SAW#12 Out on RPGNow

The last adventure in the first volume of Sidetrek Adventure Weekly hit the virtual stands. I wrote it in 3 days, with some help from Greg Oppedisano (the line manager) and the always solid, sounding-board advice of my friends/fellow authors, Tim Hitchcock and Rone Barton. Very exciting. I really enjoy the cover art. Nothing like having something you only saw in your head brought to life!

I'm particularly pleased with a chase mechanic I invented to simplify outrunning an avalanche, but given a chance, I'd make some changes. The publisher plans to re-release with them, but I just can't wait. So if I had it to do again, I'd change these entries (changes in italics):

Hit By the Bury Zone
If the bury zone hits players, they lose maneuverability until the avalanche hurtles them over the cliff. While in the bury zone they suffer its effects each minute (DMG pg90). Every other round PCs are in the Bury Zone, they may make a Climb Check (DC20) to struggle through to the slide zone, take damage and be catapulted out in front of the avalanche (+2 Chase Points). Once thrown over the cliff, the unfortunate player has two rounds to escape the falling snow and rocks or be buried beneath the avalanche, under very cold water. Being buried means the player is immobilized by 100’ of ice and snow in all directions (digging and under water spell casting are still possible). The drowning rules (DMG pg 304) apply, as do the effects of very cold water (DMG pg 304). The rapids dissipate the ice and snow of the avalanche at the rate of 20’ per round. At the top of the 6th round after being buried, the rapids carry buried players to the surface without requiring a Swim check. After surfacing, Swim checks are required for fast-moving water as normal.

Hit By the Slide Zone
We use a modified version of the avalanche rules (DMG pg90). If the Slide Zone hits a player (when, at the start of any give round, the avalanche slide zone Chase Points equal or exceed a player’s Chase Points), that player must make a Reflex Save (DC 15 for half damage) or take 3d6 bludgeoning damage from rocks and ice. They must also make a DC 7 Balance check or Wipeout (-1 Chase Points). However, unlike the rule in the DMG, a failed save does not result in burial, just the Wipeout penalty. All PCs hit by the Slide Zone are picked up and thrown forward, gaining +2 Chase Points.

If players Wipeout, they lose 1 chase point, as if spending one round recovering and resuming their pell-mell descent. After a Wipeout, players may choose any of the terrain types for their next move, regardless of which terrain type caused the Wipeout.

If anyone out there in cyber land gives this a whirl, I'd love to hear about it!

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