Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Lesserton Pub Crawl

Originally uploaded by ntcrwler

Lesserton's much seedier than is represented in the picture at right, but that's kind of the idea.

Strothbogie and Brigitta have lost their spell books. They were stolen. Strothbogie has a couple contacts with some possible leads. First, another young magician, an associate at the Platonic Order says he heard that someone, an elf, had come by trying to sell two books to the order, and had sold one for 300 gold pieces. And his friend Rusty at the Vanhalla, who had helped him in the past, promised to be on the lookout for the books. Come to think of it, he didn’t really have much information, but just questions. How much would a book like that be worth? Those things aren’t like cursed are they?

I don’t know if Strothbogie will find his books, but he enjoyed having money to spend looking for them.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

look again

Although the term “role-playing game” works well enough, players’ contributions in a good D&D game are not limited to playing the role of a particular character. They shape the plot, and, to varying degrees create the plot, choosing which objectives to pursue, or at least how. Relative to the referee, players’ contribution to setting is small, but it shouldn’t be non-existent.
For example, in the more recent Lesserton & Mor game, the party met a new PC named Isden. Because we met each other inside the ruins of Mor, it was a little awkward at first, with Isdn trying to hide in the shadows and Strothbogie poking him with a stick to see if he was real. So when the rats attacked, the rest of the party took refuge in the illusionary fire, and Isden fended for himself.
According to the referee, Isden was in a “ruined building.” Isden looked more closely and suggested that : (1) the roof might be intact (2) that there were holes in the roof that would allow access to someone inside and (3) that there would be some wooden support beams that he could use to climb up. I don’t know whether the referee rolled some dice or had to think about how these three ideas meshed with his own impressions of the setting. But it worked out ok for Isden and he got away from the rats. His player didn’t really create or change the setting, he just suggested details that seemed to fit with what he already knew.

Overgrown fountain
Originally uploaded by JMSphoto

Later, we returned to the task of cleaning the sacred fountain. The problem wasn’t stirges anymore; it was the plants growing in it that tried to strangle people. And again, we looked more closely at those ruined buildings. Was there a beam that could be removed safely, set on fire, and be thrust into the tangle of weeds? Yes. It didn’t work exactly according to our plan, but again players and referee collaborated over details that wouldn’t have seemed important to the referee while working alone.

On the road to Quitokai

Originally uploaded by jadeeey

The party traveled several days through the forest. Sometimes monotonous, the journey was generally peaceful. They happened upon a deserted guardhouse and found a cache of weapons. And they hunted monkeys to supplement their rice cakes and steamed scorpion.

Early one morning, Gwinch noticed that Kishi had left her backpack open and that there was a scroll sticking out of it. It wasn't a magic scroll, but a message. Although the full meanng was ambiguos, the words "assasinate" and "Gwinch" in the same sentance gave him some alarm. Kishi ran away, and the rest of the party traveled without her.

After a couple days, they left the forest behind and traveled through burnt grains fields and ruined rice paddies. In a stand of bamboo, they were ambushed by villagers. One member of the party, Deng, was local the areas, and negotiated a truce. The villagers were suspicious and warned the party to not press any further but wait for word from the elders.

When the elders arrived, accompanied by 50 armed villagers, they questioned the party. What are you doing here? Gwinch explained that he had discovered renegade members of his monastery were conducting a slaving operation and that he had come to put a stop to it. The villagers had indeed experienced this problem first-hand. It seemed that both monks and former soldiers were part of the operation. When the party learned that the slavers had a hideout in the mountains somewhere between the forest and the burned grain fields, they agreed that they would investigate. The elders allowed one of their warriors a woman named Orya to go with them. And they took the wounded sohei back to their village so they could recover and be their hostage.

Although the party had a crude map, they had some difficulty in find the way to the slavers' hideout. in their exploration, along a stretch of the remains of an ancient highway, they met a small group of soldiers, claiming they were there to arrest Gwinch. Inevitably, the soldiers or brignads were killed. The party found the path that they believed led to the hideout, but decided to go Quitokai (Orya's village) to rest and plan before making their sortie. Their fight with the soldiers was taken as partial proof of their sincerity and the party was allowed to stay in the village.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

mission from the emperor

While Gwinch was talking to his companions (including one relatively new PC, Gunjar the shaman, and one brand-new PC, Kreppu-Sen, a bushi from Zipang) about his plans for hunting down the slavers in Khanbaliq, Kishi came to him with some news. He had been "requested" by the Emperor to command a small army and go on a special mission.

Gwinch accepted. He made some attempts to do some last-minute investigation, but didn't get a good opportunity to discover anything substantive.

Kish provided little in the way of details. There was a problem in one of the Southern Provinces. First with savages, then with the Governor, then with a General sent to help to Governor. The Khan wanted the party to track down both the General and the Governor, both of whom are considered likely traitors.

Over a month, the party traveled with the army to the southwest corner of the empire, fidning increasing surly peasant along the way. As they approached the border, large parts of the army deserted, and at the border, the army's commander left the part on their own, telling them only to head south and try to pick up the trails of Kawabi and Goyat in the Kumandang Valley.

The party spent a day traveling in the forest, at first enjoying the change from being part of a large army and passing through broken farmland populated by angry farmers. That night they were attacked by a giant scorpion. Relying on the spells of Kishi and Saisho, cooked it nicely and had a nice feast.

Laying Low
Originally uploaded by Furryscaly