Heroic ‘One-off' Adventures
Your players been indulging in too many video games? Have your attention spans shortened? Are you too over stimulated to bother with carefully investigating the intriguing events of a cult growing in power enough to influence the Graf of Middenheim, under the shadow of Chaos encroaching on the Empire?
Ive been thinking of different play styles that could be used to create ‘one-off’ adventures. Where a team of players create ‘one use’ characters and play a more hack’n’slash style adventure, with no respect for tone but for instant satisfaction and glorious treasure! Changing the game mechanics to a certain degree sets up an opportunity to have some fun in the Warhammer world, in more of a Diablo 2 tradition than lets say The Odenhaller Contract, or Enemy Within.
- Create ‘one-off’ characters, not intended for long term gradual development.
- Perhaps double the XP earned throughout the scenario, if not more
- Award XP during the session on accomplishment of tasks, rather than between sessions or after the scenario.
- Bend the rules for learning skills, or taking careers, to allow for fast development and ‘levelling’ to occur during sessions.
- Random loot rolls in hero chests, including magical items.
- Have an idea of what enemies the players will face, however keep the freedom to be able to randomise the numbers based on the progress of players, or their new powers granted to them from magical artifacts.
-Random roll for the arrival of mini-bosses?
-Encumbrance doesn't matter
-Maybe change rules for healing or effect of healing spells?
-Maybe add mechanism for regenerating some MP for spellcasters.
-Balance all player advantages with and increasing level of challenge. They may have a kick-ass magic sword, but maybe a Basilisk or far worse lurks lower in the cavern?
Keep it simple. Its all about action and seeing if the players can survive the adventure to the final boss. Structure the scenarios in a way that gets the players into the action quickly. Quest based scenarios are often good, as the focus remains strong and there is a steady rising challenge as the players get closer to their goal. Some ideas...
-Searching for artifacts is always good. Good old Holy Grail quests give focus.
-Kidnaps and rescues are great. Rescue a foolish noble from Kislev Troll Country?
-The players start being captured by the enemy, in a fortress, far from home. Escape and bash their way out to freedom!
-You should have a ‘boss challenge’ that guards the final completion of the quest. It could be a creature, a puzzle or magic.
-Enemies taking over precious Imperial infrastructure - greenskins have made their way through a mountain pass, taking over the fort guarding the border into the Empire. Respond to the signals for help and take back the Castle!
-Geography will play a big role - getting out of the Empire, into the Badlands, even Darklands will provide endless swarms of greenskins - and worse - for the players to deal with.
-Keeping the action in tunnels and caves means you can easily add traps, fungus/spores, and the further you go underground the worse the fiends become.
I'm not implying these types of games should become the norm, just that sometimes breaking out in a hack n slash fest might be entertaining enough to re-energise your play. You never know, maybe one of these types of adventures take you out of the Empire to strange new lands and dangers, that you wouldn't have experimented with in a normal scenario.
Let me know your thoughts or reactions?