A playtest of something called, at least in theory, Dark Waters. Re-written somewhat between the last session and this one.
Not yet. We’ll be throwing this out to try publication, and an any-time guess is a good guess.
Yes. It took two sessions.
Follow-up. Always two sessions?
It could have been done in one. It felt a little like I was padding towards the end, but the players seemed happy enough.
Massive spoilers. Players currently playing should read past this point.
I had expected the group to try to explore and deal with the bandits without Ernakt, but I was prepared for the group fight as well. The important part was Ernakt’s battle score. Zelpha’s ritual should have been more important and taken magic points from participants. This would have given a reason for the nymph to talk to someone with a high POW instead of me waiting until Zelpha was out of the way, as she was the obvious person to talk to Iyarala. An alternative is that Iyarala talks to the man with the highest CHA or POW in the party.
Combat is my weakest point. I didn’t take advantage of the spells that the bandits had, but then again, those who were not in a fight with the adventurers were less important, and Ernakt’s battle roll and the counter-ambush situation were dealing with the problem. Laika did use her Absorption spell, and I should have valued that more by attacking people with magic, but… well, it was over quickly, and combat’s the part I’m still learning. That’s a GM thing not a scenario thing.
I am particularly proud of the oinkarina, the pig call that Laika was given, and of the change to Jon PolJoni, who had the Water Rune tattooed onto his cheek, where it now shimmers, and took Water as one of his own Runes. The Praxian was stunned by the naiad.
Beyond the combat, which rolled through pretty well but I felt I could have practised more, I’m very pleased with this session. I’d drawn up the main village map, so people had a better idea of where they were, and all the plot threads fitted and came together, and the players had remembered what happened from the week before, which meant it was not too muddling.
The only thing that the group did that really surprised me was sending for the fisher folk, so I made a judgement call that they were going to stay where they had been left, and that’s going into the notes. Sending for Ernakt was good – dealing with the bandits was really he only way to get his authority into the area, because they were the thing he was after.
Ortasis never really got ‘justice’, but that was another GM thing. I just forgot to have Ernakt rule on the matter. I should have had Hengrast roll on Honour to decide whether Ortasis had had a fair moot-trial the first time around (nope, but it WAS a trial, still) and given him the chance to match Orate vs Orate with the farmer.