"The Chronicles of Nentir Vale"

The civilized world has been reduced to a series of points of light in a great wilderness of danger and monsters.
The Book-House: Find Nentir Vale products.
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Paladyn
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"The Chronicles of Nentir Vale"

Post by Paladyn » Sun Jan 22, 2012 11:29 am

Finally, I have started my version of 'shred world', based on Nentir Vale, which I find amazing setting. I'll run different groups and their achievements, deeds and actions will be felt by other involved.
One party is playing on regular meetings, we use 4th edition rules and just finished March of the Phantom Brigade in very unexpected way. In two weeks we will start regular sandbox game. Below you'll find short report from other game, which is basically test drive of some of mine ideas and technology.
Few hours ago I have finished first RPG session conducted via Google+ Hangouts. I had two players and we played with Swords&Wizardry rules. Setting is northern-west corner of Nentir Vale (D&D 4th edition default setting).

We played along the rules with random stats, hit points, ordinary Armor Class, xp for killing monsters and looted gold. Guys quiickly picked-up mechanics, roleplayed very, very well. Less rule encourages more creativity, perhaps there is something in OSR nostalgia.

Session was a sandbox. I have presented a backcloth of history, some rumors and set players free to decide. They heroes were: a fighting-man Bedwyn and cleric Alvin. They chose to sell liquors priest brewed in nearby city of Winterhaven. After equipping themselves party moved on on nice, sunny, winter day. First leg of journey went relatively smooth, only at evening it became obvious they forgot to take a tent. Guys decided to turn to Misthaven, a small village surrounded with an ill-omened aura. Next day around a noon the heard cries from along a path and discovered two monster, resembling crossbreed of dog and human looting a cart. Cries went from a merchant, that lied in snow with broken leg. Bedwyn engaged gnolls with an arrows but missed. Seeing them charging, he climbed a tree. Alvin was unsure if he wanted to fight gnolls or run away. Next round Bodwyn killed first gnoll while second reached tree. Alvin was still idle. Third round began with mishap. Bedwyn rolled "1", his quiver toppled and arrows fell down, He had oly three of them. Despite this, on fourth round, he rolled critical hit and almost slain gonoll. Alvin attacked but missed. Still, one round later gnoll was dead.

Heroes treated merchant's broken leg and led him do Mistwatch. They slept night in stables and learned that haunted baron is looking for snakeroot, a herb of strong calming effect, that grows on marshes here poisonous snakes hatch. They wanted to counterfeit it but decided selling liquos in Winterhaven is more important. Journey (uneventful by dice decree) took them one day. Finally they reached city just before sunset, slept night at inn and next day conducted trade. Just as the were to journey back Google decided it is time to end and disconnected us.

What can I say? I liked rules, their simplicity was nice comparing monster-rules of D&D 3.x / Pathfinder. It reminds me AD&D's glory days. I borrowed system of rolling for random encounters from second edition (DMG p.101). Everything was rolled with dice. What I need is to create random happenings table so monsters are not only random encounter. while I have something like this for a city, I must prepare table for Wilderness.

Google+ Hangouts is a great tool, especially mode with add-ons. It let's me play and run games, with people that are too busy to attend regular sessions or live to far away.

The future is looking bright!

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Big Mac
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Re: "The Chronicles of Nentir Vale"

Post by Big Mac » Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:28 am

I look forward to seeing how this goes.
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Paladyn
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Re: "The Chronicles of Nentir Vale"

Post by Paladyn » Wed Feb 15, 2012 1:12 pm

Here is short report from second session.

Group lineup had changed as one of players, portraying Alvin, had to withdraw as his machine had had blown of. Fortunately another of my friend joined in, creating fighting-man and journeyman, traveling Nentir Vale, Awer. Awer is son of petty noble, who is last in line to succession, so had chosen to forge his own path to glory. To his ears came gossips of village far in the north, even further than Timbervale, that was either abandoned by inhabitants or raided.

Three heroes set on the way. Their journey was peaceful and quit, sun was shining and soon the arrived in cursed Mistwatch. Heroes booked night in stables and went down to sleep. But in the night Bedwyn awoken and found himself spectator of strange and eerie show. Blue and ghostly flames raged across town, especially it's ruined parts. Bedwyn woke Awer up and two of them observed. Soon they realized that they see scenes from city's past. Ghostly figures tried to control fire, fight it and soon was defeated by blows of wind. Pair of heroes went after a particularly outstanding pair. Wealthy merchant and his female companion ran away into woods, carrying a chest of interesting size. Soon both of fighter dived into woods. By sheer of luck they heard that someone or something was approaching.

Awer and Bedwyn hid in bushes. soon out of darkness and hedges shapes emerged. First one, armed with huge battleaxe, resembled a minotaur! Fortunately for those two, it was raiding band of hobgoblin, who chose to pillage one of Mistwatch's houses. There four of them and last in line, an archer, was suspicious, like he was able to smell heroes. When band passed by them, heroes began to wonder, what should they do? Fight or flee? Try to sneak around hobgoblins and warn villagers? There was no time for being subtly. When hobgoblins emerged on open ground, heroes attacked them with bow and crossbow.

Combats in Swords&Wizardry tend to be short and brutal. First level characters have just enough hit points to withstand one blow. Second is fatal at most times.
While three of hobgoblins turned around and ran toward heroes, an archer exchanged missiles with heroes. Both sides missed horribly. Than hobgoblin had hit Bedwy, wounding him severely. Next round,(when hobgoblin trio was almost upon heroes) he was shot down. Lucky initiative roll gave heroes a chance to fire one more time, before melee begun. The killed one of hobgoblins and clashed with two remaining. Bedwyn was cut down and Awer had to fend of two raiders. He killed one and fought with leader, finally killing him. It was exciting moment, as the kept missing each other, while having 1 and 2 hp remaining.

For next few days heroes regained their strength and health. They were called local heroes. Villagers began t be more open and told them some gossips about their lord and his cursed son. Also, the recollected some facts about great fire and nightly apparition. when it was visible again, Awer and Bedwyn once more went after wealthy trader and his companion. the witnessed pair hiding chest, than saw how she cuts man's throat only to be killed by something invisible. Heroes dig up rotten chest and inside found some money and potion of giant's strength.

Awer and Bedwyn decide to look for snakeroot but instead of herb they found a monster in marshes. It was ooze that attacked them when they approached to it's lair. After two hits it became obvious that they have met difficult opponent. Heroes' weapon began to melt and fall apart. The withdraw hastily and rained monster with hail of arrows and bolts. When it was dead, in it's lair the had found a huge chunk of gold, digested and melted by monster. With such kingly treasure, heroes went home and we had finished session.

Behind DM's screen
- I really like how Google+ Hangouts works. It gives me a chance t play with friends I used to play, but now, with many duties and burdens, I have no chance to meet in real life.

- Swords&Wizardry is nice little game, that is easily run without face-to-face contact. It reminds me AD&D and actually I wnet back to that system, toying with an idea of totally coming back (and abandoning rules-overgrown games).

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