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Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Discuss Quests, Cards, Monsters etc from the Kellar's Keep Quest Pack.

Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby Anderas » Saturday May 20th, 2017 11:31am

Kellar's Keep is a quest book with ten quests in a row.

In the introduction it says that it is urgent, the emperor is needing help NOW yaddah yaddah... to delay the help then over ten quests doesn't help to get a sense of urgency into the players.
In the hundred-years-war between france and britain, there were sieges lasting a year so the emperor should stop whining and take one or two weeks more waiting time for a given. That removes the pressure to play all the quests in a row.

Me, i like to do some overland questing, and i love to throw in an occasional stand-alone quest, be it to follow the hint for a great treasure, be it to hunt down the occasional escaped Monster Boss. The emperor will have to wait. :mrgreen:

So i would like to separate the quests into small packs that can be played independently. It also means that it will be less faithful to the original quest book than some other adaptations here, but i am actually hoping that you don't become my enemies because of that. :shock: :D
I was also reading KK's Kellar's Caer and i liked what i did see, but i am not yet fully convinced about the storyline in there.

Currently we have
1 - The Great Gate - It is filled with Orcs and Goblins and has that nice secret-door-trap, but it doesn't contribute to the storyline.
2 - The Warrior Halls - It has plenty of traps and two ways, one of which is fully avoidable. Again, no contribution to the storyline, but i think it is quite nice.
3 - The Spiral Passage - It introduces the Indiana Stone and has a fake exit door. Not needed for the story, but it's a nice entry to another quest.

4 - The Dwarven Forge - This one is the first to give you a part of Grin's stone Map. One could plug this quest to any of the first three without losing content.
5 - Hall of the Dwarven Kings - The burial place of four ancient kings holds a a piece of the map and the hunting party coming after the Heroes. Again, you could plug it to any of the three first.
6 - The Great Citadel - contains Gragor and a part of the Stone Map. A Great Citadel would fit best directly after a Great Gate, no?
7 - The Eastern Passage - Contains the last part of Grin's Stone Map, the orc Ograk, A Gargoyle surrounded by Traps and a faked eastern passage. This quest sounds like two-in-one for me: Find the last part of Grin's stone map should be one, and the other one should be "find the eastern passage" (which is finally blocked)

8 - Belorn's mine - Lots of Falling Blocks, and an alternative route to circumvent the eastern passage. The falling Blocks can nicely separate the Heroes, or can separate Men at arms from the Heroes. :) This is the entry actually leading to Karak Varn.
9 - The East Gate, containing Borokk attacking Mind Points, a shape shifter, and a gate that opens only after a Mind Point test. It's quite generic, and it is a pass-through-only quest. The Map layout could actually be a good predecessor to the eastern passage, that two-in-one quest.

10 - Grin's Crag: Finally we go through Grin's Crag. Target is to open a Door in the top right corner, to free the emperor. However, For some reason the stone map doesn't help at all in this quest, which is sad. Well, it shows grin's crag, but in so low-resolution that no-one i know ever cared to take a look at it.


So i propose to use 1, 2, 3, 9 as entry points to 4, 5, 6, 7 and make logically connected pairs of them:
1- The Great Gate leads to 6 - The great Citadel.
2 - The Warrior Halls leads to 4 - The Dwarven Forge
3 - The Spiral Passage leads to 5 - Hall of the Dwarven Kings.
9 - The East Gate will contain two things: A piece of Grin's Stone Map and hints plus a door to 7 - the Eastern Passage, which turns out to be blocked.

So finally the heroes enter
8 - Belorn's Mine as another entry to 10 - Grin's Crag.

So that makes five game evenings with two quests each, and an story-based acceptable opportunity to buy equipment between the quest pairs.
I also propose to make a finer resolution stone map so that it actually becomes useful - perhaps on the quest map there could be some more rooms, but filled with deadly traps, so that it finally becomes useful to read the map and avoid those rooms.

Side quest opportunities:
- Gragor can escape and set up a side quest for the Heroes.
- The dwarven kings can become anything between one and four side quests, if their ghosts become either agressive, if they start to annoy living dwarven kings, or need some paraphernalia to become quiet again. Maybe one of them just walks around there, has to be catched and buried to be quiet again. :D. Finally, the last one of them maybe needs a second journey to the dwarven forge because only an axe hardened there can harm him?
- Ograk can escape and try to hunt the heroes down later.

Let me read your thoughts about it!


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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby knightkrawler » Saturday May 20th, 2017 12:23pm

I also had this idea - and it has become a plan - to disrupt Wizards of Morcar's five quests
and put the four wizards into four quest packs.
WoM has literally no good ideas in it, anyway.

I already introduced the Orc Shaman.
The Storm Master will be a Beastman Druid, the High Priest an Elven Witch Bitch (maybe by the name of Kessandria),
and the Necromancer will be part of my Return of the Witch-Lord revision to give it a major character.

And that's what I suggest to anyone revisiting Kellar's Keep:
insert that Orc Shaman from Wizards of Morcar.
Kellar's Keep needs a Big Bad AND his beefed up bodyguard Orcs.
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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby j_dean80 » Saturday May 20th, 2017 2:07pm

knightkrawler wrote:I also had this idea - and it has become a plan - to disrupt Wizards of Morcar's five quests
and put the four wizards into four quest packs.
WoM has literally no good ideas in it, anyway.

I already introduced the Orc Shaman.
The Storm Master will be a Beastman Druid, the High Priest an Elven Witch Bitch (maybe by the name of Kessandria),
and the Necromancer will be part of my Return of the Witch-Lord revision to give it a major character.

And that's what I suggest to anyone revisiting Kellar's Keep:
insert that Orc Shaman from Wizards of Morcar.
Kellar's Keep needs a Big Bad AND his beefed up bodyguard Orcs.


Always thought an official Quest Pack with only 5 Quests is kind of sad.
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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby knightkrawler » Saturday May 20th, 2017 3:01pm

j_dean80 wrote:Always thought an official Quest Pack with only 5 Quests is kind of sad.


That one is sad, but for other reasons.
I agree with Anderas.
With the variability of resources we can play with,
I want storylines to be shorter to keep as much change while playing as possible.

Two-, three-, or four-part quest arcs are ideal for the reasons Anderas has given.
But storylines and plots can be re-connected, interspersed, and the overall Archbitch Morcar is the red thread anyway.

It's a plot device in original HQ, repeatedly.
For example, you kill Ulag and two quests later, his son tries to take revenge on you.
Or the Bitchlord trilogy in the game system quest book, then Kellar's Keep, then again the Bitchlord in his own quest pack...
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Always make more promises than you can break.


Rewards:
Grin's Stone Map Created a Hot Topic. Participated in a Miniature Exchange. Killed a mighty Fimir! Shattered a Skeleton! Destroyed a Zombie! Crushed a powerful Chaos Warrior! Smashed a massive Gargoyle! Encountered a menacing Chaos Warlock!
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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby Anderas » Saturday May 20th, 2017 3:19pm

When reading Wizards of Morcar I got the impression that it was the long waited for expansion for the wizard.

You get some new wizard enemies.
You get new spells for the wizard.
You get men at arms and the only one piling enough gold to hire them is.... the wizard.

Then they made some uninspired quests to introduce them but let the real work for the players: to design meaningful quests around them.
Worse, in the Storyline they let Morcar directly talk. Before, he was always mentioned but never directly shown. That's a huge break of style and removes mystery from the game. If you do that, the story feeling can be dead forever afterwards.

The Orc Shaman is a nice agent of the Orcs indeed. As Kellar's Keep is all about Orcs and maybe dwarfs, anything reinforcing one or both axes should be included. Thanks for that remark KK!


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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby Count Mohawk » Saturday May 20th, 2017 8:02pm

Quick note on Grin's Map: While the map is low-resolution, it does show the most direct path from the start point to the Crag. The most important of these hints is that the Map says to go to the left at the start; if they go in the other direction, they get trapped by the Cloud of Chaos in the dead-ends on the right. There are a couple of other unmarked rooms filled with ambushes, which the Heroes would potentially be able to avoid as well.


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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby Anderas » Sunday May 21st, 2017 12:24am

It does.

Image

However, there is context missing. For example, it doesn't show where Grin's Crag is. Without further information, i would assume that the top right corner is a dead end...
I still intend to add a little bit more details, so that it actually gets understandable.

I made a new version now showing a little bit more... :)
For a high-quality-printing version click on the picture. I guess i made it a little bit too big. :D
It is the "unpunched" version from Torilen so you can cut a bit of the excess to have a decent sized map.

Image


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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby thequester » Sunday May 21st, 2017 4:12pm

First of all: Wow, I've never noticed that the pieced together "Grin's map" actually depicts the quest layout! :o

Secondly, having now compared them, I'd say that a player getting "into the role" of a hero studying Grin's map might actually think as follows:

1. Matching the room layout on Grin's map with the HQ board thus finding out "how to rotate the map" (player realization)
2. Knowing that Grin's map shows the way to Grin's Crag (in-game knowledge)
3. Knowing that "the crag is narrow" (in-game knowledge)
4. Seeing that Grin's map has heavy dwarven scribbling right at the narrowest part of the dungeon (in-game realization)
5. That must mean that's where Grin's crag is! :o

So, as long as players are aware (told?) that the four little cardboard pieces, pieced together, actually depicts the quest layout, shouldn't they be able to guess the way to the crag? :D


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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby knightkrawler » Sunday May 21st, 2017 11:25pm

In that size you can actually see that Grin's Crag is to the top right!
It's a tiny version of the actual tile. Amazing.
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Always make more promises than you can break.


Rewards:
Grin's Stone Map Created a Hot Topic. Participated in a Miniature Exchange. Killed a mighty Fimir! Shattered a Skeleton! Destroyed a Zombie! Crushed a powerful Chaos Warrior! Smashed a massive Gargoyle! Encountered a menacing Chaos Warlock!
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Re: Overland Questing and Kellar's Keep

Postby Anderas » Monday May 22nd, 2017 12:17am

I photoshopped it there :)


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