Thursday, February 25, 2016

BASHCon 2016 Wrap Up

BASHCon was a lot of fun, though the RPG component was pretty sparse. I think the only RPG event that wasn't Pathfinder or Peryton Affiliate game was a Marvel Supers game. I saw a pick up Paranoia in progress, but didn't get to play it. When I walked up to it I was like "Wow dude awesome, Paranoia. It's like one of my favorite, one of the best..." And the guy I said it to was like "Yeah, whatever, we're on break, beat it. You're annoying." So I slunked off.

I only played in one game, Robin's Crystal Rifts of Tartarus. This was a cool trip out to Pluto to fuck up a renegade faction of a MegaCorp's science outpost that was working with extra dimensional beings and Pluto's anti-living natives. She ran it using the Cypher system which I thought was pretty solid. Somewhere I had read that it was no great shakes, and sorta expected a D20 with extra stuff, but instead I found a neat little package. The spending ability scores at varying costs turned out to work fairly well. I think when I had read about the levels of difficulty shifting based on paying points that are also your hit-points my mind started to glaze over and I might've made a jerk off motion at the computer. I was wrong about that, it was easy and neat. Also liked the rolling dodges instead of the GM rolling hits. I'm not sure I'd ever run it, or even buy the book, but I'd definitely play it again. Still haven't decided on the "Blankety Blank who Blanks" character descriptor aspect. I was a "curious explorer who moves  like a cat." I can't figure out if it's cutesy and dumb, or just as good as any other way of giving a class combo. The adventure itself was a  nice combination of fighting and discovery with weird aliens.

I ran three games: Gimme Shelter using Tom's Crawlspace rules, Scream Bloody Gore with DCC, and Jupiter Mining Corp Disaster on Ganymede using a bastard Savage Worlds. Gimme Shelter went well, and I still haven't gotten sick of running it. Tom's UFOlogist ran behind a bus and turned invisible, stole squad car keys and an unmarked car, hit and ran some alien henchmen and staged a getaway in the most heroic action of the night. Jerry's Case Worker crawled to the bottom of the bottle but came out long enough to pick up all the other characters since he at least had a car. I don't know if Liam got that his character wasn't actually the mayor in a political sense, but Mayor of Edgewater Beach was just an honorific. But the character was supposed to be deeply delusional, so I guess this is what people mean when they talk about immersion. I didn't find out until days later that the alien ship summoned at the Rock Hall was a Boston Space Guitar, but, Randy, I'm glad it was.

Scream Bloody Gore I've written about here before. This game was made up entirely of Perytonians (Gimme Shelter on the other hand had one stranger) and was a blast. I had some second level pregens, the party ended up being a cleric, Dunston, Huggin the warrior, Decklin the Slick thief and Wizard Myria. Under cover of darkness the band arrived at a village plagued by maggot zombies. Their introduction to the situation was given by a priest tending to the funeral pyres of afflicted villagers, some who still were not dead at the time of their death. They stopped Priest Luckey from burning a baby, and demanded to know who was in charge. Dunston and Luckey shared the same god, Monolopopia, but Dunston was not familiar with this particular practice. The thief stayed with the baby while Jerry ran out for a minute and the rest of the party was taken to see Haskins, the head priest of the town. En route they were attacked by zombies and Liam got some maggots in his arm. Randy's quick witted cleric reacted with swiftness and amputated the infected limb. Liam's limbless warrior was maybe not as grateful as he could have been for the quick save, but the band played on. Around this time Jerry came back and we caught up with the thief and baby. The thief noticed maggots crawling under the skin of the swaddled lad, so he decided to leave it on the ground and make haste back to the group. This was good because you should never shake a baby. All in together, the band confronted Haskins in his shrine. Had they taken a more circuitous route, Haskins would have been like this guy:

And had killed himself to wield awesome power in undeath. But they caught him while we has making last minute preparations desecrations at the shrine to Monolopopia. The band thought Haskins was behind the maggot zombies though he was not. Still he was uncooperative because he was planning on committing ritual suicide to become an undead menace and gain unimaginable power. Soon a fight broke out and the band took charge. Once Haskins figured he was done for, he began chanting hoping Death by Cop counted as much as Hanging Oneself from a Tree in the many thousand eyes of the dark mad gods. Robin's Myria blasted him with a color spray and stopped the winging it ritual in its tracks. Soon villagers started creeping around, and perhaps somewhat surprisingly if you believe social behavior is rational, did not take well to being told their spiritual leader did not have their best interests at heart. At this point just more than an altar boy Luckey got killed, and the burning of the shrine really pissed off the town, and the villagers attacked. They then were slaughtered. At this point Haskins came to and continued his chant. Myria Charmed Haskins and a villager, and defused the situation. Here began an investigation into what was causing the zombie infestation. A few dead villagers and a not grateful enough populace later the band decided to just get the hell out of Dodge. As they left the village they came to a burning field filled with demons, and that's where we ended.

Sunday wrapped up with Jupiter Mining Company Disaster (on Ganymede). I ran this using the goofy Saveage Worlds Funnel random character generation I tlaked about here. They attribute rolling was unwieldy, unituitive and stupid. Afterwards Robin came up with what I think is a much better solution:
For each ability score roll a d4, d6, d8, d10 and d12. Record which die has the lowest result.
That should work much better and I plan on trying that out soon.
Once we got rolling the adventure went alright, but I sorta fucked up the pacing. I think for the most part people liked the tone, that of Paranoia/Red Dwarf/Black Mirror being about how work sucks. Unfortunately I didn't kill off enough people quick enough, and had two maybe villains which is too much for an under four hour con game.

I'm going to be coming back to Scream Bloody Gore and Ganymede. I think Scream Bloody Gore could work nicely as a funnel. Will report back when I have more.

Here's a photo Tom took of the Crawlspace game. I'm the tubby guy in the white shirt.


Randy Market said...

really fun times playing your games!

Christina Lea said...

"Blankety Blank who Blanks character descriptor aspect ... I can't figure out if it's cutesy and dumb, or just as good as any other way of giving a class combo."

I guess I'd say it's all of the above. Phrasing it the way they do is a gimmick, but "Set of Modifiers + Type + Special Ability" is a handy enough way to come up with a variety of character options quickly.

Beckett Warren said...

I should probably try reading a rule book one of these days before forming my opinions.