An excerpt from the Diablerie LARP Season 1 Finale, shared with permission from Forager Business Collective.
Diablerie LARP is a game that is played simultaneously on-site and online. Online players have access to an audio and video feed of the on-site characters and a shared in-game Discord channel. The online characters are presented with their own modules and puzzles that intersect with the on-site modules to create a shared game. Damage and Madness from each attack and skill effect is drawn by the managing staff member from a pre-made deck of cards. The game also makes use of Tasked Characters (TCs) who have agreed to take on certain responsibilities and roles during the game but otherwise maintain autonomy over their characters.
By the time the players reach this module, the on-site characters have spent the duration of this game locked in an apartment, attempting to find an escape before ghosts and demons return to feast upon their souls. This scene is meant to be a climatic fight scene with puzzle elements.
The on-site characters discovered that Crow, the demon intending to devour them, is gaining strength from a supernatural connection to a human’s Living Heart and were given the option to kill that person to weaken Crow. In addition, the online characters were given an option to make a pact with Crow, gaining the demon’s assistance in confronting some of their foes but ultimately strengthening Crow. Each character who has made such a pact with Crow now counts as a Living Heart for the purposes of this scene.
This scene begins immediately when the characters trigger Crow’s ritual circle intentionally or otherwise.
Crow (they/their) – A recurring demon adversary bent on destruction
Amalgam (it) – An amalgamation of tortured souls bound together by dark magic and under Crow’s control. Its only desire is to devour more souls to increase its strength. The souls within the Amalgam are no longer sentient and feel only unceasing pain.
As this scene begins Crow’s circle lights up and comes to life. Crow has sensed that something is wrong and appears in their circle with the Amalgam. While the on-site PCs must confront Crow and the Amalgam in this scene, the online players are simultaneously being presented with a puzzle to allow them to unsummon the Amalgam to help the on-site PCs.
I. THE AMALGAM
The Amalgam can easily be taken down, but can consistently be resurrected at full health by Crow on their turn. The Amalgam cannot cross into Crow’s circle.
The Amalgam has the following features:
- 10 Health
- If the characters assembled the Artifact to attract the Amalgam, the Amalgam will ALWAYS attack the person closest to the Artifact so long as the Artifact remains assembled.
- If not otherwise compelled by the completed Artifact, The Amalgam must attack a different character every turn.
- Ability: Claws (Melee Attack) – Determine damage using a deck created from the following table:
- Ability: Voidstep – In addition to normal movement on its turn, once per round at the end of any player’s turn the Amalgam may move next to any character. Its movement should be jerky and inhuman.
- Ability: Devour – If any character becomes unconscious or dead in the Amalgam’s presence, the Amalgam must focus on the fallen character and attempt to Devour them. Devour takes three turns and is roleplayed by the Amalgam crouching over the fallen player and acting as if they are tearing into them with one of their faces. If a character is successfully Devoured for three turns, they have become Comatose and should be given a final “death” scene.
- The first time the Amalgam is reduced to 0 Health in this fight, it will drop a Knight chess piece.
NOTE: During the course of this scene, the online players will likely be trying to unsummon the Amalgam. The online staff member will inform the on-site staff member overseeing the combat. The next time the Amalgam is dropped to 0 Health, it cannot be Revived by any means.
As per the Episode Zer0 plot, Crow cannot be touched while in their circle and will not willingly leave it so long as it is intact. Any character attempting to cross the circle takes 1 Madness and their movement automatically stops. They cannot cross over. In addition, the character attempting to cross the circle has visions of one of the cities Crow has destroyed as drawn from the Madness Deck. Any attempt to attack the circle itself results in the damage being reflected back on the attacker in addition to the 1 Madness incurred from touching the circle.
To break the circle, the characters must solve a chess puzzle to open the “For Emergencies Only” Box found in the apartment earlier in the game. The Box has a 3×3 chess grid on top. There are three Knights scattered throughout the apartment, which players will likely have found earlier in the evening. The fourth will be dropped by the Amalgam the first time it is reduced to 0 Health. The note on the Box will indicate that, to open the Box, the characters must place the four Knights in the corners of the grid with the white knights in the left two corners and the black knights in the right two corners. Then, only using legal chess moves, the characters must move the pieces so that the black knights and the white knights trade sides of the board and all land on corner squares. No piece may capture another piece and no two pieces can occupy the same space. If combat is occurring, a person may make 3 chess moves per turn. The players can reset the board and start over at any time.
Once the puzzle has been completed, the Box can be opened. Inside the Box is a ritual candle and instructions to break a demon’s circle. Once the Circle is broken, Crow can be attacked as normal.
Crow has the following features:
- 10 Health
- Damage reduction -2 if one or more Living Heart exists. If no Living Heart exists, Damage Reduction -1.
- If a Living Heart is in the room, Crow will attempt to defend them if they are threatened, or will direct the Amalgam to do so.
- Ability: Revive Amalgam – If the Amalgam has reached 0 Health, Crow can spend their attack action to instantly return it to full health and remove any status effects on the Amalgam.
- Ability: Sunder Reality (Ranged attack) – Takes three turns to charge (Charge 1, Charge 2, Charge 3, Turn 4 Attack), reduced by 1 turn for each Living Heart, down to a minimum of 1 turn to charge prior to each attack. If Crow takes any action other than continuing to charge this attack, the charge is interrupted and must be restarted from Turn 1. Upon completing the charge, Crow may deal 2 Physical Damage and 2 Madness to any one player they can see.
- Ability: Soul Rending (Melee Attack) – Can only be used once the Circle is down. Effects are drawn from a deck consisting of the following cards:
III. SLEEPER AGENTS
If any of the on-site players made a deal with the Voice In The Dark (VITD) and became Sleeper Agents at the start of the game, VITD possesses them as soon as Crow’s circle goes down.
Possessed Sleeper Agents have the following stats:
- +2 Total Health and +2 Current Health over the PC’s normal stats
- Ability: Dark Magic (Ranged Attack) – Works as per a Gun attack with +1 Damage
- The Sleeper Agents retain access to all of their skills from their character sheet.
- The Sleeper Agents must target Crow exclusively, must attack Crow every turn, instantly die when Crow dies, and cannot be Revived using medical skills.
- Crow defeated the PCs but the Amalgam was unsummoned:
Crow cackles and says “You’re all a riot, I’ll play with you a bit longer before I leave.” Crow strings up a consenting Character to be tortured in front of the cameras, claiming that the character is “their new vessel”. The remaining on-site characters are left to bleed to death unless the online players take action to intervene.
- Crow defeated the PCs and the Amalgam is still present:
The Amalgam begins to Devour PC souls one at a time while Crow forces the remaining characters to watch, helpless. Crow should begin trying to negotiate a deal with the characters to avoid everyone’s imminent destruction. Any character can use the Diablerie skill to try and strike deals at this time. (A Tasked Character will monitor the Discord chat and signal Crow if any of the online players want to make a deal). Additionally, a character with the Séance skill can choose to sacrifice themself to trap the Amalgam in their body, preventing it from escaping into the outside world.
A. If none of these strategies are effective, the Amalgam Devours everyone, then leaves the apartment, free to destroy the surrounding city.
B. If someone chooses to absorb the Amalgam, it “wilts” in agony, the smoke machine activates, and the Amalgam fades out of game. Then follow the same steps in “Aftermath 1” above.
C. If a character uses the Diablerie skill and strikes an effective deal with Crow (one that seems like a significant sacrifice and also gets Crow what they want), Crow leaves, taking that character and Amalgam with them (if the Amalgam has not been unsummoned or absorbed in the meantime).
3. The PCs defeat Crow and the Amalgam is also unsummoned:
Crow pleads not to be banished. They explain that earth is a lot like heaven for Demons, and they enjoy the human race very thoroughly for being so wonderfully passionate, wicked, and unpredictable. In exchange for being spared, Crow will promise to destroy the group that trapped the players in this apartment.