Thursday, January 31, 2019

Rangers of Shadow Deep, Mission 3: Descent into Darkness. Scenario 1: The Broken Stairs

 Rangers of Shadow Deep, Mission 3: Descent into Darkness

While the battle against the Shadow Deep rages along the line of the old beacon towers, you and your companions have made a huge discovery. Scouting the area behind Tor Varden, you found a long, deep fissure that runs down into the gloom of the Shadow Deep. Within this fissure is a rough and broken stairway. It seems too purposeful to be a natural occurrence, yet its rough surface and uneven, sloping steps argue against it being made by the hands of men. Reporting your find to your superiors, you quickly receive new orders. You are to lead your team down the stairs and penetrate as far as you can into the Shadow Deep. You will be the first warriors of Alladore to enter the cursed realm and any intelligence you can bring back will be of huge importance. Take any opportunity to strike against the enemy, but your primary goal is reconnaissance.

This report is a complete playthrough.

After recapturing the Beacon Tower- Tor Varden,  Ranger Blackwulf and company waste little time and rest , heal and resupply. Their job isn’t done.  Leofric , Man at of Arms of the Towers original garrison has left the group to help form up the new tower garrison leaving the Rangers a man short. Fortunately Blackwulf ‘s new orders where delivered by a young Arcanist, named Xavos.  Who on orders from the palace is to accompany the rangers into the Shadow Deep to help better translate and/or recover any ancients texts, scrolls or runestones they might find.

Blackwulfs updated Character sheet

Companions updated character sheet

In addition to listed items Gord and Xavos are each carrying a rope.
Gord, Thorvald, Guthrum and Sigurd each have a Torch.

 SCENARIO 1: The Broken Stairs

Laden down with provisions (for who knows if there is food or even drinkable water below?), you start the treacherous descent of the stairs. In some places you move quickly, in others, you must step lightly, checking your footing with each movement, as cracked and broken rocks crumble away. As you get lower, the air thickens and breathing becomes more difficult. Black ash floats in the breeze, filling your nostrils and stinging your eyes. You are just about to call for a break, when you hear a loud buzzing noise, first from one direction and then from the other. You ready your weapons, just as the first bloated body comes flitting into view.

Pre game notes

I spent a bit of time trying to figure out how I wanted to set up this scenario. I was originally tempted to scratch build the cliffside as its not that large. I’ve had an interest in building some vertical playable terrain for awhile now (this cliff is spec’d at a 60 degree angle) since its not practical  to leave the single 30” x 30” piece laying around for the rare instance I needed it , I spent an afternoon drawing / laying out and cutting some test foam for some modular cliffs. I quickly realized I was biting off a lot more work that this quick scenario realistically needed. I dropped the idea and put the current layout together based on what I had ready to go . The game mat is a different enough looking blast rocky surface,  the cork rocks  and Hirst bits are from an old Cave set up I did for Otherworld Skirmish a couple years back. The stairs are my wooden walkway from last game. (I have feeling I'll be getting plenty of use out of them)  the Flies are those cheapo flies from Amazon people have been talking about. I just repainted and based them.

All die rolls are shown as (X) all combat rolls are (x,x) The first number always being the heroes.

The target point in this scenario is the point where the stairs meet the bottom of the table.

There some special rules for moving especially off the stairs, which will result in Climb and Acrobatic checks. The is to simulate we are heading down a steep, dangerous rocky slope.
I’ll go over them when they come into play on the turn.

This scenario lasts 10 turns , there will be an event every turn.


The new kid Xavos, leads the group for about 5 mins and he is almost killed,

Blackwulf, uses group activation to activate , Gord, Skuti and Xavos

If we move make more than one move action on stairs we will have to make a Climb check TN8 or fall. No one on the team is a great climber so we start out making one move action.

Blackwulf moves 6 inches. Seeing a Giant Fly menacingly hovering above its hole  and fires and Arrow at it. (5,15) he misses.

Archers both fire a miss and a graze.

Skuti moves 6 inches and shoots at the same fly (5,5) he hits the fly winning 7 to 5 but only grazes the wing doing 1 damage.

Xavos move 6 inches and stops

Gord moves 7 inches ( I keep overlooking he has an extra inch of movement as a rogue this should be useful, if I can remember to use it)  he stops


The Giant Fly  (#1) attacks Blackwulf (10,7)  Blackwulf winning 14 to 7 at armor 6 with 4 remaining health the fly is swatted dead taking 8 damage

Blackwulf kills the first Fly,

Giant Fly (#2 and #3) both can see the group descending the stairs and fly 9 inches toward them.

First 3 Giant Flies on the board move to attack the heroes


Guthrum, Thorvald and Sigurd all move 6 inches down the stairs eyes peeled for incoming flies.


RED QUEEN –ughhh

Poison Fog. A waft of thick black cloud roils up from below and momentarily
envelops the heroes. Every hero should make an immediate Will Roll (TN10)
or it will not activate in the coming turn

Blackwulf +4 (16)   = 20 Pass
Sigurd +2      (17)   =19  Pass
Thorvald +2  (6)  = 8 Fail 
Guthrum +2  (5) =7  Fail
Xavos +2 (9)= 11 Pass
Gord +1  (7)  =8  Fail
Skuti +1  (6) = 7 Fail

Better now than later I guess.



Blackwulf  group activates  Sigurd and Xavos since the others are lost , coughing in the red fog.

Blackwulf fires his bow at oncoming Fly # 2 (10,18) a miss..I guess the red fog blocks line of sight.

Xavos  sets his rope toward fly hole number one so Sigurd and follow it this way he can move the full 9 inches and reach the hole this turn, however he must make the dangerous TN 8 climb check or fall.., Xavos then stays where he is

Sigurd attempts to move toward the fly hole he moves to rope continuing off the path along the rope to Fly Hole, his climb check (12) Pass

Fly Hole #1, Sigurd lights a torch for his next activation to seal it.


Fly # 2 no sees Sigurd as his closest target and attacks ( 11,4)  Sigurd bests it 14 to 4, again 8 damage cleaves the bug in two

Fly # 3 attacks Xavos..I was hoping I could get Blackwulf to snap in but a straight line at Xavos makes him more than an inch away, Xavos must fight alone  (16,18)  a tie!! At 18 to 18 the fly mauls Xavos before he kills with his spear..its bad wound thou..he takes 8 damage dropping to 2 health! He also must makes a disease TN 8 Check..(13)+ his 2 health is 15, pass.

Welcome to the Rangers, Kid...Xavos gets almost wiped out on turn 2.

Note:  Special Rule for Scenario

Any time a hero loses a combat in this scenario, that figure must immediately make either
a Climb Roll (TN10) or an Acrobatics Roll (TN10), or fall according to the same rules as above

Since combat here was a draw , I don’t count it as losing so I don’t make him check.


No other companions may activate this turn due to Red Fog event



Place one giant fly on each of three fly holes.

Sigurd had this second fly pop out of the hole right before he torched it, luckily Blackwulf blew it up with an arrow before it could act.

Kill three, get three back great!



Blackwulf activates Skuti, Guthrum and Gord using group activation

Blackwulf fires his bow at Fly #4 hovering near Sigurd by its Flyhole he shoots (15,15)
He hits the fly winning 17 to 15, the fly explodes taking 11 damage!

Skuti moves  6 and takes takes at the Fly # 6 he can see it clearly over some rocks but its going to get Hurried Shot, Light Cover and Intervening terrain bonuses so its +2, to +4  he shoots (18,14)  damn lucky he wins 20 to 18 and the fly is killed..5 flys down!

Skuti makes this long range hail mary thru the gap into the fly for his first kill of the match.

Gord and Guthrum both carefully advance 6…taking no other action.


Fly #5 coming from Flyhole 2 Flies 9 inches up the path toward the group using a double move


Sigurd light a torch and throws into Fly hole # 1 temporarily sealing it. His second action it too follow the rope back 6 inches to the path , as its treated as a single move over rough ground thanks to the rope he doest need to make the climb check.

Thorvald moves 6 along the path and holds

Xavos wounded and having set his rope takes no actions, we want him in the rear and not risk him getting killed as we may need him in the next few scenarios



Giant Fly appears at Hole 1

Since we Sigurd has just sealed that , we ignore this result. Good Job Sigurd



Blackwulf activates Skuti, Gord and Guthrum using group activation

Skuti moves 6 inches fires his bow at on coming Fly #5  Fly is +1 for intervening terrain
(20,19) yowza!  Skuti  wins 22 to 20..Im not sure how band you can kill a giant fly but Skuti’s arrow just did doing 21 damage with the critical setting a new record for highest damage dealt in a single attack yet. 

Gord makes a single 6 inch move down the stairs and with his second action sets his rope toward the treasure token and flyhole # 2

Guthrum moves 6 to the set rope and holds

Blackwulf risks a double move on the stairs and must check TN8 he is +2 climb and rolls (12)


No creatures on the board



Landslide. Randomly select two heroes. Both of those figures suffer an immediate
+2 shooting attack as large rocks come crashing down from above.

I roll Skuti and Gord

Skuti +2 vs +2 (19,9)  miss
Gord +1 vs +2 (11,7)  miss

Got lucky there



Unwitting I moved Blackwulf too far ahead he is out of range to group activate anyone its fine because there are currently no creatures on the board.

Blackwulf got a little too far ahead of the group here, keep an eye on distance for group activation purposes.

Blackwulf moves 4 inches toward flyhole # 3 staying on the path and stops


No Creatures on the board


Guthrum makes a single 6 inch move along the rope and stops he cant reach the flyhole with risking a climb check so I hope we don’t draw any flies from this hole coming up

Hmm..No Flies here?

Gord also makes a single 6 inch move along the rope and stops to pickup the treasure token

All remaining companions make a single 6 inch move



“Place one giant fly on Fly Hole 1 and Fly Hole 2”

Well the “best laid plans” and all that  Flyhole 1 is sealed so one more giant fly join the party I guess it heard him coming

Spoke too soon, oh look a giant fly!



Again Blackwulf has no one in range and activates alone

Blackwulf hears his companions yelling but cant see them, he moves down the stairs 6 inches and has a clear view of the fly menacing Guthrum. He shoots an arrow (7,6) winning  9 to 7
(+2 shoot vs +1 for hurried shot) he hits the fly but only does 3 damage it still alive.

Blackwulf hits the fly but the low roll does not kill it.


Fly proceeds to attack Guthrum.  (4,13) Guthrum can do little while hanging on the rope to defend himself he loses  7 to 13 while its only 2 points of damage  unike Xavos earlier Guthrum lost combat so must make a climb or acrobatics check at TN 10  Guthrum is climb +0 I roll (9)
So Guthrum falls 1 inch toward the bottom and takes another damage for 3 damage total
Guthrum has 9 health  Now he also must make a disease check (14) and passes easy


Gord , treasure in hand sees Guthrum slip and fall , the fly is looking at him next
Gord throws  his lucky throwing knife (20,9)wow unreal- its truly is lucky… wins 21 to 9  at -1 damage is still 14 damage another dead fly, 7 flies down, he second action he moves back to the stairs.

Guthrum gets up and climbs 3 inches to torch the fly hole as Gord kills the fly with a throwing knife.

Guthrum even falling off the rope is still close to Fly hole 2 he can reach it with safe 3 inch move action, his second action he throws a torch into the hole sealing it.

 The remaining companions all make a single move down the stairs stopping opposite Fly hole # 3



Place two giant flies on hole 3

Are you kidding me!! This game has a mind of its own.

2 more flies join the party,



Blackwulf , again sadly out of range for group activation.

Fires off bow shot at the closest Fly (#8) (13,18) and  misses

Flys attack!


Fly #8  attacks Skuti (11,15) biting him wining 13 to 15..its 5 damage and Skuti must make the fall down the stairs roll (19)  he doesn’t fall holding his ground with 5 6 health remaining
Disease Check (4) +6 =10 pass no disease

Fly #9 attacks Sigurd (5,12)  Sigurd also loses to the fly 12 to 8..12 vs his 12 armor does no damage but he must make the Climb check rolls (1) !! ughh Sigurd loses his balance falling 9 inches down the stairs taking 9 damage he has 3 health

Sigurd takes the max fall possible..but lives


Thorvald moves to engage Fly# 9 (3,2) he wins 6 to 2 two handed weapon makes the 6 an 8 for damage purposes so he does 2 damage to the Fly

Xavos moves around Skuti to help him out versus Fly #8 . (14,4) With Skuti’s support he wins 18 to 4 more than enough to kill the Fly
Xavos the Arcanist gets his 1st kill

Gord moves 6 down the Stairs

Guthrum moves over rough ground down the Cliffside toward Blackwulf on the path
He only goes 3 inches to stay safe from the Climb check.

Guthrum slowly working his way back to the stairs


RED 10

Corpse. Choose one figure and have that figure make a Perception Roll (TN8).
If successful, place a corpse marker 3” from the figure that made the roll, but
not on the stairway. A figure that moves into contact with the corpse marker
may spend an action to search it. It may make an immediate roll on the Herbs
and Potions Table. In addition to the item generated by that roll, it discovers a
love letter from this young soldier of Lorenthia to his lady love in Alladore

I choose Guthrum since narratively he’s in an ideal spot for this, even thou I have 2 characters with +5 perception- he rolls (8) on the nose. He will search on his next turn



Blackwulf activates Sigurd via group activation

Blackwulf moves to Sigurd and Cast Heal on him bringing him to 8 health.

Sigurd, moves down the Stairs 6 inches and reaches the bottom of the Cliff


Fly #9 continues trying to gnaw on Thorvald (18,7) he smashes it to paste with his hammer.


No more ropes.

Thorvald, emboldened  by his Kill moves off the path making a double move across the rocky slope to reach the final Flyhole . He makes the TN8 Climb check (13)

Thorvald moves to torch the last fly hole.

Wounded Skuti and Xavos continue down the stairs 6 inches.

Gord continues down the stairs carrying the treasure

Guthrum moves to the corpse and searches it recovering some Anthalas  herb and a love letter.

Blackwulf leads the others to the bottom of the stairs, Guthrum finds a corpse on the rocky slope.



Place one giant fly on flyhole 2

Well Flyhole 2 is sealed!, sucka



Blackwulf group activates Xavos and Skuti

All three make single move toward the bottom of the stairs


No creatures on the board


Gord moves 7 inches down the stairs..

Thorvald Seals Flyhole # 3 with a Torch and moves 3 inches back toward the path

Guthrum moves 3 inches closer to the path

Sigurd is already at the bottom of the stairs/ exited table



Place one giant fly on each of the three fly holes

All fly holes are sealed.



Blackwulf group activates Skuti, Xavos and Gord all 4 move to the bottom of the stairs joining Sigurd exiting the table

5 reach the bottom of the stairs during the scenario.


No Creatures on the board


Thorvald and Guthrum safely make single moves back to the Stairs



Place one giant fly on Fly Hole 3

All fly holes are sealed.


Here we must make a Navigation Check (TN8) to map stairs, this must be done by a figure who hasn’t fallen to 0 health.

Ranger Blackwulf breaks out his Book of Astronomy for a total of +6 Navigation he only rolls a (6) but his skill makes up the difference and the broken stairs are mapped.


+2 XP for each Fly Killed – 9 flies killed 18XP
+5 XP for each hole sealed –we sealed all three 15XP
+2 XP for each hero that exits the bottom during the scenario  we had 5 -10xp
+8 XP if the Stairs are mapped – They are 8 XP
+8 XP if the love letter was recovered.  It was 8XP

59 XP total

All companions receive 1 progression point

Sigurd joins the 5pp club gaining an extra health point.

Treasure Token roll (10) herb or potion roll (11) Potion of Healing.

Potion of Healing – Gord
Anthalas herb- Guthrum
Love Letter- Xavos


Relatively easy based on how much XP we got, there were much harder scenarios where we earned much less. I think having ropes are key here, I would recommend 3 , that way you can reach the fly holes quicker and it makes sense these characters would have some ropes
I also made my ropes one use items to go along with how equipment is generally set up in the game

Again I got lucky on quite a few ranged attacks, the flies don’t hit hard per say unless you get a fluky roll,its the climb checks that are going to kill you…

No one was knocked out of action , which hasn’t happened since the 1st mission’s 2nd scenario. Now we rest for a day and move into the Swamps .Scenario 2 : Swampland is next.



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