Storms Brewing Campaign Session One



All - here is a summary of my first game session. I am GMing 4 young ones here, one of whom had never played an RPG before. For this reason, I went more for atmosphere than anything else. I tweaked the encounter with the snake (making him less powerful), but didn't pull too many punchs... Everyone was barechested, so armor wasn't an issue.

(Apologies for the length)

I had the PC's collect in a town along the Pictish Coast (far left on the map) There were 4 Barbarians (A Cimmerian named Cael, a Nordhiemer named Vali, a Hyperborean named Forseti and a Black Kingdomer named Sakumba.) I glossed over how these four got here...

They joined a warband going out to fight the uppity Picts. Off camera, their group was slaughtered, with they as the only survivors. The scenario started with them tied to some tent posts. Cael and Sakumba were able to flex enough to crack the tent poles, bringing the tent down atop them, but freeing their hands. They scrambled out (in loin cloths only) and made a dash for the jungle. Three picts were close enough to engage while the cry and hue was raised.

Cael stumbled and was hit by an arrow. Forseti grabbed him and pulled him into the treeline, but the three pict warriors engaged. The 4 barbarians made short work of the picts by effectively dodging their hatchets and using their hamfists to pummel them to death. Cael and Forseti took wounds.

As the last pict fell, the group whirled and ran into the dark, the rest of the warband hard on their heals.

A few hours later, the barbarians beginning to tire (especially the hurt ones), Cael and Vali stumbled into a hole in the ground. Sakumba and Forseti were able to piece together that this area had once seen human habitation, as ruined stubs of rock walls were covered in mosses and creepers. Going down the hole, they noticed that there were rock steps leading into a basement long forgotten. A small room lead to an open room with a fountain, now green and non functional. Inside the larger room was a pile of crates, boxes and barrels which the barbarians promptly opened. Inside, they found rusted broadswords, rotted foodstuffs and a flint and tinder box that was still usable. After lighting four torches, they realized that they had uncovered a crevase in the wall that lead to a natural cave.

The barbarians were all for leaving, especially after a preliminary look around the natural cave led to the finding of a natural hallway and that the hair on the back of their neck began to rise for an unknown reason. Going back to the stairs found that the picts were still searching for them above, but that the hole was probably covered well enough (the vines and coverings originally covering the hole were not much displaced.)

Resigning themselves, they decided to go deeper into the cave.

Around a bend, they found the remains of a doglike creature. It's leg and rib bones were cracked and smashed. It's flesh long gone. A few hundred more feet, and the group found a scaley skin left on the ground in a hollow. Steeling themselves, they crept forward and in a final cavern found the huge snake that had left the skin. It was ghost white, with a huge maw and fangs that dripped poison. Even so, when it attacked, it attempted to constrict around them. Forseti was first attacked and then Vali was constricted, although for only seconds. The creature was not easy to hit, as it squirmed and slithered back and forth quickly and when they did hit, their rusty blades bounced off it's scaley armor more often than doing any real damage. Sakumba, seeing his comrades hurt and tiring, finally stepped forth and gave it a mighty blow. The snake, paralized with pain, did not dodge the next attack from Forseti and he did almost as much damage in his attack. The snake fell as both blades finished their deadly arcs.

Deciding that they needed rest and the best place was back in the foundation of the old house, they decided to go back. They rested the night and recovered much of their wounds. It took Vali the longest to get to sleep that night as a mild poison coursed through his veins, but in the end, he made some recovery and was ready to travel the next morning.

Being cautious, Sakumba followed by Forseti, Vali and Cael went up the steps and out the hole. As they spread out a bit, they were suddenly faced with the grim visages of the pict warband who rose out of their jungle hideaways and gave their warcry. Nine picts rushed forward, two getting hung up in the thicket as they tried to leap over vine covered rock walls. Sakumba and Forsetti dispatched two easily as Cael and Vali were best by 5 nearest them. A mere twelve seconds passed before Vali had fallen, with Cael following seconds later. Both had hit, but failed to discharge their foes. Now they lay upon the forest floor bleeding, their breathingn going shallower and shallower.

Sakumba, the black panther, and Forseti of Hyperboria, having dispatched their second opponents each crossed the short distance to their fallen friends adn engaged. The fight was dire and close, but they finally slew the remaining picts before collapsing with exhaustion. Pulling themselves up, they were able to bind the wounds of each other and the two fallen before dragging everyone away from the carnage.

The return trip through the jungle is no less heroic, but they four made it and are more experienced for it.

Feedback appreciated.

Nice encouter(s). One thing a little vague on, when they escaped it was night correct? Did you remember to factor in concealment for both the Barbarian Heroes and the Dire Picts?

Actually, it was the next morning and I didn't add any concealment. I figured that the Picts *could* find someone who could track and they tracked the PC's to this hole. I also figured that they'd prefer not to go down unknown holes in ruins and had them stage an ambush.

Thanks for the info though...I probably would have forgotten the concealment stuff anyway...

I'm sorry Murte...I misread the question...

When they escaped from the original pict village it WAS night and I did not add concealment...but that is because they knocked the tent down to get free....I figured, that was fairly noticable.

Sounds very exciting -- a great introduction to RPGs for your players!

If you plan on more Pictish adventures, you might enjoy Vincent Darlage's War on the Border games.
BhilJhoanz said:
Sounds very exciting -- a great introduction to RPGs for your players!

If you plan on more Pictish adventures, you might enjoy Vincent Darlage's War on the Border games.

Thank you very much...I'll do some reading!