And it went very well I thought (would love your thought Galadrin on that)... attrition rate was about 50%. We started with 15 players at 0-level and by the end we had 8 1-level PC's left. Ran through a heavily modified version of Starless Sea and it was a hoot! Maybe it had something to do with using Lego minifigures as minis....
Overall, I'd say DCC RPG was a blast to read... and the transition from concept to play is really quite good. Can't wait for the next one.
The disaster that is my game table now... bloody bits everywhere.Summary by Galadrin
It was definitely a lot of fun. Keith did a great job customizing the module to keep us on our toes. Here's a play by play of the deaths:
After volunteering (being nominated? Or coerced?) to be the town's heroes, the gang of 15 throws a crazy, drunken party at the local tavern to celebrate the impending mission against the evil forces arrayed against the helpless village. We talk strategy and elect our leader (naturally, the alcoholic street urchin named "Scruffy" is our first pick for leadership).
The next day, we groggily head off to the looming antediluvian fortress, most of our bravery now replaced with pounding hangovers and fatalistic surrender. Upon our approach to the keep, the narrow lane takes us by a bushy plant that one of my characters (Elf the Elf, who was raised by wolves) detects the scent of fresh blood on. Fearless Scruffy investigates, and is immediately strangled by thorny vines that shoot out from the malevolent flora. Soon, everyone is whomping away at the bush with their clubs and cutting it with their scissors, until we get the clever idea to simply torch the evil shrubbery. John's character, a lumberjack (named Ian?) throws his bundle of kindling on the blaze, causing the vines to retreat into the forest (but not before one character's head is popped off, and a Halfling is flung over the cliff side). Sadly, Scruffy is dragged kicking and screaming deep into the forest by the burning shrub. Demoralized, we stand their in awkward silence, unwilling to risk our lives to rescue him!
At the gatehouse, John coaxes his pet pig to spring a trap (creating two half-pigs) and we are beset by mutants from the crenellation. We force our way into the keep, ascend the castle walls and deal with them in short order without casualty. Snooping around the keep awakens a massive, blue ogrish thing, who stupidly chases after the last peasant to land an arrow in him (giving us enough time to anchor him with a grappling hook and shoot him in head with an abandoned ballista we had found in the courtyard). Sadly, the creature punctured our beekeeper with his spikey tree trunk weapon, and she remained dangling from this until the beast was dead.
Free to explore again, we fitted ourselves with a cache of weapons and armour found in the courtyard and moved on to the ancient temple opposite the gatehouse. In the church we found a dying priest (good-aligned, ironically... we patiently waiting for him to expire before looting him), sacrilegious texts (magic scrolls) and a glass vial. When our snooping unleashed a black gelatinous cube, six characters fled to a secret elevator and left the other five to rot. The cube went after one of my characters (Dirty Pete, the merchant), backed him into a corner and began lapping at him hungrily with its appendages (while Dirty Pete huddled there weeping).
Just as the other characters fled outside, they were confronted by a new band of mutants. With nowhere else to flee, they ran to an abandoned house and barricaded themselves in. The majority of the mutants instinctively ran into the church and, bypassing the cube, ran to the elevator to take pot shots at us as we descended into the darkness. They were met, however, by returning concentrated crossbow fire that fell their archers and sent them reeling. Meanwhile, Dirty Pete gained a sudden will to live and scrambled up the rope to the church steeple, thus rescuing himself from imminent digestion. At the abandoned house, the betrayed members of the party quickly dispatched the one mutant left in the courtyard and ran to the church, barricading it from the outside and trapping the mutants alone with the ravenous cube.
Dirty Pete scuttled out a tower window and climbed down (spending nearly all his luck to avoid falling to his death) and rejoined the rest of the party to descend a second entrance into the lower dungeons. Thus rejoined (geographically, if not by friendship), the party of eleven rescued some imprisoned peasants, did some impromptu field surgery on Elf the Elf (who was stuck with fleshboring leeches) and gained their first level. One of John's characters decided to honour the fallen priest and chose to become a Cleric of his deity (the four winds, a la Conan), while the rest scatter themselves amongst the other classes. We discover tapestries speaking of an unholy sacrifice that must be made (however, only Elf the Elf was able to read the mural, and as he was translating aloud with his back turned, the rest of the party was unanimously agreeing exactly which character to sacrifice).
Descending lower with newfound power and purpose, we come across the Starless Sea. Elf the Elf is instructed to go to the front of the boat (to... uh... keep a look out!) and is pushed overboard at the first sign of trouble on the black ocean. The rest of the characters hammer at his fingers gripping the side of the boat as the poor, feral Elf screams "Whhhyy!?" So saved by his noble sacrifice, the heroes arrive at the shores of a small island, where they find a hideous ritual perpetrated by the mutants upon chained townsfolk. We spring into action, but not before a villainous, black armored demon rises from the sacrificial fires. We fight valiantly, but soon we are down many of our number and it becomes clear that we are heavily outmatched. Dirty Pete (now a thief), takes a dram of the black water in his magical vile, swigs the swill and begins waving his arms and babbling incantations to the ocean. In return for his troubles, the great sea beast that devoured poor Elf the Elf returns, bats Dirty Pete across the beach (reducing him to 1 hit point) and pulls the demon to pieces before sinking the island into the ebony depths.
The resulting waves washed our heroes out to sea. Sometime later, we found ourselves, confused and battered, stranded on familiar beaches, not far from our old village.
I was impressed how streamlined and simple the game is. The only worry I had was that there was a lot of page flipping, especially via a vis spell effects. I think we will need to print these out for long term play, in order to keep everything moving during the game.