We seem to have a bit of a hiatus from our regular D&D game, so I have been filling the void with a few Victorian Shadows games, my D20 modern shadow chasers game. You can see here & here.
Before getting on the train a humorous scene ensued. While they waited to see if the bad guys were getting on the train, all but one of the tickets sold out. They needed to convince some NPCs they didn't want to get on the train, and buy their tickets and still they were one short and needed to sneak a party member on the train. It it the little things which amuse game masters.
Perhaps running an adventure on a moving train is too cliche. Having been in so many movies might lead you to believe the adventure would be too predictable. It was anything but. There is something satisfying about having characters needing to sneak past conductors, hop on and off the moving train, run down the top of the train leaping the gaps, and giving perfunctory greetings to NPCs crouching under train furniture while they casually pass them armed to the teeth. Sure the engineers were safe, a character leapt of the train only to see shadow creatures hiding under the coal car. Shadow creatures were thrown from the top of the train. A character attempting to leap onto the moving train missed. Dynamite was used by the party madman to separate the last train car from the rest of the train, mistakenly believing all the shadow creatures where in that car. Thinking they had the shadow creatures and their controller trapped in the car, they surrounded the openings; a party member peering in through a hole in the roof discovered dynamite just about to go off and the controller leaping from the train. BOOM - party members go flying off the top as the car explodes.
It was an exciting evening, and I think everyone had fun. They stopped the bad guys from getting the money, but did not stop the other half of the shadow creatures from slaying the engineers and driving the train full speed into the next station. You win some, you lose some.
Although this game does not eliminate my desire to run/play in a D&D game, it is fun to play and I enjoy running D20 in the lower levels more than in the higher levels. This group is operating at 3rd level at is very easy to run. Now I just need to work on the next overused cliche for an upcoming adventure.
The dice never lie.