Halloween MG Mission

For my Halloween RPG this year I think I’ve settle on finally learning/running Mouse Guard. The adventure will have a Halloween-ish theme for the holiday.

I’m brand new to the game, though I’ve had the hardback for years now so I figured I’d post and hopefully get some input to help make the game go smoothly.

I have the kernel of an idea: Gwendolyn calls the patrol in and tells them that a town (TBD which) has been reporting missing mice over the past few weeks. Residents attribute the missing citizens to a ghost. White shapes have been seen in the night and strange sounds have been heard.

The truth is an albino snake has been feeding off of the mice over the past few weeks. Somehow he’s escaping detection (I was thinking of setting it some place where the snake could be traveling between the walls of a fort or something). The white shapes and sounds are obviously glimpses of the snake.

I definitely want the investigation and fight with the snake to be primary. One of the ideas I had for a clue is the rate of victims vanishing due to the snake needing to feed. After little Molly another mouse was taken just a day later, but after Fat Bob no mice disappeared for four whole days.

I’ve also toyed with the idea of there being a mouse, or group of them either bringing the snake here for their own nefarious purposes, either directly or as a distraction while they enact some other scheme. I don’t want to throw too much at new players the first time though.

Ok, that was a bit of a mini brain dump. I’m curious what advice anyone might have…

Have it be in the town of Appleloft in the Fall. It is a small community that relies on harvesting apples for food and cider (Hard Cider too.)

The territories are having an Indian Summer and it has been quite long and warm.(Hence the snake is active.) The Mice have been disappearing while harvesting apples near the settlement and has all the mice scared to harvest. Hence they sent word to the Guard.

Now the Snake lives in an old abandoned Weasel hole that was walled up and abandoned becuase of a illness that happened long ago. In side this lair there are weasel remains along with mice trophies to give an impression that it is Weasel spirits.(Make sure it is clear the lair is in bad shape and no weasals have lived there in sometime.

You could also add that one mouse in town discovered the lair and accidentally aroused the snake. He now believes there is treasure in this lair and wants to find it without anyone finding out, especially the Guard. He wants the snake dead but if he admits he knows something he is afraid they will discover the treasure too, so he is spreading rumors of ghost Weasals looking to get revenge for being driven out of the territories.(He has no clue what killed these Weasels.)

Have him leave weasel bones here and there with threatening messages.(He hopes this will keep the towns Mice from heading out and being in danger.) He also watchs the hole for when the snake leaves to hunt and then goes in to search the lair for the treasure. Now since the snake hunts by scent he is wearing a strong mix of smelly herbs and bee’s wax to hide his scent from the snake and has told those he loves the most they should wear it too becuase it wards off bad spirits.

His end goal is to keep this up till Winter when he will attack the snake while it sleeps. He knows the winter will be hard without the harvest so he has been quietly suggesting that they forget the harvest and instead rely on Lockhaven for help. The Appleloft’s three leaders, who are the Heads of the three major families in Appleloft do not want to rely on Lockhaven and are backing the Guard in their hunt fully.

Weather or not there is treasure is up to you but it would be fun if there was not any treasure.

Great ideas, I’ll definitely be incorporating some of them.

This makes me wish I hadn’t already gotten my campaign set for the Spring – this sounds like a great mission to run around Halloween!

Since my pbem game puttered out, I’ll share a little of what we did, and what was to come. It’s based around a similar theme.

The patrol enters a fairly secluded roadhouse, where they quickly discover that mice have been recently going missing, and hear the innkeepers lamenting that they are “cursed”. There, they also encounter an enemy, who is part of an organization calling themselves the “Ghost Rangers”. These rangers are at the inn to investigate the missing mice. The guardmice engage in an Argument Conflict with their enemy (assisted by one or more Ghost Rangers) while the innkeepers leave the room to go about their business, supposedly temporarily. The Goals of the Argument center around which team will be allowed to investigate the mystery.

Following the conclusion of the Argument, the guardmice realize that the innkeepers have vanished. They begin to investigate. When they go outdoors, they are attacked by the “ghosts” which are causing mice to vanish without a trace. They are actually ghost bats. Do a little googling, and you’ll see that ghost bats usually eat insects but can also be carnivorous, attacking small animals when necessary. You’ll also find some cool, creepy pictures. Anyhow, the ghost bats will attempt to carry away at least one of the guardmice, and/or maybe even the enemy they just Argued with.

In order to avoid the same fate as the previous mice captured by these bats, the guardmice must engage in an aerial combat type scene, attempting to escape. Since there was already a full Conflict (the Argument), I’d suggest running this as something more like a Complex Obstacle.

The GM’s Turn ends. The guardmice have a fairly clear mission ahead of them: They must track the ghost bats back to their lair (a dark, spooky cave) and rescue whatever still-living mice might still be there. If they have remaining checks, they might want to conclude their business with their enemy and/or this “Ghost Ranger” organization.

I liked the idea of a bat rather than something like a snake, since it would leave no trace the way a ground-borne animal might, giving it more of a “ghost” feel. I believe that the Shrike from the rulebook is usable as a ghost bat with maybe a minor modification or two. I also like that given that ghost bats are primarily insectivores, and they’re attacking mice, there might be more ways the players could approach the problem than just trying to kill off the bats.

Feel free to use any of these ideas for your Halloween game.