Savaged Ghost Ship (RonCon Fall 2015)

Savaged Ghost Ship (RonCon Fall 2015)


Setting: Modern.  System: Savage Worlds

Step aboard the ghost ship and experience a new horror from Hogshead.  On September 18,1942 the German auxiliary cruiser Loki vanished. Around the world, there have been mysterious sightings ever since. Now a desperate man says he knows where it is.

You are part of the salvage team that investigates the phenomena. This man has come to you… The terror is about to start…

Rewrote this to Savage Worlds, and added some plot elements to make it more Lovecraftian horrific.  Ran it on Club MACE (did not finish) and will run it at RonCon Fall 2015


I ran this to completion at RonCon Fall 2015, after a mild attempt on the cruise.  The time between gave me more opportunity to flesh it out more, at least in my head and create a more cohesive expansion of the existing adventure. I am wrote a review for this on The Gamer’s Codex, but I wanted to go into more detail about my changes.  Not only did I change the system to Savage Worlds, I added to the plotline to bring it to life a little more, in my opinion.

I had this concept early on when I started working on an adventure for the cruise.  INstead of starting to write my own, I did a search on RPGNow and on files I have.  I found several but this one stood out.  It has the Bermuda Triangle, an old Nazi ship and time travel.  I was sold.  It was originally set up as a self contained d20 adventure with its own horror rules, its own classes and feats, etc.  That was just extra stuff to me because I was going to run it in Savage Worlds.  I did use some of the text from the classes to create the pre-gen characters, but outside of that, the d20 stuff was too dated to use.  If I had the ear of the publisher, I would highly recommend that they take this entire series and convert it to Savage Worlds.


The adventure itself draws direct influence from movies like Deep Rising and The Philadelphia Project, by combining these concepts into one and adding in a little historical connection to a specialized Nazi naval program called the Hilfskreuzer.  THe Nazi’s stole intelligance from the rumored Philadelphia project and made a cloaking device for a ship in the Hilfskreuzer fleet.  Unfortunately, due to damage in a battle, the device caused the ship to get stuck in time and space, looping between the modern era and WWII.

Enter our hero, hired by a mysterious old guy – a former British navy guy that was involved in that last battle and witness it’s disappearance – to hunt down this ship in, of course, the Bermuda Triangle!

Although interesting, I wanted more.  I wanted a more supernatural connection.  I wanted more mystery and interaction with the players.  I started with a few key ideas and came up with several additions that I really liked and helped enhance the adventure to a level that made me want to run this over and over again.  Key changes/additions I have made are:

  • The device was occult in nature and so is the research being performed by the patron, Masterson.
  • The device is powered by an imprisoned creature from another dimension – a dimension of Lovecraftian like creatures; a world inspired by the creatures from The Mist.
  • The Americans found out about the breach of the Philadelphia Project and sent an agent in to gather information.  He was aboard the ship, causing havoc when all things went haywire.
  • The loop was not necessarily cause (only) by the damage in the battle with the British.  I wanted the players to see clues of what went wrong and have a hand in fixing the damage to the system.
  • I chose to expand it from just a travel through time.  I had planned for the potential of travelling through multiple times as well as dimensions, so the ship was truly lost in time and space.

Although I liked the adventure concept and I do like the flexibility of it, for the most part the players are just going along for the ride, at least until the end.  I wanted more encounters that meant something but also something to give them that “oh sh*t” moment as well (I love that).

It went rather well, although I was a little too subtle in my cue giving.  In a game like this, there is a high danger of meta-gaming so I did not want to give too much away too soon.  This is another reason why I added so many changes.  I wanted to play into the possible meta-gaming.  But I needed more, like when they shifted into the creature’s home they saw two moons or a ringed world over the horizon.

I will probably run it again at MACE East 2016, which would be very appropriate.


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