So close. Finally, on the 3rd attempt, everyone in my RPG group managed to get round the table at the same time this week. As the grand finale of Warhammer's "Death on The Reik" was looming we wanted everyone at the session to see the end out. So rather predictably we ran out of time and the final half sessions worth will have to played out next time. I suppose at least there will be time to spend all that XP before they go home.
Trying to get this adventure concluded is reminding me of the Sir Lancelot attack in The Holy Grail - it's taken an inordinate amount to time to get here and there is a rediculous amount of hacking and slashing once the moment comes.
The evening had 2 battles in it, which is where the time went. We have 4 players running 6 characters at the moment so when the opposition are added in they can take up some time, especially as a few of the PCs have multiple attacks. The final main battle was had (pictured top) in the lab. Which brings me onto my first topic - the use of themes in the gaming environment.
All the way through the Inner Bailey area of the castle the players have been entertained, confused and intimidated by some of the bizarre and imaginative encounters set in the castle. The final main battle happens in a mock-up of Frankenstein’s lab complete with monster. Now while this is a cool setup and was capable of throwing some choices for the players, after all the off the wall encounters this was summed up by one of the gang mid description as "Oh, this is Frankenstein’s lab". A nice setting for a battle, with a certain amount of familiarity, but in this case I couldn't help but think that it was slightly out of kilter with the rest of the castle and perhaps an anticlimax.
Now I know some of you will just say, "You're the GM, if you weren't happy with it you should have changed it", but the thought hadn't occurred until the scene was being played out - so too late. Having not written the adventure myself the change in flavour at the end passed me by on reading.
The point of this is really just the thought - if you are designing a close series of encounters, be they chaos, forest, subterranean or urban try to keep the feel of the series throughout for a more satisfying experience. You can change it for the next set.