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Hack For More

WEEK 32: 11/16/04

by Edward McEneely
Nov 30,2004


Hack For More

WEEK 32: 11/16/04

Week 31 was one of those "concept" sessions that never go as well as I hope. I'd planned for a sort of weird adventure involving Badger Falls, the guardian thereof (a ginormous badger, of course), some Orcs, and Erich's family. The idea was that there'd be the potential for actual role-playing if the players wanted to take it, a big finale fight scene involving an irate mammal, a chance to work out what an Orcish cavalry troop looks like (here's a hint: lots of spare ponies, due to their unfortunate predilection for eating their mounts), and hopefully would be easy to prepare and fun to run.

Unfortunately, time ran short and I was forced to prepare much of the adventure on the train, which meant that I didn't really have time to map out the town or plan any of the encounters and had to work it all up in my head.

As you might imagine, that can have an adverse effect on an adventure.

At any rate, the players made their journey back home, stopping only to buy an enormous bison (for Erich, who'd bought a new sourcebook; he never shares them with me, I might add.) and a brace of goats for Seth, along with a packload of gear of various descriptions. Thus fortified, they headed off to Badger Falls, the mayor of which was Erich's father. (I'm pretty sure that last sentence did some tortous things to the English language, but it's 1:00 AM as I write this, so it'll just have to soldier on.)

Erich's character (named, if I recall correctly, "Grey"), is half-Elven, but his father was was his mother. Seth and Laura's characters quickly put two-and-two together and began making sniping comments, but Erich stayed manfully in character and remained totally oblivious to the fact that the Mayor refused to call Erich "son", or acknowledge him as such. I got to play the mom as sort of a boozy Livia type (and if you don't know who she was, go read I, Claudius. Right this instant.), and a little fun was had as the PCs interacted with NPCs that couldn't be conveniently slaughtered.

Interaction is always a little difficult in a game like Hackmaster, where PCs are typically murder-optimized, but I'll give my players credit; they generally stay in-character and are able to roleplay with the best of them, in emergencies. Of course, there's not much call for it in my games. Like a Hollywood suspense film, intrigue can never stand up to square-jawed types butchering the conspirators. Huzzay!

At any rate, Erich soon re-encountered his nemesis, half-Orcish Underleader Sak-Lar ("Sak-Lar! We went to school together!"), covered in the blood of his ostensible father. Immediately rushing to the Mayor's side, Erich received the +1 Longsword of Badger Falls in a touching goodbye where his character's father called him a miserable bastard and disowned him and Erich let it go right over his, firmly convinced it was all metaphor.

Then, it was off to battle with the Orcs now rampaging through the streets of the town. The party made short work of ten mounted Orcs, but they were feeling a little battered when they saw fifty more Orcs arriving.

Help was on the way, however, in the form of the Dire Badger, the guardian of the city. Emerging from its lair, the immense and extremely irate mammal swatted Orcs about like flies as Erich used his wand's final charge to reduce most of the remaining Orcs to ashes before he charged into close combat with Sak-Lar, beheading him with one lucky hit.

The session ended with the party being appointed Badger Falls' ambassadors to Fangaerie proper, a quick-and-dirty way for the townsfolk to get rid of them.

They left with only the faintest sense of forboding at the reach of an enemy who could sneak sixty Orcs and their equipment this deep into human-controlled territory, and not even the barest clue of what kind of powers they were interfering with...

Hey A Good Quote List What A Concept:

Seth: Why the fuck did I ask?

Laura: Would you be interested in joining Parents and Friends of Half-Elves and Fairies?
Erich: PFHAG?

Ed: That's right. Scathing political satire from Hack for More...

Seth: Your father thinks I like boys.
Erich: But you do like boys...
Seth: No. I hate them; almost as much as I hate women.

Ed: Isn't "Ach mien lever" what you say when your crowbar is broken?

Ed (as Seth's Character): My protege named "Excellent Son Number One."

Ed: There's like "Fallout 2" level of damage to him.

Seth: You are a very strange and dissipated woman.
Ed: So are you.

Seth: Where is orc pigs?
Ed: Do you have any beef?

Ed: Women seem wicked...
Laura: When you're unwanted...
Erich: Faces look ugly...
Seth: When you're a duck.

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