Saturday, April 27, 2013

030 - Rebooting Annuminas

Getting fancy with the adventuring gears.
This encounter covers three small bits. A playtest of the probabilistic rules on learning and researching. Some roleplaying around the dining table and a rather abstracted travel overland back to Annuminas. The meat of Session 9 is in the next encounter.

Two weeks in the Shire...

The last two weeks had been fun for the company. Shirefolks still raved about Irina and her friends slaying the wargs in Westfarthing. Arnadil and Sir Galdor were sorry to have missed the encounter with the winter drake. Irina sent the best of her day straining her upper body with a borrowed bow a little too heavy for herself. She religiously practiced for days on end on strength training in hope to be able to shoot well with a more powerful bow [Playtest report #1]. Arnadil looked for a mentor in Bywater to teach him about the North. He found a great storyteller called Tom Herder, but poor old Tom turned out to be a better storyteller than an actual teacher [Playtest report #2]. Finbert begged the grumpy Halin to spar with him at wrestling. Halin, unenthusiastic eventually obliged [Playtest report #3].  Sir Galdor spent the best of his time at the Green Dragon, playing dice and making a bit of silver (10 celebins). Kasper dissapeared in his room at the Green Dragon for most of the time. Spending some time with Araliniel on the Treatise, and reading. 

November 15th FA 15

At supper time, on the 15th, the company was assembled for the first time in many days. The wine was good and the food plenty. Irina was rather set on returning to Annuminas to determine whether anything dangerous was threatening the Shire. Finbert was eager to go with Irina. Halin was cautious, Sir Galdor eager to put behind his unfortunate performance in the Royal Library. Araliniel, already rather tipsy from her supper, reported that she had found the seeker spell in the Treatise. She estimated that she'd need another 3-4 weeks before she could cast the spell and get some information. 

Both Arnadil and Araliniel showed interest in returning to the library. The main problem here were the presence of at least one librarian wraith. Araliniel was in fact very knowledgeable about wraith although she didn't spoke up earlier [the GM forgot about her 15 levels in Hidden lore...], proposed a plan where she would attempt to strike a deal with the librarians. It was a dangerous plan, but she wanted to give it a shot. "They hate light, and they fear Arnadil's sword.", she said. "I had a vision about this, but I don't know what it means", she added: "Hide Glue".  The company didn't understood either what this oracle could possibly mean. Arnadil then proposed to systematically recon Annuminas and, if safe, return to the library. The company agreed to depart on the following day, bright and early.

On the morning of the 16th, Halin and Arnadil went to a general store to purchase two lanterns, some candles, a number of torches. Irina purchased bandages, just in case. They replenished their quivers. Arnadil spotted a spying glass which costed the heavy sum of 25 celebins. Halin, a seasoned merchant proposed to haggle a bit over the price. When the merchant realized that the "Warg Slayers" of the Shire were in his shop, he offered the spying glass as a present [Quick contest of Merchant, Halin got a critical success, the merchant got a critical failure... what are the odds?]. Irina also bought a leather cap from a local leatherworker. She looked so cute with that on... [and her skull has now DR 3!]

The journey to Annuminas  

The journey back to Annuminas was straighforward. The snow had eased and the air was cool and crisp. Three days later, on the 19th they set out without their cart from Longcleeve, at the Northern edge of the Shire. The trip to Annuminas was a mere 4 hours on horseback. They approached from the West and arrived in the hills. Irina and Finbert, spy glass in hand, climbed to the crest of a hill to look down on the ruined city.

A whole lot of snow had fallen on Annuminas.  The bulk of what was visible was now under snow. Irina spotted a long path running along the perimeter of the ruins. Also, a rough wooden palisade was visible at the far-end of Annuminas. A plume of smoke could be seen coming up from within the enclave. That must be from where the braying of sheep had come from. 

They descended, hatched a plan. Araliniel would stay back with the horses while the rest of the company would set out on foot along the shore of Lake Evendim.

Playtest Report

1.  Irina wants to raise her ST. She decided to attempt a ST-based bow training by borrowing a ST 7 bow and doing target practice for hours on end, each day. She clocked 110 hours in 14 days, a ridiculous amount of time (but I wanted to try these rules). To acquire a point into ST-based bow, she needed a 8 on 3d6, didn't make it.

2. Arnadil tapped into the community in Bywater. Teachers there could be found with a -4 on research skills. Because finding such teacher was a social challenge, Arnadil used carousing rather than research to conduct his quest. He succeeded. Over 14 days, he spent some 64 hours listening about the Tales of the North. The target number to acquire a point was 7, raised to 8 because he had a teacher. The check failed the story teller spent much more time telling tales not particularly relevant. However, I believe that spending that much time listening even to ramblings on a theme should grant a point IF this is the first point to put into this skill (Area Knowldge (North). 

3. As neither were competent in this skill, the 50 hours spent sparring counted as self-teaching for both of them. The target number was 6, neither made it. Not very surprising, but worth the shot.

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