Saturday, June 17, 2006

Warhamster - It's A Dark World, After All

So Thursday night my regular gang ran through the rest of the introductory Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay adventure. We were joined by a halfling Watchman, in addition to the previous characters.

The phrase I kept using was "It's a dark world". Why did this happen? It's a dark world. Why are these people nasty? It's a dark world. Why do we have Insanity Points? It's a dark world.

As intro adventures went, it was OK - I would prefered to have all the informational bits in the adventure itself as opposed to scouring through the book. And while the main combat worked from a dramatic side, it was frustrating as the player's percentage scores were so low and their die rolls were so high - it did feel like they didn't have much in the way of options. There were some interesting bits:

The camp follower has no viable combat skills, and as such is avoiding combat, to the point that when the other heroes go off into the woods after the missing person, she's more than willing to let them go and sit out that part of the adventure. It's going to be interesting keeping her engaged when the character definitely does not reward you for acting heroically. Just as worrisome, she has haggling skills out the ears, but I'm not seeing how to fit her haggling skill into the day-to-day mechanism of trade.

In another matter, when the core of the adventure is that your village is fleeing a beastman invasion, probably it would be a good idea that others they meet on the road would be similarly concerned. The best the characters got was a firm "thank you - now get out", which left them hoping the beastmen would burn down their remaining villages. Then again, it's a dark world.

Speaking of darkness, our dwarf bodyguard, before abandoning the town, dug spiked pit traps throughout the village to trap invading beastmen. It was amusing because in the written adventure, they encountered spiked pit traps dug by the former goblins for those that would follow.

In a world where reading is an advanced skill (which means if you don't have it, you can't do it), its a real bad idea to leave a major clue in the form of a note. Just saying. Turns out that only one character in the group can read. Actually, this came up because they later got a book of chaos magic and at that point I remembered that most of them could not read it.

If there is an orphan in the plot, everyone expects the orphans to run off or get kidnapped. Also just saying. The camp follower made things worse by telling the orphans that dwarves eat small children, then let the dwarf bodyguard watch over the kids. So they're traumatized. But it's a dark world.

Also, telling the local NPC leader exactly what happened in the forest when they went after the missing person (and came back without the missing person) requires much more careful shadings of the truth than were employed.

The other dwarf, the burgher, ended up with a holy relic, which he used to test whether the book of chaos magic was evil or not. The relic left a sizzling imprint in the book (GM's decision) and they decided to burn the book immediately. They are already not thinking in D&D terms, which I think is a good thing.

And finally, I used a square grid for the first session, and wasn't really pleased with it. And I roughed in the distances for the second session, and wasn't really pleased with that, either. So I have to find a middle ground.

But all in all, it went pretty well, and we're going to pick it up again a week from Thursday when we get together again. And I may report of our proceedings.

Or I may not. After all, it's a dark world.

More later,