The Voyage of The Acceptance

The Voyage of The Acceptance

A playtest voyage for The Shrike game engine. You begin with four crew members and six gold. Sketch a map of your skyship. Divide the deck into three piles: spades, hearts and diamonds together, and clubs. Shuffle each pile individually. Pick a card at a time, first spades, then the red cards, then clubs. When you draw the King of Clubs, reshuffle the deck, and draw three final cards.

Chapter One

Ace ? : A few days ago you spotted a notorious skyship. Why is it famous? What is its name? Is she The Gilded Glider, El Impoluto, The Rusty Luck, The Rage, The Shrike, or something else? When you have decided, take +1 GUILE, and draw the next card.

Or Ace ? : One of your crew is not all they seem. Who? Why? When you have decided, take +1 GUILE, and draw the next card.

2 ? : How does your skyship move? Is it buoyed by balloons and bladders, equipped with a full set of sails, powered by crystals, or is it propelled by some other principle? When you have decided, take +1 TECH, and draw the next card.

Or 2 ? : For a vessel of its class, The Acceptance has some unusual features. What is its most distinctive feature? E.g. a revenant eater, a ceramics kiln, a red dragon countermeasures suite, a forge, or something else? When you have augmented your ship map, take +1 TECH, and draw the next card.

3 ? : Tomorrow you are entering a new area. There are disturbing legends about it. What do they say? After you have talked about it, take +1 SPIRIT.

Or 3 ? : Two crew members are definitely flirting. After you have talked about it, take +1 STEEL.

4 ? : BATTLE. Burn 1 STEEL to defend yourself against the Splinterwaif Patrol. The Splinterwaif Patrol has the upper hand, till your clever tactics turn the tide. How? Take +1 TECH. Or flee the Splinterwaif Patrol. Skip the next card.

Or 4 ? : BATTLE. The Devil's Bee is a Urzulan Petrel-class snekkja, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an everyday act of war, putting you in your place, an assassination, or something else? Burn 3 GUILE and 5 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Devil's Bee, and take +6 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

5 ? : DISCUSSION. Someone proposes a topic. For example: How are we getting on as a group? Or, Small eerie events seem to have been happening. Surely there's some rational explanation? Or, The First Mate claims we have a spy in our midst. Can it be true? Go round in a circle, with each crew member briefly stating their feelings. One or two sentences should be enough. When everybody has been heard, take +1 SPIRIT.

Or 5 ? : What kind of weapons does The Acceptance carry? E.g. bomb hatches and powder kegs, a holy bombard, a high pressure water catapult, some other weapons system, or perhaps no weapons at all? Update the ship map.

6 ? : Someone on board is injured. In what way? After you have told this part of the story, take +1 SPIRIT.

Or 6 ? : You are followed for some miles by a creature. Do you know what it is? Is it dangerous? After you have told this part of the story, take +1 STEEL.

7 ? : NEWCOMER. Arabella arrives aboard The Acceptance. How? Who is she? Does she adopt a role, e.g. Captain, First Mate, Tactical Officer, Engineer, Doctor, Aviator, or maybe something else? Add Arabella to the ship map, and adjust the roles aboard The Acceptance accordingly. Arabella also comes tagged with +1 STEEL.

Or 7 ? : PROJECT. Burn 2 GOLD to start improving some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build and what resource it will increase. Then add to your drawing of the ship, and place a die on the drawing to keep track of progress. For this project, the die starts at 4. Each turn it counts down by one, and when it reaches zero you may take +4 in your chosen resource.

8 ? : Subplot A episode 1. Take +1 TECH.

Or 8 ? : Mini call to adventure. Take +1 STEEL.

9 ? : A problem of some kind. Burn 1 TECH to engineer a solution. What do you come up with? Take +2 STEEL.

Or 9 ? : A problem of some kind. Burn 1 SPIRIT to use some kind of magic. What is it? How does it help? Take +2 GUILE or +4 GOLD.

10 ? : Subplot B episode 1. Take +1 SPIRIT.

Or 10 ? : Mini call to adventure. Take +1 GUILE.

Jack ? : BATTLE. You are too late. El Impoluto is falling from the sky, its topsail trailing in flames. The Splinterwaif gunboat circles back round to pick off survivors. Burn 2 STEEL to drive off the Splinterwaif gunboat. NEWCOMER. In the wreckage, you discover one survivor. Upon regaining consciousness, Obasie begs you to take her to a city in the north called the Noneones. Add Obasie to your ship map as Purser, or as something else. Obasie comes tagged with +1 STEEL and +1 SPIRIT. Take +2 GOLD.

Or Jack ? : Major call to adventure. Take +1 STEEL.

Queen ? : BATTLE. Burn 1 STEEL to ward off the Bone Dragon. The Bone Dragon is overwhelming you at first, but you get a lucky break. What is it? Take +1 SPIRIT. Or flee the Bone Dragon. Skip the next card.

Or Queen ? : BATTLE. The Heavens' Bird of Paradise is a Ogre Endless-class patrol pinnace, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an everyday act of war, pure senseless violence, seemingly a drunken assault, or something else? Burn 2 GUILE and 4 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Heavens' Bird of Paradise, and take +4 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion. Sometimes the only thing we need to do is survive.

King ? : Magic Friends spreads on the horizon. Here in Magic Friends, the gildenhuis of the Worshipful Company of Alchemists, Etherealists and Workshoppists is said to lie. It is an ornate, somewhat dilapidated palace. They are in dire need in Magic Friends of ivory, aqua fortis, and ethanol. If you are carrying any of this CARGO, you may sell it for four times what you paid, or gift it to take +6 SPIRIT and +2 GUILE. What brings you here? If you wish, burn 2 GOLD to take +1 in any resource.

Or King ? : Ragged Rainbow hovers on the horizon. Here in Ragged Rainbow, the only thing that is forbidden is to forbid. Do you explore? What is it like? What happens? If you wish, burn 1 GUILE to spy on their set-up and take +2 TECH.

Chapter Two

Ace ? : The city of Mianyuan hovers on the horizon. Here in the city of Mianyuan, money was long ago abolished in most areas of life, although some gold is still set aside for purposes of foreign trade. Do you explore? What is it like? What happens? TRADING POST. While you are docked in Mianyuan, you may sell any CARGO you are carrying. Sell for twice whatever you paid. If your crew has a Bursar, Merchant, or Steward aboard, they can sell your goods for triple whatever you paid. : Tension is simmering between the Navigator and the First Mate. Why? After you have told this part of the story, take +1 STEEL.

Or Ace ? : A mysterious city appears on the horizon. Upon arrival, you learn that this is Brukken Mar. It seems that in Brukken Mar, the Dust with Faces facilitates the making of micro-contracts. Someone asks for your help. What do you do? SHIPYARD. While you are docked in Brukken Mar, you may burn as much GOLD as you like to fix up the ship. For every GOLD spent, reduce DAMAGE to The Acceptance by 1.

2 ? : DISCUSSION. Someone propose a topic to discuss. Everyone can briefly weigh in once. Afterwards, take either +1 SPIRIT or +1 GUILE.

Or 2 ? : A shimmering city appears on the horizon. Upon arrival, you learn that this is the Vine. It seems that in the Vine, no two animals are even remotely similar. Even if you have arrived by accident, perhaps there is something here that you've been seeking? SHIPYARD. While you are docked in the Vine, you may burn as much GOLD as you like to fix up the ship. For every GOLD spent, reduce DAMAGE to The Acceptance by 1.

3 ? : A shimmering city appears on the horizon. Upon arrival, you learn that this is the great city of Warmth. It seems that in the great city of Warmth, there is no gender, but there is something like it. Do you investigate? When you eventually set off again, take +1 SPIRIT.

Or 3 ? : The Grammar of Tyrelium spreads on the horizon. Here in the Grammar of Tyrelium, special plants take the place of mathematics. Is the city as you expected? Why or why not? SHIPYARD. While you are docked in the Grammar of Tyrelium, you may install a hydraulic portal to take +2 TECH, +2 STEEL, +2 GUILE, for a price of 10 GOLD, or a curse-casting net to take +5 TECH, +5 STEEL, +5 GUILE at a price of 25 GOLD. Or sell any enchanted musket, goggles, gloves, gauntlets, buckler, belt, boots, hat, shirt, trousers, gown, jacket, or cloak for 7 GOLD.

4 ? : ARTIFACT. Buried in the sand is a useful piece of equipment. You bring it on board. Is it a hydraulic ladder, a shield generator, a set of decoy buoys, a cursed shield, or something else? Sketch it on your ship map. At any time you may repair and install it by burning 4 TECH. Once it is installed, take +3 STEEL and +3 GUILE. Alternatively, you may sell it at any SHIPYARD or TRADING POST for 2 GOLD.

Or 4 ? : The city of the Elfborn raises its towers on the horizon. Here in the city of the Elfborn, every act does double duty: it is both itself, and a step in a vast calculation. What brings you here? TRADING POST. While you are docked in the Elfborn, you may sell any CARGO you are carrying. Sell for twice whatever you paid. If your crew has a Bursar, Merchant, or Steward aboard, they can sell your goods for triple whatever you paid.

5 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee the flying Warlock and their minions. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 7 STEEL to win the battle and take +3 TECH and +3 GUILE. Or evade the encounter: take 1 DAMAGE and skip the next card.

Or 5 ? : DISCUSSION. How is the voyage going? Where have you been, where are you headed, where are you now? Someone propose a specific topic to discuss. Take turns weighing in once, in one or two sentences. Afterwards, take either +1 SPIRIT or +1 GUILE.

6 ? : BATTLE. The Jemble Barb is a Urzulan Talon-class galley, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an everyday act of war, putting you in your place, a kidnapping attempt, or something else? Burn 4 GUILE and 7 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Jemble Barb, and take +7 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or 6 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee the Hornwing Bandersnatch. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 6 GUILE to win the battle and take +3 SPIRIT and +3 STEEL. If you try to flee, you are pursued. In the ensuing fight, one of your crew is lost overboard. Remove them from the ship map. Any ongoing projects are also destroyed completely. Also take 1 DAMAGE to the ship.

7 ? : ARTIFACT. Buried in the sand is a useful piece of equipment. You bring it on board. Is it a sonic ram, a prismatic net, a mechanical oracle, hull pressure modulator, or something else? Sketch it on your ship map. At any time you may repair and install it by burning 4 TECH. Once it is installed, take +3 STEEL and +3 GUILE. Alternatively, you may sell it at any SHIPYARD or TRADING POST for 2 GOLD.

Or 7 ? : An uncharted city appears on the horizon. Upon arrival, you learn that this is Clarault. It seems that in Clarault, any powerful emotion risks activating a Chaos Splinter. Someone asks for your help. What do you do? SHIPYARD. While you are docked in Clarault, you may burn as much GOLD as you like to fix up the ship. For every GOLD spent, reduce DAMAGE to The Acceptance by 1.

8 ? : The Cot of Verity shimmers on the horizon. Here in the Cot of Verity, everyone has two forms, and can shift between them effortlessly. Do you disembark? What do you find? SHIPYARD. While you are docked in the Cot of Verity, you may install a sentient clockwork bear automaton to take +2 TECH, +2 STEEL, +2 GUILE, for a price of 10 GOLD, or a molten submersible to take +5 TECH, +5 STEEL, +5 GUILE at a price of 25 GOLD. Or sell any enchanted musket, goggles, gloves, gauntlets, buckler, belt, boots, hat, shirt, trousers, gown, jacket, or cloak for 7 GOLD.

Or 8 ? : ARTIFACT. Buried in the sand you find a Syringe of Made Things. Update your ship map. Is the Purser part of your crew? If so, they know what must be done to awaken the artifact. What must be done? Once the artifact is awakened, take +6 TECH, tagged to a crew member of your choosing. If you later sell or relinquish this relic, discard the 6 TECH.

9 ? : BATTLE. The Flensed Badger is a Urzulan Wyvern-class gunner, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an ambush, pure senseless violence, gladiatorial combat, or something else? Burn 2 GUILE and 8 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Flensed Badger, and take +6 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or 9 ? : BATTLE. The Meretricious Butterfly is a Urzulan Scarletscale-class cutter, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an act of piracy, a mission of liberation, a blockade, or something else? Burn 4 GUILE and 10 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Meretricious Butterfly, and take +8 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

10 ? : NEWCOMER. Obasie arrives aboard The Acceptance. How? Do they adopt a role: Tactical Officer, Aviator, Scientist, or something else? They bring +2 SPIRIT and +1 GOLD. Add them to your ship map.

Or 10 ? : PROJECT. You have a little time to start something new. If you wish, burn 5 SPIRIT to improve some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build and what resource it will increase. Roll a die to see how many turns the project will take to complete. Use the die to keep track of progress. When it completes, take +7 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 3 points of DAMAGE.

Jack ? : NEWCOMER. Aaron arrives aboard The Acceptance. How? Do they adopt a role: Tactical Officer, Doctor, Patterner, or something else? They bring +2 GUILE and +1 TECH. Add them to your ship map.

Or Jack ? : PROJECT. Burn 1 TECH and 1 SPIRIT to start improving some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build, enhance, or repair. After 5 days, the project will complete, and you may take +8 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 8 points of damage.

Queen ? : The skyship is far from adequately equipped. What tool(s) are you lacking? When you have told this part of the story, take +2 SPIRIT.

Or Queen ? : PROJECT. You have a little time to start something new. If you wish, burn 8 GOLD to improve some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build and what resource it will increase. Roll a die to see how many turns the project will take to complete. Use the die to keep track of progress. When the project completes take +7 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 2 points of DAMAGE.

King ? A mysterious city appears on the horizon. Upon arrival, you learn that this is the town of Singing Deeps. It seems that in the town of Singing Deeps, all things are held in common, and their use is governed by the people as a whole. As you approach, someone in your crew grows angry. Who? In what way? Do you investigate? When you eventually set off again, take +1 STEEL.

Or King ? : PROJECT. Burn 2 TECH and 1 GUILE to conduct repairs or enhancements to the skyship. Decide what you want to do, and what resource it will impact. After 6 days, the project will complete, and you may take +5 in your chosen resource.

Ace ? : There is a fire aboard the ship. Fortunately it's not too serious. How did it start? What was damaged or destroyed?

Or Ace ? : Tomorrow you are entering a new area. There are disturbing legends about it. What do they say?

2 ? : BATTLE. The Dallying Arcadia is a Bearborn Flaming Pearl-class pinnace, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an ambush, licensed privateering under a letter of marque, seemingly a drunken assault, or something else? Burn 3 GUILE and 7 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Dallying Arcadia, and take +7 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or 2 ? : BATTLE. The Intransigent Bad Idea is a Bearborn Bride-class needleship, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this a case of mistaken identity, a betrayal, seemingly a drunken assault, or something else? Burn 4 GUILE and 8 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Intransigent Bad Idea, and take +8 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

3 ? : The Engineer does a Tarot reading for the First Mate. What do the cards say?

Or 3 ? : The Engineer does a Tarot reading for the First Mate. What do the cards say?

4 ? : Chapter Two Main Plot. Take +2 in a resource of your choosing.

Or 4 ? : The city of As a Treat raises its towers on the horizon. You have heard that in As a Treat everyone is ruled by a cluster of intelligent castles in geosynchronous orbit. Why have you come here? What happens next? SHIPYARD. While you are docked in As a Treat, you may burn as much GOLD as you like to fix up the ship. For every GOLD spent, reduce DAMAGE to The Acceptance by 1.

5 ? : Chapter Two Subplot A. If you wish, transfer up to 4 resource points from one resource to another. NEWCOMER. Yu Yan is willing to join your crew. Do they adopt a role, e.g. Aviator, Scientist, Purser, Doctor, or something else? They bring +2 of a resource of your choosing.

Or 5 ? : buried in the sand is a piece of machinery. What was it originally? Then what was it? What might it be useful for next?

6 ? : Chapter Two Subplot B. If you wish, transfer up to 4 resource points from one resource to another.

Or 6 ? : buried in the sand is a piece of machinery. What was it originally? Then what was it? What might it be useful for next?

7 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee the swarm of Golden Mummies. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 8 TECH to win the battle and take +4 STEEL and +4 GUILE. Or evade the encounter: take 1 DAMAGE and skip the next card.

Or 7 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee the pack of Splinterwaif Raiders. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 6 STEEL to win the battle and take +3 GUILE and +3 TECH. If The Acceptance is equipped with a sonic ram and you can think of a way to use it now, take +3 of any resource before the battle begins. If you try to flee, you are pursued. In the ensuing fight, one of your crew is lost overboard. Remove them from the ship map. Any ongoing projects are also destroyed completely. Also take 1 DAMAGE to the ship.

8 ? : ARTIFACT. Buried in the sand you find a Necklace of Kindness. Update your ship map. Is the Patterner part of your crew? If so, they know what must be done to awaken the artifact. What must be done? Once the artifact is awakened, take +6 STEEL, tagged to a crew member of your choosing. If you later sell or relinquish this relic, discard the 6 STEEL.

Or 8 ? : The Barony of Stonemore gradually coalesces on the horizon. The Navigator knows of it. Apparently, in the Barony of Stonemore, Rumblepuzzlers have all but overrun the town, silent shaggy machines who present their conundrums to passers-by pleadingly, like puppies with thorns in their paws. Are you looking for something here? What do you learn? SHIPYARD. While you are docked in the Barony of Stonemore, you may burn as much GOLD as you like to fix up the ship. For every GOLD spent, reduce DAMAGE to The Acceptance by 1.

9 ? : BATTLE. The Cosmic Barbet is a Urzulan Talon-class galley, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an everyday act of war, a homicidal temper tantrum, a blockade, or something else? Burn 4 GUILE and 9 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Cosmic Barbet, and take +7 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or 9 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee a pack of flight-augmented Splinterwaif attackers. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 8 TECH to win the battle and take +4 SPIRIT and +4 STEEL. If The Acceptance is equipped with a rainbow arm and you can think of a way to use it now, take +3 of any resource before the battle begins. If you try to flee, you are pursued. In the ensuing fight, one of your crew is lost overboard. Remove them from the ship map. Any ongoing projects are also destroyed completely. Also take 1 DAMAGE to the ship.

10 ? : ARTIFACT. Buried in the sand you find Goggles of Recalibration. Update your ship map. Do you have a Patterner in your crew? If so, they know what must be done to awaken the artifact. What must be done? Once the artifact is awakened, take +6 GUILE, tagged to the Patterner.

Or 10 ? : PROJECT. Burn 2 TECH and 2 SPIRIT to start improving some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build and what resource it will increase. After 6 days, the project will complete, and you may take +10 in your chosen resource.

Jack ? : NEWCOMER. Yu Yan arrives aboard The Acceptance. How? Who? Does the newcomer adopt a role, e.g. Doctor, Patterner, Scientist, Purser, or something else? They bring +2 GOLD and +1 SPIRIT. Add them to your ship map.

Or Jack ? : PROJECT. Burn 1 GOLD and 3 SPIRIT to start improving some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build, enhance, or repair. After 5 days, the project will complete, and you may take +10 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 5 points of damage.

Queen ? : DISCUSSION. Someone raises an issue. Go around in a circle, each weighing in briefly in 1-2 sentences. When this part of the story is complete, you may take +1 SPIRIT.

Or Queen ? : PROJECT. Burn 3 GOLD and 1 GUILE to conduct repairs or improvements to the skyship. Decide what you want to do, and what resource it will impact. After 6 days, your project will complete, and you may take +5 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 5 points of damage.

King ? : BATTLE. The Bat is a Urzulan Scythe-class dragonclad, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an act of piracy, part of a revolution, a territorial skirmish, or something else? Burn 1 TECH and 13 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Bat, and take +10 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or King ? : BATTLE. The Growling Bubble is a Urzulan Nephele-class skeid, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this a case of mistaken identity, a homicidal temper tantrum, a sudden unprovoked attack, or something else? Burn 2 TECH and 15 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Growling Bubble, and take +12 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Chapter Three

Ace ? : Someone has a dark secret. Is it the Captain, the Tactical Officer, the Doctor, or someone else? What are they hiding? Why can't they just say?

Or Ace ? : You are followed for some miles by a creature. Do you know what it is? Is it dangerous?

2 ? : BATTLE. The Heavenspun Armadillo is a Bearborn Bride-class needleship, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an ambush, a prearranged duel, an assassination, or something else? Burn 2 GUILE and 5 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Heavenspun Armadillo, and take +5 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or 2 ? : BATTLE. The Execrable Body Image is a Urzulan Fly-class knarr, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an ambush, licensed privateering under a letter of marque, a territorial skirmish, or something else? Burn 4 GUILE and 9 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Execrable Body Image, and take +7 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

3 ? : Drifting over the sea, you spot something marvelous among the waves. What is it?

Or 3 ? : buried in the sand is a piece of machinery. What was it originally? Then what was it? What might it be useful for next?

4 ? : PROJECT. You have a little time to start something new. If you wish, burn 5 SPIRIT to improve some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build and what resource it will increase. Roll a die to see how many turns the project will take to complete. Use the die to keep track of progress. When it completes, take +7 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 3 points of DAMAGE.

Or 4 ? : The city of Plenty looms on the horizon. You have heard that in Plenty barely comprehensible things take the place of government. But the stories that are told about this place aren't quite true. In what ways are they misleading? When you eventually set off again, take +1 TECH.

5 ? : Chapter Three Subplot A. If you wish, transfer up to 4 resource points from one resource to another.

Or 5 ? : Chapter Three Main Plot. Take +2 in a resource of your choosing.

6 ? : Chapter Three Subplot A. If you wish, transfer up to 4 resource points from one resource to another.

Or 6 ? : You discover the missing half of something. What is it?

7 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee a pack of glider-equipped Splinterwaif attackers. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 5 STEEL to win the battle and take +2 SPIRIT and +2 TECH. Or evade the encounter: take 1 DAMAGE and skip the next card.

Or 7 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee the Winged Kraken. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 9 SPIRIT to win the battle and take +4 TECH and +4 STEEL. If you try to flee, you are pursued. In the ensuing fight, one of your crew is lost overboard. Remove them from the ship map. Any ongoing projects are also destroyed completely. Also take 1 DAMAGE to the ship.

8 ? : BATTLE. The Blobby Bumblebee is a Urzulan Fly-class knarr, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an everyday act of war, a homicidal temper tantrum, trial by combat, or something else? Burn 4 GUILE and 9 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Blobby Bumblebee, and take +8 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or 8 ? : BATTLE. The Dreadful Barbastelle is a Ogre Host-class galleass, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an act of piracy, putting you in your place, the inexorable result of managerial processes, or something else? Burn 3 TECH and 11 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Dreadful Barbastelle, and take +9 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

9 ? : BATTLE. The Coiled Anxiety is a Urzulan Scarletscale-class cutter, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an ambush, licensed privateering under a letter of marque, a territorial skirmish, or something else? Burn 2 GUILE and 8 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Coiled Anxiety, and take +6 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or 9 ? : BATTLE. Fight or flee a pack of flight-augmented Splinterwaif attackers. Why is this happening? Who attacked first? With what motives? How do you appear to one another? Burn 8 GUILE to win the battle and take +4 TECH and +4 STEEL. If The Acceptance is equipped with a transluscent keel and you can think of a way to use it now, take +3 of any resource before the battle begins. If you try to flee, you are pursued. In the ensuing fight, one of your crew is lost overboard. Remove them from the ship map. Any ongoing projects are also destroyed completely. Also take 1 DAMAGE to the ship.

10 ? : ARTIFACT. Buried in the sand you find a Pendant of Wrathworking. Update your ship map. Do you have a Patterner in your crew? If so, they know what must be done to awaken the artifact. What must be done? Once the artifact is awakened, take +6 TECH, tagged to the Patterner.

Or 10 ? : PROJECT. Burn 2 TECH and 2 SPIRIT to start improving some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build and what resource it will increase. After 6 days, the project will complete, and you may take +10 in your chosen resource.

Jack ? : NEWCOMER. Sienna arrives aboard The Acceptance. How? Who? Does the newcomer adopt a role, e.g. Doctor, Patterner, Scientist, Purser, or something else? They bring +2 STEEL and +1 GOLD. Add them to your ship map.

Or Jack ? : PROJECT. Burn 1 GOLD and 3 SPIRIT to start improving some aspect of the skyship. Decide what you want to build, enhance, or repair. After 5 days, the project will complete, and you may take +10 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 5 points of damage.

Queen ? : DISCUSSION. Someone raises an issue. Go around in a circle, each weighing in briefly in 1-2 sentences. When this part of the story is complete, you may take +1 SPIRIT.

Or Queen ? : PROJECT. Burn 3 GOLD and 1 GUILE to conduct repairs or improvements to the skyship. Decide what you want to do, and what resource it will impact. After 6 days, your project will complete, and you may take +5 in your chosen resource, or repair up to 5 points of damage.

King ? : BATTLE. The Golden Albatross is a Urzulan Scythe-class dragonclad, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an everyday act of war, a prearranged duel, a territorial skirmish, or something else? Burn 2 TECH and 14 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Golden Albatross, and take +9 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Or King ? : BATTLE. The Dread Budgie is a Ogre Host-class galleass, bearing down with weapons hot. Is this an act of piracy, a betrayal, a savage and inexplicable assault, or something else? Burn 1 TECH and 16 STEEL to destroy, capture, or repel The Dread Budgie, and take +10 GOLD. Or, flee the hostile skyship. Take 2 damage, and reset any active projects to six days until completion.

Chapter Four

Take a moment to think back over all you've seen and done. Then talk about what your final challenge will be. Draw three cards to see if you can overcome it.

Spades mean burn TECH.

Clubs mean burn STEEL.

Diamonds mean burn GUILE.

Hearts mean burn SPIRIT.

Aces can be high or low as you choose. Court cards count as 10. As usual, a character who sacrifices themselves reduces the challenge level of a card by 2.

Is the tale of the The Acceptance happy, tragic, or bittersweet? Or does it all depend on your perspective? Have the crew survived? You may want to close the story with a montage. What is each character doing now?

The Rules

Players

You can play The Voyage of The Acceptance with any number of players. It works best with between one and five. If playing with two or more, one player should be the facilitator. They can start by reading this text …

It is early evening aboard the skyship The Acceptance. Far below us, rich pine forests are rolling by. It is fine flying weather, and the skies around us, for now, are empty. Soon pale miniature cliffs slip by below, and now we are over the vast dark sea. The sun's glow on the horizon fades. One by one the stars come out, but they fail to illuminate the waves below. We are travelling in silence and darkness. We put on our lanterns. Our voyage has begun.

Tools

We'll need some blank paper to draw our ship plan on, and pens or pencils. We'll also need a deck of playing cards, and some six-sided dice. It's not completely necessary, but we may also want tokens of five different colors to keep track of our resources.

Setting Up

1. First we divide the deck of cards into three piles: spades by themselves, hearts and diamonds together, clubs by themselves. Shuffle each pile individually. Then we stack them as one pile with spades at the top, hearts and diamonds in the middle, and clubs at the bottom.

2. Now we draw our skyship. Leave plenty of space to add more later. This image is called our "ship map."

3. We have six GOLD. Let's put some coins on our ship map.

Who Are We?

There are four of us aboard The Acceptance. Let's choose who we are, and write our names and/or sketch ourselves around our skyship. There are eight options, two for each role. All of us have led lives before we became skyfarers:

Who is the Captain?:

Ekon, the guillable miller.

OR Kiira, the hedonistic trapper.

Who is the First Mate?

Emilia, the restless courtesan.

OR Tilly, the arrogant scrivener.

Who is the Navigator?

Amare, the wealthy shepherd.

OR Feechi, the hyper-efficient mariner.

Who is the Engineer?

Isabis, the ambitious player.

OR Chizoba, the glamorous courtesan.

If there are four players, each of us plays one character. If there are three players or fewer, then any remaining characters aboard The Acceptance can be played collectively.

Playing the Game

1. To play, we take the top card and interpret one of the two prompts offered. We countinue until we draw the King of Clubs.

2. Resources. Sometimes we may gain resources: STEEL, GUILE, SPIRIT, TECH, or GOLD. We'll record them in some way, either on the ship plan, or a separate sheet, or using tokens. Every resource is tagged to either a crew member or to the ship itself. The only difference is that if a crew member is killed or leaves, we lose the resources tagged to them.

3. Projects. Sometimes we may undertake a large project (e.g. repairs or enhancements to the ship). These take several turns to complete, so we can place a die on the ship plan to count down the days till completion. After we draw each card, all the dice on the ship plan count down by one point. When a project reaches zero, the die gets removed and the project is completed.

4. Losing Crew. If we lack the resources to overcome a challenge, there is another way. The loss of a crew member reduces any difficulty rating by 2. For example, instead of needing to burn 3 SPIRIT, we only need to burn 1 SPIRIT. We narrate what happens: the crew member may sacrifice themself deliberately, or be killed accidentally; they may get lost, get stranded, or simply leave the ship. We decide what happens to them, but whatever it is, they won't be back during this game.

5. Damage. Sometimes our ship may sustain DAMAGE. If our cumulative DAMAGE ever reaches 6 or higher, The Acceptance disintegrates, and our story is over.

6. Ending the Story. When we draw the King of Clubs, we reshuffle the entire deck. We draw three final cards, and look them up in the Final Chapter.

Tell a Story

Use imagination and pragmatism to interpret the prompts. If the card refers to someone who isn't there, make it be about someone else instead. If you are playing solo and the prompt invites a discussion, you can either skip it, or mark it with a journal entry in a logbook, or in some other way.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *