Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Tyrnador, Secrets of Tyland [GMS EYES ONLY]

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Tyrnador, Secrets of Tyland [GMS EYES ONLY]

    Tyrnador is an OSR style combination hex-crawl and plot point campaign in 3 books by Gramel Books. It's not for inexperienced GMs as it entails some 650 pages, and the Secrets of Tyland campaign is a vast web of people, places, items, and events whose connections are far from clear at times.

    I am currently running it with my group and I thought it might be nice to have a central thread for those GMs trying to troubleshoot the unavoidable hiccups along the way.

  • #2
    I'm running the Secrets campaign with my group currently. We're coming up on day 30 on the timeline, and the PCs are veteran rank (we played some homebrew adventures in the setting, before the Secrets book was published.)

    Our party consists of a Scarlet Knight, a Mage of the Order, and a Gatekeeper priestess of Thuul (yes, that Thuul. This has been very amusing.) We also have some notable/recurring allied NPCs, a stronghold the party built out of the Lucky Wheel Inn (from the sample dungeon in the DMs guide), and they are working on installing barracks and raising house troops at the stronghold now as well.

    I'm starting to setup our campaign on Savaged.us now, and if I can get my players to write up their characters there, I'll see if I can share a link to the character sheets. I'd like to see what other GM's think of how they are setup.

    When we first got our hands on the Tyrnador setting (pre-Secrets), the plan for this party was to build up a stronghold and resources to wage a campaign against the black dragon, to free the Giants, and ultimately to unite some remaining potential allies and go after the Necromancer at the Gate of Night (return of the king style...).

    The Secrets campaign is much different than what we set out after, but we're enjoying it so far. There are a few things that are worrying me at this point.

    - My players have already put together that the three sisters are the cultists, and they are basically planning to thwart them before the 4th sacrifice attempt at day 30. We have a few of the side adventures remaining (mainly stuff around Stonebridge), but I'm worried that the end of the campaign will be anti-climatic without a battle with the crawler.

    Two things to watch out for that have led to this for us; 1) the players discovered Undertown early, and fully explored it right away. So they found the entrance below the inn, with the cultists gear and other evidence. 2) Our priestess/Gatekeeper of Thuul used a raise on Divination to directly ask if the three sisters were the cultists performing the sacrifices.

    - The Trial savage tale was ponderous for us; the Knight would only accept the position of Sheriff on the up-and-up (so no risking of being outed as an imposter), and the party actually vouched for and saved Maurius from being accused/tried. So the tale was basically the wrap up of finding what happened to Ginny, and a checkpoint to introduce the Fellowthong Dwarves as they arrived.

    - I'm afraid I've mucked a few things up, because I missed some details that were spread out through the campaign book, especially early on. I've had to ret-con some info for the players about 3 times so far. Each time I've thought I had things corrected, something else has come up to contradict us, based on some detail I've missed from a completely different part of the book.

    - I've judiciously ramped up a lot of the dungeon encounters (wildcards instead of extras, greater numbers of enemies, more spells, etc.) because it's been difficult to challenge my players. They are all long-time experienced DnD players, so their good at avoiding traps and using options to deal with enemies. Also their character traits ramped up pretty quickly, with the new edges and additional setting rules from the Tyrnador players guide.

    A few other minor things I'd note about the setting, mainly for GM's about to start into it:

    - Some of the setting rules enable character traits to get pretty gonzo. The veteran Scarlet Knight in our group has parry 10, a boatload of toughness, and can soak nearly everything using armor absorption with armor that has extra hardiness. Our party uses deflection and protection to great effect on top of this, and the casters can keep spells up a good deal of the time by spending bennies to regain spell points frequently. This has basically led to a lot of power escalation to try to at least keep things interesting.

    - The arcane background rules in the setting are very confusing; we still can't really figure out how priests are supposed to gain new powers, and we've not found a good use for any of the blessings yet. Also, with the adventures taking the characters all over the map within the Secrets timeline, the players don't really get much of a chance to use their altars or arcane labs to do blessings/rituals or make magic items/etc.

    - There is an item (sewing needle/spool) in the Secrets campaign that can be found an an early encounter, that seems to make it impossible to hide secret doors/entrances/storage from the PCs. I would consider omitting that item, if I had to do it over again.

    Comment


    • #3
      We started with funnel characters run by players experienced with Savage Worlds. We're 13 sessions down and on day 36 or so, with the heroes just now making it to Veteran rank. Everyone seems to be having a really good time with it, but there are definitely some things we're gonna change.

      Making AB(Miracles) characters improve an altar or complete a faction quest just to get access to a new rank of powers seems like far more work than for the Wizards who can learn new spells from scrolls and spellbooks found. In addition, the Wizards can do research in a lab (similar to a priests altar) to gain new powers, but there is a LOT of treasure out there that adds to the Wizards Lab, while there is none that I have found that adds to a priests altar. Further complicating things are the fact that each type of priest would need their own altar. My group has representatives for Baarathi, Myrthala and Syir. Upgrading 3 separate altars would be prohibitively expensive, especially in a setting where loot takes real work to get.
      I think I'll ignore that requirement, but if the AB(Miracle) character upgrades their Altar, it's worth a conviction.

      I like the reputation mechanic and the players seem to like it. It's a shame the character sheet doesn't have a designated spot for it.

      I'm not sure if the downtime mechanic is worth it. I have only one player who has utilized it more than once.

      I'm still looking for the maps for Stonebridge (Secrets123) and the ship River Rose (Secrets204) as both of them are numbered area descriptions.

      Our group was up front from the start and just took on the job of sheriff. The Trial then (which we are in the middle of right now) has played out differently. Rather than Adrian making a big reveal at the end of the trial (since there isnt one to make unless the players opted to pretend to be the dead sheriff), I had a new player join us at that time and her reason for being in Tyland Mills was to visit an old friend she fought with in the Necromancer War - Marius. She advocated so well on his behalf, in her first session of playing a TTRPG ever, that the rest of the players are now convinced of his innocence and they're not even done collecting evidence!

      Comment


      • #4
        Other random bits....

        - I made a cheat sheet for things like dungeon checks (encounters vs light sources), travelling times, and rest. I also found that drawing cards ahead of time, whether it's for an overland encounter or dungeon checks, saved a lot of time during the session.

        - The character funnel works pretty well, but for whatever reason we have had only two humans drawn out of 20 characters made. We also changed it so that a Joker resulted in an Elf.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by JamGame View Post
          - My players have already put together that the three sisters are the cultists, and they are basically planning to thwart them before the 4th sacrifice attempt at day 30. We have a few of the side adventures remaining (mainly stuff around Stonebridge), but I'm worried that the end of the campaign will be anti-climatic without a battle with the crawler.
          Unless they kill two sisters, the crawler is still coming (albeit a bit weaker) because the cultists have 3 successful sacrifices before the campaign really starts. "If you fail, in the heart of the star you'll find your doom" means the last two sisters can provide the last two sacrifices even if the party save John and Lady Marian...

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by screenmonkey View Post

            Unless they kill two sisters, the crawler is still coming (albeit a bit weaker) because the cultists have 3 successful sacrifices before the campaign really starts. "If you fail, in the heart of the star you'll find your doom" means the last two sisters can provide the last two sacrifices even if the party save John and Lady Marian...
            Thanks - I see that. However, the PCs had physically detained (arrested) two of the sisters, and imprisoned them in a cell at the base of the Sheriffs tower. Then, in Friday nights game session, some lurkers showed up via the undertown entrance, waylaid the guard on duty, broke the two sisters out and tried to escape with them. The party was alerted, and managed to catch and ultimately kill the two sisters in the ensuing chase.

            We're now at the start of the Festival. The third sister is still at large, but the party has recruited aid and they are running patrols/searching for her, and running security for the festival. They probably won't find her prior to the attempted sacrifice, but I suspect they won't hesitate to kill her at this point when they do find her.

            Comment


            • screenmonkey
              screenmonkey commented
              Editing a comment
              OK, your players are beasts. I'm really glad my PCs were too weak to explore Undertown when they first encountered it. Even now as Veterans, they don't go down there unless they think they have to.
          Working...
          X