Chasing The Sunset & Ocean Cruise

Chasing the Sunset is a West Marches-style exploration game using Fellowship 2nd Edition‘s Horizon rules.

The party: Buckle the Beast/Heart of Earth, Stella the Halfling/Hunter

Last time, the Fellowship escaped Vieport and reached the sea, so they can finally sail up the coast and find Kitty’s home: the Cracktooth Wastes.

Stella spends Halfing Packed Lunch to heal Gus, Kitty, Buckle

As they sail along the coast they see an island with stone structures being slowly washed away by the tide. no sign of life. They sail on.

The shore of the mainland becomes marshy, and they see a Platyperson on a raft in that marsh. A giant, albino Platyperson!

Stella: Look, it’s Pomplamoose!

Buckle: Please, that’s offensive.

They steer the Miranda towards the raft and ail the occupant. His name is Divot, and he’s a completely different giant albino Platyperson, not Pomplamoose at all. Buckle is like no Platyperson Divot has seen before: glowing orange fur with piercing white eyes.

Divot: What are they feeding you?

Buckle: Fish. What about you?

Divot gives Buckle an odd look and doesn’t answer. The Fellowship explains that they met Pomplamoose once and would like to see her again. Divot sends out a signal by slapping his flat tail against the water, and after a while, Pomplamoose arrives. She recognizes Stella, but not Buckle, who has changed greatly since their last meeting.

Pomplamoose: You finally arrived! Good thing I went on ahead.

Stella: Things came up. We had to take some detours.

Buckle: Now we’re taking another friend home.

He points to Kitty, the Tyrannosaur. Pomplamoose warns Kitty that the Fellowship might get distracted and leave her to find her own way home.

Stella: We didn’t leave you!

Divot: Wow, this is awkward. I thought since y’all were old friends with my kin, I’d invite you to tonight’s barbecue, but I see it’s not like that.

Buckle: Would you show us around for old times’ sake?

Pomplamoose: I don’t really want to.

Deflated, the Fellowship sails away and continues north along the coast. They pass a port city built on a river delta and enter the Straits of Trransmutation. The islands in the the straits are unnatural geometric shapes: cubes, spirals, spheres. The rocks are somehow smooth and shiny, perfectly shaped in a way that erosion or chisels couldn’t match.

Buckle is fascinated and leans over the railing to look closer, then falls overboard! The sea explodes in steam when his superheated body touches it and he starts sinking. Stella wants Kitty to help, but doesn’t speak Kitty’s language. She mimes fishing Buckle out of the water with a long tail. Kitty stares blankly at Stella, then nudges her with her tail. Stella yells at the companions who can understand her to form a chain and grab Buckle.

Stella Overcome 6-

Stella also falls in the water. As Buckle sinks, he sees weird twisted fishes swimming in the depths. Some have upside-down heads, extra fins, spiral bodies.

Buckle Wildspeaker: Beast understand you. Can Talk Sense to them.

Buckle asks the strange fish to carry him up to the surface.

Buckle Talk Sense 7-9

The fish can’t touch his super-heated body, but he’s attracted the attention of the Wizard who rules these islands: Mer-Lynn (she/her, mermaid) Mer-Lynn summons a spiral column of stone from the seabed that quickly rises under Buckle to carry him to the surface!

Buckle Get Away 7-9

The ride is so fast that Buckle is disoriented.

Buckle damages Grace

Once Buckle is safely back on board the Miranda, Mer-Lynn says she’s very impressed how far he’s transformed from a normal Platyperson. Mer-Lynn is obsessed with transmutation, turning things into other things. Buckle asks about her favorite creations, which is nice, because she lovesto talk about her work. She says she’s reached the limit of transmuting rocks and fish, and wants to take her work further, to transmute something’s nature, not just it’s shape. She offers to transmute the Fellowship, swapping one Stat or Move for something else, something unpredictable. There’s a small chance of being completely transmuted, losing all form and becoming a Chaos Beast, but only a small chance. She also wants to move to a location with more interesting subjects.

Buckle obliviously mentions that they’re going to a cool place with lots of dinosaurs. Stella doesn’t want Mer-Lynn to follow them and recommends the excitement of Vieport! So many people! Ghosts! Electric barriers! Hard light bridges!  Stella is more convincing, so Mer-Lynn decides to head south to Vieport.

Stella: I’ll call you a ride!

Stella Queen of the Wild: All Beasts are Companions

Stella calls up a “limo” fish that is extra long and has two sets of every kind of fin and orders it to carry Mer-Lynn to Vieport. The Miranda continues to sail north.

Next, the Miranda approaches a fortress built on the coast of a wasteland. Kitty recognizes this wasteland as home, so the Miranda sails towards the fortress.

Castellum lookout: They’re coming by sea now! Battle stations!

  • Castellum Lookouts, human
    • Powder keg: If this stat is damaged, the gunner explodes, causing
      collateral damage.
    • Sturdy Rifle: When the gunner has an open shot, they may damage this stat to immediately deal damage to anybody. If they can get some time and safety, they heal this stat.

The two lookouts on the eastern towers aim their guns at the Miranda, and there’s a commotion in the fortress.

Buckle: I’ll go talk to them.

Buckle jumps into the water, sinks to the bottom in a column of steam, and walks along the bottom to the fortress and climbs up on the dock. An intimidating display!

Buckle Finish Them (+Courage) 6-

Castellum Lookout damages Buckle’s Courage

The lookout isn’t frightened and fires at Buckle! Buckle is only knocked down. The bullet struck a book in Buckle’s vest pocket: Bleckenridge’s “You too can speak Dwarven!” Buckle takes out the book,which bursts into flame in his hand, and throws it towards the gunner and his explosive stash of gunpowder!

Buckle Finish Them (+Blood) 7-9

Buckle Damages Castellum Lookout’s Sturdy Rifle

The lookout on the other tower takes his shot!

Castellum Lookout #2 damages Sturdy Rifle to damage Buckle

Stella uses her telekinetic powers to push the Lookout’s gun away from Buckle and towards the other Lookout.

Stella Keep Them Busy 7-9 draw attention, face retaliation later

Buckle scales the fortress’s wall.

Buckle Overcome 7-9

Buckle Survivor: when you Overcome 7-9, you also Get Away 7-9

Buckle reaches the top of the wall without further harm. Now he can look down into the fortress. It’s not just a keep. There’s an entire town inside these heavy walls. Many soldiers are runnig out of buildings and mustering in the town square.  The towers on the landward side have ballistae (huge crossbows) mounted on top, and those ballistae and turning towards him.

Buckle: “Wait, this is all a misunderstanding!”

Buckle Finish Them (+Wisdom) 6-

The soldiers are not convinced! Stella drives the Miranda to the dock.

Stella: Blow it up!

Buckle runs towards the nearest ballista, leaving a trail of flammable oil.

Buckle Keep Them Busy 6-

The ballista fires at the Miranda!

Stella Get Away 7-9 avoid harm

Stella reaches the docks, where the walls of the fortress block line of sight from the ballista at the far side. The ballista bolt sails overhead. A War Wagon emerges, ready to join the battle. Alarms are ringing. People talk of invasion!

  • Halfling War Wagon: The War Wagon is a halfling carriage converted to war. Covered in spikes, it is mounted with a rock ballistae and a kitchen, for that extra taste of home.
    • Rock Ballistae: The War Wagon is Ranged, Dangerous, Reload.
    • Built For War: The War Wagon is Melee, Piercing.
    • Spiked Armor: Anyone trying to board the War Wagon or attack it with
      melee weaponry takes damage.

The door from the dock into the fortress is closed and barred, so Stella rides Silk up the wall.

Silk spends Wall Crawler

Buckle: You started this! Why?

Stella Address Book: Find a friend in any town & gain 1 Bond

Stella recognizes the machanic attending the War Wagon: a Halfling named Cam. During the Giant War, Cam was trapped inside a War Wagon that was flipped over, and Stella pulled him free.

Stella: Cam, it’s me, Stella! This is a big misunderstanding!

Stella Talk Sense (+Wisdom, appeal to emotion) 10+

Cam convinces the soldiers in the fortress to stop attacking, at least for a little while. Buckle hides under the Ballista, setting it on fire.

The commander of the fortress emerges and confronts Stella. Priscilla is a human woman in armor, resembling a Roman Centurion.

Priscilla: How can you justify yourself? Bringing a dinosaur here! Setting fire to our defenses!

Stella: Let’s be clear. You attacked us. You wouldn’t listen.

Buckle: (from under the ballista) We tried to tell you.

Stella: Why are you so afraid of dinosaurs?

Everyone within earshot laughs bitterly. Only a fool wouldn’t be afraid of dinosaurs. Priscilla explains that the dinosaurs in the Cracktooth Wastes constantly attack her fortress of Castellum, and their military might is necessary to prevent the town from being wiped out.

Stella: Have you asked them why? This sounds crazy. No beast attacks for nothing.

Buckle: (still hiding) You didn’t even talk to them?

Priscilla: Get out of my fortress! Go talk to the dinosaurs yourself, since you’re such good friends with beasts!

Stella agrees to leave and calls to Buckle, who scampers away.  They take the Miranda and land on the shore some distance away from Castellum.

Stella: Buckle, ask Kitty what all that was about.

Buckle Wildspeaker: Speak the language of beasts & monsters

Buckle does. Kitty explains that Snapjaw, a powerful Tyrannosaur, stirs up the dinosaurs against the humans.


  1. Did we thoroughly explore a new location? YES, Castellum
  2. Did anyone find what they were looking for? YES
  3. Did we learn something new about the world and its people? YES, transmutation magic

Three boons:

  • Heal: Buckle’s Courage, Buckle’s Grace
  • Heal: Buckle’s Wisdom, Buckle’s venomous spurs
  • Gear: Buckle’s Dragonfire, Stella’s Halfling Lunches