Mid-Level Sundered World One-Shot

At Adam's request, I ran a 10th-level one-shot for him and Melissa. He rolled up a mid-level incarnation of Waive, a human conglomeration of nomad/shaman/fighter, while Melissa just went with a dwarf barbarian named Torla.

It starts out with them delivering a devil bounty to an island mostly inhabited by devils. In addition to a bunch of cash that didn't matter because it's just a one-shot, they receive passes that temporarily exempt them from being enslaved or sacrificed. They had plenty of time but didn't wish to stay anyway, but while trying to leave someone managed to identify Waive before her head explodes.

A living tentacled meteorite descends from the subjective sky, captained by a thulid battlemind. He tells Waive he needs something from his brain, so of course Waive resists. For a time. Outnumbered they are eventually forced to flee after destroying a few star cult husks: luckily the range of Waive's teleports is such that it only took him a few hops to make it to their ship.

But while starting up the elemental collidor the thulid finds them. Rather than risk their ship they decided to meet him halfway, teleporting behind him in hopes of a surprise attack. It works, at first, but the thulid consumes a psychic catalyst (glowing blue crystal), and with a single mind blast stuns and nearly kills them both. He mostly painlessly extracts a memory from Waive, the location of a corpse star with an inert elder god egg and--since the island's infernal law enforcement is now heading their way--leaves them both floating above the island.

They pursue as soon as the mindlock wears off (doesn't take long) and they could finish firing up the engines (takes way longer), arriving at the corpse star only a half-cycle or so after the thulid's vessel did. The thulid's ship is floating above a pit, which is clearly illuminated by its glowing eyes. It isn't manned, but since it's alive it fights back anyway. Adam declares that Waive's ship (at least I think it was his ship) has a firelance battery, and they manage to destroy the thulid's ship without taking much damage on their part (not that it would have mattered much because, again, one-shot).

Amidst rock-and-tentacle fragments, and a bunch of guts, are about a half-dozen uncut blue crystals, similar to the ones that thulid had used before: Torla grabs them before they descended into the pit. On their way down they hear unsettling music that doesn't seem to come from anywhere in particular. Worse, they can't block it out by simply plugging their ears: it seems to reverberate cacophonously in their minds.

At the bottom are four passages: one completely excavated, another partially so, and the other two seemingly untouched. Checking the partial, they see that beyond the rubble is a moldering skeleton clutching a massive green disk. Waive grabs Torla and teleports them onto the other side of the rubble. Assuming the skeleton will attack Torla throws a rock at it, obliterating the skull with a critical hit. This causes the rest of it to crumble to dust, and the disk to roll towards them.

Neither of them can detect or read magic, so Waive just picks up the disc: he immediately notices that he can only barely hear the strange music. Figuring it's some kind of psychic shield they decide to bring it along, but when Waive attempts to teleport them again, he inadvertently creates a spatial tunnel. So not only a shield, but also a psionic enhancer of sorts.

They head through the excavated passage, and quickly find the thulid captain. The rest of his crew is dead, their brains extracted. He's attempting to crack open the god-egg using his tentacles, but when that fails he produces another psychic catalyst; before he can use it Waive tele-snags it. Undeterred, the thulid just uses another and proceeds to shatter the egg effortlessly.

A black amoeba-like entity covered in eyes spilled forth, consuming the thulid as it rapidly grows in size. Torla is barely able to scratch it with her axe (had them roll three magic items but they didn't get magic weapons), and Waive's sword-spirits confirm that they aren't doing much better. They consider fleeing, but Torla gives him the psychic catalysts she took and tells him to use them: after some debate and experimentation (such as by holding them) he jams five of them into his head.

This gives Waive a massive surge of psychic energy (ie, +25 Power Points), which when further enhanced by the disc (lets him ignore nomad level limitations when boosting psychic powers using more Power Points) causes him to manifest a miniature singulariy, utterly consuming the entity before vanishing.

And that's where we ended the session. Only supposed to be a one-off anyway, so any treasure I mentioned would have been a cruel joke. Not sure whether I'll flesh out the corpse star, use it in a future adventure (even if just as a reference). Maybe for the Dungeons & Delvers campaign setting.

Design & Development
The first fight had them go up against two level 8 star cult husks and six level 5 star cult warriors (converted stats from my 4th- and 5th-Edition star cult monsters). The warriors ganged up on Waive and almost beat him to death in a couple rounds (they each got two attacks). Since this was against a party of two I'm cool with that result.

Also nomads are pretty squishy, intended to be a kind of space-folding psychic rogue, so this seems normal to me (I'd expect a rogue outnumbered 5-to-1 to also get the shit kicked out of them). But I think like a rogue they could benefit from a Reaction talent that lets them re-roll an attack, and teleport away if it misses.

Another bigger thing is that nomads lack a scaling attack. Everyone else has one, whether it's just more or bigger dice being rolled, or some combination of scaling damage and multiple attacks (like barbarians, fighters, rangers, and paladins get). So for nomads were going to give them a ranged at-will that lets them teleport bits of creatures away.

It'll probably start at 1d6, and go up by another 1d6 every 5-levels (perhaps with an option to spend Power Points to increase the damage). Adam wants them to be able to use a weapon to stab things from a distance, so that'll probably be a talent that gives you bonus damage when you do that, plus whatever properties the weapon gets.

You can now get a physical copy of Dungeons & Delvers: Black Book in whatever format you want! We've also released the first big supplement for it, Appendix D, so pick that up if you want more of everything.

If you want more adventures, we just released Escape From the Flesh Catacombs: a bunch of 0-level characters need to escape from the catacomb-lair of a gorgon that was slain, causing everything she's petrified to revert to flesh and rise as undead.

Our latest Dungeon World class, The Ranger, is now available.

Dwarven Vault is our sixth 10+ Treasures volume. If you're interested in thirty dwarven magic items (including an eye that lets you shoot lasers) and nearly a dozen new bits of dungeon gear, check it out!

By fan demand, we've mashed all of our 10+ Treasure volumes into one big magic item book, making it cheaper and more convenient to buy in print (which you can now do).

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