the wonder of role-playing games: reviews, solo rpgs, old-school & narrative games

19 Nov 2012

Actual Play: Wu# With the 9Qs: Qs 1-3

This is part 2 of my actual play write-up of my solo play in a Wuxia-World. Read more about it in part 1.

Q 1. What looming hostility inherent within the setting unexpectedly comes into conflict with the heroic motivation, threatening to worsen over time?

Be the GM first:
Random Idea Generator: frog + shelter
Encounter: an enemy pursues new goals + an enemy takes aggressive action against the heroes The PCs are stationed at a hidden camp in the Middle Province to train new wushu. Both of them have arrived quite recently. They know each other from sparring sessions but haven’t been together on a mission yet.
It is a hot and humid summer day. The novice ninja are outside on the training grounds when they hear a loud grumbling sound. Suddenly a wave of huge frogs crashes into some of the students’ sheds. WTF!? Be the players next:
While some of the fellow students still are confused, Hikari gathers her wits and begins to attack the frog monsters.
“I shall show them some of my ink.” (Hikari vs. Monster Frogs combat - difficulty rating: 1 / result: success) Hikari defeats her share of monster frogs using her clan’s wushu and combat styles.
Ninja wunderkind Genzen joins the fight (Genzen vs. Monster frogs combat - diff rating: 1 / result: failure by 3). He suffers a nasty flesh wound (negative aspect). It’s not easy to live up one’s name! Genzen barely manages to destroy the frogs but in the end he is victorious. Be the GM first:
The camp is reduced to rubber. Obviously, the frogs were the result of some powerful wushu. Camp leader Chuushin Genpo has his suspicions about the culprits. And of course, someone needs to inform the Lotus Coalition…

Q 2. What overtly troubling event remotely tied to the results of Question 1 occurs, confirming that something seriously adverse to the heroic motivation is afoot?

Be the GM first:
*Random Idea Generator:*cult + dragonfly
Encounter: pursuit + combat Chuushin Genpo tasks our young heroes with finding the Cult Of the Dragonfly, a group of rogue Recoiling Serpents ninjas. “They may be behind all this. I want you to find them and to find out if they are responsible.”
The PCs are properly equipped and given a map and a Lotus Coalition permit. They have to travel to Lake Higan’s northern shores.
After several exhausting days of marching the two ninja rest at a glade. Genzen takes first watch. 1 hour later he hears some suspicious noise… Be the players next: While Genzen is still trying determine if there is a real danger or if it’s just some wildlife roaming around the first arrows flies. Genzen can easily dodge them.
“Kaizen-chan, wake up!” he screams.
Several ninja are coming after them. Kaizen Hikari, still sleepy and an all-thumbs-kind-of-girl, gets immediately surrounded and captivated. An enemy holds a dagger to her throat. (aspect compel)
Saving the girl without getting harmed himself is a hard challenge (diff rating 3). Fortunately a big owl is sweeping over the head of the captivator, thus distracting him. (PC spends a Fate token.) Being a knight in shining armor Genzen immediately rushes the enemy (diff rating 2) and knocks him over. Hikari manages to escape. Genzen is in ground combat with the other ninja, suffers a black eye but knocks the foe out.
The PCs finally manage to wound some enemies mortally. The assault team decides to retreat and vanishes into the woods.
“Let’s see.” Hikari examines the unconscious enemy ninja and discovers a dragonfly tattoo on his wrist. The two PCs decide to wake him up and to interrogate him. They want to know about the cult’s hideout and their plans. (Hikari using living lie detector aspect for a test vs diff rating 1). Be the GM first:
After some threatening the enemy describes the way to their hideout which is heavily guarded. It won’t be easy to break in. There are dozens of cultists so a head-on approach probably won’t work.
The cultists are convinced that the Lotus Coalition is feeding them lies. The Wardens Of Equilibrium, the Coalition’s leaders, have contrived a devious plan to lull all the other ninja clans in false safety with their talk about an alliance and a mutual enemy. Behind the scenes the Chuushin Clan are plotting to rat out all the other clans to the Izou Empire. The ninja doesn’t know anything about the ambush on the PC’s camp or the monster frogs.

Q 3. What elements of the results of Questions 1 and 2 suddenly get twisted in a surprising manner, increasing the danger to the heroic motivation?

Be the GM first:
Random Idea Generator: wave + crown
Encounter: revelation + combat The two novice ninjas leave the rogue ninja behind, properly tied up of course. Arriving at the shores of Lake Higan they scout for the cultists’ base of operations and spot some strange looking warriors. They have bluish skin and are wearing scale armor. They are wearing an emblem: a crown surrounded by a wave. The strange warriors are accompanied by a cultist ninja. They seem to be allied.
Both PCs never have seen such warriors. While they still debate about this turn of events they spot a straggler. That’s a chance to engage! Be the players next:
Genzen decides to place an invisible wushu thread on the lone warrior so that they can track the way to the camp. Be the GM first:
The ninjas now know the exact path to the cultists’ camp. Now, all what’s left is to infiltrate the camp.

Next, Qs 4-6…

All the links:
F# by R. Hunter Gogh
WuXing by Eloy Lasanta
the 9Qs by John Fiore