Saturday, November 23, 2013

The Beastmen Cometh: A Session of Dungeon Crawl Classics

I've been running a Dungeon Crawl Classics campaign for several months now, and I look forward to every session. The three players each bring something unique to the game and have all contributed player backgrounds and adventure logs to our Obsidian Portal page.

At the last session, one of the players showed us the awesome spell-book cover that he had printed up for his growing list of spells:

He claims that's how you spell Benny the Magnificent in Ukrainian.

As a GM, it's a fantastic feeling when the players contribute to background histories, adventure logs, and game details--it means that somehow, I've managed to do something right.

Here's an excerpt from our most recent session, as recounted by Benny, the Magnificent!

"In the middle of the night, Brume alerted me that more of the Beastmen were approaching. I roused Ming and then realized that Floyd was on guard duty so I called for the others to awake and arm themselves. Star was already warned by one of his runes proving him quite the capable Runecaster.

As the Beastmen approached, I conjured a few large dogs right in their midst to distract them and buy us some time to prepare. Star followed suit and then Daphne and her apprentice sought out the blessings of Amun-Tur. I could easily see that they are favored by their God, because they were wreathed in a Holy light and I swore I could hear angelic singing*. Even so, I moved closer to protect Daphne and her Deity blessed me with additional magical power for protecting His chosen.

I used this extra power and channeled a harrowing volley of Fire Arrows of Fate laying the enemy low and breaking their morale. They fled in haste and we thought better than rush after them into the dark forest and a possible ambush. A few of the Beastmen had fallen because of the dogs Star and I had conjured so we went over to investigate.

Floyd was closest and he quickly pulled out his cleaver to perform another dissection. This time, the focus of his research was less Beast and more man which made it all the more disturbing. I heard Daphne gasp as he quickly reduced the creature to its component pieces. It could be that he is a Blade of Fate, but I fear that Floyd may be descending towards madness. I will need to seek direction from my patron before deciding how to handle him."

Saturday, November 2, 2013

And It Came From Vietnam: Miniatures Battles Using Roll20

Sometimes I can't find people near me to play the games I want, or I don't have what I need to play a game.  That's when using Roll20 to play over the wire can fill that void.  I've played three games of Crossfire now; normally a miniatures game set in WW2, we are using the Incoming variant rules to set the game during the Vietnam War.  This is Dale's account of the first battle we fought.  If you'd like to read more of Dale's excellent battle narratives, and see the maps and counters we're using, check out his blog:

You can also join us in the Vietnam Crossfire Community on Google+, if you'd like to play.

Mission: Raid with AirMobile Insertion for Intelligence Gathering.

This operation began with an insertion and a movement onto the map in line with 1st platoon on the right and 2nd platoon on the left. M-60's were placed between the 1st and 2nd and the 3rd and 4th squads in both platoon and the company headquarters group moved about 20-25 meters to the rear of the company line. Advancing through the woods, the company line stopped and took cover at the tree line. They had reached the indicated Brown line on the map (dirt road). 

Steamboat 6, the company CO, advanced 1-1 and 1-2, the first and second squad of first platoon across the road to a copse of trees that offered cover and the platoon commander of 1st platoon, Steamboat 1, crossed with them, covering the west of the road. The 1st platoon's M-60 and it's two remaining fire teams set up covering positions to cover the elevated roadway. The roadway rose about 2 feet above the surrounding fields covered with grasses and shrubs dotting the landscape. Steamboat 2 waited about 5 minutes and then advanced with his 1st squad across the field while the other three and his heavy weapon held back.
I came in from the north. He was waiting for me south of the road.
The 2nd platoon's 1st squad had just started to climb up and over the berm when automatic weapons fire opened from directly in front of them and then intensified as another well-directed fire team also opened fire, immediately causing American casualties. From another location, a second fire team opened fire on 1st platoon's advanced troops, pinning one of the fire teams. Continued fire from enemy forces continued to pin the 1st platoon's fire team and unfortunately suppressed the other, despite the efforts of Steamboat 2, the platoon CO.

The concentrated forces of 2nd platoon made a sweeping move around to the left and crossed the road, assaulting with grenades while covered with machine gun fire, attacking the enemy position that had hit the first squad. All the enemy forces had tried to withdraw; the combined US forces had caused several casualties and captured three EPW's (Enemy Prisoner of War). A medevac helo was locally sited and was already inbound at the time on the violet smoke thrown by 2nd platoon and it landed on the road berm, away from enemy fire and took off with both the EPW's and the American casualties that had been picked up by one of the US fire teams.

As the medevac helo lifted and returned to base, it was taken under fire by additional enemy units that had appeared near the western edge of the tree line but other than incidental damage, the helo returned without incident. Meanwhile, 1st platoon elements used this opportunity to withdraw back across the road under overnight fire from the combined machine guns and the River Rats returned to their LZ on the other side of the tree lines, mission accomplished.