- Fantasy League
[inspired by the House Of 1000 Nightmares game Omar ran on Saving Throw’s SVSvsALZ 24 hour charity stream]
Mmmmmm yes hello adventurers and heroes, I am Jenkins, the groundskeeper, emphasis on the ground, and I need your help. You see, a very important artifact has been hidden away in this, how should I say... monster manor? It’s a mysterious house filled with monsters, nightmares and all sorts of personal horrors. But inside is something of much personal value. Will you brave creatures retrieve the crystal heart necklace for me? Will you go room to room, face the frights and make your way to the attic? Oh you will? Gooooooooood. Let me know how it goes! Jenkins out.
The idea behind this game is so easy that it’s scary. The team, guided by a trusty GM, will build a haunted house using room tiles. These can be index cards or just bits of paper, but if you want to be really environmentally friendly snag a chalkboard or dry erase surface so you can play the game multiple times! Each tile will have a challenge and a winnable item. If the team can best the challenge in the room tile, they will receive the item. Items can be used to best other challenges throughout the night and by the time you all reach the attic, your team will have gone through an experience unlike any other.
Right off the bat, you should know that this game is more about the cooperative storytelling of a group rather than competition. It’s more of a party game than a stats- heavy mission. That said, let’s get to it.
Real quick, you can be anything. Anything! A preening bird looking for love, a Christmas elf running away from her past, a... crown... guy... anything! Each character will be decided by the player and are only tied to one two stats: speed and carry. Speed determines how many rooms a character can move through per turn. Carry is how many objects a character can take with them. These stats can be between 1 and 4 but both stats put together cannot exceed a value of 6. Example: if your speed is 4, your carry has to be 2. If your carry is 3, your speed cannot be above 3.
If you have too many items for your carry, you can drop an item in a room and someone else can pick it up or you can come back for it if you need it!
Beforehand, either separately as the GM or as a group, come up with a list of 20 things to inspire the rooms. These can be 20 horror movies, 20 monsters from mythology, 20 items you’d find at a grocery store, anything! [there is an attached example]
As you enter the manor, roll a d20 and look at your list of things. The number you rolled is the inspiration for your room. You as a group will describe the group and then you as a group can decide the challenge or the GM can decide the challenge.
Players can either face the challenge and win an item or they can just run from the room into another room! If that happens, just roll a d20 for the next room, no penalty for the players. You can totally run from room to room if you want! You just wont get items.
Challenges are totally up to you wonderful folks. If you roll a “Psycho” room, for example, and there’s a guy named Norm trying to sell you his mother’s famous showers, you all could fight him with whatever you have or you could try to convince him to write some Mother’s Day cards with you all.
NON-ITEM ATTACKS like talking someone out of something, or cleaning something, or reading something, or making a dinner for a ghost, those are all player d20 rolls v GM d20 rolls. Whoever has the higher roll succeeds.
ITEM ATTACKS are a tad more complicated. If a player wants to use an item against a challenge, the GM will come up with a difficulty number by rolling a d20 (I know, 5e and Pathfinder peeps will be like “isn’t that a bit low?” yeah it’s a fun Halloween game) and, as you’ll see below, items have an attack value determined by a d6. The players roll against the challenge (no initiative rolls) and then the challenge itself gets to roll a d20 as an attack back against the players. If the roll is higher than 15, one of the players loses an item that they are carrying. The group can decide who loses what so the collaborative feel continues through the game. So, just to recap, roll a d20 for challenge difficulty, players all get one attack, challenge rolls and if the roll is higher than 15, someone loses an item. Then the players attack again.
Each defeated challenge results in an item! These can be determined by the group or just the GM. Anyone can pick up this item, and with carry stats, it makes sense to load up the whole team. Each item does one specific thing an infinite amount of times. So, if it’s an illuminating snow globe called Rosebud, it can just glow, but it can glow for as many uses as you need. Determining an item’s attack value is a bit complicated.
When a player gets an item, the player rolls a d6. The results determine which dice is used when the attack is made.
If you roll a 1: it’s a d4 item
If you roll a 2: it’s a d6 item
If you roll a 3: it’s a d8 item
If you roll a 4: it’s a d10 item
If you roll a 5: it’s a d12 item
If you roll a 6: it’s a d20 item
Just like in the show, when you use an item, you roll the allocated die and your roll chips away at the challenge “health” that was determined at the start with a d20 roll.
You get to decide the rolls you stumble into! Below is an example list of 20 room inspirations but feel free to, at the start of the game, pool together a list with everyone involved so it truly is a Monster Manor of your making!
1. eerie clockmaker’s studio
2. a mad science doctor’s office
3. the boiler room with steam ghosts
4. a dining room that keeps flipping over 5. the foggy gardens
6. the parlor with dancing spirits
7. the guest room with moving paintings 8. a study filled with enchanted items
9. a flooded basement
10. a cemetery that’s... scary
11. a map room that connects the other rooms 12. a room with bars on the windows
13. an eerily silent aquarium
14. a music room with “live music”
15. a bathroom with three shells
16. a storage room of exotic fares 17. a library where books come to life 18. an underground passageway
19. a barn with stacks of hay
20. the attic
The goal of this game is to have fun and be creative so the parameters are up to you! You can play through all 20 rooms, the last one being the attic, or you can set a timer and at the end of your time, the room you’re in is the attic, or you can come up with some other limit that works best for you! But when you arrive at the attic at the end of the game, have everyone roll a d20. The highest roll is the one who touches the necklace first. This person must tell a backstory about how their character is tied to this necklace. And then everyone else has to go “oooooh” and feel a lot of feelings, just as the GM has Jenkins arrive to ask how everything went.
this week’s episode the game!
If you have any questions, use #ThankYouForQuesting on Twitter or send us a message on the show website!
We hope you have a truly wonderful Halloween and a truly wonderful year. Go on all the adventures, make all of the friends, and keep questing.
- Thank You For Questing crew