Looking for an encounter idea

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Whymme
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Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:18 pm

Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:22 am

My campaign is partly playing in the Realms of Dream, sort of like Lovecraft's Dreamlands, but now for WFRP. The setting is fleshed out as we go along.
Next session, this weekend, the party will be on the trail of a small military unit who has kidnapped an NPC. In order to enliven the chase, I'd like them to have an encounter - with someone who you would expect in a dreamland setting, but not in the 'real' WFRP world. Do you have suggestions for a fun encounter?

Also, how could a chase or pursuit be made interesting otherwise? I'd rather not resort to numerous 'follow trail' tests.
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totsuzenheni
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Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:53 am

There was a 'Sandman' ( Neil Gaiman ) story in which someone was caught up in the dream of a city, that is to say that a city as an entity was dreaming and someone was caught up in it.
Blackadder
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Tue Feb 12, 2019 5:44 am

It’s got to be Elric of Melniboné. Moorcock did a lot of dream realm stuff in the later books.
Knight of the Lady
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Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:28 am

I'd google pictures of "nightmare monster" and look at what you get as a source of inspiration. Or just google pictures of "fantasy monster" and you should get plenty of stuff to inspire you.

But if you'd like a more special suggestion, which of course isn't very usual to Dreamworld landscapes, I'd suggest a Wendigo-type of monster that eats dreamers entering the Dreamworld in non-acceptable ways, like in the flesh. A sort of guard dog of Morr if you so like, who ensures that, for example, the forces of Chaos don't intrude into the Dreamworld but this guy isn't very picky about what intruders are Chaos or not, it just eats them all to be safe.

Thus you can perhaps spin something out of its destruction as well if you want it to be special, or just one of many guardians Morr has, if you want to not have a prolonged aftermath to the fight.
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Hyarion
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Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:41 am

I really like KotL's Wendigo idea.

Perhaps you could have other dreamworld inhabitants who need to be helped or appeased to provide information on the group the party is tracking.
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Orin J.
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Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:43 pm

I'm not entirely sure how you're going about this, but you could try approaching the chase as a symbolic one, rather than a linear one- having them chase the man through scenes of his own mistakes, or deluded moments of greatness, with them always "catching" him only for him to stutter out that he couldn't recall them being here before the scene unravels and they can see him in the distance as the world blurs around them into some new place.

at the end of it they end up catching the kidnappers engaged in the man's nightmare of his own kidnapping, and fighting the nightmare soldiers off alongside the actual unit of kidnappers who abandon the whole thing as they just want this to end.
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hallucyon
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Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:37 pm

Whymme wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:22 am
I'd like them to have an encounter - with someone who you would expect in a dreamland setting, but not in the 'real' WFRP world. Do you have suggestions for a fun encounter?
How about having them join an irrealistic tea party with the Hatter, the Pflugzeit Hare and Sigmar of Reiksdorf who ruminate on the following:
a) which of the two tails the comet has is plaited,
b) what are eight ways to stir tea with Ghal-Maraz,
c) how did Empress Margritta manage to fool everybody for 400 years she was not undead?


(For c see "The Enemy Within", section: A Timeline for the Empire, p. 12. Interpret with a wink.)
Whymme
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Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:18 pm

Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:55 pm

Thanks for your ideas. I like them a lot.

Alas, I haven't read enough Moorcock, so don't know Elric of Melnibone. And my players don't know enough of the WFRP background, so we won't be dealing with Empress Magritta. I love the idea of the group barging in on an unbirthday party, though.
The monster ... I think that I'll skip. Other points in the session will influence fighting, so I'd like this one to be a non-combat one.
The idea of making the chase a symbolic one is one that I love as well, but unfortunately it doesn't fit with the current situation. But I'll keep it in mind; I'm quite sure that the PCs will visit the dreamlands again, and this could be an idea for another session.
Whymme
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:18 pm

Tue Apr 02, 2019 4:33 am

I had wanted to report back to you before, but never got to. So, a bit late, my report.

A tea party it was - the PCs stumbled upon it in the middle of an army camp, and apparently nobody else noticed the table or the strange people sitting there. The PCs could see everything around them in the camp, but nobody saw them.
There was a mad hatter, a young girl with blonde hair, and, instead of a March hare, a raven in an official-looking costume. The players thought that it was a personification of, or messenger of, Morr. I left that open; the aim of the tea party was most of all to get a bit of surrealism in the session.

The PCs were hoping for clear answers, but they mainly got a number of conundrums.

'So you are in a dream. Do you know whose dream that is?'
'You're here when you're dreaming, you say. That's funny - when I dream, I'm in Altdorf.'
And a trick I got from the Over the Edge RPG:
The raven asked a quick succession of questions like: What is your father's first name? How many brothers and sisters do you have, and what are their names? What was you favourite toy when you were a child? Where did you grow up?
And when players couldn't answer them all immediately, the raven saw that as proof that the PCs were not real persons, just figments of someone's imagination (which of course they are). And that got the discussion back to 'so you're n a dream, but whose dream are you in?'

It was fun, and a good intermezzo in the story.
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