Chapter two of the Broken Land continues…
A DCC/Mythic solo play (with other rules and emulators as required)
One of the issues with solo play overland travel is, how do you fairly run it, still keep the game interesting, and not bog it all down?
There has to be some random element(s) so that you can’t just run an encounter by the numbers. For example: ‘Dear Diary: This morning, we encountered 4 hyenas at a range of 30 yards. Our volley of missiles put down two of them, and our axes slew the other two. Is hyena meat edible?’ There’s a lot of rolling to generate that, and the interest is limited to finding out if anyone dies.
I began this section by referring to an encounter table I wrote for ‘west of Atharva’. I rolled three encounters, then had to decide which system I’m using. dT&T is simple but leaves things like creature morale and speed of encounter to the GM.
I decided since I have DCC attributes, to use a ‘D&D Clone’ set of rules. I put a few parameters into Wizardawn’s Labyrinth Lord page using World Builder generator. The result is more satisfactory, and includes weather for the day.
However, I decided since I did generate the encounters, to keep them, but use DCC to adjudicate, as well as emulators of course. For the first time in the mini-campaign they include Universal NPC Emulator (UNE).
I really liked the DCC based idea found in Shrouded Fen of using a LCK check for each encounter to decide if there is a positive consequence. I will attempt to use that for each encounter.
Episode 6: The first day and night
GME Information: Chaos stands at 5. No new NPCs. No new threads.
Chaos check: all proceeds without changes
The seven rogues travel south-west towards the Spire in their first leg, then cross the Golden River and work their way up low cliffs to the overland trail that runs around the fens and south. The day is sunny, but mild, and they make good time. Fresh water is not guaranteed, since for parts of the journey the trail is well above the river. The fierce heat of late summer is not their friend!
The wild dogs
Encounter check: Riba (LCK 12) makes it. Range 50 yards.
“‘Ware to front! Beasts ahead!”
Mythic: Does this pack have pups? (50-50) No. ML=-1, otherwise as standard wolf or feral dog.
Wild dogs can be lethal: they do not fear man-smell. These dogs are simply resting and conducting normal pack behaviour. As they scent or hear the oncoming rogues they make enough noise that the rogues have at least one shot (at 50 yds then point-blank) before the pack gets to bite range.
Long range: Tadiko, with the longbow, misses but four of the hurled spears hit solidly! Two dogs are put down.
Morale check: Surprisingly the dogs press their attack!
Charge range: Tadiko hits and three flung knives hit. Two more dogs are down; the remaining seven rush the rogues, leaping and biting!
Initiatives: rogues, dogs.
Melee: Five of the seven rogues hit with some really good rolls, and three more dogs are out! The remaining four dogs are very effective, despite attacking armoured opponents and three rogues are (lightly) wounded.
Morale: this time with more than half down the dogs flee.
Since the rogues were successful but had to fight and took some wounds, chaos moves to 6.
A cautious parley with travellers
Encounter check: Win (LCK 13) makes his LCK.
Win, whose turn it is at point, holds up a hand palm out. An oncoming hunter, leading his woman and mule heaped with skins, does likewise. Behind those, half a dozen buckskin-clad roughs straggle to a halt. The two parties are no more than 20 yards apart, and there’s an uneasy pause as both calculate the dangers!
Travellers are generally friendly but may be disguised bandits, or for that matter, may decide to indulge in opportunist mayhem. The LCK check means they are disposed to be friendly, so I pull out another emulator, the Universal NPC Emulator (UNE).
UNE: “Kind sniper” – power comparable, motivation “hunt the trackless wilds”
PRS check for Binye and Dag, since their backgrounds (animal trainer and woodcutter) are somewhat relevant. Both fail.
“So, ye be bound south… aye, mebbe I heerd about powers an’ dangers, mebbe I ain’t. I c’n promise ye one thing, there be a mess o’ trouble ahead fer ye.”
UNE: The best I get based on friendly but guarded is “promise power.” There is a fabled powerful treasure south-east but I can hook back to this if the rogues wander that way.
Since the encounter has no effect at all, Chaos remains at 6.
Vultures are omens?
Encounter check: Elyn (LCK 13) makes it. Range 400 yards.
Mythic: Are the vultures stalking something living? (50-50) No.
Mythic: Are they preying on a valuable corpse? (50-50) No.
Mythic: Is this a mess the hunters left behind? (Likely) No.
Mythic: Is this a good water source? (50-50) Yes.
“Shoo! Beat it! That inlet looks clean… let’s get some fresh water while we can!”
The rogues keep an eye out in case the vultures – which look enormous even from a distance – decide they are tasty morsels, and fill up canteens before making away from the river again to find a good defensible campsite.
Since the vultures proved to be a good omen signalling where water is, chaos drops to 5.
There is no change in the weather.
Encounter check: Riba (LCK 12) makes it! Yay!
The rat swarm
Mythic: Is the rat nest accessible? (50-50) No.
Range 50 yards, rats and rogues have equal init (give or take lousy or good AGI) but Riba’s LCK check mean the watch is alert and as the cry goes up rogues seize brands from the fire and defend themselves!
Note: DCC does not have ‘swarm’ attack per se but it is the simplest way to adjudicate. Everyone is hit (1 dmge) and everyone must make a save against disease.
Everyone: DC5 FORT: Riba and Dag fail. They are diseased! Five of the seven rogues manage a hit with torches.
Morale: Critical failure! The rats flee!
Wounds are washed out and bound as best they can be, but by morning Riba and Dag are sweating and feverish!
Chaos moves to 6!