Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Crown of Kings - Part 3

Not to be outdone by this module, I started the game at the same place after the total party kill of last time. I got a couple of replies from the Dark City Games forum and it looks like I have a new plan for GM bennies. Of course, after a bit of time at the SW forum, I decided that I would try round 3 if the following GM Bennies rule in place (thanks to Marc for his input):

A GM WC will receive 2 bennies as per the normal rules and will use them in the following instances:

1. Use as a soak roll whenever it receives 2 or more wounds.
2. Remove a shaken result if they are in melee and failed their Spirit roll.

If a GM WC does use a benny (not always possible as you can see), the character that caused the WC to use a benny will receive one.

There is talk about giving out a benny after every combat, but I haven’t felt that is necessary yet so I will hold off on that house rule unless I feel that I need it later.

I couldn’t tell you if it was better die rolling or the above rules, but I managed to kill the dragon without any real issues. A couple bennies are spent, but all characters are alive and well. It only took 5 turns to kill the dragon!

Turn 1: Dragon moves in and breathes fire on Marcus and Merula. Merula manages to move out of the way, but Marcus is stunned (shaken). Marcus fails to recover (must be patting out all those flames), but Merula casts deflection on Janine (spending a benny since she rolled a critical failure).

Turn 2: Dragon goes first again hitting Marcus for 2 wounds, but he soaks one. Nothing else really happens.

Turn 3: Janine does a wild attack to the head and manages to wound the dragon, but it was only one and due to the new rules, the dragon does try to soak it. Ramel heals Marcus (and could have healed 4 wounds).

Turn 4: Marcus failed to recover, but spends a benny; Causing a single wound by attacking the head. The dragon continues to not use its bennies. Dragon can only recover from shaken. Janine does another wild attack to the head and hits for a wound again. Now the dragon has 3 wounds, but hasn’t spent a single benny.

Turn 5: Marcus goes first and hits the dragon causing a fourth wound killing it!

It is odd to have the creature die without using any of its bennies. Especially on the last one when ‘it’ knows it will be killed! Had there been a rule that talks about the final blow, the dragon would have failed the soak roll on the first benny spent, but the second one were had worked to avoid the killing stroke. Of course, that gives Marcus 2 bennies (which puts him back at 3). I’m not sure if I like the way that felt, but for now, I’m going to take the win!

Now to the rest of this module…

Okay, I lied; due to the overwhelming success from before, I was curious if I was just having a good day or if it was something else. I decided to play the scenario one more time.

I did have an issue on the first turn; Marcus hits for 2 wounds on the dragon (he got a joker) and the soak roll didn’t stop any wounds. With the above rule, should the WC NPC try again? My thought is no since it doesn’t “exactly” know if that will be the ‘worst’ attack… but this brings the dragon to 3 wounds and could make the battle really quick! I decided to use the second bennies for the soak roll and it healed one wound. The dragon with two wounds, just recovers from shaken. The second turn starts with Janine hitting the dragon for a wound. The dragon now with 3 wounds can barely recover from shaken. Marcus attacks causes a wound and the dragon is unconscious, but the heroes quickly dispatch it.

Yep, two rounds of combat; with Marcus getting a joker on the first turn and all attacks being a wild swing to the head (at least +0 with no other modifiers, both were higher than that), the dragon went down unexpectedly quickly (not a single benny spent).

I decided to go ahead and finish the module and overall it was a lot of fun. If I remember correctly, this module was online for free before they decided to make these available in print and is probably one of the first. Their style, writing and game flow as gotten much better over the years so I’m a bit disappointed that this was there first conversion. Be warned, there are a couple of conversion issues, but nothing that can’t be solved with a little common sense. Well worth the money if you got the time for a solo game. Hopefully Dark City Games will be pursuing this crossover in the future.