WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

darksoul
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WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by darksoul » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:36 am

I'm posting this because this session made me laugh more than I expected & there is some interesting notes about running an AFF game here. If you just want to read the analysis read the 2nd half.

This session still makes me laugh when I think about it. Right from the start the players discovered how poor they were LOL! I let them choose a surrounding village to start in and told them they could buy supplies but everything was to expensive for them, even provisions!
Along with that the premades in WOFTM start with 2 provisions. When I told them the Mountain was 2 days away the comments were "OMG we're going to starve to death on the way to the Mountain" because you need to eat 2 meals a day to prevent stamina loss. I let them start at the Mountain with 2 provisions to help them but the game became about beating the module and making sure they had enough food.
Everything became about food. "Can we eat the orcs?" "do the orc's have provisions?" "The Orc's are eating rat gizzard soup? We need to get that soup!" Eventually one of the players realized "OMG, we can't even leave Firetop Mountain. We don't have enough food to get back to the villages!" I laughed hard at this realization. When one of the players was going to toss his lantern oil the human immediately jumped in "No, no, no, don't do that. I'm going to need that stuff" because he know he only had 2 hours of light source LOL! Omg, I tried to stop laughing but I couldn't.


Ok, so here's the more serious analysis:
1. Poor & starved players have motivation and drive to move forward. This not something I had expected when I was reading the module to prep it. They are very focused on making sure they can survive starvation. This is only an issue for the first 2 meals of the day and on travel.

2. Time is a powerful factor here. I am tracking their time in the mountain. It has taken their characters 1 hour and 10 minutes to beat act 1. The next day is a long ways away. Food won't help if they've had 2 meals and continue onward. The priest has used 1 healing spell and he can't use it again till next day unless he uses a LUCK point. It's possible they will use up most of their resources. Taking a nights rest is a long ways away.

3. Combat can be very dangerous if your stuck in a place. I've scored 2 crits on the players so far. None of them have a potion of Skill & they need a week to heal that. They're not going anywhere.

4. Magical equipment will mitigate this loss right now, but it will not let the PC's become better. Getting a sword that adds +1 to attack strength only helps
mitigate the skill loss. If the players had not lost a skill point they would actually be stronger.

5. The benefits of an item that gives +1 skill vs +1 attack roll becomes very apparent now. I can't remember if there are any items that give +1 skill but a +1 skill item lets you heal skill loss and makes all physical skills better, a +1 attack roll item only helps in combat.

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Dawndeath
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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Dawndeath » Wed Aug 21, 2019 11:38 am

That is hysterical. :lol: I guess if the party are desperate enough, eating orcs is an option. I don't think they're poisonous, but I'm pretty sure they don't taste very nice (as Smeagol would confirm). Maybe the viability of eating orc (and other forms of Titanic life) could be the subject of an article for the fanzine. :P

On a more serious note, when it comes to starting characters, I'm inclined to play it a bit loose with the bookkeeping of food. I quite like the idea of Heroes starting off poor, so I'm inclined to assume they have enough food to not starve, and then to build into the first adventure or its aftermath the means for the characters to acquire the sustenance they need. In WoFTM, Act 1 Scene 7 (Rat-gizzard Soup) is set in the orc barracks kitchen. In addition to the aforementioned soup, I stock the kitchen with a number of other foodstuffs that the Heroes can take - enough to see them through the rest of the adventure and back to civilisation. It's orc food, so of course it's disgusting, but that's the reality of an adventurer's life (as it were).

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Ruffnut V2 » Wed Aug 21, 2019 9:24 pm

Looking back I'm honestly surprised at least one of my players haven't tried that yet
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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by LordArioch » Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:15 am

"Can we eat the orcs?"
A Cookbook of Titan is undoubtedly in the works.

:lol:

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Dawndeath » Fri Aug 23, 2019 6:01 am

LordArioch wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:15 am
A Cookbook of Titan is undoubtedly in the works.
Well, we've already got the herbs we need in the Titan Herbal. :lol:

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by LordArioch » Fri Aug 23, 2019 7:25 am

Dawndeath wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 6:01 am
LordArioch wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:15 am
A Cookbook of Titan is undoubtedly in the works.
Well, we've already got the herbs we need in the Titan Herbal. :lol:
Now, that's one spicy orc meatball! :shock:

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Nuvole! » Sun Aug 25, 2019 1:23 pm

I participated to the original play testing for this adventure and my impression is that this is not for starting characters, but for adventurers with quite some experience, that can afford good weapons and armour, beyond good food.
Of course, the more characters you have the better, for the outnumbering rule, unless you increase the number of opponents accordingly, but to take your weapons against a well-known villain you should be a respected adventurer and not a guy that just put down the pitchfork to look for treasures, in my humble opinion. That kind of novice adventurer profile, as far as I can understand it, is more suitable for the Caverns of the Snow Witch, where the adventurer find the way to fight face to face the Snow Witch more by chance than by choice.
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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Dawndeath » Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:26 pm

That's a good point. It's worth remembering that in most of the FF gamebooks you are assumed to be an already fairly well-established adventurer. Transporting adventures from gamebook to AFF adventure, the difficulties either need to be toned down to make them suitable for beginning characters, or those adventures should be reserved for the more experienced Heroes. I think that latter option often (though not always) makes more sense from a story point of view too, especially when the quest involves going up against a big bad like Oldoran Zagor.

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Nuvole! » Mon Aug 26, 2019 4:18 am

Some gamebooks are exlicitly more geared towards relatively novice adventurers, like the Snow Witch and the Island of the Undead, so it maes sense that the Director that wants to convert classic gamebooks to AFF adventures creates a suitable sequence of adventures.
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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Dawndeath » Mon Aug 26, 2019 2:16 pm

Yes, if we wanted, it would be possible to create a fairly neat progression of adventures - from novice to experienced and powerful Heroes - from the already published range of FF gamebooks. I would really love to see that happen. We already have WoFTM and the Sorcery! campaign; and there are D20 versions of Warlock of Firetop Mountain, Forest of Doom, Caverns of the Snow Witch and Deathtrap Dungeon, and (I believe) a fan-created AFF version of Deathtrap Dungeon, too. I am sincerely hoping for more conversions of the classics.

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Nuvole! » Mon Aug 26, 2019 3:56 pm

Dawndeath wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 2:16 pm
and (I believe) a fan-created AFF version of Deathtrap Dungeon, too.
You believe correctly: I run that about 30 times on various platforms! ;)
No joke.
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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by darksoul » Tue Aug 27, 2019 5:15 am

Dawndeath wrote:
Wed Aug 21, 2019 11:38 am
That is hysterical. :lol: I guess if the party are desperate enough, eating orcs is an option. I don't think they're poisonous, but I'm pretty sure they don't taste very nice (as Smeagol would confirm). Maybe the viability of eating orc (and other forms of Titanic life) could be the subject of an article for the fanzine. :P
LordArioch wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:15 am
"Can we eat the orcs?"
A Cookbook of Titan is undoubtedly in the works.

:lol:
Dawndeath wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 6:01 am
LordArioch wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:15 am
A Cookbook of Titan is undoubtedly in the works.
Well, we've already got the herbs we need in the Titan Herbal. :lol:
LordArioch wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 7:25 am
Dawndeath wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 6:01 am
LordArioch wrote:
Fri Aug 23, 2019 4:15 am
A Cookbook of Titan is undoubtedly in the works.
Well, we've already got the herbs we need in the Titan Herbal. :lol:
Now, that's one spicy orc meatball! :shock:
Lol!

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by darksoul » Tue Aug 27, 2019 6:07 am

This is an interesting discussion.
Nuvole! wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 1:23 pm
I participated to the original play testing for this adventure and my impression is that this is not for starting characters, but for adventurers with quite some experienc...he adventurer find the way to fight face to face the Snow Witch more by chance than by choice.
Dawndeath wrote:
Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:26 pm
That's a good point. It's worth remembering that in most of th...ption often (though not always) makes more sense from a story point of view too, especially when the quest involves going up against a big bad like Oldoran Zagor.
Nuvole! wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 4:18 am
Some gamebooks are exlicitly more geared towards relatively novice adventurers, like the Snow Witch and the Island of the Undead, so it maes sense that the Director that wants to convert classic gamebooks to AFF adventures creates a suitable sequence of adventures.
Dawndeath wrote:
Mon Aug 26, 2019 2:16 pm
Yes, if we wanted, it would be possible to create a fairly neat progression of adventures - from novice to experienced and powerful Heroes - from the already published range of FF gamebooks. I would really love to see that happen. We already have WoFTM and the Sorcery! campaign; and there are D20 versions of Warlock of Firetop Mountain, Forest of Doom, Caverns of the Snow Witch and Deathtrap Dungeon, and (I believe) a fan-created AFF version of Deathtrap Dungeon, too. I am sincerely hoping for more conversions of the classics.
Here's why I find this discussion interesting.Most Fighting Fantasy books were meant to be playable and beaten with either minimal or no combat. WOFTM is supposed to be one of those books.Your comment about the adventure needing advanced heroes seems to go against that notion. Thing is, knowing what I know now from the module, I'm not sure it's possible to beat the module with no combat and because of that I'm not sure it's possible to beat the game book with no combat since they are similar but it's supposed to be possible.

Also, most gamebooks said you were an experienced adventurer, but what does that mean? In every book you randomly rolled stats and you never started with better equipment. An experienced adventure had 7-12 skill only. The biggest difference is the amount of Stamina you have in the module compared to the gamebooks. I'm not sure agree in regards to the type of adventurer you should be. The one book that stands out the most in this regard is "Chasms of Malice" which specifically states that you are a cook in the castle and are forced to fight Orghuz and the malice. Despite being a cook your stats could have been anything since it was randomly rolled. That book does have something that is different from a lot of other books that the author didn't add as much in later books...a lot of death scenes. You could be killed in 1 strike combat or by a wrong decision, even by a wrong turn. I started to think that the books was intentionally designed that way because your character was a cook.

Also, there's 3 more things that made the books different from the modules.
1)You could eat more than 2 provisions a day in the gamebooks and gain stamina, but not the module.
2) you can't turn back and go a different direction in the gamebooks. You were forced to go onward.
3) The books were meant to be re-playable and assumed you wouldn't win on the first try.
4)You can have magic in books that didn't allow it.

These(especially #3) are pretty big considerations when convertiong a book to a module.

I'm a little tired but wanted to write this, I'm hoping it reads properly and that my thoughts are clearly understood. If I messed up my notions somewhere and call me on it. I'll comeback after and fix it.

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Dawndeath » Tue Aug 27, 2019 6:29 am

darksoul wrote:
Tue Aug 27, 2019 6:07 am
I'm a little tired but wanted to write this, I'm hoping it reads properly and that my thoughts are clearly understood. If I messed up my notions somewhere and call me on it. I'll comeback after and fix it.
No worries darksoul, that all made sense.

I think you may well be right about the number of death scenes in Chasms of Malice. I'm interested to go back and re-read Fighting Fantazine issues to see if there is an interview with the author (they have quite a few author interviews), and whether he comments on it at all.

Although some of the gamebooks may have given an indication in the storyline about whether your Hero was novice or experienced, I think the bigger tell has to be simply the difficulty of each gamebook. Some gamebook adventures were just more dangerous than others. If they are to be translated somewhat faithfully into AFF adventures, those books will naturally become adventures for experienced Heroes. My gut instinct is to concentrate first on translating the adventure from gamebook to AFF, and then judge what level of characters it's aimed at.

Which brings me to another question which has been on my mind for some time, but I'm going to start a new thread for that.

And yes, this IS an interesting discussion. :mrgreen:

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Re: WOFTM session. Fun stuff an Analysis.

Post by Nuvole! » Tue Aug 27, 2019 9:41 am

darksoul wrote:
Tue Aug 27, 2019 6:07 am
Most Fighting Fantasy books were meant to be playable and beaten with either minimal or no combat. WOFTM is supposed to be one of those books.
Where did you find this statement? It doesn't match my experience with FF gamebooks and, in general, it would be strange calling "Fighting Fantasy" a series meant to be playable without fighting.
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