Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Season 1 AAR#2: Ultima Forsan

Welcome to an extremely late after action report. I wished to post this much earlier but it between a long work week and a cold that simply will not go away, I have been drained after work. I was a bit nervous with this session as it was involved the plagued and I wasn't sure how combat will be with the party. But lets dive right in.

We are playing the Secrets of Marco Polo adventure which comes in the GM section of Ultima Forsan which uses the Savage Worlds rulebook. I recommend players whose GM is playing to use the adventure wait a couple of AARs till that start reading as my group should have moved on.

With that out of the way lets roll.

Malakai: A plague doctor whom is determined to find a cure to the plague. Native of New Venice.
Chuvalski: A well dressed Russian whom seems capable of holding himself in a fight.
Dalmasca: An Egyptian Deadhunter.

AAR 2:
We left the party after finding themselves on the tartan ship Pandora, owned by a jovial Captain Largo Secillano. They traveled towards Old Venice, a city of sorrow, to meet Captain Aschenbach and her ship the Bucintoro. The party tried lending a hand though what they had in effort, they lacked in skill and luck. After Chuvalski ended up over the railing with a rope holding him up by the ankle, Captain Secillano assured the party that as long as they ignored what was below deck, their friendly banter was all that he asked for. Doing so, each offered tidbits of their past and traded tales of adventure. Even Dalmasca, who retreated up the mast, joined the conversation. Captain Secillano offered the most juiciest topic when he discussed the lands of Matrega.
As the Pandora approached the Bucintoro, a burly but kind second in command named Othello greeted the party, whose lack of sea skills showed yet again during transit between ships to the amusement of the crew. Joining her crew in light jibbing, Captain Hilaire Aschenbach greeted the party on her ship’s deck. Despite her appearance of being tainted, a trait shared by her entire crew, Aschenbach’s beauty charmed the party. Malakai in particular became smitten and made introductions with particular gusto. Aschenbach played along and offered the party dinner invitations and a nights rest before showing them the way to Marco Polo’s palace. As she excused herself to read the letter from Melqisedeq, Secillano parted ways promising to return within a day or two.
Dinner consisted of fair but delicious food and the party learned how the crew supported itself. The Bucintoro often lent crew members as guides into Old Venice. Due to years of living along a city of sorrow’s outskirts, they had intimate knowledge of its passageways. Being tainted, the crew had no fear of effects brought by prolonged exposure to the miasma, (a toxic mist associated with the plague). Aschenbach explained what information she knew of the Book of Sun that the party was after. During dinner, Aschenbach and Malakai traded not so subtle flirtations despite eye rolling from the rest of the party and Othello. Aschenbach offered crewman Ceccin as guide to the city and retires with the plague doctor to her chambers to “discuss books.”
The next day, Ceccin brought the party into Old Venice and to Marco Polo’s palace. There, the party hoped to find clues to where Polo hid his treasure including the Book of the Sun. As the party approached the doors, Ceccin shouted a warning that they were not alone. A number of drowned ones (water traveling plagued) began working their way up the courtyard and towards the party. Deciding not to risk a fight with the plagued, the party ran into the palace and barred the doors while Ceccin distracted the drowned and attempt to draw them away. 

Feeling relatively safe, the party began searching the first floor of the palace and found a hidden trap door and stairs leading up. After successfully navigating the rotted staircase with only a minor setback, the party continued their search of the second floor. While much of the floor contained opened rooms, one door was firmly locked. Kicking the door open, Malakai narrowly avoided a spear shooting up from the floor. After looking for any further signs of traps, the party entered what appeared to be a library. After searching the room the party found the Journal of Marco Polo that contained additional clues as to the Polo’s treasure. Malakai also found a journal discussing Russia during the early plague years. He pocketed the book for study in the future.
The party then made their way to the basement where they encountered a plague that was transfused to the wall and covered in mollusks. Malakai could not help but take a sample to study and the rest of the party found a few items of value. Finding nothing else and wishing to not miss Ceccin, the party made their escape.
As Ceccin brought the party close to the Bucintoro, they saw the deck near empty but for a few crew members and Othello. Suspicious, the party prepared themselves as they climbed aboard. To their horror they found Othello and two crew mates had turned. Sounds coming from the crew quarters suggested the rest of the crew had escaped and barricaded themselves. The party found themselves on the defense as the three possessed attacked. Malakai took injuries but managed to avoid any of the attacks actually breaking his skin. Diving to side he managed to fire a shot to aid the rest of the party. Firing their own weapons, the rest of the party managed to take down the two crewman. After trading attacks, Chuvalski managed to down the massive Othello.
If that seems like an abrupt end, it is because we had to call it a night. Due to some scheduling problems we had to start the game later than normal and by the time the fight ended I had to call it quits. Stay tuned for the next AAR to find out what happened to the crew of the Bucintoro.
If you have any suggestions or questions don't hesitate to chirp up!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Season 1 AAR#1: Ultima Forsan

What follows is an after action report for my inaugural session of my first campaign! The main purpose is to present my players with a recap of events that is useful before play the next session. I also thought others may enjoy reading it over.

We are playing the Secrets of Marco Polo adventure which comes in the GM section of Ultima Forsan which uses the Savage Worlds rulebook. I recommend players whose GM is playing to use the adventure wait a couple of AARs till that start reading as my group should have moved on.

With that out of the way lets roll.

Malakai: A plague doctor whom is determined to find a cure to the plague. Native of New Venice.
Chuvalski: A well dressed Russian whom seems capable of holding himself in a fight.
Dalmasca: An Egyptian Deadhunter.

AAR 1:

Each PC began by shopping the market individually. During this time, each is approached by an individual who slips them a message and runs off before questions can be asked. Each message contains a mysterious summons to the Sorcerers Court, a unofficial central location of alchemists and Kabbalists. Seeing that they were not alone in receiving an invite, the three decide to accompany each other to the tainted district to find the hidden court.

At the Black Gate, a few guards stopped the PCs with a warning that entering the plaque district late in the afternoon was unadvised. With only an hour before curfew untainted were encouraged to leave the district. Malakia assured the guards that his services were needed and should be completed quickly. The guards reluctantly allowed them to pass with a final warning to be out before nightfall.

Malakia, a native of New Venice, quickly determined the location he believed the mysterious message was referring to. With time to kill, the three introduced themselves. Dalmasca told a tale of one of his adventures further to the north. Chuvalski hinted that his past included someone with a grudge. Malakai proclaimed his purpose to find a cure, which generated laughter at such an impossible task but also earned respect for his determination.

Noticing that it was getting dark out, the PCs decided to find a suitable location to hide from patrols until the time mentioned on the paper. Dalmasca offered to shoot an arrow and rope up a building so that they could hide on the roof. He failed miserably. Not to be outdone, Chuvalski proclaimed that he would do it, and missed as well. Malakai, who never shot a bow before, managed to lodge an arrow over the roof. His victory was short lived as they found that during this shooting match, they attracted a number of guards. Desiring not to hurt guardsmen who where only doing their jobs, Chuvalski offered bribes if they would give the PCs an extra hour. The guards happily took the bribe under the promises that the PCs would not cause any trouble.

At the appointed time, a hidden passage to the Sorcerers Court was revealed and the PCs entered a tavern once at the courtyard. There they met the sender of the messages, Kabbalist Melqisedeq. Melqisedeq asked the PCs to find an ancient text that may reveal clues to curing the plague. The PCs, each with their own reason and the promise of all other treasure as reward, agreed to help. Their first step was to meet a Captain Largo Sevilliano who would take them to Old Venice where they were to search Marco Polo's old home for a clue to the location of his treasure vault. While ironing out details, the inn was attacked by a Leaden Knight, an mechanical man.

After laying waste to the Leaden Knight, the inn burning down in flames, and with guards in pursuit, the PCs decide to start their adventure a bit premature. While escaping to the docks, Melqisedeq warns that the PCs will not be alone in trying to find the old text. The Leaden Knight must have been sent by Melqisedeq's peer and nemesis, Sabellicus. Melqisedeq offers the PCs thanks and good luck as they set sail for Old Venice, a city of sorrow.

Hope you enjoyed the read, I'm open for suggestions on format. I will be following this up with some of my thoughts regarding this session.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Hello World.... (aka what is this all about)

I believe a good way to start this blog is by discussing what it is all about. At the most basic level, Timber Road Society Adventures will discuss the many different aspects of roleplaying games. My approach, at least for the near future is one of a relative noob. I have dabbled in the hobby over the years but simply never committed to steady gaming for a multitude of reasons. But I am at a time in my life where I really want to make the leap headfirst and embrace many assets that roleplaying games have grown to be.

There are a number of themes that I will be exploring in this blog. The first is cataloging my experiences as I start a regular game group and all the questions and challenges that the task raises. Because of that, this blog will host opinions on a verity of products including rulesets, settings, GM tools, and anything else someone such as myself could stumble upon while searching the hobby markets. I will want to discuss my observations about the communities that have risen since the begging of the hobby. This means I will point out online communities, blogs, and podcasts that have caught my attention. I'm sure that there will be a number of other topics that pop up here and now as well.

For now I am going to try and keep a modest goal of at least two posts a month. Topics to expect in the near future are:

  • How I chose my first campaign
  • Getting started in my first campaign
  • My plans for gaming
  • My roleplaying bucket list
  • Questions to get to know my players better
  • My collection
I look forward to exploring all these thoughts in my head and emerging myself in the roleplaying community!

Feel free to introduce yourself!