Dragon at the Edge

Last session was one of those sessions when the players did something completely unexpected.

Player characters decided to follow a rumor about dragon terrorizing Great Eastern Road and the bounty promised for it. They asked around at East Tinbluff and learned that the dragon had been seen around the town of Edge, last spot of civilizations on this side of the Eastern Trade Route. So they got supplies and started the 8 day journey to Edge.

The journey started without troubles, PCs encountered Juha Öppi and his wagon. Juha sells exotic pets to nobles and merchants in west and this time he had monkeys in his load. After some haggling, Jenna Krystal bought a mascot for her real estate business, the price was one bottle of hair spray.

The party was closing Edge when they met the next travelers. Coming around the bend they saw few wagons ahead and men fighting around them. It seemed that there was one group of masked men attacking a merchant caravan. Continue reading

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When in doubt, have some mushrooms

Couple of days ago we played the second part of the adventure in East Tinbluff where the miners were restless. Probably should have written this couple of days ago but Skyrim and Battlefield 3 happened like they usually do. Let’s hope I remember all the important details and observation I made during the session.

One of the PCs had gotten a job at the mine and he was invited to bring himself and his pickaxe for a meeting during lunch hour. He did so and found out that their foreman and leader of the rebellion Jurgen had heard about some foreign woman telling lies about him around the town. They were going to go throw her out of town with force if necessary. This of cource was one of the PCs in last session.

Our here at the mine was torn between staying hidden and warning his companions/employer. In the end he didn’t go with rest of the miners but tried to follow them quietly and deliver warning before they got to their target. That didn’t completely succeed. Continue reading

d12 Magic, Spells

Spells (so far) are based on D&D spells and modified to d12 system. I might start writing original spells sometime but at the moment I’ll use what is available.

Spell Stats

All spells have following stats.

  • Casting Difficulty (10+)
  • Learning Difficulty (10+)
  • Resisted (yes/no)
  • Target (self/single/multiple target/area)
  • Range (touch/range/line of sight/plane/unlimited)
  • Casting time
  • Duration
  • Description (including scaling effects)

As general scaling effect for all spells that can be resisted, extra degrees of success can be used to give the target penalty dice to the resistance roll. Continue reading

d12 Magic, Spellcasting

Second part of the magic rules.

How mages cast spells and what skills they use and all miscellaneous weirdness and little things that come from using magic.

Magic Skills

  • Channeling
  • Advanced skill used to cast spells
  • Mages channel energy from Sea of Chaos/Hyper dimensions to power their spells
  • No specializations
  • Energy Manipulation
  • Advanced skill used to control magical energies
  • Used to prevent side effects or control them
  • Specialization
  • Resistance, resist hostile spells
  • Control, preventing and controlling side effects or manipulating ongoing magical effects
  • Store, temporarily store channeled energy to gather enough for big effects Continue reading

Communist miner rebellion

First session of my d12 play test campaign took pleasantly surprising direction.

This was the very first session of the campaign so some basics things got written down first. The starting place of the campaign is the City of Snakes and the local lord is Count Thaddeus Snake who’s ancestors stole wisdom from snakes and tamed the land. City of Snakes has university where you can study theology and  sciences. The count is great benefactor of the university and especially the sciences department. Considering that the world is based on Renaissance period Germany this is exceptional. Another exceptional thing just outside the town is the star faring Guild’s compound.

All good stories need an inn so we got one, the Huge Crow. Huge Crow is favored by student and university faculty, food and beer are plentiful and cheap. The specialty of the place is that there chess sets on every table. Huge Crow servers as the home base for our intrepid heroes and this is where they started gathering their first rumors about what was going on in the county. After buying some drink and touring other local bars as well the player characters managed to hear following rumors: Continue reading

Outsourcing world building

Here’s a tip for all lazy GMs, outsource some or most of your world building to your players.

Today I ran the first session of my d12 play test campaign with approximately 1 hour of preparation. I think this will go down a lot as the campaign gets properly underway. To use this approach you need lots of random encounter tables and lists of names and other useful things.

For example today I needed to lay down the basics for the campaign. During the character creation session I sketched really rough map where we had one large city in the middle, river going from eastern mountains through the city to sea at west with one large lake on the way.

Add names for the city, lake, make up couple of additional cities (port, mining town in east) and name them. The world is ready.

Now comes rumor list. Rumor list is basically a list of small adventure hooks, one or two sentences that tell something interesting that is happening in the world. I aimed at 20 rumors but time run out and the player started to show up so I had only 18. I put those on a list to roll on and at the start of the session characters made information gathering rolls. On success they could roll from the rumor list to get adventure hook.

At this point things you just start listening what the players are talking and take real or mental notes about stuff. When they decide to do something based on the rumors you have heard something they thought about the rumor and quite likely gave you more ideas for the game. Based on all this you just go with the flow and see what happens. The players get to drive the play forward and you don’t have to spends hours preparing an adventure the players are not interested in.

Another component of this style of play is to have random encounter/event tables (lots of them). I had Vornheim and Runequest Cities on the table and they both contributed to the session. Another thing was lot of names.

The plan is that after couple of sessions the players have enough adventure hooks and loose ends from the sessions that I don’t have to do any preparations, the players take care of that.