Sunday, July 6, 2014

Warring States Pilot Episode


Thanks to:


  • The party begins in Hebi, a fortified village that serves as a way station for Zhao goods travelling from Nao to Zhao and Zongshan Lands. Their Patrons, the Zhi and Jin, were killed and dispossed but they still had some contacts that arranged them to own a warehouse where they can try to move goods to Nao or Zhao lands. 
  • Hebi is quaint with many small farms, more than what is needed to support the 50 Zhao troops (up to 300 soldeirs because many are on patrol) who protect the river from pirates. The town is run by a lady named Zhuyi who manages the farms for the Soldiers. The captain is Dongming, who doest like the look of the characters. 
  • When the PCs get their warehouse and bill to trade, Dongming opposes it and says he does not serve anyone but the Zhao. He points at the old seals, which were until recently (this year), the authority of the Zhou - but now the Zhou are puppets of the Wei and this well decorated Zhao commander knows his loyalties very well. He punished the soldier who let them in, and punished him again for trying to make an excuse. 
  • Well Yuan or Zhexue, would not stand for this crap and offered to read it to the Commander, who calmly asked his soldiers to draw their spears, escort them out, and stab them if they resisted. 
  • The group escorted outside had to make their own way. They surveyed the land, they had supplies and was able to find out a lot of the farms were squatting and were not really "assigned" to them. Farther from the Hebei irrigation, they were not as productive. They moved further noth and found an abandoned manor, and what remains of a modest fief. Struggling farmers with poor irrigation. Donghua was their head man, he was in Hebi earlier asking for aid but turned down. The Party offered their aid in return of getting the land they can farm. The party was not made up of farmers, so what happened is that they ended up bartering their civilization building skills for improving the life of the farmers. In time they did improve the lives of the farmers but the threat of raiders eventually materialized.  
  • Donghua has brought the problem before, and the team hastened to fix it. YiQin was quarrying for materials when he found a limestone cave suitable for defense. It is about 6 miles from the town. Aiguo patrolled and was able to spot a scout. When Xiao-Xiao was this scrawny orphan who helps him out and messages "Big" Yuan and Zhexue to follow. They were surprisingly able to stalk the scout when Aiguo alerted him, and DaYuan chased the scout down. 2 minutes of running and the big man caught up, causing the Scout to turn around and draw his hatchet. The pause allowed Aiguo and Zhexue to catch up. Zhexue grab scout and managed to hold his weapon arm when the others tried to pile on. It was easy and they had managed to capture the scout. 
    • So they proceeded to torture the scout and get information from him. Being a scout, he does have a lot of information. The scout had no clue that, "Da" Yuan hacked the head off and put it on a pike which rallied some of the villagers. Its 60 men, mountain folk that live by raiding and their own small farms and foraging. When its cold enough to travel south, they raid to supplement their stores and grab some booty along the way. 
  • Xiao-Xiao and Da Yuan decide to scout and try to pick off the bandits, even though they are poorly skilled for the task and the odds against him. The rest had to focus on rallying the villagers and only 15 of the adults decided to join, among them farmers who have nothing to lose, and aid Zhexue and YiQin. Aiguo maintained the perimeter.  
  • Xiao-Xiao and Da Yuan made some smart decisions, and were able to catch a small flank guard of 4. On their prowl, they were discovered and Da Yuan, closed in against them. Untrained in warfare the Big merchant cut off the arm of the first man, and staggered the second. He had the benefit of a heavy cuirass and a good bronze axe. He took many wounds, hatchets cut muscle and hit bone, long knives went deep but fortunately avoided arteries. The huge man was so muscled that mass buffered what would have cut down any normal man. Xiao-Xiao stabbed at those stunned by his great blows, they were more worried about the aggressive warrior. (random hit location rolls). After cleave the head of the last opponent, (failed HT to recover from stun for the others), Da Yuan collapses and barely able to tend to his wounds the little orphan struggled with the man three times her mass. Fortunately Zhexue, in his medical and meditative haze had the inspiration to seek them out and found them through Aiguo. They all brought him back, while leave calling cards of their butchery.  
  • When they returned, the village is estatic, they have arms but their biggest asset is wounded and need of bed rest (-14HP, ST14). So near death, and covered with wounds staving off infection would be the first threat they experienced.

Session End

  • I will need to make a map of the village. Similar to those Harn Maps. Terrain, irrigation, and farms. The traps as well. Good thing I have some time. 
  • everyone got 2cps and 3 which they decided how they are granted to the other PCs. Example is Steve gave 2cp for Dan, each for a leg, which will go into his rolls against infection and crippling (Dan has HT14). 
  • We have one new player and will have a session two weeks from now, 18th. 
  • I use the Optional Rule: Influence Success Rolls in B347 which allows them to spend CP (which they have a short supply of) to alter success. 
  • All players are new to gurps. 
  • I will need to make merchant professional template, since a result of 12 seems to occur a lot in the background roll. 
  • Next time I'll try to have roll20 on screen share so that my mug is not whats on the video most of the time. 
  • This is very sandbox. I had many things prepared, but not so much where the PCs wanted to go. My preparation there was my extensive knowledge of logistics (from the industry I work in, construction and manufacturing, and other related hobbies and interests). Good thing I prepared  - the Seasonal length, and the activities per season of farmers, then there are the farming activities and how many acres/hectars that can be processed (the basics from Low Tech companions 3). It gave a sense of what resources the PCs had to build their civilization. The path they decided is taking a fallen manor and build their own estate from there. Far from other lords, but with a river that lets them come close to Nao and another major place to trade. The scale of time will definitely be in seasons with points of intense activity and problems. 
    • Here is something to consider, the problems that go to them, the more they dont have to go to these problems.
    • I have a lot in store for this kind of adventure path. 

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