Friday, March 18, 2016

Play Report: Special Delivery

Last night I once again had the opportunity to run a Call of Cthulhu game at the Malted Meeple. I've actually been running a number of games in the last few months; this is just my first opportunity to report on one.

I ran a Delta Green game using my 2014 shotgun scenario submission, Special Delivery. Warning: spoilers ahead. If you plan on playing this game (as I plan on running it again), do not read any farther.


Still here? Good!

I knew the game was not going to last 4 hours, so we started by creating characters using the Call of Cthulhu 7th ed quick start method. Things went quickly and within 45 minutes everyone had their character. We had 2 criminals, a lawyer, and a PI. Not your typical DG cell makeup, but still made for a lot of fun.

The game started with the agents being briefed that they needed to retrieve a Russian Icon that was reported contained the spirit of Rasputin (spoiler: it did not). The icon had been sent from an antique shop known to sell mythos and paranormal related artifacts. However, the agents only had a delivery address that was a PO box with an obviously fake name.

They began by visiting a local green box to see if there were any supplies. While they found a number of ... interesting ... items, few would help them out. They left wondering why someone would leave a full length human tongue wrapped in bubblewrap in a fridge. Some things agents are just not meant to know. I have to give my thanks to the Delta Green Green Box Generator - that site is amazing.

The post office was the agent's next stop. While the office was small, they found that it was extremely busy as it was short-handed. Through an amazing persuade roll, two of the agents convinced the person in charge they were from the USPIS and "were here to help". Given such a good roll, they got access to all of the information they wanted and quickly generated two leads.

The first was the person who the package was supposed to be delivered to, Benjamin Hale. The second was a postal worker, Harold, who had not been showing up, and who they found had an unusually high number of missing packages along his route.

While two of the agents cased out Hale's apartment, another called him and found him to be extremely irate that his package was missing. Through some sly investigative techniques, the agents deduced that while Hale was a cultist, he didn't appear to have the icon and that Harold may have taken it. Two agents then went to Harold's house to stake it out.

In the mean time, a plan was set into motion. Hale was telephoned and told that his package had been found and was in his PO box. In the PO box, they placed a fake note from Harold saying that he had the package and gave his address. Their plan was to have the Harold and Benjamin fight it out, and hopefully taking care of their problems on their own.

This was actually a brilliant move and one that I had never anticipated. I was impressed with the group at this point, but had also started to form my plan for what was about to happen.

After finding the note, Benjamin went back to his apartment. Two agents followed him and waited for him to leave. The agents then went up to his apartment and broke in. They botched the locksmith roll, so I still allowed them to open the door, but it was apparent that it had been broken into. This also triggered a neighbor calling the police.

The agents ransacked Hale's apartment and found a number of cultist-related artifacts they grabbed. They also noticed a place on a shelf where a statue had recently been, but was now missing. Had Hale taken it? What was its purpose? (Cue evil Keeper laugh here.)

Police sirens were heard approaching, so the two agents knew they had to leave. To "hide" any evidence, they broke open a gas line and lit a candle, barely making it out of the building before it exploded. At that point they received a text from the other agents that something bad was going down.

The agent at Harold's house (there were originally two, but one player had to leave) saw Hale arrive and proceed to the front door. He heard shouting, and decided to dial 911 to hopefully get either arrested or killed. Seconds later he heard gunfire as Hale started shooting into the house from the front door while Harold exchanged fire with a shotgun blast. Wounded, Hale moved to the driveway where he was shielded from any shotgun blasts, bent over and began to chant.

Soon a creature appeared from a statue that Hale had placed on the ground and burst through the front door. This was a formless spawn Hale had summoned to take care of his problem. Unfortunately for Hale, inside the house the formless spawn was met with something equally formidable and was wounded. Shortly after, Harold burst through the garage door in his truck, running Hale over and killing him.

The poor agent witnessing this then saw the formless spawn exit the house, and seeing the agent as the only person around, proceeded to move toward him. The agent was able to get into his car, but not before the formless spawn shattered the back window and proceeded to attempt to enter the car. As the agent sped through town, swerving to avoid any attacks, he rolled a 02 on his Drive Auto. He slammed on the breaks, did a J-turn, the rear-ended a phone pole, causing the formless spawn to get knocked off the car. The agent then hijacked another car and sped off in pursuit of Harold, leaving a number of dazed and confused cars to deal with the formless spawn on their own.

The agents quickly figured out that Harold was heading back to the post office when they got a call from the manager that Harold was there shooting everyone. By the time they got there, Harold had killed two workers and had begun to turn the shotgun on himself. One agent tried to talk him down while the other went to sneak behind him. Unfortunately, before they could prevent anything from happening, Harold began to vomit swampy water and choked to death.

One agent found a duffel bag with the Icon in it, while the other grabbed Harold's shotgun. The agent with the duffel bag ran out to the car, while the other started to leave. That agent quickly stopped when he saw something rise out of the water that Harold had spewed out. This was the Bolotianyk, a Russian swamp demon that had actually been imprisoned in the Icon.

The demon immediately attacked the agent as began to ran. The other two agents were waiting in the car outside as they saw the other agent running toward them, the demon following close behind. The demon landed a great hit on the agent, wounding him severely and taking him down to 1HP. The agent jumped onto the car and tried to hold on as they sped away, but failed his roll and fell off. Fortunately for him, due to some lucky rolls by his fellow agents, they were able to stop and opened fire on the demon. The demon was obliterated, and they sped off to deposit the Icon in the green box. (A shotgun blast, a glock and a magnum at point blank range (with an extreme success) does alot of damage.)

They later found out that the Icon, which they had never actually looked at, was blank and that due to a number of suspicious drowning deaths in the vicinity of the post office, they had never actually destroyed the demon. But that was for another team to deal with.

Overall, the game was a blast. One player ended up with 1HP, and all three were 1 SAN away from going indefinitely insane. When seeing the demon, one PC lost 8 SAN in one shot, but failed his INT roll (lucky for him).

This was my first time running Special Delivery, and I was really pleased with the results. Based on running it here, I'm not sure a team of more than 4 players would work well without throwing additional things at them. However, for 1-4 PCs, this is perfect. I have a number of ideas that I can throw in, and may expand it later on.

Until next time!!!

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