Last week we played our third session co-GMing a Dungeon World Funnel and test-driving Jason Lutes’s Perilous Journeys. One friend couldn’t play, so we hacked up something to do: villager gauntlets. To see how other villagers fared when the Dog-men attacked, to explore and expand on the village and its surroundings, to create pools of other villagers should the current bunch not make it out of the Lost Tomb of….
We made up rules for the gauntlets as we went along. The basic idea was: the default for failure was a villager died, and the gauntlet ended at predestined point if anyone survived. Lucky I still had 132 pre-printed villagers…
We used the village map we created during funnel creation for Griffinmere to pick locations to focus on. We ended up running two gauntlets:
– Tower-in-the-hole, an ancient tower rising from the centre of a bottomless pit, and
– the Forest, north of the defensive ditch maintained by Griffinmere.
We pulled out Plumb the Depths and decided on foundation, themes, and areas for the Tower-in-the-hole and the Forest. This worked surprisingly well for things not typical “dungeons”.
The Forest gauntlet is probably most interesting. We had 12 villagers, four each player, trying to escape the Dog-men chasing them into the Forest. We decided on four stages to the gauntlet: the ditch, the forest, the river, and the Volkar Stones. Each stage required a roll for each villager modified by one of two of their stats:
– STR or DEX to survive the ditch
– WIS or DEX to make it out of the forest
– WIS or CON to escape the Dog-men’s tracking by surviving the river, and
– WIS or INT to find shelter amidst the Volkar Stones.
Villagers actions (and death) would be coloured by the mod they rolled with.
10+ meant the villager was ahead of most villagers and safe. In the next stage, failure meant moving to the slow group, rather than death, as they are helped by villagers who catch up to them.
7-9 meant the villager was in the slow group. The villager with the lowest luck in the slow group dies. All villagers tied for lowest luck die. The Dog-men were picking off the slowest.
6- meant the villager dies if they also fail a luck roll. If you haven’t read Funnel World, anything less than 10 on a luck roll is failure. Success on the luck roll put the villager in the slow group and so up for elimination if they had or tied for the lowest luck.
Forest Gauntlet: Four rolls per villager with a choice for best modifier and a luck save on failure.
Result: Only 3 of the 12 villagers made it through.
All-in-all a fun diversion, providing plenty of fuel for later adventures, fronts and rumours following the Devastation of Griffinmere.