Saturday, September 19, 2009

Derailed by Game Night

So I checked out the weekly Thursday indie/small press game night in Falls Church, at the Compleat Strategist.
It was awesome.

I played Spirit of the Century - amazing! I don't have too much time to get into a whole thing about how it went, but to be fair, we didn't get much further than character creation before I had to jet. Still, the highly collaborative nature of character creation was some hot bees, lemme tell ya. Also, my character was based very heavily on the Kriegaffe from the Hellboy comics - imagine a steampunk cyborg ape, raised by Nazis. Good times.

I also just got Shock: Social Science Fiction (v. 1.2), which looks really exciting - the references to Children of Men (see it!) make it all the more interesting for, like Ron Edwards said, doing sci-fi where the fiction is really about something cool and meaningful (that's more or less what
he said).

Looking back at how Questing Beast went - the players came up with interesting characters, and we spent two hours with a Saxon raid on a village. I wasn't a huge fan of the highly individualized chargen, which sabotaged our brainstorming on how to include the characters in each others' sagas.
The very concept of parallel, individual sagas (Polaris does this too, though I haven't played it yet and can't materially claim that this is what it does in practice) feels like the antithesis of the "Guest Starring..." feature in SotC's chargen - you actually devise some adventure that your protagonist has already gone through, and you randomly determine another protagonist who "guest stars" in your tale. It's totally badass, and really draws the characters together (not to mention taking full advantage of the whole group's creativity; wha-chaa!)

We have another session tomorrow; I'll see what the group thinks of the game so far, how they rate it, likes and dislikes, etc., and then see how the session goes, if we end up doing it.
I say "if" because SotC really opened up my head and showed me cool new things you can do with an RPG to get that creativity pot bubbling; I may buy Dogs in the Vineyard soon to check out their sweet, awesome see-and-raise conflict resolution rules, which sound really neat.


  1. I absolutely love Spirit of the Century, I picked it up at Gen Con after hearing all the praise and recently (about a week and a half ago) did character creation for it. I've read the book front and back, and I'm in love. Aspects are such an interesting mechanic.

  2. I need to really get a better command of the rules before I could describe actual play to anyone.
    I do know that having my Nazi gorilla-bot character, who has "one foot in the Green" (as in, one foot in nature and one foot out of it) as an aspect, managed to earn himself a Fate chip (is that what they're called?) by pointedly acting shy and tentative in a social situation. Dr. Flash bulldozes right past poor Kriegaffe to say hello to the antiquarian, leaving the big ape to sulk and feel sorry for himself.
    Good times ^_^ I only wish I'd managed to stick around long enough for some real moment-to-moment RPing instead of just the setup. Next time, SotC, next tiiiime!