Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Parates Attack - Oolong the Scarlet Hero 2.3

Continued from previous post.

Discussing solo RPG games, Leo Tolstoy once said: Successful scenes are all alike; every failed scene  fails in its own way. It seems that Scarlet Heroes system follows this principle... 

All that I need to finish current adventure is one successful conflict scene. When playing Scarlet Heroes urban adventures, successful conflict scenes give 1VP to hero while removing 1VP from antagonist.

So, I rolled against conflict scenes table, and I got following set up: Outmaneuver a local official suborned or bribed by the foe. Roll a die; on odd result add 1 Heat to the community (Heat is a measurement of pressure community puts on the hero. After each adventure player rolls d10. If the result is equal or lower than current Heat, hero needs to face the consequences community puts on her or to play adventure dedicated to lowering Heat). I rolled 4, so Oolong earned her first heat point in Earl Grey.

Oolong started building barricades in the town as defensive outposts against incoming pirates. But she soon realized that there is not enough material available. So, she approached one of the nearby villa's determined to "borrow" some furniture for there. On the gate, she was greeted by a local aristocrat, surrounded with six body guards. 
Oolong explained her needs to him, but he just laughed at her and refused to give any of his hard earned possessions (failed charisma test). But Oolong was not going to give up that easily, so she attacked aristocrat, determined to take what she needs by force, if necessary (This counts as unnecessary use of force. It adds another heat point to the community, but if Oolong wins the fight, scene will count as successful). Our hero managed to drop two of the bodyguard thugs to the ground, but the rest ganged on her, and she barely escaped with her life (with just one health point left). 

The scene was failure, so Pirates are gaining 1 VP. Oolong also had to rest to regain strength,  so another VP for pirates is in order. Luckily, after conflict scenes player do not roll for antagonist VP, so the current result is 9:9. The last conflict scene will determine the winner of the adventure.

One more roll against conflict scenes table defines the setup as: Sabotage the foe's possession important to the plot. Roll a die; on an odd result face a fight as well as the check. I rolled 5, so no prearranged fight. 

Oolong was informed that pirates made a machine producing smoke, that will hide them from town archers once they attack. So, she sneaked behind enemy lines (dexterity test), damaged the machine (intelligence test) and sneaked back into town (dexterity again).

So this is it. 10:8 for Oolong. Reaching 10 VP triggers final action scene that will end the adventure.

Pirates are attacking. Standing in the middle of the street, shoulder to shoulder with other defenders, Oolong is fighting to survive the waves of attackers. 
She needs to survive d6+5=7 combat rounds before pirate attack is broken by the main force of defenders. And.. She managed to stay on her feet for 3 rounds..... So, pirates are awarded with another VP and final result is 10:9 for our hero. It is minor victory.

Oolong wake up in the hospital, among all others wounded during the attack (In Scarlet Heroes, city encounters are described as never lethal, since wounded characters are usually healed by the city healers before they can bleed to death, so they are able to continue. If such thing would happen in the dungeon or in the wilderness, it will be the end of the campaign...).

Pirates are defeated for the moment, and they will not pose immediate threat, but they leader was not captured, and there is a serious possibility that the town of Earl Grey will not be really safe from similar attacks in the future. 

But in the moment, town is open again, and Oolong is free to leave, and that is what is currently important to her. So, she waited for her wounds to heal, and then used some of her hard earned money to better equip herself. 
She first visited Pai Mu Tan the alchemist, and purchased some potions from him - one more potion of Invisibility, one potion of Furious might and one Antidote, all for 15000 gp. She honestly expected some discount due to her activities in the recent events, but was not given.
She also purchased some eagle feather amulet, and a donkey named Guan Yin.
Than she wished the town of Earl Grey farewell, and left into wilderness. 

Some thoughts on Scarlet heroes urban adventures: Victory points system is really interesting, and makes for a tense game. The problem of this system is with the proposed scenes. System is not really storytelling oriented, so often it feels too mechanical, like - do a test to earn a clue, without even trying to explain how does the test fits into the story, or what is the clue you earned. But all in all, this is a good system.

To be continued.

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