Tuesday, June 16, 2020

WoAF - Flagstaff to Ely - Planned Route

"The Way of All Flesh" is my current (and first) Cosmic Sci-Fi RPG Campaign using Elthos RPG and the Mythos Machine. The adventures thus far have been recorded on audio, but not released (due to low quality audio in many cases, so quite a bit of editing would be required).  However, I have sporadically given brief a synopsis of several game sessions, and intend to continue to do so going forward.

The Black Wind V Expedition began at the Kitt Peak Observatory in Arizona. The intended goal is to find the source of mysterious radio transmissions that have been triangulated at a location just west of the Salt Flats near Salt Lake City, Utah.

This is post-World War III (aka "The Ultra-War") America.  It's not a pretty sight.  But Civilization, under the banner of the New Federation, is on the mend.  People are optimistic.  And one of their primary objectives is to rescue stranded peoples and discover whatever pockets of survivors they can out there in the vast and tremendously hostile wastes of North America.  Nothing of the rest of the world is known, as atmospheric radiation has reduced radio transmissions to a pitifully short range, and only for brief bursts.  Hence, the expedition is on its way to discover who may have survived at that inhospitable location in Utah.  Maybe no one.

They set out from Kitt Peak, went to Phoenix where they discovered "The Western Militia" (a military force of US Patriots), then north on 17 to 93 towards Las Vegas. They were warned not to go to Vegas by the Western Militia so they then cut East on Route 40 to Seligman, Arizona where they found a very small community of survivors under the domination of one Jenkin's Mutmaw and his gang of henchmen (who tried to poison them and steal their Armored Ground Vehicle, but failed quite miserably at that). They then continued east to Ashfork, then Williams where they had a pitched battle against two members of the Mutmaw Gang and the Iron Talon Hermit, who miscalculated very badly by completely underestimating their opponents. Pita Tochristor was badly wounded, having been shot twice, but the wounds are not fatal. The Team is now located on a large slab of concrete in Parks, Arizona resting, recovering, and attempting to signal home base back in Tuscon via Ultra-Low Frequency Transmission.

Above is Captain Samwise's intended route from Flagstaff to Ely.

Friday, June 12, 2020

WoAF - Game Session 6

And so the team had one seriously wounded member, Pita Tochristor, who had been shot twice. He was being operated on by LexiB, their Proximatics Industrial Android. The others were deciding what to do next. They had ambushed the ambushers and came out on top. Two of the intruders were shot, and while there were bears and ravenous carrion eating black birds round about, they managed them without too much trouble. Their Armored Ground Vehicle was fully operational, and the machine gun had no problem reducing the enemies to bloody meat sacks. And so they decided to head back to Route 40 on the east side of town to see if they could catch any others attempting to make a getaway. No such luck. No one was seen out that way. Meanwhile Linda and Fred were operating the micro-drones looking for heat signatures in the fog. Linda found one. A man. At this point Fred and "Guns" both began to collapse into a deep sleep from the poison that Jenkins Mutmaw had given them. They slept like babies.

They raced back along the side road off of Route 40 and positioned their vehicle to the north of the man. This was very likely the same person whom Pita had spotted lurking in the trees prior to being shot by the two intruders. They decided it was probably someone who was unrelated to the attackers, and so when they saw the remaining bear approaching the person they used the drones to give him an audio warning about it. The figure dashed through the trees and wound up finding a hole to flee into. They sent a few of the micro-drones down to take a look and found he'd fled down a flight of stairs. They sent the drones in pursuit using infrared tracking. The person ran down a long corridor some 200 feet, and as he did the drones surveilled him carefully. Linda managed to cobble together a picture of him in infrared. There was something strange about his hands. They appeared to be three fingered talons.

The man emerged from the far end of the corridor. He attempted to dash through the trees to get away but the drones had no problem pursuing him. Eventually he gave up and came out from behind a tree with his hands up. They lead him back to the AGV on the east side of the treeline where it had been parked on a dry mud flat. He talked with Samwise, who came out in his heavy body suit to parley with the old timer. As it turns out he was a war vet who had created his own talon hands (they were of remarkable craftsmanship). He offered Samwise a swig of his moonshine, carefully laying the groundwork of trust by appearing untrusting. He explained that he was a Naturalist who believed in the Great Power of Nature. To show this power he raised his talon in the air and shot out an arc of lightning into the sky. It began to rain. The black birds gathered on the trees behind him. The bear approached from the woods. The old timer asked Samwise a lot of questions about the East coast civilization, and pretended to be interested in joining the Federation. He wanted above all to get inside the AGV.

Iron Talon Hermit
Samwise, wisely, began to see that this fellow as not necessarily friendly. He pulled out his Lewiston Ray Pistol, but the Iron Taloned Hermit feigned surprise and shock at this betrayal of their friendship, and insinuated that the iron chain he had removed from his waist was to handle the approaching bear. This was a lie. But Samwise wasn't sure. He couldn't tell what the man was up to. And so he backed away and then turned to run.

The rain had gotten heavy, and the flat filled up with six inches of water, and the mud became a serious impediment. Snakes in swarms came up out of holes in the ground and writhed in the water. The black iron chain came whipping out from behind him and the iron ring just barely missed him on the right. Then again on the left.  Before the worst could happen Samwise called on Linda to mount the machine gun turret and for Pita to make his way to the Plasma Cannon controls, but there was no time for any of that. He dove to the right and skidded on his back through the mud with his gun aimed at the old man - except at this point the bear barred his line of sight. He shot the bear and the scintillating blue beam went straight through its chest. With a moan it fell face first into the mud and stopped moving. And then with speed, and great luck, Samwise took a second shot. This time he hit the old man in the forehead. The beam burned a hole straight through, and caught his hair and beard on fire.  The black iron chain fell from his taloned hands. He went down with a look of extreme disappointment on his face. The ravenous flock of black birds were already devouring the bear's carcass. Samwise shooed them away from the hermit so he could inspect the old man's body and equipment. He took the long iron linked chain. He took the flask of moonshine. He took the two iron talon hands, which he had to saw off the old man's dead arms. And then he returned to the AGV. Alive and well and grateful for good luck. It stopped raining.

He had LexiB analyze the moonshine in the gourde and it turned out to be highly medicinal. He gave some to Pita, Fred and Guns. This helped them revive and so they decided to continue their journey eastward towards Flagstaff. When they got to a flat scrub desert area called Parks about 15 miles east of Williams, they took the opportunity to rest. It was around 10:30pm. Linda sent out a mission update via Ultra Low Frequency transmission to Federation Command. And all was well. They rested and in the morning the air was crisp and clear. They were ready for the next leg of the journey.

Tuesday, June 02, 2020

Warning: Homebrew Is Dangerous

"Gamemasters should not homebrew their RPGs. Ever. The dark fact is, it can be dangerous, both to the GM, and their players. Homebrewing is something that has to be done with extreme caution. It's really super hard. Even absolute Einsteins get blown out of the water by it. Frankly, most GMs should just avoid it or they could get hurt. Seriously. It'll put you in the hospital. I lost a leg during a homebrew in 2005. Look at this stump. And I know how to roll d20's! These days, I tell my friends - just don't do it. Stick with pre-fab rules systems and campaign worlds by reputable companies. Don't take stupid chances. Just say "Hell No" to homebrews. Otherwise you will regret it. They're just too damn - "
  • Pat Mordier, Dec 21, 2018

A recent interview with VB-Wyrde, et al, on Coast to Coast

Coast To Coast - Episode: 38 - The dangerous world of Hombrew RPGs