Sunday, March 13, 2016

Session Capture: Varens Session 7, Wherein our Heroes Have a Downtime Episode

Used my scanner for the first time
today to put the map pieces together.
My players told me they didn't even
understand the map until seeing it
stitched together like this.
Downtime and preparation episode. A bunch of dominoes being lined up so the players have free choice over which to knock down!

The Cast

  • Sophie - A young artificer girl, the opposite of self-aware, but wants to be recognized as a genius of her time. Her poor social graces put a damper on the possibility of that ever happening. She doesn't care. Results should speak for themselves. Her player decided to buy off Curiousness and Stubbornness disadvantages between sessions to give a little bit more differentiation between herself and Wynter, and mostly due to the fact that the disadvantages were starting to detract from the picture of the character that was emerging.
  • Stuart ("Corduroy") - an Innkeeper saddled with the family business, but would much rather travel the world. He can't part outright with the family tavern out of respect for his family, but he needs to find and hire people that he can trust to take care of it in his absence. Additionally, he will need to gather enough money to pay them in advance; he doesn't know how profitable the inn will be in his absence, nor how long he'll be gone.
  • Wynter - a Scholar who has just wandered into the town of Wood's Edge, she is just going along with whatever Sophie and Stuart are doing. She's not from around there and doesn't know what's what, and as a result, is unfortunately using Sophie as a barometer for "normal".


Important Places Key:
Pink Trapezoid: Jail
Pink Circle: Mugging Incident
Light Green Field: Park
Western White Box: Dick and Kelly's Gate
Northern Orange Star: Wall that needs Repairs
On Day 6, the battle ended at 0600. To make bookkeeping easier, our players decided this was a day of rest.
On Day 7, our players take stock of what happened. Corduroy's inn was looted during the incident, so he decided to pay his upkeep [failed his claim to hospitality roll; on the other hand, Sophie didn't, which is a little funny].
Corduroy remembered the Dinoman that they held captive in the bar, and wanted to track down where it was, so off he went. Wynter decided to acclimate herself to the town alone, so she went by herself. Sophie was left to her own devices and decided to partake in a little chemistry on her downtime so that she could produce another small potion.
Corduroy wandered over to the jail [I told the player that this was probably the best place to find the prisoner] where he meets Fournival, the guardian Gargoyle who watches over the inmates. Fournival doesn't communicate verbally, and his eyes do not move, but he seems to be able to communicate complicated information through the use of body language (such as shrugging, for example) as well as signals and gestures.
Corduroy didn't know the name of the prisoner when signing in on the guest sheet. Fournival, who happened to like Corduroy [there was a really good reaction roll] didn't mind showing him around the small jailhouse.
When Corduroy saw the Dinoman, he pointed and said, "That's him!" Fournival shrugged in response as if to say, "Those cells are for women. If your friend is over there, then you probably mean 'her'."
Taking a walk over to the cell, they communicate amicably and Corduroy tries to make friends by bringing her food. The reaction is neutral, even despite a large penalty to the reaction roll. We learn that the Dinoman's name is "Georgette".
Corduroy asks about when he can talk to Georgette again, but Fournival makes a motion as if to sigh and look upward, intimating something along the lines of, "Well, it depends on her trial and sentencing. Technically their attack was a total flop and without a single casualty on our side; are they going to attack us again? Anyway, her trial is in a few days, so we'll know then. It was a pleasure meeting you."
Meanwhile Wynter wanders around and meets Cathy, a Leprechaun. Cathy looks at Wynter's clothing and can tell she is a foreigner. "Foreigners like you stick out like a sore thumb, and people will want to take advantage of that," she says, "let me borrow $100 and I'll get you something more suitable to your surroundings; just wait here and I'll bring it back!" Wynter agreed this was a good idea and gave Cathy the money [Wynter failed a Detect Lies versus Fast-Talk contest.]
Sophie went to hang out with Dick and Kelly at the West gate. There she found out that, from the warchest worth approximately $60,000, the Militia was entitled to 10%... which basically meant that the share for Cordury, herself, and Wynter was a little over $26. The city government decided to keep the majority of the money, but Dick and Kelly really need $44,000 to repair the North Wall and the Western Gate. Well, as a matter of fact, after speaking with Hombrea, they want to wall up the Western Gate, and in its place build a new North Gate [These figures actually came from Low-Tech Companion 3]. The North Gate will help with the new road that the Merchant's Guild is trying to get built so that they don't need to take the long dangerous route through the forest anymore.

Sophie asked Kelly and Dick [Contact advantage] for a spare torch and some oil, and decided to visit the bottle shop to discuss how long she thinks it would take to burn down his store. Corduroy finds her here, and decides to take her away, and meet with Hombrea about the road surveying assignment.

Meanwhile, Wynter decides to wander away and has a conversation with some pigeons. The pigeons aren't very informative, but recognize her as an outsider too. Baffled that she can talk with them, they ask about her favorite kinds of crumbs and trash. This starts a long conversation.

Hombrea tells Corduroy they will be escorting two merchants, Michelle, and her partner Vincent, as they survey the area to measure it for roads. The price to build this six-mile road is estimated to be a little more than $100,000, but the savings in money, time, and lives (in that order, according to the Merchant Guild) is well worth the investment. Corduroy is able to secure support [using merchant guild rank] in sundries and transportation. The result is a very well-furnished elven carriage with two draft horses and several days of supplies. Hombrea hopes Michelle and Vincent will be here today, and asks Corduroy to host them at his inn.
Michelle's back is covered in golden veins
where her shell was cracked in what looks
like an incredibly violent impact.

The party regroups later and relates the day's events. Michelle and Vincent arrive later that evening around the time the carriage and draft horses arrive. Vincent is a gnome who speaks a mile a minute in a very polite way using sir or ma'am at the end of almost every sentence, but repeating what he has to say often in the same turn of phrase. He hates being interrupted. Michelle is astoundingly intelligent and a shrewd expert of a business owner. And she is a Coleopteran. She is shy about talking near humans because of her scary voice, so Vincent does most of the talking for her. They sign back and forth so she doesn't need to talk. She is too tired to speak, so Vincent and Mary prepare her room so that she can go to sleep. 

It is evening on the 7th day.

After Action Report

  • I forgot what Obliviousness meant for a while, so I wasn't engaging it enough. Wynter's player did a good job of role-playing a dumbstruck foreigner when I thought of hooks to engage it.
  • Speaks With Animals is a weird, but extremely cool advantage. It opens so many doors that I'm dumbfounded trying to think of ways to make it work well within the campaign. However, I definitely want it to work just because of how cool it is.
  • The rank in the Merchant's Guild was especially helpful. Horses and carriages are really expensive.
  • My players were worried about splitting up in a meta sense. However, in this session, it felt reasonable.

Rules Commentary

Dungeon Fantasy 17: Guilds opens up a lot of doors... especially if you have a lot of rank. Sophie has been saving money for a long time to get away from this town, but Corduroy just had to ask. No real confusing rules came up, however, I spent a long time calculating realistic dollar amounts with Low-Tech Companion 3 as a guide, so there is that. The sums for the road and for the gates, as well as the wall all come from that.

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