4th April 2020
Saturday is here and we're not at Matakishi's, the Covid-19 has claimed Saturday nights too as we are now all socially distancing.
This means it's time to play over Skype!
Since we're playing over Skype, Matakishi has decided to run something different, something simpler.
In Darkest Warrens
This is where 'In Darkest Warrens' comes in.
In Darkest Warrens a very light RPG, condensed into 2 pages or so.
PCs have 4 stats, each with an associated value. All tasks are assigned to one of these 4 stats. To succeed, all a player needs to do is roll equal to or above the value (So lower values are better.).
There are 5 professions, each profession grants a player a special ability that they can use once per combat
Magic is equally as simple and elegant. Magic users can cast each spell they know once per combat, but if they fail to cast it, they don't lose the spell and can try to cast it again (Until they succeed at it.).
I could write more, but it would probably end up longer than the actual rules.
Suffice to say that these rules are designed for quick 'pick-up-and-play' fun and not long term play.
So on with adventure and exploration!
Our brave band of heroes are:
Ranulf Rawhide; a barbarian, played by Kevin.
Egbert the Undecided; a mage, played by Mark.
Urham; a mage, played by Micheala.
Cosmo Naught; a ranger, played by 'Yours Truly'.
Our travels have taken away from home and we have found ourselves in the hamlet of 'Boburn', a quiet and simple looking settlement.
Upon entering the hamlet, we are approached by the elder who wants us to rescue the hamlet's prize cow, Brenda.
Brenda had been stolen by an ogre who has carried Brenda away to a fortress to the north, no more than a day's walk from Boburn.
We discussed our options and the elder offered a reward - a reward we did not refuse!
We set off on our way north, soon we encountered what seemed to be a wise woman selling 'mushroom healing potions'.
We asked her if she had seen Brenda the cow, but she knew nothing.
We then asked the wise woman if she knew anything about an ogre to the north. She replied that there is no ogre and we should be wary of the sound of the 'pitter-patter' of small feet.
This instantly made us think of two possibilities, goblins... or giant spiders!
Finally, the wise woman informed us that 'The Goblin King's strength comes from his crown'.
Our journey drew to a close when we spied the castle on the horizon. When we approached we saw that it was in a state of some disrepair. We also noticed a pair of small figures sitting hunched over a fire and eating.
We approached them and confirmed that they were goblins. Luckily it didn't look like they were eating beef! We asked them about Brenda, but they pleaded ignorance of the situation. - Suspicious?
We asked them what they knew about the fortress? They told us the fortress as occupied by 'Gurt the Goblin King', They could not, or would not supply us with more information. We left them be and did some searching of our own.
We searched the area around the front of the fortress, my aptitude with the wilderness revealed cow tracks heading through the main gates and into the fortress. We approached and listened at the wall. We could hear 'mooing' on the other side!
We decided against a frontal assault through the gates. Instead we scouted the perimeter and found a back way in. This was a much more agreeable.
We needed a way through the door, it was locked and we had no key. Ranulf stepped forward up, intent on barging the door down. No door could resist his brawny bulk.
But resist it did!
It was down to Egbert to show the party how a door is kicked in!
Now we were in, we had exploring to do. We went and investigated rear tower to the left. Success! We had found Brenda - and four goblins - and an enormous goblin wearing a crown.
Very quickly, a battle ensued and we set upon into the goblins. The goblin king seemed tougher than we expected, so remembering what we had been told, Urham grabbed his crown. The goblin king immediately crumpled to the ground, shrunk to normal goblin size and died. The crown had given him extra resilience that kept him going, now the crown was gone; so was the resilience.
Soon the battle was over and we were victorious. That was easy.
But alas, it was not to be. Brenda the prize cow would not fit through the doorway by which we had entered the fortress, we had to find another way out, probably through the main gates we had hoped to bypass.
We followed the corridor until it opened into a small hallway with four exits. We check the first door on the right.
This room is filled with bodies. Disturbingly, most of the bodies have had their heads crushed? Looking around we found a chest, we also notice there are no other doors out of here. But there's a big hole in the wall that probably leads into the adjoining room.
Cautiously we looked through hole, it did lead to an adjoining room and within this room we founda 'milk swilling ogre'!
Stepping back, we looted the chest and formulated a plan to attack the ogre.
Then we rushed the ogre. Our forethought and strategy were a success and we manage to defeat the ogre without issue.
We've explored two rooms so far and continue exploring, we checked the first door on the first and it led to the courtyard, we decided to avoid the courtyard for now.
So we go through the only door remaining, the door ahead - and it leads into another hall.
The door to the right leads into the goblin latrine! Ewww! To be avoided!
The door ahead is barricaded, to keep something inside the room from getting out. Our thoughts were drawn back to the wise woman's words about the pitter-patter of tiny feet and how it made us think of giant spiders.
We decided to also avoid this room and perhaps investigate it later.
That only leaves the courtyard.
The courtyard was mostly empty, there was a well here and on the far side a tower, the last area to explore.
We entered the courtyard and despatched the four goblins we found there. As we crossed the courtyard, we heard something strange. Singing was coming from the well, a woman's voice singing.
Ranulf climbed down the well and at the water level found a side passage that disappeared off into the darkness.
We had a choice now, whether to go into the well and wherever that may lead, or finish exploring the fortress.
We decided to finish exploring the fortress. Upon entering the tower came across a peculiar situation: A goblin fighting three massive rats!
We dispatched the rats and questioned the goblin. Unfortunately, he knew very little, so we let him go.
It was left to us to explore the tunnel from the well.
We descended and went along the tunnel. The singing was beautiful, but we could not make out the words.
The tunnel opened out into a circular room. Within was a small girl, surrounded by small dolls!
The girl turned to look at us as we entered the room, her eyes were entirely jet black and terrifying.
So terrifying that Urham and I fled the room!
The girl let out a scream and the dolls attack!
When Ranulf and Egbert attacked the dolls, their strange porcelain heads exploded and there was a myriad chorus of screaming voices!
After a few moments, I gritted my teeth and set my jaw and returned to the fight. We focussed our attacks on the 'devil-child' and slew it, this caused all the remaining dolls to explode!
We returned to the surface and found that Brenda had gone. Stolen by the goblin. Stupid, stupid goblin.
Luckily we managed to follow Brenda's tracks and retrieve her, the goblin and his two companions (From the campfire.) were trying to escape. We gave them a telling off and returned to Boburn.
We were given our reward and became guests of honour at a feast.
We are also told that we might find work at the town of Darkholme.
I play, I paint.