This week I read:
Volume 16 of Overlord by Kugane Maruyama
I enjoyed this, but it could have been combined with the previous volume, since they’re two parts of the same story arc and both volumes are a little shorter than the others. But it’s fine. I liked it. We got some more foreshadowing that Albedo is up to something, and the author announced in the afterward that the story will conclude with volume 18, so hopefully that foreshadowing will get resolved.
Unfortunately, there’s no volume 17 yet, not even in Japanese. And there’s a lag of 1 or 2 years before each volume is translated, so there’s a long wait ahead…
Speaking of long waits, back in 2021 they announced a film covering volumes 12 and 13, but I don’t think there’s been any further news on that.
The Halls of Arden Vul
This week’s session was really fun. We ended the previous session just after two retainers got killed by ghouls and the rest of the party barely escaped. So we started this session with the PCs feeling defeated and deciding to retreat.
And then they encountered a ghost.
This ghost couldn’t speak, but he managed to communicate (through me describing what he was pantomining and the PCs writing things in the dust on the floor and having the ghost point at them) that he’s been haunting these rooms unable to rest because he’s unburied—because of the very ghouls and wight that just drove the PCs away!
So, with revenge and a goal (put the ghost to rest) in mind, the players spent a while discussing combat tactics and how they could use a chokepoint in the dungeon plus a few spear-wielding retainers to get an advantage over the ghouls. Then they marched straight back to town, hired a small army of retainers, outfitted them with armour, spears, and holy water… and marched back to the dungeon to strike back at their foes!
They ended up killing four of the ghouls at their chokepoint before the wight got them under control and pulled them back. So if the players intend to finish the job, they need to pursue into the wight’s home territory.
A fun roleplaying encounter, careful strategising, and then putting the plan in action to turn the tables on the enemies who almost wiped them out last time. It was great.
RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha
I’ve decided that the next one-shot will be RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha, because I want to try out a different sort of fantasy, in a different sort of system. I’m going to run a short scenario from the GM Screen Pack wherein the PCs are tasked with protecting a herd of sacred cattle from a couple of saber-toothed cats that have appeared in the area.
I want to try out character creation too, rather than use pregens, so I think this’ll be a two-parter. Probably going to run it after session 12 of the Arden Vul campaign, so the 20th and 27th of August.
I’ve been reading the corebook this week. There’s a lot to like! At its core it’s the same simple d100 skill-based system as Call of Cthulhu—and for everything but the specific genre of D&D-style fantasy I vastly prefer skill-based systems—but it’s got the crunch dialled up to Pathfinder levels, which I’m usually not so much a fan of. But it’s interesting enough to give it a go, I find the high magic bronze-age setting really intriguing, and the crunch will hopefully only be an impediment to getting started.