6/27/13

"Their cold leathery hands..." a GURPS Session in the Majestic Wilderlands

I recently summarized three GURPS Majestic Wilderlands sessions and this current post will give Delvin's take on our most recent session. Tim (Gothridge Manor) has a excellent summary of the session and Chris (The Clash of Spear on Shield) captures some of the one-liners of the night (plus some from the previous week in Montporte Dungeon campaign. On Monday night, Rob (Bat in the Attic) was at his best as a GM and we had a nice mix of nail-biting action and immersive role-playing (the later being the hallmark of Rob's Majestic Wilderlands). The session featured a chase scene where, at Tim's suggestion, we used the Pathfinder Gamemastery Chase Cards Deck. We were able to translate them to GURPS on the fly and the cards generated a wildly unpredictable and fun hour of gaming.

We started the session where we had left off last time, in Dorn. We were ready to head out to Oxcross to warn the Baron that the Thothian mages might take action against him. I will let Delvin, my dwarf PC, take it from here.

We knew we needed to get over to Oxcross in a hurry. From Dorn, it would be an all day ride but maybe, just maybe, we could get to the Baron before the Thothian-types did any harm. We would be passing by the construction site for our inn, so we could do a quick check on that as well. Or so we thought.

When we arrived at our inn, the place was empty. Normally, there are at least a dozen humans working, milling around, and doing all the stuff that you humans are wont to do. This time, however, there was no one around. No one except a solitary zombie. Brom (Chris) and drew our weapons and cautiously rode towards the zombie. He was easy pickins for us.

In the meantime, Durge (Tim) noticed a big group of humans far off in the distance. The three of us rode out to the northeast, towards the crowd. It turned out to be our inn workers being chased by about thirty or so zombies. Not good.

Brom and Durgo stretched out a rope between them and trotted on either side of the zombies, knocking down a good number of them in the process. They then took up a position between the zombies and our inn folk. In the meantime, I started hacking away at the zombies in the rear, trying to draw their attention away from the group. I also enjoying cleaving them with my battleaxe. It is a good thing when you can mix fun with good tactical sense.

Brom told the inn workers to head north. We tried to engage the zombies enough to get them to follow us west while not getting overwhelmed by them in the process [editor's note: This is a really important consideration in GURPS]. Brom had a bit of difficulty as we were getting ourselves organized and he almost was clawed off of his pony. As for me, I was really careful to keep them away, as I did not want their cold leathery hands caressing my beautiful dwarven skin.

We finally got the zombies turned around and they gave chase as we rode off to the west. We tried not to ride too fast, as none of us excel at riding. No sense going fast, falling off, and becoming zombie snacks. We ran into one problem after another...negotiating down a steep hill, jumping over a fallen tree, and riding through a bunch of snakes. At each point, at least one of us had difficulties, which led to some of the zombies catching us for a moment. But at each difficulty more of the zombies fell behind. The snakes caused us particular difficulty as two of the mounts were bit and they turned out to be quite poisonous.

We still had a few zombies hot on our trail when we ran headlong into a small river...too fast and too deep to wade across. We could have let the mounts have a go at swimming, but we thought our chances would be better if we could find a ford. We turned south and found a ford within a hundred yards. The last of the zombies tried to cross and were swept away. Such a beautiful sight for dwarven eyes to behold. Really, none of this would be necessary if you humans were a bit more careful in disposing of your dead.

Durgo dosed the ponies with a neutralize poison potion and we headed back to the site of our inn. From there, we finally made our way to Oxcross. We were berated by some petty human functionary for stirring up the undead out on the Plain of Cairns. However, we were finally able to convince a higher up to let us see the Baron. It turned out that the Baron was indisposed; he was under the weather after a visit from a stranger.

We didn't know who the stranger was, but we knew he was a Thothian looking for the Baron's scroll about the Plain of Cairns. We had them get the Baron up and moving while someone else went to the check the library. The Baron turned out to be recovering but the scroll was gone.

The Baron immediately understood the gravity of the situation. He agreed to seek redress from the Thothians while we agreed to head back out the Plain of Cairns to get to the bottom of the evil lurking there. He equipped us with some magic items to help us, which showed him to be above average as far as humans go. Almost generous like a dwarf.

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