I ran an Open Legend one-shot for my group this weekend. We’re wrapping up a Pathfinder campaign, and we wanted to see how Open Legend worked for our group before making the switch. I have to say it went pretty well. There was a bit of a learning curve grokking the different boons and banes in play and the options they opened up for improvisation, but it went well, and I think we will get more comfortable as we familiarize ourselves with the system. Anyway, the point of this post is one of the funnier moments that happened during our game.
One thing I wanted to try in our one shot is something I have been doing with my NPCs, so I asked my players to write down an impulse for their characters after they picked pregens. For those who have played a PbtA system like Dungeon World, it’s that sort of impulse. One of my players picked the druid pregen and wrote “to save the animals” as his impulse.
During the session, the party encountered a group of creatures who were trying to steal a particularly large and valuable crystal. After they killed one of them, the other tried to flee. One of the PCs tried to immobilize it with a well-placed shot, but he didn’t roll well enough to succeed outright. However, even though the creature got away, it still dropped the crystal—down through a grate into the sewers.
The druid and one of the other PCs went into the sewers after it. Unfortunately, it had been washed away. The druid turned himself into a crocodile (the player had been enjoying turning into various creatures just because he could) and proceeded to go looking for the crystal. I ask him to roll Perception, which he does, but he rolls less than he needs. I decide he finds it but with a twist: some rats have found something shiny (the crystal) and are incorporating it into their nest. The druid is conflicted. He wants to save the animals (i.e., not disturb the rats’ nest), but he also wants to get the crystal back. He decides the rats win and returns to tell the party member he couldn’t find it. On top of that, he tries to lead the other PC the wrong way. It was obviously the wrong way because the water was flowing in the wrong direction for where the crystal could have gone. The other PC picks up on this soon enough, so he goes back the other way to look for himself. He finds the rats, but the druid asks him not to bother them. They think for a bit, and then they both leave to figure out what to do next.
The party ended up tracking down a glassmaker in town to make them something suitably similar to the crystal, so the PC with Movement could use his telekinesis to teleport and swap the crystals. He succeeded, the rats had their shiny, and the party had recovered the crystal they needed.
All in all, it was quite the hilarious end to the one-shot. I’m excited that we’ll be switching to Open Legend for my next campaign. Once everyone started to get how you could pretty much do anything and then resolve it with an action roll, they started getting really creative. It was great!