Thursday, October 23, 2014

Patron Supported 5-Minute Adventures - Easy as Pie

With Halloween right around the corner and the release of The Nerdy Show's Franchise Kit earlier this week I decided to whip out some old .pdfs, look over a Anti-Paladin's Mini Six system and hit the bricks running ... away from some ghosts!

Typically my Patrons would get this 24 hours ahead of the blog, but today ... well, today is not going so well and I wanted to maybe make some people out there happy (they do still get the cleaner pdf version though!)! So strap on your proto ... I mean Electron Blaster and bust some Ghos ... Paranormal Entities!

Easy as PIE

A frighteningly Fun Adventure for 4 to 6 Characters!

Setting Introduction and Rules modification.

Ghosts, demons and the things that go bump in the night are real. They're out there, their in your closets, under your beds and in your breakfast cereals. Some place in the world have high concentrations of the paranormal, some have almost none, but everywhere from the forgotten sewers of New york city to the cult infested wastes of Siberia have some paranormal activity. That is were we come in … and maybe, you. We are a loose consortium of franchises started nearly 30 years ago by the original Paranormal Investigations and Extermination team or PIE for short. Since that time, the organization has spread out across the world and has founded dozens of franchisees, and now it is your turn. For as little as $50,000 USD you can become a part of this consortium and fight the good fight against the evils that haunt, terrorize and just plain creep the living out.

Remember, if someone or their family has seen a spook, specter, or ghost, we believe them.

P.I.E. is a game of paranormal horror comedy, a realm in which ghosts and ghouls exist and want nothing more than to scare the living crap out of normal humans … when they're not trying to bring total destruction upon the world … and it is up to you to do Something about it. You are equiped with the proper gear, you have the will to be the one to stand up and do the Something everyone wants. The question is, can those people pay and is will enough when you battle the unknown and have no clue what it is you're supposed to do?

P.I.E. uses the Open d6 rules variation Mini Six and is capable of being played with nothing more than that single pdf. However, as it is with most things there are alternate and variations on the rules presented in Mini Six.
  • Dice cannot be split into individual pips. Its all or nothing.
  • Everyone starts with 20 hero points. These points can be spent to add an extra dice to any action. However, hero points are lost on any “wounded” or above attack. If a player runs out of hero points he or she is considered too exhausted to continue on.
  • Since there are no pips allowed, CP can only be spent in the manner or increasing the total number of die. To this the player needs to spend 10 x Dice# in the skill or attribute he or she is attempting to increase.
  • The wild Die always s has a negative result. The severity of that result depends on how well or bad the player who rolled the dice rolled.

There is also new equipment that P.I.E. team members have access to.

Electron Blaster – A special piece of equipment that allows the PIE. member to interact with and harm nearly any paranormal entity. If the PIE member successfully hits(Range from blaster +5 Difficulty) a paranormal entity (PE) with the Electron Blaster the PE losses 1 tether.
Paranormal Entrapment Device (PED) – A large, disk-like device that can successful capture and contain a PE. When the PE is brought to 0 tether it can be trapped. For the trap to work the PE most be harnessed by at least two electron blaster beams.
Detector – The Detector is a small, hand-held device that allows the PIE member to locate the general direction and power-level of a PD.

The Adventure
The P.I.E. team has been called in to investigate an old gas station off of route 6 in the backwood of the area. The report claims that the small gas station has been experiencing more then a few weird occurrences. The sluishe machine will turn on but none of the slush ever hits the floor, it merely vanishes. Customers have complained that items they pick up are gone by the time they reach their vehicle, and more than once an employee will walk in and find the entire store has been rearranged; Typically by way or sticking (through some means) everything to the ceiling. While these events have been going on for months the owner has ordered his employees to just deal with the issues as they appear. That changed last night when a young employee named Steven was nearly drowned by his own mop bucket.

When the players arrive at the gas station they find a place that should have been condemned and burned into the bowels of hell itself years ago. The windows are dirty, the neon glow of the beer advertisements are barely noticeable under the decades of grime. Most telling however, is that a single vehicle rests in the parking lot of the gas station and a huge “Closed” notice can be seen tapped to the door of the station. Once the players leave their vehicle, the door of the black SUV will open and a large man wiggles out and walks toward the players.

Lewis Digby's family has owned the station for two generations and have seen it through depression, war and the downfall of the coal towns. He is large and somewhat nervous looking, his Hawaiian shirt and shorts slightly too tight for the man's large girth. As he approaches the players anyone who succeeds a Moderate Wits Challenge will notice that Lewis' forehead is beading with sweat and he is looking around nervously. Just as the large man opens his mouth to speak to the players the four gas pumps flare up and catch fire and a roars erupts into the night as the fire start to swirl together.

Paranormal Fire – Might 4 (Brawl); Agility 3 (Throwing); Wit 1 (Search); Charm 1(Intimidate); Perks (3) Heat Wave (all within 5' range must succeed a Moderate Agility Check or suffer 1D damage); Insubstantial; Scare (Succeed a Difficult Charm Check or suffer a Complication for 1 round); Weaknesses (2) Fire; Complex Thought; Attack (1) Fireball (1D damage if successful); Tether 4

The Paranormal Fire seem solely intent on Lewis and unless harmed by the players will ignore them in favor of the large man. Lewis is for one round completely terrified and is only able to babble incoherently. After the first round Lewis will attempt to run back to his car and if successfully run away.
Once the Paranormal Fire is extinguished and if Lewis is still in the area he will offer the PIE team anything if they can remove the threat from his business. If Lewis has vacated one of the PIE team will get a phone call from him stating the same. Either way, after the Paranormal Fire is defeated an eerie fog will encompass the station, emanating from within the station itself.

The unnatural fog is itself a paranormal entity, but not one that has a will, purpose or mind of its own. Any player who makes a successful Moderate Wits check would know that the unnatural fog are the protozoa of the spiritual realm, a near ambient spiritual energy that follows any significant encroachment upon reality. While in the fog the players have a stronger than normal chance of getting separated and lost in the fog, requiring Moderate Wit Check to not do so. The unnatural for extends in a hundred yard radius from the station

The Station

There are three entry points to the station. The main glass doors which stand open and inviting, the garage door (Area 6) which appears to be bolted into the ground and requires a Very Difficult Might Check to open and a rear emergency exit (Area 4) which appears to be torn open, the door itself resting half buried into the sheer rock of the hill behind the station.

The Shop (Area 1)

The convenience area of the gas station is small compared to larger chain stations and features only four aisles, a refrigeration unit and a rack dedicated to adult entertainment. If any of the players happen to use the Detector the device will go “off the charts” and begin to overheat. If the player is not quick enough to turn the Detector off it will catch on fire in their hand.

After exploring the area for a bit the players should find nothing out of the ordinary, if and when they attempt to leave the entire room should begin to shake and get more violent with every step toward an exit the players make. After a few moments of this the items in the convenience area will begin to shoot off the shelves zipping toward the players. Further the sluishe and fountain drink machine will begin to pour onto the floor from its fountain.

The Bathrooms (Areas 2 & 3)

While relatively normal looking rest stop bathrooms, the rooms have been subtle changed by whatever presence is haunting this place. Whenever a player looks into the mirror of either bathroom the mirror will attempt to scare the player requiring a Difficult Charm Check. The toilet paper (to which there seems an infinite amount) will attempt to wrap around and suffocate any player that steps within 5' of the toilets, helping to trip up the players for attack by the Possessed Toilets.

Possessed Toilets – Might 4 (Brawl); Agility 0 (Dodge); Wit 0; Charm 0; Perks (1) Swirly (On any attack that would result in the target losing a Hero Point the Possessed Toilet can force the head of the target into its bowel and flush, causing the target to temporarily lose 1 Charm for the session); Weaknesses (2) Complex Thought; Stationary; Tether 1

Storage (Area 4)

A long narrow corridor jammed on either side with foodstuffs, trail-sized medicines and sodas. The left side of the area appears to have been savaged and all that remains are the shredded boxes and containers that once peacefully existed here. The back emergency door to the station appears to have been ripped open and thrown into a nearby hill.

A Very difficult Wits check will reveal an old news paper clipping from a year ago. Must of the clipping is unreadable due to various stains and rips but what is legable states:

The recent tragedy at the Digby Family Gas Station has left the community in shock as mechanic Jack Umbrige is mourned and local investigators search for answers in the station's garage where Jack was fou …. “

Freezer (Area 5)

The metal freezer room houses the ice cream, cold drinks and other things in need of freezing and refrigeration. When the players enter this area the door behind them will lock(Very Difficult Might Check to force open) and the freezing mist will grow, cutting visibility down to a mere three feet. The Temperature dips causing the need for a Difficult Might Check. If the players fail the take a -1D penalty to an Attribute of their choice.

The Freezer has become the home of a Personification, a type of PE that is the personification of an emotion, thought-type and so on. In this case the Personification is that of Gluttony. The PE has no eyes, no nose, nothing but a semi-spherical bod, an over-sized mouth with razor sharp teeth and four overly long spindly arms. The PE will ignore the players unless the players attempt to interact with it or any of the foodstuffs in the Freezer.

Ice Cream GluttonMight 2 (Brawl); Agility 3 (Dodge); Wit 1; Charm 2; Perks (3) Insubstantial, fly (60 ft/round); Slimed (target must make a Moderate Charm Check or suffer -1d penalty to Charm for the scene); Weaknesses (1) Salt (Burn away 1 Tether on unsuccessful Very Difficult Wit Check); Tether 3

If the Personification is defeated the freezing mist will dissipate and the door will naturally unlock, freeing the players from the freezer. If the players decide to investigate the freezer a Moderate Wits Check will reveal a half frozen brown lunch lunch bag containing a half eaten bologna sandwich, three Oreos and an apple. There is also a handwritten note with several hearts drawn on it stating “I can't wait for our vacation! Lara xoxoxo” In large block letters the name Jack is written on the outside of the bag.
The Garage (Area 6)
At first glance the garage looks to be the most normal thing about the gas station. The clean floor sports relatively few stains and all the tools have been neatly polished and sit in regular rows. Aside from the tools and implements of the mechanic's trade the area is empty. A Very Difficult wits investigation will reveal the five pentacles that have been smeared on the garage's four pillars and back wall.

After a few minutes of investigation the garage will shake requiring an Easy Agility Check for the players to remain upright. When the garage stops shaking it will look different. Three cars are on lifts about ten feet from the ground, while a third lift only has part of a car on it, the back end of the car is on the ground, a man's body pinned under it, struggling to move as a pool of black blood forms around him.

He killed me” A voice booms through out the garage as the scene plays on.

Lewis Digby walks through one of the players from out of the shadows and kneels down next to the figure. “I'll never understand it.” The man says, his voice strangely high pitched. “You could have been a partner Jack, could have been rich in your own right.” Lewis pulls out a pack of cigarettes and lights one, putting it to Jack's grimacing lips. “Just had to keep quiet about it and I would have cut you in … but telling the feds ...” Lewis shakes his head.

I didn't think he'd find out.” The voice booms. “Thought I could do the right thing and get enough to bet Lara and I out of here.”

Well, I own the local cops … or their women … you'll be a tragic accident, nothing more and the case … poof,” Lewis empathizes this by blowing out a whiff of smoke. “All gone, like smoke in the wind.” Lewis turns to leave. Oh, and don't worry, I'll take care of that pair of legs you keep around.”

I JUST WANTED TO DO THE RIGHT THING!”

The cars begin to shake and contort, the sound of tearing metal strikes the air. In a moment of impossibility the cars slam together meld and change into the form of a giant machine ape.

The players can try to talk Jack down but it is too late, he has been too overcome by his own hatred and need for retribution that all he knows now is the destruction of the man who killed him.

Car-Golem JackMight 6 (Brawl); Agility 3 (Dodge); Wit 1; Charm 2 (Intimidate); Perks (2) Armored (+3 to Electron Blaster Difficulty); Scare (Succeed a Difficult Charm Check or suffer a Complication for 1 round);; Weaknesses (1); Tether 8

When Jack is defeated the cars will come crashing down but before they hit the room will return to normal. An investigation of the station will show that everything is back to how it should be (save the mess the PIE team made). Any readings from the detector will come back negative as the spiritual energy that soaked the station has dissipated.

Concluding the Adventure

The PIE team now knows what truly happened to Jack, but have no concrete evidence to pull against Lewis Digby. If the players should confront Lewis with this new information he will attempt to buy their silence for a thousand dollars a month. If the players don't bite he'll attempt to have them killed. Alternatively the players could keep their mouths shut and just accept the payment offered for their services.

The adventure leaves a few questions hanging in the air. Can a ghostly crime scene count as evidence? More importantly, who or what ripped off the rear door to the station? Was it connected to the current case or something else that was drawn by the large amounts of spiritual energy that had soaked into the station since Jack's death. 


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