Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Continuity in 'The Edge of Darkness'


  • Please log in to reply
3 replies to this topic

#1 Celebrim

Celebrim

    Master

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 49 posts

Posted 19 November 2017 - 02:31 AM

So, I've been studying 'The Edge of Darkness' with the intent of using it as a introductory scenario with fairly low lethality and potential tie ins to any other scenario involving 'The Brotherhood'.

 

One thing that really confuses me is just exactly where the lurking creature is confined prior to the death of Rupert, namely, is the monster confined to the interior of the house or is the monster confined to the exterior of the house.  The text is highly ambiguous on this point, and either answer appears problematic.

 

1) "The monster is confined to the interior of the house"

 

Ok then, but Player Aid #1 explicitly tells the players, "Released from the binding symbol the thing - with a screech that could only have been unholy satisfaction - fled the house, disappearing out the window as a roaring, screaming wind of boiling colors."   Clearly the thing can leave the house, because we are told it did so, and so it is not confined to the interior of the house.

 

 2)"The monster is confined to the exterior of the house"

 

This fits some of the evidence.  For example, both the PC's and Jake appear to be quite safe as long as they remain in the house, the monster fled the house after released and the wards appear to prevent the monster from returning into the house.

 

But this answer presents an enormous problem, because the whole point of the scenario is to get rid of the monster now that it is no longer bound to the house by the death of Rupert.  If the monster had been free to wander anywhere outside of the house for any distance before this point, why didn't it kill things that came near the house and not merely those things in the attic?   And now that Rupert is dead and it is unequivocally free to go anywhere it likes, why in the world is it staying in the attic near the point of its prior confinement and the warded house?   And why the attic?  This thing makes a mockery of mere matter, why can't it equally stay for example under the ground in the yard if it wants to avoid light? 
 

Clearly the intention is somehow for the monster to be confined neither to the exterior of the house nor the interior of the house, but that theory goes out the window with the clear statement that it went out the window.   The intention appears to be that it has been hitherto confined to the attic, but this requires we rewrite the text of Player Aid #1.

 

How do you resolve this puzzle and why am I the only one bringing this up?   Has the issue been clarified in later printings (I have the 5e rule book)?

 

Other lesser continuity issues:

 

The murder of Marion: Marion was murdered less than a year afterwards by what is implied to be Brotherhood agents looking for the Mu box.  Yet despite the fact that Marion was linked to Rupert BY NAME in the newspapers in 1882 in events that would have been suspicious to anyone with mythos lore, the Brotherhood were completely unable to track the Mu box to Rupert all this time. 

 

The Mu box itself: The investigators that solve this puzzle end up for all their work with absolutely no clues that are relevant to either this scenario or any future scenario.  The hieroglyphic translation might as well not exist for all the meaning it conveys.
 

Red Jake's survival:  Supposedly Jake has evaded the lurker previously.  Yet Jake has no means of evading an attack by the Lurker, since the Lurker has move 12.  How the heck did he successfully run away?  No PC has the resources to do that.

 

Red Jake's return: Why in the heck did Jake come back?  This is bizarre and inexplicable behavior even for someone terrified into insanity.

 

The Sheaf of Papers: If the house is invaded by hobos and the like, why are the papers not disturbed after some 40 years in the house?

 

The Powder of Ibn-Ghazi: It's not at all made clear whether the monster, when sprinkled with this, becomes at least partially vulnerable to physical attacks.  The text says it "takes on semi-solid form", but not exactly what that means (if anything).  If it doesn't mean anything, why is it said?

 

Robert's Injury: Robert is killed by a twisting rending attack, yet this attack is wholly inconsistent with the injuries the monster is shown to produce, it's stated weaponry, the method with which it would attack the players, and the clues littering the area of the house regarding it's stated preferred mode of attack.

 


Edited by Celebrim, 19 November 2017 - 02:52 AM.



Log in to remove this video.

#2 Celebrim

Celebrim

    Master

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 49 posts

Posted 19 November 2017 - 04:20 AM

OK, after some thought.

 

1) Clearly confined to the inside of the house is unworkable, as the PC's would then be exposed to attack by a foe well beyond them.  I can't think of a workable way to be confined both inside and outside of the house neither and at the same time, which leaves us with confined to the outside of the house but unable to leave the vicinity.   So barring a better suggestion, confined to the outside it is.

 

2) It's a simple matter to remove the names of Crawford, Cecil, and Rupert from the 1882 newspaper article, explaining their survival and Allen's untimely death.

 

3) It's a fairly simple matter to invent a more elaborate and relevant inscription.  It won't necessarily tell the players much, but at least it will be more atmospheric and give some sense of being informative and worthwhile to discover.

 

4) With a monster confined to the outside of the house, Red Jake doesn't need to run away.  Instead, Jake is attacked approaching the house and escapes by running into it.

 

5) Jake has remained in the basement ever since.  While he may not be in his right mind at the moment, we now no longer have to explain how his goal isn't even logical even in terms of his insanity.

 

6) The papers and so forth are hidden in a more secure location than presented in the scenario.  Rupert gives the party instructions for finding it. 

 

7) The powder does make the creature somewhat vulnerable to attack, but its still takes minimum damage from physical attacks.

 

8) While the whole 'delicately eats the heart out' thing is cool, it doesn't fit with any injuries that make sense for a carriage accident.  But perhaps it only does that sort of thing when it has some a moment of leisure.  An interruption in its feeding might explain the relatively intact state of Robert.



#3 EihortBroodling

EihortBroodling

    Master

  • Banned
  • Pip
  • 48 posts

Posted 19 November 2017 - 05:39 AM

I recall once running the module with the Thing trapped in the attic but able to reach out of open/broken windows and strike down into the yard.

Other ideas:

THE THING INSIDE/OUTSIDE

It's unable to enter the warded lower part of the house, but the attic isn't warded.

The Thing isn't free with Rupert's death. Not yet. A tether remains, keeping it within the vicinity of its point of entry into our world (the house). It avoids getting too close to the point of entry for fear of being trapped by the ritual, but cannot move far way from that point. The tether will stretch thinner and longer with every passing day until it snaps.

RED JAKE SURVIVAL

Dodge?
Luck rolls, baby!
Thing was killing that raccoon, or something else, and he saw it do that. Ran right into house.

POWDER/SOLIDITY

I have always, to the best of my recollection, run it with the same idea you have suggested here--minimum damage from normal weapons when the Powder of Ibn Ghazi is used.

On one of the several times I ran this adventure, a PC fired a small harpoon (yes, harpoon) through the Thing before it had solidified.
The projectile killed another PC on the other side of the magic circle. A random roll determined that his body fell across the circle.

Another PC jumped into the Thing, sacrificing himself to give the other a chance to re-chalk and keep chanting

Harpoon-boy died a moment later of a gunshot wound to the head from one of the surviving PCs.

The two guys left alive then set fire to the place and fled the state.

Good times.

#4 boulash

boulash

    Master

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 28 posts
  • LocationHamburg, Germany

Posted 19 November 2017 - 12:17 PM

1) this is only a problem if you consider the narrator to be entirely reliable. I can see a lot of reasons why he wouldn't be :) So maybe the creature never actually left the house and went straight to the attic, the narrator thought it did leave the house.

 

2) the creature was confined to the house (until Rupert's death that is) but couldn't get in the rooms because of the wards (which only leaves the attic). Once it's released it can go wherever it wants, just not in the rooms (you could also imagine the bonds weakening gradually so that the creature has to stay in the vicinity of the house for some time).

 

For the other stuff, think big, this little scenario is a goldmine of hooks for further stories. If playing with beginners, railroad a little or tell them explicitly that not all information is relevant to the present case. If playing with more experienced players, roll with it and forget about the lurker, send them somewhere else (mine tried to steal the De Vermiis Mysteris form Armitage's vault and ended up in Dunwich...)


Sanity is way overrated