Jump to content

Mutterings from Providence

Sign in to follow this  
  • entries
    9
  • comments
    0
  • views
    10,599

About this blog

The writings of one student in Providence, Rhode Island (and Providence Plantations, The State of).

Entries in this blog

 

Ad-Hoc Scenario: The Voyage of The Caledonian

This past week, I ran a completely ad-hoc scenario as the result of a poor decision at two in the morning. In all, we had playing: James Wilkinson, Alabamian prizefighter with an EDU of 19 (!) Cecile Bardot, French mystic and accountant for Wilkinson Xavier Billingsford, British drug smuggler and "legitimate businessman" Walter Williams, Billingsford's chemist and occult dilettante pursuing a panacea

All have booked passage on the RMS ​Caledonian, en route to British Togoland from Glasgow.   I had about twenty minutes to make up a scenario, so this is what I got: the Captain, one Capt. MacClean, is a cultist of Arwassa, and is planning to sacrifice the passengers and a bunch of sheep to summon his dark god. All of the crew and four of the passengers are also in on it.   I set about planning by making a timeline, and filling in what they can detect. First night was drumming, from a preparatory ritual. Second night, the cultists summon some byakhees. Third night, the sacrifice takes place. The players had some interesting encounters with other passengers, and I got some experience improvising. I have made one of the players hate forevermore a crew member/cultist named Marco, who forced him to swab the deck in exchange for letting the party into the hold. In the end, they didn't manage to stop the summoning, but they all enjoyed it.

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

Cross-Group Game Session for HotOE

I'm currently running two groups on HotOE, and they've just about finished the Lausanne chapter. Spoilers to follow.         All in all, I'm happy with the way things are going, and I'm looking forward to the Milan chapter, as well as certain events on the train preceding it.

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

Horror on the Orient Express - Dramatis Personae

Well, my two groups running HOtOE are kicking off! Here's a rundown of who's on this deadly voyage:
Group A Theodore "Teddy" Heavens, 14-year-old French war orphan and Scout. Ward of Bertrand FitzRoy. Bertrand FitzRoy, Vicar of Bickenhill, fifth son of the 7th Duke of Grafton. Worked with Acerbi on a charity project following the Great War. Former boxer (in his Cambridge days). Thanda-Nang, Burmese barrister and successful defender of Alberta Acerbi in the suit that won her her restaurant. Alberta Acerbi, one-handed Fascist Italian chef, owner of Trattoria Di Acerbi. Patron of Guliano Schifanella. Guliano Schifanella, Futurist sculptor and former ski trooper. Fellow Fascist of Acerbi. Aileen Clery. Former member of the Sisters of Mercy, now administrates a soup kitchen, working with FitzRoy.

Group B Col. Sir Dr. Marius Villiers, OBE (Ret.) Former member of the Royal Engineers. Retired to country home near Smethwick (near Coventry). Ieuan Cadwallader, current member of the Royal Engineers, former colleague of Villiers. Son of the Lord Carnarvon. Richard Bishop, Detective Inspector in the Warwickshire Constabulary, former Great War flying ace. Cousin of Ieuan. Brian Murphy, Detective Inspector on exchange from the NYPD. Keen on 'modern policing methods' and forensics. Martin Fotheringay, acerbic Vicar of Smethwick, and expert in crochet. Mediocre violinist. Edward Fotheringay, brother of Martin, GP in Smethwick, and avid runner.

I'm looking forward to the campaign. We've got some good characters, and I've enjoyed the session we've had.   Spoilers follow.   Group B has played through a session, and they have been introduced to Professor Smith. They were all sat down to dinner at Villiers' residence, in early 1922, and suddenly there is a knock at the door. Smith! He is sopping wet, and needs to call a mechanic. He is worried he is being followed. Suddenly, darkness descends outside, blotting out the full moon. The phone is cut! The lights go out! And then, coming through a back door, are a few servants of Glaaki, after Prof. Smith for prying too far. They manage to fend them off with fire and a hunting rifle, hastily fetched, all the while provoking Villiers to cry "my house!" as his home receives some bullet wounds and scorch marks, and several glass items are comically shattered.   After the fight, time passes, and the players are informed that they have become good friends with Prof. Smith over the intervening year, and they go to the lecture. We left off just as they found of his disappearance.

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

One-Sided Character Sheet, Updated for Jazz Age - Feedback?

Here's a Jazz Age version of the one-sided character sheet I made. Due to the smaller space, I did economize skills a bit - I'm still working out what arrangement is best for skills and weapons - you'll note that firearms aren't listed, which is a problem.   I hope it's useful, or that there are ways I can make it useful. I could probably make it take up less space by shrinking the HP and MP blocks, which I feel rarely go all the way up to their full ranges. That would give more space for weapons, and I could put firearms skills there.   charsheet_20s.pdf charsheet_20s.pdf

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

One-sided Character Sheet Design, also Session Report for "The Ballad of Bass Rock"

In the course of developing a sourcebook for CoC in Ancient Mesopotamia, I procrastinated on writing actually useful content by making a character sheet with the skills and characteristics used by the adaptation. Feedback is welcomed! I am thinking of adapting this design to standard Jazz Age Cthulhu as an alternative sheet, because having all of the crucial things on one side is useful, I think. The back is always open for more freeform information, as well as items that don't always come up in play.   charsheet_CI.pdf   On an aside, I think that one of the things that I have learned while working on this text is how many questions I will need to answer. Currently, I am working on a scenario set in the time period to think through everything the sourcebook would need to consider - every time I have to ask a question about the location, or have to look something up about society or practices from that time period, it helps me flesh out what I need to include.   Session Report   As this is the week of Thanksgiving, we weren't going to have our normal Friday meeting. However, earlier today, some of my players contacted me to see if I would run a one-shot - being a glutton for punishment, I agreed and bit the bullet. I purchased The Ballad of Bass Rock (and given the quality, I will definitely work on getting more of Cubicle 7's Cthulhu Britannica line) and ran it for them.   Spoilers, of course, to follow.
    And that's where I ended it. It turns out that while it was a bit more brutal than they expected, and perhaps than I intended, they all enjoyed it, and found it very atmospheric and evocative. I really like this sort of one-shot, where the players are both geographically and temporally constrained, and I felt that it made for a short-sweet scenario. charsheet_CI.pdf

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

Triple Feature Session Report

We've met again! This time there were three groups, and they all went fairly well. Spoilers to follow.   Session 1
They continue on their way through The Rise of Xnaaki out of The Unbound Book, and they have battled their way and had their first encounters with things not entirely ordinary. They've had a fistfight on a train, and have booked into an inn in a town that is fairly desolate. Due to delays on their part, some timeline elements have shifted around, and they have not yet found out exactly what's going on. They have encountered all of the nasty things in the manor, but some further unpleasantness awaits later on.   Session 2
The party continues through MTS Kh-37, and they have spent the first night at the Station. Some of them were affected by the Colour, and they've finally decoded Chirikov's journal. The information was shared relatively widely, and they have not yet decided what their next course of action is. They are currently dismissing some of it as madness, but we'll see when their skepticism breaks down.   Session 3
This group is a group of CoC novices, and I'm running them through The Haunting. It's gone interestingly, as despite my best efforts, they decided to go straight to the house instead of investigating. They didn't find much, but they went upstairs and found the room. No madness with the bed yet, but they did hear thumping and saw blood - they're thoroughly disturbed. They then found the diaries, and then went down to look in the basement. Three out of the four people who went down the stairs botched their DEX rolls to get down safely, and all injured themselves - one person is even unconscious. One of them then tried to take the magic knife out of the building, but got a nice slash across their torso for their trouble. They're on their way to Mass. General for medical care, and that's where I'll be introducing the player who couldn't make it this week.

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

Double-Feature Session Report

Last Friday was the first meeting of the Friday Night Cthulhu games that I'm running in my residential group. I'm running two weekly sessions and a fortnightly session, and they've started off well so far.   Session 1
The first group is running through a scenario (The Rise of Xnaaki) out of The Unbound Book, volume 0, I believe, available in the Files section. It starts with an auction, and goes downhill from there. The group is mixed in experience level, but they are all very into it, and are having a lot of fun with very individual characters. The mythos-y stuff has yet to make a significant appearance, and the experienced players are doing a very good job of setting the tone, and RPing as very normal people who don't know anything about the Mythos. I feel that this is one of the important, and difficult, parts of the game to roleplay, and I think they're doing a great job. We stopped last session in the middle of the beginning of a fistfight on a moving train, and we'll see where they go from there...   Session 2 - Spoilers for MTS Kh-37
The second group is running through Machine Tractor Station Kharkov-37, and had a bit of a rocky start due to late arrivals. Some of the players are more inexperienced, but they're getting better at playing their roles. I'm working on getting it more atmospheric, and I'm going to print out player name-tents to help remind people of who's who.
--SPOILERS--
The group has made it to the station, and is beginning its investigation. They have discovered, but not read, Chirikov's journal, and I'm working on figuring out how to introduce it to them. I feel there's not quite enough paranoia from the members, and I think it's due to their interspersed seating - the TASS agents are mingled with the Red Army chaps, and there's not enough room to plot in private.   This week:
Session 1 continues with its train ride, Session 2 begins to uncover the mystery, and Session 3 commences, investigating the mysteries of The Haunting.

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

First full scenario run with a new group

I'm fairly new to CofC, and I recently finished running the introductory campaign out of the back of Cthulhu Invictus. I'm not sure what I thought of it; it didn't provide too much advice in terms of what to do when the players jump the rails of the fairly linear plot. However, in terms of the players, I was very happy with how it worked out. For a group of players whose primary experience was with Dungeons and Dragons beforehand, they were pretty good at changing gears to be a bit less hack-and-slashy. I was also happy with how well they adapted to the more deadly aspects of the system.   Moving forward, I'm planning on running a few 20's scenarios, and then starting into a larger campaign next semester. I'm lucky enough to go to a university with a library with a copy of Horror on the Orient Express, and the players really want to give it a try, especially before one of them graduates. On the up side, it gives me an excuse to listen to the Innsmouth House recording of the game, which I'd been putting off in hopes of playing it. I have resigned myself to the fact that I won't be able to play it any time soon, so at least I'll be able to run it for a group instead.

Galbraith

Galbraith

 

Beginnings of a sourcebook

I'm going to be writing a sourcebook for CoC games set in Ancient Mesopotamia over the month of November, ostensibly for National Novel Writing Month. As such, I haven't really written much yet, but I have begun to build out the structure so I can figure out what I will have to write. Attached is the file of the latest draft, with a bunch of lipsum crammed in for filler. Hopefully, as I work it over, I'll get a better sense of what's needed, and what makes a good resource for Keepers.

Galbraith

Galbraith

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.