Spinning a yarn

Spinning a yarn

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

The Trees are Alive...

Hello again!

On account of me not having posted for a while prior to tonight (things have been a little hectic what with Christmas, work and family commitments) I figured I'd offer up another little encounter you may enjoy throwing at your players. This was designed for use in a Lamentations of the Flame Princess game however this could be tweaked easily I'm sure to fit in any other system.

Night has fallen and there is a sinister chill in the air. Your adventuring has taken you through the woods and you worry it may be treacherous to go on as the darkness creeps in around you. The moonlight gives you just enough light to see the skeletal branches of trees clawing at the sky with a few dead leaves still clinging to them like rotting flesh to a corpse.
You decide to make camp for the night in a small clearing where you can bed down and a few evergreen trees may provide you some shelter. As you start to fall asleep you see the fog begin to roll in... not unusual for this time of year. You settle down for the night but your eyes widen at a nearby rustle and they search the surrounding area. You see nothing but the trees and the fog which begins to creep over you.
A pang of panic grips your chest as you realise you are unable to move, unable to make a sound even. You notice from the corner of your eye a tree, slithering along on its roots toward you slowly. It seems to bend down toward you as a long spindly branch moves to your mouth, prying apart your lips and forcing itself into your mouth. The rough bark splinters at your throat as you choke on it, or at least it feels as though you would. You feel a hot burning sensation from deep down your throat and the branch is removed. You can breathe once more. The tree slithers away while you are left, throat raw, still unable to move, scream, cry out or even comprehend what has just happened to you. After all, tree's don't move...
If asleep in the woods at night time on a full moon the tree spirits will attempt to attack you. On the 3 nights of the full moon they come alive and emit a paralysing dense mist at will. Once they have some helpless victims, they will force tree limbs down their throats as they lay helpless and plant within their victims a seed of their own. The paralysing effect wears off after a few hours but the following then occurs if you have a seed inside you:

Day 1: skin begins to toughen much like bark. Permanently lose 2 from Dex but gain 2 to AC.

Day 2: skin begins to harden further and movement is now extremely difficult and much slower. Perm lose a further 3 from Dex but gain 3 to AC.

Day 3: features begin to harden over as well as you more closely resemble a tree. You are now unable to speak as your mouth is covered over in tough bark (though breathing is not a problem) and roots sprout from what used to be your feet securing you to the ground. You may still move your arms (branches) slowly but your lower body is that of a tree.

Day 4: You are a TREE. Dead for all intents and purposes but you will rise again on the next full moon and be compelled to procreate as a tree spirit yourself.

The only cure for this is to drink the sap of one of these tree spirits which will make you vomit and take the seedling with it. Any transformation up to this point remains but you will not transform further. This cannot be cured by dispel magic or any other means.


Little Red and Wolfgang Van De Berg

Hello my dears,

The following is a little side action you may want to chuck in as a random encounter for your gaming pleasure. As you can probably tell from reading it, I like fairy tales and this is inspired by one of my favourites... Hope it's of use to you.

Little Red and Wolfgang Van De Berg

Little Red (Birth name Scarlet Van De Berg) and Wolfgang Van De Berg are non identical twins approx 9 years old. Their Father viciously stabbed their Mother to death for adultery then cut his own neck. The toddler twins hid under a bed watching the bloodshed and were alone with their dead parents for nearly 2 days until their Grandmother found the bodies and took the children in. Being destitute they lived in a cave in the woods, setting traps to catch rabbits etc for food. The children took on the job of skinning and cooking the animals. They were shunned by the other villagers who said the children were unnatural, perverted by their parent’s madness and bathed in blood. When the children were 8 the Grandmother caught Pneumonia and died. The children ate her as they were perpetually hungry and would not let meat go to waste. The children then lived alone and sometime later when they came across a man who had been attacked and killed by a wolf; they ate what was left of him too. The children developed a taste for human flesh and set their tracking and trapping skills to hunting the best game of all, man. They usually stay close to home picking off travellers and the like who get lost in the woods, sometimes using their innocence to lure people into traps claiming they need help as their Grandmother is sick and dying. They are skilled at making traps, good with a blade and sewing.

When they encounter potential prey alone they will try to lure them into a trap or kill them when their backs are turned. When they encounter groups they will if possible try to separate them and trap them individually for an easier kill.

The woods near the caves where they live are interspersed with various traps such as tripwires with projectile stakes, pits with spikes covered by forest debris such as leaves and sticks, nets that will scoop you up if you step in them and suspend you from the trees, etc.

In the caves themselves they have a very thin wire from one side of the passage to the other at approximately adult neck height so they can run right under it when leading people to grandmother and the adults will run into it, slicing their necks.
The caves are sparsely decorated but contain various tools and weaponry as well as the personal effects of people they have killed, the odd wolf skin and a book named 'Grimm Fairy Tales'.
Special item:  Grandmother's Basket of Plenty
This item can be found in the caves. The basket of plenty each day mysteriously refills itself containing 4 small cakes. However one of the cakes each day is cursed. When eating the cursed cake, each bite you take of the cake transfers the bite to yourself and the cake turns into your own flesh in your mouth. Each bite taken deals 1HP damage and leaves you with chunks of flesh missing. If you eat this cake you develop a taste for human flesh and may require a willpower check when opportunity to eat human flesh without being caught arises. All other food now tastes bland to you. The other cakes are harmless, taste good and will satisfy your appetite (for a time).
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good roleplay night!


Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Super Mario Dice Bag

This is a dice bag I crocheted a little while ago. It is designed to look like the Super Mario style Bob-ombs. If you fancy making one for yourself you will need black, grey, white and yellow wool, a crochet hook and some grey ribbon.

I generally don't use patterns, nor do I usually make notes so what follows is not so much a pattern as a guide.

I start by making a magic circle and crocheting 8 single crochets into the circle joining with a slip stitch. I then chain 2 and double crochet twice into each stitch again joining at the end with a slip stitch. On the next row alternate 2 double crochets in one stitch then one double crochet in the next.

 For each subsequent row alter the ratio by reducing the frequency of 2 double crochets until the bag is the desired width. This is basically made the same way you might make a beanie hat for a baby so you may want to follow a pattern for a beanie using black wool. 

Once the width is correct, make 1 double crochet per chain all the way round and repeat till you have the desired height. Finish with two rows in grey. Then thread a ribbon through to use as a drawstring in the first grey row.

The eyes are each made by forming a chain the desired length of the eyes and single crocheting all the way around it with an extra single crochet in each corner. Once these are complete sew them in place. 

The feet are made in yellow wool using the same method as the first two rounds of the bag. Sew these on, weave in all your ends and voila! You have a dice bag :)

Hopefully that is of use to you. I have also made a pokeball version which I will upload at some point. There will be more dice bags to follow after Christmas as I am currently making some as presents and don't want to ruin the surprise!


Thursday, 19 November 2015

Manor of Payne

Two weeks ago I ran a one shot of my own making named 'Manor of Payne' using Lamentations of the Flame Princess.
This was the first game I had ran a game in 13 years and my previous attempt went apallingly. Needless to say I was quite nervous so I put in a lot of prep work and had players I knew would go easy on me if I did mess up.
We had some random characters I made earlier and opened the game with an invite to investigate disaperances at the village of Sleepy Hollow indicating a headless horseman was rumoured to be the cause. The team went and met with Mr and Mrs Payne briefly then went to the local brewery which had a sort of pub attached and proceeded to get very drunk! Resulting in a clumsy but charming magic user.
They heard about a sorcerer that lived in the woods and sold magical items so decided to investigate.
On the way they stopped by the old Van Tassel house which turned out to be haunted. The ghost of Katrina Van Tassel suggested Mrs Payne was possibly a witch and the players began to suspect she was responsible for the horseman. They kindly exorcised the ghosts and proceeded to the magic shop.
Upon reaching the magic shop one of the players was turned into a 10 year old girl which was remedied by the sorcerer. Naturally it was decided the best way to thank him was to rob the shop and fight the sorcerer; Amazingly they all came out of it unscathed due to Faerie Fire taking care of the invisibility problem (much to my surprise)! However one character did end up with a solid silver pointer finger, crime doesn't pay, except in this case.
Upon returning to the manor Mrs Payne tried to charm the fighter into coming to the basement with her but alas a successful save roll left him unconvinced and after playing along beautifully he surprised her with a stab from his dagger, as you do. Hearing her screams of pain the rest of the party and Mr Payne came running in and the resulting fight ended with both of the Payne's taking a one way trip through the window.
The players managed to convince the Payne's teenage daughter that she was now free to live the life she always wanted and to sign over the Payne land to the players.
Now rich, with a fully stocked magic shop as well as the Payne land for income the players decided to investigate the 'basement'. They found and fell victim to a few magical items which were largely declawed without Mrs Payne present. They also found a torture chamber (though sadly did not locate the cell with the poor mutilated village folk who were left to starve to death).
The last room they came to had a demon mural on the wall which caused one player to turn on the fighter but a failed grapple roll resulted in her being pushed to her death. This seemed to be the fighters preferred method of dispatching his enemies. When the specialist saw the mural he felt compelled to sing 'Ding dong the witch is dead' to escape his soul being eaten.
Lastly the players made quick work of a black mamba which earned them a valuable statue and 30 pieces of silver.
Overall there was lots of laughs and everybody seemed to enjoy themselves. It went quite well, though I think there were too many side quest clues resulting in players being quite confused at several points. Several times I expected them to die horribly but clearly luck was on their side as only one player died.
I plan on running a slimmed down version of this again at our local roleplay club so it will be interesting to see how it differs! The experience has left me feeling a lot more confident about running games in the future and I'm already working on another.
Thanks to Kathryn Jenkins, Oliver Palmer and Scott Dorward for being my guinea pigs! 

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Hello Sweetie!

Hello Sweetie!

My name is Victoria and if you're reading this then thank you for your support. I am new to the world of blogging but I will try to post regularly. I am always open to feedback so please let me know what you like and what you're not so keen on.

My intentions for this blog are as follows:

  • Session reports from any games I run
  • Tables, special items, monsters or scenarios I create that may be of use to other gamers
  • RPG reviews
  • Patterns and pics of the RPG accessories I make (usually dice bags)
So there you have it. I shall post again soon with something more substantial.

Victoria x