Friday, 20 November 2015

White Box Hangouts 5: The Blue Otter Cult

In the terrace district Ram, the thief, picked the pocket of a victorious scorpion trainer in the Bell and Scorpion tavern (recovering 30 silver pennies and some minced hedgehog.)

Was the drunk old ex sewer watchman really telling the truth about the white alligators in the sewers? A white alligator skin could be worth a few silver pennies to the right patrician and a live specimen would fetch a decent price on the bizarre pets market.

So, willing to try their hand at anything that pays the PCs became sceptical alligator hunters and headed into the sewers.

They encountered the Sewer Watch. They battled cannibal mole men. The party's fighter, Pahn, coming so close to death that seasoning was applied to his unconscious body. Fortunately Vayne the bard stepped in with one of his many natural twenties. Decapitation and the hundred cut method proving the end for two of his adversaries.

No XP was awarded for puns.

Finding the secret idol of the Otter God, He Who is Both Furry and Yet Ferocious, they immediately attacked his cultists. Outnumbered, things were going ok until Ram took a sacrificial dagger to the chest on another Nat 20 and died. The cultists exclaimed this as a sacrifice to their God but her dying words were "I am not a virgin...."

Furious further natural twentying from Vayne and consistent spear work from Pahn left the remaining three cultists with no option but to surrender.

The cult leader unmasked and proclaimed herself an ex-cultist. She now wished to side with obviously superior mercenaries, and conveniently turned out to be a mystic and also Ram's player's new character. As a token of good faith she lead her new compatriots to the cult's hoard of otter themed silver jewellery.

They returned to the house of Mercenaries, Sellspears and Blades for Hire to fence the silver and divvy up the spoils and XP.

Friday, 13 November 2015

White Box Hangouts 4: The Hallowed Eve

I wrote a summary of Wednesday night's game but Paul C who plays Alvis the Mystic posted this to G+ in the style I used for previous write ups and it was better than mine so I stole it...

Not the Lord of Sorrows but suitable.

Paul wrote:

"Just played in another awesome session of the Grim North with monkiest2 as GM. Truly amazing adventure with cheese magic, choking mist, "teachers" looking for children,gloomy monolinths, a bard who is always right, a thief who can read lips, creepy children, dimensionally unstable demons, true love, a terrifying chase through the streets, a haunting spectre of a horseman and reaching HQ in the nick of time. All around class session of thrills and chills aplenty."

Some notes about the session:

Cheese magic. Tyromancy had been bandied about on G+ earlier in the day as useful piece of obsolete vocabulary, being a method of divination by reading signs in the coagulation of cheese. I liked it and immediately stole this as the means by which the Old Woman could introduce some lore about the various supernatural threats of the Feast of Hallowed Eve. Not least The Lord of Sorrows, who would arrive at midnight on his blood red horse to claim those still on the streets of the city, deemed to be given over to the realm of despair.

The Rolling of 3. During the Hallowed Eve the number three is sacred to The Lord of Sorrows. Anytime a three was rolled by any of the players on any die, he was drawn closer to the material realm. With most of the rolls in White Box being d20 and d6 there were quite a lot of natural threes rolled, eight in total. This resulted in the premature summoning of The Lord of Sorrows himself and the characters having to run for their very souls.

The tapping on the walls of reality. On the Hallowed Eve the walls of reality grow thin and horrors from the Outer Dark try to force their way into the world. This manifested as the sound on metal tapping on glass "Tap, tap, tap" which the PCs could hear every time things went quiet. Answering the tapping in kind, on a black marble monolith as it happened, resulted in a whispered voice saying "Let me in."

The Girl with No Eyes. Encountering a child with her eyes gouged out is just creepy, especially when she keeps disappearing. Her rag doll that the PCs were in possession of for a bit also had no eyes.

The battle. When Vayne the Bard invited the eldritch hordes of the Outer Dark to "Come on in" I rolled on the d6 random least demons table I had prepared for the game. They faced six floating ammonites with glowing green tentacles and black shells composed the twisted, fossilised, shrunken faces of the screaming dead. These were eventually defeated although Silent Silvie the Acrobat rolled appallingly, Vayne the Bard would have been horrifically injured if not for Alvis's mystic healing and Ram the Thief nearly died. Reduced to negative one hit points she was on her way out.
Vayne: "There must be some way I can stop her dying"
Me: "How exactly are you going to do that?" Knowing that there were no mechanical options open to the party.
Vayne: "True love's kiss."
Me: "Ha ok, I'll allow it." And so she did not die.

The session was planned around several independent supernatural threats which were then inexpertly interwoven with a simple fetch quest to recover some lost children in a park. I was pleased with how it turned out, good players making the game very enjoyable to run and they didn't even encounter the Tatterwitch and her pumpkin demon, any of the soul burned Black Magicians or the Cold Dead. Maybe next Hallowed Eve...