of Greek Fire!
    I decide it will do 5D damage for 3 rounds. Furi got an Incapacitated wound, but he succeeds his stamina roll and doesn’t fall unconscious.
    Also I ask if there is anything of interest in the room. Let’s not forget Furi has his axe destroyed, and fights with a hatchet!
    Q: Are there weapons in the room?
    A: Yes
    Q: Are there axes?
    A: No

    Furi comes upon what looks like a dwarven armory. It’s in ruins though and has been plundered by the orcs, only a few clubs remain in the weapon racks.
    As he looks around, he hears a ‘click’ he has stepped on a tile that moved just slightly but Furi knows dwarven craftsmanship. This is a trap.
    He tries to jump away but he fails to do so in time. A flaming liquid bursts from the floor upwards and he catches on fire. He starts rolling on the floor to extinguish it, but in the end he is scathed from the flames. Syriholm has been unforgiving to him as to his ancestors.


    Atiel is at the bottom of the chasm. Alarm roll: 1: She encounters another orc patrol!
    Her sneak skill is again successful and she passes again undetected.

    Atiel moves on, and at the bottom of the chasm she hears shouts. She quickly jumps into a ditch and soon sees orc boots passing in front of her. Another close call, but she is so much closer to the exit now!


    Furi doubles back to take the other fork in the path.

    Furi: Alarm roll: 3: No encounter


    Atiel reaches the entrance with the pillars. Alarm roll: 2: No encounter

    Atiel finally reaches the pillared entrance to Syriholm. She’s just a few steps away from leaving the ruins.


    Furi: Hex roll: 8: goto 19: BBEG!
    Story clock: 71, but doesn’t matter anymore.

    Q: Are there orc guards?
    A: Yes, and there is also an orc shaman.
    Intervention: Entity positive
    Q: Is it Furi?
    A: No
    Q: Is it Gorkil?
    A: Yes, the shaman has brought him a cart of gifts.
    Q: How many orcs? (1D)
    A: 8++!
    Q: Can Furi jump down to grab the great axe?
    A: No it requires at least one move?
    Q: Can Furi jump down on the cart of gifts?
    A: Yes, and, it’s so filled up he can climb on its top and get down undetected.

    Furi follows the second fork in the path through a dark unused corridor.
    As he reaches the end he hears sound of brute merriment. Drums banging and orcish laughter.
    Slowly he creeps on, and finds himself in a balcony overlooking the Syriholm throne room.
    Sitting on the throne is a black skinned orc with curved tusks. He watches in joy the festivities. This must be Gorkil.
    Entering the throne room is an orc with a bag of potions hanging from a net on his belt and various small feathers and bones tied to its garments. ‘An orc shaman’ Furi thinks.
    The shaman has brought with him a cart full of potions, mushrooms and trinkets that has been parked right under Furi’s balcony.
    To appease Gorkil, the shaman has also brought a pair of goblin dancers. The sound of the drums by a goblin musician give the rhythm and they dance to it in what the orcs must think is a sexual dance, as they seem entranced by it.

    Since Furi is so severely outnumbered and wounded, he will climb down to the cart and drink a potion. Again I turn to the dragon quest deck of cards and draw a Dragon’s Blood potion which increases strength. I roll and find that it will increase strength by 3D!
    So Furi’s Might is as good as if he wasn’t wounded.
    He gets down spends his Fate Point and charges at Gorkil!

    Furi slowly climbs down into the shaman’s cart. The orcs are captivated by the goblin dancers and don’t seem to notice Furi descending from the shadows. Once inside he picks up a weird blue vial and gulps down the content. ‘If it’s good for Gorkil it can’t hurt me’ he thinks.
    Within seconds he feels an inner fire, a rush, and invigorating strength. He draws his hatchet and with a loud roar that sounded like a dragon awoke, he charges to the throne. The orcs looking at him in disbelief.
    A disfigured burned up dwarf, his beard flailing wildly, bloody wounds still evident on his body, letting of an inhuman warcry as he furiously charges towards them.
    Gorkil manages to grab the great axe in the time it takes Furi to cover the distance between them. He swings the axe horizontally, but the berserk dwarf jump high and avoids the blow while simultaneously he brings down his hatchet to Gorkil’s head, severing it at the base of the neck.

    Considering what just transpired (their chieftain slaughtered in an instant by a mysterious berserk dwarf) I think that the orcs may flee, may attack Furi, or even each other to become the new chieftain (orc animosity rules from warhammer).
    So I ask.
    Q: Do the orcs fight Furi?
    A: No, and they fight each other for the chieftains spot.

    With Gorkil dead the orcs pause for a moment, as Furi lifts his grandfathers great axe from the headless body.
    Then they start snarling and growling. Within seconds each orc has started attacking the orc next to him.
    Furi has heard about how the toughest orcs became guards to chieftains and warbosses waiting for their chance to rise to the spot. Now they fight for the spot. They won’t bother with the dwarf.

    There is still the matter of the shaman. Sometimes shamans don’t care about power, so I will ask again.
    Q: Does the shaman attack Furi?
    A: Yes, and he won’t roll to see if he is intimidated by the bloody display. He is committed.

    The shaman does not seem affected by the squabbling of the orc big ones. He turns his attention to Furi. He pulls a curved serrated blade that drips with a red liquid and slashes at him.

    So Furi needs to kill the Shaman before the orc big ones kill each other and a new boss emerges who will hunt him down. If Furi is out of the throne room before this then the new orc boss will use its resources to establish rule. Otherwise it will try to eliminate the dwarf who killed the previous boss as a sign of dominance.

    Furi hacks the shaman badly who barely scratches him. But it’s enough for the poison to establish and cause him discomfort as it numbs him down. The potion of dragons blood he imbibed earlier seems to counter the effects of the poisoned blade.
    In the meantime orcish swords clash. Three orcs our of eight are down dead or mortally wounded.

    The fighting continues among all parties without much of a result apart from some scratches.

    But in the next few seconds Furi brings down the frenzied shaman as two more orcs are downed by their competition.

    I roll for Furi to climb up so that he can return from the way he came. Success.

    Not losing a chance, Furi climbs up the cart and back into the balcony as the three remaining orcs spill blood further…


    Out in the woods a wounded dwarf can barely keep his footing. Furi stumbles towards a small campfire in the distance. A figure approaches, and as he falls down from wounds and exhaustion he can almost discern the face of Atiel. The elf didn’t abandon him completely.
    The next day, a bandaged dwarf and
    his elf companion ride out. A relic great axe in possession, an oath fulfilled, and the memories of friends gone forever.

    Wow didn’t see that coming. The dwarf managed to get his family heirloom back, against all odds.

    Debriefing:
    I think my endeavor wasn’t completely successful, it was interesting though and I learned a lot from my mistakes.
    After 6 hexes, the party was decimated and I thought that the fun was over. Despite that, the story part of the hexflower kicked in. A side passage allowed Furi to reach the throne room after having to pass only alarms and traps! What a turn of fate!

    Mistakes:
    Low fantasy and dungeon crawling don’t mix unless you take it into account. So I didn’t want to have healing potions, clerics casting blessings and wizards casting fireballs. That’s a problem when you go into a dungeon. You need resources. The party strength is drained and needs recovery and healing one wound level at each camping, just ain’t gonna cut it.

    MiniSix and OpenD6, StarWarsD6 are not suited for party soloing even when streamlined with the success counts system that I homebrewed. MiniSix especially has a really high dice count. Furi and Cane for example had 7 and 6 dice respectively on their attacks and 8 dice on their damage. Add to that rhe other two part members, the opposed rolls and the enemy attacks, I was drowning in dice rolls. I won’t be using this game system again for dungeon crawls or for large combats.

    I don’t know the balance of MiniSix. I found it hard to balance the encounters, and sometimes my party felt either overpowered or nerfed.
    I had a feeling of 2D attributes, 3D skills for mooks and about 1D-2D higher for PCs and NPCs. At least that’s how Star Wars D6 is set up. But in MiniSix the numbers are way off in a higher range. I had the feeling many times that the combat was wrong.

    Being both story hexcrawl GM and player party at the same time is very taxing. There were just too many things to take into account. Since I was missing the tables that a traditional dungeon generator uses,
    I had to tap into my creativity and the Oracle as well as make PC decisions. That was tough. Bookkeeping was a mess (did I point out I’m lazy?), and I’m sure I failed to take into account some wound disadvantage at one time or two.

    Things I enjoyed:
    I found that the concept was fun and easy to run. I had traps, encounters, a story, and a dungeon not restricted by normal boundaries, while at the same time the randomness allowed for surprises. Patching with doubles allows for some tactics on the player part, and I was lucky to use this mechanic and find the BBEG when all seemed lost!
    The alarm clock mechanic seems okay as well as the story resolution clock mechanic. They may need fine tuning in the future.

    Overall experience: At times I was bored, at times I was frustrated, and at times I really wanted to see what would happen next. The Fate point mechanic saved the day, as in the Night of the Blood adventure I played. It’s quite strong but it gives a nice cinematic effect, and that’s really what it’s about. If I switch systems I’m going to miss it.

    If you think it’s interesting I can upload a second version with all the game system roll mechanics included.

     
  • giorgis 11:59 pm on October 3, 2019 Permalink | Reply  

    The ruins of Syriholm – S1E02 

    Hexflower dungeon crawling

    Hex Roll: 9: Goto 1: CREATURE
    Alarm +1

    The party moves on, Erias scouting ahead, with Furi following behind. Atiel and Cane act as rearguard.
    The path they follow leads them away from the large segregation of orcs in an effort to find somewhere to camp.
    They open the doors to a still standing dwarven building and set camp inside.
    Cane tends to Ariel’s wound, using healing herbs he carries with him. He removes the arrow and cleans the wound. Cane then boils some of the leaves of the healing herbs and puts the bandages in them, with which he covers the wound. He manages to help fix some of the damage done, though Atiel is still hurt.
    “Thank you young one.” Atiel says in gratitude.
    Cane just smiles.

    Now here is evident the advantage of using an event generated dungeon crawl. Instead of having a room with creatures, I decided that the scene will be empty, the team will have a chance to camp and rest, but they will be ambushed by creatures!
    I think that this gives a nice story like progression in the dungeon.

    I look up at the MiniSix fantasy bestiary and choose the giant rat as the most likely creature. I thought it would be easy to counter…
    I remove one ration from the party and roll to see at whose shift the rats will appear. It’s at Erias, that’s good, as a thief he has good perception.
    I roll 1D rats and get 6! I also roll to see if Erias notices the rats approach, and he fails! Woe to him.
    Also I made an on the fly call and decided that the rats would be able to attack him all at once. Have you noticed how they create a swarm and you can’t discern one from the other? They can fit their bodies in the tiniest spaces. That would be true for the gigantic variety. So here goes the description of the combat without game mechanics.

    The party is sleeping and the halfling is bored, counting his sling bullets. Unbeknownst to him, six giant rats crawl behind him and jump right on him biting and slashing with their claws.
    One rat has bit his neck, while another scratched his face. Under the gashing blood, he manages to let of a cry. “Help!”.
    The party is on their feet at once, drawing weapons and charging at the monstrous animals.

    The elf ranger quickly gets to her senses. Elves are light sleepers after all, and shoots an arrow into one of the creatures.

    Q: Do the rats keep attacking Erias? (Likely)
    A: Yes

    They haven’t managed to move an inch, and the rats keep gnawing at the poor halfling, who loses consciousness, as they keep eating him.

    Furi, still dizzy from his sleep, charges at the rats, and swings his great axe, but he misses by a mile and hit the hard stone dwarven table instead, bending his axe blade beyond use.

    Cane follows up with a hard swing at a rat, hacking it at the abdomen.

    Atiel keeps shooting arrows into the rats, but they seem to only sting the giant beasts.
    Some rats keep chewing at the dead halfling while others turn to their attackers, barely managing to scratch the furious dwarf.
    Furi draws his hatchet and incapacitates one of the rats, sending it into oblivion. Cane hacks at another one, wounding it so much that it turns and flees.
    Atiel stings another rat with her arrows which turns and jumps at her even if she is in the back beyond Furi and Cane. It slashed at her arm, wounding her further.
    One of the rats keeps eating at the halfling body.
    The remaining 2 rats fail to harm the warriors, who parry their blows with their weapons.
    Furi kills the rat that charged at Atiel with a hit to the neck, while Cane thrusts his bastard sword into the ribs of another rat, putting it down.
    Atiel sends another arrow to the rat that chews their dead companion, but it keeps at its task.
    Furi, locked in combat with one of the rats, finds an opening and slashes open its belly, as Cane brings down his sword to the rat Atiel targeted. She finally kills it with a well placed arrow to the ear.

    Cane rushes to Erias to see if he can be treated, but soon realizes he is dead. He closes his eyes and covers him with his cloak.
    “Noo!” Furi cries out as Atiel lets of a whimp and sheds a tear.
    No one speaks, as they dig a makeshift grave and put a large stone slab on top to protect the body from scavengers.
    Finally they compose themselves and Furi says a few words. “I shall forever carry your name with honor Erias Chily. You perished true to your oath, true to your ancestors. Unfortunately your debt was relayed in blood. May your last journey be without peril.”

    Maybe I miscalculated the giant rats strength. Maybe it was Erias unlucky Perception roll. In any way I had my first party death, and I will have to see how there will be progress without a thief to disarm traps and pick locks in the party.

    Here I decided to introduce a story clock mechanic. Add up the hexflower numbers rolled. If it’s greater than or equal to 100, then the story concludes and the next hex is the BBEG no matter what.

    Roll: 7: Goto x,
    Reroll: 9: Goto 6: PRISONER
    Alarm level +1: 2

    So I decide that the prisoner is going to be an NPC.
    I roll on UNE Confident tradesman who seeks academia.
    I roll a race and get halfling (Ruled out elves and dwarves due to enmity with orcs) and a name generated is Sonard Tunnel.
    Sonard is a halfling tradesman who seeks the lost tomes of Syriholm smithing. He is so confident in his abilities to trade that he tried to trade with the orcs, who found the entire concept funny and kept him alive as prisoner.

    The party, with heavy hearts and one less member, moves on. As they walk through the abandoned streets and pathways they detect brutish orc laughter.
    They draw weapons and close stealthily towards the noise. Furi and Cane go in front, while Atiel follows up, a dozen meters behind.
    Around a large fire four orcs are relaxing. In the middle of the group is a short person, a halfling, wearing fancy clothing and a hat with a feather. One of the orcs stands, towering above the halfling.
    “Tell me again Sonard! What did you expect from us in return? Bank notes from Gorkil?” The orcs burst in laughter, but the halfling is unafraid.
    “As I said before, Gashak, the stones you relinquished from my possession are a mere portion of what I intend to pay if you bring me the Tomes of Steel by Bari Turison.” He replies and the orcs burst in laughter again.

    Clouded by his hatred, Furi charges at the ambushed orcs, without a signal to Cane who, startled, follows up right after.
    Furi’s hatchet sinks deep into Gashak’s arm, splitting the bones and getting stuck. Gashak tries to remove the hatchet but the pain doesn’t let him and he cries out.
    Cane, startled fumbles as he charges and drops his sword a mere meter in front of him with a loud clanging noise.
    Atiel lets off an arrow which strikes the air.
    The three other orcs gang up on Cane. Two swords thrust through his torso and shoulder, and he drops down, spitting blood from his mouth.

    I roll to see what Sonard will do, giving (1: help orcs, 2-5: do nothing, 6: help the party) and roll a 6.

    Sonard pulls out a hidden stiletto from his hat and stabs an orc, wounding it’s left arm.

    Furi puts his foot on Gashak and pulls his hatchet. Then he rebounds with a second hit on the arm, spewing black blood everywhere, as Gashak falls.
    Atiel sinks an arrow into one of the orcs, who, with his fellow, turns and attacks the halfling. Sonard sucks from one sword slash, but a thrust from the other orc, pierces his abdomen through and through. The halfling clutches his belly and drops.
    The last orc, seeing Gashak down, growls and strikes at Furi from behind, hacking at his chest, severely wounding the dwarf.

    Furi exchanges blows with two orcs, but no one manages to get an opening. In the meantime, the orc that killed Sonard turns his attention to the downed barbarian, finishing off Cane with a thrust through the lungs.

    Atiel keeps sinking arrows into the orcs, one of which drops after having three arrows stuck on his torso.
    Frustrated, the two orcs and Furi keep fighting, but in the end, the stout dwarf emerges victorious, slaying one orc after the other.

    Furi kneels before his fallen comrade. Cane was killed in such a cowardly manner. Atiel breaks down in tears.
    “Let’s give him a ceremony worthy of a warrior.” Furi says and proceeds to build a bonfire for Cane’s funeral.
    They lay the barbarian on top, with his sword held between his hands. At the side they set the halfling who fell by his side, and light the fire.
    As the flames engulf them, Atiel speaks final words. “Few fought so bravely against such odds. May you find peace amongst your ancestors Cane!”.
    They stand in silence until the flames have devoured the bodies.
    Atiel looks at their wounds and turns to Furi. “Shall we abandon quest, Furi Grinarson?”.
    “Then they will have died for naught.” Furi replies.
    “As will we, unless we tend to our wounds. Let us leave and return anew another day.” She counters.

    I roll opposed persuasion and I get a failure on her part with a complication on Furi so I decided they will part ways.

    “I release you from your oath Atiel Nerdalye. Leave. I will find honor or die trying.” Furi says.
    She leans down and kisses him on the forehead. “As you wish. Farewell. May you find what you seek.”

    Two dead party members and the party split!
    Furi will press on, seemingly to his death, while Atiel will try to escape.
    But she is too deep in the dungeon and the alarm level has risen to 2. There is a 15% chance for each hex that she passes through that she may encounter orc hunting parties. The chance may further increase based on Furi’s actions deeper in the dungeon.
    In the meantime I am gathering pros and cons of the experience with the dungeon crawl I tried and will present all of them in the next (and probably final) episode.

     
  • giorgis 9:59 am on October 1, 2019 Permalink
    Tags:   

    The ruins of Syriholm – S1E01 

    Hexflower dungeon crawling

    Hex roll: 8: Goto 7: ENCOUNTER
    Q: Is it orcs? (Likely)
    A: Yes, and they are boar riders
    Q: How many? (1D)
    A: 2
    I will roll Wit for both groups. Whoever succeeds has noticed the other group first.
    Party: 1-
    Orcs: 2
    So I decide that since the orcs noticed the party first, they will attack first automatically gaining initiative.

    The party goes through the ruined entrance to Syriholm. Huge columns of dwarven craftsmanship once marked the pathway, but now they lie in ruins, their sharp edges chipped, their blocks overturned and the statues and engravings crushed to pieces.
    Furi touches the stones as sadness and hatred overcomes him. “This used to be the home of my people. Oh what fate befell them!”
    Atiel puts her hand on his shoulder. “What is no more of flesh needn’t worry you child of the mountains. They are with the rest of your ancestors in spirit and in memory now.”
    The dwarf calms for a moment.
    Suddenly they hear a loud gallop, snorting and a scream “Waaaagh!” and Cane sees for the first time in his life orcs!
    Hideous humanoids with green skins and an ape like face. Tusks protrude from their jaws, and they are riding boars, charging towards the party!

    Since this is heavy on combat, to facilitate easier reading (and less transcribing from paper to electronic notes on my part) I will not be writing down the combat rolls, and only describing the combat instead.

    One of the orcs charges at Furi, but the skilled dwarf uses his great axe to parry the spear and the boar tusks. He follows up with an overhead swing, finding the orc straight at the chest, severely wounding him.
    The other orc has encircled the group from the other side and charges at Atiel. Lacking the sword skill, she jumps out of the way, unable to counteract.
    The Halfling tries to hack at the boar, but his dagger barely makes a scratch on the thick furry hide.
    Cane is at a loss, but recovers. He draws his bastard sword and hacks at the orc who missed Atiel, but the strike just nicks the humanoid.

    The orc rider now switches target and tries to ram his spear into Erias. He hits the Halfling, but it seems the orc miscalculated and the cloak took the brunt of the hit, leaving him unscathed. The boar tries to bite a chunk off the Halfling, but he evaded the attack.
    Furi makes another attack at the wounded orc, this time bringing it down.
    The other orc now turns his attention to the human who hit him, thrusting his spear with enormous speed. Cane through an incredible feat, turns around, and the spear just scratches his right leg.
    Atiel, out of the fray, carefully draws her bow, and shoots an arrow to the remaining orc. It pierced through its spear arm, causing a serious bleeding.
    As the creature screams, Cane loses no moment and slashes at its right leg with such strength, that he chops it off.

    Now the board without riders are frustrated, and the party gains initiative.
    Furi hacks at the boar in front of him, almost cutting it in half.
    The rest of the party try to bring the other boar down, but it’s stronger than they expected, lashing back at them unsuccessfully.
    Cane finally thrusts his bastard sword between its lungs, delivering a mortal blow.

    “What are these green skinned devils?” Cane asks as he clears his blade.
    “Orcs” Furi says as he looks around to see if there are more of them.
    “They thought we would be easy game. They will learn the name of Furi Grinarson.”

    Hex roll: 11: Goto 9: prisoner
    Q: Are there guards? (Likely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Are the prisoners slaves?
    A: Yes, and they’re miners
    Q: Are the prisoners dwarves?
    A: No, but they are from all the races

    The party moves trough the ruins silently watching for any sign of orcs. Then, the path they were following with the pillars comes to an abrupt end in front of a gaping chasm. Once there was a bridge here, as the few remaining stones dictate, but it has collapsed since.
    Erias lifts his hand, gesturing for silence. Now they can all discern the clanging sound of metal upon stone.
    They follow a stairway going down to the bottom of the chasm. Before coming too close, they see the root cause of the noise.
    Several demihumans chained are mining the rocks. Their sorry state barely reminds of what race they belong to. Their bones almost protruding from their skin. These men and women look like living skeletons.
    Furi clenches his hands on his axe handle and steps forward, but Erias grabs him. “Wait a moment master dwarf.” He says and points at the guards.

    Q: Are the guards orcs?
    A: No, but they are goblins
    Q: Are they alert?
    A: No
    Q: How many slaves? (3D)
    A: 5
    Q: How many guards? (1D)
    A: 3

    Short green skinned humanoids with pointy ears, red eyes and sharp teeth, holding spears and shields are guarding the prisoners.
    “I will try to free the prisoners.” Erias whispers. “If the guards get a whiff of me, take them out.”

    Again I won’t be describing all the game mechanics, only Oracle rolls.

    The halfling goes past the goblins unnoticed and with his lock picks manages to set a slave free from his manacles.

    Q: Does the slave make noise?
    A: No, but he tries to escape at once when free

    With his feet free, the slave doesn’t waste a moment and starts running. Before the goblins realize what occurred, the party is read for action.
    Erias backstabs one goblin with his dagger and it screams in pain.
    Atiel shoots a carefully aimed arrow right through its right arm, gashing it open.
    Then from cover, Cane and Furi charge at the humanoids. Cane severs a goblins leg at its base while Furi does the same at its friend.
    Within seconds the goblin guards were decimated.

    “These small orcs didn’t stand a chance!” Cane points out smiling as he observes the dismembered corpse in front of him.
    “They’re called goblins.” Erias corrects Cane who doesn’t seem to pay any heed.
    The party liberated the slaves who can’t believe their luck, and points them to the way out.
    “Tell the dwarves of Khizdumunz that Furi Grinarson sent you! They will take good care of you.” Furi instructs then.

    Q: Do the slaves have any important information to share?
    A: Yes, but obstacles need to be overcome first.
    I decide it’s going to be a path leading from hex 17 directly to 19 without rolling.

    A downtrodden slave approaches Furi as they leave. “Are you heading further in?” He asks.
    “Aye, I am after Gorkil.” Furi responds and the slave’s eyes widen.
    “Then be careful. If you get past the troll, look for a small side passageway to your right. It leads directly to Gorkil’s quarters. It is said he wants to monitor his troll friend closely.” The slave adds.

    Hex roll: 10: Goto 3: guardian
    Q: Is the guardian humanoid or monster?
    A: Humanoid

    The party moves onward in the bottom of the chasm, and they reach the other side, and start climbing the stairs up.
    Once on top they face tall walls with towers and gatehouses.
    “Syriholm keep starts here.” Furi says. “I suggest we keep low and try to enter through the third gatehouse. Our engineers often criticized its weak spots.”
    The party nods and does as Furi proposed. Slowly the enter the gate tower, only to come facing one of the largest orcs they have ever seen. The orcs first sees Furi and growls, but as it sees Atiel, it’s eyes glisten with rage and it lets off a loud roar.
    As it rises, orc archers appear in the balconies inside of the gatehouse.

    Q: How many archers? (1D)
    A: 2

    Atiel and Erias shoot arrows and sling bullets at the archers, but even though they hit, they bounce of their leather armour.
    Cane looks at the big guy, but he doesn’t flinch. He lets of a roar as well and charges at it. He swing the sword high, hitting the orc at the head. Cutting of a chunk and sending the huge body to the ground.
    Furi looks to the stairs to the balconies.

    Q: Are there stairs inside of the gatehouse leading to the balconies?
    A: Yes
    I decide it takes one round to go up.

    Furi climbs up the stairs while the two orc archers shoot at the elf. Their arrows find their target true. And Atiel, severely injured, falls back to cover.

    Furi charges at the orc archer in the balcony, hacking at its left arm, as it screams in pain.
    Cane climbs the stairs up as well to the other orc.
    Erias tried to hit with his sling but the level difference doesn’t help him and he misses.
    The orc fighting Furi tries to flee down the stairs, but it stumbles and falls.
    The other orc shoots a third arrow into Atiel, who tries to keep standing, but she falls down.

    Q: Do the balconies connect?
    A: No

    Furi, brings down his axe on the head of the downed orc, killing it instantly.
    Cane has reached the other balcony, slashing at the leg of the orc who wounded Atiel.
    Erias tried to shoot from below but his shots keep missing.

    The orc tries to counterattack Cane, but it’s skill is no match. Cane headbutts it, and in until it recovers, swings his sword down on its head, splitting it in half.

    As they recover from the battle, Cane diagnoses successfully the wound and the arrow.

    Q: Is it poisoned?
    A: No

    “We must rest and tend to her wound!” Cane expresses his concerns.
    “We must press on while we still have the element of surprise!” Furi counters.
    “You’re both right. We need to rest, but we can’t do it here. This is an orc pass. We must press on until we find a better spot, to tend to Atiel.” Erias mediates between the party.

    Currently the hexflower can draw forever. To make things more interesting I will introduce new alarm mechanics. When I roll 2d6 for the hex flower, I will roll a black and a white die.
    If the black die is greater than the white die, increase alarm level by one. If it’s doubles, decrease it by one.
    Events like alarms, fleeing enemies, etc can ofc increase or decrease the alarm levels accordingly.

    How do the alarms come into play? If the alarm level is

    I am ending the first part here.
    What I liked: The quick and graphic combat resolution. The wound levels on the D6 system are easy to monitor, semi realistic and deadly.
    What I didn’t like: The mini-six assignment of combat skills. The melee combat skills are under Might (Strength, Physique, Toughness). Which means there is an imbalance there, as the same attribute is used for to hit, to parry, to damage and to resist damage. The dwarf with Might 5D (and a bit less the barbarian with might 4D) are severely overpowered compared to other foes and their agile teammates. Add to this the +3D of a 2H weapon, they are war machines. I could of course homebrew this, but then I would have to rework the stock characters that I use from the book, so I stuck with it.
    What needs improvement: The hexflower mechanics. That’s the reason I’m doing this after all. I don’t want it to drag forever, so I need to add mechanics to drive the game forward. I will be testing more rules in the future.
    Overall mixed results. I like the setting, the choice of characters and the dungeon, but I feel like it’s bland at times. I won’t give it up yet since it’s an experiment that I want to see to an end. I feel that there is a lack of story that is to be expected with dungeon crawls and I’m not certain it’s to my liking.

     
  • giorgis 12:29 pm on September 29, 2019 Permalink
    Tags:   

    The ruins of Syriholm – S1E00 

    Hexflower Dungeon Crawling

    It is late night at the Black Cask, a poor inn at the crossroads between Blyne Vale and Slate Hills.
    Most townsfolk have retired for the night and the servant girl has begun sweeping the floor. The fireplace is lit, but the innkeeper hasn’t fed it another log, in the hopes of casting away the odd looking trio sitting at one of his tables in the corner.
    The door opens and a gust of wind sweeps in. Cane enters the silent bar room. He is a muscular towering young man with a stern look on his face. His black hair falls long upon the thick wolves hide covering his shoulders. He takes a quick look around, and without a pause, walks steadily to the party.
    He eyes them all one by one. What a weird company he thinks. Two short people and a blond woman, all cloaked as if they are hiding something.
    He towers upon the table, pulls out a broken part of an amulet from his pouch and puts it on the table with a loud thump.
    “I was summoned” He says. “Now which one of you is Furi Grinarson?”
    One of the two short figures, the more stoutly built one, and Cane can clearly see his red long braided beard.
    “I am” he responds in a bass voice, and joins the broken part with three other similar ones, completing an amulet. Furi introduces the company.
    “These are Atiel Nerdalye and Erias Chily, summoned like you. And your name is?” He asks.
    “Cane” the barbarian replies and pulls a chair and joins them. “Innkeeper!” He shouts. “A pint of ale!”
    The trio looks worried. “We try to keep a low profile you brute!” Atiel whispers scolding him.
    “A low profile? You must be joking. There isn’t anyone in 10 leagues who won’t be talking about you lot tomorrow, and no, low height doesn’t mean low profile.”
    “Don’t be insolent! You have been summoned to pay a debt” Furi snarls, but pauses as the innkeeper brings the ale.
    Cane nods. As the innkeeper leaves, Furi continues. “My grandfather helped your ancestors. As gratitude they swore an oath for their line to help him or his descendants when called upon. Now is the time to fulfill the oath.” Furi takes a breath, then continues with a tone of sadness in his voice.
    “My ancestors used to live in Syriholm, from where we were driven away 100 years ago when the orcs broke through our defenses. My mother left with the refugees to Khizdumunz but my grandfather stayed behind to cover the retreat and perished.
    About a month ago I learned that his great axe was sighted in the hands of Gorkil the Bleak, an orc warlord with a den in the ruins of Syriholm. This is a family relic. My grandfather slew a troll with it. It is a desecration and must be stopped. I ask you to help me recover it. Then you are free from your oath.”

    “Orcs? Trolls? Khiz… you speak of things I do not know of” Cane responds.
    “Did you have to summon the human as well?” Atiel asks with a tone of superiority as if speaking about a child.
    “Human? why what are…?” Cane pauses as he finally sees clearly under the hoods and realizes why the party is cloaked. Fairy people, dwarves, elves and halflings. He had heard fairy tales before but he thought they were stories to keep children in bed at night. He downs the ale in a big gulp and wipes the foam from his mouth. Atiel smiles at how the haughty barbarian is at a loss.

    “I will do as asked!” Erias says.
    “The favor must be repaid. I will join you on your quest Furi Grinarson!” Atiel adds in a soft voice.
    An awkward long pause passes as Cane tries to get a grip of what just transpired.
    “Cane?” Furi asks.
    Quickly Cane gets his wits. “I may not know what is asked, but I am no oathbreaker. By Baran, I will join you!”

    The party rests for the night at the Black Cask, and in the morning, to the innkeepers relief, they ride away to their quest.
    Two weeks later they reach the entrance to the ruins of Syriholm.

    This is the storyline setting for my Hexflower dungeon crawling adventure.
    After a couple terribly failed attempts to run it with only one character, I switched gears and introduced a party.
    In order to test my system I will be using a completely stereotypical fantasy party.
    Dwarf warrior.
    Elf ranger.
    Halfling thief.
    Human barbarian.
    The setting will be mid-low fantasy.

    I will be using this hexflower with the following results.

    1. CREATURE
    2. ALARM
    3. guardian
    4. creature
    5. encounter
    6. PRISONER
    7. ENCOUNTER
    8. ENCOUNTER
    9. prisoner
    10. CAMP
    11. creature
    12. TRAP
    13. alarm
    14. alarm
    15. OBJECTIVE
    16. objective
    17. GUARDIAN
    18. trap
    19. BBEG

    For now I will be asking Oracle questions in order to populate each room, but maybe in the future I will set up tables and use them as I go.

    Navigation:
    a. 12
    b. 2-3
    c. 4-5
    d. 6-7
    e. 8-9
    f. 10-11

    Rules:
    Room for room I will be rolling 2d6 to get the next room main concept according to the hexflower.
    One can double back to a previous room but there is a chance for a random encounter. You roll 1d6 and if it’s under the alarm level of the dungeon, then there is an encounter.
    A roll of doubles means there is a fork to the path, so one can double back and follow (new roll) this path instead. Another doubles on the same hex, means there is a third fork… etc

    Rations.
    Each character has enough rations, medicines and other consumables, according to their skills, equal to 3 times their Wit dice plus pips.

    For the game system I will be using MiniSix barebones, homebrew with a Success pool count system.
    Wild dies will explode on 6, and have a mishap on 1. On mishap you reroll. If it’s a 6 you get a complication, otherwise it’s a penalty (-1 success).
    Regular and wild die succeed on a roll of 3+.
    +1 pip die succeeds on a roll of 6, and +2 pip die succeeds on a roll of 5+. When added to a +3, the pip die succeeds on a roll of 4+.

     
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