Jump to content

Blog DAR

Sign in to follow this  
  • entries
    6
  • comments
    4
  • views
    4,963

Entries in this blog

 

Session #5 - Ross' Corner, IL

So, this came after a extra long break due to various work and recreation conflicts among the group. The game opened with the somewhat belated relaization that the group hadn't utilized thier downtime very effectively (I gave them the chance to do research, but nobody did so) and it was a great example of "time passes quicker than you realized" - just like it happens in real-life sometimes.   They realized that they hadn't checked up on poor Rupert Merriweather in awhile, so Luck rolls to see who dropped by first and it was Helen, the Antiquitarian who is potentially infected with Opener of the Ways ichor. So in she popped to his now private room (that raised a couple of eyebrows, those were/are expensive) and was surprised to find her old acquaintance Captain Ronald Hooper - formerly of Military Intelligence (even some involvement with the Naval "P-Division" which she wasn't supposed to even know about but her expertise with codes and role during the Great War had revealed the name though little more). Evidently Mr. Merriweather was an employee of his family, and he had known him for years. There was some back-and-forth, while Rupert lay there in a coma, and Helen caught a level of suspicious interest from the Captain even while she caught him making some sort of sigil or something on Rupert's forehead right before he left. Trying to discover what the Captain had done, Helen was evidently able to shift her perceptions enough to see an aura of white light around Rupert.   Alarmed, and at a loss to explain ("A gas leak..?" - the player is playing the investigator with a great faith in science and the rational), Helen called on Ophelia (the Medium) at her apartment to discuss matters. Meanwhile the Michael (the PI) got a message from the Captain, using a code that meant to contact him immediately. Meeting briefly, Michael filled the Captain in on what had been going on, also explaining why he'd been asking about his copy of De Vermis Mysteries - to which the Captain indicated he would investigate what he could but that he wasn't thrilled to grant access to such a tome to the charlatan that Ophelia was held out to be (noting Michael's suggestion that she was anything but) and urging Michael to keep an eye on Helen as "there was something odd about her now." Rendezvousing with Helen and Ophelia at the hospital, Michael declined to mention his conversation with the Captain - and the three went to see Rupert in his coma and tried to have Helen reconstructed what she had done and perceived.   Trying carefully to do what she did before, Helen managed to shift her perceptions again - noting the white light around Rupert - but at the same time noting that (unlike the nurse passing by, or the rest of the room) Michael was light by a fiery corona of grey flame or light, while Ophelia's locket (her Favored Item, that she cannot open, cannot remember where it comes from, but knows it vitally, vitally important to her and that she must not lose it) was, for lack of a better term, "hyper-defined" to the extant that it brought even Ophelia into sharper focus. These last two revelations proved too much, and Helen was shaken back into her normal perceptions. She relayed this information to Michael and Ophelia, and Ophelia was able to see just how closely Rupert was to death - perhaps staying present out of sheer force of will.   The decision was made to travel to the old ruined farmhouse immediately, and a call was placed to Luigi (the Mafioso), letting him know.   Noting some of the troubles that the group had had transporting everyone to and fro relative to the old Corbitt House, Luigi asked around if there was a truck he could borrow. The Luck roll was failed, so of course there was one - complete with a dead body wrapped in a rug in back that needed to be disposed of. With a smile that looked more like a grimace, he was happy to help the family out with the clean-up. After a little more prep on everyone's part, the group headed up to Ross' Corner, IL on the Wisconsin border. The trip itself was uneventful, and they found the long abandoned farmhouse with little difficulty - though they were not pleased that it was so exposed to the road (as well as their passage through the long-overgrown drive.   Investigating the outside, they noted the occult symbols on the lintels, as well as the somewhat forced back door. They also discovered a dead raccoon, killed in curious fashion that had the Investigators dealing with a sense of foreboding - discussion of the possibility of another Opener of the Ways being present was bandied about. After some discussion, the group used their keep to enter the front door, and explored the two rooms to little effect - noting the possible presence of a hobo. Though, in doing so, they heard noises coming from the basement. Slowly, Luigi, Henry (the handyman), and Ophelia all made their way down the narrow cellar steps - only to be attacked by a crazed hobo hiding in a corner.   Luigi was easily able to handle himself, quickly and brutally subduing the man, who babbled incoherently, while the party tried to decide what to do. Perhaps sparked by something that was said, the hobo sprang up again and he and Luigi were soon wrestling for control of Luigi's sawed-off shotgun. In the fight, even as Henry tried to help, the hobo somehow managed to turn the shotgun on the handyman at pointblank range and unleash both barrels!   To little effect (minimum damage on both shots, 8 points total - not even a major wound) - and in a rage Henry lashed out with his axe and killed him. Completely justified in his own mind, Henry paid little attention to the rest of the party as he calmly picked the buckshot out of his chest, using the hobo's soupcan to collect it all. The rest of the party was somewhat shaken by not only the sight of Henry's calm in the face of his wounds, the utter lack thereof (Luigi especially would have expected Henry to have been blown in half), but also the grim realization that they were all now murders or accessories to murder if they didn't turn Henry into the authorities...   Pushing that uncomfortable thought aside for the moment, the party decided to investigate the attic as it was the one location un-searched thusfar - so Michael climbed up and pushed his way into the opening - and falling back and the snarling and scrabbling Thing That Could Not Quite Be Seen rushed toward him. Landing with a hard thump, the party listened as the Thing pounced and snarled - and wondered what they would do next...   And that's where I called it!   This was a fun session, people are all starting to freak out because they don't quite know what to expect. Helen and Henry's characters have mysteries associated with them that are slowly starting to play out, and there are hints that things are different about Ophelia and Michael - Luigi seems to be the most normal of the bunch! I've now managed to introduce Captain Hooper, he's my planned "patron" for the group, his family fortune is tied up in a series of organizations that are (quietly) quite sincerely dedicated to fighting the occult and the unnatural. He and Michael (and Sergeant Cullen, who saved Henry's life in the trenches) all had quite the experiences in the tunnels and catacombs of Paris during the Great War, and the Captain has been much more active in his family's legacy than his father was.   And Luigi has a secret also, it just hasn't come up yet!   D.

DAR

DAR

 

Session #4 - R.I.P. Walter Corbitt, Esq.

Well, had the 4th session yesterday, and everyone enjoyed themselves a great deal. In re-reading the 7E rules, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Indefinite Insanity didn't render a character out-of-commission, merely significantly more emotionally fragile and susceptible to Bout of Madness. This meant that Helen the Antiquarian was still playable if the player wanted to risk it, and she did, so she went along to the Corbitt house where the séance was going to be held.   The investigators showed up at the house, and immediately made for the basement to deal with the flying dagger. Negotiating the stairs proved tricky, as they also wanted to leave Helen upstairs due to her "fragile state" (half HP and Indefinite Insanity) - and poor Helen fainted (Bout of Madness) when she witnessed Ophelia the Medium telekinetically move John the Handyman's axe into the basement rather than throw it. But, they discovered the hidden crawlspace and the "Chapel of Contemplation" and after having to deal with the rats that swarmed him (to little effect), John the Handyman soon opened the Chapel and...   Was promptly Dominated by Corbitt (though the players all thought he'd been possessed).   Luckily, Luigi the Mafioso tackled him and managed to hold him down long enough for the Domination to pass. After this, they entered the Chapel and immediately decided that they needed to burn the body - which prompted an immediate dagger attack that Impaled Ophelia the Medium (luckily, it's Pulp Cthulhu!). With this, they quickly started gather materials to set light to their bier, at which point Corbitt decided to attack physically.   Cue a Bout of Madness when John the Handyman blew his roll (Fear of Zombies inflicted a Penalty die on his Sanity check) and he not only went Indefinitely Insane, but went berserk as the "red mist rose" and he started yelling about Huns and trenches, - which went fine until Luigi the Mafioso gave up on trying to wrestle the Corbitt and rolled an Impale with his Police Special, drilling Corbitt between the eyes.   Meanwhile, Ophelia the Medium was quite annoyed because she destroyed the papers on the table trying to gather them up, and she is quite worried that they are what the party was looking for.   John the Handyman turned on Luigi the Mafioso in his Red Rage and basically beat all-but-to-death - reducing him to 0HP but failing to inflict a major wound. All the while of which the two women continued to try and start a fire under Corbitt's body to burn it and hopefully stop what they believed was another possession. After dealing with Luigi, John rounded on Ophelia the Medium, she managed to Dodge his bull's rush, which resulting in him plowing into the wall where he recovered his senses (the Bout terminating that round).   The party relaxed a bit when Helen the Antiquarian carefully removed the chain and jewel from around Corbitt's neck and the body crumbled to nothingness. They extinguished the fire, carefully replaced the boards in the basement that had hidden the Chapel, and returned home because Ophelia the Medium decided that doing a Séance again so quickly would be a poor idea...   Some Thoughts:
Wow, I totally missed that luck replenishes after each session, not after each chapter... Everyone is going to get a massive luck boost! While I was originally going to move directly into Edge of Darkness, I wanted to give the group a bit of a break. There have been many skill checks, some Sanity gains, but with two out of four/five Investigators suffering from Indefinite Insanity, I decided that since we might have as long as month till the next game (schedules this time of year suck) that we'd say the Investigator's get a month's break for Downtime - and both Helen and John managed to shake their Indefinite Insanity's so they'll be much less fragile during the trip to Wisconsin. Helen's Bouts of Madness resulted in her initial love of science and dawning of a new age turned into a dreaded knowledge of things man did not want to discover or know, plus a mania for opening things. John's Bout of Madness resulted in a tweak of focus with his Favored possession (the pocket bible which saved his life during the Great War by blocking a bullet) in that it doesn't remind him that G-d protects folks, but that the dead will walk again on Judgement Day, and the fear that that day has come. (Dovetailing with his Phobia of Zombies, and the cause of his Bout).
 
In any case, much fun was had and everyone is looking forward to the next installment.   TTFN!   D.

DAR

DAR

 

Playing with amending Backstory as the result of insanity

So, I have to say that this is one of the things I've been most looking forward to - the addition of concrete backstory elements in character creation was great, but the suggestion if not mandate to mess with these in some way when characters go insane is a fantastic.   So, I had three characters go insane last session (two temporarily and one indefinitely) - so here is how I resolved to amend thier Backstories.   Luigi, the Mafia hitman, was the simplest. He's a Honorable as a trait, so I simply added the PC who slew the Opener of Ways (Dimensional Shambler) as an Important Person because he now owed his life to this man. It's basic, kind of boring, but will continue to provide the character a hook to continue with this group once the initial adventure is finished.   That man, Henry, the Handyman started off the game with a phobia of zombies and the walking dead (Backstory, as combination of his War Experience and Mythos Experience he witnessed the dead rising in the trenches) so I actually added a scar to his story - a mysterious, large Y-shaped scar that spans his torso. He can't really remember when or where he got it, probably the Great War, he just knows that he doesn't like thinking about it and tries to ignore it all the time...   This ties into this characters secret pulp nature that I have not revealed to the player, but that from the look on his face he probably guessed at least part of it when I told him this.   Lastly, Helen, the Antiquarian, has gone indefinitely insane. She almost died, but blew all her Luck (ala the Pulp rules) to prevent this from happening, but was also essentially drenched in the blood and ichor from the Opener of the Ways. Her Backstory was amended with the note in Encounters with Strange Entities: "The Opener of the Way, it killed me, but I passed through it and I did not die."   For this character this actually lets me start to build up a pulpier character (and/or watch her descend into madness and worse) and I plan to start building up some abilities that riff off her comingling of blood and essence with said Opener of Ways. The player struggles a bit with role-playing, so I'm hoping that this provides some meat for her Investigator/Hero to grow and be more than simply a researcher.   TTFN!   D.

DAR

DAR

 

Session #2 - "Der ain't nuttin in dat room but drippin blood and an angry bed"

Today was a good day and everyone had loads of fun. First the PI bribed the desk sergeant enough money to actually just give him the file on the police raid (Based on the contents I'm surprised it hadn't "gone missing" before frankly) thenhe got called off to work (because the player had to go to work) and the rest of the party tromped over to the Corbitt house to investigate it - being slightly spooked to find out that it had been all locked up again (they currently suspect the missing pastor from the Church of Contemplation), breaking in they investigated the ground floor again, and then the upper floor - where the antiquarian and the Mafioso were first puzzled by blood dripping from the ceiling, and then after hearing noises outside the window went over to investigate - both then being knocked out by the moving bed...   Cue more shenanigans that finally culminated with the local beat cop interrogating them, falling for the "we're looking to buy the place and accidently broke a window" (the APP80/Charm75 Femme Fatale Occultist batted her eyelashes at him) but escorted them away after the Mafioso managed to stealth his way past him after nearly being knocked out of the window by the table again. The next day the antiquarian met with the owner of the Corbitt House, Mr. Knott, while the Mafioso tried to discover what he could about the Macarrio's by talking to "Father Matteo" his local priest who seemed convinced that they'd gotten what they had coming, while the Medium/Occultist wandered over to the ruins of the Chapel of Contemplation and discovered it's secrets - which also included that many, many more people had died there and for many more years than was in the police report - most of the Africans. On a whim I merely placed it on the unspecified edge of Lincoln Park (the actual park), which also means it is built near to the mass graves of cholera/typhus victims.   They continue to build up an idea via rumors and heresay that both the Corbitts, plus Marion Allen, were very bad news - and that Church was as bad or worse. They are definitely getting a bit paranoid with the level of cover-up regarding the raid, and with the vehemence with which people speak poorly of everyone involved 10+ years on.   The party still has not gotten back into the basement of the Corbitt House...   D.   EDIT: On a last note, one of players today not only organized a player's journal to help her organize her own thoughts, but also spent several hours putting together her character's handwritten journal (this included a trip to two stores to find the right leather journal...). She is loving the mystery aspect of the game and is quite excited to be doing this level of detail work for her character. She's also going to pick up an appropriate locket to represent her characters favored/key possession.   D.

DAR

DAR

 

Session #3 - The Opener of the Ways

The game picked up again at around 2AM of the same evening that they had gone to speak with Mr. Knott, the owner of the Corbitt House (see above). I had decided that things need a jolt of energy, so given the determined (and in the case of one person, repeated) poking around despite clearly haunted happenings, Things Got Real.   The Medium and the Antiquitarian woke to the sounds of something mving around down in the foyer (the Mafioso fumbled his Listen roll and was sleeping quite deeply, while the Handyman sleeps above the garage) - and investigated only to find an Opener of the Ways shambling its way up the stairs!   (Yeah, it you can't scare 'em off, kill 'em off - besides, there is at least one scary one aka The Medium)   The rest was a comedy of errors in some ways.   The Medium made her San check, and while the Antiquarian failed hers, she also failed her Idea roll, so while the Antiquarian threw vases and a table at the Opener, the Medium unloaded her single shot, and the used her telekinesis to knock back down the stairs when it continued to advance. The Medium then fumbled, and managed to somehow fall down the stairs herself.   William the butler appeared, only to be casually backhanded out of the way by the beast, to suffer a broken back and neck. The Mafioso finally woke up and charged out (also making his Sanity check) as the Medium used her Cthulhu Mythos to spontaneously use magic in an attempt to dismiss it - while that didn't work, it did refuse to attack her and focused all of it's attention on the others present. He managed to get a couple of shots off, but did not managed to bring the monster down.   The Opener of the Ways blink/blurred/jumped to the top of the stairs and grabbed the Antiquarian while the Mafioso decided to try to kick in the "nads" instead of shooting it (perhaps not the greatest choice, but...) - only to watch in as that had no effect and the beast all but gutted the Antiquarian. At this point the Handyman had finally managed to come running in, with a cording axe in hand and managed to impale it on the first strike - definitively gutting it!   Unfortunately, it also bleed out and dissolved into the unconscious and on the brink of death with massive open wounds Antiquarian - and both the Handyman and the Mafioso failed their San checks when they watched as the ichor was adsorbed into the wounds with the same unwholesome shimming and blurring effects that the beast had displayed. They both went temporarily insane, the handyman fainting, the Mafioso becoming massively paranoid for a short period of time.   At about the same time the cook and the maid ventured forth, say the body of the butler, and promptly blew their San checks, also fainting and having hysterics. Managing to get the Antiquarian into bed, and treating her wounds, a local police officer showed up because of the commotion, who then called the sergeant, who eventually called the Detective because things where just too chaotic and weird. Especially when the Antiquarian woke up, while this vile ichor flowing through her veins, promptly blew her Sanity check, and then went Indefinitely insane, attempting to rip open her bandages in order to reach inside of herself and hold herself together because "she was fraying"   This required the Mafioso to hold her down, just as the maid recovered and entered, who then freaked out seeing "that Eye-talion mobster" holding her bloody, half-naked employer down in bed...   (This is where the sergeant gave up and called the Detective, also the Handyman was able to remember the name of the Antiquarian's psychoanalyst who came over and started given all of the women things to calm them down...)   After some interrogation, where conflicting stories ended up giving the impression that the Mafioso was the Antiquarian's secret lover, the police finally left and the party was able to get some rest and peace (admittedly, some of it with drugs).   The next week was taken up with talking to Mr Knott (who agreed after a handful of days thought and inquiry) to allow the Medium to "hold her séance or whatever and get to the bottom of whatever plagued the house", reading the Corbitt Diaries where the Medium figured what it was that had attacked them, researching the history of the Corbitt House some more and coming up with a plethora of articles, and healing up from all the damaged that they took.   We'll be picking up as they decide to investigate the Corbitt House further, most likely venturing into the basement again given what they have learned about Walter Corbitt's will.   Some Thoughts On 7E and Pulp Cthulhu-   Combat was quite easy and flowed very nicely, the Pulp rules made it survivable where it would have otherwise like have been lethal. I bulked up Opener a bit by giving a 7point Flesh Ward, but overall it was challenge without being a potential party wipe.   The new Sanity mechanics are fun and also flowed pretty well once I got my mind around the changes. I'm looking forward to tweaking the details of the three characters who suffered Insanity - the Handyman (who is phobic of the walking dead) is now unable to ignore the curious y-scar that covers most of his chest, I'm not sure what will happen with the Mafioso or the Antiquarian. I am going to use this situation to give the Antiqutarian some potential pulpy mystic abilities of some sort if she chooses to develop them.   The entire group had a blast and is looking forward to the next session.   D.

DAR

DAR

 

Session #1 - Your friend, Mr. Rupert Merriweather is in the hospital...

I had a flash of inspiration as I was figuring out how the group knew each other (some did, some didn't), and decided to run The Haunting and Edge of Darkness as one longer, interlinked scenario.

I led with Edge of Darkness, and the quest giver mentioned that he feared that you would need hidden papers that belonged to the former leader of his group. Quest-Giver is lingering to allow some additional time to do research that leads to Haunting. Said former leader lived for a period of time in the house from Haunting for reasons. I kind of mixed the timelines up a bit as I riffed on the history from both Haunting and Edge when one player (the Occultist) talked to one of her contacts who was horrified that she was evening thinking about around the affairs of said deceased leader - and gave some details of the history of Haunting that should to lead to further investigation. Since they haven't done any real research on the inhabitants of the Haunting yet, I can tweak the dates to make sense.

Comments were made that leader of the group and former inhabitant of the house had been, *ahem*, cohabitating together - And Things Were Said About That In Polite Society.

My "problem" is that the Antiquarian is running down a relatively useless rabbit hole trying to translate the hieroglyphics on the gold box after blowing their roll, and the pushed roll, to read them and ignoring a series of other clues that they could be investigating (and that would probably give them the translation also) - this also keep her driver, the Handyman, occupied because she forgot to let him go off and help the others. The Agency Detective and the Hitman found the location of the house in their investigations and decided to investigate (by the flames of their zippo lighters because neither had come prepared), were attacked, and fled.  
I'm leaving Marion Allen as the head of the college group, but added that he was living with a Corbitt (that's where I messed up timelines a bit in my riff, so I've added a mysterious, previously unknown nephew who took over the house shortly after Corbitt's death and who then disappears from history after Allen murdered). I'm envisioning him as a protégé of Corbitt, who may very well have been involved with getting the gold box. Perhaps there was a falling out, I'm going to kind of leave it a mystery to be explored later or invented as needed in the moment.   I'm doing a last bit of research over the next week, but at the moment I'm thinking of placing further north, into the Evanston area perhaps. I may simply just place it further west as well, but I think keeping an urban feel is important to contrast with the rural house the Dark Brotherhood was using...   The Mafioso is also somewhat freaking out trying to figure out what this Rupert M. guy was doing that his boss owed him a favor as "a friend of the family" - again, to be left for later to figure out or make up as inspired if I need it.

All-in-all, everyone seemed to enjoy their first day of playing - so it's a win.

D.

DAR

DAR

Sign in to follow this  
×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.