A monster’s bounty – A weird cyberpunk fantasy adventure – S1E05 

Brief summary: Lt. Athen Smarte is a Hunter. Solitary warriors who hunt down and dispatch warp monsters. In the last session she was assigned a mission to recover data from an abandoned Hunter base before the corporate antagonists got to them. She’s on site, supported by a hired hacker.

I just discovered solipsism which may be the key to unlock my adventure in this vaguely defined setting. I’m going to give it a go, and run this mission with this.
For the Oracle, I will use solipsism’s oracle. If I feel confident, I may include False Presuppositions at double digits (11,22,33…) and Interventions from MUNE counting at +2 results.

I’m going to use the Chart 4, for a faster mission.
Defining the 4 Features
A – Ocano Point Base Gate (start here)
B – Barracks
C – Armory
D – Offices

Defining the 6 elements
a – Mission Data
b – Mao Hsai Goons
c – Goblins
d – Alarm
e – Weapon
f – Corpses

I start randomly at 0403

Go To: A (5750)
knowledge 0

7727 requires blue key
Outgoing Paths
B (6897) 0

I decide that there is some chance to gather some information about the site and find out if it has been used (knowledge adjective). Athen will roll her survival.

Athen: Survival (d6): Success+
Q: Are there any sings of goblin use? (Extremely Likely): 94: Exceptional Yes

Athen and Quinn are at the gatehouse gathering information. The base has been abandoned for so long, but there are some signs of use. Athen looks under the pile of dirt in the corner, and she discovers steel arrows and arrowheads. Barbed and crooked.
“Goblins” she mutters, and braces her sidearm, signaling Quinn to keep his head low.
The nearest building they can get to without risking being caught in the open is the barracks, so they make a path to it.

Go To: B (9647)
dark +1

The adjective is dark and the modifier is +1. I suppose that the darkness gives them plenty of cover. They have a +2 to their stealth rolls.

b identity +2
e occult -1
Outgoing Paths
9895 +1

The elements are Mao Hsai Goons with an Identity adjective at a modifier of +2 for Athen, and the Weapon with an occult adjective at a modifier of -1 for Athen.
I’ll check the Outgoing path after I have played out the scene.
So the weapon is something occult related, and the -1 modifier, makes me think it’s possibly cursed. In my mind this fits to be a goblin curved sword.

I’m not quite sure about the goons, so I’ll ask the oracle
Q: Are the goons alive?
A: Yes

As Athen and Quinn enter the barracks under the cover of darkness, they see flashes of light, coming from the far end. Someone is here. Athen peeks and sees some armed men, wearing corporate armor, looking around in the barracks. They are discussing about a curved wicked serrated blade that one of them is holding out.

I could have Athen try to overhear them, but I think she won’t risk it. After all, her mission’s the data. They will try to sneak past them.

Athen: Stealth (d6+2): Success+
Quinn: Stealth (d4+2): Success

Go To: D (4992)
neglect -1

Any Oracle questions in this part have a +1 modifier.

Athen and Quinn sneak past the mercenaries, and reach what seem to be the old Okano Base offices. They seem neglected and in total disarray. Computers destroyed. Monitors trashed and keyboards missing all the keys.

Outgoing Paths
9946 +2

Quinn looks at all the trashed gear and shakes his head as he sees even the results of a fire. “I doubt there’s something usable here. Even if I could link up, the corruption here would be immense.”
Athen nods. “Let’s keep looking. I don’t want to mess up because we failed to find a hidden terminal.

Go To: C (4141)
transformation 0

The main adjective here is transformation. Interesting.

f history 0
? alien -2
Outgoing Paths
5016 -2
6971 0
9056 0 requires a green key

We’re at the armory. Element f is Corpses and the adjective is history, so this is pretty straightforward. Maybe when the base was abandoned, they didn’t have the time to abandon everything and some hunters stayed behind to gather weapons from the armory and they were caught by the enemy and killed.
Now the ? is a random element with the alien adjective. I’m not thinking space aliens here, but something completely out of place.

So there are four categories of elements, I’ll try first to narrow it down.
I get description: rain, strange noises, an ocean breeze, radio signals.
Portent: School

The duo enter what seems to have been the armory. She flashes her torch around. No weapons here are useable anymore. They all are bent, broken or rusty.
What stops them with mouths agape, is what they see in the center of the room. A pile of corpses, rotting, one on top of the other. On the walls at the far end, surrounding the pile, scripts written in blood cover a tapestry of made of skin. As if someone was trying to take notes in an unknown language.
Athen had heard stories of orcs and goblin shamans who cast warp magic to have used an unknown alphabet.
But what makes her want to puke her guts, is what they see further. Some corpses have been dissected in a brutal manner, while others seem to have more than two arms or legs, and they seem fused as if they were connected while their owners where still alive.
Without thinking further, she grabs Quinn and gets out of, to the nearest door.

I choose to follow 5016, even if it’s at -2.

Dead End

Instructions state that: Dead End
Although there is a guaranteed Path to every location, some Paths lead nowhere. This is a
\Dead End.” If you hit a Dead End, you go nowhere. You are free to interpret a Dead End
any way you wish. You may wish to impose a consequence on your characters for hitting
a Dead End. For example, upon hitting a Dead End, your characters must return to the
beginning: \A”.

I choose that some dark warp magic has affected them. They need to make Vigor rolls at -4 (due to the -2 modifier) to resist it.

Both she and Quinn can barely walk out of the armory. Something in this place has really made their mind clouded. She feels so dizzy she stumbles outside.

Athen: Vigor (d8): Success++
Quinn: Vigor (d6): Success

So I give them the chance to return to A.

Weakened and dizzy, the duo returns to the gatehouse. They look at each other.
“Did…did you feel that too?” Quinn asks.
Athen nods. “It wasn’t just what we saw Quinn. The Orcs had some sinister magic at work here.”

Q: Is Quinn willing to go back in?
A: No

So Athen will have to persuade him.
Athen: Persuasion (d4): Failure

“Come, let’s go.” She gets her head back together and extends an arm to Quinn. He doesn’t take it and shakes his head. “I don’t care about the guild payment. I’m not going back in there. This was supposed to be a data snatch, not some occult ritual. I’m out of here Smarte. You’re on your own.”
Seeing Quinn walk away, the Lt. knows she can’t grab the data on her own. She can only hope the orcs didn’t leave anything intact. She holsters her sidearm and walks away.

Session Summary

It was a short session, but a breath of fresh air! Solipsism is a quite different way to run an adventure, but I was amazed at the flow. Yes it’s quite linear, but there are many options and variations that allow modability to suit different ways of play.
I really liked how I didn’t have to think too much to connect everything together, as the Master Table did all the work for me.
It’s a bit stronger on the narrative side, since it errs more on the side of CYOA gamebooks than freeform RPGs, but if one wishes they can start asking questions to the oracle to reduce it to a crunch.
Also I was worried there was going to be metagaming involved, but the adventure ended without me finding half the elements, so they possibly could never have been there (the data or alarm for example).