Monday, February 6, 2012

Owlcon Wrap Up - The Games I Played

I'm home with a sick kid and I'm not feeling too great myself, so I figured before I go into write-ups of my two Feng Shui games, I'll give a bit of a shout-out to the two games I got to play in.

The first was Where No Man Has Gone Before.  It's a Microlite d20 adaptation of classic "Star Trek," available online for free in a couple of places, including as a spiffy PDF called "Far Trek."  I originally signed up for it because I liked the concept and because a friend from Austin was running it.  Then, my friend had to back out, but Owlcon found someone else to run the game (though it was a different adventure).  I played a 2nd level Blue Shirt (did I mention your shirt color is also your character class?), a Tellarite doctor whose name I've sadly already forgotten. 

We were Starfleet cadets on our graduation mission and, of course, things went wrong.  The adventure itself was interesting, and certainly in keeping with the tone of the original show, but I had a couple of minor quibbles.  First, there was what amounted to a dream sequence where we were on a gigantic 3-D chess board and could only move in the fashion of the chess pieces we were assigned.  This was kind of neat, but the GM broke out three chess boards and set them up and had us move until one PCs figured out a way to break the rules.  I'm not much of a chess player, so I pretty much deferred to the other players' advice when moving, which felt terribly passive.

Also, the "Big Bad" was my PCs own personal nemesis.  If we'd been short-handed and if no one picked that character, it would have been kind of weird.

Finally, and this had nothing to do with the GM or the adventure, the last guy to show up for the game (about ten minutes late) got stuck with the last choice character, a female security officer.  He not only fulfilled all of the bad stereotypes of a male gamer playing a female character (including slutting her up at every turn), but he was also an inveterate gun-bunny, who had no desire to set his phaser on stun.  And he was, of course, obnoxiously loud about it.  But, that's convention games for you.

The other game was Werewolf: the Forsaken, an adventure called "Little Orphan Azlu."  Long-time readers of this blog or folks who know me online may be aware of the fact that I owned tons of World of Darkness stuff, but had never managed to actually play a WoD game.  Ever.  I'd created characters for a couple, but those games folded before they ever got off the ground.  So, it was with some trepidation that I looked at the slot for Saturday afternoon's Werewolf offering while picking up my pre-reg packet and noted that only three people had signed up for the game.

(I got even more concerned when I got to the room a little early and found a group of people setting up a board game, but it turned out they'd mistakenly been told the room was available.)

As it was, the game not only made, but filled.  I played a motivational speaker named Alexander Hope who had the interesting mix of high personal charisma and the ability to be practically unseen, even vanishing in a crowd.  The adventure was a fairly simple one.  All of the children in our town had vanished and we believed they were being held by Azlu in an old orphanage on the edge of town.  We had to gather information and resources, then assault the place.  In the early stages, I re-conned the surroundings, and during the attack, led a stealth team in, and then spent the rest of the adventure rescuing children from Azlu webbing in wolf form while the rest of the group fought and bled.  The game ran right up to the time limit (a fight featuring 7-8 werewolves and about a dozen Azlu was quite time-consuming) and we ended up narrating the end, but we were successful, and I can finally check "Play a WoD game" off my to-do list.

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