Saturday, March 26, 2011

Fallout dungeon stocking

There are many valuable artifacts of the Pre-War times still to be found for the intrepid scavenger. While the secrets of many advanced technologies, such as plasma weaponry, controlled flight and, as is rumoured, even nuclear fusion have been rediscovered by certain factions in the wasteland, occasionally even rarer objects are found: prototype weapons, top secret military equipment, relics of old wars and even more exotic items from beyond the stars. Needless to say these are highly sought after by every faction in the wasteland, and uncovering one of them can be both a blessing as well as a curse for its finder...

Here are some ideas for special loot to be found in your Fallout post apocalyptical dungeon.

Chinese remains: At the time of the Great War, the US and the People’s Republic of China were locked in an all-out war. Thanks to Power Armor technology, the US had managed to drive the Chinese out of Alaska and were taking the fight to them on Chinese soil. This didn’t mean that the American mainland was safe however, as saboteurs, spies, infiltrators and fifth-columnists continued to wreak havoc on a smaller scale. Even in 2249, sometimes relics of this war can be found in the wasteland.

Shansei C96 Chinese Pistol: The standard sidearm for Chinese militia members, the Shansei C96 is a very durable pistol, though less powerful than the standard American 10mm Pistol with which it shares the same ammunition type. Can sometimes be found in the wasteland as it was often issued to spies and fifth-columnists.
Range: 10/20/40 - Damage: 2d6-1 - RoF: 1 - Weight: 2 lbs - Shots: 7 (10mm) - Min. Str: / - Notes: Semi auto

Xuanlong Assault Rifle: Produced for the People's Liberation Army by Norinco, this Chinese Assault Rifle is a reliable, lightweight but effective variation on a basic assault rifle. However it uses NATO 5.56mm rounds, which have become quite scarce in the Post-War American wasteland
Range: 24/48/96 - Damage: 2d8+1 - RoF: 3 - Weight: 8 lbs - Shots: 24 (5.56mm) - Min. Str: d6 - Notes: Selective Fire

Chinese Officer's Shocksword: Chinese army officers carried with them a Zhanmadao sword as a sign of their authority. This particular sword has been modified to deal electrical damage, as can be seen from the blue current running up the blade, which can be turned on or off with a small switch on the insulated handle. A Small Energy Cell can be placed in the hilt.
Damage: St+d6+2 - Weight: 8 lbs - Min. Str: d6 - Notes: AP2, 2 hands, Runs on SEC

Hei Gui Stealth Armor: While the US developed Power Armor to gain an edge in the Sino-American war, the Chinese focused their efforts on stealth technology. The result was the Hei Gui Stealth Armor, a suit made of advanced polymers which actively cloaks the wearer, but offers only limited combat protection. Used by Black Ghost infiltrators on sabotage missions, it is vastly superior to Robco's derivative Stealth Boy units and functions without a built-in power source.
Amor: +1 - Weight: 15 lbs - Notes: Invisibility on wearer

Exotechnology: Some say mankind isn’t alone in the universe. Scavenger myths tell of mysterious crash sites and high security facilities from which never-before-seen technologies were recovered, and even more absurd stories are jokingly told about “flying saucers“ which abduct people and Brahmin....

Alien Shock Baton: This small melee weapon looks like a baton ending in an electromagnetic coil at the top. It deals an unpleasant electric shock to organic targets when hit. A small alien crystal in the handle seems to be its limitless power supply.
Damage: St+d4+2 - Weight: 2 lbs - Min. Str: / - Notes: Blunt

Alien Blaster: This highly advanced metallic alien pistol is a prime example of the superiority of the aliens’ technology. Lightweight and simple to use, this handgun packs as strong a punch as a Gatling Laser. A chamber on the side of the blaster allows for the fast reloading of Alien Power Cells.
Range: 12/24/48 - Damage: 4d6 - RoF: 1 - Weight 2 lbs - Shots: 10 - Notes: AP4, Snapfire, Disintegrates Target, Runs on Alien Power Cells

Modified Alien Blaster: This prototype Alien Blaster has been modified to run on Small Energy Cells, presumably by military scientists, though it seems the design alterations have left the functionality of the gun impaired.
Range: 12/24/48 - Damage: 3d6 - RoF: 1 - Weight 4 lbs - Shots: 10 - Min. Str: / - Notes: AP2, Snapfire, Disintegrates Target, Runs on SEC

Alien Disintegrator: This energy rifle can be found on the security crews of alien space ships. It lacks the high accuracy of the smaller Alien Blaster, though this heavy weapon is more powerful than any known human weapon. It has a slow rate of fire, but is extremely durable and energy efficient, allowing 20 shots to be fired per Power Cell.
Range: 10/20/40 - Damage: 4d8+2 - RoF: 1 - Weight 6 lbs - Shots: 20 - Min. Str: / - Notes: AP5, Snapfire, Disintegrates Target, Runs on Alien Power Cells

Alien Drone Cannon: The Drone Cannon is the removed arm cannon of an alien Guardian Drone, often found on alien motherships as security bots. It fires bouncing balls of energy which explode after a small amount of time. Difficult to aim precisely without the processing power of a Drone’s targeting system, this heavy weapon can be extremely devastating when used against multiple targets.
Range: 12/24/48 - Damage: 4d8+4 - RoF: 1 - Weight 40 lbs - Shots: 1 - Min. Str: d10 - Notes: AP6, Snapfire, -2 to Heavy Weapons roll, Runs on Alien Power Cells, Med Burst Template

Alien Cryo Grenade/Mine: These explosives use alien cryonic technology to encapsulate targets in an ephemeral cryostasis field upon detonation.
Range: 5/10/20 (Grenade) - Damage: / - Weight 2 lbs - Notes: Combined Entangle and Stun power in Med Burst Template for 3 rounds

Alien Inertia Suppression Field Generator: These devices act as personal force field shields, used by alien crews in hazardous environments. The Suppression Field gives of a slight glow and distorts the light around the wearer. The easily portable Generator runs on a small alien crystal, guaranteeing a near limitless power supply.
+1 Toughness on wearer

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Session 7 summary

This session we welcomed a new player and the group thought of a brand new get-rich-quick scheme, this time involving the bounty of roach eggs and corpses they procured once they emerged from a long, messy fight, where it was proven that sometimes your allies can be your worst enemies! Also one of the longest fights so far, taking up most of the session, against Radroaches at that!


- Craig: Good natured Super Mutant shaman and skilled hunter, self-proclaimed seer of spirits;

- Hannibal: Big and menacing wasteland doctor, with a slightly disturbing smile and eagerness with the scalpel;

- Paul: Rough-and-tumble wastelander, muscle-for-hire by trade and protector of the weak at heart;

- Rhiannon: Vault 21 outcast, expert in all things mechanical and technological, planning to liberate her Vault;

After having discovered and explored the subterranean caves underneath the mountain of refuse earlier that day, the party emerged from the waste yard tunnels in the warm sunlight of late afternoon, a welcome reprieve after the cold and darkness of the caverns. Around this time Dexx, Paul and Rhiannon started to experience an unpleasant, gut-clenching nausea, an aftereffect of the elevated doses of radiation they had ran up; Craig however didn't seem to be affected in the slightest. Seeing that they still had a few hours before sundown and despite these first signs of radiation poisoning, the party made up their mind to retrace their steps and further explore some of the tunnels they had navigated earlier. Down to a single torch, Craig used the opportunity to demonstrate his survival skills once again. He managed to fabricate a makeshift torch out of some rags and fat from a Pig Rat, showing that in the wasteland you really can't let any part of an animal go to waste.

The group turned around and went back down the tunnel, opting to stay on the upper levels of the tunnels in case a quick withdrawal would become necessary. Further east they went, exploring several side tunnels they passed by before, until they came to a narrow passageway, where they had to continue in single file. Dexx, holding the torch, took point, while Paul brought up the rear. After following the tunnel for a few minutes, it eventually gave out on a large dug out room, continuing beyond the range of the torchlight. Immediately the group noticed similar piles of refuse as they had found in the previous Radroach nest, and here also they saw some creatures scurrying about, hiding from the light. Curious if the roaches perhaps had gathered something valuable in their nest, they decided to rummage through the trash, well knowing it was likely to anger the bugs. At that same moment Paul, still at the back in the tunnel, heard the sound of footsteps, approaching in their direction. Readying his knife he waited in the dark, and soon enough saw the light of a lamp coming down the tunnel. Though a brawny, hardened wastelander himself, the figure steadily drawing nearer gave him pause: a large, broad hulk of a man, a wicked grin on his face and also clutching a knife in his hand - not the sort of person one would want to run into in a dark tunnel. The man, seemingly friendly enough, introduced himself as Hannibal, a travelling physician of sorts and expressed his interest in obtaining a few specimens of the local wildlife. Always interested in a helping hand (and the opportunity to take his possessions should this stranger get killed by the Radroaches), the heroes welcomed the admittedly odd fellow to the group.

Craig then entered the room proper, using his spear to poke around in the nests the roaches had made and lure them to him, which they did soon enough after noticing the intruders disturbing their brood. Four of them skittered towards, but Craig was prepared, taking most of the little pests out in one powerful attack. The noise of the roaches attracted more of their kind however, and a small intrusion descended on them from the dark corners of the room. A frantic battle ensued, the bugs making for difficult targets to hit due to their small size and with their numerical superiority often proved dangerous. Soon enough a few of them got the jump on Dexx, who was knocked out cold as he hit the floor with these creatures on top of him. Rhiannon made use of the torch to try and scare the creatures off. Meanwhile Paul, armed for the task with the sledgehammer they found earlier, and Hannibal fought of some stragglers, while Craig was being threatened to get swarmed by half a dozen of the roaches. The heroes managed to dispatch most of them quickly, but then in an instant their luck seemed to change. Hannibal, frantically trying to stab one of the roaches, lost his footing and missed the creature completely, instead giving Rhiannon, who was standing next to him, a nasty cut with his knife. At the same time the ever unlucky Paul, trying to crush one of the roaches with a blow from the sledgehammer, swung way too high and hit Craig square in the jaw instead. Caught off guard, the Super Mutant was dazed and before he could react, another wild swing from Paul hit him with a sickening crunch in the gut, breaking a few ribs and knocking the wind out of the Mutant, who fell unconscious to the ground. Fortunately at this time only a few roaches remained or the tide of the battle might have turned unfavorably for the group. Tired and battered, eventually the ones left standing killed the last of the roaches and set to helping their fallen comrades. Their new ally, the only one to emerge from the fight unscathed, immediately proved to be a godsend, having on him an ample quantity of medical supplies and showing himself to be an expert physician. Dexx’ wounds turned out to be mostly superficial and he soon enough regained consciousness; some painkillers and skillful bandaging helped Craig back on his feet as well.

Rummaging through the refuse they found only meagre rewards, a small sum of caps and some parts which still looked usable. At the far side of the room however they discovered a narrow tunnel leading off into the dark, just large enough for a person to crawl through. Being the thinnest and most agile of the group, Dexx got the dubious honor of being sent in. After a few minutes he returned, stating he found a shaft leading straight down into another room. Tying a rope around him, Craig lowered Dexx down into this room. The space seemed to be a large hollow in the trash mountain and in it he found the wreck of several ancient cars and even a school bus. Reporting his discovery, all the others except Craig joined him to do a thorough search of the wreckage, in the hopes of finding some intact valuables. Rhiannon, being a skilled mechanic, noticed that part of the bus’ car battery was still in working order and salvageable, while Paul found a well stocked First Aid Kit, complete with some healing chems, in one of the car’s glove compartment. With their spoils the group decided to head back, before the hour grew too late.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bennies II

Last session I for the first time got to use bottlecaps for bennies and they were generally well received by the players: they're just the right weight, don't roll all over the table and are thematically a great match. I got the coca cola caps off of ebay (88 for €1). Inspired by the Sunset Sarsaparilla star bottlecaps from Fallout: New Vegas I added a pair of "lucky star" bottlecaps.

 At the start of the session everyone gets to draw his or her amount of bennies from a bag and has a chance to get one of these. When a player uses this specific benny, they get a bonus to the (re)roll. He/she rolls 1d20 to see just how lucky they are:
1: No luck, no bonus
2-15: +1 bonus to the roll
16-19: +2 bonus to the roll
20: Automatic success, "best outcome" unless the roll comes up as snake eyes. Up to the GM what the effect of a 20 exactly is, but the basic idea of it is that whatever the character was trying to do will succeed in the coolest possible fashion. ;)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Session 6 summary

Glad to say we managed to get enough people together this week to get a game going! The heroes decided to venture into the waste yard tunnels of Landfill, making for their first actual scavenging adventure, which proved quite successful in the end!

PS: I won't be updating for a while as I'm leaving on a trip, see you in two weeks!

Session 6:


- Craig the spirit hunter: Good natured Super Mutant shaman, wanderer of the desert and gambler with spirits of the underworld;

- Dexx: Young but experienced thief from the streets of the Boneyard, aspiring scavenger who likes to drive a hard bargain;

- Paul: Rough-and-tumble wastelander, muscle-for-hire by trade and ever eager to get in a good fight;

Earlier that morning the party had paid a visit to the office of Harlan Clint, proprietor of the waste yard and strongman of Landfill, and had learned from him that, in all likelihood, it would be another week before the next caravan headed west would pass by the shantytown. Not very keen on the idea of trekking through the desert on their own, our heroes found themselves stranded in Landfill with little money for atleast a week. Looking for a way to raise some additional funds quickly, Dexx, Paul and Rhiannon [whose player was not present this session] decided to try their luck and head out into the network of tunnels that lie beneath the trash mountains of the sprawling waste yard. Their fellow traveller Florian, moved by the plight of the destitute denizens of Landfill, forwent their invitiation, deciding instead to make the most of his medical education and help the poor in the streets.
As they parted ways, the party suddenly heard quite a hubbub, with several guards and some townsfolk running toward the outskirts of the town, soon followed by the sound of gunshots. Curious themselves what all the commotion was about, they inquired with one of the guards what was happening and were told that a lone mutant had showed up near the town. They then followed the other onlookers and once there saw, perhaps not entirely to their surprise, a familiar figure standing in the distance. Though well out of range of the pot shots the guards were taking with their rifles, Dexx and Rhiannon unmistakably recognized by his tall stature and long flowing cloak of furs, their friend and erstwhile companion, the Super Mutant Craig. Dexx immediately intervened, telling the guards to hold their fire. As vouching for the Mutant's good behavior alone didn't seem to convince the guards, he proceeded to walk up to the Mutant, together with Rhiannon, who was very pleased to see Craig again. A brief reunion took place. Dexx was still a bit vexed by Craig's sudden disappearance days before, which left the group to its own devices, which in turn may have led to the death of the tribesman Pyal. Craig's story about his vision quest in the desert, dealing with the spirits of the underworld in a dangerous gamble to safeguard the souls of his friends, did little to sway Dexx. Though Rhiannon partially shared his disapproval, she was first and foremost relieved to see the Mutant again.

Together the three of them walked back towards the town and Paul who had cautiously waited with the guards as he was not yet acquainted with the Craig,. Due to the lack of spectacle the crowd had meanwhile already dispersed. After a quick breakfast Craig was brought up to speed on the plans the party had made, and as some extra muscle could always come in handy, the Mutant agreed to join them in their exploration of the waste yard tunnels. Before heading out they first made a stop at the supply store near the entrance to the yard, a small run-down shack, unimaginatively named Joe's Supplies. Joe, a grizzled old man and the eponymous owner of the store, gave the group some free advice with their purchases, telling them to heed the lower levels as all manner of nasty creatures made their home there, and to be sure to return to the surface before nightfall. In the shop the party's penury became once again painfully obvious, as Paul hadn't managed to put any money aside from his previous ranching job, and Craig's hermitic lifestyle did little in the way of bringing in caps either. Realizing with just the tiniest amount of alarm that scavenging the tunnels might actually require physical labor, Dexx bought some prospecting supplies, in the hopes that they'd pay off. After finishing up their business with Joe, the group returned to the compound, where the main entrance gate to the trash mountains was located. A small queue of prospectors had formed in the meantime. They were passed by several times by some shabbily dressed men, who were admitted to the yard without paying the entrance fee. When it was their turn Dexx learned from the guard at the entrance, who was busy writing down the names of those entering the yard in a leather bound ledger, that many of the prospectors worked on a contract for Harlan Clint, getting free admission but having to surrender all their findings in return for a small finder's fee.
Once past the gate, the group followed the prospectors ahead of them, along a pathway cleared through the more recent garbage which the inhabitants of Landfill dumped there. Continuing down the path they came to the first of the three mountains of refuse, easily several hundred yards high. Most of the prospectors could be seen going straight ahead in what looked like the main entrance tunnel. The party however followed a few other men, which went round the side of the mountain until they reached an entrance located in the back. Yet a third entrance, in the western flank, could now be seen, which the party after some deliberation eventually went into.

A pungent smell wafted out of the entrance, overpowering Paul to the point of retching, his churning stomach a constant distraction while they descended deeper down into the tunnel. The party held tightly to the principle of always taking the same direction as to not get lost, which, despite the warnings of Joe and several prospectors, meant always taking the most downward route. After rooting in vain through some piles of trash, littered about a recently excavated room, and running into some other prospectors, the group came across a small oblong room, which had become a nesting ground for an intrusion of Radroaches. The creatures initially skittered away, disturbed by the harsh light of Paul's lamp and he kept them at bay, the bugs lingering at the edge of the light. When Paul subsequently disturbed one of the trash piles, the roaches became enraged and in an effort to protect their spawn, braved the light to jump the trespassers. Some of them managed to catch the party off guard, latching on to a leg or grabbing on to their chest, but were quickly thrown off before they could inflict any real damage. Craig combined killing and culinary prowess, impaling a grand total of four roaches on his spear, making for a nutritious wasteland shish kebab. The roaches managed to dodge quite a few of the swings and thrusts directed at them, but one by one Dexx, Paul and Rhiannon managed to plant their knives in the creatures. After the remainder of the bugs had been dispatched, rummaging through the piles of refused netted them a handful of caps, some spare parts and various egg cases, a few of which Craig took along.
The party kept following the tunnel, always choosing an offshoot if it sloped down even more. Coming to a large, oddly shaped room, their way was barred by various rusted, but razorsharp, torn sheets of metal and girders, jutting out of the walls and ceiling and sticking out of the floor, making traversing the enclosed area quite risky. Limber Dexx and even the bulky Craig managed quite well, but Paul and Rhiannon took a few missteps while navigating around the obstacles, fortunately only getting some minor cuts to show for it. Our heroes proceeded further east and down, eventually reaching a corridor which showed signs of recent excavation. At the end of the tunnel they found some tools lying around and what looked like a smooth, metal box lodged in the wall, only partially dug out. Craig used the newly acquired pickaxe to try and break open the box, which, despite his superhuman strength, didn't prove as easy as he had hoped. Just when the group managed to perforate the metal casing,  approaching voices could be heard. Two scavengers came down the tunnel and were quite surprised to find the party prospecting their claim, as well as using their tools. A discussion ensued. Ultimately the party resolved matters peacefully, returning the equipment and taking their leave, being pointed towards the lower tunnels by the prospectors. They followed the men's directions until they reached a steeply sloping tunnel, descending into darkness.

They climbed down and found themselves in a series of low, narrow tunnels, partially caved in at places. Unlike the wider tunnels above, which were propped up with girders or wooden beams, these tunnels didn't seem to have any supports at all, the compacted trash the only thing keeping the tunnels from collapsing. Continuing down the tunnel they eventually came to a junction, where a single Radroach scurried about. When Paul, carrying the lamp, stepped closer to the scare the bug away, in a sudden flash it disappeared; caught and dragged down into the ground by some unknown creature. The group tried to lure the creature out of its hole again, using one of the dead roaches Craig packed, but as the unseen menace didn't put in a new appearance, the group moved on, down another tunnel. Even further downward they went, Paul taking point and paying close attention to the ground, to avoid any other holes these creatures might have left behind. Too late he noticed the danger came not from below but from the side, as another of these creatures suddenly burst through the wall of the tunnel and latched itself onto Paul, throwing him back against the other side. Luckily Dexx had stayed alert, and he quickly managed to bury his knive between the Pig Rat's shoulder blades before it could inflict more damage. One dinner richer, the group cautiously proceeded. After following the path even further as it twisted deeper and deeper down the bowels of the mountain, they reached in the end what seemed to be the mouth of a limestone cave, lying forgotten below the mountain of trash. In crevices and niches on either side of the cavernous walls they noticed well preserved barrels bearing nuclear hazmat signs, which registered on Rhiannon's PipBoy as well above safe radiation levels. Despite this the party pressed on, emerging into a much larger cave, where they found many more of these barrels, stacked in great heaps almost reaching the ceiling.
Slowly they explored the cave, sticking to the walls whenever possible, the other side of the cavern beyond the small reach of the light of their lamp. At one point a broken barrel had spilled a faintly luminescent green sludge all over the floor of the cave, which posed an obstacle for all but Craig, who played Super Mutant ferryman and carried the others over the spill. Safely across, the group was about to go deeper into a cavern branching off to the east, when suddenly they heard a shuffling, dragging sound, slowly but steadily approaching. Exercising maximum caution, they backed away till they had their backs to the wall. The sound drew nearer, suddenly picked up pace and in the flickering lamplight they could see for an instant a horrible, mutant creature, dragging itself forward on legs resembling human arms, its body covered with tumorous growths from which two heads protruded, one beastly, snarling, the other almost humanlike, but no sign of intelligence could be seen in its dead eyes. Craig remained unfazed by the creature; Dexx and Rhiannon mustered up the courage to stand their ground, but the sight of the ghastly monster proved too much for Paul, who ran as fast as his legs could carry him. The creature lunged forward, savagely attacking Dexx and Rhiannon, but the threesome managed to fight off the Centaur even without their companion. There was no time to feel complacent however, as the cries of more of the creatures could be heard. They braced themselves as two more of the creatures appeared, one attacking Paul, who -having regained his composure- jumped in front of Dexx and Rhiannon, the other going for Craig. Out of the Centaur's mouth slimy tendrils extruded, and with a gurgling sound it started spitting acid globules at Craig. A frenzied fight ensued. Dexx managed to distract one of the creatures, which bought Craig some time to sneak up on it, driving his spear deep down in the creature's twisted torso, killing it with one fierce strike. After further attacks back and forth our heroes emerged victoriously, a third Centaur who tried to sneak up on them suffering the same fate as its predecessors. Having made sure no more of the mutants were around, they proceeded to explore the rest of the cave, coming across more of the hazardous toxic spills and more winding tunnels. After an unexpected, but futile, attack by a particularly stealthy mutant the group found the remains of a small camp site in one of the cavelets branching off from the larger cavern. Around an improvised fire pit the bodies of two long dead Super Mutants were slumped, which the party eagerly looted for a fine selection of military-grade hardware and a holotape, which detailed the journey of the Mutants.
Running low on lamp oil and nightfall drawing closer, they decided to head for the surface again, concealing the valuables they found, lest they draw any unwanted attention.