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Gamerprinter
07-18-2009, 03:04 PM
A ryokan (country inn) is essentially a large farmhouse, near a main road, that has been converted into a country inn, with the addition of a number of 10 x 10 sleeping chambers with a sliding door to access. The floors are tatami mats, usually a floor sitting pillow sits within. A wardrobe with 3 shelves sit within with the two lower shelfs containing a rolled up futon bed, pillow and blankets on next shelf - empty shelf for a tenants personal goods.

This is a haunted location in the first adventure of The Gift, from my Kaidan introductory mini-adventure arc.

The party arrives at a typical country inn, is greeted by the hostess, shown their rooms, the location of the kitchen and employee only areas, as well as how to get to the "benjo" or toilet (essentially an attached outhouse.) The party is told that supper will be served at nightfall.

Once the party settles in, they meet the other guests and eventually head to the communal room where dinner is served. Once seated and their food lays before them, they notice that the noodles are really worms, the rabbit stew is trying to crawl out of its bowl, and an eel in the soup comes alive and begins swimming around in it. When the party looks up in shock, the entire Ryokan reveals itself as having been abandoned and rotting away for years, the entrances and window slides are boarded up from the outside.

The other guests are all yurei ghosts in various forms and attack the party.

Because the adventure uses maps, art and public domain art, I've attached a hand-drawn public domain image of a Japanese farmhouse side view... or what a typical ryokan looks like from the outside.

Fifty years ago, this ryokan was operated by a husband and wife. However, a beautiful woman guest was staying at the inn. In the month of her stay, the husband of the house had great lust for the woman guest. His jealous wife asks for the guest to leave, which she does. The husband in anger strikes his wife to the floor, while still unconscious he takes her body and entombs her alive in the cellar beneath the kitchen. After her screaming subsides and final death has come the husband takes to the road in search for the outcast guest. He finds her, invites her back, saying his wife is visiting family in the next province. Over the few days she is back, the guest begins to be accosted by an invisible assailant from poltergeist objects thrown, to eventually near choking event with invisible hands about her neck. Finally the wife's ghost appears and tell her what her beauty has cause. In remorse she commits suicide. She leaves a note which the authorities find, arrest and execute the husband. Now all the residents of the house are permanent ghostly fixtures there...

It is also believed some lesser yakuza used this place as a temporary hideout, escaping the authorities but were eventually killed by the yurei ghosts within, they too haunt the ryokan!

The location features 6 yurei ghosts of varying HD, powers and defenses.

Enjoy!

GP

PS: I'm now confronting issues in differences in how I create adventures, the publishers more general method and the Australian writers "hand-hold" to every event or occurance - not sure if a good compromise can be reached between our varying styles.

Steel General
07-19-2009, 10:09 AM
That's a nice little map GP!

Love the floor board texture...

Ghostman
07-19-2009, 10:28 AM
Good work with the map. Do you think it's right that the walls and posts seem to cast shadow on all directions around them? That gives the impression of light coming from directly above, which is kind of in contrast with their beveling that shows the left & up corners brighter and the right & down corners darker.

The background flavour of the place is great, but it seems pretty wasteful if all one is to get from the inn is a straight forward combat encounter. I'd be tempted to keep up the illusion through the supper and let the player characters settle down for the night. Then they could be woken up and lured to the cellar by the ghost of the innkeeper's wife, or the innkeeper's ghost might lust after any female PCs, etc. Unwitting characters might end up being played as pawns in vengeful plots of these ghosts before the horror is exposed to them.

Gamerprinter
07-19-2009, 01:39 PM
Well consider there's a roof and no definitely light source, except the open fireplace in the center of the communal room. Halo shadows work well for VT purposes, instead of directional shadows, as light source changes and shadowing changes. Placing shadows here simply amplify where the walls are and and which objects are a part of the floor and which are above it.

Depending on my needs, I use both directional and halo shadows.

So I see no problem with using a halo shadow for the interior.

GP

Gandwarf
07-20-2009, 07:10 AM
Hey Gamerprinter,

Just wanted to let you know it's nice to see you posting your progress on the Kaidan setting. It's a good way to get some insight into the process of creating such a setting. Your stories are interesting to read and the art is great. Thanks so far!

Gamerprinter
07-21-2009, 12:34 AM
The background flavour of the place is great, but it seems pretty wasteful if all one is to get from the inn is a straight forward combat encounter. I'd be tempted to keep up the illusion through the supper and let the player characters settle down for the night. Then they could be woken up and lured to the cellar by the ghost of the innkeeper's wife, or the innkeeper's ghost might lust after any female PCs, etc. Unwitting characters might end up being played as pawns in vengeful plots of these ghosts before the horror is exposed to them.

Actually, as I mention in my Post Script, I'm having difficulty with the publisher's writing style/adventure format, that I will have to do some major changes to make this work. He's more a freeform/sand box RPG designer. For an Asian Horror setting or any dark setting, the story is a major part of flavor and to induce horror into the game - so story-telling is necessary.

Originally I wanted to "go into the night" rather than starting the melee at dinner time, as you suggest. Actually, your thoughts here regarding being pawns of the ghost's own agendas coincides with my thinking exactly.

I guess I was trying to compromise with the publisher's direction, but I think its better to carry the plot further and make this encounter much more a major aspect doing the "whole story" - the location really works well for that.

Since I'm planning a major rewrite of the publisher's first draft anyway, I'm might as well extend this encounter to a more complete ghost story in the process to make a better product.

Good ideas!

GP