April 5th, 2009

geekier than thou

Legend of Hero: 046-047

Finally got to sit down again on the players' side of the gaming table this weekend. We haven't played the campaign that generated the CSI: Luvine tales in a few months, but it was as fun as I remember it, and the Story Dice were rolling hot.

For example, at one point, we were undergoing a "Test of Body" to determine our right to take possession of a plot-critical magical artifact. Our first challenge was to have one of our characters outdrink a dwarf. So Simon the sorcerer, a crippled little shrimp of a man with a horrible constitution but an inexplicable love of hard liquor, sat down at the table. Three pints later, after ridiculously horrible rolls all around, the dwarf slumped over. Simon shrugged, finished his glass, and then collapsed too.

Shortly thereafter, we ended up facing off against a half-orc barbarian who said one of us had to defeat him in single combat. Our ranger, who has got some Issues with orcs, tried and failed twice, and then sulked in a corner while he waited for us to recover enough healing magic to get him back to full strength. Simon shrugged, stepped forward, won initiative, immediately dropped the foe with a Sleep spell, and beheaded the half-orc with his own greataxe before taking a single scratch.

Then we came across a barred grate we needed to bend open to proceed. I very nearly managed to singlehandedly complete the test-of-body trifecta with a STR 7 sorcerer, except that by group consensus, our ranger was told to take a shot first so that it could be even more epic when he failed and his scrawny shell of a brother succeeded. Jonas the ranger promptly rolled a 20 on his strength check and took the bars apart without blinking.

Meanwhile, back in Legend of Hero, David is trying to convince Kevin and Crissy to visit the Shadowlands with him. They're game, but in Crissy: Act V they discover an unexpected obstacle. Behind the scenes, Machinations: Act VI lets us listen in on the Shadow King's inner circle, all together for the first time. How come he's not immediately throwing the full weight of his overwhelming force against the heroes? If the answer seems hackneyed, give it a few weeks: you have to play the trope straight in order to deconstruct it, after all.