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Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

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Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby benvoliothefirst » Monday October 30th, 2017 9:52am

Mentor’s wizened face frowned as he read the final lines of the dusty page of Loretome before him. “With a valiant leap, the elf lunged at the hulking gargoyle, in a desperate attempt to end the monster that had slaughtered his companions. The gargoyle anticipated the blow, and shifted his weight to avoid it. With a howl of violent delight, he swung his massive blade around and lodged it in the elf’s back, whose lifeless corpse crumpled to the floor.” There were no other lines beyond that. The page had appeared moments ago in the massive tome that somehow had already been written, and yet new pages were always coalescing before him. If he had known the contents of the page before now, he would never have sent the four companions on their doomed task.

His gambit had failed. Mentor closed the Loretome forcefully. The party he had sent out had been young, but experienced, and he had thought them fully prepared for the coming fight.

“The next group,” he thought, “will be better. I will see that it is so.”

--------------------------
And so ended Quest 1: The Trial! It took a while to get a bunch of 20/30-somethings together after work on Friday, with conflicting schedules and babysitters to hire, but we finally did it! I ran my first game of HeroQuest since I was about 15, and I guess I should've pulled some punches... I decided to have one goblin run away from the party and exit through the spiral stairway, bet I'll use him as a hook for the next adventure. I think I might allow the players to start with 20-30 gold apiece before the first quest, so they can buy some potions and be better prepared. I honestly thought they were going to sleep through the whole quest but they lost almost all their BP in the last room! It really is a game of doorways. We played the standard US rules and I allowed some fudging, including leaping up on top of furniture. Everyone had fun despite the total party wipe, and they're already strategizing for the next game.


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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby Anderas » Monday October 30th, 2017 11:06am

Ha :D i had a good laugh. Thanks for that! :lol:


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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby clmckay » Monday October 30th, 2017 11:58am

Nice! Thank you for the write up.

I am so torn on the Trial as an initial quest. My two biggest problems are the difficulty right at the start and Heroes seeing every type of basic monster right in the first quest. I'd like a bit more mystery and buildup in that regard.


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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby benvoliothefirst » Monday October 30th, 2017 12:36pm

I had always done The Trial as a kid, whether as the player or Zargon, since I didn't know about the different editions. I remember one or two total party kills but I'm not sure whether they were ALL in The Trial. I wanted to play our first campaign just using the vanilla rules, despite the wealth of custom stuff I've printed, just to take the temperature of the players. Next time I start with some different players I should try The Maze and see how much easier is!


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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby benvoliothefirst » Saturday July 28th, 2018 2:47am

I seem to have lost my notes on our second play session, so the short version is that we had some familiar faces at the table and some newbies, they successfully completed their second attempt at The Trial, and went on to successfully Rescue (of) Sir Ragnar! Since they had already attempted The Trial, I decided to move Verag the Gargoyle into a different room to change things up.

Tonight we played the third and fourth quests and added some more custom rules! Our play group got three new additions, Matt and Mike from SNHU and Don formerly from SNHU. Points to Ambrose and Emily for being the only consistent players for all three sessions!

We had previously used Jacob Busby's Supplemental Rules - Random Events table to great success, so we continued that today. I had decided that we should only roll for the "Fate" table, as we called it, when there are no monsters on the board on the EWP's turn. I felt that this helped to limit the players lining up at the door and dawdling, but didn't overwhelm the rest of the game. It seemed to balance well, too. Since we had an extra player, I added a few monsters to the quests, quite sparingly. Don played the Trollslayer, and I haven't decided yet whether I'm going to adopt the rule that each time he goes berserk he loses a mind point. The existing rule that he can go berserk whenever he wants for the duration of a combat, but temporarily loses a defend die in the process, seemed to be a pretty effective deterrent.

In the first goblin-filled room in Lair of the Orc Warlord, the heroes decided that they must have stumbled into a goblin "birthday party," and there was much cake thrown around in the midst of the melee. Bar-Bar the Barbarian attempted to shove the birthday table out of his way, but to his dismay found that the table was firmly bolted to the floor. The next turn, a woodworm caused the very same table to collapse into dust! Towards the end of the quest, one of the orcs in the penultimate room took it upon himself to warn Ulag that the heroes were coming, so he disappeared into the small room with the chest so he could ambush them. Despite this, they took his head back to the palace and there were no casualties.

I felt that we needed a more atmospheric "town" experience than just buying things off the Armory board, so I decided to use the between quests hazards table and settlement rules from 1995 Warhammer Quest's Roleplay Book. I'm condensing the overview of those rules into a cheat sheet so I can share them here. The party decided to aim for a short trip to a village. After an uneventful first week of travel, the second found them stumbling back into the very same clearing from which they had left the dungeon two weeks ago, and spent another two weeks getting to the village. Fortunately on their way they found a mystic pool in the mountains that granted a few of the party members some limited precognition and they earned some saves from future injury. When they arrived in town, Ambrose's "Dw'Arf McStuffins" bought himself a helmet which came in VERY handy in the following quest. After a night at the alehouse where Don's "Wookie Slayer" the Trollslayer won an armwrestling contest, ripping the arms from several other patron's sockets, he attempted to buy a similar helm for himself. But due to the stock rules from WHQ, he was informed that McStuffins had bought the last helmet. The fearful shopkeep apologized profusely to the now-infamous trollslayer and begged to be left his arms. Apparently a shady character had been spotted by several of the party members and was eventually captured and a reward was posted, lining the pockets of the adventures before they moved on to Rescue Prince Magnus' gold. Matt's "Bar-Bar the Barbarian" also spent a night at the tavern, where he awoke in the morning with an airbrushed-panel-van-worthy tattoo of Bar-Bar himself, standing atop the corpse of a slain dragon with the words "Mitey Worrier" inscribed below, covering his entire back.

In Quest 4, the party came dangerously close to losing Wookie Slayer to an unfortunately-placed pit trap. After climbing out, Don failed his attempt to leap the same pit and fell right back in, taking another point of damage and losing sight of the rest of the party for several turns. His shouts of rage echoed down the hallway as he worked his little legs to get caught back up before the rest of the party found all the good loot. I added a couple extra monsters since the party was getting dangerously close to wrapping the whole thing up without taking any significant damage. The two goblins in the final room became Mummies, one of whom was infected with tomb rot from a previous fate roll. I also put two fimir in the empty secret door room, and after they had rescued the chests, I sounded the alarm and sent two skeletons to retrieve it. Fortunately the party of 5 were smart enough to leave the trollslayer and barbarian's hands free to fight off the feeble undead and successfully rescued the chests.
Last edited by benvoliothefirst on Saturday July 28th, 2018 9:25am, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby Anderas » Saturday July 28th, 2018 8:12am

That 95 Warhammer Quest Role play book sounds interesting indeed. Thanks for the hint!

Few months ago I searched the darklight settlement book for similar things. Darklight is a 2018 version of Warhammer Quest.


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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby The Admiral » Sunday July 29th, 2018 6:13am

clmckay wrote:Nice! Thank you for the write up.

I am so torn on the Trial as an initial quest. My two biggest problems are the difficulty right at the start and Heroes seeing every type of basic monster right in the first quest. I'd like a bit more mystery and buildup in that regard.


Agreed. The Trial is not a good starting point. It is too hard for a fresh group of Heroes. But it seems they had fun though. It might be better for their encouragement and interest to let them start next with Sir Ragnar and play The Trial as the final quest. This way they will remember the difficulties they had before, but this time they will be seasoned and equipped warriors!
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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby Stoner81 » Sunday July 29th, 2018 6:55am

Nice write up's! I like the idea of the roleplay aspect for between adventures and I do believe I have that book if it's the one I am thinking of.

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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby knightkrawler » Sunday July 29th, 2018 8:11am

The Admiral wrote:
clmckay wrote:Nice! Thank you for the write up.

I am so torn on the Trial as an initial quest. My two biggest problems are the difficulty right at the start and Heroes seeing every type of basic monster right in the first quest. I'd like a bit more mystery and buildup in that regard.


Agreed. The Trial is not a good starting point. It is too hard for a fresh group of Heroes. But it seems they had fun though. It might be better for their encouragement and interest to let them start next with Sir Ragnar and play The Trial as the final quest. This way they will remember the difficulties they had before, but this time they will be seasoned and equipped warriors!


The more this assessment of The Trail comes up - cause it does, a lot - the more I think it was written with hero deaths in mind and as such, it has its merits as a starting quest.
The Trials does these things:
- it introduces all types of monsters
- it introduces all types of furniture
- it introduces a specific quest objective
- it introduces problems and death and thus, the solution to death
--> which is, the other players continue until the quest is won or lost, with the players
- being introduced how a quest is won in spite of heroes dying
In the end, the drama - if the quest is won - is not too imposing, as the player of a dead hero starts the next quest with the same hero anew, losing nothing.
There's other things the heroes can learn and practise: stay together or seperate to achieve another goal, with one hero blocking a door, for example.
I am trying to say, it is meant as a starting quest, and death and losing should be taught early on.

That being said, I do think it should be played with the spells.
My first quest pack, Trials and Tribulations, incorporates Matt Busby's The Arena, then The Maze, and then The Trial as a trilogy of learning quests.
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Re: Ben's Coworkers Play HeroQuest - Narrative Wrap-Ups!

Postby Stoner81 » Sunday July 29th, 2018 11:35am

knightkrawler wrote:In the end, the drama - if the quest is won - is not too imposing, as the player of a dead hero starts the next quest with the same hero anew, losing nothing.
There's other things the heroes can learn and practise: stay together or seperate to achieve another goal, with one hero blocking a door, for example.
I am trying to say, it is meant as a starting quest, and death and losing should be taught early on.

That being said, I do think it should be played with the spells.
My first quest pack, Trials and Tribulations, incorporates Matt Busby's The Arena, then The Maze, and then The Trial as a trilogy of learning quests.


I agree with this though I have always played it using the UK rules which means that each monster only has 1 Body Point which makes it a lot easier. I will see if I can locate The Area quest and I might add it but if it's a home brew one then I probably won't.

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