Before I go any further, just a quick note to remind folks that this project is not even in what I would consider an Alpha state. We played last night and in making characters, I realized that I had forgotten to put in the table for Attribute bonuses. I had a copy of the table but that’s the kind of stuff you’re going to find if you start looking at the game now. Also, the explanations on how to play or use the rules is close to non-existent. Just remember that if you’re following along and looking at the game. This is NOT what I would consider a finished product.
So, we have actually played 3 sessions with the vo.1.0 rules. Things went pretty well considering the rough state of things and I was able to clean things up a bit. The main things I did before v0.2.0 was modify the spell and prayer effects, tweek the racial abilities a bit and change the rules on Weapons Skills. None of these changes were major. Just fiddling with the numbers a bit mostly.
My son had a very good time with the first couple of sessions. He still isn’t completely sure what is going on all the time but he likes rolling the dice and killing goblins. He thought the whole final battle with the “Skeleton King”, as he called it, was really cool. So far, at least a minor success. He hasn’t learned any new reading comprehension skills yet but that might be due to the fact that I haven’t gotten the rules into a readable form for him at this point.
Last night we started an actual campaign game with a group of 4 players. The basic campaign setup was that a Baron Hargrave had set off 5 years ago and colonized a small island chain far out into the Sea of Storms. It has now grow into 2 villages and is stable enough that exploration deeper into the unknown parts of the islands is possible. Our heroes arrive into that situation. I’ve pitched it as an exploration kind of sandboxy game. The players seem keen. (My son didn’t play. He didn’t get his schoolwork done so forfeited the privilege. He wasn’t happy.)
The players rolled up the following characters:
|Lucky||Female Halfling Fighter|
|Gunnar||Male Dwarven Fighter/Cleric|
|Quinton||Male Gnome Mage|
|Fen||Male Human Fighter/Thief|
The player breakdown:
Lucky player (female) is married to Gunnar’s player (male). Quinton and Fen are played by young, single men. Player ages range from about 22 to 35. I’m the oldest at 43. If my son was playing he would be 11. Most of the players have played RPG’s before but are all fairly new to the hobby. Certainly no one approaches my 26 years of experience. Most of the experience has been with D&D / Pathfinder games; although, Fen’s player has done some FATE and other systems and enjoys them.
We spent most of the session creating characters. It isn’t that characters are all that complicated to create, it’s just that no one knows the rules extremely well yet and I discovered that I had forgotten to include some necessary information in the ruleset. Also, folks were engaged with making a character that they liked so they agonized over some of the decisions. I didn’t discourage that. My experience creating characters on my own is that I can do it in about 5 minutes.
Lucky’s player was… lucky. She rolled what has to be the best character I’ve ever seen rolled without cheating. I believe her stats looked like this: Strength (18), Dexterity (17), Constitution (15), Intelligence (15), Wisdom (14) and Charisma (14). She is ironically head and shoulders above the other characters. I think this will be a good opportunity to see if unbalanced stats in the party hurts the game at all.
We started the game with Lucky, Gunnar and Quinton arriving by ship in Haven. Gunnar was a travelling priest and was pursuing an old legend of a lost dwarven kingdom that had sunk into the sea. (Gunnar’s player dubbed this kingdom, Dwarflantis.) He thought perhaps this newly discovered island chain might hold some clues about the legends. His boon companion was Lucky, an unusually talented halfling who didn’t quite fit in with her quieter kinsmen back home. On the ship they became friends with Quinton, a young apprentice wizard, whose master had sent him to Haven to study for a while. Something about an irate Duchess and a large amount of custard. Quinton didn’t like to talk about it.
Upon landing, Quinton sought out his master’s nephew, Fen, who lived on the island. Fen was a local scout / guide / woodsman. He reluctantly agreed to look out for Quinton and restrict the young gnome’s access to both Duchesses and custard. Quinton and the group next looked up Anneles, his master’s associate, and the most powerful mage in Haven. Anneles was old and a bit cranky but she did agree to put up Quinton in her small tower while he stayed in Haven. Of course, she didn’t believe in getting something for nothing so she told Quinton he was going to have to work for his room. Anneles had sent her apprentice, Herah, off to Laketown on the other side of the island to gather some herbs that grew around Lake Hargrave. The girl had been gone too long. She wanted Quinton to hunt her down and tell her to get back to the tower to her studies.
With that, Quinton and the group decided to head up river to Laketown and find the overdue apprentice.
We ended the session there. More to come…
** Note: I have no idea at this point what to name this game. If anyone has ideas, I’m open.