Second in the lineup of guest games, or tryouts, is Labyrinth Lord. I wanted to show Gutz, Nessime and The Warforged what the hobby was like originally; I thought it might ease them into Stars Without Number; and in honesty I have a hankering for the sort of simple dungeon crawl I used to play with my college friends in the 1970s.
The party consisted of two magic-users and a cleric, plus a couple of hired fighters, and I ran them through the sample adventure in the LL rule book, Den of the Morlock Shaman. Highlights:
The two magic-users combining their Ventriloquism and Sleep spells to take out three morlocks and set up two more to be silently eliminated by the fighters.
The cleric’s innate suspicion of treasure chests leading him to fashion a lever mechanism for opening a chest from a distance, thus evading the poison needle trap.
The complex trap laid for a carnivorous ape, involving an improvised tripwire, a slide through lamp oil, and a lot of stabbing. Perfectly, at least to my eye as GM, the butterfingered cleric didn’t manage to set the oil-soaked ape on fire until it was already dead.
The verdict? LL joins our stable of games. There was a consensus that the simple rules encouraged cunning plans, and that the immanence of death at 1st level made the players work harder for their successes and relish them more.
The problem we now have as a group is fitting everything in. With me wanting to run Savage Worlds, Labyrinth Lord and Stars Without Number, and my players wanting to run Shadowrun, Stars Without Number, and Mouse Guard, there’s a lot of pressure on the only gaming afternoon we can fit in each week. (Ironically, although the players asked for “a fantasy game with no guns” originally, and I went along with that despite my long history as a GM of SF RPGs, I note most of them want to run SF games…)
Anyway, it seems I need to limit myself to one campaign at a time; Shadows of Keron will reach a natural break point once the PCs arrive at Gis, so I might switch to a new game for a while at that point. There are many more adventures to be had in the Dominions, though, so I expect to return to them later.