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The Keepers of the Woods now available


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#21 rosie187

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 12:15 PM

I finished running the game last night - it was great fun. Unfortunately I was down 2 players, so their character's chose to stay at Thistle Lodge due to the cold weather. They had just discovered that their landlady's husband was missing although not the importance of this, so they went back to Princetown to notify the police and continue looking into Professor Blackwood's death. They had great fun delving through the library, and I was able to add some more clues here including some extracts from the Ango-Saxon Chronicle and the Domesday book that I appended with suitable fictions for the adventure. They were very pleased with themselves when they realised the significance of the pattern of dates.

 

They made the correct conclusions at the Dartmoor Prison morgue and decided to return to Postbridge.

 

When they arrived back, they found that the vicar had called on Mrs Carter (I used the names from the original one sheet) and when they went to search Professor Blackwood's room they discovered the door ajar and the catatonic form of one of the absent player's character (a lock-picking dilettante) sprawled on the floor. After this, they returned to the church (having broken in the previous night but found nothing much due to the darkness) and this time met the vicar, who they were suspicious of, and then they examined the graves more closely. They managed to speak with Bill McArthur and then thought about staking out the vicarage (I had moved the vestry stuff to the vicarage here so that their failure to find anything much in the church the previous night wasn't a plot hole, but they didn't break in to find it). At this point they went on a semi-wild goose chase up to Crockern Tor, believing that this was the place to be, but apart from some acid burned vegetation there was nothing much, so they descended into the woods and staked out the grove. I let the film director character use his massive disguise pool to camouflage them as bushes and they lay in wait for the inevitable denouement.

 

For a suitably creepy ambience, I played two tracks of Gregorian chanting at the same time and significantly slowed down to represent incomprehensible chants. Then the ritual began. They held their place for almost long enough, but finally broke cover and disrupted it. The Marine Biologist walloped one of the members of the order with a tree-branch then ran off into the woods, the doctor hid in the bushes, the film director took a photograph that blinded the order with the flash and the archaeologist charged into the circle brandishing a prop pistol and trying to grab the dagger

 

In the end, the Doctor and the Marine Biologist were dissolved by the Wisht Hounds, the archaelogist was convinced to take Carter's place in the ceremony by the vicars force of will and the film director fled in his car, but his photographs when developed all showed carvings and images of the Green Man and the perfunctory police investigation found no evidence of his missing associates. He went back to Hollywood, moved into B-movie horror and died of a heroin addiction in the 40's. So all's well that ends well.

 

We all really enjoyed the game, and I heartily recommend the adventure.




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#22 FreddieF

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Posted 11 November 2016 - 02:53 PM

Sounds like a blast! Glad you had fun with it  ^_^


The Keepers of the Woods for Trail of Cthulhu is available now - download it here.

Those Within for Call of Cthulhu 7e - coming to a convention near you soon...

@freddiefoulds ; Visit my blog: Arcana Obscura


#23 vincentVV

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Posted 02 August 2017 - 08:55 PM

Seems like I'm going to run this wonderful adventure once again.

 

So I have an idea that may be useful.

 

I offer to cut the time periods of 25 years to only 22. Why so? Because 22 years is a length of Wolf Cycle - a 22-year solar cycle from one highest (or lowest) point of sun activity to another.

 

I also am going to include a diary of another folclore-researcher who disappeared here ~ 22 years ago and who made connections between the sacrifices and solar cycles - that would give the players something to think about.



#24 FreddieF

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Posted 03 August 2017 - 08:35 AM

Cool - let me know how it goes!


The Keepers of the Woods for Trail of Cthulhu is available now - download it here.

Those Within for Call of Cthulhu 7e - coming to a convention near you soon...

@freddiefoulds ; Visit my blog: Arcana Obscura


#25 vincentVV

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 05:42 AM

One more idea! =)

 

The "Hairy Hands" legend is not fleshed out in  scenario well.

 

So, let it sound like that:

 

"Hairy Hands" is a ghost of old Jeremiah Blakely, who disappeared in the woods 25 years ago without a trace. He hated people, did not communicate much with anybody and really shunned any technology and progress around. One day on the <insert appropriate date of sacrifice> eve he went into the woods and disappeared without a trace. Some say that the devil took his soul.

 

Since that time he terrorises the woods around. He can often be seen in the night and at the crossroads as a big black dog with flaming red eyes the size of a saurcer. Seeing him means death.

 

And since all those coughing and roaring taxomotors appeared - he hunts them down, grabs the driver's wheel and sends the cars offroad at the place he was last seen...

 

So, such a story helps us in several ways:

- we connect it more closely to the plot and events;

- we stimulate the PCs to look into the history of Postbridge (and really find that Jeremiah Blakely was named dead exactly 50 years ago for reasons unknown and even more - he can be connected to farther Blakely!)

- we give more logical explanation than simply some strange "Hairy hands".

 

Well, I think this will make the whole story more solid.

 

P.S. to the author - I googled the map of Princetown. It looks strangely similar to the maps from the adventure, including the prison! ;) Well done!



#26 FreddieF

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 07:10 AM

Fair enough. The Hairy Hands is based on a real life legend though, the explanation for which was the issue with the road: https://en.m.wikiped...ki/HHairy_Hands The unknown cause and the multiple explanations (including the ghost story) were actually reported in the media at the time. I left it intentionally vague because it isn't supposed to be directly linked to the scenario proper (it is something of a red herring) and I didn't want investigators getting bogged down in investigating it over looking into Blackwood death.

So changing the background to it significantly will change the scenario heavily. However, if you think linking it back into the main story of the cult would work, then cool.

The maps for the adventure are based on real life maps of both Princetown and Postbridge. I like to make things as historically accurate as possible.


The Keepers of the Woods for Trail of Cthulhu is available now - download it here.

Those Within for Call of Cthulhu 7e - coming to a convention near you soon...

@freddiefoulds ; Visit my blog: Arcana Obscura


#27 vincentVV

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Posted 06 August 2017 - 12:27 PM

well, ok we can give our ghost another name so that not to make the connection too obvious. =)

But leaving it totally without any connections - it looks a little inorganic to me.

 

I think I will leave the connection to the hounds but change the name. I will tel how it would work. =)

 

Real-life maps and events are really great - I do it myself. The only problem is to get the players to know they are real-life so that the work was not in vain. =)