PSYCHOLOGICAL WEIGHT IN SLOT-BASED ENCUMBRANCE: The burden of magic & sin

WHAT IS BURDEN?
Ultra Violet Grasslands (now ENnie nominated!) by Luka Rejac is a wonderful book that distracts you so much with beautiful evokative art that you might miss some of the awesome rules tucked away in there. One of my favorites is below: SPELLS ARE INVENTORY TOO

Image

A character in UVG can carry about 10 significant items. So spells can take up slots just like any other item, tool, or weapon. Spells carry a psychic weight which encumbers the character. And this makes sense in my experience. One can be so occupied with a problem that it literally weighs you down. But riffing on that, why stop at magic? 

Magic items could also take up extra encumbrance due to the psychological weight of carrying them despite their size- like Frodo and the Ring at the end of LotR. Elric's Stormbringer might be another. A good candidate might be the Deck of Many Things- just a deck of cards, but the weight of its potential fate-changing power is great.

More mundane items could do the same thing. For instance, if your PC is carrying the decapitated head of a ruler. A head might take up 1 slot, but the psychological weight could make it greater. Extending this further, what about sins or breaking of oaths? 

Every time the PC sins or goes against some aspect of their background, oath, or pledge- they have slots taken up. It's an additional tangible way the player can understand and experience their choice without resorting to taking negatives on to-hit and skill rolls.

This I think is quite interesting.

EDIT: Also would be good for "obligations" the PCs might pick up. Non-trivial things they know they should do but aren't getting around to doing. This might be particularly useful in a hex crawl.

EDIT2: Could also be used for curses like lycanthropy or ghoulification. Each aspect of the curse would be listed as its own set of 1-3 slots. Again representing the burden of the knowlege the PC carries about thier inner desires.

SO HOW DO YOU GET RID OF BURDEN?
Well, if you can't get rid of it you can make it smaller via compartmentalization. Options include:
  • Complete your obligation (removal)
  • Seek holy intervention to pardon your guilt (removal)
  • Undertake a quest (removal)
  • Wear an object or talisman or keepsake (compress from X slots to 1 slot) but NPCs know your sin
  • Give in to the desire or curse (compresses from X slots to 1 slot) but DM controls your actions
SUMMARY- I think I really like this idea. It is a way to add player choice in how PCs manifest and deal with psychological guilt/curses/desires/transgressions/sin etc. It promotes its exploration without putting it at the center of the game. And it has a real meaningful (but not intrusive) game impact.

TREASURE: GP = XP; but value come in a lot of forms



Cyril Van Der Haegen is the artist
of one of the best 5e images

GENERAL NOTES

This is some of my musing about how I like to do XP in my BX games. Two other great ways: This article by Ben L. of Through Ultan's Door fame. And the below tweet.

Who the "crown, local lord, and guild" might be will change according to the lands the PCs are in. What follows is human-centric, but one can (and should) imagine a Fey lord will want something completely different as would a Death Knight or Ghoul Guilds.

Players might raise objections to a lot of the below and want a better arrangement. That's absolutely fine and expected. Remember (1) In accordance with GP = XP, they will receive XP for "gross" treasure recovered (pre-tax); (2) only the value they receive in GP is taxed; (3) If they want a better deal they should argue using the in-game fiction.

WHAT IS VALUABLE?


Flora & Fauna
Biles from animals
Nectars from plants
Salts from minerals

Material
Art/Iconography
Books
Rare Raw Goods

Gems & Jewelry
Gems- raw, imperfect, perfect, cut; type associated with a metaphysical/mythic property
Jewelry- magical individual pieces or sets that project power/honor an event
Candleholders, cups, silverware, china- denotes status



WHO WANTS IT?

Professional organizations will want raw materials to manufacture various goods. Biles, Nectars, Salts, Cloth, Gems, and Rare Raw Goods.

Religious organizations will want artifacts lost to the church, the locations, and or bodies of important figures. They will also want to capture the same items of religions antithetical to their beliefs for destruction. Art, Books, Cloth, Statues, Icons, Emblems, and Weapons.

Nobelity will value display above all and want to track the latest trends. Art, Jewelry, "Perfect" Gems, Luxury Objects, and Weapons.

Illicit or Secret Organizations will want items of power that align with their agenda: Books, Weapons, Artifacts, and Magic Items.

WHO CONTROLS WEALTH EXCHANGE?

Crown- will take 30% at the door

Local Lord- will take 20% at the door

Guilds- will take 25% of any sale within the confines; 10% from members (membership esoteric)


HOW TO SUBVERT CONTROL OF  EXCHANGE?

Develop standings and status among those who want items and control wealth exchange 

Thieves guild- will smuggle and help you avoid all the above for 25%

Fences will sell goods quickly, quietly, and/or maximum value (pick two). Not quickly means PCs will have to wait (one complete adventure maybe); not quietly means PCs will draw attention from Illicit or Secret Organizations; not max value means PCs will get less gold.

WHAT CAN BE DONE WITH IT?

Fighters: Building a castle and raising troops takes gold, but before that it requires status, and for that, you must look the part and been seen as nobility.

Thief: The guild will require payment, but status in the guild will require increasingly more daring heists and increasingly rare items.

Clerics: Tithes and shrines must be built. Also, holy symbols made from various material symbolically connect to the gods will increase spell casting and the chance of miracles.

Wizards: Spell components can increase casting power, duration, and prevent spell slot loss. The component must have a symbolic, mythological, or alchemical connection to the spell being use. Each component takes up 1 slot of encumbrance as it has to be preserved and easy to reach.

Elves: Similar to Fighters and Wizards, but value magic items above all else.

Dwarves: Much the same as Fighters, but value relics and symbols like Clerics. Gems prized, pearls hated.

Halflings: Like Guilds, value rare and raw goods. Value books, fine cloth, luxury goods, but gifts given above else as a symbol of experience and community.

WHAT ARE SOME EXAMPLES?

The wizard, Mayfly, is trying to work out how to bypass a lake horror that guards the bridge to Black Keep. Mayfly decides to create two potions of Flesh to Stone but add bile from a cockatrice and salt from the ground marble of a medusa-made statue

EFFECT: Since Flesh to Stone gives a save throw, the DM rules the inclusion of the bile and salt causes that save to be made at a -4. 

The thief, Fetch, wishes to receive divine protection against misfortune on her next sojourn to the Black Keep. Fetch prays at the temple of the Crow, god of the Wheel of Fortune & thieves & Kenku, and offers a jade ring and a ruby ring (both stolen). Jade is associate with the lost Serpent empire and ruby is associated with the heart.

EFFECT: The DM gives a positive sign to the thief (murder of crows swirls around them) and (secretly) gives them +4 to their next save (heart) vs. Poison (Serpent empire) roll from any source.

The fighter, Redd, has decided to entreat the local lord for the land around the Black Keep. After all no one is using it, what with all the death. They decide that because the lord is known for his strict adherence to protocol and formality, they will spend gold to: commission a new shield, clothing, and buy a quality horse & tack. Redd also brings a gift for the lord's high consort & seer: a book of astrology from the Black Keep.

EFFECT: Reaction roll is low: Because the fighter carries themselves in a manner befitting of a knight, the lord denies the land but agrees to confer a title on the fighter. However, they are approached later by the high consort, because of the gift, who has some information about the Black Keep.

The cleric, Fish, is concerned about the demons hold the throne room of The Black Keep. Fish decides to sanctify two bells in order to ring them when demons are speaking-- potentially breaking spells of corruption, lies, and charm. One pure silver bell is made from the silver rosary worn by the head Abbess (but Fish has to go on a quest in repayment) and the other two-handed great bell is made from the wood of a pulpit Fish saved from destruction.

EFFECT: Both bells are made of materials that reinforced the theme of Fish's diety. The DM rules the small one maybe be rung to remove a spell cast by a low-level demon. The larger, because its made from a pulpit, must be rung continuously but also the player of Fish must make sermons every round (CON check) to counteract a spell.


LAIR OF THE LAMB: At least 1/3rd of all PCs Escaped


A visual summary of the party's experience in Arnold K's Lair of the Lamb.
The players started with 9 PCs and ended with 3, plus the NPC, Akena, who they picked up in their escape from the clutches of the Lamb. One of my players did take some pretty extensive notes during the session and I'll have to get those on the blog at some point.

As a party, the players were very focused on getting out and generally did not spend too much time trying to find the various secrets. However, I was overjoyed when one of the players finally decided to eat the little green mushrooms they came across and received a vision from the god Shendormu.

The classes in italics above represent what each player picked once they leveled up from a 0-level to 1.

The Lair of the Lamb, I think, is a new classic in old-school gaming. It is based on a universal fear, being hunted in the dark by a monster, yet in the context of a highly interactable swords & sorcery setting which yields strong, strange rewards for player's who take a risk! The module demonstrates through play, how much players can do and have fun with 1d6 HP, a knife, a background, and a goal: escape. The dungeon revitalized.

In addition to a great module, Arnold as written fantastic DM advice, notes, and justification for choices in the module. This provides new DMs and those new to old-school play a solid foundation to understand the goals of the scene and how to ensure a good time. But he doesn't stop there, he has a section of advice for the players as well. Then to top it all off, the factions and setting a described juuust enough a DM can easily spin another 2-3 sessions out as the players move into the location were the dungeon is housed. Perfect. And as much as I love Tomb of the Serpent Kings, I think Lair of the Lamb pulls ahead. But play both- they are free and far better than 90% of what's out there.

THE LOST SERPENT KING: Goals, Feasts, and Classes



Related to this idea seed

Ruleset: B/X is easy, Bluehome for fun?

Goal
* Serpent King left many things untold and now suitors and debtors come to collect. PCs must seek out things in the Forest of Ynn before an allocated time (quest).
* Random table full of goals
* Each set of levels denotes seasons
* Suitors & Debtors: The Dead, The Suitors, The Seliee, The Unseliee, Star Emisary, The Elements (four winds, the sea), Demons & Devils.

Feast
* At the end of the quest, the PCs may tell of their deeds to gain more XP on top of the non-magical bounty they bring back to the castle
* Any unused magical items must be turned in to a particular faction to gain XP
* Carousing, Feasting, Duel, or Poetry

DM NOTE: I think the above is pretty strong. I don't know if the class stuff below matches it. Maybe the Half-children should just be the alternative classes in the Old-School Essentials.

Character Gen: 3d6 down-the-line

Character Class:
* Half-sibling (Fighter)
Chose:
- Animal head/human body- senses of that animal
- Animal body/human head- stats of that animal;
- Animal organs, but mostly human- the ability of that animal
- Monster abilities are 1/day

* Bearer of an intelligent weapon (Cleric/service of higher power)

* Errant Betrothed (Thief)
- Every level you are promised more fortune you can promise to others
- You are constantly pursued by your past

* Witch/Warlock (Magic-user)
- You can use poison
- You can make potions
- Use Druid spell list

* Shade (if dead)


MOONBASE BLUES: After-Action Report 2 of 2

 MOONBASE BLUES 

NOW on DTRPG!

Part I Here

<!-- Let's switch fonts again for fun-->
Characters
  • Marine Cmd. Dukes
  • Scientist: Archeology Ysuko
  • Scientist: Roboticist Iko
  • Teamster: Nips <!--NEW-->

OBSERVATORY: PCs are able to break away from the fight in OBSERVATORY now with 1.0 hr to go until the strange meteor researches its zenith. They decide to retreat back to SECURITY.

By this time our PCs meeting Nips who is a new player in our game. Born high, but brought low by scandal, dropped off to pay a debt, XXX demanded someone else carry her bags. On the plus side, PCs got a new loadout.

<!--It was interesting to me that the PCs did not go to the downed drop pod for extra supplies -->

GREENHOUSE & MED BAY: Because of the strange blue light coming over the horizon, the completely transparent done of the GREENHOUSE was going to prove a problem. All prior characters were already at Meteor Psychosis Stage 1. Further exposure would not be good. So the PCs decide to hit the floor and crawl on their stomachs. Halfway across the room, Nips is intercepted by two of the light-touched Beloved. Punches were thrown, eyes were gouged, and the PCs were about to make it to SECURITY.

SECURITY: Back through the barricade, but a check of the SECURITY interior revels on floating, giggling light-touched Beloved. Furthermore, the rising blue light reveals clear-epoxy filled holes in the dome that are letting in blue light.

Iko makes a fast break for the computer terminal to insert the emergency protocol card. But in his haste, Iko didn't properly protect his eyes from the blue Truth and was overtaken by Psychosis Stage 2, blackout, but kept inserting blue pens into his body.

Yusko seeing her friend endanger charges into the room only to be overcome by the blue Truth like Iko. Both now have Meteor Psychosis level 2. Yusko blacks out but grasps and scramble for any blue object- becoming increasingly stressed that no objects can be found.

Cmd. Dukes was able to push the blue-light deranged strange away from the group and secure the area. By that time, Nips had returned with the dropped loadout equipment.

Back to the GREENHOUSE & MED BAY: The group intends to travel back across to the GREENHOUSE then up the middle to the OBSERVATORY. It is here that Nips eats the strange fruit in the GREENHOUSE and while not succumbing to the effects of the Blue Truth, does gain an altered perception. 

<!--The player rolls a "0" & "00" on that save so I figure it would be nice to reward the player-->

Alas, the group's plans were cut short as they slithered by through the GREENHOUSE. The "beloved" captured Nips and Yusko and brought them to the OBSERVATORY for conversion by exposing them directly to the blue light via the telescope eyepiece.

<!--Forcing a person to look into the eyepiece immediately causes them to gain 2 levels of Meteor Psychosis-->

OBSERVATORY & GEOLOGY LAB: With the meteor at its zenith, things quickly collapse for the survivors. Surrounded by the blue-obsessed "Beloved", Nips tries to mimic there chants and speeches temporarily earning freedom. She then slinks off to put on a vac-suit without notice to try and escape outside. Iko who hid successfully in the GREENHOUSE has gone unnoticed. Also tries to slip on a vac-suit quietly and without notice (and training)...mostly gets things correct. 

Its then Cmd. Dukes swings into action with a two-pronged plan, his left & right fists, to help by charging the Blue Prophet! Hell breaks loose but Ysuko is able to slip away to don a vac suit too. No zero-G training so she thinks she did everything correctly...maybe.

OUTSIDE THE DOME: The truest of blue fills the landscape bathing it in Truth. Iko and Yusko both have their vac-suit hold seal despite not correctly adjusting it for fit. Nips' is perfect.

<!--I had each player roll a d10: Evens = suit put on correctly; Odds = seal is poor and they start venting oxygen-->

But unfortunately, it is not their physical being that each has to worry about-- for the Blue Truth streaming from the meteor overtakes their souls. All three undo their helmets, join hands, and widen their eyes to know the Truth. Because they have seen the light and it is good.

But Cmd Dukes only sees red! Red is the rage he feels at this terrible situation. Red is the blood from these blue freaks and the smashed head of the Prophet. Red is color that pours forth as he's torn apart in a rage by the remaining Beloved.

<!--To end off the final stand, I had the player roll a d10 and the result was the number of cultists he killed in the last stand each death narrated differently by the player-->

//END OF REPORT

CHARACTERS
  • Marine Cmd. Dukes (deceased)
  • Scientist: Archeology Ysuko (questionable)
  • Scientist: Roboticist Iko (questionable)
  • Teamster: Nips (questionable)



LAIR OF THE LAMB: An After Action Report of a Beautiful Funnel Dungeon by Arnold K

GOBLIN PUNCH's Arnold K put out LAIR OF THE LAMB, a 0-level funnel lovingly handcrafted to teach old-school thought and design. I was taken with it because I've always thought funnels are a great way to get new players used to character death, teach non-reliance on character abilities, and drive home survival as a good strategy. Plus, I don't see why DCC should get a lock on the funnel.

SPOILERS BELOW

My vision of the child-god of Vandoh

The Lair of the Lamb

Basics: The PCs start off dehydrated in the dark with no resources except a shared knife and the burlap sacks they were cut out of. The Lamb hunts them as they try to escape. Their first goal is to find water.

System: Originally written for Arnold's own GLOG, but I used BX D&D (1981). The modules include Appearance, Personality, and Profession tables which were used. I also added my own "Reasons your characters share this unfortunate fate?" table.

Three players and their party of 9 unfortunates- and why there are here:
1. Hini- athletic, unhinged graverobber- who was so devoted the Temple kidnapped her
2. Kat- beautiful, scheming carpenter- whose roving eye offended the Betrothed
3. Hans- brutish, jocular baker- whose crime was impersonating a cleric
4. Regis- athletic, irate butcher- whose love is a crime
5. Tawny- brawny, cynical wet nurse- fated to make a bad mistake
6. Fritz- boney, scheming butler- loved by too many
7. Brandon- athletic, cautious poacher- whose poverty offended the tax collector
8. Don- delicate, formal architect- who drew the jade coin
9. Kay- pale, proud baker- loved by too many
"Your characters wake up in the pitch-black groggy, thirsty, and with stiff limbs...what do you do?"

1. BOWLS: PCs grope around in the dark deciding if they should rescue more of the people trapped here or if they should just take their extra burlap sacks. The Lamb interrupts them following the arguing of Fritz & Brandon. All PCs are able to pass DEX checks to move around the Lamb which feasts on a burlap sacked occupant.

2. GOATS: The barn animal smells attracted the PCs across the hallway to the goats. They gathered one goat, removed the bells, and took a wooden bowl. The Lamb picked up their scent again, but the PCs heard it coming and ran to the #5 Landing. Oh, and Tawny being a wetnurse, decides to try and nurse her two other companions instead of finding water.

DM note: Sure! Its a very interesting use of a starting profession. I asked the player to roll under 1/2 CON to supply two otherwise it is just 1-- or none in the case of a CON check failure.

5. LANDING: PC who were thrown in here due to religious reasons investigated the steel doors on the northern wall ascertaining by the bas reliefs they were in The White Temple with the abhorrent child of Vandoh (The Lamb). They grab the torch off the wall (light!), the locked chest (heavy!), the gong and hammer (something!), and progress South to #6 Tumblers.

DM note: I tried to limit how much I asked players roll and instead tried to make them support actions/questions with their backgrounds and professions. If it fit: sure you know that or can do that.

6. TUMBLERS: On their way, they kick in the closet door to take a broom (could be used as a torch and another gong). At the mural of the four-handed fish, they fiddle with the tumblers and when the level is pulled Hini, with 1 HP, gets acid in the face. This PC try to fiddle with the tumblers again, but this time with one of the gongs over their heads. No acid, but wrong sequence still, and The Lamb arrives! Tawny charges The Lamb but the all but bitten in half. Half of the PCs are able to move past with a DEX check. The remains PCs push The Lamb back with torches.

DM note: The goat is still alive.

8. THE PIT: PCs meet Akina and take her into the party after she pleads for release. Through questioning, PCs ascertain that escape is to the East and the #9 Fountain is haunted.

9. THE FOUNTAIN: PC risked a trip to the fountain by pushing the goat in the room first and having it promptly succumb to the drowning spirit that haunts the room. That's enough for the PCs and they head back to The Pit to continue East.

DM note: The goat is dead. So The Lamb should be present at the fountain, but at this point they had encountered it rather recently so I thought I would give them a slight breather.

11. COMET MURAL: PCs first attempt to go East but hit the locked door. They pocket the sheep skull and head south to the #12 Mouth Mural.

12. MOUTH MURAL: PCs proceed to pull 1d4 teeth out of the mural for each of their groups. Then start moving south again to the #13 City Mural as they hear The Lamb. But a sacrifice is made! Hans decides to go back into the room and run out with the pole holding up the unstable ceiling. A DEX check is made...and...1 short! Hans is crush by the falling blocks right as he is about to make it out.

DM note: Second sacrifice the PCs made with their characters.

13. CITY MURAL: The PCs pause to briefly morn the death of their fellow captives. Akina pipes up and explains she used to come here is listen to the sights and sounds of the city. The smell of the outside draws the characters to investigate the crack to the south. However, as Fritz pushed through the crack, he was overcome by hoards of biting red spiders and is pulled out by Brandon. Meanwhile, Don investigates west #14 Sarcogphagus and Kat pushes east to the moldy door #16 Mold.

14. SARCOPHAGUS: The PCs briefly investigate the tomb, pushing the lid off and taking the two rings ($$$). They don't bother with investigating the crawl space to the north.

DM note: I was using a slightly earlier version of the Lair of the Lamb. This is changed in the new iteration of the document. Same for rooms 11, 12, & 13 I believe.

16. MOLD: PCs don't bother the mold and want even less to do with it once it starts shifting slightly in its sleep. They instead push on to the east to #18A Ledge.

18A. LEDGE: PCs investigate the room and, with Akina's help, ascertain the smashed structure in the middle is an old elevator. They find the rope and all climb up to the ledge above ending the game.

DM note: Yeah, I might have made this a little more difficult but I was ready to bring the game to a close at 2.5 hours. I thought they did a good job and enjoyed themselves. Certainly, they are ready for part two.

BODY COUNT
Hini- dead- acid
Tawny- dead- The Lamb
Kay- dead- The Lamb
goat- dead- drowning

The map of the area made with Hex Kit and the HPS tile kit.
The adventure takes place in the White Temple


MOONBASE BLUES: An After-Action Report 1 of 2

<!--Let's switch fonts to add to the sci-fi mood-->

 MOONBASE BLUES 

concept by D. Shugars
written by I. Yusem
art & layout by W. Denning

itch.co NOW!
DTRPG NOW!


BEGIN REPORT: The crew of the Skiff-class ship Sparrowhawk:

  • Marine Cmd. Dukes
  • Scientist: Archeology Ysuko
  • Scientist: Roboticist Iko
<!--All randomly generated by Saker Tarsos MOTHERSHIP character generator -->

Under the unscrupulous leadership of former corp-union smasher Cmd. Dukes, the three were charting a course to a small lunar facility, AZURE BASE, known in these parts for conducting some sort of clandestine geological work. Dukes was hoping for a quick snatch-and-grab of some valuable intel and a tidy payday.

The three awake in the Security station groggy. All have new clothes on, but only Ysuko has her duffle bag [laser cutter, hand welder, crowbar, body cam, laser cutter (!), mag boots, bioscanner, vacsuit, & other goodies]

<!--I'll try to be brief for each section -->

SECURITY: Automated AI clicks on to assign them AZURE BASE tasks including making the beds in HABITATION and to bizarrely look up in 4 hours. Player divide up equipment, download both FACILITY MAPS, and head to the GREENHOUSE.

<!--MOONBASE BLUES comes with a single page spread of the two interior maps for player use as an "in-game" object-->

GREENHOUSE & MED BAY (glass-domed): Players witness one figure being mutilated in the Auto-doc while a second "surgeon" conducts this grisly procedure. 

The figure in the Auto-doc has his cavity split open. Various blue painted mechanical parts are being put inside. The "surgeon" over seeing this butchery blue wires running through his head, neck, eyes, and mouth in a grisly halo.

Horrified by the butchery, Cmd Dukes tries to halt the process. Ysuko jumps in with the laser cutter. Meanwhile Iko explored the hydroponics and stole a tranq gun from another pair of strange figures. 

Their leader has both eyes replaces by prisms with blue paint seeping from the wounds.

All three characters fend off an attack and make for HABITATION. Iko hot-wires the door control shut and Ysuko curses her luck at poor laser-cutter handeling at point-blank range. 

HABITATION:Before entering Iko hot-wires the door controls again to only permit entry after a certain amount of time. Collecting themselves, Cmd. Dukes loses it- the horrible sights of the disfigured people and Auto-doc mutilation- has caused him to fail his Panic Check and gain a phobia of Auto-docs <!--player specified-->. The other two keep it together- mostly. 

Once through the door, the players are greeted by two groups of the Devoted (as they call themselves): Two figures staring off through the open shutters at a bizarrely blue-lit horizon; two figures viciously stabbing themselves in the arms yelling about their unnatural red blood-- "BLUE! BLUE! NOT RED! BLUE!"

Player make it up to the second floor to both unclog the toilet in restroom B (as asked by the AI)and ransack the living quarters (but make the beds as ask by the AI). New gear as follows:
  • 2x foil space blanket
  • 1x mouse
  • 1x jury-rigged shotgun
  • 2x AZURE BASE security protocol punch-card
<!--MOONBASE BLUES also comes with a "I Search the Body" d100 chart-->

Before leaving, the two Devoted staring off into the turquoise horizon warn the characters in unison: "You will see the Truth. You will know the Truth. We will make you. All of you."

OBSERVATION & GEOLOGY LAB: More dismay as the characters are confronted with 5 devoted huddled around the telescope in prayer lead by a woman with a face painted blue and one eye replaced by a prism (The Prophet). Seeking to the right, the characters enter the Geology Lab and are immediately struck by the blue light of a meteor fragment. All three players fail a Sanity save sending their characters reeling with early Meteor Psychosis-- the meteor and its light filling their mind's eye. Even Cmd. Dukes' mouse ran up to it.

Ysuko recovered first and blasted the meteor with the laser cutter. Blue dust, one atomized-mouse, and screams from the Devoted filled the air: "The Heretics have destroyed the ORACAL! Bring them to the Truth!". Two figures jumped Cmd Dukes trying to both crush his skull (20 total health lost) and subdue him with a tranq. gun. Iko had stumbled back to the door out of OBSERVATION but fired off a quick tranq. gun shot into one of the cultist who dropped into a heavy sleep <!--Critical 33 vs 34 COMBAT-->. Ysuko seared off the face of the second Devoted.

 AND WE ENDED IT THERE...PART II

<!--Notes to self for the future and to you the reader-->
  • Give the players time in the opening (and prompt them if needed) to: (1) get a sense of their surroundings; (2) divide up the one load-out kit.
  • Keep describing the Devoted (both singular & groups) as unique. Really layout for the players how wrong these people have become. If the player gag, cringe, or make a face- I've hit the mark.
  • I wish I had prepped a little more about what was in each area. Just to ensure I had enough in-game "stuff" around to help players solve problems since guns are low and they start with nothing. Player-driven solutions using in-game stuff is awesome.
  • Keep the stress coming! Drop by drop.