Apeworld On Fire

A new adventure, a new thread. I'm preparing "Apeworld On Fire" for my group and I had a sudden realisation.

I've never done much with the future juncture, it never seemed very interesting to me. So having a pre-written adventure to show me what's cool about it is great.

However I'm having trouble with the logic of the setting. If the C-Bomb destroyed all Chi in the future juncture then surely that means that no Chi powers will work. Which will badly hose the majority of PCs. Have I missed something which explains how that works? Do the PCs pull Chi from their home juncture?

1 Like

If the C-Bomb had destroyed ALL chi, everyone would be dead. So there's still some chi.

In short: Chi powers all work normally.

1 Like

So, and this has nothing to do with Apeworld on Fire, would a sufficiently masterful geomancer be able to craft a building of such exquisite beauty and quality that it would be a meagre feng shui site? And in a era without any other such sites would the tiny improvement in fortune make the owners gods among men?

That sounds like a challenge for the Dragons and an excellent way to have everyone and their dog gunning for them and their homestead.


That's the first session done. Our Archer, Sorcerer, Sword Master and Martial Artist returned from Burning Dragon and were joined by a Maverick Cop. A character with a gun! The Archer was cock-a-hoop.

We played through the initial chase and found that we blasted through the 4 musketeers and Miami vice before the mooks from those junctures could act. We then spent the rest of the chase on Mars. So don't be surprised if you barely spend any time in some junctures.

The whole cavalcade through the Netherworld was certainly unexpected by my players.

Because I don't run chases very often I put together an equivalent to the turn tracker to allow me to track what was going on. That worked pretty well but I still need a cheat-sheet for things like crash damage. That and other little used rules.

I also created a named character worksheet for tracking their damage which worked well. It made me realise I also need one for tracking damage to vehicles because you have the added complication of chase points vs. actual damage.

Now that the PCs have arrived at the plot I'm looking forward to seeing what they do.


I made a 'Driving Rules' précis sheet for my own game, if that would be useful? It's a PDF, though, so I can't share it directly here. (Don't know if I'd be allowed to, admittedly!)

1 Like

We just finished running ApeWorld on Fire. Man what a blast. Although, I make things a little 'darker' this was the most fun our group have had with an adventure in FS2 yet. The car chase was a big hit, second only to the final battle which we had the entire party split across the city for.

Was thinking, the old app isn't going to be available on Android is it? Would be so handy. :slight_smile:


Wish we could! I use Android myself and would love to make more use of the app. But the framework it was built on ended up not being able to make the leap across platforms.

It's great to hear about your experiences with Apeworld!


I made a 'Driving Rules' précis sheet for my own game, if that would be useful? It's a PDF, though, so I can't share it directly here. (Don't know if I'd be allowed to, admittedly!)

I appreciate the offer but understand that allowing attachments on posts would be a security disaster. I'm sure I can work up my own cheat sheet.


My group has now managed to stagger their way around Waystation. I continue to have trouble running a prewritten adventure. I just don't know it like I do my own stuff. I find I often stumble over the problem that the characters do things in a different order to what the adventure expects so the signposts don't work. Or they are resolutely uninterested or fail to grasp the import of a particular encounter so don't interact with it.

I have to try and remember that the players haven't read the adventure so they don't know what's supposed to happen. Therefore as far as they are concerned whatever did happen was supposed to happen.

Still they were amused to discover the reverse key finder. A device to find your car, rather than one to find your keys. And there's always the deus ex machina which is Sibling to tell them what to do. Even if their shifting visage and mouth swapping sentences weirded everyone out.

They have just finished exploring the abandoned research facility and beating the tar out of bio-mechanoids. They found the moistness and pulsation of the environment particularly repulsive. For anyone coming after me as GM I would recommend having the Demon use it's special poisoning power straight away. I got distracted and didn't use it until it was half dead which really takes the ticking clock out of "must defeat this before the next key frame."

Also I think I should have have stretched out the exploration of the base rather than just taking them straight to the one location of import on each level. I think the model to follow is fairly clearly Aliens. "Looks like we've got some small arms fire here."


Hey, I'm running my two person group through Apeworld on Fire and while we're having fun I think the fights could use a little guidance on numbers and adjustments for smaller teams of PCs.

While Burning Dragon was quite clear about how many baddies to throw at your team (x # of Featured Foes/Mooks per PC) in each Fight, AoF sometimes doesn't even mention it.

As a result, I ended up with some STEEP odds against the PCs as things progressed, a fact that's as much due to my own short-sightedness as the text not always being clear. To recap our experience thus far for your consideration:

We had a Gene Freak and a Highway Ronin initially (with one vehicle). Even without worrying about opposition numbers, the car chase rules are not our favorite feature of 2.0 - they feel a little too fiddly compared to the rest of the system, and inevitably we end up getting confused by Crash vs. Chase Points and layering Impairment etc. Adding the wrinkle of 3 Era-Specific Mooks popping up as the chase progressed didn't ease things for me as GM, especially as it wasn't clear how said Mooks were keeping up with the speeding vehicles (I ended up giving many of them horses and so on, but when it all became a bit too much I had most of them fall behind). For all the confusion, though, the PCs came out of it OK.

They had a more enjoyable scrap with the two Strong Assassins they ran into at the Dreamstim Parlor - it escalated ridiculously but they came out of it with relatively few Wound Points.

They ended up going to the Architect facility next, and they had a good bit of hide-and-seek with the Nanostock Demon before it attacked them on the elevator. While they were able to quickly dispose of the Demon, those Augmented Wasters' Last Rally was absolutely brutal, and it ended up killing the Gene Freak. We chalked it up to the fortunes of war and wrapped up the first session on a downer note.

The fight that really kind of took the wind of out my sails, though, was the Market Attack. We started the second session with introducing a Full Metal Nutball (played by the Gene Freak player) as the Highway Ronin met with Sibling. As written, the fight doesn't make any clear suggestion on how many Foes to toss at your group, so I foolishly went with Network, Infinity AND two Magnetic Assassins, plus 6 Mind-Controlled Residents (3 per PC).

That was definitely a mistake, as having two more Featured Foes than PCs really reduced things to a Grind where our heroes managed to eventually take down Network but kept getting nickled-and-dimed by Infinity and those Magnetic dorks. I had Infinity run away and the surviving Assassin surrender once I realized my error but it still ended up with Wound Points in the 20s for our PCs. I'm just glad I didn't add a Strong Assassin - I had enough sense to know that was too much at least.

After the fight we took a long break and I came back a bit annoyed with myself and the uncertainty about the numbers. We ended up putting a pin in the adventure and just had a long good chat about life, which was great, but I felt obliged to check in here and let you know about my experience.

To clarify, we're really enjoying the subscription adventures so far. I appreciate the production values and the variety of storylines and characters offered, and I look forward to seeing how they approach the last act of AoF. I just wish I could have prepared better for a small group.

We chalked it up to the fortunes of war and wrapped up the first session on a downer note.

How long are your sessions? My group gets about 2 hours a week so we generally consider we've done well if we get through the connective tissue and a fight.

so I foolishly went with Network, Infinity AND two Magnetic Assassins, plus 6 Mind-Controlled Residents (3 per PC).

My players hated Infinity with a righteous fury as he kept taking all their weapons away and couldn't be hit.

I'm afraid I can't offer a lot of advice for a 2 PC group, I had 4 and used the numbers straight from the book. If I were you I would probably thin down where I had multiples of things. So for the market place, rather than throwing out a whole class of foe I would have reduced the number of magnetic irritations to one so I could have a single beef cake.

Thus when you get to the final confrontation in the lab you might want to give Ponteus Primate only one body guard.

And there ends my Wednesday group's adventure in Apeworld.

I found a few of issues with this. Primarily that there's a whole ellaborate system for them to generate destabilisation points and no obvious way to introduce that. I'm not a big believer in hidden systems, I think the players should know they are interacting with a system but the best I could come up with was just to tell them that there were these points. Having explained that you also pretty much have to explain why they should care so the table of infiltration has to be explained.

The previous session they had blown up the Gladiator Bowl on the basis that if blood sports are the opiate of the masses then taking it away should lead to some instability. They had worked out that could be to their advantage but of course that wasn't anticipated by the adventure so I had to make up a number.

Another wheeze they cam up with was Chinese lanters floated over the inner rings of Apeworld to drop propaganda leaflets urging the residents to follow their hearts and rejoin the Jammers. That can be reckoned using the numbers given in the adventure but I gave them more points because it was too fun to go unrewarded.

They continued to cause trouble for a bit and then I just announced that it was good enough for me and we would say they had 20 points.

I found this whole section a bit frustrating and once again betrayed my lack of preparation. It feels like this needs at 4 or 5 sub-adventures each culminating in destabilisation points. Basically the adventure becomes a campaign. So if you are running this you might want to put a couple of weeks aside to write missions to back up the single sentence descriptions in the adventure. Also take some time to think about how the PCs actually make contact with any of the people they are supposed to contact.

All-in-all I wasn't taken with the whole pixel-bitching destabilisation points. It didn't lead to compelling play which is why I short-circuited it. More preparation might have helped but we all have jobs and lives so have a limited amount of time to put into preparing to play.

It was around this point that they looked blankly at me, they didn't know where they were supposed to find the lab where they gas was being developed. It's at this point that I could only find one clue leading to the Pineal. So make sure your PCs are paying attention when they shake down the dreamstim parlour. Maybe have some other people know or, as in my case, just remind them that they have actually been told.

Then came the final confrontation in which Pontius Primate almost single handedly instigated a TPK. He's a beast! Doing the highest PC damage plus 1 every 2 shots is brutal. When I run it again I think I will say highest base PC damage so as to discount signature weapons and awesome Fu powers. We did manage to talk ourselves out of giving his assault rifle the martial artist's Dim Mak which is good because it would all have been over very quickly if we hadn't.

Two players can be quite hard to balance for a lot of FS2 stuff. But the usual guideline for a 'balanced' fight is an equal number of Featured Foes to PCs, with 3 mooks per PC (or more if you've got someone playing a Killer, to give them the numbers to make Carnival of Carnage look cool). I can imagine that four FFs would be a nightmare.

When running my own stuff I tend to be much looser on mooks.

I never have numbers of them. The fight starts with "hordes", "plenty", "lots", "loads" or some other description. As it progresses there pass through "fewer" towards "a handful". I work on the principle that there are always mooks around while the featured foes are up. Once the last falls the remaining mooks run away.

The trick then becomes how many to engage the PCs with at any one time and that's where the 3 or 4 per PC comes in.

1 Like

I guess that means that you never use the Ablative Lackey or Inspire Fanaticism Foe Schticks?

1 Like

Not so much. You can use them if only use them sparingly. However those schticks should be used sparingly anyway because there effect of "That damage you did? No you didn't" is very frustrating to players. It can be fun but it's a very occasional taste.

Apeworld on Fire has started for my other group. During the initial scene chase points were only being dished out in 3s and 4s so I lowered the threshold for switching junctures. I also noted on rereading that every change is supposed to go via the Netherworld. That didn't seems as fun as the historical junctures so I just narrated them flashing through the grey tunnels.

This time Dr Lundberg survived but will be recuperating at the Church of the C-bomb for the duration. That solves the problem of what to do with her.

Dropsy also survived so they got the information about his contact at Waystation. He too is laid up in the Church.

As the PCs arrived at Waystation covered in blood, most of it their own, it was easy to have the people manning the security checkpoint direct them to the Church.

Sister Tove was able to tell them about the previous scientist and her apparent visit to a dreamstim machine. When she found out they needed to infiltrate Apeworld she was able to directed them to Koko Channel so the players have two lines of enquiry to follow next week.


So the archaeologist, the masked avenger and the maverick cop decided to check out the Architects research base. I spent more time describing the corridors and having them find evidence of "bad things" having happened. Also they decided to go straight to the top and work their way down so they found the meat of the mainframe last.

I decided to place the final confrontation in the loading dock as they are trying to leave. So I was able to end the session with the picture of the nanostock demon.


The Nanostock demon fight was a complete meat grinder. This was not helped by players and GM forgetting that they had picked up healing potions last week. The archaeologist was particularly miffed at finding a foe who could whip her right back.

Still the imminent danger of a TPK lead to the beating a hasty retreat. Still they have taking a large wound at the start of the next fight to look forward to.

After another period of convalescence at the Church of the C-bomb they reported back to Koko about what they had found in the research base. She was concerned and organised a meating with Sibling. I got a laugh out of the beta black lotus and I've found that both groups enjoying seeing a mint or near mint programme from Burning Dragon 2021 in Sibling's cabinets of curios.

They chose to enter Apeworld through Murder Bowl as they unexpectedly decided they daren't risk revealing the escape route to the apes by using it the other way round.

There wasn't an obvious place to insert the market place fight this time round so they never discovered that route to entry.

Honestly, I think you're so convinced that this scenario is trying to railroad your players that you're struggling with the fact that it doesn't.

Blowing up the Gladiator Bowl? Chinese lantern propaganda drops? That sounds awesome! And is exactly the sort of player-initiated scheming that the Destabilization Points were designed to encourage.

You describe it as "pixel bitching," but the book is pretty explicit that it's exactly the opposite: None of the examples of potential DP gains given in the book are things the PCs NEED to do; they're all examples to guide you in deciding how many DPs to give the PCs for whatever it is they actually do.

And you're 100% correct in explaining the DP system to the players: No different than telling them that they'll be making a skill check. IME, it's rarely necessary in any RPG to hide mechanics from the players. You probably wouldn't even go amiss telling them the specific thresholds (6, 10, 20+) that they're aiming for.

Your games sound absolutely amazing! Your players are luck to have you running games for them!