Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The Eyes of a Child - 28 Feb

With three of us in attendance and a late start it seemed like a short turn around was best. We played Shadowrun and used example characters from the rulebook. We had about two hours of play time. Surely all of these time saving measures would allow that to stretch an amazing span of game time! Surely.

(Spoiler: 5 minutes and 6 seconds - mostly game setting and rule review)


  • Emmy as Beanna - a tough-as-nails Mercenary who's even bigger than her gun! (But just so)
  • Triften as "Quicksilver" - a combat mage who would prefer not to give a name.


As a favor to Chandra, Quicksilver gets the team to talk to an unfamiliar Mr. Johnson. The Johnson lays out a simple pickup job. The daughter of a corporate exec has gone missing. Corp intel places her in a warehouse in the ghoul slum south of town. Current information points to a Mage of some kind holed up with the shambling horde for unknown reasons. It is presumed that the young girl is going to play some kind of role in ritual sorcery targeting the exec. Mr. Johnson's employers would prefer that not happen.

Given that the slum is best left off the mind of the public, Mr. Johnson would prefer you keep things quiet. Just get in, grab the girl and return her safely to the pick up spot. You can recognize her by her naturally purple eyes. You have until the end of the weekend to get her into the woman's bathroom at the Monstrous Bean coffee shop on 23rd and Rol'lh Ave.


The team starts on the side of the Rt 69 Expressway - the only way from the city to the southern DMZ and on to Tulsa. Traffic is low this evening, but what there is is fast. Beanna opens the way to a decrepit access ladder spanning the 200 or so feet to the slums below. In preparation for the uglies, Quicksilver starts sustaining an Armor spell on his shiel^M^M^M^M^Mpartner. Beanna moves quickly and quietly down. Quicksilver ends up taking just under 5 minutes to make his way down. As he went he managed to cause part of it to crash into the slum below. These are professionals people.

One the ground, the team took stock of things. Lots of rubble. Check. Giant rats. Check. Large cinder block and steel building with windows too high up for the dwarf? Perfect. Quicksilver failed at detecting enemies in the area, but did manage to give himself a splitting headache.

At least partially in response to Beanna "wondering" if she could climb on the mage without interrupting his spell casting too much, Quicksilver checked out the building through the windows. The whole place was abandoned. It looked like a one-time assembly line of some kind, but after a dose of fire bombing. Being adventurers our heroes guess that this shell of a building must contain Interesting Secrets (tm).

At the decision to continue, Beanna whips out her better half (by mass) and charges "gung-ho" around the building. Ever the team player, Quicksilver moves "with trepidation" slightly behind her. As Beanna rounds the corner, Quicksilver's Mission Manager Metrics clock passes 05:00 minutes. This brings us to that other 6 seconds I spoiled above.

--Scene Change (this part wasn't in the game)--

After a long six hours in the service line Fred was more than ready for break time. It didn't even matter that the rations had run out. Sure, he was hungry. But after toiling for this long, even a shambling mound of endurance will settle for a smoke break. Charles wouldn't even mind lending him one of his Green Goon flesh flavored cloves.

The last year had been rough for Charles. After the change his wife Jenna had been supportive. She would joke that they could set up a new diet fad. But then she started going to that church. Suddenly he was an abomination. His urges, even if he didn't act on them, were a violation of the natural order. His children couldn't be safe around him. And he knew he had to leave.

Things were rough in the slum. "Real" eats were hard to come by. The graveyard near by helped, but Charles didn't like jerky back when he ate the kind made out of beef. It was moments with new friends, like smoking with Fred, that made things seem bearable.

"So she asks me if the dress makes her look fat. 'I can't see bitch! Ghoul, remember?' fuck man."

Both men laugh and begin to light their cigarettes. When ghouls laugh, what slim lips they have disappear and their large jaws and misshapen teeth become all that is visible. They look kind of like flesh eating zombies. Which, to be fair, is not that far off. If you don't know any ghouls it can be scary - and surprising.

Just then Fred saw the second dwarf in his life. He thought this was very odd, given that the first one was earlier the same day. Also odd was that this one was aiming a large assault rifle at him and practically humping it.

-- Scene Change (back to the game) --

Our heroes turn the corner to find two ghouls, whom we will refer to as "Fred" and "Charles" even though the players have no knowledge of this. Fred and Charles are surprised by our shadowrunners. Quicksilver is surprised by Fred. Beanna saw all of this coming.

As our first 3 second turn begins, the cigarette falls from Charles's mouth. Fred manages to begin mouthing "...the fuc-" before completely unsuppressed gun fire begins. Quicksilver draws his sub-machine gun and fires a burst that splatters into Charles's chest. The burst fire from Beanna's assault rifle lights up the block and turns Fred's head into something resembling an explosive melon filled with teeth just in time to keep our entry at one f-bomb. As pieces of the building next to him fly through the air, Charles screams in surprise and horror.

Can anyone foresee how the next 3 seconds are going to go?

Beanna decides that she will give Charles the same treatment his smoking buddy got. Before she could pull the trigger, Quicksilver let loose with a Mana Bolt. Charles had never seen magic first hand. Unfortunately for Charles, having the raw energy of the Astral Plane ground into your body is not ranked high on the list good first magic experiences - although it is a nice visual effect for those not being rent apart. With a very loud, and very wet, sound Charles collapses against the wall of the building. His arm looks wrong - even for a ghoul. His rib cage does not have a uniform volume. His breathing is clearly labored. On the plus side, this has stopped that horrible screaming. As Charles hits the ground, Beanna evens out the shape of his chest the only way she knows how.

Quicksilver and Beanna stop to consider how anyone could think that "do it quietly" was a reasonable line item for a work order.

As his consciousness fades, Charles reflects on how this is his second worse day ever. The only salvageable bit is that Jenna won't have to worry about talking to him in front of the children anymore.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Noah's Game: February 21st

  • Tanya as Lulabelle, a half-elven sorceress with an owl, and she's not afraid to use it.
  • John as Kikow !!(pronounced 'click-click'), a gnomish barbarian. Long on passion, short on range.
  • Jake as Böbō, the dwarven barbarian and only returning character. Might berserk from afar.
  • Emmy as Droso, a (male) gnome cleric. Rides a dog well.
  • Triften as Hands, a human rogue. Occasionally has the feeling that others in the party are out to get him.
  • Sean as Vindo, a half-orc monk. Enjoys insulting Kikow in Orcish.

Also With
  • Lt. Horowitz, the Unfortunates dispatcher. He's got a no-nonsense haircut. Whatever that means.
  • Bella, Lulabelle's trusted familiar. Quite fond of mice, rats, and other vermin.
  • Charles Van der Schmidt and Iggy Rodriguez, a pair of Monstrous Scorpions on the run, and with nothing left to lose. Or so they thought.

Pregame: The party were all recruited into the Unfortunates, and arrived in the city less than a week ago, except for Böbō. The date is Grunfast, Grune 16th, Year of the Evil, Evil Monkey.

Horowitz summons the party to tell them that bounty season has begun. Starting today, there is a two thousand gold bounty on scorpion tails (of 6 feet or longer). The bounty is offered regularly by the Alchemists guild, presumably for ingredients. Horowitz doesn't have a posting for the party, but advises them to take advantage of the bounty while it lasts. Bounty season also marks the end of the trial period for all new Unfortunates, meaning that combat rates will be going up, but that the party will no longer be getting special rates on healing from Rothgab's temples.

The party decides to go after some bounty cash, and heads for the Unfortunates' gate. There is a cluster of merchants by the gate. Vindo buys a long pole from one of them.

The party exits the city through the Unfortunates' gate into the desert, Böbō upon his pony, Kikow upon his attack pig, and Droso on his riding dog. There are tracks of other hunters heading in various directions, the majority going south. The party heads south as well. After a little while, Lulabelle sends Bella ahead to scout for scorpions. Bella leads the party south-southwest, where they come upon a pair of monstrous scorpions sunning themselves on a rock.

Kikow leads the charge, jumping off his pig, and running full pell down the dune. Vindo and Hands follow behind, but hold their distance. Lula, Böbō, and Droso set up a position on top of the dune, and

Böbō shoots Hands in the back by accident. The scorpions jump off the rock. One attacks Kikow, but is unable to hit him. Lulabelle shoots a succession of magic missles into the scorpions, weakening them severely, and Droso casts "Heat Metal" on Böbō's arrows to increase their potency. The other scorpion overwhelms Vindo while Hands flanks the first and attacks it.

Böbō continues shooting into the melee, while Droso rides her dog down to the fight, and does a ride-by healing on Vindo, bringing him back to the brink of consciousness. Kikow, in his beserker rage, misses the scorpion at first, and attacks Hands. Hands pulls back. The party manages to kill the scorpions, and Droso finishes reviving Vindo.

The party chops off the scorpions' tails and other bits, and drags them back to Rothgab, where they collect their bounty of four thousand gold, which they split evenly. Vindo and Hands buy healing from Droso at half the market rate, and the party disperses.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Call for Character Concepts

I am prepping for a game. I am not defining much of anything at the moment. Could everyone please send me a character concept? They may be from any rpg genre or time period.

Each concept should include:
  • A name and physical description: "who is your character?"
  • A description of background and activities: "where is your character?"
  • A description of general desires: "where is your character going?"
  • A description of abilities and possessions: "what is your character?"
This is meant to be a dialogue, so expect this to go back and forth. Once we've settled on things, then either your or I will make a posting describing them. That will probably be after I make a posting about the game concept. I have one, I promise.

While not required, it might be useful to make use of this character creation worksheet that I like from Black Shield Gaming:
It also might be a good idea to keep Burning Void's guide to character concepts in mind - not that I'm opposed to people using stereotyped characters, but you should at least do it on purpose.

For those who remember anything about their Shadowrun characters, you may feel free to use them (assuming you can remember enough to fill in character concepts appropriately).

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Triften's Game: Session n+2

The party regroups outside of Portsmouth and follows the coastal road north through the night. In the early hours, they are attacked by a few lean and hungry looking wolves. Terrance screams a lot. Terrance gets chewed on a lot. Not in that order. Jared sings.

The party decides to skin the wolves and, despite no party member having any real tanning skill, manages to do a halfway decent job. Wanting to stop being covered in wolf's blood, Terrence wanders into the woods, in the middle of the night, with no survival skills, to find a stream or spiring to wash up in. He makes his way to running water and cleans up, then realizes that he has absolutely no idea which way leads back to the carts. He enacts plan B: Curling into the fetal position and sleeping until morning.

Stetta notices Terrence's absence and, with the twins, wanders off into the woods looking for Terrence. They find Terrence and discover that they too are lost. While pondering their predicament, a strange mote of light floats through the forest towards them. It seems to drift towards the closest person and, after some weaving and dodging, it floats into Stetta's head. Stetta blacks out and regains conciousness a few minutes later with a strange lump of crystal/glass in her mouth. The lump is clear except for a small shining speck in the middle. The lump is dubbed the "tongue baby".

The twins try to wander back towards the carts and instead become lost somewhere else in the woods. Terrence returns to plan B and, when Stetta tries to join him, he enacts "plan B over there... where you aren't." Eventually the two fall asleep and are able to make their way out of the woods come morning. The twins return to the carts exhausted after having wandering around all night.

Meanwhile, Holostarchander stays with the carts, wipes his hands off, and gets a good night's rest in his bed.

After changing hands for a bit for people to look at it, the tongue baby eventually returns to Stetta's possession.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Noah's Game: January 31st


* John as Rathnor, a half-orc paladin. His people are not your people.
* Triften as Arden, a human paladin of law. Law. Not Good.
* Sean as Rob, a half-orc rogue. Weighs in at several hundred pounds, not counting the bag of cod.
* Emmy as Cinnamon "Buns" McCabe, a gnome bard. This former stripper can use her skills to distact and delight.

Also With

* Lt. Horowitz, the as-yet undescribed Unfortunates dispatcher. A little bit shouty, when stressed.
* Guy in a chair. Don't get too attached to him.

With Appearances By

* Spanky and Jessica, ninja Unfortunates.
* Gladwell, an occasionally effective Unfortunate mage.


Pregame: The party were all recruited into the Unfortunates, and arrived in the city less than a week ago. The last game session took place two days ago, making today Slausengot, Grune 15th, Year of the Evil, Evil Monkey.

The party is summoned to see Lt. Horowitz. He is in the midst of dispatching them for another escort mission when his badge starts glowing. He uses it to trace a door in the air, and then rushes the party through to another location in the Rothgab. Once they arrive, the party notices a "tear in the air", glowing pure white.

Soon, other Unfortunates appear on the scene, including Spanky, Jessica, and Gladwell. Apparently, this is an unauthorized portal into the city. Horowitz tells Spanky and Jessica to track down anyone who has already come through, and Gladwell to lock down the portal. Then, he tells the party they will be going through the portal, to see if there's anyone worth trading with on the other side, as procedure requires. The party is told that their badges should let them through Gladwell's lock on the portal.

The party goes through the "tear" and emerges in a dark room. Cinnamon notices some torches in sconces on the wall, and pointes them out to the rest of the party. Arden lights one up, so that he can see. The room is finished stone, with three doors leading out. On this side, the portal is pure black, sucking in light from all around it.

There are three doors out of the room. At 6 o'clock is the portal. At 9 o'clock is a door of decayed wood, covered in moss. At 12 o'clock is another door, the same size as the first, but in good condition. At 3 o'clock is another door, also in good condition, but smaller. Rob checks for traps on the 3 o'clock door, and the party goes through.

On the other side of the door is a stone corridor that goes about 40 feet and then turns left. After the turn is another door. Rob checks for traps again, and doesn't find anything, and the party deliberates about what to do. After a little while, some of them hear muffled noises on the other side of the door, and they go in.

In the room is a man tied to a chair. There's also some other furniture, including a desk in the corner, and another door on the other side of the room. The man is bound and gagged. Rathnor searches him and finds a key.

When they ungag him, the man says some others tied him up and went past him towards where the party came from. He tells the party they're in the city of Tharn. The party decides to unbind him, and Rob and Rathnor go to investigate the other door. On the other side, they find a spiral staircase. Rob skulks up it, while Rathnor waits at the bottom, after Rob tells him his armor is too loud.

After a few minutes, the man who was in the chair starts making noises and hunching over. He changes into a werewolf, and attacks Arden. Rathnor hears the noise and comes in, but Cinnamon puts the man to sleep with a dance. They tie the man back up.

Meanwhile, Rob has gotten to the top of the stairs, where he finds a door. He checks the door for traps, and, finding none, heads back to get the rest of the party.

Before he can get back though, the man in the chair wakes up. Rathnor and Arden take turns hitting him in the head while Cinnamon hits him in the shin, but he eventually breaks his bonds. They manage to knock him out before he can do much damage, and Arden delivers the finishing blow.

Rob gets back, and leads the party up the stairs, where they find the door is locked. Rob makes a mental note to check for this in the future. The key Rathnor took off the dead werewolf doesn't work. While Rob picks the lock, a shadow peels off the wall and attacks Rathnor. Rob finishes picking the door and rushes the party through, but the shadow follows. The party finds themselves in what looks like a cobblestone alley. It's nighttime.

The rest of the party attacks the shadow, and Rob ducks back through the door, closing it behind him. The door clicks and locks automatically behind him, and Rob immediately sets about unlocking it. Cinnamon casts a light spell on the shadow, but it is unaffected. Between the three of them, Rathnor, Arden and Cinnamon manage to finish off the shadow, but they are seriously weakened.

Rob re-unlocks the door. The party hears noises and baying coming their way, like a pack of werewolves. They high-tail it back through the door, letting it close and lock behind them, and then run back downstairs and through the rooms to the portal, which they go through.

They find themselves in the desert outside of Rothgab. They go back into the city, and head back to the city's side of the portal, where they find Horowitz. They tell Horowitz what they found. Horowitz yells at Gladwell for screwing up the lock spell and bouncing them, and tells him to shut the portal down. Horowitz explains that Rothgab has had this kind of problem before with Tharn, calling it "attempting to set up improper trade relations." He sends the party back to headquarters. The party collects their pay, and finds healers to help with their wounds.