Monday, December 1, 2014

Top 5 Oldhammer Scenarios - Rank 5

Scenarios are the life blood of gaming sessions. What are the best oldhammer scenarios out there? 
Everybody will have a different opinion about this - what makes a good oldhammer scenario?

For me, the most important element is the mood and the setting. I like my scenarios dark, gritty and twisted. Also important is the element of horror. Creepy, frightening and with a sloooow build up. Not necessarily supernatural horror. I personally prefer the mundane, man made horror. The dark spots of society, lunatics, insanity and pure injustice. Speaking of the supernatural - low to no magic. The problem with magic is that all odds are off. With magic everything is possible and it becomes hard to reason and to apply logic. I don’t mind a brutal hack and slash, but generally I prefer investigative plots. If combat, then fast, brutal, threatening and hurting. Another oldhammer staple we shouldn’t forget is a good dose of black humor and lots of puns. Also, a cornerstone is the underdog theme. No glorious dragon riding elves. No, rat catcher, tomb robber, beggar and thieves wading through sewers and worth. Your death could be meaningless and early.

Does that sound about right? So, we got: darkness, horror, investigation, low magic, deadly combat, no-heroes and black humor. Again, this is my personal list. What do you think?

All right, on with it. To beginn with, I only picked from official first edition scenarios - no campaigns - that I either GMed or played. Let’s start at the bottom. 

Rank 5 - With a little help of my friends

A fun, investigative heist game. The players get contacted by a gnome investigator - Alphonse Hercules de Gascoigne to help rescue a kidnapped child. 

The two greatest things about the scenario are for sure Alphonse with his outrageous Belgian accent and the heist theme. Alphonse is a fantastic character and obviously inspired by a famous Belgian detective. You can have lot’s of fun with that. He gets my oldhammer vote! 

The heist is as good as you make it. Impatient players might just storm the kidnappers house, but that misses the mark. Intense planning, sneaking and a rescue mission in best ‘Oceans Eleven’ tradition will guarantee a couple of intense and fun nights. 

On the downside, the adventure setting is a bit generic. It could be any city in any roleplaying world. One or two warhammer details would have been nice. To be fair, the kidnappers are Estalian, which is quite warhammer for sure.

The fun of the scenario depends heavily on what the players come up with. There is barely any railroading - which is great, but probably tough for first time GMs. Alphonse can be used to help stuck players without much hand waving. A neat trick. 

Overall, a great little scenario. To be found in WD 104/Warhammer Companion. Run it - liked it.

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