Monday, 5 February 2007

A hanging in the platz

After three sessions of WFRP, my players are developing their characters and displaying some good roleplaying. While only 2 players are meeting regularly, the youngest is really developing as a player. This actually goes to my point that PnP gaming has social aspects that the current array of online MMORPGs cannot offer.

I do not believe I have discussed my campaign here, though I have offered some reviews of the second edition source book material for WFRP.

The campaign is still developing, but was seeded from the Game Master's Pack's mini-adventure Pretty Things. The campaign remains a bit free form, with only some minor steering by myself, though this is getting to be less needed as the players develop.

Last weekend closed Pretty Things with the PCs outside Radische having left their orphaned charge with the only people likely to have any interest in her future. Flush with some karls they were beset by their nemesis, Lars the bounty hunter (it didn't take long to see that this NPC from Pretty Things could be useful for developing plot points). Lars had recruited two roadwardens and some Hermsdorf town guard to capture the PCs on the road back to Hermsdorf.

Faced with fighting or arrest, the party opted for arrest. Lightened of weapons and monies, the party was marched back to a gate cell house. Lars and the captain of the roadwardens wasted no time, as most nemesis are want to do, in revealing the grand plan of the frame with the PC's public hanging.

I let the PCs sweat out the night in the cell, to face their "accuser," Mortiz (a poor man beset with Venomous Thoughts). Mortiz had met the blunt end of a PC's axe in the last session, faring better than his companions (one cleaved, the other ghastly wounded in the arm). Lars had recruited Moritz as an confederate.

I was not going to let the PCs hang, but I led them to the gallows in the morning. A crowd turning out, besides what I described as a foggy, chilly morning, for a "trial and hanging" by the roadwardens. The witnesses of the tavern fight where Mortiz and party were beset upon by the PCs (not without provocation of course) were asked the apropos questions to get the right answers. As Mortiz was called, things got ugly. Several volleys of greenskin arrows, flaming and not, rained out of the fog. This afforded the party a chance to escape in the smoke, fire, and death. The die rolls were tense however, I wasn't going to let the PCs just escape! One was wounded, and the party stole some horses in the ensuing chaos. Moritz was left dead in his wheelchair, skewered by arrows, the roadwardens answered the call to the defense of Hermsdorf, and Lars, well, melted into the fleeing crowds.

The party rode hard all day north to Lieske, where they sold the horses (rolling well enough to get 60% of full value), tended to wounds (at the vet! Lieske, according to the WFRP gazette is 1/3 the size of Hermsdorf, but Lieske gets on most official maps but Hermsdorf does not, go figure), and tried to sort out what to do next.

Which brings me to the point of this post...basically I have introduced a larger world event: A large band of orcs, operating from The Great Forest, have begun hit and run attacks on towns in southern Talabecland. How to play this? I have hinted in the narrative that riders passing through Lieske are begging for larger support from the counts and barons in the form of soldiers. A larger battle at Hermsdorf is on the horizon I think. How do the PCs fit into this? I'm taking some tips from Roleplaying Tips #318 on this matter. There are some great ideas to keep the tactical character play straight amongst the strategic developments.

If you're a GM, do you have thoughts on this type of development in your games?

Posted by caffeinated at 8:59 PM in d10
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