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[IC] PbtA Ironsworn - PbP in Ancient Greece

doghead

thotd
The news that barbarians from Neo-Assyrian Empire have landed on the island is grim tidings. The Neo-Assyrian Empire has long cast covetous eyes at the polis colonies on the eastern shores of the Aegean Sea. Raiding is common. Occasionally wars have been fought, mostly won. The Neo-Assyrian Empire is vast, but fractious, lacking the unity and common purpose of the Greeks. They are, after all, barbarians.

But never before has the Neo-Assyrian Empire sent forces across the flashing blue waters to homeland of the Greeks. Armies are mustered by the polis. The long standing animosity between Alpha polis and Beta polis is put aside. Advanced forces are sent forth to hold key passes while the main armies are readied to march out and meet the enemy in the field.

Pallas

The forces of Gamma polis are the first to arrive at the pass and are tasked with ensuring the force of Beta polis are given time to be ready when the attack came.

The attack comes in the late hours hours of the afternoon. Niklos of Gamma polis sounds his war horn and the hoplites lock shields, slowly giving ground to draw the enemy into onto the spears of Beta phalanx. But when they reached the Beta phalanx they found not friendly shields, but the pointed end of spears attacking from the rear. The phalanx is a powerful, but unwieldy beast, unable to change direction easily. The fighting descended into chaos as realisation dawned that Gamma phalanx had been betrayed.

The pass was lost moment Beta phalanx had struck its treacherous blow from behind. It was up to the soldiers of Gamma phalanx to carry warning of the treachery to the others. Niklos rallies the surviving hoplites of Gamma phalanx to fight free of the Beta phalanx and get word to the army of Alpha polis. It is bloody going and in the end, there are few dozen remaining Gamma:hoplites, most too wounded to go much further. Niklos commands three of his hoplites, including Pallas, to find the Alpha polis army and warn them. With that Niklos rallies his tired and bloody hoplites to turn and stand, an buy Pallas and his companions as much time as he can.

Pallas and his two companions run on into the night ...

Penelope

It takes time to muster an army. But eventually the Alpha polis forces march forth. With them goes Penelope with the other healers. The army stops for the second night, the main force atop a low ridge, the supplies and healers a little ways back. After two days of hot dusty marching there is little for the healers to do. Blisters mostly, a couple of minor injuries among the animal handlers, a group of men who drank bad wine and are regretting it.

As the army settles in for the night a wounded, unconscious hoplite is brought to her on a stretcher. He has taken a blow to the head, and a nasty wound on his arm that looks like it was done by a wolf or dog. Penelope takes charge, cleaning and binding the wounds. The hoplite tosses and turns, muttering about monsters and betrayal. There is a nasty reek to the wound on his arm. Penelope prepares something to help the man sleep and fight the infection. A couple of officers come by to get answers, but Penelope has none, and the wounded hoplite cannot speak for himself. Penelope waves them away; they leave a few hoplites nearby to carry news when the wounded hoplite wakes.

After a few hours the wounded hoplite seems to sleep more easily. Penelope changes his bandages one last time before she heads off to sleep. Penelope is almost done packing away her gear when from out of the darkness nearby she hears a throttled cry of pain, followed by a bark, the sound of fighting. Around her, the few that remain awake turn to see what the noise is. The hoplite guards gather up shields and spears and peer into the darkness.

A figure crashes into a distant fire, sending up sparks. A javelin takes one of the hoplites guards in the chest. His companions hastily bring up shields, and start forwards as armed figures appear, rushing in from the darkness. The sounds of fighting increases. An animal howl fills the air.

The wounded hoplite sits bolt upright, gripping Penelope's arm.

First up, apologies for the delay in getting this up. I really should have begun this in a tavern ...

I suspect that the post will raise a whole bunch of questions. Use the OOC thread to ask them.

Please keep this thread for IC posts. Simple OOC questions and game mechanics can go in here, but each post in this thread should have some IC content.

Please don't use colours for speech. Use Bold if you want to highlight speech.
 

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TallIan

Explorer
Pallas started awake with the noise of a battle outside the tent. He looked around in confusion taking in his surroundings. A tent, stretchers, various herbs, a priestess. The recent past crashed over him. Beta had betrayed the polis to the barbarians. They would be marching even now to take as much as they could before the polis could muster the army.

He stood on shaky legs. "I have to get to Alpha. Beta has betrayed us and let the barbarians through the pass." He searched around for a hoplon. Unsurprisingly there were none in the tent. A scream from outside alerted him to the hoplites outside. Dashing out he grabbed the fallen man's hoplon, doru and Xiphos before taking stock of the situation.

The other guards were locked in a fight with a much larger force of beta hoplites - their betrayal continued - and he could tell from the fires that the main force of the alpha force was surrounded. Given that he was with the apothecary he could guess that the rear of the Alpha forces were covered as well.

Dashing back inside he placed a firm hand on the priestess, "Did I deliver the message? When I arrived did I say anything?"

OOC: Pallas
Health: 5/5
Spirit: 5/5
Supplies: 5/5
Momentum: 2
 

KahlessNestor

Explorer
Alpha Camp
Night

Penelope looked up, eyes wide with fear. Women weren’t normally allowed on the battlefield, but her position as a priestess of Apollo and her skill as a healer allowed her to force an exception. It was difficult work, and more than one drunken soldier had taken her for one of the camp followers. But her father, an old soldier, had taught her to defend herself, a knee to the groin often solved things.

But when the chaos of battle erupted inside the camp, far from the front lines, Penelope knew this was not a place she should be. Her sleeping patient sat up and gripped her arm. "I have to get to Alpha. Beta has betrayed us and let the barbarians through the pass," he yelled at her before rushing outside and grabbing weapons.

Penelope tried to protest. He was too weak. But he was gone. She packed up her things, and strapped on her own sword, grabbing her bow. “Try and get everyone who can move into the mountains!” she told the other healers.

Then the injured hoplite was back, grabbing her again. "Did I deliver the message? When I arrived did I say anything?" he demanded.

Penelope shook her head, her long, dark locks waving. “You were barely on your feet! You uttered only incoherent ramblings!” she insisted. “You still aren’t well! Come to the mountains with us!” she told him.

***
Health 5/5
Spirit 5/5
Supplies 5/5
Momentum 2
 

TallIan

Explorer
The priestess shook her head. “You were barely on your feet! You uttered only incoherent ramblings!” she insisted. “You still aren’t well! Come to the mountains with us!” she told him.

Pallas thought about it for a moment. The mountains certainly offered safety, but would not get the message to Alpha. Losing this advance force of Alpha warriors would not in itself be devastating, but keeping the logistical elements of the force would allow a small force to seek shelter in the mountains and harass the enemy supply lines. This kind of decision should really be discussed in a military assembly, but Pallas did not have that luxury.

"I cannot afford the time to get to the mountains." He said reluctantly. After a brief pause he touched the bronze of his shield, "But I will see those that I can safely out of the camp but then I - we -must get word to Alpha."

With that Pallas headed back out of the tent. "Alpha! To me!" He called trying to rally the scattered men and form a rear guard for the Priestess.

OOC:
Edit: To make the commitment to rescue less, and swear the vow properly.
Roll vs heart to sear a vow: 1D6 + 2 = [4]+2 = 6
1D10 = [6] = 6
1D10 = [5] = 5

weak hit: +1 Momentum. Pallas needs to gather a rear guard. On his own he won't achieve anything.
I think that aid an Ally here to cover Penelope leading the people away.
Aid an Ally: Aid ally with Iron: 1D6+3 = [3]+3 = 6
1D10 = [7] = 7
1D10 = [4] = 4
I forgot about loyalist on the roll, but it won't make a difference: weak hit - Penelope gain +1 Momentum; Pallas Gains +1 momentum


OOC: Pallas
Health: 5/5
Spirit: 5/5
Supplies: 5/5
Momentum: 4
 
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doghead

thotd
Supply Camp.
Night. Weak moonlight and scattered campfires.

The main body of the army camps atop a small rise, giving it a commanding position over the plain below. The support camp is located about half a mile behind, in among a lightly wooded area. Sentries have been posted around the support camp, but otherwise the majority of people there are non-combatants. Of course there are a few warrior there. There always is at night - sick and wounded receiving medical attention, chancers scrounging supplies, the lonely finding a little companionship, or the lazy just skiving off.

The light of the new moon is partially obscured by broken scudding clouds. The majority of campfires have burnt down as midnight approaches. The night is relatively dark. Through the darkness you glimpse half a dozen raiders moving through the camp, in pairs. They move through the camp with obvious intent, slashing and stabbing at people as they pass, but not stopping to fight. This is not a full on assault. There are too few, too lightly armed, and they move through the camp with a purpose other than just slaughter.

They are wrapped in dark cloth, and appear to be lightly armed with short spears and blades. Their features distorted by bestial dog like masks. The nearest pair pause. Their latest victim crawls way into the darkness, ignored. They sniff the air, turn, and look to you. Their eyes glint yellow in the firelight. A gesture with a spear. They charge towards you.

You have a half dozen heartbeats before they close.

OOC: Sorry. I wanted to get this up last night, but I ran out of time.

Withdrawing the supply camp personnel to the mountains would be an formidable task, and would take you away from the main army camp, if you want to go down that path. Protecting the wounded is an alternative, if you want to make a vow at this point.
 

TallIan

Explorer
OOC: i think I might go for the protecting the wounded, as I feel like the timing of Get a warning to Alpha doesn’t allow for too many distractions.

I’ll update the post to reflect that. And sort out the rolls for the vow.
 

KahlessNestor

Explorer
Alpha Camp
Night

“Go!” Penelope yelled to the other healers. “We will cover your retreat into the mountains!” She couldn’t leave the injured hoplite. He was her charge.

Penelope pulled an arrow from the quiver at her hip. She pressed her lips to the metal arrowhead, saying a prayer to Apollo as she vowed to protect the weak and injured.

Swear a Vow: 2D10 = [7, 8] = 15
1D6+3 = [6]+3 = 9


Strong Hit

***
Health 5/5
Spirit 5/5
Supplies 5/5
Momentum 3
 


doghead

thotd
Pallas throws his support behind Penelope, giving her courage for what she has to do. Then setting his spear, he prepare to receive the charge.

Penelope raises her bow and swears her vow to Apollo. Instantly she feels her thoughts clear. The way ahead is clear.

OK. I think that the following represents the current state of play. Let me know if you disagree.

Pallas

Secure Advantage (Aide Ally) Roll+Iron. Weak hit: +1 Momentum (Penelope). If in combat, both lose initiative (not in combat at this time).

Enter the Frey - Strong Hit. +2 Momentum (Pallas) Pallas has initiative.
(Note: should be Roll+Heart. Doesn't change anything at this point)
(Note: This could have been a Face Danger move as well. The difference, I think, seems to lie in whether is it essentially offensive or defensive.)
Raiders: Dangerous. 2 Harm. 2 progress/harm inflicted.
* Progress 0

* Next: Roll Strike [roll+ iron].

Penelope

Swear a Vow (Penelope) Strong Hit. +2 Momentum (Penelope). You are emboldened and it is clear what you must do next (Ask the Oracle if unsure).
Protect the weak an injured [Troublesome. 1 Progress/gain]
  • Progress 0.
  • What does that mean, "the way is clear"?
(Note: Oracle says Persevere and Burden. Whats does this mean? I think it means hold and protect the supplies first. Feel free to offer your own interpretation.)

  • Next: Enter the Frey (if you wish to attack with your bow). Roll+Heart.
  • Next: If you have the Initiative, Roll Strike. If you don't have the initiative, Roll Clash.

Summary

Pallas: +2 Momentum, Has initiative.
Penelope: +3 Momentum.
 

KahlessNestor

Explorer
Alpha Camp
Night

Penelope raised her bow to aid the injured hoplite, but one of the dog soldiers sliced at her with his spear. She just managed to get her bow there in time to parry it, but so great was the thrust that her bow snapped in half. She cursed, scrambling back.

Enter the Fray: 2D10 = [8, 10] = 18
1D6+3 = [4]+3 = 7

Pay the Price: 1D100 = [28] = 28

Weak hit
Pay the price: Something of value is lost or destroyed.
And that’s a good start...

***
Dangerous foe: 2 progress per harm; inflicts 2 harm

Health 5/5
Spirit 5/5
Supplies 5/5
Momentum 3
 

TallIan

Explorer
Not wanting to be outflanked by the charging enemies Pallas waited from his moment. Right as the lead attacker came into reach, Pallas stepped forward and thrust with his spear. Pallas took the attacker completely by surprise opening up a huge wound in its chest that would surely prove fatal.

Strike with Iron: 1D6+3 = [5]+3 = 8
1D10 = [1] = 1
1D10 = [3] = 3

Strong hit: +1 harm; retain initiative.
Dangerous Foe: 3 harm: 6 Progress

OOC: Pallas
Health: 5/5
Spirit: 5/5
Supplies: 5/5
Momentum: 5

That's 10 progress, so we can end the fight there, not sure how many enemies there actually are though. Or if you are tracking enemies with individual progress tracks. [/SBLOCK]
 
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KahlessNestor

Explorer
Alpha Camp
Night

Penelope shook her head. At least the hoplite was doing better. With no bow, she pulled out her xipha. She spun around, catching the blade across the throat of the soldier charging at her, sidestepping him as he fell, opening up a bit of space for her to put her back to the hoplite.

Clash: 2D10 = [3, 2] = 5
1D6+1 = [5]+1 = 6

Strong hit. 2 progress. (12/10); +1 momentum and initiative

***
Dangerous foe: 2 progress per harm; inflicts 2 harm

Health 5/5
Spirit 5/5
Supplies 5/5
Momentum 4
 

doghead

thotd
Pallas launches as blistering attack on one Raider. Meanwhile, Penelope swiftly counters with the arrow in her hand, turning the tables on the the other Raider.

Both Raiders are bleeding and wrong footed, their quarry has slipped from their grasp and snatched back the initiative.

First up, please box OOC comments or put them in Spoilers. Personnally, I like spoilers as they keep the IC thread looking sleek.

Second, cut and paste directly from the OOC thread (cos I should have put it here in the first place):

Nice save.

KN: To draw a weapon during a melee sounds like Face Danger (with speed, agility, or precision: Roll +edge).
That's ok, Penelope still has a arrow in hand, so she doesn't need to draw anything. She can use the arrow as a weapon to inflict 1 harm (vice 2 harm with a sword).

Which makes the progress track:

Raiders: Dangerous (2 progress per harm; inflicts 2 harm)
ProgressBar: 8/10.

Both Penelope and Pallas now have initiative.

  • Penelope (having scored a strong hit) can now seek to End the Fight
    i.e.: Roll two Challenge dice vs Progress (8).
    OR
  • Both Penelope and Pallas can seek to continue to attack (if you want to improve the ProgressBar).
 

KahlessNestor

Explorer
Alpha Camp
Night

Penelope scrambled for her sword to defend herself, driven back by the forceful charge of the raiders. She struck out, finishing the last of the raiders.

“How did they manage to get past the sentries?” Penelope asked, panting. “Are you injured?”


***
Dangerous foe: 2 progress per harm; inflicts 2 harm

Health 5/5
Spirit 5/5
Supplies 5/5
Momentum 4
 

doghead

thotd
The two raiders are dead. For the moment, you are out of immediate danger.

Their features are truly beast like; fur covered and dog like, including wicked sharp teeth. Limbs wrapped in black linen. Light armour. Bare legs ending in clawed paws.

For a moment, Pallas is transported back to the previous night [see below].

Around you you can see a few small groups of raiders. Sporadic fighting, screaming. Moving through the camp with intent. Moving through the camp in your direction.

The supply camp is slowing stumbling awake around you. People half dressed, people undressed. Some grabbing weapons, tools, clothes, bags. Teamsters dragging panicky animals towards carts. People shouting instruction. It's chaotic, but the process of moving is starting.

Pushing hard through the forest. Pale moon light. Inky black shadows. Hesperos and Phineas beside you. Snarling dark shapes erupting from the blackness. Fighting. Phineas born to the ground by two dark shapes. Screaming and bloody flesh being rent. The smell of wet animal and fetid breath. A set of jaws clamped around your spear arm, yellow eyes glinting at you. A spray of blood. Hesperus's pale face. Pushing you away. Begging you to run. You are the last one left! An odd tilt to his stance, a spear jutting from his leg. Staggering away into the forest.

The sounds of hacking, snarling and killing as Hesperus buys you time.

The only reference to the challenge rating of the vow is in post #5 above. Let me know if you think it should be something different.

Penelope has started them moving in the right direction. Lets call that we one milestone achieved, so 1 progress marked.

Vow: Get the people to the safety (Formidable: 1 progress/milestone)
Progress 1/10
 

KahlessNestor

Explorer
Alpha Camp
Night

“What are these things?” Penelope asked the hoplite. “I have never seen anything like them before.” She tugged him to come along with her as the camp started moving.

As they moved, Penelope looked around to try and find another bow she could use.

Would that be Resupply?

***
Vow: Get the people to safety (Progress 1/10)

Health 5/5
Spirit 5/5
Supplies 5/5
Momentum 4
 

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