My last session was pretty epic. Our medic managed to chase down and tackle Viktoria Karhowl as she attempted to flee a conflict. The medic even stressed himself into a Trauma as he smashed her face against a rock to knock her out.
So now they have her as a prisoner. I even gave them a bonus +1 Morale for capturing a Lieutenant.
But obviously Blighter is either going to attempt to mount a rescue, or send in Lugos to permanently silence Karhowl so she doesn’t spill Blighter’s secrets. My question is: how would you handle this?
I’m uncomfortable making a special assault mission that happens in camp, but I also don’t know how to handle this. Just clocks also doesn’t seem right. I’m stumped.
I think making it a mission of some sort sounds best. Maybe do it like this: if the commander wants to spend Intel, do it as a Special Mission to maybe intercept Lugos on his way to the camp, or set up a deal to trade Karhowl for something. Offer some sweet rewards. And otherwise, of they don’t spend the Intel, do the assault on the camp.
Honestly, it sounds super fun
I’m just worried that with the fragility of NPC squads, it puts more than just a single squad at risk for the undead to carve through, or force PCs to absorb a lot of harm and stress just to protect them—more than a normal mission. If that makes sense.
Consider that there’s no need to “involve” the other NPC squads in the fight, necessarily. Just make the mission about protecting the prisoner, while the other squads and the Chosen protect the camp from the undead assault as they normally do when the other two squads are away on missions. And you don’t record camp injuries from these defensive measures and repelled attacks, as normal.
The “on-screen” action thus remains with the squad guarding the prisoner, while “off screen” the other squads are defending other parts of the camp or are glimpsed in various other background actions that don’t need to provide anything other than narrative color.
However, sometimes the Chosen or Commander does assign multiple squads to important missions – that’s even what happens in one of the missions in the book, and you could run it just as that mission: two squads and the Chosen defending the prisoner because of the very high mission importance. But if you’re not comfortable with this, don’t worry about it.
On the other hand, this is a game about a bleak war and a struggle against an implacable enemy: you could have the Specialists running around trying to protect all the squads, potentially suffering those huge Stress and Morale losses to underscore this point.
An undead assault on the camp could be played a bit like the Zora or Horned One"s initial missions, with a 10-clock ticking in the background. The squad you play would be either the one specifically guarding the prisoner, as greyhorm suggest, or the “reserve” squad being sent where the line is about to give in.
Or do the “Intercepting Lugos” as the secondary assault mission, while the primary mission would be something else. Maybe finding a ritual for “unbinding” Karhowl from Blighter and recruiting her as a top notch alchemist for the Legion, or escorting her to Sunstrider camp where the Horse Lady has vengeance on her mind, or whatever.