Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

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hawaiianbrian
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Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby hawaiianbrian » Wed Nov 27, 2019 12:35 pm

The thread for Fires of Ra seemed pretty successful, so here's a thread where we can discuss Revenge of the Carredon. If you spot any errors or discrepancies, need some clarification, or just want to weigh in on it, I'll be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Fuzzy
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Re: Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby Fuzzy » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:34 am

So... it's interesting that this thread has no replies. I might hypothesize it's partly because the adventure has few glaring issues.

We're 3 acts in, going on 4... so far, it's played quite well. It doesn't feel forced, and there is enough choice in how to proceed about the adventure (both across acts and within acts) that it feels more like a quest than a railroad. In that, I would call it a significant improvement over the LL and NL adventures.

FWIW, we finished the LL adventure (after much groaning). We abandoned the NL adventure after 2 acts. It just stopped being fun, and I can't exactly say why. Maybe it didn't feel purposeful - more like just a random set of stuff being thrown at the players just to keep the players constantly busy and showcase all the cool stuff in NL. We will probably go back and carve out pieces for use later. So far, the Aysle adventure doesn't feel long even though it is in fact quite long.

fougerec
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Re: Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby fougerec » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:46 am

We found the LL one very raid-road like so when it came to the Fires of Ra I was more careful in how i presented things so that while the PCs still went from point "A" to "B" to "C" there was the illusion that it was due to their choices. Was really just a matter of how I presented things, when I built up the drama and what options they presented to me to react to.

mathey
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Re: Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby mathey » Fri Dec 06, 2019 9:30 am

I haven't tried Revenge yet, but I do think a common issue with the mega-adventures is keeping momentum going. I manage to get a Torg session in once every two weeks or so, but even at a pace of two a month, that means 7 Acts of mayhem and Glory can be a looOng time in RL time. Even if I'm not taking my time and pushing forward, that usually works out to around 10-14 sessions of deeds to do, or about 5-7 months with the group sticking to a particular cosm.

I want to repeat that we had a ton of fun with Fires of Ra, and I recommend it highly to people looking for ways to handle a wide range of Nile Empire escapades - but getting that much of a single cosm for a sustained time at full-tilt can get to be an exhausting grind.

I recommend looking at each mega-adventure as either A) A deep dive campaign into a single cosm or B) A set of episodes to divvy up between Delphi Missions or (better yet) your own creations. As with any published adventures for RPGs, you really want to get in there with an editing tool and custom -fit them to your group and your own interests as a GM.

There's some suggestions on how to break things up in the adventures thus far, usually with the first two or three acts being in sequence and the latter half being a bit more piecemeal if you want to insert different adventures in other cosms. This can get to be a little confusing for players, however, as the "throughline" or main objectives and power players of a given mega-adventure can be forgotten, leading to a less serialized and more episodic feel. That's not necessarily a BAD thing, mind you; sometimes "cosm of the week" jaunts can be fun ways to approach campaigns.

But - if you want to maintain a sense of continuity and character development between your acts and adventures, stopping in the middle of an epic, desperate quest to suddenly travel to a very different part of the world on an entirely unrelated task can make things seem less intentional and more random. Its kinda what happened with my own campaign, which I've subsequently rebooted. I think I would have been better served to put in some more downtime for people to settle into the setting(s) and tie their personal goals and histories into the subsequent adventures.

I posit that a cleverer and better GM than myself could even find a way to weave two or more mega-adventures together in a way that they sustain attention and intention, but I haven't dared to try it yet. It'd likely involve both personalizing things for your Storm Knights and finding commonalities in the themes and characters who compose the published adventures and their linking scenes.

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Greymarch2000
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Re: Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby Greymarch2000 » Fri Dec 06, 2019 9:51 am

My group did Revenge of the Carredon a while back, but they were slightly over-leveled for it so it would be unfair to complain about power levels or anything like that. That said I was struck by the Acts that I thought were going to be the best ones (corsairs and London underbelly) ended up being my players least favourite ones.

When much of the action relies on NPCs using skills to keep a ship going and during combat the rest of them kinda twiddled their thumbs (aside from the elven mage flying around and fireballing enemy sails - involving adjudicating called shots on sails on the fly) the rest of the players kinda felt that there were just "along for the ride".

The elven section was enjoyed due to having an elven PC who was very into the "elven rebels" being mentioned in a single sentence in the Aysle book and kind of went off assuming that's exactly what this was so I kinda altered it slightly but yeah it went over well. The Mage Slayer attack almost TPK'd them since they'd been relying on OP spellcasting up till then, it was a nice reminder.

The dwarven section in Aysle was cool, the whole attack on the fortress was derailed when the cyberpriest sniped the evil dwarf from like a kilometer away with a laser - killing him in one shot, netting a Glory in the process and becoming a Hero to the dwarves. Grom was somewhat sidelined as a threat by a Mistaken Identity card but my players all thought it was cool.

I suppose the biggest issue we had (and seems to be a theme in these mega-adventures) is after being a few acts in the players looking around and saying "Why are we doing this again?". Tolwyn is an important lore character true, but to players with no previous Torg experience she's just another NPC and this was seeming like a LOT to go through and the importance was questionable, even having Oona fangirl over Tolwyn only helped so much. It's less of an issue in Fires of Ra but still happens.

I had the players vote on which order to take things on and they actually chose to do it in the exact order they were listed in the book. So I guess that worked out heh.

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hawaiianbrian
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Re: Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby hawaiianbrian » Sat Dec 07, 2019 2:16 pm

Fuzzy wrote:So... it's interesting that this thread has no replies. I might hypothesize it's partly because the adventure has few glaring issues.


Can you share those issues? I'm always interested in how others perceive and use our adventures, and I'm always seeking to improve my writing.

Fuzzy wrote:Maybe it didn't feel purposeful - more like just a random set of stuff being thrown at the players just to keep the players constantly busy and showcase all the cool stuff in NL. We will probably go back and carve out pieces for use later. So far, the Aysle adventure doesn't feel long even though it is in fact quite long.


The Fires of Ra discussion thread has some great suggestions for breaking it into pieces. If people have ideas for doing that with Revenge of the Carredon, they should share them here!

Here's my suggestion: Use acts 1 & 7 for sure. They're the essential "bookends" that set up the adventure and then pay it off. Then choose only those acts from the middle material that interest your or seem like they'd mesh well with your group's tastes. For any acts that get cut, just say Wyrwind already has those ingredients.

Alternatively, pare down the acts so they're only about 3 scenes apiece. If the bit with the elf/human conflict in Act 3 seems like a sidebar, go directly from scene 1 to scene 4. If the delve in Act 4 seems long, skip the first couple of fights and get them right to scene 3. If you aren't interested in dealing with a big sea battle in Act 5, have Fortunato anchored in the Gemstones instead. And so on. Then your group would get the "whole" adventure, but on a tighter timeframe.

Anything that gets cut can be repurposed later as a one-shot not connected to the original adventure, with just a little bit of work.

Just FWIW, our intent when writing these single-realm mega-adventures is to create a "deep dive" (as Mathey said) where the SKs essentially "tour" the realm while pursuing one main goal. The obvious risks are that the players will get oversaturated in a single reality, and that they'll lose track of the plot or lose momentum. Even the God Box's five acts can be too long for many groups to stay in one realm. We're trying to mix things up a bit... For example, in Unhallowed Data, we toned down the high action for more investigation-oriented scenes (though there are still some good battles!), and one act takes place in an Aysle mixed zone that is evocative of Shadowrun. We'll also try to toss in more elements from other realms just to keep things fresh.

As always, I love hearing the feedback and playthrough experiences!

johntfs
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Re: Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby johntfs » Sat Dec 07, 2019 4:01 pm

Greymarch2000 wrote:My group did Revenge of the Carredon a while back, but they were slightly over-leveled for it so it would be unfair to complain about power levels or anything like that. That said I was struck by the Acts that I thought were going to be the best ones (corsairs and London underbelly) ended up being my players least favourite ones.

I suppose the biggest issue we had (and seems to be a theme in these mega-adventures) is after being a few acts in the players looking around and saying "Why are we doing this again?". Tolwyn is an important lore character true, but to players with no previous Torg experience she's just another NPC and this was seeming like a LOT to go through and the importance was questionable, even having Oona fangirl over Tolwyn only helped so much. It's less of an issue in Fires of Ra but still happens.


You're not doing it for Tolwyn. You're doing it because if you don't do it, the Carredan is going to come back and eventually eat you all for Uthorian.

I did notice a couple of issues with the module. First, on page 17, the page numbers and Acts are scrambled a bit.

The Scroll and Jinny Greenteeth are Act Three, which begins on page 34. The Acorn/Viking adventure begins in Act II on page 20.

Fuzzy
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Re: Revenge of the Carredon Discussions and Questions

Postby Fuzzy » Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:48 pm

So we're almost through this adventure, and I've actually been more impressed the further we get. We're taking the acts out of order (if there is any order). I've been asking myself what makes the difference between this and the prior two single cosm mega adventures. I think I might have an answer...

It's a multi-chromatic cast of NPCs... And maybe that's more about Aysle than about the adventure. The key thing in Aysle is that there are a lot of neutral players. Even the 'vikings' fit that mold, and that creates opportunity to negotiate, partner, banter, etc. It also creates an opportunity for unexpected outcomes that can change things beyond the scope of the adventure itself (like when one player pulled Courtly romance AND a Romance card during the northmen 'thing' and then gloried multiple persuasion rolls). So the adventure feels less like a setup of problems that the players solve in linear order, and more like an open world.

I say this because it might help think through content in some of the other cosms. Looking ahead, I am somewhat concerned that the Cyberpapacy is more mono-culture than Aysle (and more like Living Land in some ways), though I'm hopeful based on some of the hinted content. But actually, if I'm right that the real driver of the difference in the adventure is the presence of multiple neutral or self-interested factions, then I suspect some of the most interest cosm books and adventures will actually end up being Tharkold and Pan Pacifica...

In any case, credit where it is due - thank you for the fun!


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