Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Estarion, game 2.

Meadow and Regga go missing. Arturius  recruits some new muscle: grim hermit/scholar/wizard Jarret Helfiker, twin-scimitar wielding druid Sharin, and berserk axe-wielding hobo with memory loss Carver and goes looking for intelligence at the fuller’s that they had as a lead from the first game.

After some inept espionage at the fuller’s, Sharin and Carver go undercover working as laborers and, after being sized up as potential kidnap victims, they manage to be too obvious and make it clear that they are surveilling the place looking for rat cultists.

After the botched surveillance, the heroes head out after a day of labor and come in to bust in at night, clambering down the stairs and into an ambush. Unprepared and too eager to move forward, the heroes become pincushions under fire from multiple crossbowmen. Jarret goes down, is healed back up; Arturius and Carver go down; and Sharin stays up at just 1 hit point. Jarret spends his time picking off bad guys from cover until they move to regroup, then he and Sharin flee with the unconscious colleagues. They end up fleeing and hiding in a nearby shack, hoping to hide until they can recover and regroup.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The John Wick movie posters are confusing the hell out of me

I keep seeing movie posters for the upcoming film "John Wick" starring Keanu Reeves. This confuses me to no end, and I had to look it up because I thought it very unlikely that a major studio was backing a biopic about a game designer, even if they were a big fan of Legend of the Five Rings and 7th Sea.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Estarion: First Game

I already ran my first game in Estarion with my friends Victor, +Rich Howard, and +J.M. Perkins. Victor was playing Meadow, half-elven Warlock whose beloved childhood book is the source of her fiendish power; Rich playing Arturius Curius, human cleric of Poeidon with a penchant for speaking to sea life; and J.M. playing halfling two-weapon fighter Regga Thistlethorn.

Being the first game, we begin with a bit of a railroad: the Beggar King offers Regga 200 gold worth of goods to help investigate a number of missing beggars who have gone missing. He hires Meadow, a former fellow orphan from his youth, for 15 gold and convinces Arturius the cleric to help him for free.

After casing the neighborhood, the heroes track down a tenement run by a rat cult. Rather than predictably busting in to the building from the front, the heroes make it to the roof, then toss an evil adept out the window and run away, dragging the adept with him.

After some interrogation, the heroes get a clue that the cult now has a headquarter under a fuller's, then go back to the cult headquarters and find out that the cult has bugged out. They learn the cultists are planning a revolution against the Aquilans, worship a rat god, and seem to be trying to infect the healthy beggars with some sort of disease. The heroes plan to let the authorities know what's going on, but only after they finish the job.

Obligatory gaming material: Here is my map of the tenement and secret basement temple/prison:

 

Saturday, October 4, 2014

"Vornheiming" Estarion

I have a binder filled with tables for Estarion. They are, in a meaningful way, the Estarion campaign guide, as much of the setting is made up along the way. One of the most useful ideas that Zak S. contributes to running city games in his blog and in Vornheim is the idea that running a city campaign shouldn't be about memorizing the details of a pre-planned setting, but creating a dynamic but flavorful framework to respond to your players with a dynamic and responsive ad lib process.
  • Judges' Guild: Ready Ref Charts:
    • Guildsmen, Merchants p. 3
    • Proclamations, p. 7
    • Crime, Trial and Punishment, pp. 8-10
    • Attack Reasons, p. 16
  • Lamentations of the Flame Princess: Vornheim:
    • Urbancrawl Rules, p. 35
    • Contacts, p. 39
    • Optional Rules for Chases, p. 40
    • Optional Rules for Libraries, p. 41
    • Customized versions of:
      • Aristocrats, pp. 46-47
      • Books, pp. 48-49
      • City NPCs, pp. 50-51
      • Encounters, pp. 54-55
      •  "I search the body", p. 58
      • Taverns, p. 56
    • Contacts table, p. 52
    • Directions, p. 53
  • AEG, Toolbox:
    • Prisoners in Jail, p. 116
    • Prophecies and Fortunes, p. 141
    • Traps, pp. 84-86 (combined and abridged)
  • Chaosium, Cities:
    • Character catch-up
  • From others' blogs (which I have also modified):
Using Zak S.'s Urbancrawl rules, my current map of the city looks like this: