Wednesday 28 July 2010

You Need Friends

Another session in Castle Wittgenstein and the pace has well and truly changed. Almost gone are those memories of tactical battle and assault as the Inner Bailey slowly unravels it's bizarre wonders in a series of separate locations. SPOILER ALERT - if you plan to play "The Enemy Within" campaign or the "Death On The Reik" supplement stop reading now - you have been warned!

The writers of are on top form for this section of the adventure. Most locations are tackled (as written) in isolation, but set the players on an unsettling journey through the effects of chaos magic. They don't know what may lie behind each door, and the groans of worry on the request for a willpower roll are a joy to behold as they experience new horrors in sight and sound. The good thing here is that although everyone they meet is mutated and warped by their exposure this does not necessarily change them into a homicidal maniac. Odd and deranged, yes, but not nasty. In fact last night’s theme could almost be called "Friends", albeit in a twisted, dark Warhammer Fantasy way.

This RPG post is a bit more of a session report than normal, as one of the players was missing and so missed all his character's fun, cockroach eating, off wine drinking and female companion flirting with a giant man/roach mutant! That'll teach you to watch that Chinese food, WeeBaldie!

First encounter was with the figurehead of the Family - Ludwig Von Wittgenstein. He has hidden himself away at the top of a tower as the exposure of warpstone had turned him into a six foot cockroach mutant, kept company by his friends - thousands of real cockroaches which scuttled inches deep on the floors, walls and dropped from the ceilings. Ludwig studies the arts, sings, plays the harpsichord and it utterly charming and friendly. So much so that even our notoriously unforgiving party, after crunching through a couple of floors, chatted, had a brandy and left him be (despite the earlier precautions of pouring lamp oil round the floor).

Entering the Main residence to get out of the storm overhead, the old mutated butler greeted them at the door way and offered them food and wine (even if it was months past its best) before wandering off for a snooze (one that the thief Grendel made sure he'll never wake from - "just in case"). Following the stairs to the dungeons brought the party into conflict with the Ogre jailer before finding the deranged and broken figure of the old village physician hanging in a cage and proclaiming his torturer his friend and carer (see more friends). Left for the hopeless wretch he was the party released some villagers and even a tax man from the cells before heading upstairs where they encountered one Ludwigs son's - a mutant who lived in a small room where he also lived with his friends - stuffed animals (birds, boars, bears, birdfolk, mutants, beastmen, servants, etc) all on display to keep him company. He flew into a frenzied mad rage when one of the party touched one of his friends though and was quickly put out of his misery.

Grendel found a replacement glass eye for herself though, so that was nice. Heindrich also finally managed to draw his magic sword. He's spent every session since about April or May trying to pass a willpower roll to do this (much to everyones amusement), so you can appreciate the sense of occassion when this herculian task was accomplished! He's found it to be a non-magical armour negating warpblade. Maybe next time maybe we'll actually meet someone wearing any armour so he can take advantage of it...

Next session should see the climax to this segment as the gang close in on the main heads of the household and the warpstone meteorite they seek...

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