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Dungeon World Actual Play

Posted in Featured, Games

Daniel Lofton, of Burrito Quest fame, ran some Dungeon World last Friday, and was kind enough to post this actual play report (Warning: contains spoilers for the Purple Wurm Graveyard, originally from here):

Character creation went smoothly, with my only deviation being that I allowed them to swap two stats of their choosing, but before they had rolled their target(?) stats. They went with a Bard (Philby Drangle) and a Wizard (Dalmore Chianti). I started them out in town bargaining with a half-orc merchant for the price of the purple ivory.

They immediately failed an Adventure Hook move and got their selling price cut by 25%. They did however succeed at their second attempt and were supplied with a hireling goblin named Ragamuffin to be their guide. Ragamuffin was immediately cowed into subservience by Dalmore’s Order Hireling move and offered to carry his bandages.

Once they were into the dungeon they sent Ragamuffin ahead with the torch through the first door they found. Ragamuffin tripped a trap which unleashed fire beetles and sealed off the room. Dalmore tried to grab the torch before the room was blocked off and promptly had his arm crushed. They then had to force their way into the room, Phliby Defying Danger to get past the fire beetles and grab the bandages from Ragamuffin’s mutilated body. They managed to dispatch the beetles but lost their only torch in the process of trying to secure the room, the one encounter already necessitating a rest.

From there Philby was almost killed by the mimic in the Carnivore Room, Dalmore donned the ceremonial worm priest vestment (at which point they almost vacated the dungeon after figuring out how much the stuff was worth), they set off the shriekers in the Myconid room which attracted maggot nagas (during which fight the worm priest vestment was damaged to half value), Philby chose to acquire clerical powers upon leveling and immediately began communing with the worm god, they reached the worm graveyard and 1) Philby, trying to get better insight on the situation through the worm god, began to eat dirt 2) they bumblefucked their way through hurriedly collecting purple ivory and managed to only get one small load out before the purple worm awoke and almost killed them both.

From there they made it out with only one additional wandering monster (maggot-filled zombie) encounter. Of course they left half the dungeon unexplored, but still, a success. I was a bit worried about only having two players, so I scaled the encounters with multiple monsters down a little. Seemed to work out just fine. All in all the system felt very organic. I think there was maybe a bit too much of the players stating the move they wanted, rather than the action they wanted to take, then figuring it out (for example, deciding to Spout Lore when it seemed like Discern Realities was what they really wanted). But it being the first time with the system it went well.

Sage LaTorra is a game designer and engineering manager at Google. You may know him from Dungeon World.

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