High Noon Playtest Session 3- The Secret at the Variss Industries Refinery

Last session we left off with the players going to the Three-legged Dog Saloon to get some food and sleep before heading to the Variss Industries Refinery.


  • A scout that can move silently, has a badass rifle, and knows nature and shit (Tyler)
  • And a gunslinger who’s quick on the draw (Kevin)
  • A voodoo practicing Knight of Faith (Liam- who was visiting from NJ)
  • A snake oil salesman who’s 65, but doesn’t look a day over 25 Cult of Personality (Sammie)
  • A “I’m an evil warlock” sorcerer (Chad)

Not Present

  • A pugilist that has fists of fury (Nate)
  • A grumpy, pushy shaman(Angie)
  • A Showman who is trained in the etiquette of the West, motherfuckers! (Amelia)

Heading Out for Adventure

The group awoke in the AM after getting a good night sleep feeling refreshed and lovely (and more importantly 2 HP back).  The then went to the Oddity House to see if they could procure something to heal them in the coming battle.  The owner of the shop was an older Chinese man named Shen who welcomed to the shop and offered them needed supplies to fight evil, like garlic, salt, etc.

The group cut right to the chase and said they were there to rid the town of the green fog and need stuff to aid them in the fight.  Shen reached under the counter and put down two vials filled with a red liquid, a torch, and a small ring (and yes, one of my players made a “one ring to rule us all…?” joke).  Shen explained that the vials would restore health and vitality to a person, the torch once light, was ever-burning and wouldn’t ever go it.  It gave off no heat, and would not catch things on fire, but always provided light.  The ring was a minor enchantment that would block one single magical spell before becoming just an ordinary ring.  The group attempted to haggle, but failed, and in the end Tyler and Sammie each took a healing potion and bid Shen farewell.

Let the Lead Fly

The group made it to the outskirts of town and met up with the Sheriff, Janey “One-eye” and her friend, a voodoo practicing Knight of Faith.  Introductions were made and the group set off to the Variss Industries refinery.




The refinery was made of a sinister-looking black metal, much like that of Cold Smoke City, with a big VI over a cog painting on the door.  Before the group could get to the door, they were attacked by two insideout zombie men.  Kevin took quite a bit of damage and from one of the guys, taking him for 20 HP to a whopping 8.  He was hurting.

Aside: In this game I am using my variant rule for HP:  roll 1d6+1 add your Con Score and Con Modifier- that’s your starting HP (unless your a fighting class- roll 2d4+1 instead of 1d6).  Everyone started off with around 13-19 HP… Then I lowered the boom on them.  When they gain a level- they only gain +1 HP per level… that’s it.  I designed this so a shotgun to the face will hurt you regardless of level.

After dispatching the two insideout zombie men, Tyler searched the area and found a backpack of one of the men.  It had a torch, some bullets, a light pistol, and a penny dreadful (Liam’s character became obsessed with Penny Dreadfuls and searched every room, high and low, for more).

The group went into the refinery and headed right and came to a staff lunchroom.  There were bodies all over the floor and two insideout zombie men.  On the far side of the room was a staircase leading up.  The group let lead fly and took down the baddies like cake.

The most amusing piece of this fight was one of the zombies, Tyler, and Kevin all had the same initiative score and went at the same time.  The zombie rolled a one on it’s attack, Tyler hit, and Kevin scored a critical success.  So it played out that the creature went to attack, slipped in blood and smacked its head on the table, bouncing back up- Tyler shot a hole through the things shoulder, spinning it around, and Kevin blew the back of the thing’s skull out with a well placed (and timed) shot.  The group looted the room and went up stairs.

On the second floor they found the foreman’s office, with the body of the foreman (sans head) inside.  Liam found a Penny Dreadful (yay), and the group found gold and a golden flask with an engraving of a person drinking liquid from the flask.  Kevin opened the flask and took a sniff; it was whisky.  Kevin took a health drink of it- damned tasty whisky.  He put the flask in his pack.

The group went to the end of the hall and saw a closed door with the words, “John Tundstill- operator of Variss Industries New Mexico Sector” on the door.  Sammie kicked the door in, the group ready for a fight.  The door handle turned fiery red and shot out- hitting Sammie.  Her clothes instantly ignited (as did everyone else as they were all packed tightly by the door).  After taking a bit of damage and putting out their flaming asses, the group wandered into the room and started poking around.

The room had a large desk, a safe, a closet (closed), and a bookcase.  On the desk were two pieces of paper.  The first was handwritten and was from someone in Spring Water only identified as “J” speaking of the fresh batch of slaves that would arrive from the Remnants of the United States in a months time.

Aside: We are playing in a Weird West setting of my own creation that I’ll be publishing after High Noon comes out.  In it the world has collapsed and the United States is basically only the east coast and has barricaded itself behind a great iron wall, stretching from Pennsylvania to Maine.  Anyone can be a slave in the setting- race doesn’t play a factor.  Also Indentured Servitude is very much alive and well in the setting.

The second piece of paper was a telegraph speaking to Mr. John Tundstill from Variss Industries.  It was complimenting him on his efficiency with getting ore from the mines.  Second it addressed a telegraph that Tundstill had sent, speaking of a strange artifact found in one of the mines.  The telegraph told Tunstill to lock it up and keep it safe and VI would send an expert to examine it.

The group then found a secret passage behind the bookcase- a spiral staircase leading up to the third floor.  Finally they opened the closet door and found John Tundstill hiding in there with a gas mask on.  After the group removed the mask (upon which he freaked out-fearful of the gas) and was beaten for a bit- he told the group that they found a large circular stone tablet in a lower mine- the area seemed to have been delved long ago (but how could that be?!), and VI sent a sorcerer to examine the tablet…  After he arrived that’s when the green fog started to appear- coming from the tablet itself.  The group asked where this sorcerer was and Tundstill pointed a shaking finger at the spiral staircase.

The group then beat on him some more and made him open the safe.  In the safe they found a deed to a piece of property in Cold Smoke City, $200, a ruby, and a gun of red metal with a black handle.  On the bullet cylinder was an etching of a demon blowing flames from their mouth.  The group threatened John and he readily explained how the gun works.

The Gun of Demon Flame: 1d6+1 damage; Rate of Fire 2; 6 shots; Range 30′; After a successful attack, the wielder can will the bullet to explode (wielder must succeed a Saving Throw).  The target is instantly ignited in flame, taking an additional 1d6 damage.  Each round the target takes 1d6 fire damage until they put out the flame or die.

Kevin took the gun, Tyler took the deed, Sammie took the ruby, and the rest of the money was divided evenly.  The group buffaloed Tundstill, tied him up, and threw him back in the closet.

Upstairs into the Lair

The group went upstairs and found a door covered in green slime.  Opening the door they found a man wearing robes standing over a large circular tablet.  He cackled, “OH GOOD!  MORE PEOPLE HAVE COME TO PLAY!”


The group opened up on the sorcerer and thanks to two critical attacks, dropped him before anything else could be done.

The group was celebrating, giving each other high fives and hugs when the stomach of the sorcerer bloated and became overlarge, finally exploding in a spray of guts, bone, and blood.  Rising from the hole in the body of the sorcerer was a foul and hideous looking demon.


The group group all succeeded their fear saving throws (thanks to burning Luck points) and combat began.  This was a brutal fight.  Nearly everyone was at 1-3 HP by the end and that was after having to use a Luck point for a second wind (half max HP back- once per session).

During this fight Chad and Kevin both rolled several critical failures; Chad shooting Liam with a shotgun and Kevin getting whipped across the room by the demon.

Finally Kevin got in a couple lucky shots with the Gun of Demon Flame (but couldn’t succeed on the flame effect- not that it would have harmed the demon) and dropped the baddie.

The group found an amulet around the charred remains of the sorcerer and Chad took it.  The group looked at the tablet; it was ancient and had carvings and etchings that seemed to be Mayan in origin.  Liam dumped three vials of holy water on the tablet, which shattered and broke.  Sammie took a piece of it and put it in her backpack.

The group grabbed John Tundstill, Janey One-eye saying he had a date with a Hangman’s Judge.  The group was given a voucher for $100 to either the gunsmith, blacksmith, or the Oddity shop and $50 cash.

With that we ended for the night.  We will play again sometime in January.  This was a great session and I got to see just how deadly High Noon is…  which makes me happy.


About wrathofzombie

I am a History major attending a community college until I can get more financial aid and attend a four year school. I am living in NJ with my girlfriend who is currently wrapping up on obtaining her PhD in Toxicology. I love Star Wars, Role-playing, video games, working out, reading, writing, and hanging with my girlfriend, dog (Perfect), and two kittens (Birch and Brambles). My main focus on this site will be my discussion of Role-playing games and ideas and hopefully contribute something worth a damn. View all posts by wrathofzombie

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