SCP Phase One

SCP: The Tabletop Roleplaying Game is by Jason Keech and 26 Letter Publishing. You can find it on DriveThruRPG. Content relating to the SCP Foundation, including the SCP Foundation logo, is licensed under Creative Commons Sharealike 3.0 and all concepts originate from http://www.scpwiki.com and its authors. 


Basil is running a game of SCP: The Tabletop Roleplaying Game for his friends. Cat, David, Max, and Veri play newly appropriated Class 'D' civilians taken out of dangerous and suspicious circumstances.

SETUP

Three days ago, the town of Manor Cove lost touch. Officials that have gone to investigate have found a wall of thick fog surrounding it. Satellite feeds are obscured by a solid cloud mass that moved in when the town went dark. No sounds nor signs of life come from inside the fog except an odd moaning that seems carried on the wind. A couple of abandoned vehicles were headed out of town with no sign of the owners.

Basil informs the players that they can rise above Class D if they do well in this operation. If not, they're likely to be retired.

It's their goal to find the source of the disturbance and return to report the intelligence.

THE PLAY

Ext. Main Road, Manor Cove. Afternoon. Thick fog obscures everything more than ten feet away.

Vaya is driving the group in an unmarked black sedan, going slowly and scanning the fog ahead of them intently. Chia sits in the front seat, looking prepared in her body armor and helmet and carrying her shotgun in both hands as she searches the street for signs of life. Lawrence and Kris sit in the back. Behind Vaya on the driver's side, Lawrence cradles his rifle and has the window rolled down. He's dressed in riding leathers and stares out the window. Occasionally, he sniffs at the air. Kris is on the other side. He's in urban camouflage, and he has his pistol out and is flipping the safety off and on absent-mindedly as they drive down the road.

Max / Kris: Can't see a thing in this damned fog.

Vaya / Cat: Shh. I thought I heard something.

Lawrence / David: It's that dern moanin'. I feel like we're gettin' closer to it.

Chia / Veri: We're getting close to Town Square. Maybe something is happening there.

Vaya / Cat: How close are we? Should I head straight into Town Square or park beforehand?

Lawrence / David: Before. We don't wanna get stuck in a mess of trouble.

Basil: As you get into town, you notice a large store on your left, lights shining brightly in the gloom. It looks like a supermarket. There's plenty of parking out front.

Veri: (nods) I turn into the driveway.

Basil: You leave the car?

Chia / Veri: Yeah. Shotgun ready.

Lawrence / David: An' my rifle, too.

Basil: As you approach the center of town, the moaning seems closer. It's hard to place, like it's coming from all around. You barely make out a strange murmur underneath. It comes and goes, and you can never distinguish any words in it. You can't even tell whether it's speaking English or not.
You pull into Hafner's Foods and exit the car. Cold, wet droplets form on your skin, sending a chill up and down your body. You see the huddled bulk of a dozen automobiles scattered around the lot but no signs of their drivers. One's door stands ajar, while the back hatch of a coupe is left wide open.

Chia / Veri: My head is on a swivel.

Kris / Max: And I'm staying close to her.

Lawrence / David: I don't like it. Feels like we're sittin' ducks out in this here parking lot.

Vaya / Cat: Vaya's Skorpion is readied.

Basil: Nearby is an accident. A sedan t-boned a parked sports car in front of the entrance.
Roll initiative.

Lawrence / David: Sweet!

Vaya / Cat: I got… (rolls again) 18.4.

Basil: We'll drop fractions except in the case of a tie.

Chia / Veri: (sourly) Ugh. 4.

Lawrence / David: 15.

Kris / Max: Uh. Wow. Did you say dice exploded in this?

Basil: Right. For attribute checks, d8s explode to d10s. D10s explode to 2d12, and d12s explode to d20s.

Vaya / Cat: (brightly) I exploded a d8!

Kris / Max: So I got a 10 on my d10 and an 8 on my d8.

Basil: Then you get another d10 and 2d12, but you don't add them. Each counts separately as an individual die in the pool.

Vaya / Cat: Hold on. Does that mean if your exploded dice come up 1s, you have to subtract them from your total?

Basil: Ah, the Rule of One. You are correct.

Vaya / Cat: … oh.

Kris / Max: So. 23.

Vaya / Cat: I hate you so much right now.

Basil: Great job!

Kris / Max: That's right. You can call me Master Z. Now. What do I see?

Basil: Okay, Master Z. You're watching Chia's back when you spot someone slipping behind a car parked about two lanes over. 

Z / Max: (whispers to Chia) Don't look now, but I think we got contact.

Chia / Veri: Spread out. We may have a hostile.

Vaya / Cat: Vaya takes up position behind the car with her machine pistol.

Basil: In a moment. Z? Are you acting this turn?

Z / Max: Uh, yeah. Standing behind the walking tank.

Basil: Anything else?

Z / Max: "Don't worry; I'll watch your ass--uh. back."

Chia / Veri: Do you want to die?

Basil: Ah... yes. That works.

Okay. Vaya, you're standing behind the car in an Aiming stance?

Vaya / Cat: Correct.

Basil: That leaves you one action.

Vaya / Cat: I'll React.

Basil: Fair enough. Lawrence?

Lawrence / David: Call me Boomer. Please. I'm behind the car with my rifle, but I'm still watchin' our backs in case more of them buggers come up behind us.

Basil: You're in the Ready stance, but not Aiming?

Lawrence / David: Ayep.

Chia / Veri: Is my turn first, or the tango's?

Basil: What is your Awareness/Reaction rating?

Chia / Veri: 0.

Basil: You… can't tell. Go ahead.

Chia / Veri: (to Z) Which car did you say?

Z / Max: (Points) That one.

Chia / Veri: Heading over there, shotgun ready.

Basil: You get to the indicated car but see nothing on the other side. Behind, you can barely make out the outlines of your friends in the fog.

Z / Max: Can I move up with her?

Basil: Sure. You stay at Chia's side and keep two eyes out for trouble.

Chia / Veri: Did you see it move?

[Max looks at Basil, who shakes his head.]

Z / Max: No. It must've moved away in the mist.

Basil: Z. Back to you.

Z / Max: I look all around us for signs of motion.

Basil: What's your Awareness / Reaction?

Z / Max: 2.

Basil: Make a check.

Z / Max: 13.

Basil: Well. You can't be sure, but you think there's a shape huddled behind the minivan about 20 feet ahead.

Z / Max: I point it out to Chia. "See that over there?"

Chia / Veri: Do we both see it?

Basil: It's barely visible through the window, but you can't make out anything more than its rounded contours.

Z / Max: Like somebody's shoulder or head?

Basil: Maybe.

Vaya. Your turn.

Vaya / Cat: Vaya is still taking a React action. "Any sign of it?"

Z / Max: We have radios, right? She doesn't have to scream?

Basil: The radios crackle and pop with static, and Vaya's transmission comes in garbled, but you make it out.

Chia / Veri: “Maybe. We're moving ahead."

Vaya / Cat: Vaya will move around the car, but she keeps her gun raised.

Basil: Okay. Lawren—ah. Boomer?

Boomer / David: I'm staying put.

Chia / Veri: Are the bad guys making a move?

Basil: You don't know. You believe you see the form behind the van shift a little.

Chia / Veri: I move around the van.

Z / Max: And I'm right with her.

Vaya / Cat: "Don't go too far—we shouldn't get separated."

Basil: You only catch the first two words of that as a wave of static drowns out the rest.

Chia / Veri: (shrugs. To Max) Waving you around the other side with two fingers.

Z / Max: Sorry, I don't speak army nerd. What does that mean?

Chia / Veri: It means go that way and shut up, dumbass. And keep your fool nose out of my field of fire.

Z / Max: Oh. Got it.

[Everyone laughs.]

Basil: That was good. Both of you gain a point of Reverence. You come around the van and spot the dark, lurking form of—

Chia / Veri: I blast it!

Basil: Ah. Very well. Your shotgun roars. Milk, ketchup, and cream of mushroom soup splatter against the side of the van as your shells rip mercilessly into the cart full of groceries. Shredded bits of paper bag and plastic wrapper soar into the air and flutter to the ground.

Z / Max: Congratulations, Fluffy. You killed it.

Chia / Veri: Do not. Call me that.

Basil: Z, you spot a flash behind—

Z / Max: (yells over Basil) Fluffy, look out!

Basil: Chia, a dark form that springs from the mist and—

Chia / Veri: (also yells over Basil) Dodge!

Basil: slashes her. Chia, what's your Reaction Defense?

Chia / Veri: Ah. Yeah. It's… um. -1.

Basil: Wait. What?

Chia / Veri: Yeah. My base Reaction Defense is 0.0, and my armor gives me -1.

Basil: Uh… huh. You can spend a point of Exertion for a free Defense...

Chia / Veri: My armor and hit points seem good for now. Let's see what they've got.

Basil: Aha. So, they get a critical, then—

Chia / Veri: Curses!

Basil: for double damage. 24 points.

Chia / Veri: Ouch! My armor soaks 5, but that's still 19 damage. We should definitely dodge, huh?

Basil: The thing from the mist lunges, flailing one limb at you. You try to step back, but it connects with the tip of something hard and razor-sharp. Your body armor makes a grinding screech of protest. However, it does protect you from a bloody death. So there is that.

Vaya / Cat: (shocked) That would've dropped me in a single hit…

Boomer / David: Hang in there, gal! You got this!

Basil: Double damage is extremely bad in this game. Do not take a critical hit.

Boomer / David: What's a critical hit in this system?

Vaya / Cat: Twice the target number or more. Half the target number or less is a critical failure.

Basil: Those are bad, too. Avoid those.

Z / Max: Ravenloft it is not, but it is a horror setting…

Vaya / Cat: More like Stephen King, so far.

Chia / Veri: Right?

Basil: Let's just say it promotes a healthy sense of the Darwin Effect.
Okay. Z, you're up first.

Z / Max: I'm gonna shoot it!

Basil: You said you had your handgun?

Z / Max: Yeah.

Basil: Do you stop to aim at it, or do you just start firing?

Z / Max: No, I'm just gonna unload on it.

Basil: What's your gun's Recoil?

Z / Max: Uh. 1.

Basil: Okay. Your first shot will be in the Ready stance, and your second shot will be Hip.

Z / Max: Ohhhh. I get it.

Basil: Roll Dexterity plus your Handgun skill.

Z / Max: … which is 2, and I get a +1 stance modifier for my first shot and a -1 for my second. Aw, dammit! That's 8 for my first shot.

Basil: Second shot?

Z / Max: Uh… (rolls again) heh. 20.

Basil: Well, then. His first Defense was 9, so you just barely miss on your first shot. (Rolls) He gets 10 on his second roll. 20 is double that. You score a critical hit!

Z / Max: He ducks right into my next bullet! Pow!

Basil: Right. Roll your damage as normal. We'll double it at the end.

Z / Max: My gun does… 2d8 plus 1d10+3 damage.

Basil: Oh. Of course. You roll the base damage as written. For the X Damage, you multiply it by your Projectile Multiplier.

Z / Max: That's times two!

Basil: Exactly.

Z / Max: Okay. So 2d8 plus 2d10+6 damage, right?

Basil: Indeed.

Z / Max: Eh. Sucky roll. I did fucking 22 damage. 

Basil: Hm. Not very critical, was it? Roll that again.

Z / Max: Hey! That's more like it! 33 damage.

Basil: Doubled is 66. Your bullet goes through its head, and the thing collapses in a bloody mess.

Boomer / David: Oh! Good shot!

Chia / Veri: What is—

Basil: Think fast! Another one lunges out of the darkness on Max's right flank.

Chia / Veri: Can I shoot it?

Basil: It's a hip shot. Go.

Boomer / David: Hey, I got my rifle. Can I shoot it?

Basil: No. And hold that thought.

Boomer / David: (looks at Cat) Uh-oh. That sounds bad.

Chia / Veri: 17. 

Basil: (rolls) Tsk. Also critical. What's the damage?

Chia / Veri: 7d6. 24 points.

Basil: 48, then? Your shotgun blasts off the left half of its head and most of its shoulder. It crashes to the ground in a heap.

Z / Max: Hey, Fluffy. How many shells you got left?

Chia / Veri: One more. Just enough to split your melon.

Z / Max: Heh. You load. We'll circle, and I'll shoot anything that gets close.

Chia / Veri: Sounds like a plan.

Basil: You two stand back-to-back in a puddle of mixing milk and red wine, watching the shifting fog for attackers.

Vaya, make me an Awareness / Reaction check.

Vaya / Cat: 17.

Basil: From the fog, you make out a dark form charging toward you. It seems human, but its pupils are fully dilated and glowing an eerie, demonic red. Drying blood covers its chest and face as it draws its lips back in a feral snarl and gurgles a guttural moan.

Vaya / Cat: Vaya fires her SMG at him in a Full Auto burst. I roll... Tsk. I got 5. There's a way to reroll, yes?

Basil: Yes. You can spend 2 Reverence to reroll any Attribute check.

Vaya / Cat: I do that. And I get… 19. Better.

Basil: Oof. He'll swap an action for Defense. He gets 12.

Vaya / Cat: That's 7 points. I increase my Projectile Modifier by half that, correct?

Basil: That's right.

Vaya / Cat: Then I deal 3d12 plus 5d8. (chuckles darkly) 57 damage.

Basil: You unload half your clip into the charging man. The force of your bullets stops him short and drives him backward, jerking as you riddle his torso and chest with lead. He falls to his knees and then topples over sideways with a final, gasping cough.
Boomer, what's your Awareness?

Boomer / David: 2.

Basil: Good enough. Footsteps behind alert you seconds before two dark shapes rush from the clouds of fog, charging toward you.

Boomer / David: Can I put the car between us?

Basil: You maneuver around the car. Are you taking a hipshot, as well?

Boomer / David: Do I have time to draw my Glock while I'm moving?

Basil: Sure. Roll to hit.

Boomer / David: 15.

Basil: Your target rolls 12. That's a hit.

Boomer / David: 2d6 plus 2d8+6. 30 damage.

Basil: Your bullet enters the attacker's shoulder, spinning him and making him stumble forward to slump on the car. The other charger vaults over the trunk and swipes at you with long, wicked claws. She rolls 13 to hit.

Boomer / David: My Reaction Defense is 6.4. Does that mean she gets a critical hit?

Basil: I'll give you the +2 bonus for half cover, so she does not. However, her movement does give her a +2 Momentum bonus to her damage multiplier.

Boomer / David: Ouch.

Basil: That's 23 damage.

Boomer / David: Oh, crap. I'm down to 6 hp.

Basil: If you follow up with a melee attack, I'll let you use her Momentum bonus against her, even though it's technically a different turn.

Boomer / David: Then I drop my rifle and draw my machete. 16 to hit.

Basil: She has no actions left to defend. You make a critical.

Boomer / David: Nice. You said I get a +2 to my Melee Multiplier?

Basil: That's right.

Boomer / David: 6d8, then. 23 points.

Basil: It doubles to 46. She leaps across the trunk at you as you drop your rifle and whip out your machete. Her claws shred your jacket. She plows directly into you, nearly knocking you over. At the same time, your machete hacks her head clean off.

Boomer / David: Ugh. Fine. What's going on with that other varmint?

Vaya / Cat: Can Vaya shoot first?

Basil: Absolutely. Full auto?

Vaya / Cat: Right. Can she aim?

Basil: Of course.

Vaya / Cat: I roll… 15.

Basil: He can't dodge. Let's say you get 10 more than his Defense.

Vaya / Cat: So +5? That makes my damage 3d12 plus 7d8. I get… 50.

Basil: The attacker turns to face you as you begin shooting. Your fire traces up his chest and past his nose. His head explodes in a storm of bullets.

Vaya / Cat: Vaya loads the next clip.

Boomer / David: Ugh. Damn. Thanks. That last'un scratched me all up good.

Basil: All of you hear a shout from the direction of the store. "Hey! In here! Hurry!"

Vaya / Cat: Can Vaya take a look at the body first?

Basil: Well, that depends. The moaning is getting closer. You're starting to make out more shapes in the direction of the road.

Vaya / Cat: Never mind, then. She races toward the market.

Boomer / David: Ditto.

Z / Max: We hear the shouting, too?

Basil: Yes. You're closer, so you actually see a lanky teenager wearing a stocker's apron waving at you from the open door.

Chia / Veri: Come on. Let's go!

Z / Max: Yes, ma'am!

Basil: As you get near, the worker beckons. "Hurry!" he cries. "We gotta get the barricades back up before they get to us!"
Vaya, a flash of light catches your attention. You look over your shoulder to see a line of shapes moving toward you. Behind them, casting them in stark relief even through the fog, shines a bright blue light, like an electrical arc. A group of the things kneels around the one you killed. As you watch, its body vanishes.

Vaya / Cat: What? Uh… nope nope nope. She picks up the pace.

Basil: You all reach the grocery store, where a line of metal shelves stands against the doors. The worker, a pimply, gangly kid, holds the door open for you. The name tag on his dirty apron reads "Corey." He locks the doors, hands shaking, and a man and woman drop a shelf behind you with a crash. 
Several of the things slam hard against the glass door. The shelves creak and shudder, but they hold against the pounding for two minutes... three minutes... four. Corey presses his hands against his ears and squeezes his eyes shut against the noise. Abruptly, the things give up, turn around, and disappear into the fog.


That's SCP Phase One. Tune in next week for the next episode!


Game well, my friends,

Jonathan Andrews

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