As you may know I have been doing some Minecraft videos over on YouTube. Now I didn’t want to spend a great deal of time spamming the crap out of this site with video announcements so have decided to just link to the playlist of the videos so far…
Things I have learned so far:
Editing videos is a pain in the arse but it gets easier with experience.
Gaining viewers is hard work.
Its very time consuming.
One of the things that I would love to do in the future is record some RPG sessions, I was going to use the Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 3rd Edition but the custom dice are an issues when playing on-line. So I have decided to use the fantastic RPG Dragon Age for the videos, its simple and only require 3d6 to run.
The videos will be recorded from my perspective (GMing) to begin with as recording a group is not easy online. Hopefully as I’m going to be making the videos with my own gaming group we will also be able to produce some round table videos as well.
Anyway here’s the link to the Minecraft video Playlist:
Not one to sit back on my GMing, even when I’m not currently running a game…
(I’m not getting withdraw symptoms or anything, honest…. OK, well maybe a little… OK, a LOT alright, OK HAPPY NOW! I’m a GM and I’m addicted to prep.)
I’m currently reading through and preparing to run the First Edition Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay (WFRP) adventure collection called the Enemy Within. I’m having a blast. The story’s great with plenty of action and things to keep the players guessing. Transferring the adventure to Third edition has been really easy, especially with the Creature Vault putting all the creature and NPC stats on cards.
Being a GM can be quite difficult so its great to see that someone has taken the lead and produced a book about session prep. Yes we all know there’s GM & DM books that should help, but they’re very lacking on actually prep tools.
Step in the Gnome Stews new book Never Unprepared. This could be the book that every GM is looking for and as I’m in the process of prepping myself I’m eagerly waiting for the PDF version to become available.
Yep you read that right there is going to be another core rulebook for the Warhammer 40K d% system making a grand total of 5.
We’ve had investigations with the Dark Heresy, flown all over the system selling stuff with Rogue Trader, been bad asses with Death Watch and then just bad with Black Crusade. Now we are going to get down and dirty with the rank and file in Only War, A core rulebook for playing the imperium Guard. Think Starship troopers and you will be about there…
Link the the Fantasy Flight Games news article: Here
As a gamer I have often wondered what it is that draws me to the hobby.
Not only is it a great way to spend time with friends but for some unknown reason I also have a strong personal connection with some of my gaming accessories.
Take my dice bag (not literally, if you try I will break your friggin arms) it means a lot to me and travels in my bag every where I go. Why do I feel this connection? I have no idea, is it because it makes me part of a group, possibly, does it define who I am…I just don’t know.
So I have a question, is there a gaming object that means a lot to you? Let me know, just so I can feel less of a freaky geek…
So we have now started our Deathwatch game proper. After character creation we have ended up with:
Ultramarine Assault Marine
Blood Angels Assault Marine (Who wasn’t actually here for this session, but nevermind)
Dark Angels Devastator Marine
Storm Warden Librarian
Black Templers Tech Marine
For the first full mission, we are playing through Extraction, which is detailed in the back of the core rulebook. I started with the mission briefing, stating that the moon of Tantalus, an Imperium ‘forge world’ has been subjected to a tyranid swarm, and is about to be completely overrun. However, stationed on Tantalus at the time of the attack, was Magos Vyakai who has a data core with vital information about the Tyranid threat contained within. Unfortunately, the shuttle carrying the Magos crashed and now he needs rescuing from the jaws of the Tyranid hordes. Therefore, the kill-team’s primary objective is to retrieve that data core, and if possible, rescue the Magos himself.
The players then tooled up for the mission. I gave them 30 requisition points that they could use to get ammunition, weapons and equipment above their standard gear. Since this is the first time we had used the requisition rules, there was a bit of confusion about what items they were allowed to take. It was obvious they could not take anything that cost more than 30 req, but I had never previously explained the concept of Renown. None of the players are considered to have any renown within the Deathwatch (this being the first time they have served) and were trying to requisition things they could not. Once this was sorted and the players were satisfied with what they had chosen, the task of selecting the team leader could begin. After some discussion (along the lines of ‘I’m not doing it, you do it’), it was decided that the Ultramarine would be leader. He selected his oath (effectively choosing what squad modes they could use) and we worked out the team cohesion (wrongly as it turned out, since I forgot he is an Ultramarine and so gets an extra point), then the mission began in earnest.
The kill-team was drop-podded to the location of the crash site to begin the search for the Magos. When they got to the shuttle, it was beyond repair and the emergency bolts of the entry hatch had been activated. The team managed to track the party away from the shuttle, but came across the area where they had been ambushed by some ‘nids. There was no sign of the Magos among the corpses, and further attempts to track his movement were unsuccessful. The Techmarine tried to plug-in to a servitor that had been destroyed in the ambush, but was unable to determine anything of use. However, he was getting a signal over his vox unit, which he managed to boost and determine that there was a manufactorum nearby and that would be the most logical place for the Magos to head for. As they started moving out, they heard a screech from above, and two Tyranid Shrikes dived out of the sky to attack them. One went for the Librarian, who had managed to get a shot off, and the other was attacking the Devestator, preventing him from bringing his Heavy Bolter to bear. The Devestator was joined by the Assault Marine, who charged the tyranid and drew it’s attention away from the Dev. The Techmarine had switched to his Hellfire rounds (which ignored natural armour) and began peppering the other ‘nid with his bolter shells. After a couple of combat rounds, the ‘nid attacking the Librarian gave another screech and flew into the sky in an attempt to escape, but the Techmarine had been taking careful aim at him and fired a full-auto burst into the beast’s foul hide. The Tyranid Warrior had flown straight up, and what comes up must come down. The Librarian, seeing the problem, attempted to dodge, but stumbled. The Techmarine, seeing the problem, lined up his servo-arm and batted the creature in an impromptu game of rounders. Not only did he successfully smack the creature outside its head, he managed to direct it into the path of the other Tyranid, still currently engaged with the Assault and Dev marines. It is now stunned, and can’t move since its mate is a literal dead weight on its back. The Dev tries to kill it with his combat knife, but doesn’t quite have the strength, thereby giving the Assault marine the killing blow (he wasn’t best pleased by this, but that’s the way the dice had fallen).
Continuing on to the facility, they soon came to the top of a cliff. Seeing a communications tower to the left of them, they concluded they would have to go there at missions end to set off the signal beacon and call a Thunderhawk for extraction. They also saw a horde of tyranid attacking a small group of buildings, and reasoned that was where the Magos would be hiding out (spoiler alert: He isn’t).
The plan they came up with was the Assault marine would run around the outside whilst the others distracted the tyranid horde. So he set off with his jump pack, whilst the Devestator unleashed his heavy bolter on the horde. The other two decided they need to get down to the bottom of the cliff, and do so fairly quickly. Since there was a steep, but not shear cliff face, they decided to try sliding down the cliff face whilst firing their bolters. It was a nice idea, but the Librarian couldn’t keep his balance, and rolled down the hill, the Techmarine also lost balance, but used his servo arm to right himself and ski down the hill. Suffice to say, the Devestators heavy bolter made mince meat of the horde, and had obliterated it before it could reach the two at the bottom of the hill.
Whilst that was going on, the Assault marine reached a small ravine containing an overturned land hauler that contained a number of Imperial Guardsman about to be swamped by another bunch of ‘nids. Heroically, he jumped into action and pretty much single headedly, with chainsword and combat knife, saved the majority of the guards within the land hauler. The grateful Commissar then offered any help he or his men could, but didn’t have any information on the whereabouts of the Magos.
Ordering the guards to form a perimeter around the small complex, the Space Marines entered and did a thourgh search of the buildings. Whilst searching, they were attacked by a small number of Hormaguants (which didn’t even scratch their power armour), but didn’t find the Magos. Fortunately, there were a number of storage containers within the facility that contained an Auspex, which they think they can use to pinpoint the Magos location.
This is where the session ended. Will the Space Marines complete their mission? Will the Magos and the datacore be saved, or will they all be turned into Tyranid Scooby snacks? The next session is not for a month, but be sure to come back and discover how the Deathwatch will try to kick more xenos backside.
This post continues from Part One. To read that post click here.
Once our space marine party had regrouped at the top of the stairs it was time to take stock of this new area. The corridor had one doorway leading to the control centre so we advanced in that direction.
Tristan took the lead and opened the door, spying the communications console he took out a Frag Grenade and let it fly. Missing the console the grenade detonated in an open area a little distance from the console causing no damage. Damn!
Though this explosion did have an unwanted secondary effect. The Tau commander who was also occupying the command centre was made aware of our presences and opened fire at the doorway. Suddenly Tristan had to start to dodging the flying lead that was coming his way.
It was an all out attack on the Commander for the next few rounds. Bullets were flying, Missiles were targeting Space Marines left, right and centre. It was a full frontal assault and we were the ones being assaulted. A couple of us went in for hand to hand as we realised he was quite weak in melee combat.
At some point a Krak Grenade was thrown, yes it WAS me OK, that blew a nice hole in the floor directly above the decompressed area below. This led to all the air evacuating the room we were in, luckily we were all still wearing our helmet’s from the last decompression event.
As the combat continued I was able to get a few fully automatic bursts targeted at the advancing commander. As my clip went dry I was able to puncher the Tau’s formidable amour and watched as the soft squidgy Commander was sucked out of his own suit. Gross! Then it was time to disarm the defence consoles. A few well thrown grenades disarmed the station and then it was time to move on.
I have played with the group now for nigh on two years. In that time we have managed some D&D, Warhammer FRP v3, Vampire: The Masquerade and some one shots thrown in for good measure. However, I have always been a player and never a DM. When Mike came up with the idea for One-Shot March, where we try a different system each week and each has a chance to DM, I was very excited.
I don’t think anyone can deny that Space Marines are awesome. And so, with the release of Deathwatch where you get to play as the Emperor’s finest, I thought that would be an ideal game to run (it helped that the group has also played Dark Heresy and Rogue Trader before, so the rules wouldn’t come as a complete shock). So how did it go?
Since it was a one shot, I had to come up with a mission that could be completed within three hours. My idea then was to conjure a up a space station that would be destroyed by Imperial Navy forces, but contained a valuable artefact that needed securing. This allowed me to have a small contained space that could easily be explored, and gave me an excuse to add a three hour time limit (the Navy destroying the base in three hours, unless the kill-team could secure it first). I also pre-generated the characters and I decided to make sure I had one of each type of Marine to try out (except Librarian since there were only 5 players) rather than specifically tailoring the characters for this mission.
For challenges, I had an idea whereby the Tactical Marine would have to decide where to breach the hull. One point was very easy, the hull could be breached with a Krak grenade and no enemies would notice. The other side of the scale would be breaching the hull of the shuttle bay, that would require the use of a Melta Bomb and would also have a horde of tau warriors running around it. I also had a challenge where the team had to open the vault containing the artefact. This was alarmed and (should have been) difficult to open (unless the team still had the melta bomb, which would have obliterated the door).
There are a few things I realise I should have done more of in preparation, now that the session itself is out of the way. My dice are left at my friend’s house, so I was not able to practice the combat beforehand. This lead to a few issues, namely:
a) I had no practice playing a horde (a new mechanic for Deathwatch) so found it harder than it should have been to apply damage and use the traits of a horde.
b) I was unsure how powerful the enemy characters were, so wasn’t sure if the players were heading into a hell or kindergarten
c) Not knowing the enemy characters strengths and weaknesses meant I used them in situations where I probably shouldn’t have done. An example, the station commander was taken from the Tau Commander listed in the rulebook. I had him in a relatively small command centre, where he would be mostly in melee combat, and didn’t realise he had practically no melee skill.
d) Having not been able to practice the way damage is dealt, meant each turn took slightly longer than it needed to, which slowed down play.
I did read the rules beforehand. Just a few weeks beforehand. This means that by the time I got round to the session itself, the rules were a hazy memory. I did mark all the places in the book I thought I would need, but again it takes time to look these things up, which slowed things down further. I was planning to re-read them, but without knowing which would be most used, I probably would not have re-read the ones I needed anyway.
If I was running a full campaign and could take more time over the story, I noticed there were a few things the players asked to do that sparked some intriguing thoughts that I could take advantage of. I’d also like to point out that they are very paranoid and were seeing traps where there were none. But I suppose that comes from a lifetime of adventuring.
I would certainly be willing to take the DM position on for a full campaign. The Deathwatch rules have some intriguing mechanics that we didn’t get round to using, so I’d like to see how they work in action.
The next one-shot I’ll be participating in will be Serenity, where I get to play the insane, but powerful (insanely powerful?) River Tam. Shiny.
For each week in March one of our players will taking over the role of DM and run a single 3 hour session to see what they can do with any system of their choice. This was the first session and everybody was up for trying out the new Deathwatch system. So when the time came Chef boldly volunteered for the first session and stepped behind the DM screen.
Deathwatch is the next power level in the Warhammer 40k role-play system based on the IP from Games Workshop. The Fantasy Flight Games books started with the low level Dark Heresy which allowed the players to play lowly initiates in the Inquisition. You are assigned missions and travel from planet to planet looking for corruption wherever it rears its head, which it does often.
The system then moved into the middle tier with Rogue Trader. This system added ship-to-ship combat and the ability to trade in the huge expanses of space. The new system allowed for a more open feel and moved away from the mission based story elements as Dark Heresy.
Deathwatch now moves into the higher level allowing players to don the power armour of a space marine and kick some Xenos ass. But only if the dice rolls are right, which in this session seemed to be a problem for the players, damn those unlucky die.
Well it has been a loooong time since I last updated this blog. Sometimes life, moving, Christmas and Open University just get in the way of gaming. Boooooo Sucks!
Though I have been playing in the weekly RPG sessions, Vampire = Shitloads of d10 + Cool, Starship Troopers = Guns + Cool.
Hopefully this brand new start will lead to regular updates of the Drunken Goblin website.
So what’s new?
Well this year I wanted to try something new with our gaming group. I proposed each member run one shot adventure each week through March. I had tried a one shot session in December with a Christmas themed Gamma World adventure. Then the next session we had a few players who could not make it so Nicky ran a wicked one-shot Dark Heresy adventure.
MMMmm… facing off against a Genestealer and I accidently, “cough”, killed Kevin’s character. But really Kev! Who goes into hand to hand combat with a Genestealer with the rest of the team taking aim with an assortment of huge and extremely deadly weapons. Including a Bolt Pistols, it deserves the capital letters, with explosive rounds that I needed to fire…Ops!…sorry Kev. Then I felt REALLY bad when he gave my Starship Trooper character covering fire last night.
So back to my idea of one-shots. Everyone thought it was a good idea, it gives everyone the chance to DM a game and to try out different systems. The rules were simple:
The adventure must last one session, running for approx. 3 hours
Characters will be provided by the person running the adventure
We can run any system we like
So far the following game systems have been borrowed or bought:
Kevin has decided to run WFRP 3rd ED
I nabbed Serenity
Steve will be running Grimm Fairytales
Chef has decided to purchase the new Deathwatch system
I’m looking forward to playing with the new systems and seeing what the guys come up with adventure wise. Let the adventure writing begin…