Friday, March 2, 2012

Overview of my first LotFP session

I was Referee with one player. Player's character is Elf called Evyn.

Pre-game: Her character was wet and cold and got to city of Nurmberg (pseudo-fantasy Europe, Germany). Guard pointed her to a tavern but was really unpleasant and overlooked her (because she's Elf). The tavern is is located in a really bad neighborhood but tavern itself was really nice and owner is also an Elf. There were no other customers even though the prices are cheaper (no one likes Elf in this town and as far as tavern owner knows he's the only one living here).

Game: Character eats and gets to his room. Morning and it is time to pay. Tavern owner is not present and character sees hints of brawl behind the desk. Blood drips are at backroom storage's door and character heads there. In storage there are vegetables, dried meat and wine barrels. One shelf looks like it's been dragged, there are marks on the floor. Evyn moves the shelf and there is narrow staircase down. Character advances it.

Down there is narrow passage and walking it Evyn sees flicker of a torch. She approaches quietly and sees inset where is simple bed and a shelf with few books. Tavern owner the Elf is tied and gagged and city guard is mocking him. Evyn decides to save her kind.

Guard has leather armor (AC 14) but he doesn't see Evyn. Evyn rolls and gets +3 AB and +2 for attacking behind. She shoots guard with bow rolling d20 and gets a result 15 + 5. Guard is hit for 5 damage and is dead (4HP nobody).

Evyn ungags Elf who tells that another guard went somewhere and is returning soon. Evyn hides behind the corner readying her rapier. Guard walks in and Evyn surprises him rolling d20 + AB +3 + Attacking from behind +2 scoring 20. It's a hit against leather armor. Evyn rolls damage. 7 from d8 and guard dies immediately.

Evyn scores 20 experience from two killed guards and loots 10 sp. She unties Elf who is nervous about the bodies but says he'll find someone to hide them (bad neighborhood where money talks). Elf tavern owner also promises that Evyn can stay and eat free as long as she wishes for saving him.
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Thoughts:

We skipped all how character got there and why were he walking to the city and where was she coming. We decided it doesn't matter where she is coming and why, but what will she do when she gets there (game starts).

I decided to test combat rules, that's why the situation was a bit clumsily carried out. But we both agreed a couple of first sessions should be test runs rather than real play. Combat was super fast and easy. Reward was obviously XP, small amount of money and temporary reason to stay in the town (free lodging).

The actual game was not special at all. Pretty stupid actually. Really simple and straightforward but we are at the demo stage. Gotta know the rules before the real adventuring starts, right? Now character has place to stay at town without expenses (motivation to stay longer) so I can focus on the incidents there. I already created NPC relations using Vornheim: The Complete City Kit's NPC relationship generator and somehow will make an adventure out of it. It's about corruption, secrets and horrific secret. It's up to player what she will do about it but I will ask her to play it out (it's mini introduction adventure). After it I will take game to next challenges. Player will meet his company (Referee side-kick character to help in adventures) and later when I get Isle of the Unknown that's where they end up (shipwrecking naturally).

I noticed on problem though. Elf needs 3000 xp. 1HD opponents give 10 XP each so character needs to kill 300 opponents to level up! And combat is lethal. That sucks. Of course treasure XP helps this but I have to get my player interested in treasures first. I houseruled that if player comes up with really neat ideas I give her extra XP for it. Otherwise character will be 1st level for the next year if she doesn't die trying.

Except the XP problem I really liked LotFP rules and Vornheim: The Complete City Kit had a nice and inspiring rule to create tension and mystery in city relationships. I will post that later, but there are duke, merchants' guild-master, priest and city troublemaker involved in this.
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