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  • giorgis 9:03 pm on December 21, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: RenegadeScout, Solo,   

    Renegade Fantasy Hammer 

    This is an attempt to play a Warhammer Fantasy universe battle with the Renegade Scout ruleset using 15mm miniatures.
    I’ll be going for a classic Elves vs Goblins skirmish battle, since these were part of the original WHFB4ed boxed set, and I want to pay tribute to it.
    It’s quite easy to translate the WHFB statistics into RS statistics, so I’ll start with these.

    MoMeSShSPoDeWPObAtDLeSInCUFWyrd
    MWSBSSTWIALdI+4LdI+3+1 per Magic User Level
    Conversion

    In RS there is ample freedom in organizing Squads, So I’ll field the following troops, using WHFB points costs.

    Orc Arrer Boyz – 4 (4 Bows)
    Orc Boyz – 6 (2 Javelins, 3 Shields)
    Orc Boss (Light Armor)
    Goblins – 7 (5 Shields)
    Goblins – 3 (3 Short Bows)
    Goblin Boss (Light Armor, 2 Weapons)
    Goblin Shaman
    Orc Big’Uns – 10 (10 Light Armor, 3 Shields, 2 2-H weapons, 3 2-Weapons)

    Base Cost: 155 1/2
    Equipment: 43
    Heroes: 65 1/2
    Total: 264

    Elf Archers – 6 (3 Light Armor, 3 Javelins, 6 Long Bows)
    Elf Warriors – 13 (5 2-H Weapons, 5 Shields, 5 Light Armor)
    2 Elf Mages
    Elf Champion (Light Armor, Shield)

    Base Cost: 176
    Equipment: 46
    Heroes: 83
    Total: 364

    Since the two forces have 100 points difference, I’ll be giving the Goblin force an Ogre and a Gigantic Spider, and this should bring the difference down by 90, to 10 points.


    Elwidris heard the horn sound the alarm. She questioned often the elders when they placed him in charge of this outpost, next to a remote farm of men and the remains of an old barracks building.
    In the distance, where the dark woods had consumed the ruins of an ancient temple, her keen elvish vision saw movement.
    She wasted no time and called Ladrione’s Stars, her elite warriors, to fight by her side. Celodhil, the sorcerer, joined her flank, while Elegor, another master of the magic arts, took the hill, along with the archers. The brave Turgali, warriors armed with bastard swords moved towards the farm, to cover the eastern part of the battlefield.


    Snaga was still dizzy from last night’s party. The shaman’s brew had hit him in the head. Lurtzog brewed a potent shroom ale. He still can’t believe he agreed to join force with Muzga’s orcs, and his friend, Radbug the ogre. With them orcs and goblins it was always a fight of superiority. Prove who’s the boss.
    He side glanced at the goblin shaman. Some spell must have been at work. But now he was already in the field marching his goblins towards the stinky elf lands, and he couldn’t back down, or he’d be the laughing stock of every goblin in the cave. Lurtzog even brought his pet spider, Boldush, with him, a beast that had the strength of ten orcs, or two trolls. He never was good in math, but better than Muzga.


    Turn 1

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    The battlefield

    Movement

    The two forces march against each other, closing in. The archers heading for high ground, while the melee combatants trying to stay in cover.


    Turn 2

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    Movement

    They close in further.

    Fire Combat

    The elf archers shoot at the ogre. 2 arrows hit, but the ogre isn’t wounded at the slightest.
    The orc arrer boyz shoot at the elf mage Elegor. One of the black arrows is jammed in his throat. The mage spews out blood as he falls down dead.

    Turn 3

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    Movement

    The forces are about to engage in melee combat.

    Fire Combat

    The elf archers shoot again at the ogre, one arrow lodges itself in the ogre’s chest, and it cries in pain.
    The orc arrer boyz now aim at the elf archers, but only one arrow finds it’s target, barely scratching an elf.
    The goblin archers shoot at Elwidris’ group but they all miss with their short ranged bows.

    Wyrd

    Lurtzog curses and spits trying hard to cast the spell to help Snaga’s mob, but fails.


    Turn 4

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    Movement

    The ogre and the orc mob led by Muzga are near the foot of the hill, while the orc big ‘uns and the Turgali clash in melee.

    Fire Combat

    The elf archers shoot again at the ogre, 2 arrows finding their target, but the ogre removes and breaks them in half like toothpicks. The orc arrer boyz shoot from the hill, and two arrows kill one elf archer, reducing their number to 5.
    The goblin shoot at the armored elf warriors, but both arrows that reach them, are stopped by the strong elvish wooden shields.

    Close Combat

    As the Big’uns fight the Turgali, there’s no clear victor or loser. One brave elf and one big orc perish in the fierce fight.

    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922222830433751080/IMG_0359.jpg
    Boldush cut an elf warrior in half with her pincers.

    Wyrd

    Lurtzog tries to cast a spell to assist Snaga’s goblins, but drops his runes.

    Morale

    All forces stand their ground.


    Turn 5

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    Movement

    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922243448436846672/IMG_0361.jpg
    Radbug closes in to the elf positions, Muzga is only a short distance behind, leading his band of orcs.

    Fire Combat

    The archers shoot another volley at Radbug, with two arrows hitting their target, and one wounding the big guy. He screams in pain, and roars at the puny elves.
    The orcs shoot at the tower, but their arrows hit the battlements. The goblins shoot at the Turgali, but once more, their small weapons prove to be no match.

    Close Combat

    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922244432521224192/IMG_0362.jpg
    Elwidris flanks Boldush and wounds the gigantic beast under its belly. The spider and the rest of the elves exchange blows, but noone manages to wound the other.
    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922245349555458078/IMG_0363.jpg
    Meanwhile, Celodhil has charged at the goblins and kills one of the small greenskins, while Snaga yells at them to press on.
    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922245859045965854/IMG_0364.jpg
    Another Turgali falls beneath the big’uns.

    Morale

    The goblins scared of Celodhil break and flee towards the ruins, even Snaga’s curses can’t keep them in line.
    The brave Turgali don’t live up to their name and bravely run away from the big’uns as well.
    Only Ladrione’s Stars hold their ground against the eight legged beast.


    Turn 6

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    The broken troops flee to cover

    Movement

    Celodhil pursues the goblins in the ruins, and the big’uns reach the fleeing elves. Meanwhile the ogre is a breath away from the elf archers at the tower.

    Fire Combat

    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922247903047733329/45508E60-54F6-47E8-935E-CB5E0495C968.jpg
    They all shoot in unison, and an arrow thrusts in the ogre’s eye. It reaches the centre of functions and drops motionless.

    The orc arrer boyz try to take revenge, but once more the fortifications save the elves.
    The goblins shoot at the elvs fighting the spider, but the nimble elves duck just in time to avoid the hail of arrows.

    Close Combat

    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922249117558767616/IMG_0368.jpg
    An orc slashes at a fleeing elf, killing him, his back turned.

    A handful of elves are in close combat with the spider, and dodge it’s blows, while one, manages to get a thrust in her soft underside, wounding her once more.

    Morale

    The Turgali recover and stop fleeing.


    Turn 7

    Priority

    The elves have priority.

    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922388844148559902/IMG_0371.jpg
    The Turgali, outnumbered, charge at their enemies
    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922391948613025792/IMG_0378.jpg
    Celodhil charges at Lurtzog while the goblins keep fleeing

    Movement

    The goblins keep fleeing, while Muzga’s orcs close in on the tower. The other fronts remain locked in combat more or less.

    Fire Combat

    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922256382470799410/IMG_0370.jpg
    Protected by enemy fire, the elf archers shoot at the approaching orc mob, but both arrows that reach their targets, hit the shield!

    Again, the orcs shoot at the tower, but their arrows hit the battlements. The goblins shoot at the Turgali, but yet again, their small weapons prove to be no match.

    Close Combat

    Seriously outnumbered, another Turgali falls against the big’uns.

    Meanwhile, Celodhil duels with Lurtzog, and kills the goblin shaman, decapitating him.

    Nearby Elwidris falls under the spider. Eager to make a quick meal, the beast receives another wound, from an elf warrior, aiming to seek revenge for their fallen champion.

    Morale

    Snaga bashes a couple of goblin heads, and they rally, turning back to face their enemy.

    At the other side of the battlefield, the one remaining Turgali runs for his life.


    Turn 8

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    Movement

    Celodhil charges at the goblin archers, but he’s flanked by the now rallied goblins of Snaga, and is in a tough fight.
    The last Turgali flees, but is caught by the big’uns who run faster. Meanwhile, Muzga’s orcs reach the elf archers on the tower.

    Fire Combat

    The elf archers shoot at the charging orcs, their arrows finding their targets, but the tough orcs are not hampered at all.
    The orc arrer boyz provide cover, shooting at the elfs, this time their arrows hit one, sending him to his death from the towertop to the ground.
    The goblins shoot at the Turgali, but yet again, their small weapons prove to be no match.

    Close Combat

    The elf archer tries to fend off the orc, he hits but can’t wound the thick skinned orc. The orcs outnumber him and finish him off. Further, the last Turgali, flanked, is killed by the orc gang.
    Celodhil kills the goblin archer he fights with, but nearby, another elf warrior perishes under the wounded spider’s legs, who still stands against the group of elves.

    Morale

    All troops hold their ground.


    Turn 9

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    Movement

    Celodhil switches direction to face the goblins coming up from behind.
    In the meantime, more and more orcs surround the tower.

    Fire Combat

    The few elf archers shoot at the orcs, but their arrows are too weak to cause any damage. They are shot at by the orc arrer boyz, and another elf falls down.
    Meanwhile the two remaining goblin archers shoot at the elf warriors against the spider, but they both miss.

    Close Combat

    At the woods, the gigantic spider tramples another one of the elves, and Celodhil falls to a curved goblin blade. The elves try to finish off the wounded spider, but she pushes off their weapons and parries with all her legs.
    At the tower, the elf archer at the base, fights with his back to the wall, and soon falls to the mob.

    Morale

    Ladrione’s Stars have had enough. Seeing the battle lost they flee away from the spider.
    The elf archers have nowhere to go, and they grit their teeth and keep fighthing.


    Turn 10

    Priority

    The elves have priority

    Movement

    An orc climbs to the top of the tower to face the last elf defender, while the fleeing elf warriors are caught up by the pursuing spider.

    Fire Combat

    The two remaining goblin archers shoot at the elf warriors against the spider, only one hits, but doesn’t manage to wound.

    The orc archers are out of range of any visible targets.

    Close Combat

    The orc clashes with the elf archer at the top of the tower but it’s a standoff.

    The spider doesn’t get any other elf under her web.

    Morale

    Ladrione’s Stars rally, and get back in the fight.


    Turn 11

    Priority

    The orcs have priority.

    Movement

    Another orc climbs up the tower, while below, the big’uns march towards the last remaining elf warriors, who join once more combat against the arthropod. Snaga’s goblins have closed the distance and charge the elves.

    Fire Combat

    The goblins shoot into the melee, one of Snaga’s goblins is hit as well as an elf, but only the elf warrior receives a deadly wound.
    The orc archers shoot at the elf warriors in the woods, but, the thick foliage prevents them from doing any damage.

    Close Combat

    One against two, the last elf archer falls to the orcs. The tower belongs to them now.
    The fighting in the woods comes to a standoff, as no side is winning, nor elves nor goblins.

    Morale

    Ladrione’s Stars, still hold their ground.


    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/627941499220525056/922411451648458762/IMG_0401.jpg
    The battle is over. The orcs are the masters of the battlefield.

    As the troll horn wicked sound is heard over the battlefield, Snaga smiles. He knows they have won. The elves retreat tactically, and he calls off his goblins. No need to lose any more of his troops to the elves. The battle is won and he’ll need them in case Muzga has second thoughts about their alliance, especially now that Lurtzog is dead. He looks at the wounded spider pet feasting on the corpses of elves and wonders if he’ll be able to keep it under control without the shaman.

    The last remaining elves hold their shields up and retreat, their face to the goblins. They lost many of their own today. They need to survive and report to their elders. From small skirmishes like this, greenskin hordes gather. They failed to stop them today, they must stop them tomorrow.


    Session Summary

    I was about to count the points cost remaining per side to declare the victor, but the orc victory is so obvious that there’s no point to do it.

    Back in the day I could field tons of orcs and goblins as their points cost was too low in comparison to other armies. It is very much possible that the points balance is off, and that’s the reason for the absolute victory today, without ruling out the effect of tactics and dice rolls.

    Due to the small table (60cm) and 15mm scale I decided to go with an inch to cm ratio, which made everything sooo slow, and that’s why I had to increase the duration of the battle. Next time I’m going to use a faster movement scaling.

    I also discovered the big difference between Rank and File and Skirmish. In rank and file you can move your units without much trouble as they move in unison. Here, moving one figure at a time, there were times were I had funnels and blocking of figures, which was quite fun and realistic. Frustrating but enjoyable.

    Now to the ruleset. First of all I’d like to state that this is an experiment. Renegade Scout as is, isn’t meant for fantasy or historical war gaming, it is meant for sci fi and I can see that it could also deliver modern themes.

    Since it’s the first time I used (and modified) the ruleset, there is a high probability that I may have missed or misused a rule, so take these with a grain of salt.

    The main combat resolution mechanic works fine and fast. In close combat I was missing a comparison of melee values between attacker and defender, but that’s only a minor point.

    The activation mechanic works well in most of the cases, even when solo. It was a tad bit difficult to follow up in close combat phase where the activation isn’t unit based as in the rest of the phases, but figure based. I think that even in social gaming, some sort of token for figure activations is necessary. But even so, it was a bit chaotic as you might switch focus on the battlefield from one side to the other between activations, as each player prioritises on where they feel they need to put their resources most. Nevertheless I managed to solo with around 50-60 figures in total without any tokens, which is quite a feat for the system, taking under consideration that it’s the first time I played with this ruleset, and not as is.

    Some rules are not relevant to the theme, like sheltering (never had to use it) and I could also feel the need to use some WHFB4e modifiers which felt missing, like casualties in morale tests.

    On the same regard, the Wyrd rules as-is have a quite different effect as a Magic system. I’ve had better results using my mages as heroes than as mages, but I have to note that the powers rolled weren’t of much use (Celodhil could teleport a unit in a random direction).

    Overall it was a fun experiment. I could compare against KPS but it wouldn’t be fair, as the latter is poised towards medieval combat. I enjoyed the narrative and I am eager to run more skirmish battles using either KPS or a Renegade Scout WHFB4e hybrid. It wouldn’t be too hard to fit the pieces of the puzzle in such a way that it works.

     
  • giorgis 3:54 pm on December 4, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Solo   

    Fringe Bounty Hunting – Ep01 

    A solo RPG adventure in the Unified Space setting using the Savage Worlds Deluxe Explorer’s Edition ruleset (this is the older SW version, but I have it on print and prefer it in several rules). I’ll be adding gear and information as required by both Five Parsecs from Home and the Savage Worlds Science Fiction Companion.

    First of all I decided to help a bit with the background and motivation and roll on the Five Parsecs From Home tables in Crew Genaration. So I get:
    Background: Orphan Utility Program
    Motivation: Loyalty

    I used BOLD waylays to write down a backstory:

    • Stale Power Play solved by The People
    • Eccentric The Wild solved by Strong Attribute
    • Unlikely Trap solved by Strong Attribute

    Unity Subject Short Record 9571483XD45-5.
    Assigned Name: Randy Barnes
    Species Classification: Human
    Estimated age: 23 TSY
    Registered Location: 6814 Hasta V; 8648 Anuradha System
    Outstanding Warrants: None
    Registered Infractions: 324X; 45D-1; 923
    Outstanding Infractions: None
    Height: 177 CM
    Mass: 82 KG
    Parent Records: Not Relevant; Orphan Utility Program Record 9934614123DFXa
    Licenses: 221 Basic Education; D2-Speeder License; 021 Sidearm Class II; 53F PPGear; 11-8 Enforcement

    Strength: d6, Agility: d6, Vigor: d6, Smarts: d6, Spirit: d6
    Skills: Driving d6, Fighting d6, Intimidation d6, Healing d4, Notice d4, Shooting d8, Streetwise d6, Survival d4
    Edges: Brawny, Quick
    Hindrances: Loyal, Phobia (Minor-Rodents)
    Gear: Body Armor, Blaster Pistol, Hover motorcycle (still on debt)

    Randy looked at the officer’s datapad display as the Unity law enforcer scanned his ID. All his life in just a few lines. Could these lines represent his story? No more than the lines on the palm of his hand could predict his future, like some pseudo-psykers try to con credits out of the pockets of unsuspecting passerbys.
    He could not remember his parents. All he knew is that he was taken in by a Unity Orphanage. The closest thing he had to a loving hug was a DR-B9 Upbringing Utility Droid. At least they had given the darn thing a teddy bear look and it was fluffy.
    As soon as he was of working age, he boarded a Class 9 Long Haul Freighter and jumped to the first Fringe world with breathable atmosphere. Hasta V was the first place that felt like home. He found work chasing some moon rats away from the fry-corn farms using a speeder. It was only his perseverance that helped him survive when the speeder brakes broke down and he was left stranded 5 days walk away from ‘civilization’.
    Life on the farms was not idyllic but it felt safe. Until Unity decided Hasta V was of no importance. They disbanded the Naval base and disappeared overnight. Soon after the first raiders appeared, who got what they wanted. Then again, and again. In the end the people of Hasta V decided to make a stand against the pirates. Blood. Chaos. Carnage. Unity was nowhere. The mercenaries they had hired to face off the raiders betrayed them. They trapped Randy and some other Fringe colonists in a warehouse, and he had to bend a durasteel lock with his hands to escape.
    That’s how he tore two muscles in his right arm. He had to replace the entire muscle and tendons with cybernetics. It still feels weird, but he’s stronger now.
    He could no longer live with the indifference. He registered for receiving Enforcement warrants and started bounty hunting. The fringe may be unlawful. But the wicked will fear.

    “…you’re a long way from Hasta V, Mr Barnes.” The officer said.
    “What?” Randy was lost in his thoughts.
    “You must update your records. Hasta V is no longer habitated.” He said annoyed.
    “Hasta V is home. Is that all officer?”

    [Likely] (2d10 => (8,6) => 8) does the officer let Randy go?
    Yes.

    “Move along, move along.” The officer closes the datapad and along with his partner continue their stroll down roads of the City World of Leko.

    [Either Way] (1d10 => 6) does Randy have a mark?
    Yes, but…
    he’s not near the mark, but to meet an informant

    [Likely] (2d10 => (8,9) => 9) is the informant in a cantina?
    Yes.
    [Either Way] (1d10 => 3) is everything as expected?
    No.
    TWENE: Decrease Simple Element
    [Either Way] (1d10 => 9) is the informant there?
    Yes.
    [Either Way] (1d10 => 10) is the informant an alien?
    Yes, and…
    She’s a Feral

    He enters the Half-full Bottle cantina, and it seems to be less than half-full. Probably half-empty. He looks around and sees the only the bartender and one wolf-lady sporting her canines, sitting by the end of the bar. She snorts as she sees Randy.

    Reaction: Neutral

    Let’s see who the mark is, before establishing anything further.

    Donjon: Lipaul Riffin: Male Explorer. Lipaul has cropped copper hair and light blue eyes, and small ears. He wears a silver jumpsuit and carries a tablet computer. Lipaul is wrongly sought by the law for murder.

    Haha awesome. We’ll still have to establish if this is true or not though.

    Randy sits by her and motions to the bartender. “I’ll have what she has.” The bartender smiles and Randy wonders what kind of piss he’ll drink.
    He turns to the feral. “So how does this work? do I give you something to sniff and you follow the trail?”
    “You talk big words. I take big bites. You insult me again. You find him on your own.” she replies.
    Randy nods.
    “50 Unity Credits. Upfront.” she adds.
    Randy puts some coin on the table. “Your info better be worth it.”

    [Somewhat Likely] (1d10 => 6) is the information good?
    Yes.
    [Either Way] (1d10 => 4) does he lay low?
    No.

    So he runs.

    “Your guy, Lipaul is a scout. He has a ship.” She says.
    “Tell me something I don’t know. Been there. It’s impounded. He must have killed someone important to get Unity on his ass, and a bounty on his head.” Randy cuts her off.
    “Let me finish you impatient bipedal piece of pork. He has another way off world. He used to be part of the omegaCorp Scouts. From what I hear one of his friends should be taking off as soon as the vessel is refueled.” She adds.
    “The name. Save me the time to find it on my own.” Randy asks as the bartender serves him a black-colored drink. Randy looks at the drink in disgust, as the Feral smiles, enjoying his reaction.

    donjon: Brinia Sones: Female Explorer. Brinia has a long face, with curly green hair and sharp hazel eyes. She wears a gray jumpsuit and carries a tablet computer. Brinia wants to be left alone.

    Since I’ve got the opening scene kicking off the adventure, it’s time to decide on my solo gaming tools.
    I used the discord GM emulator bot for the oracle questions so far, but I am finding it lacking since it has no option for out-of-the box surprises. No chaos factor, interventions, false presuppositions, random events, or altered scenes. Therefore I’ll be switching to Mythic Variations II as a core. I think Mythic will fit best in this game style, as it’s scene-based.
    I’ll be adding the “…but” answers to the oracle for when the numbers are both ODD and the Chaos Die is above the Chaos Factor.
    If I find a nice way to integrate False Presuppositions I’ll add it too. I’m thinking that if the Chaos Die equals the Chaos Factor, then you get a False Presupposition. But I’ll have a side rule that if I cannot come up with something in the next few seconds, I’ll disregard it.

    So, I’m setting the Chaos Factor to 5 and go ahead.

    Q: Does the Feral provide the name? (Very Likely)
    A: False Presupposition. Nothing comes to mind. It’s an Exceptional No, and a Random Event.
    Exceptional No: The Feral doesn’t know the name.
    Random Event: PC Positive: Proceedings Goals. Maybe some news on the holo-tv about his target’s location.
    Descriptor: Loyally Mighty

    “I don’t have the name…” the feral starts but Randy cuts her off, and motions for the bartender to raise the volume on the holo-screen.
    “…with the Unity warrant approved by the Leko administration, a City-wide arrest warrant was issued and approved by the court. Leko enforcement officers have started a manhunt as Lipaul Riffin was last seen in the naval base district.”
    Randy is angry. “Your information is no good! No name, only rumours for 50 credits.”
    The feral sports her canines. “You payed for information, you got information.”

    Intimidation (4,1)/Spirit (3): Success

    Randy grabs her throat. “Listen to me you dog-face. You think I’m afraid of you? I have the likes of you for breakfast.”
    She whimpers and puts some coin back on the counter. “Here take half.”
    Randy takes the coin, leaves some for the bartender and jumps of to his hover motorcycle and heads off to find his mark.


    Mid-scene: Using streetwise to find the location of the omegaCorp landing pad.
    Streewise (5,4): Success

    For the next scene I imagine that Randy will have arrived at the landing pad and wait for Riffin to arrive.

    Is the Scene Modified?: Yes: Interrupt Scene: PC Positive: Arrive Plans

    Okay so, Randy has gotten the schematics of the landing pad and knows exactly where Lipaul will come from, so he can lie in wait.

    Randy takes position behind some fuel crates at the landing pad. The Dali Gupsy is a TTR-5 Mark 1 Scout Class Shuttle for short range exploration. It has an aerodyne hull and inefficient sublight engines. Randy can see the antenna of the planetary sensor system and a defensive laser cannon.

    Q: Does Lipaul arrive? (Likely)
    A: Yes
    Lipaul: Notice (3): Failure

    Q: Is there anyone else around there? (I wanted to ask this before Lipaul arrives, but whatever)
    A: Yes`
    Detail Check: Combatively Aromatic

    Someone has arrived and they throw gas grenades.

    Notice (5,4): Success

    Q: Does he know if it’s lethal?
    A: Yes, it is.

    As Randy is ready to make his move on the unsuspecting Lipaul, he smells something odd. A weird sweet almond smell covers the room. He tries to remember basic chemistry… sweet almond… cyanide!
    He attempts to grab Lipaul and get out of there. “Come!” He puts his blaster on his ribs and drags him out.

    Intimidation (5,3)/ Spirit (1): Success

    Q: Do they make it out in time?
    A: Yes, no harm roll will be made

    Under gunpoint, the mark moves out of the landing pad willingly.
    Randy cuffs him and locks the cuffs to the rear of the hover motorcycle, and then sets off to ride away to the precinct.

    Q: Does anyone chase them?
    A: Yes

    Q: Is it law enforcement?
    A: No, but it’s another bounty hunter

    Looking at the mirrors, Randy notices another hovercycle after him. ‘Another bounty hunter’, he thinks to himself. Not all hunters abide by the rules. When you’re in the Fringe long enough, it’s easy to break a few of them, here and there, if that means making a payday and a full meal in your stomach.

    I’m going to be using the Chase rules. They’re not my favorite, but they’ll have to do. This is a standard chase of Five Rounds.

    Round 1

    Randy: Driving (3,2): Failure
    Bounty Hunter: Driving (4): Success: 9S: Long Range
    Bounty Hunter: Shooting (1-4:-3): Miss

    Round 2

    Randy: Driving (2,10): Raise: 10H, 5S: Long Range
    Bounty Hunter: Driving (4): Success: 5H: Long Range
    Randy: Shooting (5-4,1-4: 1,-3): Miss
    Bounty Hunter: Shooting (11-4:7): Hit: 11/8: Randy is Shaken: Out of Control roll: Skid 4″

    Q: Does it collide with something (Very Likely)
    A: Yes
    Q: Is the vehicle moving at top speed?
    A: Yes

    Okay so damage is.. 9D6: 19: Randy receives 2 Wounds, the hovercycle is ruined, and Lipaul is down. The chase ends.
    Soak Roll: Vigor (2,5): Success. Received 1 Wound instead.

    Randy tries to go as fast as possible in the tight strees and alleys, while staying in cover. This works for a while as he keeps his distance from his pursuer and any shots go stray. He makes a quick left turn, and again another and finds an opening to shoot back at their hunter, but the pursuer ducks out of the way of the fire. They continue the high speed chase, and the bounty hunter puts his rifle at an aiming position, he locks on to his target and hits randy with his blaster. The accelerated particles are absorbed by Randy’s armor, but the hit is strong enough to make him lose control. They skid onto a street light, crashing the hovercycle.
    Randy flies off the vehicle, but Lipaul is still chained to the wreck of the vehicle. The collision was too much for him. He doesn’t seem to react at all.

    Round 3

    Initiative: Randy 8D, Bounty Hunter KH

    Q: Has the bounty hunter closed in on them?
    A: Yes, random event: PC Negative: Release Normal
    I interpret that it means that the bounty hunter has eliminated the mark.

    I need some inspiration with regards to the bounty hunter.
    Donjon: Heley Johnson: Female Mercenary. Heley has black hair and red eyes. She wears classical fashion and carries a laser pistol. Heley is hunting the aliens who murdered her family.

    With Randy still trying to recover from the bruises, the bounty hunter parks next to the crash. She steps off her hover cycle, aims with his blaster rifle right at the head of the mark, and shoots. Then she turns her attention to Randy. Randy knows what this means. No witnesses.

    Bounty Hunter: Shooting (15): Hit with a raise: 15/8: 1 Wound
    Soak Roll: Vigor (2,2): Failure
    Randy: spends Benny to recover from Shaken. Shooting (3-2,2-2:1,0): Miss

    She blasts of her rifle at him. Randy scimpers next to a crate, but a shot got him at his leg. He shoots back but misses.

    Round 4

    Initiative: Randy JD, Bounty Hunter 4S

    Q: Is there any cover around there?
    A: Yes
    Randy move behind cover and shoot: Double Tap: Shooting (4-2, 4-2: 2,2): Miss

    Bounty Hunter: Shooting (2-2): Miss

    Round 5

    Initiative: Randy 8S, Bounty Hunter 2D

    “I give the warrant to you! The mark is yours! You don’t want the cops after you as well for my murder!” Randy shouts in an attempt to save himself.

    Q: Does the hunter agree? (Unlikely)
    A: Yes

    Randy waits for an answer but hears none. He listens to a hover cycle skid away, and then peeks out of cover. She’s gone. So is Lipaul’s body.
    He coughs some blood. “Crap.” He swears. He looks at his ride in pieces. “Shit.” He adds. He hadn’t even finished paying for the darn thing. No money, no ride. Things aren’t going his way.

    Healing (5-4,5-4:1,1): Failure

    Randy tries to bandage himself and recover his pieces, but it’s all a mess. His head still dizzy when the local officers arrive at the scene.

    Q: Do they take him downtown for questioning?
    A: No, but they note down reckless driving infractions.

    Randy explains to them as best as he can the sequence of events. Provides them with the necessary documents and the warrant. They still don’t care about who caused it all. In true Unity bureaucracy, they write him down for Infraction DRF-212, reckless driving. 100 credits fine. Doubled if not payed in 15 days.
    He owes already 3000 credits for the destroyed hover cycle. And now he has to visit the local hospital, which will set him back another 200 credits. This wasn’t a good day.


    Session Summary

    A fun, short one-shot. It could have evolved into a full-fledged adventure, if the mark wasn’t killed by the bounty hunter lady. Alas, things turned sour for Randy, and it all ended pretty quickly.
    I was eager to run a sci-fi RPG solo again, but this was short and left me hungry for more. The good news is that even though the adventure is on a stale point, I can easily pick it up with a new warrant. Just hoping it won’t grow old. Maybe a different class of character would be more adventure friendly. It’s easier for action to come at your way if you play a smuggler.
    Also I’m kinda becoming bored of the same tough guy trope that I run in 90% of my solo adventures. Maybe I should look into some more intellectual fellas, or non-human stereotypes.
    The curious thing is that what I enjoyed the most was the chase scene. I had found that the chase rules were a bit boring, but so far the chases I run were on foot. Vehicle combat is much more interesting (even though I had to house rule some issues, like the Out-of-control effects on the abstract chase rules), and a crash was almost lethal.
    The Unified Space is interesting, and I find that it can be a fun way to get me more acquainted with the setting, which will in turn help me define the scenes in my Five Parsecs from Home campaigns, as I’ll be more experienced with it.

     
  • giorgis 10:45 pm on November 8, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Solo   

    Rogue Fists – Ep6 

    World Steps

    With the Hard Bargain in bad shape, and the debt still running, Cyloo weighs in the amassed credits and decides to move ahead with paying off the debt and fixing the damage. It set them back to only a mere 4.000 credits. He hopes that they’ll bring the number back up soon.

    A short transfer later, the ship is now theirs, and it will be ready to fly them off-world once Marie hits back with the crew. In her last call she told Cyloo she needed some more time.

    In their downtime, Atrin headed off in the city, only to get into some fist fights with the locals. He returned a bit bruised, and wiser.

    Their newer member, Aurquan found a prominent buyer in the illegal weapons market, and he sold off some secondary weapons for double the price. 6.000 credits for a blade, a colony rifle and a shotgun. Cyloo was very happy with this development, and went on to find some jobs in the known places.
    He carefully considered a dangerous job by a megacorop, but finally went ahead with their contact. Wayne Nakada wanted a package delivered on a small zigurat like structure to the hot zone of Canum VII. Weird job, but he knew better than to question the whims of eccentric rich people. He took the job and briefed Aurquan and Atrin. Soon the shuttle was dropping them off to the south.

    Behind the scenes rolls

    Ship was damaged, so they can’t leave off world
    Upkeep: 1 credit
    Debt: 1 credit
    Pay off entire Debt: Cost +10 credits.
    Repair ship completely: Cost +5 credits
    Total Cost: 17 credits. 4 credits remaining.

    Marie: Still on event until next turn when she returns.
    Atrin: Explore: Found a trainer. Character earns +2XP
    Aurquan: Trade: A chance to unload some stuff. Sell Colony Rifle, Shotgun and Blade for 2 credits each.
    Cyloo: Find Patron Job: 2 Jobs.
    1st Job: Wayne Nakada: Danger Pay: +2 Credits. Time frame: This or the following 2 turns. No Hazards No Conditions.
    2nd Job: Corporation. Dange Pay: +2 Credits. Time frame: This or the next campaign turn. No Benefits. Hazards: Veteran Opposition. No Conditions.


    Deployment

    Cyloo scans the field with his macrobinoculars. He notices the alien zigurat, on the other side of a mud river. A rope bridge connects the two sides. He turns to Atrin, with a ‘You couldn’t bring us to the other side?’ look on his face, but Atrin just shrugs and smiles.

    Through the macrobinoculars he makes out some creatures in the far distance. He zooms in. “Sand Runners!” he shouts to his mates. “We must move in fast”. He draws his shotgun and the team starts closing in as the creatures rush towards them.

    Behind the scenes rolls

    Deployment Condition: Brief Engagement
    Notable Sights: Shiny Bits
    Objective: Deliver

    Enemy: Roving Threats: Sand Runners
    Number: 4 enemies
    Seized Initiative

    Aurquan carries the package


    The Battle

    Carefully they move onwards as the runners close in
    Atrin shot twice and missed now the beasts are so close
    But Cyloo blasted off his shotgun, and down with one creature
    One beast leaped at Atrin!
    The creature tears Atrin to shreds! He’s down.
    Ready for close combat Aurquan the engineer drops his Laser and draws his pistol
    He puts two in the head of the beast and it falls
    The next one leaps forward and slashes at Aurquan
    Who poisons it with lead

    But the river suddenly flows with a thundering torrent of mud.
    The two squaddies barely jump back in time as it covers everything.
    They didn’t accomplish the objective and had to rush to the shuttle.

    Behind the scenes rolls

    Turn 1: Only movement

    Turn 2: Atrin shoots with blast rifle and misses

    Turn 3: Atrin shoots with blast file and misses; Aurquan shoots with infrantry laser and hits, stunning one sand runner; Cyloo shoots with shotgun, one shot hits, sand runner is dead

    Turn 4: Sand runner brawl against Atrin, Atrin is hit, Atrin is down; Aurquan shoots with pistol (ready for brawl), Aurquan hits, sand runner is dead; Cyloo has no clear LOS

    Turn 5: Sand runner brawl against Aurquan, Aurquan hits, sand runner is dead; Brief Engagement is resolved.


    Post Battle

    From the shuttle they see Atrin’s body washed out in mud near a quiet turn of the mud river. They land and pick him up. Thankfully, he’s only suffered minor injuries. Washed out next to him is a weapons module, a shock attachment. It’s wondrous what the desert takes and what the desert gives.

    The team returns back to the Hard Bargain, only to be given around 4.000 credits compensation for their effort, as they didn’t lose the package, but didn’t deliver it either. Wayne isn’t very happy.

    As they gather their pieces, Marie returns to the crew. “Why the long face?” She asks Cyloo, who doesn’t bother to answer, lost in his thoughts. “Ship’s ready for departure. Fasten up.” He says in his cold Hakshan manner. Marie nods, “I wanted to tell you about some friends I got along the way, but maybe another time. Let’s roll.”

    Behind the scenes rolls

    Pay: 4 credits
    Loot: Shock attachment – Modded Cyloo’s Machine Pistol
    Atrin: minor injuries – 1 turn
    +2 XP to everyone
    Aurquan: +1 Toughness
    Atrin: +1 Combat Skill
    Cyloo: +1 Reflexes
    Campaign Event: A chance meeting turns into a new ally.
    Character Event: Cyloo: A deep feeling of melancholy and despair is afflicting you.


    The following would have been a new episode, but due to the event I decided to place it here

    World Steps

    Marie plugs in the coordinates for Anith IV as soon as they are outside orbit, and the Hard Bargain enters the Tunnel. Everything goes quiet for a while.

    The crew wakes up to the sound of alarm. They rush to the bridge, getting feedback from the instruments.
    “What’s going on?!” Marie yells to be heard above the alarm sound. “We’ve been thrown off course.” Cyloo answers. “Trying to figure out why.
    “Calculations show a gravitational anomaly the size of an asteroid field that creates a Weak Tunnel Point. But the Nav charts don’t have any such field here!” Aurquan the Engineer responds calmly.
    “Sensors show a boarding shuttle just docked at the airlock. We’re being raided. It’s an ambush!” Cyloo says.
    “Incoming automated message…” Aurquan lets his voice trail off as the message plays.
    “We’re the Black Nebula Tentacles! Our reach is everywhere! You can’t escape us! Surrender and you will be spared the misery of falling in battle!” The message ends.
    “Pirates… prepare for boarding.” Marie says and arms her rifle.

    Behind the scenes rolls

    Heading off world

    Starship Travel Event: Navigation Trouble -1 SP, Reroll: Raided: Savvy: Failure
    Enemy: Pirates
    Number: 9 enemies (Infrantry lasers, 1 Captain with blade, 2 Specialists with power claws)


    The Battle

    Marie, Cyloo and Aurquan have taken positions in the cargo area
    The pirates begin their charge
    A pirate shoots at Marie and missed, but the Pirate Captain hits her dead on with his laser
    Marie is down
    Cyloo takes revenge shooting down the captain with his shotgun, but the rest press on
    Cyloo shoots another pirate, and despite his shotguns strength, he stands firm and shoots back but misses
    Taking advantage of Cyloo’s attention elsewhere, another pirate closes in, aims right at Aurquan, and with a snap shot, brings the Engineer down
    Cyloo has been left alone against 7 raiders
    Shot and stunned, he’s attacked by a pirate wielding a power claw
    He tries to fend him off in close combat
    He hits in the brawl, but the hit is too weak and he falls to the pirate

    Behind the scenes rolls

    Turn 1: Only movement

    Turn 2: Only movement

    Turn 3: Pirate1 shoots Marie, misses; Pirate captain shoots Marie, hits, Marie is down; Cyloo shoots Pirate captain, hits, pirate captain is down; Aurquan shoots Pirate2, misses; Pirate7 flees

    Turn 4: Cyloo shoots Pirate2 with shotgun, 2 hits, 2 stuns; Pirate2 shoots Cyloo, misses; Pirate1 shoots Aurquan, hits, Aurquan is down

    Turn 5: Pirate1 shoots Cyloo, hits, Cyloo is stunned; Pirate specialist1 brawl vs Cyloo, both hit, Cyloo is down


    Post Battle

    Cyloo slowly regains consciousness. He gets up on his feet at about the same time as Aurquan. They rush to Marie. She’s been seriously wounded and is bleeding. They put her in a trolley and rush her to medbay.

    Once she’s stable Cyloo checks the ship. The space pirates took everything of value and left. They let them live.

    “Why did they leave us with our ship and our lives?” Aurquan asks.
    “Smaller bounty on their heads. Plus if you know that some pirates are bound to kill you, you’re gonna put up a stronger fight. If you know they’re gonna let you live, you might as well surrender. Lower risk for them and the mark.” Cyloo explains. “In any case this has set us back a lot. Let’s hope Anith IV is more hospitable. Set us a course.”

    Behind the scenes rolls

    Cyloo: Knocked out

    Marie: Serious Injury: 3 Turns

    Aurquan: Knocked out


    Session Summary

    Once more Five Parsecs from Home plays faster than it writes, and that’s including the table set up.

    Having so much fun with every session.

    I am now wondering what will Anith IV be like. My crew is wounded, poor and without extra gear. Maybe I should have taken the opportunity for a new crew member, but I wanted to stick to the small crew of four and, how was I supposed to know that I’ll get both a navigational trouble and a raided event. Brings back memories of my Solo Star Wars D6 campaign with Roy and his rocky start.

     
  • giorgis 10:29 pm on October 13, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Solo,   

    A Call to Glory S06 – The Witcher 

    Continuing at the same challenge in the Level 1 dungeon A Call to Glory from TSR’s Dragon Quest, introductory adventure game, I aim to try more of the fantasy RPGs in my collection, this time with The Witcher.

    I’ll be using a diverse party of 3 characters from Witcher Easy Mode, the free quickstart. I’ll try to include as many different demihuman races and careers as possible to have a party that can deal with most tasks.

    My main issue with this playthrough is the ingrained rulesystem and setting. For goblins and kobolds I’ll be using the Nekker stats, and for orcs and larger, the Ghouls.


    The Party

    Pregenerated

    • Orban Madars, Dwarf Criminal
    • Ada of Ban Ard, Human Man at Arms
    • Andras the Red, Elf Bard

    The Adventure

    The heroes have been called before Gustovan, the Burgomaster of Torlynn. Torlynn is a small village set in a quiet, hilly area near the mountains. The heroes have lived here for many years and think of Torlynn as home. Gustovan is known as a wise and kind mayor.
    He asks of the heroes to go explore the old, abandoned, dwarven, iron mine, because strange lights and sounds come from within. They’re to find out if there is something wrong there or if the reports are false.

    The heroes enter the dungeon. It’s entrance is a rough cavern, cut from the stone long ago by dwarves. They check their weapons and start down into the mine, with the wind blowing in their backs.

    The heroes enter the dungeon. It’s entrance is a rough cavern, cut from the stone long ago by dwarves. They check their weapons and start down into the mine, with the wind blowing in their backs.


    A. Tunnel

    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None

    The wind fades away as the heroes move into the mine. A long tunnel leads onward, to the next room.


    B. The First Lair

    NameInitiative
    Orban8+3=11
    Ada10+7=17
    Andras5+9=14/7
    Nek15+9=14/15
    Nek25+8=13

    Orban is in front, followed by Ada and Andras. Ada and Andras can’t move until after Orban moves, so they hold their actions, thus the Nekkers move first.

    Round 1

    Nek1 charge at Orban vs Reposition: 18/23: Orban moves aside.
    Ada moves and attacks Fastx2 at Nek2 vs Dodge: 20/18: Hit: Torso: 7 Damage, 25/18: Hit: Torso: Simple Critical (Foreign Object): 11 Damage +3, Nekker is down
    Nek2 charge at Ada vs Block (shield): 31C/17: Hit: Torso: Difficult Critical: Sucking Chest Wound: 0 Damage +8
    Orban attacks Nek2 vs Dodge: 21/17: Hit: R.Arm: 2 Damage
    Andras shoots Nek2: 14F:(No major fumble)/18: Miss

    Round 2

    Ada attacks Fastx2 at Nek2 vs Dodge: 19/16: Hit: Head: 36: Nek2 is dead.

    So the adventure book states that if the heroes have a hard time, give them an extra Kur's Drink potion. This time, I decide as a GM to let them sweat it a bit. I know there's a Kur's drink at the Gnoll Lair. Suffocation causes 3 hits per round damage. Will they make it in the remaining 11 rounds that Ada has to live?

    They find a leather armor and a pouch belt.

    As the heroes enter the room, they notice a couple of beds. Probably used to be the miners’, but now they have new occupants. The vile creatures jump off and charge at Orban who’s the first to enter the room. He quickly moves aside, giving room for Ada to hack twice at the monster with his battle axe, hitting it at the torso both times, killing it.
    This has left his side open to the other nekker, who digs it’s claws deep at the his chest, opening a gaping hole at his lungs.
    Orban hits the Nekker with his blade, but he barely wounds it, as Andras tries to get a bow and arrow ready. The sight of blood distracts him and he stops short.
    Gasping for air, blood in his throat, Ada of Ban Ard brings his battleaxe down at the nekker’s head, killing the creature. They search the room quickly for anything to help Ada with his condition but they find nothing, so they quickly search onwards not wasting any time.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    I won’t make a wandering monster check.

    Nothing of interest in this narrow cut cavern in the stone. Only the occasional splashing of water driping from the ceiling.


    D. Orc Lair

    I’ll be using the Ghoul stats for this opponent.
    Only Orban and Andras will enter the room. Ada is right outside.

    NameInitiative
    Orban8+6=14
    Andras5+9=14
    Ghoul6+5=11

    Round 1 (3)

    Orban moves and attacks Ghoul vs dodge: 23/11F(No major fumble): Complex Critical: Ruptured Spleen: 5 Damage +5, 21/20: Hit: L.Leg: 2 Damage
    Andras shoots Ghoul vs dodge: 17/25: Miss
    Ghoul claws Orban vs reposition: 9F(No major fumble)/22: Miss

    Round 2 (4)

    Orban attacks Ghoul vs dodge: 24/19: Hit: Torso: 5 Damage, 18/19: Miss
    Andras shoots Ghoul vs dodge: 16/20: Miss
    Ghoul bites Orban vs reposition: 17/16: Hit: R.Arm: 0 Damage, 06/25%: Bleed

    Round 3 (5)

    Orban attacks Ghoul vs dodge: 22/12: Hit: Complex Critical: Ruptured Spleen: 5 Damage +5, Ghoul is down

    As soon as the heroes enter this small room, the stench of rotten meat fills their nostrils. They see a ghoulish figure as they move in to engage. Orban hits it right in the torso, rupturing it’s spleen, and follows with a weak hit to the leg. Andras shoots at it and misses, while Ada stays in the rear, trying to keep his wound closed. The Ghoul claws at Orban, but the dwarf moves aside, and strikes back, hitting the necrophage in the torso. Andras shoots again and misses. The ghoul growls and jumps at Orban, biting his arm, and causing severe bleeding. The dwarf furious hits the ghoul again at the same spot, this time the creature can’t withstand any more wounds, and perishes. The dwarf notices a loose stone slab on the floor. Pushing it aside he finds a bag of gold, probably the treasure belonging to some of the miners.


    E. Trapped Room

    Orban: Practiced paranoia: 19/18: Detects the trap

    A small empty room, with a funny smell. Black ash and soot cover the floors and walls. A steel door with an iron handle sits in the middle of the floor.
    As the dwarf tries to open the door he notices a trap mechanism connected to a stem for something to pour out. He prefers to leave this door alone lest he suffers.


    F. Gnoll Lair

    I’ll be using the Ghoul stats for this opponent.
    Only Orban and Andras will enter the room. Ada is right outside.

    NameInitiative
    Orban8+10=18
    Andras5+2=7
    Ghoul6+4=10

    Round 1 (7)

    Orban moves and attacks Ghoul vs dodge: 27C/30C: Miss, 21/34C: Miss
    Ghoul claws Orban vs reposition: 21/10F(No major fumble): Hit: Complex Critical: Broken Ribs: 0 Damage +5. 11/30 hits.
    Andras shoots Ghoul: 0F/15: You strike one of your allies with a ricochet. Roll location on a random ally within range. Orban: R.Leg: 3 Damage 14/30 hits

    Round 2 (8)

    Orban attacks Ghoul vs dodge: 19/28C: Miss, 17/23C: Miss
    Ghoul bites Orban vs reposition: 20/21: Miss
    Andras shoots Ghoul: 29C/16: Difficultt Critical: Torn Stomach: 6 Damage +8

    Round 3 (9)

    Orban attacks Ghoul vs dodge: 24/14: Complex Critical: Ruptured Spleen: 3 Damage +5, 33C/6F: Deadly Critical: Septic Shock: 3 Damage +10, Ghoul is down.

    Orban is at 10 hit points when he drinks Kur’s drink: 20 hit points healed, bleeding stops.
    Ada is at 10 hits points when he drinks Kur’s drink: 10 hit points healed, Stabilized.
    Ada drinks once more, healing 25 more hit points. He’s at full health and Treated.

    The heroes enter a room and a dozen of small insects buzz past them. Biting flies are everywhere. A large ghoul sits in the room, and as he sees them, attacks.
    Orban slashes at the creature, but fails to land a hit as it dodges and evades. It claws back at the dwarf, and breaks his ribs. Pain sears through Orban’s body. Andras shoots, but as the two combatants are entangled, his arrow finds Orban’s right leg instead. The dwarf curses at the elf, and misses his next attacks against the ghoul, but manages to avoid it’s bite.
    Hoping to redeem himself Andras the Red aims carefully and this time his arrow strikes true, tearing the ghould’s stomach apart. The creature shrieks and Orban finds the opportunity to hit it twice in torso, his poniard rupturing the spleen and tearing the guts sending the ghoul down in septic shock.
    Searching the room, they find an invigorating honey-like potion. Andras recognizes it for a potion of healing. Kur’s Drink. They decide to share it between Orban and Ada, and by magic, their wounds heal. Only Ada feels a bit weary, but he can breathe again.


    G. Empty Room

    Wandering Monster Check: No monster

    I decide not to search the pile of dirt in the room.

    The heroes go through a rough room like a cave, a small pile of dirt is at one corner of the room. The party moves onward.


    H. Broken Room

    Orban dodge: 4+8=12/14: Failure: Hit: R.Leg: 6 Damage. 24/30 health.
    Ada dodge: 27+10=37/14: Success
    Andras dodge: 4+5=9/14: Failure: 18 Damage. 12/30 health.

    As the party goes through this large chamber cut from the stone, they notice the walls and ceiling are cracked, and huge chunks of stone have fallen on the floor. Their vibrations cause some more to fall as they pass through, hitting Orban to the leg and Andras to the chest.


    I. Narrow Tunnel

    NameInitiative
    Orban8+7=15
    Ada10+5=15
    Andras5+3=8
    Ghoul6+1=7

    With no room to maneuver, Orban faces off the Ghoul one to one.

    Round 1

    Orban charges Ghoul vs dodge: 10F(No major fumble)/4F: Hit: Head: 27 Damage: Ghoul is down

    The heroes find another narrow tunnel. They go through in a single file, the dwarf in front, the elf in the rear, and the man at arms in the middle. Suddenly the door at the end of the hall swings open, and a foul ghoul, cries out and marches towards them.
    Orban charges and finds the ghoul at the head, killing it instantly.


    J. The Story Room

    I’m not rolling a wandering monsters check since the next room has a major fight.

    The heroes enter a large chamber that has been polished smooth. Ancient dwarvish runes are carved into the walls. Orban reads them out aloud. They tell of the story of the digging of the mine and the work that the dwarves did there. Near the end, it mentions that the dwarves found a vein of glowing iron unlike anything they had seen before. They mined this strange ore, which they called eisenmond and found they could make weapons of great magic with it.
    As they mined for more eisenmond they discovered some dark and evil secret about the mountain, without saying anything more than that they packed up and left overnight.
    The story ends by saying that they left behind a large nugget of eisenmond which glowed brighter than the rest, in the care of someone called the Stone King.
    The heroes realize that this is the key to the secret of the mountain, and what Gustovan sent them there to find.


    K. The Iron Mine

    I don’t feel that Ghouls and Nekkers fit well with the story, so I’m going to place 4 Knockers here, from A Witcher’s Journal.

    NameInitiative
    Orban8+8=16
    Ada10+10=20
    Andras5+10=15
    Knockers6+2=8

    Round 1

    Ada charges at Knocker4 vs reposition: 22/22: Miss
    Orban moves and fast attacks Knocker1 vs reposition: 23/17: Hit: L.Leg: 1 Damage, 10F(no major fumble)/16: Miss
    Andras shoots Knocker4 vs reposition: 21/17: Hit: R.Leg: 2 Damage
    Knocker1 attacks Orban vs reposition: 17/21: Miss
    Knocker2 moves and attacks Orban vs reposition: 22/16: Hit: R.Leg: 3 Damage. 21/30 Health
    Knocker3 moves and attacks Ada vs block: 15/21: Blocked
    Knocker4 attacks Ada vs block: 19/21: Blocked

    Round 2

    Ada attacks Knocker4 vs reposition: 22/20: Hit: R.Leg: 4 Damage ,18/17: Hit: R.Leg: 4 Damage
    Orban attacks Knocker1 vs reposition: 19/33C: Miss, 30C/17: Hit: Difficult Critical: Torn Stomach: 4 Damage +8
    Andras shoots Knocker4 vs reposition: 17/17: Miss
    Knocker1 attacks Orban vs reposition: 17/22: Miss
    Knocker2 attacks Orban vs reposition: 19/18: Hit: Torso: 0 Damage. 21/30 Health
    Knocker3 attacks Ada vs block: 22/11: Complex Critical: Lost 2 Teeth: 2 Damage +5. 38/45 Health
    Knocker4 attacks Ada vs block: 19/23: Blocked

    Round 3

    Ada attacks Knocker4 vs reposition: 15/21: Miss, 15/16: Miss
    Orban attacks Knocker1 vs reposition: 21/16: Hit: Head: 10 Damage, 21/15: Hit: R.Leg: 2 Damage
    Andras shoots Knocker4 vs reposition: 16/16: Miss
    Knocker1 attacks Orban vs reposition: 15/25: Miss
    Knocker2 attacks Orban vs reposition: 15/15: Miss
    Knocker3 attacks Ada vs block: 25/19: Hit: L.Arm: 0 Damage
    Knocker4 attacks Ada vs block: 16/17: Blocked

    Round 4

    Ada attacks Knocker4 vs reposition: 24/17: Hit: Simple Critical: Foreign Object: 13 Damage +3, 18/22: Miss
    Orban attacks Knocker1 vs reposition: 19/16: Hit: L.Arm: 1 Damage, 7F/21: You damage your weapon severely. Your weapon takes 4points of reliability damage.
    Andras shoots Knocker4 vs reposition: 18/21: Miss
    Knocker1 attacks Orban vs reposition: 17/18: Miss
    Knocker2 attacks Orban vs reposition: 18/21: Miss
    Knocker3 attacks Ada vs block: 21/24: Blocked
    Knocker4 attacks Ada vs block: 15/24: Blocked

    Round 5

    Ada attacks Knocker4 vs reposition: 24/21: Hit: R.Leg: 3 Damage, 18/23: Miss
    Orban attacks Knocker1 vs reposition: 23/19: Hit: Torso: 5 Damage, Knocker1 is down, attack vs Knocker2: 9F/20: Your weapon glances off and you are staggered
    Andras shoots Knocker4 vs reposition: 17/17: Miss
    Knocker2 attacks Orban vs reposition: 22/19: Hit: L.Leg: 4 Damage. 17/30 Health.
    Knocker3 attacks Ada vs block: 13/30C: Blocked
    Knocker4 attacks Ada vs block: 20/17: Hit: L.Arm: 0 Damage

    Round 6

    Ada attacks Knocker4 vs reposition: 22/9: Hit: Difficult Critical: Sucking Chest Wound: 10 Damage +8, Knocker4 is down, attack vs Knocker3: 25/23: Hit: Torso: 10 Damage
    Orban attacks Knocker2 vs reposition: 23/11F: Hit: Complex Critical: Broken Ribs: 2 Damage +5, 18/16: Hit: R.Leg: 1 Damage
    Andras shoots Knocker3 vs reposition: 16/18: Miss
    Knocker2 attacks Orban vs reposition: 15/17: Miss
    Knocker3 attacks Ada vs block: 22/25: Blocked

    Round 7

    Ada attacks Knocker3 vs reposition: 25/15: Hit: Complex Critical: Broken Ribs: 11 Damage +5, 43C/22: Deadly Critical: Separated Spine/Decapitated: 36 Damage +10, Knocker3 is down
    Orban attacks Knocker2 vs reposition: 21/19: Hit: R.Leg: 2 Damage, 21/21: Miss
    Andras shoots Knocker2 vs reposition: 17/8F: Hit: Simple Critical: Foreign Object: 3 Damage +3
    Knocker2 attacks Orban vs reposition: 18/21: Miss

    Round 8

    Ada charges Knocker2 vs reposition: 22/17: Hit: R.Leg: 5 Damage
    Orban attacks Knocker2 vs reposition: 34C/19: Hit: Deadly Critical: Septic Shock: 2 Damage +10, 26C/14: Hit: Complex Critical: Sprained Arm: 1 Damage +5
    Andras shoots Knocker2 vs reposition: 21/16: Hit: L.Arm: 2 Damage
    Knocker2 attacks Orban vs reposition: 3F/22: You are knocked off balance and are staggered.

    Round 9

    Ada charges Knocker2 vs reposition: 15F/9: Hit: R.Arm: 6 Damage, Knocker2 is down

    The heroes enter a vast chamber that is roughly carved and still being worked. Small veins of iron ore still line the walls. Four monsters work the mine, and as they see the party they howl and attack.
    As the two sides clash, they fail to hit each other, still trying to read their opponents. Ada charges at two of the knockers, while Orban engages at two others and Andras shoots from the corner of the chamber at them.
    Ada hits one of his opponents twice at the leg, and blocks his counterattack with his shield, but the other punches him in the face so hard, that it knocks out two of his teeth. Orban lands a strike at the knockers, slashing at the abdomen, tearing it’s stomach. the creature cries in pain as stomach acids fill it’s guts. Orban manages to avoid both their strikes, while Andras shoots and misses.
    They all exchange blows, some hit some miss. Orban’s blade is damaged as it hits the hard floor, but finally, after a series of wounds he brings down his wounded enemy. He tries to hit the other knocker quickly, but he loses his balance and is staggered, and the knocker counterattacks with a hard punch to his leg.
    Ada hits the other knocker dead in the chest with his battleaxe, tearing off it’s lungs, and wounds the other assailant as well. His large shield blocks all their attacks.
    Andras shoots arrow after arrow, but worrying if he might hit his companions, he prefers to miss any risky shots.
    Orban slashes with his poniard at the tough goblinoid, his blade breaking a few ribs. The creature screams and tries to hit back, but Orban evades quickly the attacks.
    The fight continues with Ada bringing his axe blade horizontally right where the knocker’s head connects to the rest of the body. The connection is severed and the head flies off to a wild direction, as the body falls to the floor, blood pumping out of it’s major arteries.
    The last remaining knocker is ganged up by the heroes who quickly finish him off.
    Searching through their opponents belongings, they find a cool silver ring, and a coil of rope. The dwarf takes them both.


    L. Tunnel of Death

    Orban: Practiced paranoia: 30C/18: Detects the trap, and knows how to avoid it. +2 To Dodge Checks.
    Orban dodge: 4+8+2=14/14: Failure: Hit: L.Leg: 7 Damage. 10/30 health.
    Ada dodge: 17+10+2=29/14: Success
    Andras dodge: 8+5+2=15/14: Success

    The heroes enter a smooth and straight tunnel. The floor is marked with the dark stains of dried blood. As they reach the door to the other side, Orban detects a mechanism, that upon opening the door, releases several rocks to their heads. They try to be careful and the elf and the human avoid them, but the dwarf is hit on the leg, and is bruised.


    M. Mysterious Fountain

    In the center of the room is a stone fountain, carved in the image of a large dragon that coils around itself and sprays water out of its mouth. The water lands in a polished stone pool that has been cut into the floor around the statue. The air is sweet with the smell of fresh water. The heroes drink from the water to quench their thirst, and in a magical way, all their wounds and fatigue disappear.
    They look around the room and see that there are no more doors, and it appears to be the end of the mine. But knowing that they haven’t found either the Stone Kind or the large lump of eisenmond, they start searching for a secret door.

    Orban awareness: 12/16: Failure
    Ada awareness: 0F/16: Fumble
    Andras awareness: 27C/16: Success
    They find the secret door.
    Wandering Monster check: Monster: Ghoul

    NameInitiative
    Orban8+6=14/14
    Ada10+8=18
    Andras5+3=8
    Ghoul6+8=14/15

    Round 1 (7)

    Ada moves and attacks Ghoul: 18/17: Hit: Head: 33 Damage: Ghoul is down

    As they find a secret door and open it, a ghoul was lying in wait right behind it. It hisses, but Ada is waiting with his battleaxe. He brings it down on the necrophage’s skull, finishing it off in one swift strike.


    N. Sloping Passage

    The tunnel has been cut downards at a sharp angle. Walking down is very dangerous, but with the rope, the heroes descend it with great care.


    O. The Eisenmond Mine

    The heroes finally enter a rough stone chamber, with flakes of a mysterious glowing ore flickering in the walls, floor and ceiling, making the dark walls shimmer like a starry night.
    In the center, sitting on a small stone pedestal, is a short statue carved from a single granite block. It depicts a dwarf with a pick and other mining gear, missing it’s head which is tossed in the corner. The head sports a rusty crown, fashioned from iron, The statue’s hands are open and held out as if it was holding something.

    Okay, so here’s a puzzle concerning players and not characters, but it can be resolved with Deduction (INT) checks, which I will test.

    Orban Deduction: 1F/14: Fail
    Ada Deduction: 10/14: Fail
    Andras Deduction: 22/14: Success. He finds a secret compartment with two nuggets of eisenmond, that fit perfectly on the eye sockets of the statue’s head.

    Orban Deduction: 13/14: Fail
    Ada Deduction: 11/14: Fail
    Andras Deduction: 14/14: Fail

    2nd attempt:
    Orban Deduction: 19/14: Success. He considers placing the head back on the statue.

    Searching around for secret doors, Andras finds a small compartment in the pedestal that contains two nuggets of eisenmond. His keen senses tell him that they fit perfectly to the head, and he proceeds to place them there.
    The party looks at the head. Then Orban decides to re-assemble the statue.
    As soon as the statue is assembled, a strange light fills the room. The stone body of the statue glows and the mouth moves slowly. In a voice deep and old as the mountain around, the statue speaks.
    It says about how the mine belongs to the dwarves, and how good it is that the heroes have arrived because a great evil has tainted the spirit of the place. The priceless magical stone called the Eisenkern was stolen, and along with it, the power to trap the beast that lives at the heart of the mountain. If the Eisenkern is not returned, that terrible beast will be freed, and a horrible evil will come upon all who dwell in these lands.


    Ending the Adventure

    The heroes return and report their story to Gustovan, who seems troubled by it. He rewards them and takes thought of the matter.


    The System

    The Witcher TTRPG is a great mid-crunch system. It seems like a perfect fit for people used to concepts like Hit Points, but want to try something that makes more sense than the abstract concept by the d20 rulesets. The system is skill based and doesn’t need to be balanced in order to avoid being broken.
    I liked the critical wounds system, as they can happen quite often, and the hit locations, which when combined can end a fight quickly. I didn’t like the divisions involved in most of the damage calculations. It could become too troublesome to run.
    The rules where nicely written with several details in the sidebar, but I found an odd place or two where they could be better explained.
    In basic combat, it was nice having different attack (Fast/Strong) and different defend options (Dodge/Block/Reposition/Parry), but ultimately in the defences, it didn’t feel too much like an option during combat, and more like an option during character creation (this one blocks, this one dodges, etc).
    There were points where combat felt like dragging, but overall it wasn’t too much.

    What about the Dungeon Crawl?

    Considering I didn’t have a healer with me, I was lucky to survive the dungeon. If I didn’t know (meta knowledge) about the healing potion, a regular party might have perished (though to make things fair I did go through all the rooms in order of appearance like in all my previous plays). Of course, if I had a Witcher character with me, it would have been a lot easier, but it was nice to pit regular characters in the fight.
    I feel like The Witcher is a nice fit for a dungeon crawl, where the hit points mechanics along with the mid-dragging combat speed give room for a party to maneuver. The nice thing is that it doesn’t go without a nice amount of criticals and effects.

    Summary

    Overall as a unique, d10 system, The Witcher TTRPG is very enjoyable, and has managed to hit a sweet spot between traditional d20 systems, skill based d100 systems, and computer RPGs. This combat based dungeon crawl only showed one part of it’s capabilities, and I’m certain that it has much more to offer in the rest of the RPG aspects, and especially the awesome Witcher setting which I haven’t gotten a chance yet to try out.
    Regarding it’s solo capabilties, I’d say it’s possible to be soloed. Bookkeeping can be a chore, as there are many stats and conditions that you have to monitor through combat, but if you keep combatants at a moderate level, it won’t be a problem.

     
  • giorgis 9:10 am on October 6, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Solo   

    A Call to Glory S05 – MERP 

    Continuing at the same challenge in the Level 1 dungeon A Call to Glory from TSR’s Dragon Quest, introductory adventure game, I could not leave Middle Earth Roleplaying Game out of the testing. Despite having extensively played MERP recently in my In the trollshaws adventure, and despite wanting to try out its modern retroclone Against the Darkmaster (aka VsD), I decided to go again with MERP, mainly for ease of use, having the books in print and everything.
    With this playthrough, I’ll have almost completed the d100 fantasy games in my collection.
    Middle Earth Roleplaying is a light Rolemaster sibling, using Tolkien’s setting. Iron Crown Enterprises held the IP license for several years and developed many supplements on the setting.

    I’ll be using a diverse party of 4 characters. I’ll try to include as many different demihuman races and careers as possible to have a party that can deal with most tasks.

    Scrolling through the core rulebook, I found 4 pregenerated characters for the sample adventure, that I’ll be using for this game.


    The Party

    Pregenerated

    • Bali Redhelm, a Dwarf Warrior
    • Boffo Northtook, a Hobbit Scout
    • Galadhil, a Dunadan Ranger
    • Lamalas, a Silvan Elf Mage

    The Adventure

    The heroes have been called before Gustovan, the Burgomaster of Torlynn. Torlynn is a small village set in a quiet, hilly area near the mountains. The heroes have lived here for many years and think of Torlynn as home. Gustovan is known as a wise and kind mayor.
    He asks of the heroes to go explore the old, abandoned, dwarven, iron mine, because strange lights and sounds come from within. They’re to find out if there is something wrong there or if the reports are false.

    The heroes enter the dungeon. It’s entrance is a rough cavern, cut from the stone long ago by dwarves. They check their weapons and start down into the mine, with the wind blowing in their backs.


    A. Tunnel

    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None

    The wind fades away as the heroes move into the mine. A long tunnel leads onward, to the next room.


    B. The First Lair

    I’ll be using the weak orc stats for the kobold and goblin.

    Round 1

    Boffo move to attack WOrc1: MM: 67+50=117: 110
    Lamalas move to the side of the room
    WOrc1 move to attack Lamalas: MM: 39: 60
    Worc2 move to attack Bali: MM: 49: 70
    Bali move to attack Worc2: MM: 7+5-5=7: 50
    Galadhil move to attack Worc2: MM: 88-5=83: 100
    Boffo attacks WOrc1: 49+5-14-15+10-25=10: –
    WOrc1 attacks Lamalas: 56+35-10-5+60-100=36: –
    Worc2 atacks Bali: 32+35-10+70-100=27: –
    Bali attacks Worc2: 22+33+15-5-5-25+50-100=-15: –
    Galadhil attacks Worc2: 08+15+47-25+100-100=45: –

    Round 2

    Lamalas prepares Sleep spell
    Boffo attacks WOrc1: 60+5-14-15+10-25=21: –
    WOrc1 attacks Lamalas: 27+35-10-5=47: –
    Worc2 atacks Bali: 76+35-10=101:10A: 43-20=23: Blow to upper leg. +5 hits. Wears leg armor.
    Bali attacks Worc2: 05: Fumble: 97: Stumble over an unseen, imaginary, deceased turtle. You are very confused. Stunned 3 rounds.
    Galadhil attacks Worc2: 33+15+47-25=70: –

    Round 3

    Lamalas prepares Sleep spell
    Boffo attacks WOrc1: 96+39+5-14-15-15-25=86: 10A: 55-20=35: Thigh strike. +3 hits. If no leg armor: 3 hits per round.
    WOrc1 attacks Lamalas: 28+35-10-5=48: –
    Worc2 atacks Bali: 35+35-10-19=41: –
    Bali stunned
    Galadhil attacks Worc2: 39+15+47-25=76: 7 hits

    Round 4

    Lamalas casts Sleep spell at the Orcs: 59+2=61: -15 RRB
    WOrc1 resistance: 60-15=45/50: Failure. WOrc1 sleeps
    Worc2 resistance: 81-15=66/50: Success. Worc2 resists
    Boffo attacks & moves to WOrc2: 54+5-14-15-25+25=30: –
    Worc2 atacks Bali: 18+35-10-19=24: –
    Bali stunned
    Galadhil attacks Worc2: 47+15+47-25=84: 9A: 49-20=29: Blow to upper leg. +5 hits. If no leg armor: +3 hits & 2 hits/ rnd.

    Round 5

    Lamalas waits
    Boffo attacks WOrc1: 63+5-14-15-25+25=39: –
    Worc2 atacks Bali: 75+35-10-19=81: 6 hits
    Bali stunned
    Galadhil attacks Worc2: 93+15+47-25=130: 23E: 85+20=105: Major abdominal wound. +10 hits. 8 hits per round. -10 to activity. Stunned for 4 rounds.

    Bali switches to warhammer and shield.
    They find a short sword & a leather armor.

    As the heroes enter the room, they notice a couple of beds. Probably used to be the miners’, but now they have new occupants. A couple of goblinoids get up, pick their curved swords and attack.
    They face off each other in combat, Bali and Galadhil against one orc, and Boffo and Lamalas against another. The orc hits Bali on the leg, only his armor saving him from bleeding. He’s disoriented and stumbles on flat ground, stunned. Boffo jabs at the other orc in the thigh, while Lamalas prepares a spell, concentrating.
    Galadhil delivers a scratching wound to the orc, as the elf mage finally casts his spell. The orc in front of him falls in a deep slumber, but the one fighting off the dwarf still stands.
    It growls, shaking off the magic, but receives a sharp cutting strike to the upper leg, by Galadhil’s broadsword. It disregards the profound bleeding wound and hits the stunned dwarf once more, but the chain armor withstands most of the blow. Only for a moment as Galadhil follows up with another slash at the belly. The innards of the orc spill out, and it falls to the floor, dying out, incapacitated.
    The heroes dispatch the other spellstruck orc, and search for anything of value. They find a nice set of leather armor, dwarf or hobbit sized, and a sharp short sword.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    Wandering Monster check: No wandering monster

    Nothing of interest in this narrow cut cavern in the stone. Only the occasional splashing of water driping from the ceiling.


    D. Orc Lair

    I’ll going to be using the medium orc stats for this opponent.
    Only Bali and Galadil have entered the room

    Round 1

    Orc attacks Bali: 44+60-10-25-5=64: 2 hits
    Bali attacks Orc: 05+5+58-30=38: –
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 56+15+47-30=88: 7A: 89-20=69: Medium thigh wound. +6 hits. 1 hit per round. -10 to activity. Stunned 2 rounds.

    Round 2

    Orc -1 hit. Orc stunned.
    Bali attacks Orc: 66+5+58-30-25=74: 3 hits
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 96+82+15+47-30-25=185: 22E: 36+20=56: Minor forearm wound. +4 hits. 2 hits per round. Stunned 1 round.

    Round 3

    Orc -3 hits. Orc stunned.
    Bali attacks Orc: 97+75+5+58-30-25=180: 20E: 56+20=76: Blow breaks bone in leg. +12 hits. -40 to activity. Stunned 2 rounds. Orc is down.

    As soon as the heroes enter this small room, the stench of rotten meat fills their nostrils. With their infravision they make out an orc figure as they close in to engage. The orc wears leather armor and carries sword and shield. It attacks Bali, but the dwarf’s heavy armor withstands most of the blow.
    The orc parries Bali’s attack, but Galadhil’s blade cut deep in the orc’s thigh. The monster screams in pain, and grabs the bleeding thigh.
    Bali hits the stunned orc, but his strike is weak. Galadhil hits the orc to the forearm, causing another bleeding wound. The orc hasn’t had time to react as the two adventurers deliver strike after strike. Finally, the dwarf aims at the orcs leg. The blow breaks its bone. It falls down, incapacitated, unable to react as it bleeds out.
    The dwarf notices a loose stone slab on the floor. Pushing it aside he finds a bag of gold, probably spoils belonging to the defeated orc.


    E. Trapped Room

    Boffo: Perception: 03-37+28= Absolute Failure
    Boffo: MM: 43+50=93: 70: Failure: 86-30: 56: Clothing catches on fire. Takes 2 rnds to extinguish. +12 hits. 8 hits per rnd afire. Stunned 1 rnd.

    A small empty room, with a funny smell. Black ash and soot cover the floors and walls. A steel door with an iron handle sits in the middle of the floor.
    Boffo looks around for traps, but finds none. As the halfling tries to open the door he hears a clicking noise. He’s not fast enough to avoid a jet of greek fire, that hits him and sets him on fire. It takes him awhile to put the flames out, and he escapes with a few burns. At last he opens the trapdoor, but it was just a trap as behind it is only rock.


    F. Gnoll Lair

    Using strong orc stats.

    Round 1

    Orc attacks Bali: 44+75-10-25-5=64: 5 hits
    Bali attacks Orc: 96+94+5+58-30=223: 22E: 23+20=43: Blow to forearm. +5 hits. If no arm armor, stunned 1 round.
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 20+15+47-30=52: 1 hit

    Round 2

    Orc stunned.
    Bali attacks Orc: 01: Fumble: 03-20=-17: Lose your grip. No further activity this round.
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 43+15+47-30-38=37: –

    Round 3

    Orc attacks Bali: 100+31+75-10-25-5=166: 18E: 46+20=66: Medium thigh wound. +6 hits. 1 hit per round. -10 to activity. Stunned 2 rounds.
    Bali stunned.
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 68+15+47-30=100: 9 hits

    Round 4

    Orc attacks Galadhil: 80+75-10-25+5=125: 16C: 07: Minor calf wound. 1 hit per round.
    Bali stunned.
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 68+15+47-30=100: 9 hits

    Round 5

    Lamalas prepares Sleep spell
    Boffo moves to the side of the corridor
    Bali disengages
    Orc attacks Galadhil: 34+75-10-25+5=79: 5 hits
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 04+15+47-30=36: –

    Round 6

    Lamalas prepares Sleep spell
    Boffo waits
    Bali bandages himself
    Orc attacks Galadhil: 11+75-10-25+5=56: –
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 89+15+47-30=121: 13C: 82: Slash weapon arm. +10 hits. 1 hit per round. If no arm armor: muscle and tendon damage, arm useless.

    Round 7

    Lamalas prepares Sleep spell
    Boffo waits
    Bali waits
    Orc drops shield and takes the scimitar with the left arm
    Galadhil attacks Orc: 56+15+47-5=113: 12B: 38-10=28: Blow to upper leg. +5 hits. If no leg armor: +3 hits & 3 hits/ rnd.

    Round 8

    Orc drops from blood loss.
    Lamalas doesn’t cast spell.
    Galadhil bandages himself.

    They find Kur’s drink.

    Bali: 25 hits healed
    Galadhil: 25 hits healed
    Bali: 30 hits healed

    Boffo equips short sword & leather armor.

    The heroes enter a room and a dozen of small insects buzz past them. Biting flies are everywhere. A large furred orc is sharpening his scimitar, and as he sees them attacks.
    He hits Bali, who strikes back with his warhammer, hitting hard the orc’s forearm, stunning him. Galadhil follows up with a strike, but only the end of the blade hits, barely scratching the wicked beast.
    Bali is anxious to get a hit while his opponent is stunned, but he fumbles, losing his grip and has to grip his warhammer again. The orc finds time to recover and counters back with a strong hit, wounding Bali at the thigh. The dwarf can’t do much than grin in pain try to parry his opponent’s blows. Galadhil hits the orc, but only blunt impact hurts the orc, as the chain hauberk dissipates the blow.
    With Bali stunned, the orc turns its attention to Galadhil, hitting the ranger’s calf in a low sweeping slashing strike, causing bleeding. Galadhil delivers another hit that can’t get through the chain hauberk.
    The dwarf warrior is wounded so the supporting heroes prepare for the worse. They want to try to draw the big orc out. Boffo steps to the side ready to ambush him, while Lamalas prepares another spell, concentrating, as Bali steps outside.
    The orc tries to hit Galadhil who parries with his shield, and strikes back, slashing the orc’s weapon arm, rendering it useless and causing profound bleeding.
    Despite its predicament, the orc stands strong, and drops its shield and starts fighting with it’s off hand.
    Not for long. Galadhil sinks his blade into the orc’s foot, and the creature perishes from blood loss.
    Searching the creature, they find an invigorating honey-like potion. Lamalas recognizes it for a potion of healing. Kur’s Drink. Bali takes two strong gulps, and Galadhil another one. Their wounds quickly heal, and they can continue again the quest.
    Seeing the dangers they face, Boffo decides to equip himself with the short sword and the leather armor.


    G. Empty Room

    The heroes go through a rough room like a cave, a small pile of dirt is at one corner of the room. The party moves onward.


    H. Broken Room

    Hard MM

    Round 1

    Boffo: 16: 5%
    Lamalas: 41+15=56: 30%
    Bali: 21: 10%
    Galadhil: 88-5=83: 50%

    Round 2

    Boffo: 30: 10%+5%= 15%
    Lamalas: 93+15=108: 80%+30%= 110%
    Bali: 43: 10%+20%= 30%
    Galadhil: 38-5=33: 10%+50%= 60%

    I. Narrow Tunnel

    Round 3

    Lamalas: Prepare Sleep spell
    Boffo: 05-60=-65:F: 23: You slip. 30% Chance of falling. -20 from maneuvers for 2 rounds: 01: Falls.
    Bali: 95: 60%+30%= 90%
    Galadhil: 25-5=20: 5%+60%=65%
    Orc MM to attack Lamalas: 47: 70%
    Orc attack Lamalas: 97+73+60-10-100+70=190: 48E: 01+20: Thigh strike, +3 hits. If no leg armor: 3 hits per round. Lamalas is down.

    Round 4

    Lamalas: +3 hits
    Boffo: stands up.
    Bali: MM to move inside & attack Orc: 09: 5%+90%: 95%. Didn’t move inside.
    Galadhil: MM to move inside & attack Orc: 96+52-5=100%+65%: Moves inside and fights Orc.
    Orc MM to move and attack Galadhil: 64: 80%
    Orc attack Galadhil: 86+60-10-25+80-100=91: 12B: 88-10=78: Medium thigh wound. +6 hits. 1 hit per round. -10 to activity. Stunned 2 rounds.
    Galadhil Stunned

    Round 6

    Lamalas: +3 hits
    Boffo: 02-01-20=F: 45: You stumble. 45% chance of falling. -30 from maneuvers for 2 rounds. 19: Falls.
    Bali: MM for rocks: 66: 40%: Success
    Orc attacks Galadhil: 73+60-10-25-21=77: 4A: 17-20=-3: Weak strike yields no extra damage. +0 hits.
    Galadhil Stunned.

    Round 7

    Lamalas: +3 hits
    Boffo: stands up
    Bali: MM for rocks: 56: 30%: Success
    Orc attacks Galadhil: 88+60-10-25=91: 22C(A): 24: Blow to upper leg: +5 hits. If no leg armor: +3 hits & 2 hits/ rnd. Galadhil is down.

    Round 8

    Lamalas: +3 hits. Lamalas is dead.
    Galadhil: +3 hits.
    Boffo: 83-30= 53: 20%+15%: 35%
    Bali moves 10′ inside.
    Orc attacks Bali: 17+60-10-25+10= 52: 0
    Bali attacks Orc: 93+58+5-5= 151: 20E: 10+20=30: Blow to side. +4 hits. -40 to activity for 1 round.

    Round 9

    Galadhil: +3 hits.
    Boffo: 28: 10%+35%: 45%
    Orc attacks Bali: 100+35+60-10-25+10-40= 130: 26D(B): 98+10=108 & 88: Sever weapon arm. 15 hits per round. Down and unconscious immediately. Shatter knee. +9 hits. -60 to activity. Knocked down and stunned for 3 rounds.

    Round 10

    Boffo loads sling.
    Orc MM to attack Boffo: 26: 10%: 45% remains.

    Round 11

    Boffo attacks: 06: Fumble: 35: Fumble ammunition. Lose this round. -50 to activity next round. +56
    Orc MM to attack Boffo: 26: 10%: 45% remains.

    Round 12

    Boffo loads sling.
    Orc MM to attack Boffo: 83: 50%: reached Boffo.
    Orc attacks Boffo: 30+60-40-100+50= 0: –

    Round 13

    Boffo attacks with short sword: 97+97+80-5+10-14=265: 22E: 16+20=36: Minor chest wound. +3 hits. 1 hit per round. -5 to activity.
    Orc attacks Boffo: 39+60-40-5= 54: 0

    Round 14

    Boffo attacks with short sword: 38-5+10-14=29: –
    Orc attacks Boffo: 41+60-40-5= 56: 0

    Round 15

    Boffo attacks with short sword: 17-5+10-14=8: –
    Orc attacks Boffo: 28+60-40-5= 43: 0

    Round 16

    Boffo attacks with short sword: 98+96+4-5+10-14=189: 22E: 28+20=48: Minor chest wound. +3 hits. 1 hit per round. -5 to activity. Orc is down.

    Round 17

    Bali is dead

    So the adventure book states that if the heroes have a hard time, give them an extra Kur's Drink potion. Right now Bali and Lamalas are dead and Galadhil has lost over 84 hit points (he's at -35, with death at -90). So I suppose healing Boffo won't hurt, but it won't make much of a difference either.

    Boffo finds a Kur’s Drink.
    Boffo drinks it all: 35 hit points healed.

    As the party goes through this large chamber cut from the stone, they notice the walls and ceiling are cracked, and huge chunks of stone have fallen on the floor. Their vibrations cause some more to fall as they pass through, so they walk carefully to attempt to avoid it without harm.
    Lamalas is the first to reach the door to the other side, and by the time he opens it, Galadhil is halfway there with Bali and Boffo way back, as falling rocks impede their movement.
    Lamalas opens the door, to find a narrow hallway, and duddenly the door at the end of the hall swings open, and a foul orc, lifts its gleaming black axe and marches towards him.
    The elf prepares to cast another sleep spell, and Bali closes in to assist, but they both are too late. The orc brings his battle axe down at the elf’s thigh, swinging it with both hands. The strike is so strong that the elf falls incapacitated due to shock, and lies bleeding.
    Before Bali has a chance to enter the hallway, Galadhil gets past him and faces the orc one to one. The orc swings his axe low, and hits the ranger again, and again and again. Galadhil can’t react to the successive strikes, and he drops unable to fight longer.
    The orc enters the broken room and challenges Bali. The dwarf parries a blow and hits the orc to the side. The orc counters with a swing top down. The axe cuts off the dwarf’s arm, severing it, in an arc that reaches Bali’s knee shattering it. Bali drops immediately, a pool of blood where his hand lies.
    The hobbit draws his sling, and tries to shoot at the orc, but fear overcomes him and he fumbles the ammo, losing precious time. By the time the or is upon him, he has no option but to draw his blade.
    The orc doesn’t expect much resistance from such a small sized opponent. Boffo uses this to is advantage and fights close with his short sword, where the orc can’t hit easily with his big two handed axe. Boffo manages to avoid all his enemy’s attacks, and stabs the orc twice in the chest. With the final hit, the orc drops. The hobbit notices a vial of the same kind of potion they found before, hanging from the orc’s belt, and snatches it quickly.
    Boffo quickly runs to his companions, but there’s no hope for the elf and the dwarf. He stabilizes Galadhil, gulps down his healing potion, and removes his leather armor to walk silently. He will sneak in the shadows to survive if possible.


    J. The Story Room

    I’m not rolling a wandering monsters check since the next room has a major fight.

    Boffo: Read Rune: 31-25: 6: Failure

    Boffo Northtook enters a large chamber that has been polished smooth. Ancient dwarvish runes are carved into the walls. He can’t understand a single word that is being said, and moves on to the next room.


    K. The Iron Mine

    Boffo will attempt to ambush the first orc miner.

    Round 0

    Boffo: Stalk/Hide (vs Perception): 43+27-5: (Light MM): 80%: He can move 40′
    Boffo: Ambush: 06-14+35+10= 57: –

    Round 1

    Boffo will attempt to Run away to the next room.
    Conflicting action between him and the orc he tried to stab: 79+50 vs 74+10: Boffo wins.
    Boffo Run: 41+50=91: 100%
    Boffo gets into the next room, and reaches the door to the other side.

    L. Tunnel of Death

    Boffo Perception: 29+28=57+30:+20=107: Near Success: You gain some information on the topic that required the perception roll, and you are aware that you missed something. You may try again after 3 rounds of contemplation.

    So Boffo is quite certain the door is trapped, but he can’t attempt to disarm it. He can only open it and hope for the best as the four orcs enter the hallway.

    Round 2

    Boffo opens the door to the next room.
    Deadfall trap triggered. Everyone must make an MM maneuver of 100% or suffer a C Impact critical.
    Boffo: 10+50=60:80%: 69: Blast to shield arm. +10 hits. Shield or arm armor destroyed. If none: arm broken and useless, stunned 3 rounds.
    Orc1: 18+10=28: 20%: 57: Strike to leg. Knocked down. +8 hits. If no leg armor: stunned 2 rounds.
    Orc2: 37+10=47: 30%: 04: Not even a scratch. +0 hits.
    Orc3: 40+10=50: 30%: 98: Strike abdomen. +18 hits. Stunned 12 rounds.
    Orc4: 50+10=60: 40%: 29: Staggered by strike to side. +10 hits. Stunned 1 round.

    Round 3

    Boffo: stunned
    Orc1: stunned
    Orc2 attacks Boffo: 10+35+20-40=25: –
    Orc3: stunned
    Orc4: stunned

    Round 4

    Boffo: stunned
    Orc1: stunned
    Orc2 attacks Boffo: 53+35+20-40=68: –
    Orc3: stunned
    Orc4: recovers, and takes position behind Orc2

    Round 5

    Boffo: stunned
    Orc1: recovers and takes position behind Orc4
    Orc2 attacks Boffo: 35+35+20-40=50: –
    Orc3 stunned
    Orc4 waits

    Round 6

    Boffo attack Orc2: 11+10-14-5=2: –
    Orc1 waits
    Orc2 attacks Boffo: 53+35-40=48: –
    Orc3 stunned
    Orc4 waits

    Round 7

    Boffo attack Orc2: 49+10-14-5=40: –
    Orc1 waits
    Orc2 attacks Boffo: 60+35-40=55: –
    Orc3 stunned
    Orc4 waits

    Round 8

    Boffo attack Orc2: 74+10-14-5=65: –
    Orc1 waits
    Orc2 attacks Boffo: 62+35-40=57: –
    Orc3 stunned
    Orc4 waits

    Round 9

    Boffo attack Orc2: 97+60+10-14-5=148: 30E: 70+20: Disemboweled, dies instantly. 25% your weapon is stuck in opponent for 2 rounds: 56: Not stuck.
    Orc1 waits
    Orc3 stunned
    Orc4 attacks Boffo: 91+75-40=126: 23E: 76+20=96: Knocked out for 6 hours with a strike to side of head. +15 hits. If no helm: dies instantly. Boffo dies.
    TPK

    Silently,Boffo enters a vast chamber that is roughly carved and still being worked. Small veins of iron ore still line the walls. Four orcs work the mine, but the noise of mining covers Boffo’s footsteps, who gains the element of surprise.
    He tries to stab an orc from behind with his short sword, but at the last moment, the orc turns around and sees him, foiling his attack, and shouting the alarm.
    Boffo escapes at the last moment swiftly and runs forward deeper into the mine into a narrow tunnel, with the four orcs at his trail. It is a smooth and straight tunnel. The floor is marked with the dark stains of dried blood. As Boffo reaches the door to the other side, he tries to do a rushed examination, and although he can’t pinpoint it, he feels like there is a trap mechanism attached. Hearing the shouts of the orcs charging down the hallway, he knows he has no other option but to open the door.
    Alas, despite his awareness, a pile of rocks fall upon him and the orcs. His left arm is broken and useless. Some orcs are stunned, but one wasn’t hit by a single stone. He climbs atop the rubble and charges the stunned Boffo who, tries to parry as best as he can.
    The two combatants exchange several blows, but neither one is too focused on the fight, still shocked by the noise of the trap. Finally, Boffo finds an opening, his short sword disembowels the orc, killing it instantly, black blood spilling everywhere. But as Boffo is over his downed opponent, the larger orc of the four, brings down his scimitar on his head. The strike to the side of the head is severe even for a Northtook, and the poor hobbit dies.

    The System

    I’ve played a lot of MERP during my past adventure in the Trollshaws, so I’m quite acquainted with the system. The turn sequence again, leaves a lot to be desired. Every time I need to pause and think who acts first. Also it’s not always intuitive. The best example was the fight with the orc bearing a two handed axe, but because it didn’t wear heavy armor it could attack before most of his opponents. Unless I’m missing something in the rules, which is very possible, since the book suffers similarly to WHFRP1e from layout and rules hidden in several places all over the book.
    The enemy’s stats (orcs) could have been better detailed as I was missing several pieces of information that are necessary and I had to make rulings on my own.
    Nevertheless combat is interesting and, of course, deadly.

    What about the Dungeon Crawl?

    MERP is very deadly for dungeon crawling. Without any meta currency to aid the player, a group of 4 diverse classes will soon meet it’s end in a dungeon, unless they head back, recover and enter the dungeon again. A single strike can end a hero, and there’s no easy reviving. It’s truly old-school, and even with high-fantasy healing involved (Kur’s Drink) success is not going to be easy.
    A fair bit of luck is going to be needed, and maybe, if we go the old-school way, a few men-at-arms.

    Summary

    This is a crunchy system with a fair bit of bookkeeping. I love the details, the information and the results. But considering the other d100 systems I’ve played these past days, it comes short. With regards to soloing crunchy d100 systems, Harnmaster was the obvious winner of the family, with Mythras next and the other two old-school games coming up last, but not least. I enjoyed every single one of them, as the narrative feedback was enough to give a detailed combat, and the deadliness made me try to consider different approaches. Maybe I’ll get to try VsD or WHFRP4e in the future, to see how their modern reiterations have tackled some issues, but first I’ll go along with the rest of the (non-d100) games on my list.

     
    • giannidowns 8:56 pm on October 6, 2021 Permalink | Reply

      Great fun to read this series as it unfolds. Do you have a list of games you think you’ll run this through? I realize that you may lose interest before you complete the list, but I was curious to read your intentions (didn’t notice it listed in a quick search)

      Liked by 1 person

      • giorgis 10:30 pm on October 6, 2021 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you!
        Yes, I avoided listing the games on purpose, in case I set up expectations that I won’t follow through.
        I don’t have a particular list, but on top, there’s The Witcher and (maybe) Conan 2d20. I am interested in both these systems because they have their own unique mechanics (not d100 or d20). My main concern is that they’re very well ingrained with their respective settings. I’ll have some reading to do beforehand.
        At the bottom of my list are games I’ve played a lot, which are mid to low crunch like Savage Worlds and MiniSix, and I more or less know how they’re going to behave.
        I leave some room in the middle for games that I might have forgotten, and I’m curious to try out.

        Like

        • giannidowns 11:02 pm on October 6, 2021 Permalink

          I completely understand! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and I look forward to the next installment.

          Liked by 1 person

  • giorgis 6:05 pm on October 2, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: hackmaster, Solo   

    A Call to Glory S04 – Hackmaster 

    Continuing at the same challenge in the Level 1 dungeon A Call to Glory from TSR’s Dragon Quest, introductory adventure game, this time using Hackmaster Basic Free.
    Hackmaster was sitting on my digital library for a while, asking to be played. I always wondered how the tick-time-count would work. Back in the ’90s I had homebrewed a system using a similar count for funsies, so I’m curious as to what a professional application would look like in practice.

    I’ll be using a diverse party of 4 characters. I’ll try to include as many different demihuman races and careers as possible to have a party that can deal with most tasks.

    Scrolling through the core rulebook, I found several pregenerated characters, and I chose some typical stereotypes that I’ll be using for this game.


    The Party

    Pregenerated

    • Narvi, Dwarf Fighter
    • Gundo, Halfling Thief
    • Elemmas, Elf Mage
    • Selre, Human Cleric

    The Adventure

    The heroes have been called before Gustovan, the Burgomaster of Torlynn. Torlynn is a small village set in a quiet, hilly area near the mountains. The heroes have lived here for many years and think of Torlynn as home. Gustovan is known as a wise and kind mayor.
    He asks of the heroes to go explore the old, abandoned, dwarven, iron mine, because strange lights and sounds come from within. They’re to find out if there is something wrong there or if the reports are false.

    The heroes enter the dungeon. It’s entrance is a rough cavern, cut from the stone long ago by dwarves. They check their weapons and start down into the mine, with the wind blowing in their backs.

    Notes: In order to accomodate the Wandering Monster checks, while lacking a turn sequence, I’ll do a check every 10 seconds (out of combat).


    A. Tunnel

    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None

    The wind fades away as the heroes move into the mine. A long tunnel leads onward, to the next room.


    B. The First Lair

    Hackmaster has almost all D&D relevant monsters, so I can use both a goblin and a kobold

    Name Initiative
    Narvi 9
    Gundo 8
    Elemmas 6
    Selre 8
    Goblin 11
    Kobold 4

    I’ll be denoting movement with the ‘>’ arrows, attacks with an ‘X’
    Small creatures move one space every 2 seconds
    ToP stands for ‘threshold of pain’

    1. Kob >
    2. Kob >
    3. Kob >, Kob X Narvi: 17/6: Hit: 2-2: 0 damage
    4. Narvi X Kob: 11/21: Near Perfect Defense: 15/5: Hit: 2 Damage to Narvi
      Elemmas >, Elemmas X Kob: 14/8: Hit: 1 Damage
    5. Gundo >, Gundo X Kob: 3/8: Miss
      Selre >
    6. Selre >
      Gob >
    7. Selre >, Selre X Gob: 12/13: Miss
    8. Gob X Selre: 17/12: Hit: 5 Damage
    9. Kob X Narvi: 13/12: Hit: 1 Damage
    10. Elemmas X Kob: 9/19: Miss
    11. Gundo X Kob: 19/11: Hit: 10 Damage: ToP save: 5/4: Fail: Kob is down
    12. Narvi >
      Elemmas >
      Gundo: Coup de grace X Kob
    13. Elemmas >
    14. Gob X Selre: 13/18: Miss
      Elemmas >, Elemmas X Gob: 4/11: Miss
      Narvi >, Narvi X Gob: 8/13: Miss
    15. Gundo kills Kob
    16. Gundo >
    17. Selre X Gob: 0/17: Miss
      Gundo X Gob: 18/22: NPD: 9/25: Miss
    18. Elemmas X Gob: 16/12: Hit: 4 Damage
    19. Gob X Selre: 16/11: Hit: 6 Damage
    20. Narvi X Gob: 20/6: Hit: 14 Damage: ToP save: 7/6: Fail: Gob is down
    21. Gundo: Coup de grace X Gob
    22. Gundo kills Gob

    They find: leather armor & broad axe

    As the heroes enter the room, they notice a couple of beds. Probably used to be the miners’, but now they have new occupants. A couple of goblinoids get up, pick their weapons and attack.
    The kobold charges at Narvi, its spear hitting him, but doesn’t get through the leather armor. Narvi hits back, but leaves an opening for the kobold, who quickly takes advantage and score a minor hit to his ribcage. The elf and the halfling surround the kobold, with Elemmas wounding it.
    Meanwhile Selre has engaged the goblin, who parries his blow, and hits him back with his curved sword.
    The kobold hurts Narvi once more, only to be pierced through by Gundo. The halfling drops the goblin down as he pulls his blade, dipped in black blood. Defenseless, the kobold does nothing as the halfling positions himself right behind him, and executes the creature with a thrust downwards to his spine.
    The party of heroes come to the assistance of Selre who parries the goblins blows. After a few failed attempts from the combatants to wound their opponents, Elemmas spills blood with his short sword. Just a second later the goblin wounds Selre who screams in pain. Narvi brings down his axe to the goblin, which falls unconscious, only to be finished off by Gundo.
    The heroes search the room and find a nice set of leather armor and a hand axe.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    Wandering Monster check: No wandering monster

    Nothing of interest in this narrow cut cavern in the stone. Only the occasional splashing of water driping from the ceiling.


    D. Orc Lair

    Name Initiative
    Narvi 13
    Gundo 4
    Elemmas 12
    Selre 7
    Orc 7
    1. Gundo X Orc: 18/8: Hit: 4 Damage
    2. Orc X Gundo: 20/22: Miss

    3. 12: Gundo X Orc: 20/6: Hit: 12 Damage: ToP Save: 17/6: Failure: Orc is down
    4. Gundo: Coup de grace X Orc
    5. Gundo kills Orc

    As soon as the heroes enter this small room, the stench of rotten meat fills their nostrils. With their infravision they make out an orc figure as they close in to engage.
    Gundo, charges swiftly and wounds the orc, who tries to hit back but fails. With another quick strike, the halfling’s longsword pierces the lungs of the orc. It gurgles black blood, and the halfling sends him to the afterlife soon after. Within less than 10 seconds, the entire fight is over.


    E. Trapped Room

    Gundo: Avoid traps: 7/20: Success

    A small empty room, with a funny smell. Black ash and soot cover the floors and walls. A steel door with an iron handle sits in the middle of the floor.
    Gundo looks around for traps, but finds none. As the halfling tries to open the door he hears a clicking noise. He’s fast enough to avoid a jet of greek fire, that lets of to his head. Thanking his quick reflexes he opens the trapdoor, but it was just a trap as behind it is only rock.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    Wandering Monster check: Bugbear

    Name Initiative
    Narvi 10
    Gundo 6
    Elemmas 10
    Selre 8
    Bugbear 4
    1. BgB >
    2. BgB >, BgB X Gundo: 22/5: Hit: 4 Damage
    3. Gundo X BgB: 17/20: Perfect Defense: 10/11: Miss
    4. Gundo X BgB: 4/7: Miss
    5. BgB X Gundo: 15/24: Miss
    6. Gundo X BgB: 6/12: Miss
    7. BgB X Gundo: 17/16: Hit: 10 Damage, Knockback
    8. Gundo X BgB: 12/13: Miss
    9. BgB X Gundo: 15/17: Miss
    10. Gundo X BgB: 17/15: Hit: 5 Damage
    11. BgB X Gundo: 11/18: Miss
    12. Gundo X BgB: 8/15: Miss
    13. Gundo X BgB: 21/10: Hit: 7 Damage
    14. BgB X Gundo: 23/25: Miss
    15. Gundo X BgB: 7/11: Miss
    16. BgB X Gundo: 18/27: NPD: 8/11: Miss
    17. Gundo X BgB: 13/14: Miss
    18. BgB X Gundo: 12/25: Miss
    19. Gundo X BgB: 19/9: Hit: 8 Damage
    20. BgB X Gundo: 24/17: Hit: 9 Damage
    21. Gundo X BgB: 19/3: Hit: 3 Damage
    22. Gundo X BgB: 20/16: Hit: 3 Damage
    23. BgB X Gundo: 15/17: Miss
    24. Gundo X BgB: 13/2: Hit: 7 Damage
    25. BgB X Gundo: 19/18: Hit: 11 Damage: Gundo is down
    26. Narvi >, BgB X Narvi: 20/17: Hit: 19 Damage: ToP save: 20/5: Failure: Narvi is down
    27. Elemmas >
      Selre >
    28. BgB >, BgB X Elemmas: 23/22: Hit:10 Damage: ToP save: 17/2: Failure: Elemmas is down
    29. Selre >, BgB X Selre: 27/11: Hit: 26 Damage: Selre is down
      TPK

    As the party checks the small rooms in the narrow jagged corridor, a huge bulking creature appears. They’re all set up in line against it, and cannot take advantage of their numbers. It grows and charges at Gundo. Behind him Narvi, Elemmas and Selre can only watch the fight.
    The massive humanoid hits Gundo again and again with its morningstar. The halfling fights back valiantly and wounds it severly, but is no match for the monster. The halfling lasts for more than a minute, but in the end, Gundo falls, and quickly Narvi steps up to take his place. The bugbear’s reach is greater though, and with a quick hit, before Narvi has even got a chance to score a hit, the morningstar smashes his helmet and he’s down. Elemmas considers casting a spell, but it’s too late, as the morningstar is the last thing he sees. Selre ponders fleeing, but he’s no coward. He faces off the bugbear, and a quick blow to the ribcage sends him flying back 5′, dead.
    Thus ends the story of the heroes.

    The System

    So first of all regarding the time-tick-count system. It’s really good on practice, really difficult to solo bookkeep, and there are some cases where there are problems with RAW. For example, because the bugbear was able to finish off it’s opponents one by one, he could attack each and every second. Unless I missed a rule, in the book, there was nothing there to prevent it. In general I found the rules lacking. Both the layout and the explanations felt like they were missing some parts. I don’t know if this has to do with the fact that it’s the Basic (Free) version, but that’s what I have and tested upon.
    Combat was okay. On one hand it is a rule system that makes sense mechanically (as opposed to say D&D), but it fails and falls in the Hit Points abstraction trap, and it fails to take advantage of the opposed rolls to generate interesting results. You end up with rolling so many dice, but the results are mostly binary, with exceptions regarding critical hits/defenses/fumbles. It was mostly evident in my fight with the bugbear, where there were a lot of hits that did nothing or close to nothing. No narrative feedback whatsoever.
    Explanations on skills, traps, and similar leaves a lot to be desired. Also I found at least two cases where the example provided didn’t fit with the rule described, which made things even more confusing for me.
    A nice system, but there is a lot of room for improvement, which seems to have been stagnant considering its age.

    What about the Dungeon Crawl?

    Hackmaster lends itself nicely to dungeon crawling, even though it lacks a meta luck mechanic or easy healing.
    The TPK didn’t happen due to bad dice rolls, or the fact that the bugbear was overpowered for my party. It mainly happened because as a solo player, I could not see the tactical options I had. After my party perished, I sat and wondered what could I have done better, and I realized I could have set a nice trap for the bugbear. The fighter and the mage could have entered the side room, and the halfling could retreat in the corridor. Then they could flank it and take advantage of their numbers, and maybe a nice scorch spell.
    The failure lies entirely upon myself here, and it’s a nice opportunity to consider the tactical options provided in a dungeon board.

    Summary

    I could see a potential new version of Hackmaster working better than this one. I’m glad I took the opportunity to play this out, because now I know how the ticks mechanic works. It’s really interesting, and I think the best part of it is the granular movement which feels more realistic. Melee attacks timing leave a lot to be desired though.

     
  • giorgis 5:44 pm on September 30, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Solo,   

    A Call to Glory S03 – Warhammer Fantasy RP1e 

    Continuing at the same challenge in the Level 1 dungeon A Call to Glory from TSR’s Dragon Quest, introductory adventure game, this time using Warhammer Fantasy Roleplaying Game 1st Edition.
    I got this through Humble Bundle, and was itching to try it out. I’m an old fan of the Warhammer Fantasy universe, as I was playing the Warhammer Fantasy Battles 4th Edition, back in the ’90s.

    I’ll be using a diverse party of 4 characters. I’ll try to include as many different demihuman races and careers as possible to have a party that can deal with most tasks.

    Scrolling through the core rulebook, I found 4 pregenerated characters for the sample adventure, that I’ll be using for this game.


    The Party

    Pregenerated

    • Jordi, a Dwarf Trollslayer
    • Mellory, a Human Hunter
    • Soko, a Halfling Burglar
    • Bianka, an Elf Wizard’s Apprentice

    The Adventure

    The heroes have been called before Gustovan, the Burgomaster of Torlynn. Torlynn is a small village set in a quiet, hilly area near the mountains. The heroes have lived here for many years and think of Torlynn as home. Gustovan is known as a wise and kind mayor.
    He asks of the heroes to go explore the old, abandoned, dwarven, iron mine, because strange lights and sounds come from within. They’re to find out if there is something wrong there or if the reports are false.

    The heroes enter the dungeon. It’s entrance is a rough cavern, cut from the stone long ago by dwarves. They check their weapons and start down into the mine, with the wind blowing in their backs.


    A. Tunnel

    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None
    Wandering monster check: None

    The wind fades away as the heroes move into the mine. A long tunnel leads onward, to the next room.


    B. The First Lair

    I’ll be using the lesser goblin for the kobold

    Name Initiative
    Bianka 68
    Soko 50
    Lesser Goblin 40
    Mellory 37
    Goblin 20
    Jodri 13

    Round 1

    LGo Charge (+10) Jodri: 27/35: Hit: Body: 4+3-4= 3 Damage: Jodri: 4/7 Wounds
    Mellory vs LGo: 32/30: Miss
    Go Charge (+10) Soko: 10/35: Hit: Soko Parry: 08/28: Block: Head: 2-5+3-2= 0 Damage
    Jodri vs LGo: 09/42: Hit: Right Leg: 1+6-2= 5 Damage: 0/5 Wounds
    Jodri vs LGo: 02/42: Hit: Right Arm: 1+6-2= 5 Damage: +5 Critical Hit: 70: CV 16: LGo is down

    Round 2

    Bianka vs Go: 18/41: Right Leg: 2+1-3= 0 Damage
    Soko vs Go: 30/28: Miss
    Mellory vs Go: 01/30: Head: 3+3-3= 3 Damage: 4/7 Wounds
    Go vs Soko: 43/25: Miss
    Jodri Charge (+10) Go: 97/52: Miss
    Jodri vs Go: 39/42: Hit: Left Leg: 1+6-3= 4 Damage: 0/7 Wounds

    Round 3

    Bianka vs Go: 82/41: Miss
    Soko vs Go: 13/28: Right Arm: 2+3-3= 2 Damage: +2 Critical Hit: 56: CV 12: Go is down

    Find: Vial of Blessed Water, Leather Armor

    As the heroes enter the room, they notice a couple of beds. Probably used to be the miners’, but now they have new occupants. A couple of goblinoids get up, pick their weapons and attack.
    The smaller goblin charges at Jodri, its curved sword hitting him, and causing some minor cuts on his tough body. Mellory attacks the creature, but it avoids him.
    The bigger goblin charges at Soko, who parries the strike, and manages to avoid getting hurt.
    The trollslayer lets of a loud road, and brings down his heavy axe with both hands at the smaller goblin that hurt him. He hits its right side, at the leg, and follows with a strong blow that smashes through the arm and into the chest, caving in one side of the ribcage. The arm is completely destroyed and blood showers Jodri and the goblin, who collapses dying almost instantly from shock and blood loss.
    Bianka hacks at the other goblin, but her dagger strike is too weak to cause a wound. Soko jabs at it too, but misses. Mellory attacks the creature, his axe, dealing a blow to its head. The goblin picks out the weakest target, slashing at the halfling, but is too disoriented to land a hit. Jodri charges, his first attack missing by a lot, but his second, hits the goblin’s leg, the creature screaming in pain.
    The heroes gang up on the poor creature. First Bianka fails to hit, but the halfling’s short sword hits the right arm. The goblin staring in horror as blood pumps from the mangled stump of the wrist. The goblin’s curved blade drops, the severed hand still clutching it, and the goblin falls unconcsious to the ground.
    Searching through the room, the heroes find a vial of blessed water, and a leather armor, perfectly fitting Soko.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    Nothing of interest in this narrow cut cavern in the stone. Only the occasional splashing of water driping from the ceiling.


    D. Orc Lair

    Name Initiative
    Bianka 68
    Soko 50
    Mellory 37
    Orc 20
    Jodri 13

    Round 1

    Mellory vs Orc: 13/30: Right Arm: 2+3-4= 1 Damage: 6/7 Wounds
    Orc vs Mellory: 303/33: Right Arm: 5+3-3= 5 Damage: 1/6 Wounds
    Jodri: vs Orc: 25/42: Body: 3+6-4= 5 Damage: 1/7 Wounds
    Jodri vs Orc: 100/42: Miss

    Round 2

    Mellory vs Orc: 02/30: Right Arm: 6 (43) +3-4=5 Damage: +4 Critical Hit: 50: CV 15: Orc is down

    As soon as the heroes enter this small room, the stench of rotten meat fills their nostrils. With their infravision they make out an orc figure as they close in to engage.
    Mellory lunges at the orc, hitting it’s right arm, and scratching it barely, it hits back, with it’s axe at the ranger’s weapon arm, hurting the ranger. Jodri joins the fight, his battle axe hitting the orc at the chest. The orc is taken aback, for just enough time for Mellory to follow up with another strike at the orc’s right arm. His blow destroy’s the orc’s shoulder joint almost totally – the arm hangs limply, a mass of tattered and puply flesh with protruding fragments of bone. By chance, one of the bone splinters has severed a major artery, and after a fraction of a second the orc collapses, with blood pouting out from the ruins of his shoulder. Death from shock and blood loss is almost instantaneous.
    The dwarf notices a loose stone slab on the floor. Pushing it aside he finds a bag of gold, probably spoils belonging to the defeated orc.


    E. Trapped Room

    Soko: Search: 65/50: Failure to detect
    Soko: Avoid traps: 41/50 (+10): Success

    A small empty room, with a funny smell. Black ash and soot cover the floors and walls. A steel door with an iron handle sits in the middle of the floor.
    Soko looks around for traps, but finds none. As the halfling tries to open the door he hears a clicking noise. He’s fast enough to avoid a jet of greek fire, that lets of to his head. Thanking his quick reflexes he opens the trapdoor, but it was just a trap as behind it is only rock.


    F. Gnoll Lair

    Using HobGoblin stats

    Soko sneak HGo: 04/30 (+10): Success, Ambush

    Name Initiative
    Bianka 68
    Soko 50
    Mellory 37
    HGo 30
    Jodri 13

    Round 1

    Soko vs HGo: 11/28: Head: 1+3-4= 0 Damage
    Jodri vs HGo: 02/42: Right Arm: 3+6-4= 5 Damage: 2/7 Wounds
    Jodri vs HGo: 36/42: Body: 2+6-4= 4 Damage: +2 Critical Hit: 24: CV 5: 4 Rounds Stunned, 1 Round only Parry
    Mellory: Load short bow

    Round 2

    Soko vs HGo: 39/28: Miss
    Mellory vs HGo: 98/36: Miss
    Jodri vs HGo: 87/42: Miss
    Jodri vs HGo: 34/42: Body: 3+6-4= 5 Damage: +5 Critical Hit: 65: CV 16: HGo is down

    Kur’s Drink Jodri: 6 Wounds Healed, 7/7 Wounds
    Kur’s Drink Mellory: 5 Wounds Healed, 6/6 Wounds

    Behind a door, the keen sensed Soko, listens to a sharpening noise. He opens the door slowly, and goes first. He heroes enter a room and a dozen of small insects buzz past them. Biting flies are everywhere. A large furred goblin is sharpening his blade, but hasn’t noticed Soko, who sneaks in, and hacks at his head. Startled, the hobgoblin didn’t expect the attack, and Jodri follows through the corridor, hacking at the monster. First he wounds his right arm, but his second strike finds the body. The dwarf’s blow lifts his opponent into the air and then to the ground, stunning him.
    Mellory lets off an arrow, but it misses and clangs at the stone floor. In the chaos of the fray, and the tight quarters, the halfling and the dwarf fail to find an opening, but finally the trollslayer, hits the creature, his blow smashing his opponent’s spine and abdomen, tearing muscle and shattering bone so that it falls to the ground in two separate places.
    Searching the creature, they find an invigorating honey-like potion. Bianka recognizes it for a potion of healing. Kur’s Drink. Jodri and Mellory drink one sip each, and get back to fighting shape as their wounds close.


    G. Empty Room

    Wandering monster check: No monster

    The heroes go through a rough room like a cave, a small pile of dirt is at one corner of the room. The party moves onward.


    H. Broken Room

    Soko: Initiative: 64/50: Failure: Damage 1: 4/5 Wounds
    Mellory: Initiative: 60/37: Failure: Damage 3: 3/6 Wounds
    Jodri: Initiative: 03/23: Success
    Bianka: Initiative: 93/58: Failure: Damage 3: 3/6 Wounds

    As the party goes through this large chamber cut from the stone, they notice the walls and ceiling are cracked, and huge chunks of stone have fallen on the floor. Their vibrations cause some more to fall as they pass through, hitting Soko, Mellory and Bianka.


    I. Narrow Tunnel

    Name Initiative
    Bianka 68
    Soko 50
    Mellory 37
    Jodri 13
    Orc 10

    Round 1

    Soko vs Orc: 44/28: Miss
    Mellory: Load shortbow
    Orc vs Soko: 06/33 (+5): Body: 4+6-2= 8 Damage: +6 Critical Hit: 86: CV 14: Soko is down: Fate Point used
    Jodri: –
    Bianka: –

    Round 2

    Mellory shoots Orc: 54/36: Miss
    Orc vs Mellory: 77/33 (+5): Miss
    Jodri: –
    Bianka: –

    Round 3

    Mellory: draw axe
    Orc vs Mellory: 27/33 (+5): Body: 3+6-3= 6 Damage: +3 Critical Hit: 42: CV 14: Mellory is down: Fate Point used
    Jodri vs Orc: 42/42: Right Arm: 2+6-4= 4 Damage: 3/7 Wounds
    Jodri vs Orc: 01/42: Head: 1+6-4= 3 Damage: 0/7 Wounds
    Bianka: –

    Round 4

    Jodri vs Orc: 63/42: Miss
    Jodri vs Orc: 63/42: Miss
    Orc vs Jodri: 58/33: Miss

    Round 5

    Jodri vs Orc: 18/42: Right Leg: 3+6-4= 5 Damage: +5 Critical Hit: 33: CV 15: Orc is down

    Soko drink Kur’s drink: 5: 5/5 Wounds

    They rush in to avoid the falling rocks, and the heroes find another narrow tunnel. By rush, they go through in a single file, without tactics, the halfling in front, followed by the ranger, the dwarf, and the elf in the rear. Suddenly the door at the end of the hall swings open, and a foul orc, lifts its gleaming black axe and marches towards them.
    Soko is the first to duel with the orc, the orc avoiding the hit easily, and bringing his axe down at the poor halfling, who falls unconscious to the side, saved by fate. The ranger tries to hit the orc with an arrow, but under stress, he fumbles and misses the greenskined monster who marches on, missing his first strike, but follows with a second one, bringing the ranger down.
    Now Jordi, the trollslayer is on one to one combat with the orc. The size of the axes is the same, and the two opponents seem equalled. Jodri delivers two strikes, one at the head and one at the orc’s arm, who fails to hit back successfuly. After another series of carefuly hit where each warrior avoids the other’s hits, finally, Jodri’s axe connects with the orc’s right leg. The blow destroys the orc’s hip joint almost totally – the leg hangs limply, a mass of tattered and puply flesh with protruding fragments of bone. By change, one of the bone splinters has severed a major artery, and after a fraction of a second the orc collapses with blood pouting out from the ruined hip. Death from shock and blood loss is almost instantaneous.
    Bianka pours some of the healing potion into the halfling’s mouth who, recovers, while Mellory, stands in the rear, with his bow ready, too wounded to fight in close combat.
    Jodri recognizes fine dwarven craftsmanship in the two handed axe, and takes it, to honor his ancestors.


    J. The Story Room

    I’m not rolling a wandering monsters check since the next room has a major fight.

    The heroes enter a large chamber that has been polished smooth. Ancient dwarvish runes are carved into the walls. Jodri reads them out aloud. They tell of the story of the digging of the mine and the work that the dwarves did there. Near the end, it mentions that the dwarves found a vein of glowing iron unlike anything they had seen before. They mined this strange ore, which they called eisenmond and found they could make weapons of great magic with it.
    As they mined for more eisenmond they discovered some dark and evil secret about the mountain, without saying anything more than that they packed up and left overnight.
    The story ends by saying that they left behind a large nugget of eisenmond which glowed brighter than the rest, in the care of someone called the Stone King.
    The heroes realize that this is the key to the secret of the mountain, and what Gustovan sent them there to find.


    K. The Iron Mine

    Surprise: Monsters surprised, Heroes not surprised

    Name Initiative
    Bianka 68
    Soko 50
    LGo 40
    Mellory 37
    HGo 30
    Go 20
    Orc 20
    Jodri 13

    Round 0

    Soko charges LGo: 66/28 (+10): Miss
    Bianka charges LGo: 29/41 (+10): Left Leg: 2+3-2-3= 0 Damage
    Mellory: Loads short bow
    Jodri: Moves to engage

    Round 1

    Soko vs LGo: 27/28: Body: 2+3-3= 2 Damage: 3/5
    Bianka vs LGo: 79/41: Miss
    LGo vs Soko: 83/25: Miss
    Mellory shoot Orc: 80/36: Miss
    Go vs Bianka: 16/25: Body: 5+3-3= 5 Damage: +2 Critical Hit: 75: CV 15: Fate Point
    Orc vs Jodri: 93/33: Miss
    HGo vs Jodri: 38/35: Miss
    Jodri vs Orc: 64/47: Miss
    Jodri vs HGo: 47/47: Body: 6(98)+7-4= 9 Damage: +2 Critical Hit: 79: CV 15: Orc is down

    Round 2

    Soko vs LGo: 16/28 (+10): Body: 2+3-3= 2 Damage: 1/5
    LGo vs Soko: 98/25: Miss
    Mellory: Loads short bow
    Go charges Jodri: 22/25 (+10): Right Arm: 1+3-4= 0 Damage
    HGo vs Jodri: 27/35: Body: 2+3-4 = 1 Damage: 6/7 Wounds
    Jodri vs Go: 66/47: Miss
    Jodri vs Go: 57/47: Miss

    Round 3

    Soko vs LGo: 42/28 (+10): Miss
    LGo vs Soko: 77/25: Miss
    Mellory shoots Go: 67/36: Miss
    Go vs Jodri: 39/25: Miss
    HGo vs Jodri: 19/35 (+10): Left Leg: 1+3-4= 0 Damage
    Jodri vs Go: 33/47: Right Arm: 4+7-3= 8 Damage: +1 Critical Hit: 36: CV: 4: Drops weapon, Right arm useless
    Jodri vs HGo: 38/47: Right Leg: 4+7-4= 7 Damage: 0/7 Wounds

    Round 4

    Soko vs LGo: 59/28: Miss
    LGo vs Soko: 53/25: Miss
    Mellory loads short bow
    Go: Cool test: 17/18: Success: Picks up sword with Left Arm
    HGo vs Jodri: 59/35: Miss
    Jodri vs Go: 36/47: Body: 1+7-3= 5 Damage: +5 Critical Hit: 54: CV 15: Go is down
    Jodri vs HGo: 96/47: Miss

    Round 5

    Soko vs LGo: 01/28: Head: 3+3-3= 3 Damage: +2 Critical Hit: 46: CV 9: Can’t act next round, must flee if they can
    LGo: Can’t act
    Mellory shoots HGo: 73/36: Miss
    HGo vs Jodri: 99/35: Miss
    Jodri vs HGo: 56/47: Miss
    Jodri vs HGo: 09/47: Right Leg: 6(07)+3+7-4: +6 Critical Hit: 55: CV 15: HGo is down

    Round 6

    Soko vs LGo: 11/25: Head: 4+3-3: +4 Critical Hit: 02: CV 7
    Mellory loads short bow
    Jodri charges LGo: 68/47 (+10): Miss
    Jodri vs LGo: 06/47: Body: 3+7-3: +6 Critical Hit: 66: CV 16: LGo is down

    The heroes enter a vast chamber that is roughly carved and still being worked. Small veins of iron ore still line the walls. Four monsters work the mine, but the noise of mining covers the party’s footsteps, who gain the element of surprise.
    Soko takes the wall to the right and attacks the smaller goblin along with Bianka, who barely scratches him, as if a magical force prevents them from placing full strength against the creature.
    Mellory stands in the rear, to shoot his arrows, while Jodri the trollslayer enters the middle of the room and lets off a cry to taunt the rest of the monsters to attack him.
    One of the goblins charges at Bianka, and wounded as is she is, he brings her down.
    Soko and the other goblin continue to fight, with the halfling delivering a few cuts and pushing his opponent to the corner of the room.
    Mellory shoots an arrow at the orc but misses, and the orc and the hobgoblin gang up on the slayer. He fends them off, and with a swing of his newfound weapon, he strikes the orc at the belly. The orc’s abdominal cavity ruptures, spilling entrails over a wide area. Death is instantaneous.
    Soko has the advantage over the goblin, keeping him under his sword strikes, while the goblin charges at Jodri to join the hobgoblin against the bloodied slayer. They barely manage to cause a scratch at the furious dwarf.
    Mellory shoots again an arrow and misses, while the dwarf hits the goblin at the weapon arm. The blow strikes the hand, dislocating the wrist, causing the curved blade to drop to the floor, clattering. He then turns around and with a swift slash hits at the hobgoblin’s right leg, but his enemy manages to hold on.
    The goblin keeps their cool, and picks up their sword with the left arm, to keep on fighting, but the trollslayer delivers a hit to their belly, spilling their entrails all over as well.
    Soko has his opponent down, and finally finds an opening, he hits the goblin at the head, destroying the left eye. Half blind the goblin screams in pain, and can’t react to the halfling’s hits.
    Jodri and the hobgoblin exchange more strikes, and the dwarf slayer lands a hit at the hobgoblin’s right leg, destroying the hip joint almost totally, and killing his enemy.
    Soko follows with another strike at the goblin, opening a flesh wound at it’s scalp, and blood flows down into the goblin’s only remaining eye. Only for a moment, until Jodri charges at the goblin, with a blow that smashes the goblin in two pieces.
    Bianka recovers from her hits, and searching through the goblin, she finds a ring, which she immediately identifies as a magical protection ring. She wears it, in a futile effort to keep herself safe in this dungeon.
    Mellory finds a coil of rope, which he takes, in case it ends up being useful in the dungeon.


    L. Tunnel of Death

    Soko: Search: 48/50: success to detect
    Soko: Disarm: 67/34: failure
    Soko: Initiative: 73/50 (+10): Failure: 6+4-3= 7 Damage: +2 Critical Hit: 92: CV 15: Fate Point
    Jodri: Initiative: 16/23 (+10): Success
    Mellory: Initiative: 69/37 (+10): Failure: 5+4-3= 6 Damage: +6 Critical Hit: 61: CV 16: Fate Point
    Bianka: Initiative: 69/58 (+10): Failure: 4+4-4= 4 Damage: +4 Critical Hit: 32: CV 13: Fate Point

    The heroes enter a smooth and straight tunnel. The floor is marked with the dark stains of dried blood. As they reach the door to the other side, Soko to detects a mechanism, that upon opening the door, releases several rocks to their heads. He tries to disarm it but fails. Only Jodri jumps correctly out of the way, as the rocks fall down on them. The rest should have been dead, but escape unscathed, as fate would have it.


    M. Mysterious Fountain

    In the center of the room is a stone fountain, carved in the image of a large dragon that coils around itself and sprays water out of its mouth. The water lands in a polished stone pool that has been cut into the floor around the statue. The air is sweet with the smell of fresh water. The heroes drink from the water to quench their thirst, and in a magical way, all their wounds and fatigue disappear.
    They look around the room and see that there are no more doors, and it appears to be the end of the mine. But knowing that they haven’t found either the Stone Kind or the large lump of eisenmond, they start searching for a secret door.

    Wandering monster check: no wandering monster

    Soko: Search: 70/50: Failure
    Bianka: Search: 82/58: Failure
    Jodri: Search: 68/23: Failure
    Mellory: Search: 33/37: Success

    They find the secret door.


    N. Sloping Passage

    The tunnel has been cut downards at a sharp angle. Walking down is very dangerous, but with the rope, the heroes descend it with great care.


    O. The Eisenmond Mine

    The heroes finally enter a rough stone chamber, with flakes of a mysterious glowing ore flickering in the walls, floor and ceiling, making the dark walls shimmer like a starry night.
    In the center, sitting on a small stone pedestal, is a short statue carved from a single granite block. It depicts a dwarf with a pick and other mining gear, missing it’s head which is tossed in the corner. The head sports a rusty crown, fashioned from iron, The statue’s hands are open and held out as if it was holding something.

    Okay, so here’s a puzzle concerning players and not characters, but it can be resolved with Int checks, which I will test.

    Jodri: Intelligence: 02/54: Success: He finds a secret compartment with two nuggets of eisenmond, that fit perfectly on the eye sockets of the statue’s head.

    Jodri: Intelligence: 98/54: Failure
    Bianka: Intelligence: 55/46: Failure
    Soko: Intelligence: 94/26: Failure
    Mellory: Intelligence: 96/27: Failure

    2nd attempt:

    Jodri: Intelligence: 37/54: Success: He considers placing the head back on the statue.

    Searching around for secret doors, Jodri finds a small compartment in the pedestal that contains two nuggets of eisenmond. His keen senses tell him that they fit perfectly to the head, and he proceeds to place them there.
    The party looks at the head. Then after thinking the problem, for a while, Jodri decides to re-assemble the statue.
    As soon as the statue is assembled, a strange light fills the room. The stone body of the statue glows and the mouth moves slowly. In a voice deep and old as the mountain around, the statue speaks.
    It says about how the mine belongs to the dwarves, and how good it is that the heroes have arrived because a great evil has tainted the spirit of the place. The priceless magical stone called the Eisenkern was stolen, and along with it, the power to trap the beast that lives at the heart of the mountain. If the Eisenkern is not returned, that terrible beast will be freed, and a horrible evil will come upon all who dwell in these lands.


    Ending the Adventure

    The heroes return and report their story to Gustovan, who seems troubled by it. He rewards them and takes thought of the matter.


    The System

    Rough, deadly, ~~gritty~~ gory. On purpose I left the descriptions of the critical hits, as documented in the core rulebook, so that the reader can decide for themselves.
    The game system isn’t polished at all. Rules leave a lot to be desired in terms of descriptions and examples, but it works. In writing this I am also aware of the age of the system.
    Overall it feels like there’s not much balancing done and failing at tasks is more often than not, the norm.
    But what it shines about is that it’s enjoyable. To hit chance is low in combat, but it takes only a couple hits to bring someone down. Combat mechanics are simple, and even though they suffer from the Naked Dwarf syndrome, they make more sense than their respective D&D rules counterparts.
    Political correctness or taking care to not step on any other Intellectual property, is out of the window, but at the same this is a game that doesn’t take itself seriously, unlike how the franchise evolved later on.
    It is d100, but not nearly as crunchy as the other games of the same family. It is fast and deadly, but it can easily suffer from series of failed results and “nothing happens” combat rounds.

    What about the Dungeon Crawl?

    With a fair bit of luck and almost complete expenditure of the party’s Fate Points, we cleared the dungeon (a group of 4 versus 3 in my other runs). To be honest, a normal group would have better turned tail and run after the fight with the orc with the magical axe, but I wanted to see how it would go on no matter what.
    I did some wrong calls, and missed a few rules here and there, but nothing too serious.
    With proper planning, I believe a party can do some dungeon crawling in WHFRP1E and enjoy it. It’s risky, but manageable.

    Summary

    From a solo perspective, the system is perfectly soloable regarding bookkeeping and rules. It’s age shows though, and it can take a while to find where a rule is described even with the OCR PDF version.
    I’d certainly use WHFRP1e to play an adventure or two in the same setting, but I wouldn’t use it to run something else.
    It’s a game that certainly lives to its dark and gritty name.

     
  • giorgis 2:10 pm on September 24, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Solo   

    A Call to Glory S02 – Mythras 

    Continuing at the same challenge in the Level 1 dungeon A Call to Glory from TSR’s Dragon Quest, introductory adventure game, this time using Mythras.
    Mythras was Runequest 6, a setting-agnostic version (non Glorantha) of the Runequest RPG systems series. Mainly aimed at Bronze Age/Sword and Sandal settings, it can run pretty much everything as it is a generic system.
    Unfortunately I don’t have Classic Fantasy supplement, which brings an OD&D feel to the table, that would be a perfect fit for this adventure, but I do have Mythras Companion that I will be using for it’s Tactical Combat section to run the turn & grid based combat.

    I’ll be using a diverse party of 3 characters. I’ll try to include as many different demihuman races and careers as possible to have a party that can deal with most tasks.

    I’ll be rolling normally for my characters, but if someone comes up too weak, I’ll reroll from the start. Since I don’t want to waste too much time on character backgrounds and such, I will be using the pyramid skill allocation method from Mythras Companion, to get faster chargen. Also I’ll be quite free when choosing magic spells and combat styles, as I don’t want to spend time in world design.

    For the enemies, I’ll be using Mythras Encounter Generator so if something comes up as too unbalanced, it might have to do with the author’s intent.


    The Party

    I went ahead and uploaded them to Roll20.

    • Khari, a Dwarf Warrior
    • Malgali, an Elf Sorcerer
    • Eanfric, a Human Ranger

    The Adventure

    The heroes have been called before Gustovan, the Burgomaster of Torlynn. Torlynn is a small village set in a quiet, hilly area near the mountains. The heroes have lived here for many years and think of Torlynn as home. Gustovan is known as a wise and kind mayor.
    He asks of the heroes to go explore the old, abandoned, dwarven, iron mine, because strange lights and sounds come from within. They’re to find out if there is something wrong there or if the reports are false.

    The heroes enter the dungeon. It’s entrance is a rough cavern, cut from the stone long ago by dwarves. They check their weapons and start down into the mine, with the wind blowing in their backs.

    Note: again I have to warn the reader that there are huge mechanics text blocks. Mythras combat is very detailed, so I'm giving the reader an opportunity to read this as an example, or just skip it and jump to the narrative sections.

    Some Notes on the Combat System: In Mythras each combatant has an Action Points (AP) pool, reset at the start of each Round, that they can spend to perform Proactive (e.g. Attacking) or Reactive (e.g. Parrying) Actions. Once these are spent, the combatant is at the mercy of the opponent who can attempt to attack unopposed (if they have any remaining APs). In general this is supposed to resolve both the multiple opponents and the multiple attacks mechanisms often found in RPGs. Because having more than 2 APs (the average) can be unbalancing, there’s an optional rule (that I won’t be using) to make APs fixed to 2 for everyone. Each combat Round is divided in Cycles, where each combatant takes Turns, spending their APs, until none remains. I’ll be writing the APs in (parentheses) next to each combatant name prior to them spending one).
    Combat resolution is similar to Hârnmaster, with opposed Differential Rolls (compare the Success Levels-SL of each combatant) with some differences. The major differences are the Special Effects-SE (for each SL difference, the combatant gains a Special Effect that they can use) and Hit Locations with their own Hit Points. There’s tons more rules for combat and I hope that I can work them all in the game slowly as I learn, playing both sides.
    Also according to Tactical Combat rules, it’s Action first, Move later, which has a very specific aspect in combat.


    A. Tunnel

    Wandering monster check: None

    The wind fades away as the heroes move into the mine. A long tunnel leads onward, to the next room.


    B. The First Lair

    Name Initiative
    Eanfric 17
    Malgali 17
    Khari 18
    Goblin 10
    Kobold 14

    Round 1 Cycle 1

    Khari (3) Moves closer to Kobold
    Malgali (2) Prepares to Cast Magic (Wrack)
    Eanfric (3) Loads his Shortbow
    Kobold (2) Moves to Khari to Engage
    Goblin (2) Moves to Eanfric to Engage

    Round 1 Cycle 2

    Khari (2) attacks Kobold: 68: Success: Kobold (1) Parries: 27: Success: Attack Parried
    Malgali (1) Casts Wrack on Kobold: (Intensity 8, Range 1): 16: Success: Hit: Left Arm: Damage: 2: HP: 1/3: Minor Wound (no effect)
    Eanfric (2) Shoots his Shortbow to Goblin: 87: Failure
    Kobold (0) Takes no action
    Goblin (1) attacks Eanfric: 5: Success: Eanfric (1): Parries: 25: Success: Attack Parried

    Round 1 Cycle 3

    Khari (1) attacks Kobold: 27: Success: SE: Maximize Damage: Hit: Right Leg: Damage: 9: HP: -4: Major Wound: Kobold is down

    Round 2 Cycle 1

    Eanfric (3) Readies Sword & Dagger
    Malgali (2) Prepares to Cast Magic (Wrack)
    Khari (3) Moves to flank Goblin
    Goblin (2) attacks Eanfric: 76: Failure

    Round 2 Cycle 2

    Khari (2) Delay
    Eanfric (2) attacks Goblin: 82: Failure
    Malgali (1) Casts Wrack on Goblin: (Intensity 8, Range 1): 18: Success: Hit: Chest: Damage: 6: HP: 0: Serious Wound: Endurance: 6: Success
    Khari (2) attacks Goblin: 7: Critical Success: Goblin (1) Parries: 92: Failure: SE: Maximize Damage & Choose Location (Chest): Damage: 9: HP: -8: Major Wound: Goblin is down

    As the heroes enter the room, they notice a couple of beds. Probably used to be the miners’, but now they have new occupants. A kobold and a goblin get up, pick their weapons and attack.
    Eanfric pulls his bowstring while aiming an arrow at the goblin that closes in on him, his shot misses and the goblin hacks at him, but he uses his bow to parry the attack.
    Khari brings his battleaxe towards the kobold, only to be blocked by the monster’s club, while Malgali, unopposed speaks some words in an unknown language, and tendrils of dark energy flash towards the kobold’s left arm, bruising him. Khari follows up on his previous attack, this time unopposed as the kobold isn’t fast enough to stop him. His battle axe strikes with such strength that the kobold’s right leg is hacked off. Blood speweing everywhere, the monster is down, soon to be dead.
    Eanfric drops his bow and draws his sword and dagger. Hoping to get a hit on the ranger while he’s still distracted, the goblin attempts to attack, but misses. Eanfric’s attack with the sword fails as well.
    Malgali starts chanting again in unknown words, as Khari closes in at the goblin. Malgali’s spell hits the goblin right on the chest. The creature screams in pain as black tendrils bounce along his body. Khari gets the opening he needed and in spite of his opponent’s futile attempt to fight him off, he aims and hacks his opponent’s ribcage. The goblin is dead in a gory display.
    The heroes search the room and find a long sword and a belt among the rubble.

    Okay a side note here. You’re supposed to draw randomly two equipment cards from the dragon quest equipment deck. This is my second play, and I drew exactly the same two cards as in the first play. Weird odds, just wanted to share.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    Wandering monster: None

    Nothing of interest in this narrow cut cavern in the stone. Only the occasional splashing of water driping from the ceiling.


    D. Orc Lair

    Name Initiative
    Eanfric 22
    Malgali 19
    Khari 11
    Orc 15

    Round 1 Cycle 1

    Eanfric (3) attacks Orc: 62: Success: Orc (2) parries: 62: Failure: SE: Flurry: Hit: Chest: Damage: 0: –
    Flurry Eanfric (2) attacks Orc: 3: Critical Success: Orc (1) parries: 41: Success: SE: Bleed: Hit: Chest: Damage: 0: –
    Malgali (2) Prepares to Cast Magic (Bypass armor)
    Orc (0): No action
    Khari (3): attacks Orc: 2: Critical Success: SE: Maximize Damage & Sunder: Hit: Left Arm: Damage: 9: HP: -4: Serious Wound

    Round 1 Cycle 2

    Eanfric (1) attacks Orc: 89: Failure
    Malgali (1) Casts Bypass armor on Khari: 3: Critical Success
    Khari (2) attacks Orc: 14: Success: SE: Bleed: Hit: Left Leg: Damage: 9: HP: -3: Serious Wound: Endurance: 19: Fail: Prone

    Round 1 Cycle 3

    Khari (1) attacks Orc: 47: Success: SE: Choose Location (Left Leg): Hit: Left Leg: Damage: 7: HP: -10: Major Wound: Orc is down

    As soon as the heroes enter this small room, the stench of rotten meat fills their nostrils. With their infravision they make out an orc figure as they close in to engage.
    Eanfric steps forward and with a flurry of strikes, sword and dagger, he tries to harm the creature, which parries both his attacks. Khari brings his axe to the left arm of his occupied opponent, seriously wounding it. Eanfric tries again to find an oppening, but he can’t.
    Malgali casts another spell and this time the magical energies weave themselves around the edge of Khari’s battle axe. Khari attacks again the orc, hacking his left leg, causing severe bleeding to the orc as it falls prone. He follows up with a finishing strike to the leg of his downed opponent, severing it completely, as the creature screams in pain and dies out.
    The dwarf notices a loose stone slab on the floor. Pushing it aside he finds a bag of gold, probably spoils belonging to the defeated orc.


    E. Trapped Room

    Khari: Evade: 19: Success

    A small empty room, with a funny smell. Black ash and soot cover the floors and walls. A steel door with an iron handle sits in the middle of the floor.
    As the dwarf tries to open the door he hears a clicking noise. He’s fast enough to avoid a jet of greek fire, that lets of to his head. Thanking his quick reflexes he opens the trapdoor, but it was just a trap as behind it is only rock.


    F. Gnoll Lair

    Name Initiative
    Eanfric 13
    Malgali 18
    Khari 14
    Gnoll 14

    Round 1 Cycle 1

    Malgali (2) Prepares to Cast Magic (Damage Resistance)
    Khari (3) attacks Gnoll: 79: Success: Gnoll (2) parries: 64: Failure: SE: Bleed: Hit: Right Leg: Damage: 3(3): HP: 4: Minor Wound
    Gnoll (1) attacks Khari: 60: Success: Khari (2) parries: 93: Failure: SE: Bleed: Hit: Head: Damage: 5(0): No damage
    Eanfric (3) attacks Gnoll: 8: Critical Success: SE: Impale & Maximize Damage: Hit: Head: Damage: 8(6): HP: 1: Minor Wound

    Round 1 Cycle 2

    Malgali (1) casts Damage Resistance on shelf
    Eanfric (2) tries to pull impaled weapon free: 66: Failure
    Khari (1) attacks Gnoll: 85: Failure

    Round 1 Cycle 3

    Eanfric (1) tries to pull impaled weapon free: 68: Failure

    Round 2 Cycle 1

    Malgali (2) Dither
    Khari (3) attacks Gnoll: 64: Success: Gnoll (2) parries: 67: Failure: SE: Choose location (Head): Damage: 5(5): HP: -4: Endurance: 5: Critical Success
    Gnoll (1) attacks Eanfric: 13: Success: Eanfric (3) parries: 44: Success: attack parried
    Eanfric (2) tries to pull impaled weapon free: 98: Failure

    Round 2 Cycle 2

    Malgali (1) Dither
    Khari (1) attacks Gnoll: 45: Success: SE: Choose location (Head): Damage: 8(8): HP: -12: Major wound: Gnoll is down

    The heroes enter a room and a dozen of small insects buzz past them. Biting flies are everywhere. A large furred gnoll is sharpening his Mangar, and as he sees them attacks.
    Malgali starts chanting his magic, in the rear, as Khari enters the fray and strikes the gnoll past his defense, scratching his right leg. The gnoll strikes back, hitting Khari at the head, but the helmet protects him. As the two of them are locked in combat, Eanfric thrusts his sword blade into the head of his opponent, and impales it into the side of his skull. The towering creature is still fighting.
    Malgali casts his protective magic, and a vague aura of darkness surrounds him.
    Eanfric tries to pull out the blade from this enemy, but it’s stuck, and he fails again and again.
    Khari takes a wild swing that misses, but follows up with a hit to his opponents head, as it is an easy target while being locked with Eanfric’s blade. The gnoll whimpers and curses in his language, but withstands the hit. It tries to harm Eanfric, to get him to let go, but he’s too restricted and in pain to be able to do it.
    Eanfric still can’t pull out his sword, as Khari puts the creature out of its misery with a decapitating hit on the neck. The gnoll’s head would have flied away if it weren’t still skewered by Eanfric’s blade.
    Putting his foot to the head, Eanfric finally frees up the sword.
    Searching the creature, they find an invigorating honey-like potion. Malgali recognizes it for a potion of healing. Kur’s Drink. They decide to keep it in case they need it later.


    G. Empty Room

    Wandering Monster Check: No monster

    I decide no to search the pile of dirt in the room.

    The heroes go through a rough room like a cave, a small pile of dirt is at one corner of the room. The party moves onward.


    H. Broken Room

    Khari evade: 11: Success
    Eanfric evade: 39: Success
    Malgali evade: 8: Success

    As the party goes through this large chamber cut from the stone, they notice the walls and ceiling are cracked, and huge chunks of stone have fallen on the floor. Their vibrations cause some more to fall as they pass through, but they avoid it without harm.


    I. Narrow Tunnel

    Name Initiative
    Eanfric 21
    Malgali 14
    Khari 11
    Orc 7

    Round 1 Cycle 1

    Eanfric (3) readies short bow
    Malgali (2) Prepares to Cast Magic (Wrack)
    Khari (3) delay & move
    Orc (2) attacks khari: 21: Success: Khari (3) parries: 24: Success: attack parried

    Round 1 Cycle 2

    Eanfric (2) readies short bow
    Malgali (1) Casts Magic (Wrack): Hit Location: Right Leg: Damage: 7: HP: -1: Serious wound: Endurance: 91: Failure: Orc Prone
    Khari (2) attacks Orc: 14: Success: Orc (1) parries: 77: Failure: SE: Bleed: Left Arm: Damage: 9: HP: -4: Serious Wound: Endurance: 40: Success: Left arm useless

    Round 1 Cycle 3

    Eanfric (1) shoots Orc: 15: Formidable Success: SE: Impale: Right Leg: Damage: 4(1): HP: -2
    Khari (2) attacks prone Orc: 1: Critical Success: SE: Maximize Damage & Bleed: Endurance: 73: Failure: Bleeds: Left Arm: Damage: 10: HP: -14: Major wound: Orc is down

    The heroes find another narrow tunnel. They go through in a single file, the dwarf in front, the elf in the middle, and the thief in the rear. Suddenly the door at the end of the hall swings open, and a foul orc, lifts its gleaming black axe and marches towards them.
    The heroes in single file, Khari in front, followed by Eanfric who readies his bow with an arrow, and Malgali who starts chanting a wracking spell. The orc and Khari meet, and the dwarf parries his enemy’s blow. The dark magic flies away from Malgali’s hands, and hit the orc in the right leg. The supernatural wound and pain is such, that the monster drops prone to the floor. Khari finds the opportunity to strike, and hits it’s left arm, wounding it severly.
    Eanfric finds the opening, and in spite of the fray, his arrow is impaled into the same leg. The orc screams in pain, but not for long. Khari follows up with another axe strike at his downed opponent, hacking off his left arm. The orc passes out due to shock, only to bleed out a while later.
    Khari takes the black axe of his opponent. The craftsmanship isn’t orcish, and he intends to put it to good use.


    J. The Story Room

    I’m not rolling a wandering monsters check since the next room has a major fight.

    The heroes enter a large chamber that has been polished smooth. Ancient dwarvish runes are carved into the walls. Khari reads them out aloud. They tell of the story of the digging of the mine and the work that the dwarves did there. Near the end, it mentions that the dwarves found a vein of glowing iron unlike anything they had seen before. They mined this strange ore, which they called eisenmond and found they could make weapons of great magic with it.
    As they mined for more eisenmond they discovered some dark and evil secret about the mountain, without saying anything more than that they packed up and left overnight.
    The story ends by saying that they left behind a large nugget of eisenmond which glowed brighter than the rest, in the care of someone called the Stone King.
    The heroes realize that this is the key to the secret of the mountain, and what Gustovan sent them there to find.


    K. The Iron Mine

    Name Initiative
    Eanfric 22
    Malgali 19
    Khari 19
    Goblin 9
    Gnoll 8
    Kobold 18
    Orc 14

    Round 1 Cycle 1

    Eanfric (3) Ready Sword & Dagger
    Malgali (2) Prepare Magic (Dullblade-Orc)
    Khari (3) Charge Gnoll: 79: Hard Failure
    Kobold (2) move to Khari
    Orc (2) move to Malgali
    Goblin (2) move to Eanfric
    Gnoll (2) attack Khari: 61: Success: Khari (2): Parry: 42: Success: Attack parried

    Round 1 Cycle 2

    Eanfric (2) attacks Goblin: 40: Success: Goblin (1) parries: 56: Failure: SE: Bleed: Hit Location: Right Arm: Damage: 1: HP: 2: Minor Wound: Endurance: 30: Failure, bleeds
    Malgali (1): Casts Magic (Dullblade-Orc): 21: Success
    Khari (1) wards location, attacks gnoll: 53: Success: Gnoll (1) parries: 23: Success: Attack parried
    Kobold (1) attacks Khari: 31: Success: SE: Choose location (Head): Damage 1(0): No damage
    Orc (1) attacks Malgali: 67: Failure

    Round 1 Cycle 3

    Eanfric (1) attacks Goblin: 31: Success: SE: Bleed: Hit Location: Right Leg: Damage: 8: HP: -4: Major Wound: Goblin is down

    Round 2 Cycle 1

    Eanfric (3) moves to Kobold
    Malgali (2) attacks Orc: 80: Failure
    Khari (3) attacks Gnoll: 80: Success: Gnoll (2) parries: 22: Success
    Kobold (2) attacks Khari: Khari doesn’t parry: Success: SE: Choose Location (Head): Damage: 2(0): No Damage
    Orc (2) attacks Malgali: 3: Critical Success: Malgali (1) parries: 68: Failure: Choose Location & Maximize Damage: Damage: 7(0): No Damage (Damage Resistance)
    Gnoll (1) attacks Khari: 3: Critical Success: Khari (2) parries: 83: Success: SE: Bypass armor: Hit Location: Right Leg: Damage: 6: HP: -1: Serious Wound: Endurance: 39: Falls Prone

    Round 2 Cycle 2

    Eanfric (2) attacks Kobold: 97: Failure
    Khari (1) attacks Gnoll: 39: Hard Success: SE: Choose Location (Head): Damage: 9(7): HP: 0: Serious Wound: Endurance: 78: Failure: Gnoll is down
    Kobold (1) attacks Khari: 24: Success: SE: Choose Location (Head): Damage: 4(2): HP: 3: Minor Wound
    Orc (1) attacks Malgali: 89: Failure

    Round 2 Cycle 3

    Eanfric (1) attacks Kobold: 78: Failure

    Round 3 Cycle 1

    Eanfric (3) attacks Kobold: 15: Success: Kobold (2) Parries: 42: Failure: SE: Flurry: Hit Location: Abdomen: Damage: 6: HP: -1: Serious Wound: Endurance: 29: Failure: Kobold is down
    Malgali (2) Delay
    Khari (3) readies crossbow
    Orc (2) attacks Malgali: 1: Critical Success: SE: Maximize Damage & Bypass armor: Hit Location: Left Arm: Damage: 10: HP -6: Major Wound: Luck Point Spend: Serious Wound: HP: -3

    Round 3 Cycle 2

    Eanfric (2) Moves to Orc
    Malgali (1) Delay
    Khari (2) loads crossbow
    Orc (1) attacks Eanfric: 10: Success: Eanfric (1) parries: Success: Attack parried

    Round 3 Cycle 3

    Khari (1) loads crossbow

    Round 4 Cycle 1

    Eanfric (3) attacks Orc: 70: Success: Orc (2) Parries: 94: Failure: SE: Flurry: Hit Location: Head: :Damage: 8(0): No Damage
    Flurry: Eanfric (2) attacks Orc: 70: Success: Orc (1) Parries: 46: Success: Attack Parried
    Malgali (2) attacks Orc: 81: Failure
    Khari (2) shoots crossbow: 76: Hard Failure: Hits Eanfric: Hit Location: Chest: Damage: 7(5): HP: 1: Minor Wound

    Round 4 Cycle 2

    Eanfric (1) attacks Orc: 4: Critical Success: SE: Bypass Armor & Maximize Damage: Hit Location: Right Leg: Damage: 8(8): HP: -2: Endurace: 74: Failure: Orc is prone
    Malgali (1) attacks Orc: 20: Success: SE: Choose Location: Right Leg: Damage: 7(4): HP: -6: Major Wound: Orc is down

    Khari: Kurs Drink: 2d4: 3: Head completely healed, Leg, minor wound
    Malgali: Kurs Drink: 2d4: 6: Left arm: minor wound
    Eanfric: Kurs Drink: 2d4: 4: Chest: minor wound

    The heroes enter a vast chamber that is roughly carved and still being worked. Small veins of iron ore still line the walls. Four monsters work the mine, and as they see the party they howl and attack.
    Considering the close quarters, Eanfric drops his bow and draws his sword and dagger, while Malgali aims at the orc and prepares to cast some spell. Khari charges, and tries to hit a gnoll, letting off a war cry, but the momentum is too high, and not having calculated the steps correctly, he misses.
    The kobold, orc and goblin each close up to the dwarf, elf and the human respectively, while the gnoll attacks the charging dwarf, his attempt parried.
    Eanfric, the ranger slashes at the goblin, who fails to stop his attack. The strike finds the goblin’s right arm, which starts bleeding profusely.
    Malgali’s spell goes off and the orc’s axehead edge becomes duller than normal, this doesn’t stop the orc from attacking the sorcerer, but the elf avoids the hit.
    Khari, against two foes, locks his shield in place to ward his left side, and attacks the gnoll, who parries his attack. The kobold strikes the dwarf, aiming high, above the shield, and hits the dwarf’s head. But doesn’t do any harm.
    Eanfric slashes at the goblin again, hits the leg, and the broadsword hacks off the entire limb. Bleeding out, the goblin falls. Having no opponent, Eanfric moves in to assist the dwarf who is against double odds.
    The elf tries to hit the orc with his stuff, and fails. The orc, laughs and attacks the sorcerer, but the dark protective aura, block the strike, and the orc startled, causes no harm.
    Khari keeps on fighting against the kobold and the gnoll. His attack against the hyena-man is blocked and the kobold delivers another weak hit to his head. This is enough to get him off his guard, the gnoll attacks him once more with a swift blow. He parries, but his enemy has found the opening he needs, and strikes his leg, in an unarmored joint. The wound is serious, and the dwarf cries out and falls prone.
    The ranger frantically tries to help his downed friend, by taking the attention away, and attacks the kobold, but doesn’t score a hit.
    The dwarf doesn’t seem to need any help. From his prone state, he lashes out with all his strength, and delivers his black axe to the gnoll’s head. The hit is so strong, that the gnoll, falls down, unconcsious.
    The kobold hits again the dwarf, this time, the club, manages to bruise his thick skull a little. Fazed the ranger misses again the little humanoid.
    The orc swings his axe again at the sorcerer, but Malgali evades the attack.
    Now Eanfric has the kobold’s attention, he thrusts his sword, but the little creature can’t avoid it. He hits it right in the belly, and it drops in pain with a serious wound.
    Khari, with his leg wounded, can’t move to help Malgali. Instead he pulls out his crossbow strapped in his back, and begins to load it with a bolt.
    The orc attacks the elf, and this time he notices the dark protective aura and avoids it. His axe, hacks at the elf’s left arm, and only by sheer luck, it’s not completely cut off. The elf screams for help, and the ranger is quick to oblige. He attacks the orc, who parries his blow.
    He attacks again, and this time he hits the tough steel helmet on the orc’s head. He follows up with another strike from his dagger, but the orc is quick to intercept it. Malgali tries to hit the orc with his staff from the flank, but the whole chaos in melee, makes him dither and he fails to land a hit.
    Khari has finally cocked his crossbow, and he shoot. Alas he misses, and as the three combatants are in melee, he hits Eanfric right in the chest. Thankfully the padded armor reduced some of the impact, and Eanfric can keep fighting. He attacks again, the orc unable to defend so quickly, and finds an unarmored spot on his right leg, mangling it. His leg useless, the orc falls to the floor.
    His opponent down, Malgali brings his staff with full strength on the same wounded leg, and the orc passes out in pain.
    They each take a turn of drinking a sip from the healing potion, and soon they’re back in proper fighting shape. Malgali can use his arm again and Khari can walk. Unfortunately the potion is now empty.
    Searching through their opponents belongings, they find a cool silver ring, and a coil of rope. The ranger takes them both.


    L. Tunnel of Death

    Khari: Perception: 90: Failure
    Khari: Evade: 3: Critical Success
    Malgali: Evade: 62: Failure
    Eanfric: Evade: 29: Success
    Trap: 20: Success: Hit Location: Chest: Damage: 7(5): HP: 2: Minor Wound

    The heroes enter a smooth and straight tunnel. The floor is marked with the dark stains of dried blood. As they reach the door to the other side, Khari fails to detect a mechanism, that upon opening the door, releases several rocks to their heads. The dwarf and the human avoid them, but the elf is hit on the shoulders, and is bruised.


    M. Mysterious Fountain

    In the center of the room is a stone fountain, carved in the image of a large dragon that coils around itself and sprays water out of its mouth. The water lands in a polished stone pool that has been cut into the floor around the statue. The air is sweet with the smell of fresh water. The heroes drink from the water to quench their thirst, and in a magical way, all their wounds and fatigue disappear.
    They look around the room and see that there are no more doors, and it appears to be the end of the mine. But knowing that they haven’t found either the Stone Kind or the large lump of eisenmond, they start searching for a secret door.

    Wandering Monster check: No monster

    Khari: Perception: 62: Failure
    Malgali: Perception: 21: Success

    They find the secret door.


    N. Sloping Passage

    The tunnel has been cut downards at a sharp angle. Walking down is very dangerous, but with the rope, the heroes descend it with great care.


    O. The Eisenmond Mine

    The heroes finally enter a rough stone chamber, with flakes of a mysterious glowing ore flickering in the walls, floor and ceiling, making the dark walls shimmer like a starry night.
    In the center, sitting on a small stone pedestal, is a short statue carved from a single granite block. It depicts a dwarf with a pick and other mining gear, missing it’s head which is tossed in the corner. The head sports a rusty crown, fashioned from iron, The statue’s hands are open and held out as if it was holding something.

    Okay, so here’s a puzzle concerning players and not characters, but it can be resolved with Int checks, which I will test.

    Khari: Insight: 63: Failure
    Eanfric: Insight: 21: Success: He finds a secret compartment with two nuggets of eisenmond, that fit perfectly on the eye sockets of the statue’s head.
    Malgali: Insight: 76: Failure

    Khari: Insight: 82: Failure: Luck Point: 68: Failure
    Eanfric: Insight: 28: Failure: Luck Point: 44: Failure
    Malgali: Insight: 77: Failure: Luck Point: 4: Critical Success: He considers placing the head back on the statue.

    Searching around for secret doors, Eanfric finds a small compartment in the pedestal that contains two nuggets of eisenmond. His keen senses tell him that they fit perfectly to the head, and he proceeds to place them there.
    The party looks at the head. Then Malgali decides to re-assemble the statue.
    As soon as the statue is assembled, a strange light fills the room. The stone body of the statue glows and the mouth moves slowly. In a voice deep and old as the mountain around, the statue speaks.
    It says about how the mine belongs to the dwarves, and how good it is that the heroes have arrived because a great evil has tainted the spirit of the place. The priceless magical stone called the Eisenkern was stolen, and along with it, the power to trap the beast that lives at the heart of the mountain. If the Eisenkern is not returned, that terrible beast will be freed, and a horrible evil will come upon all who dwell in these lands.


    Ending the Adventure

    The heroes return and report their story to Gustovan, who seems troubled by it. He rewards them and takes thought of the matter.


    The System

    When I played Hârnmaster last session, I made a false statement. That Mythras was less detailed. That was incorrect. Mythras is the most detailed tactical rpg combat system I’ve played.
    It includes mechanics to cover almost any possibility, and takes all the factors into account.
    There are even more layers to detail in combat which I could not bring myself to monitor and since they were optional I decided not to use, namely the Weapon Reach rules, which are very interesting, but I don’t think it would be possible for me to run in solo party combat.
    To manage to run everything I used Roll20, and even so there were times I did mistakes and had to double back to a previous point. I’m certain I made mistakes that I still am not aware of. One major mistake I did was regarding opposed non-differential rolls, where I was under the impression (as is in Hârnmaster) that the lower successful number wins at ties, but in Mythras the opposite is true (which also makes more sense).

    Some major points regarding the system:
    The Action Points, Round and Cycles mechanic is brilliant. That was very hard for me to bookkeep as a solo player, but I imagine that in group play, that won’t be an issue, especially with the use of tokens and such. I really liked how you have to consider if you’re gonna parry, ward location, delay or anything similar, and how it will affect the flow of the entire battle. For example when the fast ranger, Eanfric, who also had a high initiative, managed to score a hit, his flurry trait really helped to do a follow up attack, forcing his enemy to spend his entire action points pool at the start of the round, and rendering him defenseless to follow up attacks from other party members during the round.
    The deadliness of the combat is even higher than in Hârnmaster. If the attacker chooses their special effects carefully, they can overcome any possible defense. I loved how when the orc realized the magical armor of the sorcerer, he could bypass it. Going through the possible special effects was time consuming as a solo player, and it can also be unbalancing (though I did not have that issue), but it’s the most profound trait of Mythras, and one it does best.
    Finally the hit locations with hit points. This all can be very hard to keep track of as solo. It’s great, because you get to try to protect your own wounded parts, and aim for the enemy’s wounded parts as well, to end combat faster, but I was finding hard to do even with Roll20.
    I found the pyramid skill build option very fast compared to previous chargens I had made where I was slowly choosing skills. Also it helped a lot in fleshing out the characters I had in mind.
    Magic is absolutely great. There are Five types of magic in the core rules, and despite not having a High magic equivalent (which is in Classic Fantasy I presume, but in core rules I had to use Sorcery), I really enjoyed it. Just when I was afraid Sorcery is overpowered, with the Damage Resistance spell, I read that Bypass Armor special effects works on magical protection as well. That was great!

    Overall I loved Mythras, but unfortunately it’s on the really hard part to do solo. I doubt it would be possible to maintain a solo adventure with multiple party combats, before it becomes tiring. It can be done, but it’s not the best solution. Mythras is aimed to group play where the tactical options are played out like mixing chess with RPGs.

    What about the Dungeon Crawl?

    The Luck Point meta economy and magical healing options, help the party recover quickly. Also some good tactical options, can help the heroes defeat waves of foes in the closed quarters that is a dungeon.
    Ganging up and flanking oppoents is very strong, so the tactical positioning is even more important than in other game systems. Combat with multiple opponents does not entail a bonus or penalty to attack rolls, but instead, the accumulated Actions, can expend the outnumbered combatant’s Action Points quickly, and leave him unable to respond to all the attacks. I found that whenever my heroes had the numbers advantage, the battle ended very quickly, whereas in the last battle which was one to one, it came close to a dangerous end.
    Mythras lends itself nicely to dungeon crawling, and I’m curious to try out Classic Fantasy in the future, in another attempt to solo it.

    Summary

    Mythras remains on my list of favorite RPGs, but it’s very hard to solo, due to the immense amount of details included. There are several parts of it that can fit well with Hârnmaster, and I could see myself mixing the two systems in the future.
    Combat felt fast, and there were very few occasions where nothing happened, which is important to me, as it keeps things interesting.
    Due to the strong and mind taxing amount of details, bookkeeping and rules, I decided to abandon any RPGfication of the adventure, and focused on the tactical board game elements instead.

     
    • giannidowns 4:35 pm on September 24, 2021 Permalink | Reply

      Fantastic read, and really sells the Mythras system. I am thoroughly enjoying your research into the games, styles, solo mechanics, and play tests.

      Liked by 1 person

  • giorgis 10:22 am on September 13, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Solo   

    A Call to Glory S01 – Hârnmaster 

    Okay so for my next challenge, I will go at a more solo boardgaming approach than solo roleplaying.
    I will choose the Level 1 dungeon A Call to Glory from TSR’s Dragon Quest, introductory adventure game and play it with a series of different RPG systems.
    I will not be converting much, rather I will be freely translating to the nearest acceptable option. For example, if there aren’t kobolds in the RPG system under test, then I’ll choose another monster rather than try to create kobolds.
    I won’t be warping the adventure at all, rather I’ll be using it as is.

    I’ll be using a diverse party of 3 characters. I’ll try to include as many different demihuman races and professions as possible to have a party that can deal with most tasks.
    If I can find pregens that can fit a slot in the party, I’ll use them.

    So for the first attempt I will be using Hârnmaster 3ed. I expect combat to be deadly and slow. I’m eager to see how it will turn out.


    The Party

    I’ll be using pregens from https://www.lythia.com/game_aides/friends-foes-followers-volume-1/

    • Eitri Terrika, a Khuzdul Clansman
    • Melas Renier, a Sindarin Ranger
    • Rybryn of Dara (aka Shadow), an Unguilded Thief

    The Adventure

    The heroes have been called before Gustovan, the Burgomaster of Torlynn. Torlynn is a small village set in a quiet, hilly area near the mountains. The heroes have lived here for many years and think of Torlynn as home. Gustovan is known as a wise and kind mayor.
    He asks of the heroes to go explore the old, abandoned, dwarven, iron mine, because strange lights and sounds come from within. They’re to find out if there is something wrong there or if the reports are false.

    The heroes enter the dungeon. It’s entrance is a rough cavern, cut from the stone long ago by dwarves. They check their weapons and start down into the mine, with the wind blowing in their backs.

    Note: again I have to warn the reader that there are huge mechanics text blocks. Hârnmaster combat is very detailed, so I'm giving the reader an opportunity to read this as an example, or just skip it and jump to the narrative sections.

    Some abbreviations:
    CS/CF/MS/MF: Marginal/Critical, Success/Failure
    EI: Effective Impact, essentially the damage points done after factoring in weapon and armor types.
    DTA: Defender Tactical Advantage, an extra free move the defender gets, max 1 per round
    WQ: Weapon Quality


    A. Tunnel

    Wandering monster check: Hobgoblin

    I’ll be using the Black Orc stats for the Hobgoblin (Hgo).

    Round 1

    Eitri vs Hgo: 64/44: MS/MS: Block
    Hgo Handaxe WQ: 10/11: Survives, WQ -1
    Eitri Hammeraxe WQ: 9/15: Survives, WQ -1

    Hgo vs Eitri: 84/93: MF/MS: DTA
    DTA: Eitri vs Hgo: 84/70: MS/CF: A*2: Thorax: EI (Effective Impact): 1: M1: Minor Bruise: Shock Roll: 6/10: Not Shocked
    Hgo: 1 IL (Injury Level)

    Round 2

    Eitri vs Hgo: 59/62: MS/MS: Block
    Hgo Handaxe WQ: 8/10: Survives, WQ -1
    Eitri Hammeraxe WQ: 14/14: Survives, WQ -1

    Hgo vs Eitri: 19/11: MS/MS: Block
    Hgo Handaxe WQ: 8/9: Survives, WQ -1
    Eitri RoundShield WQ: 13/17: Survives, WQ -1

    Round 3

    Eitri vs Hgo: 63/94: MS/MF: A*1: Abdomen: EI: 1: M1: Minor Bruise: Shock Roll: 4/10: Not Shocked
    Hgo: 2 IL

    Hgo vs Eitri: 38/85: MS/CS: DTA
    DTA: Eitri vs Hgo: 55/41: CS/MS: A*1: Thorax: EI: 0: No Injury

    Round 4

    Eitri vs Hgo: 28/98: MS/MF: A*1: Right Shoulder: EI: 0: No Injury

    Hgo vs Eitri: 61/92: MF/MS: DTA
    DTA: Eitri vs Hgo: 40/42: CS/MS: A*1: Abdomen: EI: 1: M1: Minor Bruise: Shock Roll: 16/10: Hgo is down
    Hgo: 3 IL

    The wind fades away as the heroes move into the mine. A long tunnel leads onward, and suddenly from the other end, a cruel humanoid creature arrives. It’s roar is countered by Eitri’s dwarven war cry. The whole party is in a single file, so it’s a one-to-one fight.
    Eitri attacks the hobgoblin with his hammeraxe, and his enemy blocks the attack with his handaxe. He slashes at the dwarf who blocks his strike with his roundshield and finds an opening to counterattack. The hammeraxe finds the hobgoblin at the torso, bruising him.
    His wind lost, the dwarf attacks him again, but the hobgoblin blocks yet another strike. The hobgoblin gathers his strength and attacks only to be blocked by the shield, in the narrow tunnel.
    Eitri hammers down on the hobgoblin who fails to block, and bruises his abdomen.
    Bruised, the hobgoblin tries to hit his challenger, and is blocked again by the shield. Eitri pushes aside the handaxe and with the opening he manages a weak hit on the thorax of the humanoid.
    He follows with another hit on the hobgoblin’s weapon shoulder, too weak to make a difference.
    In vain the hobgoblin attacks again his masterful opponent, is blocked once more, and with the advantage, the dwarf hits him again in the belly. The consecutive strikes are too much for the creature, who falls, beaten.


    B. The First Lair

    I’ll be using the Small Orc stats for both creatures

    Round 1

    Eitri vs Gob: 51/43: MS/MS: Block
    Gob Spear WQ: 14/11: Broken

    Gob Grope Dagger

    Kob vs Rybryn: 65/33: CS/MS: A*1: Thorax: EI: 10: S3: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 7/13: Not Shocked
    Rybrun: 3 IL

    Round 2

    Melas vs Kob: 84/39: MS/MS: Block
    Kob Spear WQ: 11/11: Survives, WQ -1
    Melas LongKnife WQ: 18: Survives, WQ -1

    Rybryn vs Kob: 46/13: MS/MS: Block
    Kob Spear WQ: 5/10: Survives, WQ -1
    Rybryn ShortSword WQ: 15/16: Survives, WQ -1

    Eitri vs Gob: 46/30: MS/CS: DTA
    DTA: Gob vs Eitri: 96/7: MF/MS: DTA
    DTA: Eitri vs Gob: 58/30: MS/CS: DTA: –

    Gob vs Eitri: 65/68: CS/MS: A*1: Left Shoulder: EI: 0: No Injury

    Kob vs Rybryn: 8/91: A*1: Thorax: EI: 11: S3: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 23/13: Rybryn is down
    Rybryn: 6 IL

    Round 3

    Melas vs Kob: 48/51: MS/MS: Block
    Kob Spear WQ: 5/9: Survives, WQ -1
    Melas LongKnife WQ: 10/17: Survives, WQ -1

    Eitri vs Gob: 85/84: CS/MF: A*2: Thorax: EI: 8: S2: Serious Fracture
    Gob: 2 IL

    Gob vs Eitri: 42/32: MS/MS: Block
    Gob Dagger WQ: 7/11: Survives, WQ -1
    Eitri Roundshield WQ: 7/16: Survives, WQ -1

    Kob vs Melas: 19/39: MS/MS: Miss

    Round 4

    Melas vs Kob: 34/6: MS/MS: Block
    Kob Spear WQ: 7/8: Survives, WQ -1
    Melas LongKnife WQ: 14/16: Survives, WQ -1

    Eitri vs Gob: 31/45: MS/CS: DTA
    DTA: Gob vs Eitri: 42/42: Block
    Gob Dagger WQ: 17/10: Broken

    Gob: Morale: MF: Pass/No action

    Kob vs Melas: 79/65: MS/CS: DTA
    DTA: Melas vs Kob: 1/37: Block
    Kob Spear WQ: 9/7: Broken

    Round 5

    Melas vs Kob: 34/49: MS/MS: Miss

    Eitri vs Gob: 47/33: MS/MS: Miss

    Gob: Morale: MF: Pass/No action

    Kob: Grope Dagger

    Round 6

    Melas vs Kob: 13/81: MS/MF: A*1: Abdomen: EI: 9: S3: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 11/10: Kob is down
    Kob: 3 IL

    Eitri vs Gob: 89/27: MS/MS: Miss

    Gob: Morale: MF: Pass/No action

    Round 7

    Melas vs Gob: 71/72: MS/MF: A*1: Abdomen: EI: 9: S3: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 15/10: Gob is down

    As the heroes enter the room, they notice a couple of beds. Probably used to be the miners’, but now they have new occupants. A kobold and a goblin get up, pick their spears and attack.
    Eitri charges at the kobold, who tries to block his attack, breaking his spear in the process. The kobold draws a dagger quickly.
    The elf ranger and the thief engage in combat with the goblin who stabs Rybryn in the chest. She cries out in pain, but stands fighting.
    The heroes try to find an opening, but the goblin takes advantage of the spear’s long reach, and blocks both their attempts. The goblin follows up with another stab at Rybryn. Her belly pierced, the thief falls.
    The dwarf and the kobold exchange several strikes, with the kobold gaining the upper hand and hitting the dwarf in the shoulder. The dagger fails to pierce the mail, and the fight continues.
    The goblin blocks the sindarin ranger’s long knife and strikes back, but the elf dodges out of harm’s way. Eitri hits with his hammeraxe the kobold right in the thorax, fracturing a few ribs. Shaken, the kobold tries to retaliate, but only hits the roundshield.
    Melas slashes at the goblin who blocks the long knife, and tries to stab the elf, but the ranger does a quick side step and hacks the spear shaft in two.
    Eitri attacks the kobold, who ducks. Finding an opening to the dwarf’s side, he jabs, but Eitri brings his roundshield back to bear quickly, snapping the dagger blade. Unarmed, the kobold cowers in the corner, not knowing what to do.
    The heroes miss their enemies, hitting empty air instead and the goblin finds the opportunity to draw a dagger. It doesn’t do him much good as the elf ranger stabs him right in the belly, and he falls to the floor.
    The dwarf tries to finish off the kobold, who jumps around, evading the sweeps.
    All his attention to the dwarf, he misses the elf, who flanks him and stabs his abdomen, sending him to death.
    The heroes gather around their fallen companion and tend to her wounds. Once they’re certain that she’s stable, they look around the room for anything important and press on. They find a long sword and a belt among the rubble.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    I’m not going to run a wandering monsters check as the party is down to two.

    Nothing of interest in this narrow cut cavern in the stone. Only the occasional splashing of water driping from the ceiling.


    D. Orc Lair

    Round 1

    Melas vs Orc: Aim High: 50/33: CS/MS: A*1: Skull: EI: 2: Minor Stab: Shock Roll: 2/10: Not Shocked
    Orc: 1 IL

    Eitri vs Orc: 64/84: MS/MF: A*1: Left Thigh: EI: 8: S2: Serious Fracture: Shock Roll: 8/10: Not Shocked
    Orc: 3 IL

    Orc vs Eitri: 57/85: MF/CS: DTA
    DTA: Eitri vs Orc: 97/79: MS/MF: A*1: Left Knee: EI: 3: M1: Minor Bruise: Shock Roll: 14/10: Orc is down
    Orc: 4 IL

    As soon as the heroes enter this small room, the stench of rotten meat fills their nostrils. With their infravision they make out an the figure as they close in to engage.
    Melas quickly stabs the orc in the skull, while Eitri follows with a heavy bash at it’s thigh, breaking it. It groans and tries to retaliate, but wounded, the dwarf takes advantage and hits it’s left knee. It loses equilibrium and falls to the floor, moaning.
    The dwarf notices a loose stone slab on the floor. Pushing it aside he finds a bag of gold, probably spoils belonging to the defeated orc.


    E. Trapped Room

    Eitri: Awareness: 70: CF
    Greek Fire Trap: 48: MS: A*1: Skull: EI: 2: M1: Minor Burn: Shock Roll: 6/15: Not Shocked.
    Eitri: 1 IL

    A small empty room, with a funny smell. Black ash and soot cover the floors and walls. A steel door with an iron handle sits in the middle of the floor.
    As the dwarf tries to open the door he hears a clicking noise. He’s a bit late, and a jet of greek fire, lets of to his head. The helmet protects him, but without avoiding a slight burn. What’s even worse is that the whole door was a trap as behind it is only rock.


    F. Gnoll Lair

    Round 1

    Melas vs Gno: 42/27: MS/MS: –

    Eitri vs Gno: 25/79: A*2: Right Forearm: EI: 9: S2: Serious Fracture: Shock Roll: 7/10: Not Shocked: Fumble Roll: 14/11: Fail: Drops Mangar in next hex
    Gno: 2 IL

    Gno: Disengage to Mangar hex

    Round 2

    Melas vs Gno: 37/94: MS/MF: A*1: Right Shoulder: EI: 3: M1: Minor Stab: Shock Roll: 12/10: Gno is down
    Gno: 3 IL

    The heroes enter a room and a dozen of small insects buzz past them. Biting flies are everywhere. A large furred gnoll is sharpening his Mangar, and as he sees them attacks.
    The elf tries to hit him, but he steps aside, right into the trajectory of Eitri’s hammeraxe. He hits him in the forearm, seriously hurting him, and causing him to drop his Mangar which clatters to the ground a few feet away. The gnoll jumps back to catch the weapon, and the quick elf stabs his shoulder. The gnoll screams in pain and passes out.
    Searching the creature, they find an invigorating honey-like potion. Melas recognizes it for a potion of healing. Kur’s Drink. They decide to get it back to Rybryn.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    Wandering Monster Check: No monster


    B. The First Lair

    Wandering Monster Check: Monster: Bugbear

    Round 1

    Melas vs Bgb: 83/60: MS/CF: A*2: Skull: EI: 12: S3: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 14/14: Not Shocked
    Bgb: 3 IL

    Eitri vs Bgb: 89/84: MS/MF: A*1: Right Thigh: EI: 6: Serious Fracture: Stumble Roll: 9/12: Not Stumbled: Shock Roll: 16/14: Bgb is down
    Bgb: 5 IL

    I decide Kur’s drink will heal 2d4 IL and allow for a new SR to see if the character is still in shock. It has enough for 3 drinks.
    Rybryn: Heal: 6 IL. Rybryn is back to full health.

    As the heroes get back to where Rybryn is resting they see a bugbear burst in the room. The bugbear sees the two dead humanoids, and then the woman resting on the bed and lets of a loud growl.
    Swiftly Melas attacks, stabbing the creature on the head. It screams in pain. Eitri hits lower at the same time, fracturing it’s thigh. Without having time to react, the creature falls to the ground, motionless.
    Melas gives the healing potion to Rybryn, and by magic, her stab wounds close completely, and she’s back on her feet.


    C. Jagged Cavern

    Wandering Monster Check: No monster


    G. Empty Room

    Wandering Monster Check: No monster

    I decide no to search the pile of dirt in the room.

    The heroes go through a rough room like a cave, a small pile of dirt is at one corner of the room. The party moves onward.


    H. Broken Room

    Melas: 73: MS
    Eitri: 70: CS
    Rybryn: 8: MS

    As the party goes through this large chamber cut from the stone, they notice the walls and ceiling are cracked, and huge chunks of stone have fallen on the floor. Their vibrations cause some more to fall as they pass through, but they avoid it without harm.


    I. Narrow Tunnel

    Round 1

    Eitri vs Orc: 100/24: CF/MS: D*2: Left Thigh: EI: 13: G4: Grevious Cut: Automatic Stumble: Shock Roll: 17/15: Eitri is Down
    Eitri: 5 IL
    Bleeder

    Orc vs Melas: 24/43: MS/MS: –

    Round 2

    Melas vs Orc: 21/95: MS/CF: A*2: Left Hip: EI: 13: G4: Grevious Stab: Automatic Stumble: Shock Roll: 11/10: Orc is Down
    Orc: 4 IL

    Eitri: Kur’s Drink: Heals 3 IL: Shock Roll: 5/15: Eitri is back on his feet.

    The heroes find another narrow tunnel. They go through in a single file, the dwarf in front, the elf in the middle, and the thief in the rear. Suddenly the door at the end of the hall swings open, and a foul orc, lifts its gleaming black axe and marches towards them.
    Eitri engages in combat, but he misses the orc, who counterstrikes, without trying to avoid the dwarf. His counterstrike hits the dwarf with full strength on his thigh. Blood spurts out from the wound. Eitri falls under the weight of his own body.
    The orc steps over his fallen foe and tries to hack at the elf ranger, who avoids the strike with agility.
    Melas now jabs at the orc, his long knife hitting the orc’s hip piercing it through and through. The creature lets off a scream, and faints through pain, dropping down in shock.
    Without wasting any more time, the elf administers a dose of Kur’s drink to the dwarf, whose wound starts closing, but not completely. Yet, the dwarf recovers, and can fight once more.


    J. The Story Room

    I’m not rolling a wandering monsters check since the next room has a major fight.

    The heroes enter a large chamber that has been polished smooth. Ancient dwarvish runes are carved into the walls. Eitri reads them out aloud. They tell of the story of the digging of the mine and the work that the dwarves did there. Near the end, it mentions that the dwarves found a vein of glowing iron unlike anything they had seen before. They mined this strange ore, which they called eisenmond and found they could make weapons of great magic with it.
    As they mined for more eisenmond they discovered some dark and evil secret about the mountain, without saying anything more than that they packed up and left overnight.
    The story ends by saying that they left behind a large nugget of eisenmond which glowed brighter than the rest, in the care of someone called the Stone King.
    The heroes realize that this is the key to the secret of the mountain, and what Gustovan sent them there to find.


    K. The Iron Mine

    Round 1

    Melas vs Orc: 8/13: MS/MS: Block
    Orc: Handaxe WQ: 12/11: Broken

    Rybryn vs Orc: 94/24: MF/MS: Dodge: –

    Eitri vs Gob: 25/36: CS/MS: A*1: Thorax: EI: 0: No impact

    Gob vs Eitri: 42/49: MS/MS: Block
    Gob: Handaxe WQ: 17/11: Broken

    Kob vs Eitri: 58/90: MS/CF: A*2: Face: Eye: EI: 13: G4: Grievous Stab: Shock Roll: 18/15: Eitri is down
    Eitri: 6 IL

    Gno vs Melas: 72/43: MF/MS: Dodge: –

    Orc: Gropple dagger

    Round 2

    Melas vs Gno: 36/54: MS/MS: Dodge: –

    Rybryn vs Orc: 64/3: MS/MS: Dodge: –

    Gob: Gropple dagger

    Kob vs Melas: 86/3: MF/MS: DTA
    DTA Melas vs Kob: 15/67: CS/MF: A*2: Abdomen: EI: 10: S3: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 13/10: Kob is down

    Gno vs Melas: 34/18: MS/MS: Dodge: –

    Orc vs Rybryn: 29/43: MS/MS: Dodge: –

    Round 3

    Melas vs Gno: High: 53/93: MS/MF: A*1: Skull: EI: 3: M1: Minor Stab: Shock Roll: 6/10: Not Shocked
    Gno: 1 IL

    Rybryn vs Orc: 2/25: MS/CS: DTA
    DTA: Orc vs Rybryn: 25/49: CS/MS: A*1: Left Upper Arm: EI: 9: S2: Serious Stab: Fumble Roll: 11/18: No Fumble: Shock Roll: 7/13: Not Shocked
    Rybryn: 2 IL

    Gob vs Melas: 75/84: MF/CS: DTA
    DTA Melas vs Gob: 6/79: MS/MF: A*1: Thorax: EI: 5: S2: Shock Roll: 2/10: Not Shocked
    Gob: 2 IL

    Gno vs Melas: 78/54: MF/MS: DTA: –

    Orc vs Rybryn: 16/15: MS/CS: DTA
    DTA Rybryn vs Orc: 94/56: MF/MS: Dodge: –

    Round 4

    Melas vs Gob: 73/19: MS/MS: Dodge: –

    Rybryn vs Orc: 64/98: MS/MF: A*1: Neck: EI: 1: M1: Minor Cut: Shock Roll: 2/10: Not Shocked
    Orc: 1 IL

    Gob vs Melas: 33/59: MS/MS: Block
    Gob: Dagger WQ: 8/11: Survives, WQ -1
    Melas LongKnife WQ: 9/15: Survives, WQ -1

    Gno vs Melas: 66/25: DTA
    DTA Melas vs Gno: 8/27: Block
    Gno Mang WQ: 11/11: Survives, WQ -1
    Melas LongKnife WQ: 8/14: Survives, WQ -1

    Orc vs Rybryn: 87/26: MF/MS: DTA
    DTA Rybryn vs Orc: 30/36: CS/MS: A*1: Right Upper Arm: EI: 4: M1: Minor Cut: Fumble Roll: 16/11: Drop weapon, current hex: Shock Roll: 6/10: Not Shocked
    Orc: 2 IL

    Round 5

    Melas vs Gob: 6/17: MS/MS: (Counterstrike): B1
    A
    1: Neck: EI: 8: S2: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 14/10: Gob is down
    D*1: Skull: EI: 6: S2: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 10/14: Not Shocked
    Gob: 4 IL
    Melas: 2 IL

    Rybryn vs Orc: 40/52: CS/MS: A*1: Abdomen: EI: 1: M1: Minor Cut: Shock Roll: 9/10: Not Shocked
    Orc: 3 IL

    Gno vs Melas: 51/01: MF/MS: DTA
    DTA: Melas vs Gno: 11/06: MS/MS: CS: B1:
    A
    1: Right Thigh: EI: 7: S2: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 11/10: Gno is down
    D*1: Right Hand: EI: 8: 0: No Impact
    Gno: 3 IL

    Orc: Gropple dagger

    Round 6

    Melas vs Orc: 3/98: MS/MF: (CounterStrike): A*1: Face: Mouth: EI: 8: S2: Serious Stab: Shock Roll: 14/10: Orc is down
    Orc: 5 IL

    Kur’s Drink on Eitri: 5 IL Healed, 1 IL remaining. Shock Roll:2/15: Revived

    The heroes enter a vast chamber that is roughly carved and still being worked. Small veins of iron ore still line the walls. Four monsters work the mine, and as they see the party they howl and attack.
    Melas closes in on the orc, who tries to block his jab. The orcish handaxe is too crude for the fine elven longknife, and the axehead shatters. The orc draws a dagger as Rybryn flanks him, and dodges the attack.
    Eitri locks himself in combat with the goblin and hits the humanoid in the torso, but the strike is too weak to hurt the creature, who attacks back. The goblin’s handaxe finds the tough dwarven roundshield and the hilt breaks in two. With his attention to the goblin, Eitri, fails to notice the kobold who jumps right in front of him, and stabs him with a dagger right in the eye socket, bypassing the helmet. The dwarf lets off a scream that echoes in the chamber, and holding his head, he falls to the ground.
    The gnoll comes in to support the orc who fights alone against the two heroes, but his attack against Melas fails and they dance around fighting, not scoring any hits. The kobold leaves the downed dwarf and sneaks to flank Melas as well, but the elf skewers him, and it drops.
    Rybryn and the orc keep fighting each other, and after a couple unsuccessful exchanges, the orc gain the advantage and stabs the thief’s left arm. She cries out at the wound, but holds on to the fight.
    Melas is fighting alone against both the gnoll and the goblin who has drawn a dagger. He manages to wound each, while dodging their blows. A few more hits end in clashes, the weapons blocking each other.
    Rybryn slashes at the orc, neck height, spilling some blood, the orc lunges back, only to fall into a feint, and she hacks at his arm, disarming him, the dagger clattering at the floor.
    Melas charges at the goblin, who decides it’s all or nothing, and forfeits any defence in favor of scoring a hit. They stab at each other, the long knife pierces through the goblin’s neck, finishing him, while the elf is hurt at the side of his head. The wound is serious, but he stands. The gnoll attacks Melas right away, hoping to hit the disoriented elf, but he’s mastered by his opponent. Melas stabs the gnoll at the thigh. The wound is too much for the gnoll and it falls. He barely hits Melas’ weapon hand as he delivers the hit, but the armor absorbs it.
    Rybryn gets past the orc’s defense, as it reaches down to get back his dagger. The thief’s shortsword hacks at his belly. The thief is assisted by his friend, and the elf dispatches the orc, with a through and through hit at his mouth.
    Weary and hurt, quickly the heroes pour the last contents of Kur’s drink into Eitri’s mouth. He barely manages to gulp it, but soon the healing properties of this potent potion take effect. While he’s not entirely healthy again, he’s been saved from certain death, and his vision is partially restored. If they make it out of the mine alive, he’ll need a healer.
    Searching through their opponents belongings, they find a cool silver ring, and a coil of rope. The thief takes them both.


    L. Tunnel of Death

    Rybryn: Awareness: 29: MS
    Rybryn: Lockcraft: 63: MS

    The heroes enter a smooth and straight tunnel. The floor is marked with the dark stains of dried blood. As they reach the door to the other side, Rybryn gestures the group to stop. She has noticed a mechanism that would release piles of rocks from the ceiling to fall upon them. After a short while she disarms it, and the party enters the next room.


    M. Mysterious Fountain

    In the center of the room is a stone fountain, carved in the image of a large dragon that coils around itself and sprays water out of its mouth. The water lands in a polished stone pool that has been cut into the floor around the statue. The air is sweet with the smell of fresh water. The heroes drink from the water to quench their thirst, and in a magical way, all their wounds and fatigue disappear.
    They look around the room and see that there are no more doors, and it appears to be the end of the mine. But knowing that they haven’t found either the Stone Kind or the large lump of eisenmond, they start searching for a secret door.

    Wandering Monster check: No monster

    Rybryn: Awareness: 37: MS

    They find the secret door.


    N. Sloping Passage

    The tunnel has been cut downards at a sharp angle. Walking down is very dangerous, but with the rope, the heroes descend it with great care.


    O. The Eisenmond Mine

    The heroes finally enter a rough stone chamber, with flakes of a mysterious glowing ore flickering in the walls, floor and ceiling, making the dark walls shimmer like a starry night.
    In the center, sitting on a small stone pedestal, is a short statue carved from a single granite block. It depicts a dwarf with a pick and other mining gear, missing it’s head which is tossed in the corner. The head sports a rusty crown, fashioned from iron, The statue’s hands are open and held out as if it was holding something.

    Okay, so here’s a puzzle concerning players and not characters, but it can be resolved with Int checks, which I will test.

    Eitri: Awareness: 27: MS: He finds a secret compartment with two nuggets of eisenmond, that fit perfectly on the eye sockets of the statue’s head.

    Eitri: Intelligence: 9/13: Success: He considers placing the head back on the statue.

    Searching around for secret doors, Eitri finds a small compartment in the pedestal that contains two nuggets of eisenmond. His keen senses tell him that they fit perfectly to the head, and he proceeds to place them there.
    The party looks at the head. Then Eitri decides to pay homage to his ancestors, and re-assemble the statue.
    As soon as the statue is assembled, a strange light fills the room. The stone body of the statue glows and the mouth moves slowly. In a voice deep and old as the mountain around, the statue speaks.
    It says about how the mine belongs to the dwarves, and how good it is that the heroes have arrived because a great evil has tainted the spirit of the place. The priceless magical stone called the Eisenkern was stolen, and along with it, the power to trap the beast that lives at the heart of the mountain. If the Eisenkern is not returned, that terrible beast will be freed, and a horrible evil will come upon all who dwell in these lands.


    Ending the Adventure

    The heroes return and report their story to Gustovan, who seems troubled by it. He rewards them and takes thought of the matter.


    The System

    Okay, this turned out more or less how I expected it to.
    Hârnmaster combat needed a lot of bookkeeping, and was deadly, but to be honest it was the most interesting set of fantasy combat rules I’ve played so far. I’m certain I’ve done several mistakes, especially near the EML (Effective Mastery Level – essentially the skill level after modifiers), and considering the deadliness of the system, the outcome could have been different. Nevertheless, it is what it is, and I’m not one to nitpick a solo crunchy game.
    So Hârnmaster has a very smart way to run combat. The attacker chooses a zone of attack (low, mid, high. defaults to mid) and weapon attack type (bludgeon, edge, piercing, defaults to highest impact) while the defender chooses their defense (block, counterstrike, dodge, ignore), and depending on their choices, there’s a large array of possible results (as you may have derived from the session). This all makes things interesting. You may have noticed that there were only a few results in combat where nothing happened.
    Usually it had to do with the dodge defense, which is what I’d call the safest defense approach, followed by block, and finally counterstrike where you forfeit defending, and something is bound to happen. There’s a caveat though with dodge, – it’s a separate skill.
    The results of combat include strikes, blocks, fumbles, stumbles, nothing (dodge), and defender tactical advantage. Now the defender tactical advantage is what I’d call an opening, The defender gets a free action. This is very effective in getting more dense action in a round, and higher chance for something happening. Also blocks have a chance to break your weapon, and also reduce your weapon’s quality. For how long can you keep blocking the enemy strikes before you end up unarmed? That’s an extra reason to carry a secondary weapon.
    Now, for wounds, the strike locations have a wide array of body parts that you may hit. I went with the detailed option and not the merged ones that are available in the Dead Weight w/Quickstart adventure.
    There you roll and calculate your effective impact, and get the resulting injury. The injury may cause a stumble or fumble, which will shift the battle one way or another, and of course there’s a good chance for a wound that will drop your character. Don’t go into battle unarmored!
    What I really liked was how Shock Rolls include every injury, so the combatant may either fall due to accumulation of minor wounds, a new serious wound, or a mix of both.
    Of course being wounded reduces your ability to fight properly and to do other physical tasks.
    Another clever mechanic of Hârnmaster was spreading the Critical results among the entire range. Criticals happen whenever a _0 or _5 is rolled on the d100. Which means that the better you are, you have a higher chance to roll a critical success, but also if you’re not so good, you have a higher chance to roll a critical failure.
    Injuries healing mechanics are equally crunchy (there’s a whole process to it, I won’t go into detail now), and may take weeks for full recovery.

    What about the Dungeon Crawl?

    All this results in a gritty low fantasy game. So I had to give my characters a chance to survive a dungeon crawl which otherwise would not be possible. I considered the healing potion as written in Dragon Quest, and saw it heals 2d4 hit points. So I decided that it will heal 2d4 Injury Levels, instantly. The last part is essentially important, as anything longer than that means, the wounded party member is not functional. I did include a new Shock Roll to give a chance that they won’t recover, but thankfully it did not happen.
    The pregenerated characters were a tad bit strong (they were rolled by their authors), which is also in line with the Draqon Quest adventure where the heroes are full hit die. Also I did not want to spend time generating characters (even using points) because it wasn’t the aim of my experiment.
    Following the Hârnmaster combat to the letter, made using a bow in a dungeon redundant. It’s scaled to a more realistic range, so there’s no reason the elf ranger would try to shoot a monster within melee range, and he used the long knife instead. I could have given him the option to shoot above the dwarf, when standing behind him in the narrow corridors. Maybe I should have, it would have made things more interesting and given me the opportunity to also see how missile combat works. Maybe next time.
    Also the thief, in regular D&D/Dragon Quest, they should be able to hide out of sight. I did not try to do this at all. It felt wrong to me for them to vanish in plain sight. But again maybe I should try it, since the chaos of the combat and the crammed and dark dungeon conditions would allow this. I’ll consider it for next time.
    I did follow the advice given in the adventure book on when to roll wandering monsters, and it all turned out quite ok.
    Overall with the modifications I did, I find it was a balanced experience, and my party was at constant risk of failure. They were stronger than the individual monsters, but the constant fights did wear them down, as a proper dungeon crawl should.
    As to the story, I must confess that without warping the adventure I got quite bored at about the start. There was no suspense at all, and it felt like an arena fight. I’m pondering at my next attempt to change things a bit.

    Summary

    Hârnmaster is still on the list of my favorite RPG systems. It’s more detailed than Mythras/Runequest. Compared to MERP/Rolemaster, it feels like in Hârnmaster you run the equation, while in MERP you lookup the result. I did enjoy this dungeon crawl, albeit I will need to make it feel less like a board game, and more like an RPG by introducing some Solo Oracle/GME elements.

     
    • drjmcmillan 8:25 pm on September 19, 2021 Permalink | Reply

      Hi Giorgis. Am a keen solo’er myself and have just stumbled across your blog due to your Secret Clocks system. HAve subscribed. I’ll enjoy seeing what you employ and when. Thanks for blogging.

      Liked by 1 person

      • giorgis 9:41 pm on September 19, 2021 Permalink | Reply

        Hi,
        Thanks for the subscription and kind feedback!
        Hope you enjoy.

        Like

    • Gatou 1:10 am on January 8, 2022 Permalink | Reply

      Hello Giorgis – first of all, amazing blog. I started on reddit with your SWd6 Solo Adeventure and moved here when you shared the link, oh boy was I glad to see all this content ! Super interesting, and definitely convincing me to try again at solo RPing. I had tried Ironsworn, then moved to Star Wars with the Starforged engine, their official scifi hack, but as I was digging into my d6 material you showed me that with a couple of twist on the d6 engine it can surely be a lot of fun.

      As I’ve started a Harn campaign, using the Burning Wheel as the system, I was wondering if you had tried this one on solo mode.

      Liked by 1 person

      • giorgis 10:56 am on January 8, 2022 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you!
        Unfortunately I haven’t tried the Burning Wheel system. Heard good things about it though.
        I love Hârnmaster and it’s on my to do list for a more complete adventure.

        Like

  • giorgis 6:37 pm on September 7, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Solo   

    A monster’s bounty – A weird cyberpunk fantasy adventure – S1E08 

    Brief summary: Lt. Athen Smarte is a Hunter. Solitary warriors who hunt down and dispatch warp monsters. In the last session she found a new lead to follow.

    I’m digging deeper into Mythic, and I’ll be using Mythic Variations 2 for this session. I’ve also skimmed through Mythic Variations 1 to mainly for theory and examples to help me understand Mythic GME better.

    Therefore, I’m reducing CF to 6 to be in line with MV2 (Mythic Variations 2).

    I’m deducing that German Kennet is in possession of a car. I can’t think of another way he would be moving around Mr Morikai, so it makes sense that he has one.

    Q: Does it make sense to play out the fixer scene?
    A: No

    So, she’ll try to purchase a couple of SMGs from Merlin, and Night Vision goggles in case they need to go underground.
    Wealth (d8): 4,4: Success. Success, but Wealth die drops to d6.

    So, next scene will be them following Alcantar, waiting in German’s car until he shows up.


    Is the scene modified? 2 against 6: Interrupted: PC Positive: Guide a Project.

    I’m not sure about my interpretation, so I’m gonna ask:
    Q: Is she asked to root out any traitors in the guild by Col. Faulkner?
    A: No

    I was just about to scratch the interrupt scene in favor of the 10-second rule, then it became 100 seconds, then 1000 seconds. I so much hate disregarding mechanics, even when told to do so by the oracle. In the end, as I am about to give in. I decide a more liberal approach. Maybe “project” means one of Smarte’s goals (right now the threads she’s following), and maybe “guide”, means, someone has information to help her towards the goal. All in the context of PC-Positive.

    Returning from the meeting with Merlin, Lt. Smarte and Mr. Kennet park outside Athen’s Appartment. They’ve gotten themselves some more serious firepower and night vision gadgets to use, in case things turn more serious than they already are.
    As they step outside, a destitute pushes her.
    They look at each other for a moment.
    “You!” She gasps out. “You’re the woman from the station. You really showed them! Filthy corporate scum.”
    Athen instictively looks around to make sure she’s not heard.

    Q: Is the destitute woman heard? (Unlikely)
    A: Yes

    A couple of passers by look at her.
    “Shush! You must have mistaken me for someone else!” Athen shushes the beggar woman, and looks at her with meaning, hoping she can get the message through to the deranged mind.

    Persuasion (d6): 10, 5: Success with a raise.

    “Ah yes, you all look alike.” She says loudly, understanding Athen. “Come, come, I’ve got something to show you.” She tugs Athen from her jacket to follow her.

    Detail Check: Sadness, Ceaselessly Mysterious.

    Kennet looks at Smarte, and she motions for him to come along. They follow the beggar woman in a back alley, and she heads to a sewer grate and opens it.
    “Why go into the sewers?” Athen asks.
    “That’s how I escaped that night. The metro and the sewers connect, in an endless maze. Noone knows how to walk them. They all get lost. Except that man. The man with the third eye.” The beggar lady says. “I followed him from a distance.”
    “Take us to there then!” Athen asks.

    Q: Does the beggar woman agree to guide them in the sewers? (Unlikely, she seems scared)
    A: No

    “I saw piles of dead people. Terrible stuff. Nightmares. The hunters should not have allowed this to happen. No. We’re alone again. I’m not going back in there.” The beggar woman responds.

    Persuasion (d6): 10, 5: Success with a raise.

    “I’m a hunter.” Athen replies. “You lead me, and we’ll make those monsters pay.”
    The woman thinks it over. “I’ll guide you part of the way. Then I go back. Don’t get lost.”
    Athen nods.
    “I’ll go bring the support.” German says and he goes to bring the sack with the weapons from the trunk.
    Soon the three of them are in the sewers.

    I’m not 100% certain I chose the right interpretations. But it keeps the story going, though I must confess that it feels biased, even if the interpretations fit with the story threads.

    I’m keeping the CF at 6.


    I was so tempted to make this another dungeon crawl (or should I saw sewer crawl), but I’m still going to play by Mythic’s rules and guidelines to the best of my ability. Mythic plays with scenes, and that’s what I’m doing.

    Athen and German, follow the beggar woman into the sewers to the point of interest.

    Is the Scene modified? 8 against 6: No

    Q: Do they encounter anything on the way there?
    A: No

    Q: Do they get lost?
    A: No

    After a good while into the dark, searching around corners, following their guide, she suddenly stops.
    “Go forth. Second junction to the right. I’m not coming along.” She says.
    “Will you wait for us here?” Athen asks.

    Q: Will she? (Unlikely)
    A: Yes (barely)

    She nods. “But only for a little while. If I hear noise, I’m gone, like the rats.”
    Athen taps her right hand over her heart in a thank you gesture. She knows the old lady risks a lot by waiting.
    “If you don’t find me, follow the yellow arrows. They’ll get you to the orange line. You’ll figure it out from there.” She adds, and the duo arms their guns and treads carefully onwards.

    I’ll do another detail check here. “What do they find?”: Focus Thread: Investigate occult rituals in Ocano Point: Offensively Small

    Q: Is a small humanoid shaman there?
    A: Yes

    So it’s a short goblin.

    Q: Are there more goblins with him?
    A: Yes

    Q: Are there any humans alongside?
    A: Exceptional yes, and random event.

    I take that exceptional yes means that they’re collaborators as well as victims.

    Before resolving the random event I’ll set up the scene a bit.

    As the armed duo takes the second junction to the right, they hear speech. Human tongues and non-human tongues exchanging words in an unknown language. They also hear screams for help in what sounds clearly as human.
    Closing in, they see several short gaunt figures armed with crude weapons, bashing around some men and women, who clearly seem captured.
    What catches their attention though is a goblin – that’s what they make of the humanoid figures – shorter than the rest, wearing a tall hat as if to appear larger than what it is. He’s carrying a staff on one hand, with a green glowing orb on top, and a serrated dagger on the other. Next to him is a human, with whom he seems to have a proper conversation.
    All around the room are similar fusions of bodies to the ones she saw over at Ocano Point. What is nauseating is that some of these bodies seem to be still moving, albeit like a headless chicken moves.

    Let’s resolve the Random Event now: NPC Positive: Goblins: Assist Jealousy

    Two of the goblins seem to be antagonizing each other as they bring a prisoner to the shaman. He laughs and tells them something in their dark speech which only makes them more furious, and they each cut off the limbs of their victim and present them to their leader. The victim, as if under the influence, screams but doesn’t try to move.

    I deem that’s a good time for a good old Spirit check.

    Athen: Spirit (d6): 5, 4: Success
    German: Spirit (d4): 3: Failure: Vigor (d6): 5: Success. German is Shaken.

    Let’s see if Athen notices her teammate’s status
    Athen: Notice (d6): 2,4: Success

    German, almost pukes at the gross sight. He barely holds it inside. As Athen was ready to barge guns blazing, she pauses, and instead tries to get in a vantage point, hiding in the shadows.

    Athen: Stealth (d6): 3,5: Success

    Now German must make another Spirit roll: 2: Failure

    Athen aims at the goblins, while German still tries to force himself to look at the monsters. In the meantime, the shaman takes the two hands and places them together in a pile of flesh, and starts mumbling some dark spell, while sparks of green light flow from his staff to the pile.

    Athen looks carefully to the man next to the shaman, see if she recognizes him under the dim light.
    Athen: Notice (d6): 9,5: Success with a Raise.

    Q: Does she recognize him? (Likely)
    A: Yes, and Random Event.

    Q: Is it dirty official?
    A: No, then it must be Holbrook Alcantar

    Q: Is it Holbrook? (Sure Thing)
    A: Yes

    Random Event: Close a thread: Investigate third eye drug exchange: Overindulge Representative

    She recognizes the man to be their target, Holbrook Alcantar, the person who was in league with Morikai.
    Holbrook watches the shaman cast his spell, then, as he finishes, he opens up his briefcase, full of pills. He kneels and presents it to the shaman. The goblin smiles sardonically and passes his hand over the pills, while spewing spit and words. The pills then start glowing green, like the ones Athen saw at the drug exchange. That’s the source.

    Q: Do the goblins go pick another victim?
    A: Yes

    The antagonizing goblin guards smile and walk back to the prisoners, while Athen waits for Kennet to recover. She can’t wait forever.

    Now German must make another Spirit roll: 15: Success with two Raises.

    Kennet takes a few deep breaths. And looks back at the scene and Athen, who gestures for him to open fire.

    I’ll try to get some numbers down for the combat.
    Goblins (1d6+2): 3 + the shaman
    Prisoners (1d10+1): 4
    Room size: 36
    Distance to goblins: 21

    Q: Is there another exit?
    A: Yes, at the back of the room


    Round 1: Athen+Kennet 8S, Goblins 7H, Shaman+Holbrook 6C

    Athen 1 shot at each goblin: Shooting (d10),-2: 2,3,8,1: 1 Success: 10/4: Wounded: Goblin 3 is down
    Kennet 2 & 1 shot at each goblin: Shooting (d6),-2: 5,1,2: Miss
    Goblin 1: runs to Athen: 10: Distance 11
    Goblin 2: runs to Kennet: 6: Distance 15
    Goblin Shaman: 2 bolts at Athen, 1 bolt at Kennet: Spellcasting (d10),-2: 9,9,7,4: Success, Success, Success: 2, 19, 5: Athen is Wounded Twice: Benny: Soak Roll: 3,7: Success: 1 Wound removed.

    Q: Does Holbrook flee? (Likely)
    A: Exceptional No. He also pulls his pistol and shoots.

    Holbrook: Shoots Kennet: Shooting (d4),-4: 7: Miss


    Round 2: Athen+Kennet 6H, Goblins QS, Shaman+Holbrook 8C
    Goblin 1: runs to Athen: 9: Distance 2
    Goblin 2: runs to Kennet: 6: Distance 9
    Goblin Shaman: Zombie: Spellcasting (d10): Success: 1 Zombie is risen for 1 hour
    Holbrook: Shoots Kennet: Shooting (d4),-4: 3: Miss
    Athen Spirit (d6): 10, 4: Not Shaken & Acts: Quick Draw Pistol: Double Tap Goblin 1: 7,1: Hit: 14/4: Wounded: Goblin 1 is down
    Kennet shoots FA at Goblin 2: Shooting (d6),-2: 5,5,3: Miss


    Round 3: Athen+Kennet AS, Goblins 5S, Shaman+Holbrook KH
    Athen: Double Tap Goblin Shaman: Shooting (d10),-2: 2,4: Miss: Benny: 6,1: Hit: 6/4: Shaken
    Kennet shoots FA at Goblin 2: Shooting (d6),-2: 2,5,2: Miss
    Goblin Shaman: Spirit (d8): 7,2: Success: Not Shaken
    Holbrook: Shoots Kennet: Shooting (d4),-4: 3: Miss
    Goblin 2: runs to Kennet: 7: Distance 2


    Round 4: Athen+Kennet 10D, Goblins 10C, Shaman+Holbrook 2S
    Athen: Double Tap Goblin Shaman: Shooting (d10),-2: 7,3: Hit: 14: 2 Wounds: Soak Roll: Vigor (d4): 7,5: Success: 1 Wound
    Kennet: shoots FA at Goblin 2: Shooting (d6),-2: 2,5,2: 10: Success with a Raise: Hit: 33/4: Goblin 2 is down
    Goblin Shaman: Spirit (d8): 7,2: Success: Not Shaken
    Holbrook: Shoots Kennet: Shooting (d4),-4: 3: Miss
    Zombie: runs to Kennet: 7: Distance 14


    Round 5: Athen+Kennet AH, Shaman+Holbrook KC
    Athen: Close in 6, SA Goblin Shaman: Shooting (d10),-3: 7,1: Hit: 8: 1 Wound
    Kennet: Reloads
    Goblin Shaman: Spirit (d8): 2,3: Shaken
    Holbrook: Shoots Kennet: Shooting (d4),-4: 1: Miss
    Zombie: runs to Kennet: 9: Distance 5


    Round 6: Athen+Kennet AD, Shaman+Holbrook 2H
    Athen: Close in 6, Reload
    Kennet: shoots FA at Zombie: Shooting (d6),-2: 3,3,5: Miss
    Goblin Shaman: Spirit (d8): 2,1: Shaken
    Holbrook: Shoots Kennet: Shooting (d4),-4: 5: Miss
    Zombie: runs to Kennet: 10: Distance Close


    Round 7: Athen+Kennet JH, Shaman+Holbrook KD
    Goblin Shaman: Spirit (d8),-2: 9,9: Not Shaken
    Holbrook: Shoots Athen: Shooting (d4): 5: Hit: 9/8: Shaken
    Zombie: attacks Kennet: Fighting (d6): 4: Miss
    Athen Spirit (d6): 17, 5: Not Shaken & Acts: Double Tap Goblin Shaman: Shooting (d10): 6,4: Hit: 12: 2 Wounds. Goblin Shaman is down.
    Kennet clubs the zombie with the SMG: Fighting (d6): 5: Hit: 12/7: Wounded: Zombie is down


    Round 8: Athen+Kennet JS, Holbrook 9D

    Kennet attempts to make Holbrook surrender: Intimidation (d6): 5: Success

    Q: Does Holbrook surrender? (Likely)
    A: Yes

    They start shooting off their submachineguns. Bullets spraying everywhere. The loud bangs echoing in the sewers. The flash of the gun barrels is evident, and as the first goblin falls under the hail of fire, the two others run towards the intruders.
    The goblin shaman points his staff towards them and green bolts fly off, one of them hitting Athen right in the chest, piercing the kevlar and wounding her.
    Holbrook, trying to show off to his friends doesn’t run away, instead he pulls out a small .22, and crouched, he starts shooting back.
    Athen grouches, and despite her wound, she stands up, drops the submachinegun and pulls her pistol. She puts two into another goblin, advancing towards her.
    Kennet keeps shooting at full auto, missing by a long shot, while the goblin closes in.
    The goblin shaman casts another spell. This time he aims at the pile, and a shambling flesh creation is animated and starts walking to the party.
    Athen shoots the shaman again, and again and again, walking towards the little bastard who is suppressed. One by one her bullets find their targets, and after putting a fresh clip in the chamber, a bullet blows his brains out.
    At the other side, German has emptied a whole clip, and it is by sheer luck that he managed to kill the charging greenskin. He understands his limitations, so when the animated zombie comes at him, he just uses the submachinegun as a makeshift club. Bashing the abomination’s head again and again until it stops moving.
    The group then turns their attention to Holbrook. Bloody angry faces, they aim their weapons at him.
    “Drop it!” German growls to Holbrook. “Unless you wanna join your friends in Warp Heaven.”
    Holbrook looks back at the exit, but he knows he’s missed his chance. He drops his pistol and surrenders.


    They tie him up and look around for anything else, before starting the interrogation.

    Athen: Notice (d6): 9,4: Success with a Raise.

    Q: Is there anything of interest?
    A: Yes
    Q: What is it? (Detail Check)
    A: Focus PC: Miserably Interesting

    Athen finds that the victims were mostly run down people. The poor and the downtrodden. But what raises the interest of Athen is that she finds several IDs belonging to military or security personnel. It seems that the goblins aimed at both the people noone would notice, as well as the people that would defend Morieva. Maybe the tainted wheat she read in the messages was tainted with this drug substance.

    I will try out the Behavior Check of MV2 now, as Athen and German interrogate their prisoner.

    Holbrook Alcantar
    Identity: Corrupt official, goblin collaborator
    Personality: Roughly familiar
    Activity: Lie dispute
    Disposition: Passive (-2)
    Theme: Interrogation
    NPC Action 1: NPC Action: NPC Action 2: Talks, Exposition

    Haha, sometimes Mythic’s results fit in perfectly. I rolled a descriptor here, but as expected it made no sense, and since I have all the information I need, I’ll disregard it, and run along the conversation.

    German puts his gun on the collaborator’s head, while Athen kicks the dropped .22 away.
    “Start talking.” He demands.
    “Alright, alright. We bring placebo pills to the goblins and they warp them to make the recipients suitable subjects.” He starts saying.
    “To what end? Who else is involved?” Athen asks.

    NPC Action 1: NPC Continues
    Q: Are there others involved?
    A: Exceptional Yes
    Q: To what end? (Detail Check)
    A: Postpone Death

    Holbrook laughs. “You have no idea what you’ve gotten yourself into, right? We’re everywhere. The cream of the cream of Morieva’s administration.”
    German hits him with the end of his gun. “Why?”
    “Oh but for what else? Immortality. You see wicked magics, we see untapped potential. We can live forever.” Holbrook laughs again.
    “What do the goblins get out of it?” She asks.

    NPC Action 1: NPC Action: NPC Action 2: Acts Out of PC Interest

    Q: What do the goblins get out of it? (Detail Check)
    A: Haggle Plans

    “They have plans. A grand strategy for all the world. But now we get to negotiate with them. We get to be part of their strategy. All because you managed to defeat them in the wars. We have to thank you for that Ranger.” Holbrook replies.
    Athen shudders that the man knows she served in the wars as a ranger. That could be deduced of course, but is it possible that he knows more about her? Are the hunters infiltrated by collaborators?
    “What plans?” She demands.

    NPC Action 1: NPC Continues +2: Gives Something: Debase Plot

    “Morieva is but the beginning. Once we’re successful, more will follow. We will take control of the city. The next war is going to be from the inside. By the time they realize what is happening, it will be too late.” Holbrook adds.
    “Names. Start giving names.” German says.

    NPC Action 1: Theme Action

    He will give them 2d6 names: 10. Politicians, officers, corporate suits.

    Q: Is Col. Faulkner between them? (No Way)
    A: Yes, Random Event: NPC Negative: German Kennet: Inquire Intrigues

    Donjon: Bryana Graydon, female journalist. Bryana is common in appearance, with blonde hair and gray eyes. She wears a casual skirt and blouse and cloche hat. Bryana is calm and impartial.

    Among the names there is Bryana Graydon, a female journalist. The moment German listens to her name, he steps back, as if hit by a truck. Holbrook continues, and also tells them about Col. Faulkner. Athen feels the ground beneath her disappear. Noone to trust. Nowhere. They look at each other. Holbrook smiles.
    “He’s lying!” German shouts. “They know about us and he’s lying to shake us.” He aims his pistol at Holbrook.
    “We can’t take the risk.” Athen replies. “We must find out if he’s telling the truth. Even if we waste precious time.” Tie him up. He’s coming with us.

    Chaos Factor remains at 6. The characters are in control of their immediate surrounding, but it seems the whole world is against them.

    I’m adding Bryana Graydon to the list.

    The third eye thread as well as the ocano point investigation thread are closed, and only the main thread remains.


    The next scene will have Col. Faulkner invited to Athen’s appartment and try to find out if he’s telling the truth.

    Is the scene modified? Yes: Altered Scene: Faulkner will arrive with muscle.

    It hasn’t been long since Athen hang up the phone call with Col. Faulkner. She explained to him that she had to see him in person for an urgent matter, with discretion, as she couldn’t trust the phone lines for possible hacking.
    Holbrook is tied up and gagged in one end of the room, and German is watching him for any attempt to escape.
    Is he fooling with them? Lying and trying to throw dust in their eyes? Or enjoys telling them the truth, certain that they can’t do anything to alter the course of the upcoming events. The collaborators are not known for their tongues to roll so easily. Yet, she’s been shaken, and watches out of the window, waiting for the Colonel to arrive.
    Then he sees him, come, in full uniform. Alongside with him are two more unis.
    “Shit.” Athen mumbles. ‘What could this mean?’
    She grabs her sidearm and turns to German. “We’ve got company. The colonel is here, but not alone.”
    They put Holbrook right in the middle of the room, open the door, and take positions, out of line of sight, at the sides of the room.

    There are several explanations as to why the Col. arrived with security, so the best thing to do is a detail check.

    Q: What is their reaction when they see Holbrook?
    A: Attainment the public
    The what now?

    Okay. So public… Holbrook is a public servant. They try to grab him.

    Q: Does Holbrook try to warn them about the armed captors?
    A: Yes

    Crap. The worst case scenario. There’s only a very slight chance they’re not allies.

    I’ll make an opposed Notice vs Stealth roll.
    5 Notice vs 10,7 Stealth. Athen succeeded with a Raise.

    The bodyguards, followed by the Colonel, arrive outside the apartment and see the open door and Holbrook tied and gagged. They rush towards him, disregarding his attempts to warn them of the ambush.
    As they reach him they hear the sound of guns cocked.
    “Alright boys, put your toys down and play nicely.” Athen warns them, having the upper hand.

    Q: Do they attack?
    A: No
    Q: Do they draw?
    A: No

    The men are caught by surprise and turn to face their ambushers, but don’t draw their weapons, fearing for their lives.
    “Is this what I see true? My eyes aren’t failing me? Certainly I thought my ears where failing me when the Captain told me about you. Have you gone out of your mind completely Smarte? Kidnapping a city official?” The colonel yells from the hall outside.
    “Found him in the sewers kissing some goblin cheeks. He confessed. Your name came up.” She replies from inside.

    I’m a bit indecisive about the tools to use right now. I could do a behavior check, but I’m gonna see what UNE gives first.

    Conversation mood: Guarded
    Bearing: Hostile, Destruction
    Focus: Future action

    Q: Does he threaten?
    A: Yes

    “You’re on a path to self destruction Athen. Your career is over, I hope not your life too. Put your gun down and I’ll make sure you get a psycheval. Avoid the court martial and all that crap. For old times sake.” Col. Faulkner threatens.
    “I sincerely had hoped that you were not involved, Colonel.” Athen says and shoots the men in the legs.

    Athen: Shooting (d10),+2: 8,4: Success: 13/6: Wounded

    Q: Does German follow her lead? (Likely)
    A: Yes

    German: Double tap: Shooting (d6),+3: 7: Success: 11/6: Wounded

    German also double taps the man he had at gunpoint, right on the leg. The two men drop screaming.
    “You’re done for Smarte!” The Colonel screams from outside.

    I think this is a breaking point for Smarte. She’s no killer, but she knows the threat Holbrook represents. She doesn’t want him to continue operating and he must pay for what he’s done so far.
    Yet she knows she can’t keep dragging him around as the latest events will turn her and Kennet into fugitives.
    It’s one of the cases where I won’t decide for my protagonist but I will roll a Spirit test. If she fails, she will execute Holbrook.

    Spirit (d6): 1,2: Failure

    Athen: Head Shot: Shooting (d10): 9,8: Success with a Raise: 14/5: Wounded. Holbrook is dead.

    Athen motions for Kennet to follow her outside from, jumping from the window, as the colonel may be overwatching the apartment exit.
    Before she does so, she takes a good look at the corrupt collaborator. She’s filled with all the suppressed emotions from the war. This man has betrayed all her sisters and brothers to make humanity safe again. Without thinking much, she puts a bullet in his head, right between the eyes.

    Q: Can they jump down?
    A: Exceptional Yes.

    At arms length from her apartment’s window there is the fire escape.
    They get out and make a run for German’s car. They have to escape Morieva and lay low.
    As the car flees to safe distance, Athen can’t shake the recent revelations from her head.
    “Hey partner.” German tells her. “We’ll figure it out. We’ll go to another city, find some support and expose these traitors.”
    “You’re right…partner.” She responds. Her gaze in the mirror, looking back.

    Okay. Time to close up the scene.
    Chaos Factor still at 6.
    Holbrook is removed from the Character List.
    All previous threads are closed.
    New threads: Escape Morieva, Expose Collaborators
    Athen and Kennet both get the Wanted Hindrance.

    Q: Does the Escape from Morieva warrant it’s own scene?
    A: No

    I’m gonna do a Zoomed out scene of the escape.
    Kennet: Streetwise (d6): 3: Failure
    Athen: Stealth (d6): 5,4: Success

    So, they don’t switch vehicles or find any support from the underground, but they manage to lay low, avoiding highways and get out of Morieva.

    I’ll be closing the session and season here. I’m going to give Athen an Advancement: Marksman. I’m also going to make German a Wild Card.


    Session Summary

    I found this session to be so interesting! Even though at some times I felt like I was circling around the same obstacle, without managing to pinpoint it, in the end the reason was clear.
    The threat was revealed to be much bigger than anything Athen could have faced at once.
    And what better way to close up the season, than with the bad guys winning, and darkness taking a piece of my protagonist’s soul!
    I really enjoyed the convo that was driven by the Behavior Check, and in general found MV2 to be so much faster and streamlined than core Mythic GME.
    Overall Mythic really held its ground and did what it was meant to: provide a coherent story structure upon which to run my adventure. I’ll definitely be using it in the future, or a mix/hack of it.

    Season Summary

    This story started with a lot of questionmarks, and as it went onwards it failed many times to provide the necessary drive. I’ve used several different tools, but due to a wrong approach based on the situation, it kept failing.
    Success (from a solo RPG perspective) came with the use of Mythic, which I was avoiding, due to my preference for a Player Driven approach.
    Keeping an open mind is important when trying out solo tools. I found out that I shouldn’t constrain myself depending on what I think I might like.
    I’m leaving the first season of A Monster’s Bounty with a nice feeling, and I look forward to picking it up again later!

     
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