Currently, I am designing a campaign in Mouse Guard 2nd Ed involving the patrol delivering the mail to all of the minor settlements in the territories and stumbling into huge conflicts through doing favors for the mice that live there. More recently, I'm stuck trying to finalize a session or two around Wildseed, which I expanded to be two Mouse Guard Wilderness Outposts at either end of a collection of the safest paths in the territories (due to the thick brambles and vegetation repelling most inclimate weather and large predators). Around the end of this section, the patrol and a search party from the first outpost discover, that due to unforeseen circumstances, the second outpost has been overrun by some large predator (that they have yet to identify) and said predator is likely still inside the outpost.

The way I want this to conclude is the Patrol sneaks around the outpost, getting a feel for how to maneuver around outpost, what attacked and where it most likely is; this would be followed by collaborating with the search party to set a trap for the beast. The patrol and the search party could probably eventually defeat the predator by running in guns blazing, but that would involve heavy casualties at best. I'm dead set on wrapping up the session[s] like this, but I have a few issues that I'd like some guidance with.

First: Should I run the scouting section as a Conflict or a series of Obstacle tests?

Second: How should I involve the predator as the subject of the plan? (should the conflict involve different ideas on how to deal with the predator, or should the conflict involve how everyone expects the predator to act vs how the predator actually acts?)


1 Answer 1


Remember the basics of constructing a Mission.

Weather, wilderness, animals, mice. Pick two primaries. If the Mission gets bigger than this, split it up.

In this case, it sounds like you've got something big here, so you can productively split it up with an intermission in the middle to serve as a players' turn. There's nothing like a capital-C-for-game-mechanics-Conflict between perception and reality, but it sounds like there's a productive difference to exploit between the plan that's being made by veterans of the territory and the information these upstarts in the Guard are going to uncover.

If the outpost army doesn't change tactics, you could give the predator a killer weapon in the conflict to come. Call it, like, "unexpected behavior", +1s on all actions, Feint is played as Versus Attack.

Anyway, here's how I'd break it down.

Sub-Mission 1: The Guard uncover how this predator behaves and tries to get the company of mice to adopt different tactics.

Initial Obstacle 1-1: A progressive investigation of the ruins. Get the lay of the land -> understand the habits of the predator -> closely survey its lair. Ob increases for the first two and the last is a versus test against the predator - I'm thinking Cartographer - Loremouse - Scout, but let your players do what makes sense. Getting more successes will give the Guard more Weapons of Wit in the upcoming conflict, but going in deeper will increase the predator's initial disposition in the chase conflict that will result from failure. Even if the guard get run off trying to map the territory, they'll still have seen how unusually the predator is acting.

Initial Obstacle 1-2: Convincing the army to do things the Guard way rather than not. The predator can't be contained by a single patrol; it'll take an army, so the Guard need to prevail in an argument conflict to see things out. Compromises will probably involve making promises to or enemies among the people of the outpost, or splitting command in the upcoming battle between outpost soldiers (who are vulnerable to Unexpected Behavior) and the Guard (who are not).

Players' Intermission: Players can use checks to recover, amass equipment for the fight ahead, or get in a crucial last bit of practice. You know, the usual.

Sub-Mission 2: The Guard and the outpost soldiers trap and dispose of the predator.

Initial Obstacle 2-1: Warfighting the predator. If the Guard are splitting command with the outpost, script the outpost actions in advance and let the Guard decide where in the conflict order to place them. The conflict can result in the capture of the predator or the scattering of the army, depending on which side winds up on top.

Success Obstacle 2-2: A journey conflict against the wilderness to take the predator, or at least its body, outside the bounds of the Territories.

Failure Obstacle 2-2: A "journey" conflict against the wilderness and the weather to regroup as much of the scattered army as possible in the wake of the loss.


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