Actual Play – Ayernand “Troll Slayer” (5/16/2012)

GM: Shaun Hayworth
Players: Sean Nittner, Kristin Hayworth, Justin Dhiel, and Noam Rosen
System: Burning Wheel
Setting: Burning Theorsa

We finished this “session”. It only took three weeks. But it was very satisfying. It felt more like an “adventure” than a typical Burning Wheel session as well. Travel to a place, rally the troops, and fight a huge battle. And we did it, all of it.

As per the last session, we streamed this episode, all 3+ hours of it on youtube. If you’re particularly fond of actual play, check out

Range and Cover

I suggested, perhaps foolishly that since Moya and Afon had range on the Trolls, and they had ranged weapons, and the trolls didn’t,  maybe they should use the Range a Cover rules. This seemed like a good way to engage the mechanics and justifiably give the heroes a few shots at the trolls before they ripped them to shreds.

That turned out to be a learning experience. Not being familiar with Range and Cover (as a group we rarely use it and we’ve never used it in this campaign).  While the heroes on the hill fought to maintain positioning dice and script moves that would all them to shoot trolls without becoming troll food, I blissfully engaged in…


The two militarily leaders Baldric and Andon Toryn met in the field of combat and crossed swords… or in this case crossed sword and mace. So, here’s an interesting thing about maces, they are really good a crunching armor, (requiring 3 armor successes rather than a swords mere 1). This pretty much told me that a) I didn’t want to get hit and b) I should take that mace away from him as soon as I possibly could.  The fight played out quickly. In the first exchange we traded blows but our armor held out both times (phew for having 6 armor dice in my torso) but at the end of the exchange Baldric disarmed Andon.  That was key, from there out I knew I could press the advantage that he needed to get back his mace, or draw a dagger and that I’d have both positioning advantage on him and the ability to script as follows:

1: Aggressive Stance, Intimidate
2: Push
3: Set, Great Strike.

Here was my logic. If I could intimidate Andon into surrendering, great. If not, I’d push him down and then chop off his head. As is, the intimidate went off (I knew he only had a B3 Will) and he lost many, many actions.  I was ready to break from combat there, but Shaun wanted to see what I had scripted for the next volley, which thankfully was only push, ending up in Andon dropping to his knees to surrender and Baldric kicking him in the chest so he fell back into the mud. Good times.


Eventually the trolls closed, at least on Moya, and then Afon wanted part of that fun too… Ayernand stayed in R&C for a round until the troll closed on him and entered yet another Fight! I have to give Shaun props, he kept all this shit straight in his brain, which was no easy task.  Unfortunately I had to step out to take care of the kids for half an hour in the middle of this, so I didn’t get all the details, but mostly it sounded like Afon and Moya roasted one Troll but that burned out Moya completely (Forte dropped to 0).  Ayernand set up the “Ayernand Gambit” which was to be beat down by a Troll enough that it throws caution to the wind and tosses you over its shoulder, right in the perfect place for him to shove a sword up under it’s jaw and into it’s brain! Boom, Ayernand… Troll Slayer!

Wrap up

We took the king’s cousin as a captive. That was easy. Then we had to figure out what to do with all the people that were suffering in agonizing pain from the horrific burns. That was tough. Baldric ordered them put out of their misery but didn’t participate in the butchery himself (he’s such an ass sometimes).

Thoughts on this game

Ayernand made the beginner’s luck “Troll-wise” to state (sucessfully) that trolls hate wizards. Awesome!

Ayernand was also in there killing the soldiers that were wailing in pain. He had suffered the same wounds himself and knew how horrible they were. He truly was granting the mercy.

Baldric and Ayernand had a fun tied versus contenst where they both got what they wanted. Baldric made Ayernand stand out as the “Troll Slayer” but Ayernand brought down the mood of everyone with the horrors of war.

The 12 year old soldier came back in to play. Killing along side Ayernand. Horrible.

God we were Artha starved all the sudden. Everyone was out. It was close.

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