Saturday, April 26, 2008

Dark Heresy session 1

(these first few entries are based on my memories of something that happened a few months ago! NOTE: I begin by going through the story for the session in some detail, and then reflect on the session )


This session began with all the characters meeting each other, having each undertaken inquisitorial training for several intensive and harrowing months. They were summoned to meet their Inquisitor at his headquarters, and after a stony reception from the front desk, made their way to him, where he introduced himself and told them of their first task.

A simple enough matter- meet an old friend up in orbit, then escort him down to the planet, along with the valuable item he happened to be carrying. A trip to the spaceport, and an emptying of stomachs from space travel later, and they were at the ship, meeting Lexographer Ralt, who, in a rather brash manner, told them they had interrupted his dinner, and he'd just go back and eat it if that was alright?

Considering he walked away without asking, and the ships captain had confined the party to their boarding vessel, it might as well have been. At this point, something went wrong, and Ralt returned to announce the presence of an eversor assasin on board. In panic the party wished to escape, but, of course, Ralt had left the item of immense value on board.

So the party went to recover it (discovering an intriguing black case...), discovering the bodies of the crew along the way, and headed back to their ship... where they found the assasin and the body of Ralt. The assasin appeared to be frozen in time from a stasis grenade (one of which the party had), but the ship was no longer functonal. They would need to commandeer the vessel to escape.

A voice ran out over the intercom- the captain announcing that he had called for help, but they would take a while to arrive. The party explored forwards, heading down a ladder when the way up was blocked.

Exploration of the bottom level revealed a hidden door, which led to a store room full of illict goods. Stepping in, however, an intimidating security voice asked for a password, which the party could not provide. After some warning, two chainsaw wielding servitors appeared, looking incredibly intimidating.

The party retreated, and explored the rest of the level, discovering the large hanger where the more legitimate goods were held, and a surface lander stored within it. The landers door was locked, and they could not work out how to get it open.

Heading back, they decided to chance the storage room, sending the assasin,Cain,to grab something fast and get out again, hoping to steal something good away before they were cut in two by the servitors.

Sadly.... this didn't go too well. While Cain managed to grab a nifty looking grenade, he was almost sliced in two by the servitor, flying back against a wall and falling unconsious. A frantic combat emerged, with the servitors defeated by sheer weight of numbers and some suprisingly inept actions from the deadly robots.

However, this noise appeared to have attracted the assasin. Taking positions for an ambush, Nicodemus readied the grenade dropped by Cain. Not having a chance to examine it, he took a chance and threw it as the assasin came leaping through the door. The assasin, perhaps wrong footed by the sudden assault, failed to dodge despite his unnatural reflexes, and the grenade exploded, tearing a whole in the very fabric of reality, and dragging the assasin with it.

Unfortunately, because they had no idea what was coming out of the grenade, the party was wrong footed by this, and almost dragged into the warp with it! By the bearest skin of their teeth they managed to avoid it, although they almost got pulled into space in the hole left afterwards.....

With the assasin dealt with, the party was able to search the rest of the ship, and call for rescue, which came swiflty. The captain had died, the door to his cabin torn off, indeed the only surviving member of crew was the ships chef, who had hidden in the kitchen, cowering holding only a cleaver for protection.


I was quite pleased with this session. It was my first time being a gm since I was about 14, and it went reasonably. The plot hung together well, being a linear railroad as it was. While the plot is a little railroady throughout this campaign, I'm fairly happy with it being that way- it enables me to tell a story more easily, and is also just much easier to deal with. The next campaign I run I will endevaour to make a little more free flowing, but this is fine.

There were some interesting points- the players headed downstairs immediately, as they were supposed to, but they could have explored the current level more- doing so would have discovered the chef, who would have told them about the hidden room, and given them a good idea of the password for them, as well as inform them of the location of the codes (the captains cabin).

Still, the main problem was that the party became convinced they would never be able to climb up again- the way up was sealed by the captain, but they did not put two and two together when there was a loud explosion from above- the assasin breaking through the seal. This meant they decided to fight the servitors. This was fine, but I possibly could have made it more clear there were more options.

I also regret throwing the assasin at them when I did- it would have been more fun to have let them hear it moving about... but not appear. However, they did have the grenade at this point, which was more than enough to defeat it. Of course they might have had time to examine it and not almost kill all of them!

My ability to fail to hit any of the party worked in the favour, including the assasin failing to dodge the grenade! I had intended for the assasin to just escape, but then the party would have to fight to push it in. Impressively I managed to roll a 96, with a chance of success of about 85%!

While this session was a little severe, I had no real problems with it, as it was the first, and I had always intended to make it a bit nasty.

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