May 08, 2012

RPG Play: Monkey Pirates Session One

Previously in the Monkey Pirates RPG blog series:
Introduction to the game
Character Creation

(Blogger's Note:  My kids showed a good deal of creativity in the parts which they narrated; and they all kind of helped each other tell their parts of the story, which was fun to see.  Obviously, some of the adjectives and adverbs are a bit above their grade levels and were added in by me for flavor at the time of transcription.)

Monkey Pirates and the Temple of the Baboon Queen
Date Played: April 21, 2012
Time: 1 hour, 22 minutes

The mongrel crew of the Dirty Bunch grabs their usual table at the Leaning Banana, lazily throwing back banana slushies and taking in their surroundings.  It is late into the night and the tavern is lit by only a handful of coconut oil lamps.  The generally rowdy primate patrons are unusually subdued this night as the three observe a crowd gathered around and listening intently to Jacquette Balcescu.  The wily gypsy is known for her thrilling, if tall, tales.  The crew pretends not to be interested, yet strains their rounded ears toward the storytelling, only faintly catching mention of a baboon warrior, magical amulet, evil powers, and the royal governor of the Ape Isles.

Eventually, she finishes spinning her mysterious yarn with a mystical smile and the crowd disperses.  The crewchimps of the Dirty Bunch are quite intrigued, though, and want to know more.  Approaching the crafty fox, young Shiver Paw opens the inquiry.  “Ah, Jacquette, nice story you told, there. Might it be true?”

She looks at them teasingly.  “Why would I tell it, if it weren’t?”

“Well,” replies Shiver Paw, “where would that amulet be now, do you think?”

Cory rolls a Chatter test to get the information needing a 3 on the monkey die and a 4 on the chatter die.  He rolls a 1,4 and fails.  They’ll not get the info as easy.

Jacquette laughs, “Hmmmm, and what would be in it for me?”

The captain steps in standing up straight, “What do you want in exchange for the information?”

She thinks.  “Well, I do need a special, hard-to-get ingredient for my ear wax removal potion.  I’m running low.”

“What,” asks the stout leader.

“A hummingbird’s tooth.”

“I can help with that,” beams Blue Tail.  “I’m good at finding things!”

The three traipse out into the dense, island foliage as the new day begins to break in search of the elusive hummingbird.

Hope rolls a Sailing test to locate a hummingbird needing a 3 on the pirate die and a 2 on the sailing die.  She rolls a 6,3 and succeeds.

[Hope narrated] Walking along, Blue Tail knows that hummingbirds love the sound of music, so she starts humming a beautiful melody.  Finally a hummingbird hovers right behind her and she suddenly spins around, nabs the poor, unsuspecting bird, squeezing it by the throat to open its beak, and pries out a tiny tooth.  She does release the innocent bird.

Tooth in hand, the trio returns to find Jacquette in the Leaning Banana.  Happy that she’ll be able to remake her famous ear wax removal potion, she gladly tells the pirates that, according to legend, the amulet is in the Temple of the Baboon Queen on Saber Island, secure around her statue’s neck.  But before they can enter the Temple, they will face two tests: the haircutting razors and the eye-gouging finger pokers.  And if they pass such dreaded obstacles, they best run fast when snatching the amulet: once removed, the Queen’s head will fall off and crush the would-be thief that dares to steal the jewelry.

Before leaving, Brendon spends a Treasure point to buy a rope (climbing aid) and Hope spends a Treasure point to buy a fancy hat (chatter aid).  Hope then rolls a Sailing test to navigate to Saber Island needing a 3 on the pirate die and a 2 on the sailing die.  Unfortunately she rolls an opposite 2,3 and fails.  The ship’s wheel comes off and the vessel sails off course and into a terrible storm.  Brendon rolls a Swords test (vs. the storm) to fight through the storm needing a 3 on the pirate die and a 2 on the swords die; meanwhile the storm will need to roll a 4 on both die.  Brendon rolls a 3,3 and the storm rolls a 5,1.  Brendon wins.

[Brendon narrated] Captain John Smith quickly goes below and grabs some gorilla tape (nice thematic touch, I thought!) and runs back up to slap the wheel back on its post.  Then the tireless commander runs back below, and fixes a leak in the hull with some extra wood, but notices that lightening fried the ship’s sails.  Ordering every monkey to bring out their extra clothes and underwear, he sews together a new sail, rigs it up, and the boat reaches Saber Island, everyone wet and weary.

Land spotted ahead, the Dirty Bunch drifts toward the floating paradise.  The rest of the crew tease Hope fiercely for sailing into a storm, which hurts her feelings; but what do they care, they’re pirates!  Anchoring offshore, the three brave pirates row to the nearest beach.  It is hot and humid.  The dense jungle looks impassable, though the captain, Shiver Paw, and Blue Tail search up and down the tree line.

Hope rolls a Sailing test to locate a path needing a 3 on the pirate die and a 2 on the sailing die.  She rolls a 4,3 and succeeds.

[Hope narrated] Blue Tail is very thirsty and hungry from the storm and starts to look more for food, rather than a path.  But bending down to look at some berries on the ground, she notices some pelican footprints trailing off in the steamy jungle.  She decides this must lead somewhere and so calls to the other two primates.

So, the three monkey pirates begin hacking their way down the narrow pelican path.  The thick forest canopy provides plenty of shade to help combat the heat.  Finally, they notice light pouring forth into a clearing ahead.  Excited, they hurry forward to investigate when a fearsome Ninja Squirrel ambushes them and blocks their path.  “None shall pass,” he ominously declares in a high, squeaky voice.

Brendon rolls a Swords test (vs. the ninja squirrel) needing a 3 on the pirate die and a 2 on the swords die; meanwhile the ninja squirrel will need to roll a 4 on both die.  Brendon rolls a 3,1 while the squirrel rolls a 5,6 – so Brendon fails and will suffer a penalty of -1 to his Chatter stats for an embarrassing and ugly ear injury.

The ninja squirrel catches Captain Smith off guard with a furious barrage of deadly throwing-acorns, and then dashes between his legs as the captain desperately throws his arms up to block the flying cupules.  Running up his back, the martial arts nut grabs Smith’s ears, violently pulling and stretching them into a hideous, grotesque deformity.  Screaming in pain, the captain reaches back and rips the kung-fu rodent off and tosses it to Shiver Paw who uses his superior athletic ability to launch the bushy-tale foe far into the jungle.

When the other two finish laughing at their hapless leader, they all look up to behold a magnificent, stone temple, with ivy weaving around its partially crumbling exterior.  The intrepid trio ventures in, heeding Jacquette’s warnings about the traps.  Shiver Paw remembers the first one as the haircutting razors and volunteers to go first.

Cory rolls a Climbing test to get through the trap needing a 3 on the monkey die and a 2 on the chatter die.  He rolls a 6,5 and succeeds.

[Cory narrated] Shiver Paw walks into the Temple looking around very carefully for the razors.  He notices a monkey skull on the floor of the hallway and is scared at first, but then happens to see a banana lying right beside it.  It looks good and, well, he loves bananas, so he bends down to pick it up and then the razors slice just above him.  He dives forward and falls on his back looking up to see a giant red button on the wall that reads, “Push to stop haircutting razors.”  So he pushes the button.

The adventuring party continues.  As they reach deeper into the temple, it grows darker, cooler, and damper.  Approaching a large wall that splits the chamber in half, they stop, remembering the second trap – the eye-gouging finger pokers.  Blue Tail bravely, but cautiously, steps forward.

Hope rolls a Climbing test to get through the trap needing a 5 on the monkey die and a 4 on the climbing die.  She rolls a 2,6 and fails, but explodes the 6 to re-roll the failed monkey die and rolls a 4, still failing. She will suffer a -1 on her sailing trait for impaired vision.

Blue Tail looks about, studying the layout of the chamber, and then steps toward the wall ahead.  Just then a v-shaped projectile flies out of a stone from the center of the wall and pokes the young monkey in the eyes!  As she reels back in stinging pain, Captain Smith and Shiver Paw race in to the source of the shot and plug the hole with a small rock.

Still not in possession of what they came for, they enter the next chamber – a large, cavernous, hexagonal room, well-lit from open, slit windows at the top.  Straight ahead stands a 24-foot statue of the Baboon Queen with a dazzling gold and silver amulet around her neck, bedecked with rubies and sapphires and emeralds and diamonds.  The three starry-eyed primates study the situation.  Shiver Paw is the most agile.

Cory rolls a Climbing test to get the amulet needing a 3 on the monkey die and a 2 on the climbing die.  He rolls a 1,1 and disastrously fails!  He uses his luck point to succeed anyway.

[Cory narrated] Shiver Paw stares up at the Queen’s face from her feet at the bottom of the statue.  Starting the climb up over her toe, he readies himself to swing up to her knees, but trips on her toe nail and falls back to the ground.  On the verge of getting mad, he notices that his climbing shakes the statue which causes some loose stones to fall all around, including her nose, which wasn’t attached very well.  As the nose falls off, it hits the amulet and breaks it free from her neck, knocking it down to where Shiver Paw catches it just before it hits the ground!  Then her whole head begins to fall off, and so Shiver Paw rolls over and quickly runs out of the throne room with the others just as her big head smashes to pieces behind them.

Not knowing what else the cursed island has in store for the pirate thieves, the three scoundrels run back to the Dirty Bunch and set sail for home.  Back to the – relative – safety of Pirate Island, Captain John Smith visits the dry goods dealer, Pugwash Forkedtongue, and is able to heal his ears by sprinkling alum on them to shrink them back to normal size.  Unfortunately, Blue Tail is unable to find a prescription to heal her eyesight.

I do award all three players with one Treasure point and one Luck point each as a reward for a very good effort in their first ever RPG session!

Now, to see what exactly in the world this amulet does…

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