5th January 2020
Sunday gaming at 'The Sovereigns' in Woking continues.
For the first time in almost exactly 3 months all 6 of us are in the same room at the same time. So on with 50 Fathoms.
Our 3rd ship, 'The Herodica' has been repaired and is now seaworthy.
Foolishly, the party have decided to make Jacob the captain of The Herodica. Doesn't anyone know that Jacob can't sail or even swim!
We discuss our next move and decide to head to the 'Kehuna Flumes' and set off.
During our journey, we spot a convoy of ships flying the Baltimus flag.
We approach the convoy, they in turn fire their cannons at us and warn us off. We hold back and query them.
They provide us with no useful information and threaten us again.
We decide it isn't worth the trouble and sail away.
As we approach Kehuna Flumes, we start to notice sea creatures that we don't usually see in waters and the air seems warmer than expected?
Then we see 'the flumes'.
They mostly have the appearance of a vertical stack of rock.
Some of the flumes are like chimneys and rise above the sea level, most however are under water.
'The Kehuna' are a tribal people and are very protective of the region as it lush in 'mineral' resources.
In fact we see minerals being spat out of a chimney whilst we are there.
We then noticed 3 elongated bodies swimming in the water around us. They realised that they are 'long' eels. Giant eels that produce electricity, it is wise not to strike them, so we moved to a newer spot.
Since we were at the Flumes to collect Kehuna gold, we looked around for a good spot too collect some 'minerals'.
Rackham and Wind dive down and begin their search. They manage to find 8 ounces of gold before we decided to move on. It was wise to avoid any local Kehuna.
We moved to a new spot and Rackham dived down again.
Rackham acquires some 'guard sharks' in case he encounters any trouble.
After some effort, he manages to 'mine' some more gold. Now that we have enough for our purposes, Rackham resurfaces and we prepare to move on.
14th December 2019
Threads - Part Two
Saturday is here at Matakishi's for the next session of 'The Cthulhu Hack'
At the end of the last session, we entered the mysterious black tent.
It lead us to a strange looking town square. There were painted houses on wooden walls, a clown car and an empty 'Punch & Judy' stall.
Whilst we are discussing out next move Punch and Judy appear and they begin fighting with each other. Then floating appear and take them away.
'That's the way to do it!'... I guess...
We find a door and go through it, weirdly it leads to a strange police station.
What follows is another strange series of events where we encounter one strangely distorted character from Punch & Judy after another, as well as strange locations.
Eventually we find a poem. After reading it, we realise that the poem is telling us to find a number of items related to the clown car.
We go about finding these items, this leads us to finding Lydia Little - Earnest's wife. we also encounter a friendly little dog.
We manage to collect the items and return to the clown car. Fit all the items in, get in the car and drive away.
We then find ourselves in a new strange place, what appears to be The Dreamlands! Surprisingly, the friendly little dog has now become a cat!
To be continued.
7th December 2019
Threads - Part One
So it's a Saturday and we're at Matakishi's for some tabletop goodness.
Tonight we are playing in the next of Matakishi's Cthulhu Hack scenarios, promisingly (Or not promisingly in reality.) title 'Threads'.
It had been a while since an event had drawn the interest of the little group of investigators that we are.
We were approached by an individual wanting us to investigate the disappearance of a nine year old boy from a birthday party. They believed this had something to do with the clown that they had hired.
This led to an unusual string of events.
Even more children (And some adults.) had gone missing.
We encountered strangely feral children on bicycles that turned out to be some sort of stunted dwarf.
A weird clown that ran away from us with a unnatural gait.
Bizarre and mesmerising flyers.
Finally, webs, lots and lots of webs, everywhere.
During our investigation many of our leads pointed towards a single location.
A newly opened restaurant.
Eventually, things came to ahead and during the hours of darkness, we broke into the restaurant.
What we found withing is not be discussed here, but we did manage to find a rescue Ernest Little, one of the adults that had gone missing.
Earnest's wife, Lydia was still missing.
Further investigation led us to a black tent on the local heath.
We went to investigate. With us with had Earnest, looking for Lydia.
Also with us was Casper Jasper an expert of spiders we had encountered.
We entered the tent and found ourselves somewhere strange.
To be continued.
10th November 2019
Gaming Sunday continues at 'The Sovereigns' in Woking.
Next up was; 'Legends Untold'. Legends Untold is a sort of hybrid card game RPG. The players take on the roles of nascent heroes thrust into adventure by circumstance.
These heroes will form a party and explore either caves or dungeons, whilst the role of 'GM' is played by various decks of cards.
There are 2 Legends Untold games, 'The Weeping Caves' & 'The Great Sewer'.
What's in a game?
Legends Untold packs a lot of cards into a relatively small box. These include:
How's it play?
The setup for each game depends on which scenario card is used. The scenario will tell the players the number of card to put into each of the game's decks.
The game is divided into 4 phases.
Time and events
As explained above, the scenario will determine how big the event deck is. A common size is 6 cards.
Legends Untold has lots of different types of tests. Lots of them.
Like I said, lots of types of tests.
There are 2 types of trap. A normal trap which is encountered when drawing a card from the obstacles deck and a booby trap drawn from the adventure deck, either before combat or when searching.
Combat in Legends Untold occurs over a number of stages.
Each scenario has its own victory or defeat criteria.
Generally, if all the PCs are knocked unconscious, it's a defeat.
Legends Untold includes rules and components for a campaign. The campaign is about saving the refugees of an invasion
During the campaign, PCs will increase in level as it progresses. Additionally, the results of a scenario will have some impact on later scenarios in the campaign. This includes rating the players on how many refugees they managed to save.
It's sort of like a legacy game but without being asked to rip up any cards!
There's a lot to think about here. The game certainly packs a lot of stuff into a small box. But is it good stuff?
The exploration mechanics are quite good. Choosing to follow light or dark routes both have advantages and disadvantages. I like how the readiness rules interact with traps.
I like the event deck and how it works. I like how as the event deck gets smaller, events become more common. It gives players the feeling that they are working against the ticking clock.
Decisions regarding the spending of time become very important.
I like how talent cards are also used as hit points. It removes an extra element of bookkeeping from a game that already has a lot of things going on.
Losing an ability when wounded makes you feel weaker.
When PCs gain levels, they gain additional talent card, thus they also gain more hit points.
But perhaps there are too many character stats and thus tests related to them. More often than not, I found that stats became irrelevant, because across all the characters, they always tended to be someone who gave a +2 bonus.
Not only that, there are so many rules regarding tests, that the rule book is never closed.
I understand need for variety and the need to make all PC stats relevant. But tests could use some streamlining. In my mind more complexity does not equate to more depth.
Combat is equally clunky. It's quite confusing that ranged and melee combat are the same but also different. In melee , it's good that both attack and defence are resolved in a single roll. But why couldn't the same philosophy be applied to ranged combat? I know that the game needs to differentiate between PCs and foes who do and don't have ranged attacks. But I feel that combat needed more work, more testing and more streamlining.
Finally, the setting is quite uninteresting. It's pretty generic and uninspiring. Because of the I found it hard to engage with the game. Perhaps it as the steep learning curve. Or perhaps it's because I've played quite a lot of RPGs over the years
However, it's quite an ambitious game in its own way. I'm not willing to write it off without trying it another couple of tries.
6th October 2019
Sunday afternoon and we're at 'The Sovereigns' in Woking for our next session of 50 Fathoms.
Night has arrived and during the hours of darkness we dream of Tressa the Red. In our dreams, she tells us we must pour water from another world on to Ograpog. We also need to learn the names of the hags. Tress tells us we need 'The Tears of Lys' and that 'Tomas the Orinjo' has it. - Then the dream ends.
The next day we discover that repairing the frigate that we salvaged will take 4 days and cost 200 pieces 'o eight.
Shia goes to speak to one of her many contacts to see if they know anything about Tomas.
Shia learns that he serves aboard 'The Valiant'. 'Javier Espanoza' is the captain. The last known location of The Valiant was somewhere between 'The Kieran Empire' and 'The Grey Isles'.
Whilst we are waiting for the frigate to be repaired, Rackham goes diving for loot amongst the sunken parts of the city.
Baxter goes 'thieving'.
Win goes exploring, she finds someone looking for herbs and is willing to pay.
Meanwhile Shia and I go looking for goods to sell on later.
26th September 2019
Thursday night and time for the next session of WFRP.
The 'Enemy Within' campaign continues.
Our party are still in Altdorf, investigating the conspiracy that murdered the Grand Theonogist.
The party have just learned that four individuals have been captured and after some 'interrogation' have confessed to the murder.
Unsure what this means for their investigation, they suspect that these are four innocent scapegoats who have been forced into confessing. The party decide to look into matters. It turns out that the 'Knights of the Fiery Heart' have captured the four suspects. The party then managed to track down where they are being held.
As the party are headed to the cells, they notice that there are a lot of people on the streets of Altdorf. Rumour has spread that the 4 suspects are all 'Ulricans' and anger is rising amongst 'Sigmarites'. The tension is palpable.
Meanwhile, the party speak with the captain responsible for the four prisoners. He informs them that the four were captured after they had received an anonymous tip. The party convince the captain to be allowed to question the prisoners.
The first prisoner proudly admits that he was one of the ringleaders and was responsible for the explosion. He names 'Brother Karl' as the chief organiser of the conspiracy.
The party then speaks to a second prisoner who claims he is innocent and had nothing to do with anything. The party are quite convinced of his innocence. They question him further but he is evasive and cannot answer many of their questions - to the frustration of the party.
19th September 2019
It's a Thursday and this now means it time for WFRP, our playing day has changed.
'The Enemy Within' campaign continues.
Our brave adventurers are still in Altdorf and investigating the death of the Grand Theonogist.
During the last session, the party realised most of their leads have met with suspicious and nasty ends.
They only have 1 living lead left: An agitator called 'Mayer Gauss'. The party have discovered that he as an associate of the deceased 'Batrek Steelfist'.
They also know that Mayer tends to appear at the speaker's corner close to the university district every week or so.
Over the next few days they visit speaker's corner frequently without success. They also investigate all the local pubs and drinking establishments. Mayer is recognised, but no one has firm details about him.
Finally, party investigate some colleges to see if Mayer was a former student, but he was not an alumni at any of the colleges they visited.
Then on one morning, the party are leaving their townhouse and their is a buzz on the streets. After a bit of chatting, the party discover that a rumour is circulating the city: The assassins have been caught!
14th September 2019
Saturday lunchtime at 'The Sovereigns' in Woking means more 50 Fathoms.
Location: Brigandy Bay.
Now that we have sold our cargo, we are looking for a good price on goods to sell on. Unfortunately, Brigandy Bay is a 'consumer' and not a 'producer' of goods, so we don't find any good prices.
We are also looking for 'winter clothing' for the next part of our journey.
We find 'blue-bear' suits in a shop, but they are very expensive. Whilst negotiating with the shopkeeper Baxter had entered into an argument with him and was kicked out into the street. As he left he managed to sneakily steal a telescope.
Captain Shia haggles the the price down by trading in the treasure map we had just acquired for a big discount.
Upon returning to our ship, we spot the shopkeeper looking for something in the docks. It turns out he's looking for a ship.
Rackham approaches shopkeeper and convinces him to come aboard our ship.
At this time Aquirus disembarks and takes his leave of our company to go his own way.
Finally we set sail.
A few days out of Brigandy Bay and we spot something. We have encountered a frigate without any mast drifting in the sea.
Approaching closer, we see signs of a battle, cannon ball holes, bloated bodies on deck, etc. Then someone appears on deck, waves at us and collapses.
The frigate is named 'Conquistador', when we go aboard we find the collapsed man has been mutilated. Win attempts to heal him.
The man is named Jim Black. his ship was attacked by pirates. The captain decided to surrender, but the pirate captain had the crew butchered.
Jim Black tells
The description of the pirate captain matches that of James Lowe - the man we rescued when we left Coaker Mountain. The pirate ship, a galleon, was named 'Mad Dog'.
Jim Black tells us they were attacked some 2 hours ago.
We search the Conquistador and find no other survivors, just their personal effects. We also find a large supply of food in the cargo hold.
we decide to leave, towing the Conquistador behind us. It's slow going, but after a week of travel we arrive at Baltimus.
After docking, it takes a while to find a buyer for the food-salvage. But after some persuading we manage to sell it all.
We put the Conquistador in to 'drydock 3' for repairs.
8th September 2019
Sunday lunchtime at 'The Sovereigns' in Woking means 50 Fathoms.
Location: On route to Brigandy Bay.
After acquiring what is now called 'The Jezebel' we continue on to Brigandy Bay. The remainder of our journey is uneventful and we arrive at our destination.
Captain Shia and I set off to sell out cargo. The captain seeks out one of her many contacts. When we find the fellow, he presents us with a 'treasure map'. It is signed by the name L'Omaise - who we believe to be Francis L'Omaise and he wants to sell it to us.
Anyway; we find some buyers and sell the cargo for a good price and acquire the treasure map.
Meanwhile: Baxter has decided to go gambling and takes Rackham with him. During the game there is a big winner at Baxter's table. Rackham has won big! Rackham know little about gambling and is suspicious of his big win and decides to leave immediately.
However on his way out he is stopped by 'the establishment' and led into 'the back room'
From his table, Baxter can hear 'punishment' being administered to Rackham. In order to try and take the heat off of Rackham, Baxter accuses another gambler of cheating. But the accusation is not too convincing doesn't help Rackham.
Eventually Rackham is released from the gambling den and goes exploring Brigandy Bay.
1st September 2019
It's Sunday lunchtime and we're at 'The Sovereigns' in Woking. This means it's time for 50 Fathoms.
Location: The Teeth.
Having just listened to Tressa's message and left her tower; we depart for civilisation.
We need to sell the precious stones we've acquired to buy winter clothing and more provisions.
We decide to sail for Brigandy Bay, the journey is expected to take a week.
During the journey we encounter a galleon flying an English flag. As it draws closer to us, it drops its English flag and raises the 'skull and crossbones' - pirates!
Battle is met.
In the open moments of the battle, Baxter leaps over to the other ship and engages several of them.
As the conflict endues, Captain Shia taunts the pirate captain and dares him to come aboard. The pirate captain jumps across, intent on attacking Shia. However Rackham uses his magic to blow the pirate captain into the sea.
The haul the pirate captain out and take him prisoner. Then Captain Shia manages to convince the remaining pirates to surrender to us.
We have taken their galleon as or prize. Captain Shia renames the galleon from 'The Flying Irishman' to 'Jezebel'.