Wednesday, January 16, 2013

A Distant Inheritance 8

For the rest of the month I'm in adventure design mode, so I expect the players to stay on their best behavior and not read below the fold. 

The PCs reach Treemast, where someone can make a TN 10 Lineage roll to have a place of accommodation set up for them – the more people who make it, or the higher the roll, the better you should describe the place. Since the party high Education person has been preparing for this journey for some time it only makes sense that they have some contacts in their first port of call. This is Grunner, a retired human ship captain. If there’s a Sailor in the group he still owns a ship that will give them passage, if not he can point them to a ship that will accept passengers and or crew (depleting some of the coin recovered from the Nokken last session).

While in the city the high education types have a chance to learn something about the aforementioned magic sword. It is Halthastor, the wavecutter, and was designed, like many swords before it, for the Goblin Wars. In addition to its other magical properties (supernaturally sharp, glows when goblins are about) it also floats in any body of water no matter how much weight is put on it. The last time there was a record of Halthastor it had been wielded by a mercenary captain in the north some fifty summers ago. He was defeated by a goblin host under the command of Zegor the Canny. Zegor was said to have mad made allegiances with any number of foul water spirits, so he could easily have been the one to set up the trap to remove a weapon that could harm his allies. (This is here to emphasize the water magic nature of the campaign.)

The further analysis of the Chamberlain’s amulet, now that everyone gets to see it, reveals the emblems of all of the five major houses of Tarmalania. This will be important later when dealing with the peoples in the Giant’s Shadow. An Education check TN 15 (with a knowledge of Tarmalania helping, obviously) will also reveal on the back of the amulet a stylized map of the city that, if properly read, reveals where the tomb of the lords is. This tomb, by the stories, is said to house Varangan, another of the five blades. The PCs might well do to acquire that before going forward.

Eventually the PCs get on their boat, the Silverymoon, and begin their mandatory Travel component. The Silverymoon heads north, where the PCs are supposed to make it to a logging settlement, Brindur’s Gate, where the Silverymoon will take on wood and they will take the faded road west. The coastline becomes ever more overgrown as they head north, with some remnants of other locations long abandoned since without the western passages the land was less useful and less reason to rough it out. The sea starts to get rough after a week of travel, leading to Athletics (Endurance) rolls TN 5 to get any sleep at all. The captain (or the Sailor PC) becomes ever more concerned about this unnatural weather.

After two days of this, still several days from the logging village, the PCs meet this session’s monster – a Draugen. It’s an ocean dwelling giant, covered in seaweed that rides a half a rowboat. The initial problems will not even be the giant, but the Athletics and/or Education competition TN 15 to control the ship and try to escape. The PCs wills see that the thing is huge and highly likely to not be worth fighting. They won’t really be able to reach Brindur’s Gate – the better they do on the contest over three exchanges the better they are able to position themselves in the escape

Final TN 0: Have key gear and supplies for 27 days
Final TN 5: Have key gear and supplies for 9 days
Final TN 10: Have key gear and supplies for 3 days
Final TN 15: Have key gear and supplies for 1 day
Final TN 20: All supplies lost, PCs have map, medallion, Halthastor and key gear.
Final TN 25: all equipment and gear save map, medallion and Halthastor lost; PCs at -5 TN due to no equipment where they would be logical.
Final TN 25: as 25, but PCs must make TN 5 Athletics checks to survive to wash up on shore.

If they actually attack the Draugen it is TN 30, and best of luck. If they do manage to injure the thing to the point where it falls back (reducing the TN to 15 will do it. Water magic will reduce its TN by 5 or 10, depending on how well the PC rolls, Halthastor gives another -5 TN with a hit) it will slam its huge hands down when it dives, swamping the ship, damaging the rigging and leading to a similar outcome as a full escape success. The sailors will insist on dropping he madmen off and fleeing back to Treemast (Lineage 20 to avoid a mutiny – if they make that they get to Brindur’s gate and will be in good shape gear wise for next session.

If the PCs actually KILL it they will make it to Brindur’s Gate with a new Lineage Talent (Coastal Heroes), and will be in better shape gear wise for the events of next session.

If in Brindur’s Gate a Lineage 10 roll will let them equip themselves with ponies and supplies and give them semi-reliable maps to the Slate Hills. The old roads are now logging trails, and those logging trails peter out not too far from the city, but the engineering of the old roads ensures that some echo of them remains to reach the Slate Hills, and the main road has defendable waystations spaced a day’s travel apart to help defend travelers from Goblins. That’s where the PCs will pick up next session.

Most likely, however, is that they end up in some form of disarray, several days south of where they needed to be, sans most of their gear. A TN 10 Education check of any sort will tell them that there are Goblins in these woods, living in the and among the ruins of the human settlements.  Best to get a move on.

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