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Old 10-06-2018, 02:10 PM   #2
Captain Joy
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Heartland, U.S.A.
Default Re: Hall of Judgement: After Action Report

While this was a small $5 local convention, they still had online submissions. This was my blurb:
Event: The Ruins of Logiheimli *******Rules: DFRPG (powered by GURPS)
Period/Era: Fantasy Vikings
GM: Captain Joy
A party of adventures is needed to deal with walking dead that have begun plaguing the area. They’re coming from the ruins of Logiheimli: it used to be a Viking holy site, but that was hundreds of years ago. This is one of the "dungeons" from Douglas H. Cole`s HALL OF JUDGEMENT. PreGen characters provided. Your band of heroes will start within view of the ruins. Expect cold relentless death.
I had a quick-reference list of the PreGens (page one of my Spell Lists Cheatsheet) and all (but one of) the character sheets available for them to peruse. (I’d removed Lisbet Vinsdottir the Human Wrestler as an option because I’m not familiar with the grappling rules. Sorry Doug. This was my first time running this adventure so I was keeping things simple.) While reviewing the premiss of the adventure, the two players picked out
  • Skaši Tómurmakki: Human Swashbuckler
  • Viggo Wigland: Human Cleric

Given there were only two of them, I was please they chose a combat monster and a cleric effective against evil.

Viggo’s player had played GURPS a few times in the past–3rd ed. Skaši was new to GURPS. Neither was new to roleplaying: they picked up GURPS mechanics quickly, stayed in character, and worked well together. To assist with combat I had a combat maneuvers cheat sheet on my GM screen. Things were further simplified by the fact that neither was anxious to use ranged weapons. To assist the spell caster, I had a Spell Lists Cheatsheet and the DFRPG Spell book.

I read straight from the book the paragraph describing what they see as they approach the Logiheimli Ruins and had a map of the area from the book already printed out.

Approaching the Ruins
I let them pick the time of day they arrived; they chose sunrise. I rolled for weather and decided it was partly cloudy. They decided to walk the perimeter. They made Perception/Observation rolls and I told them the ruins were eerily still–no wildlife–and that Viggo felt a drop in sanctity.

They decided the largest and most-intact building in the center of the ruins was the best place to start and approached it via the barely-still-there Livestock Enclosure.

Livestock Enclosure
As they got closer to the Livestock Enclosure, I let them make some more Perception/Naturalist rolls, but they didn’t impress me enough to warn them about the unnaturally-in-good-shape horse skeletons. So, as soon as Skaši sets foot in the Enclosure, 2 skeleton warhorses start to rise. (Out comes my Chessex hex-map.) I only went with 2 because as there were only two PCs, I’d decided to cut adversary numbers in half. (As it happens, one of the girls in my face-to-face group is in into miniatures and she had two awesome looking skeleton warhorses.)

It took the skeleton warhorses two turns to get to their feet, which gave the Cleric time to get some spells ready. I don’t remember what they were, but I remember what they weren’t: spells that buffed Skaši, because that player was really playing up her “Doesn’t trust wizards” quirk.

Skaši (who was new to GURPS) quickly took to hit location and defensive attack options after being informed of them. He chopped the two front legs off one horse, and the head off the other. I decided the horse without front legs was effectively harmless, but the headless horse continued trying to slam them. :) Eventually the 2 skeleton warhorses were dispatched with no lasting harm to the heroes, but Viggo did have to cure himself of some injury. Viggo was appropriately curious and seemed satisfied that the -5 drop in sanctity and the guardian nature of their first encounter meant they were on the right track.

Temple of the Law God Logihóll
They check the perimeter of the temple; Skaši even climbs and looks in a second story window. Based on their rolls, I tell them the building structure has obviously been buffed by magic–which is why it looks so good–but otherwise it looks old and empty.

They enter the open front door and start poking around. Based on their rolls, I let the Cleric know he feels closer to the source of evil–surely something in this building, but nothing obviously in this main public worship room. The temple itself has obviously been desecrated. While Skaši is scrounging around for valuables, Viggo surreptitiously casts Shield on her. This distracts them enough that they are nearly ambushed by 4 ghouls. I say nearly, because I let Viggo notice them in just enough time for an active defense. (4 Ghoul mini's are now on the Chessex mat.)

The Ghouls are dispatched, thanks in part to Viggo’s Shield spell: at least once Skaši succeed at an active defense by exactly zero. But Skaši didn’t make all her active defenses and had to make a HT-2 roll to avoid momentary paralysis. (We have about an hour of game-time left, so I figure the next encounter will be the last.) Viggo heard something at the end of the fight–4 more ghouls had slinked down a concealed door to the basement–which led our heroes to the cursed obelisk in the basement.

Based on the swarming tactics employed by the previous ghouls, Skaši gave the 4 ghouls in the basement a bit more respect. They despatched these ghouls as well: Shield-buffed Skaši made defense rolls exactly, more HT-2 roll to resist paralyzing touches were made. But, three exciting combats, 2 skeleton warhorses, and 8 ghouls had taken their tole: the PCs are visibly on their last leg. They wisely rest long enough for Viggo to regain his fatigue.

Now to deal with what is clearly a cursed and defaced obelisk, emanating evil from the center of the room. Turns out, Viggo doesn’t have any way to safely de-curse it. They can’t just leave it be either, so they decide to destroy it. Viggo buffs everybody with Protection from Evil, which helps mightily when Skaši eventually smashes it to pieces, releasing an injury-causing pulse of evil, which they both survive.

I informed Viggo the sanctity of the region has been restored; the heroes have an uneventful journey home and the undead are no lounger plaguing the area.

Last edited by Captain Joy; 10-07-2018 at 02:12 AM. Reason: added some links
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