Saturday, July 21, 2018

A Matter of Space and Time (MHRPG Solo Playthrough)

A quick scene in the Marvel Heroic Roleplaying System starring Jane Foster as Thor using Mythic GME and the Morning Coffee Solo Variations mod!

Jane Foster, lying in a hospital bed undergoing chemo, is met by Mjolnir moments before a city-wide power outage. There's already a thunderstorm under way but, for the villains who would seek to escape their confines, it's about to get a whole lot worse...
Jane's Mythic list: Odinson, Avengers, Falcon, Malekith, Loki, Asgardia, Roxxon, Dario Agger, Roz Solomon
Jane's Mythic threads: Beating cancer, proving worthy or Mjolnir

SCENE ONE PROPOSAL: Thor arrives on the flight deck to battle Count Nefaria.
MCSV Chaos Factor: Out of Control/d8
MCSV Chaos Roll: [4] Interrupt
RANDOM EVENT CONTEXT: Jane is rushing to the Raft because of the massive electrical disturbance.
INTERPRETATION: Well, Jane's war is obviously the War of the Realms, and someone whom she trusts, or who trusts her, is in trouble... which is most likely Roz Solomon. So perhaps Mjolnir isn't here to take Jane to the Raft but to somewhere else because Roz is in trouble?

MCSV ORACLE QUESTION #1: "Is the location on Earth (as opposed to another realm, which we can use a d8 to determine)?" (Chaos die is d8, Odds are Likely/3+) [c3 o2] "No, but... still in this realm, so, maybe space or another planet. I think a SHIELD space station makes sense, so the Peak (SWORD's HQ).

MCSV ORACLE QUESTION #2: "Is the Peak under attack?" (Chaos die is d8, Odds are Likely/3+) [c2 o6] "Yes, and... it's losing orbital momentum which will cause it to hit atmosphere very shortly."

MCSV ORACLE QUESTION #3: "Is it a Hydra attack (if not, we'll determine some sort of supervillain)?" (Chaos die is d8, Odds are Fifty-Fifty/4+) [c5, o4] "Yes."

DOOM POOL: 2d10 (Catastrophic)
SCENE DISTINCTIONS: A Matter of Space and Time, State of the Art Facility
Jane notices the breakout occurring but is whisked away through the clouds to lower orbit where the Peak is visibly damaged and in serious trouble. She weaves her way through floating debris and aboard via an emergency airlock, where she is immediately met with a squad of Expert HYDRA Troopers (Mob Team d8x3)...
Jane: "Have at thee!" [Total: 22 w/ d12, d8, d6 to deal P-Stress] vs. Mob "Is that... Thor Girl?" [Total: 8 w/d8]
The HYDRA Troopers are totally overwhelmed by Mjolnir's antics and unable to even fire a shot before the fall to the deck!
...Proceeding through the halls, dispatching HYDRA agents with her hammer as much as her reputation, Jane eventually ends up in the Main Hangar Bay where there's a much larger mob led by a Madame Hydra herding shackled SWORD agents, among them Roz Solomon, onto a HYDRA transport ship...
Madame Hydra: "Careful, girl - they're not wearing masks!" [Total: 14 w/d10 to put a complication on Jane] vs. Thor "Villain...what do you want?" [Total: 8 w/d4]
Jane now has a complication =HOSTAGES= at d10!
Roz: "Thor! Don't worry about us! It's-" (KO'd with a pistol butt by Madame Hydra)
Jane: "(rushing in to appear next to Madame Hydra as she looks up from hitting Roz)" [Total: 19 w/d10 to cause M-Stress on Madame Hydra] vs. Madame Hydra [Total: 12 w/d10]
Madame Hydra is properly intimidated by the abilities of the Goddess of Thunder... but she's still Madame Hydra - "It doesn't matter - you're too late!"
Watcher spends 2d12 to end the scene
The station creaks and groans as it begins re-entry into Earth's orbit! What will Thor do, and what could this have to do with the War of the Realms?!

Sunday, November 6, 2016

The Omega Girl: Chapter One - Who You Callin' Crazy?

November 4th, 20XX
Location: Urban/Suburbs
Weather: [6] Bright Sunny Day, +1 Luck for the day
Encounter Counter (roll of this or less means an encounter): 1 [7]
Starting Food/Drink: 1/1

So this morning was the first sunrise I've seen in ages. Being stuck in that smelly compound was great for safety from crazies and... well, it was safe from crazies. Wasn't the best for fresh air and exercise, you know? Turns out something got in - probably some moron leaving the airlock open again - and things got even more stinky than usual. Like a big hole full of sick people coughing, wheezing, and excreting bodily fluids from various orifices kind of stank. Of course that turned pretty rapidly into the smell of rotting bodies so maybe I need to better appreciate the small things. Like how I'm apparently immune to the Sick (that's what we called it - the Sick is the flu that wiped almost everyone out a while back). Yay for me!

What's a gal to do in a compound-turned-mausoleum? Grab a gun and skedaddle, that's what. This jerkface Vincent told us all off about a week ago and made a break for it through the main doors before we could stop him. Not that I wanted to - if you want to go play with the crazies I'm cool with that. Best guess is that he ran East, so that's where I'm headed. I might find him and hurt him a lot, or we might become besties. I don't really plan ahead.

Anywho. I found a bombed out gun store on the outskirts of town - I know right?! Small thing: appreciated. Nothing of use there except some fancy new clothes for Dolly - a grip, some sights, a sling. All very posh. She looks way hawt now. She's single but as soon as the right guy shows up she's going to be all over him like an automatic assault rifle. Which makes sense, I guess. Because she is - but don't bring it up. She's sensitive about that sort of stuff.

After clothes shopping, we hit up a not-totally-destroyed restaurant. Best I can tell from the letters left on the sign, it used to be a Taco Bowl. Further supporting evidence includes finding a fairly delicious stash of unopened tortilla shells, Taco Bowl brand flavored water (assorted flavors but jalapeno is totes my favs), and a stack of mostly-clean TB uniforms I used as padding for a lovely little sleeping nest. No sombreros yet though - something to look out for, I suppose. I also rigged up the stove again. It needs wood or something to burn but hey... tacos. Can't argue with that!

Sleep time. Maybe. Dolly snores something awful when she eats spicy foods...

Concept: Felicita will be a young woman who is the remaining survivor of a guerilla camp. Flu-like symptoms took over the entire group and all died in a matter of days, leaving Felicita with her choice of supplies... and no small amount of sorrow or trauma and she carried it past, or removed it from, the bodies of her fallen comrades. That was a week ago. Her knowledge of the world is largely framed by her experience since the Virus, meaning a close adherence to assymetrical strategies in and out of combat for longterm survival. She mourns the loss of her 'family' but was well-prepared to strike out on her own. With the colder weather coming (as evidenced by a recent blizzard), however, she needs to establish her own base of operations before too long. I'll use the Guerilla stats for her and see how that works out, and maybe I'll roll on the Relationships table to see how she relates to poor Vince (who may just be very badly frozen instead of straight up dead if story requires it...). I'll need a name for this city eventually...

Step 2, 3: 12pts to assign to Traits, (Brains x 6)pts to Skills
Agility 4
-Acrobatics 1
-Larceny 2
-Range 3
Brains 3
-Build 1
-Medecine 1
-Science 1
Constitution 3
-Drive 1
-Melee 1
-Survival 2
Demeanor 2
-Leadership 2
Stealth 4
Perception 3
Athletics 3
Socialize 2

Step 4:
Speed = 7
XP = 3
Carry = (/18)
Luck = (2/2)
Defenses = Block (1), Dodge (1), Reflex (3)
Health = Head/Arms/Legs (3/3/3), Torso (6)
Weapon ATK = (Melee or Range + whatever mods)
Psyche = 2 dots from crazy

Step 5: Abilities (use Brains x 6=18)
[3] Favorite Weapon (AK-47)
[3] Weapon Training (+1ATK for AK-47)
[9] Recoil Compensation (ignore Rapid RATK penalties)
[3] Cold Acclimated (+1hr CR)

Step 6: Gear
Clothes, Backpack, Knife, Food can, Water bottle
Armor = Cargo Pants (6x1, AR1, Sz1, Legs), Hiking Boots (AR2, Sz2, Legs, CR, FR, Tread 3)
Melee Weapons = Machete (DMG3, Sz2, Chop)
Ranged Weapons = AK-47 (DMG8, RngL, Sz4, 2h, Rapid, 7.62, 30/30) w/ Suppressor (9# Perception to hear, silent beyond RngS, Sz1)
MGL = [6, 3, 6] Toy car (6rnds@Speed10 on flat surface, Sz1), [6, 1, 3] Suppressor
Total Weight = AK-47 [4] + Toy car [1] + Machete [2] + Cargo Pants [1] + Hiking Boots [2] + Knife [1] + Food Can [1] + Water Bottle [1] + 50rds 7.62 FMJ [1] = 14/18

Relationship to Vince: [4,1] Had a falling out. That works well since Vince woke up with amnesia. Maybe he used to run with the same group but left weeks ago, basically earning a little vendetta on himself from anyone who happened to spot him. I'm not even sure she'll ever actually discover him but maybe a cute reference or something would be alright.

Felicita Rada Pesty
(Italian "happiness", Russian "happy, willing", Hungarian "from Pest, which in turns means furnace, oven")

November 4th, 20XX
Location: Urban/Suburbs
Weather: [6] Bright Sunny Day, +1 Luck for the day
Encounter Counter (roll of this or less means an encounter): 1 [7]
Starting Food/Drink: 1/1

000-0600: Sleep 6hrs (8 total)
0600: Explore the outskirts! Found... [2, 5] a GUN STORE!
((Wow, okay. So when I don't load up the characters, they die before finding cool stuff (except that one time my guy found an ice axe - those are amazing weapons) but when I bend the rules a little... they find buildings full of guns. Good to know. Is it looted already though? I feel like it probably is...))
Perception vs. 6# to spend 15min to find something... [4]+3... Found [4] of [5] GUN ACCESSORIES.
((I rolled to see what of the three categories we'd find something in, and then since there are 10 items in that category I rolled a d10 four times to see what came up.))
Felicita found: [10] a Three-Point Sling, [7] a Laser, [6] a Holosight, and [4] a Foregrip.
((None of these add Size to the weapon and all are helpful, so I'll grab them all! Let's see if we find anything else...))
Perception vs. 6# to spend 15min to find something... [2]+3... Nothing!
((No worries. We're really loaded for some gunslingin' now! Being aware of how quickly the weather can kill us now, and also RPing that Felicita is looking to establish a base, it makes sense to get to work on that soon. We need food and water but the base is probably more important. Let's see what building is near the gun shop that we might be able to use - the shop might be too high-profile for hiding.))
0630: Explore the area for a better base... [4, 6] a Restaurant.
((Hmm. Might have some food, and certainly has something we can use for a Stove - we'll roll on the MCSV Oracle for that one.))
Perception vs. 3# to spend 15min to find something... auto-success!... Found [2] of [2] Food.
Perception vs. 6# to spend 15min to find something... auto-success!... Found [6] of [2] Food.
Perception vs. 6# to spend 15min to find something... auto-success!... Found [3] of [4] Water.
Perception vs. 6# to spend 15min to find something... auto-success!... Found [4] of [2] Food.
((Okay, that's definitely enough for a couple days. We can search more later if needed. Now a Stove. I'm going to rule that if you can make one out of parts, you can make one out of an industrial oven just as easily, but Insulation and Fuel/Wood and all the other things - except a bed, which should totally be made out of booth parts. I will, however, let Felicita take the TIME to build each, so that'll be considerable. We'll save the Oracle for later though because I'm sure we'll need it.))
0730-1930: Building a WOOD STOVE
1930-2230: Building a BED
2230-0000: Sleep 1.5hrs
Ate/Drank?: 1/1

...and now we meet who I sincerely hope will be our main character, Felicita. Who knows what wacky hijinks are in store?!

Me. I do. And they are so wacky. Much wack.

With Brightest of (Taco Bowl Jalepeno-Flavored Water) Greens,

Saturday, November 5, 2016

The Omega Girl: Epilogue - Birth Of A Dead Man, pt. 3 (Apocalyptia Solo Playthrough, SGAM 2016)

November 2nd, 20XX
Location: Station
Time: 0600
Weather: Beautiful sunny day (+1 Luck)

While sleep did not come easy for Vincent, it did eventually come - followed by hunger. The cold was bearable under a bright sun but he wasted no time in securing food and water before gathering materials to better insulate his tiny shelter against the elements. Sadly, there wasn't much left to do afterwards but attempt another uneasy slumber. It was an uneventful day and he somehow feels uneasy about his luck. How long until it runs out altogether?


We have two main goals for today - foraging for food and water, and insulating the backroom. Bonus goal of gathering some parts for a wood stove and starting to store wood to burn. First run lasts 2hrs and nets... actually I'll use that bonus Luck point to get an exploding 6, followed by a 1, which if a definite success netting me 5 Water. Again, spending (ouch!) 6hrs, burning a Luck point to get 5 Food. Well... not bad, but it's now 1400hrs and we'll eat one of those meals and bring the other 4 sets back to base.

1415: Raid some more cars for insulation. Takes 2hrs to get 2 parts. Again, 2hrs for 1 part. Again, 2hrs for 2 parts. One more time for 1hr and 3 parts. Bring those back to base and put it with the others, now a pile of 14 parts. It's 2115hrs. Time for bed.


Not long, is the answer.

With Brightest of (don't worry, it'll get better... sort of) Greens,

Thursday, November 3, 2016

The Omega Girl: Epilogue - Birth Of A Dead Man, pt. 2 (Apocalyptia Solo Playthrough, SGAM 2016)

November 1st, 20XX
Location: Hospital
Time: 1200

There are many modern horror cliches that never seem to lose their appeal. Waking up confused in a deserted hospital may just be the best - but for Vincent Kruger, it's more than just cliche... it's his life right now. He stumbles down through the empty halls and stairwells carrying an odd assortment of gear, including in-line skates, desperately looking for anything that might help remind him of who he is, why he's here.

He finds nothing.

Breaking open the doors to the street, he is met with the first flash of memory - the world has changed. He knows this deep inside, like how everyone seems naturally afraid of the dark. Like it's some sort of primal warning signal that we can't always describe but we know it when we feel it. Vincent looks up and down the ruined street. It's all a giant maze of decrepit buildings and rusted out vehicles. Thick undergrowth is everywhere, breaking up through the asphalt and crawling up the faces of every standing structure. Instinctively, he breaks into the nearest automobile, hoping to find something that will jar his foggy memory. He finds, instead, a tattered notebook, some painkillers, and a multi-tool all in the glovebox. Some things will prove more helpful than others.

Treading carefully down the street, taking cover where it may be found and already wondering about starting a fire in this light rain, Vincent sees the first recognizable set of buildings - a strip mall. Isn't it funny what things survive the apocalypse? Consumerism never dies. The door is either unlocked or so rusted out that the lock disintegrates immediately, and he begins to take a cursory examination for anything still left. Food and water are always priorities though he's unsure exactly why he knows this. Vincent leaves an hour later, weighed down with some unexpected but very welcome finds. Next on his list is shelter for the coming night.

A blasted out gas station will work well enough. He begins rummaging through the rubble and making a small nest for himself out back. Depositing some of his gear in the back room, Vincent sets out to find suitable materials for a bed - a small comfort in this wasteland. Perhaps even more important now that the days are growing shorter and the nights colder. He succeeds but it takes most of the evening and his last thoughts before drifting off are of insulation and a stove. He'll need both to last long...


November 1st, 20XX
Location: Hospital rooftop
Time: 1200

Third Shift (1201-1800): Perception vs. 6# for fifteen minutes to scavenge (50/50 chance to find either MEDICAL supplies or Chemicals). [2] Well that's a failure (RAW say the first failed Perception roll means I'm convinced there's nothing left worth searching for. Sure.). Guess I'll head on out into the street and see if I can find anything in one of the cars. That's Perception vs. 1# because we're absolutley in an Inner City. [3] Notebook. Never too late to keep a diary, I guess. What else? [4] Multi-Tool. Okay, that might be useful. [4] Six Painkillers. Awesome. Clearly I was looking in the wrong place for medical stuff earlier.

We're at 1300hrs, so let's check another building. The next viable building is... [5,5] a Strip Mall. Didn't see that before. Hmm. Okay, let's get ta lootin'! This is a 3# and we roll a [3] and find 30 items from the MGL... in just the first fifteen minutes! That's... a lot of rolling. Wow. Okay, well it wasn't cannibals so that's good news and I won't be able to carry it all anyway. Looks like I found:

1. Monocular
2. Padlock
3. Megaphone (YES.)
4. Luxury Item (that's four 4's in row for the red die, btw)
5. Tactical Vest
6. Fire-stick
7. Knee Pads
8. Norinco SKS (we'll call it fully-load with ten rds 7.62 JHP
9. Purse
10. Coveralls
11. Mylar Blanket (this was all three 4's)
12. Lantern
13. Crowbar
14. Surgery Kit (confirmed)
15. Pitchfork (um... wut?)
16. Poncho
17. 9mm AMMUNTION (3) > 25rds FMJ
18. Machete
19. Rope
20. Hacksaw
21. Road Flare
22. Knife (almost a complete set!)
23. Winter Coat
24. Speed-loader
25. Tool Belt
26. Shovel
27. Air Horn (AND a megaphone?!)
28. Water Filter
29. RARE WEAPON (36) > Bolas (...lame)
30. Running Shoes

Okay, so I'm a little crazy (makes roleplaying easier that way) and I'm kinda thinking I want to grab the rifle, megaphone, and airhorn and see if I can lure folks into coming to me. If they're friendly, awesome! If they're cannibals - AND YOU KNOW THEY PROBABLY ARE - we can shoot them from safety! Also... I forgot to roll for weather. Oops. Let's do that now!

Weather: Light rain, mild temp.

Excellent! My gut says take the Coveralls, Knee Pads, Winter Coat, Machete, Norinco SKS, Tool Belt (which I'll promptly fill with knives, obvi), Tactical Vest, Surgery Kit (good for bartering maybe, which means I need a base somewhere nearby to haul all this to), Fire Stick, Air Horn, Luxury Item (TOILET PAPER for sure), Megaphone, Multi-Tool, Mylar Blanket, Poncho, and Water Filter. Now I'm definitely going to have to trade some things and the rules say I can only wear (3xCONSTITUTION) in size for armor. Now the shin guards I'm wearing are Sz2, the knee pads are Sz1, the coveralls are Sz3, the winter coat is Sz3, and the tactical vest (which provides 2AR for the torso) is Sz1. I can only have a total of Sz9 and that's half my total carrying capacity. I can wear the rollerblades (which is totally rad and absolutely the plan), so that helps a bit. Let's ditch the coat - the coveralls are definitely better. That means all the other stuff is Sz7. Wearing the rollerblades and dropping the dust mask leaves me with a total carrying weight of Sz14, so I'll take the Norinco (which has a bayonet, of course) of Sz4 and drop the bow for the third knife, the fire stick (no weight), air horn, toilet paper (no weight), mylar blanket (no weight), poncho (no weight), and water filter.

Wow. And that brings me to, like, 1315hrs. Maybe spend some time getting dressed and swapping out gear and call it 1400hrs. And then realize that maybe I forgot to include food and water for that item total, so let's say I ate and drank. Gotta forage soon, methinks, but first... a base. I'll roll a random location... Gas Station. Okay, we'll set up there. Not usually a tactically-wise choice but maybe it'll do for now. Probably a garage and stuff, so maybe not too bad. Let's take a perusal through what's left, then we'll forage later and maybe try and fortify things a bit. Perception vs. 3# this time... actually I don't need to roll since my modifier is equal to the difficulty, so lemme consult the GAS STATION TABLE after determining that there are 6 things to be found here: Notebook, Hammer, Local Map, Luxury Item, Notebook, Duct Tape. Hmm. Well I'll keep the toothpaste and map since they weigh nothing, and that duct tape... let's maybe leave that out in the open for later.

1415hrs. We're going to empty everything in the station backroom and head out in search of parts we can use to fortify the windows and stuff. Speaking of stuff... maybe a bed first. Then a wood stove. So we'll head out to break down cars, bringing only the multi-tool and a knife. Unarmored. Maybe not a smart idea but this is a sort of smash and grab for some good stuffing and such. That's the Build skill, Salvage specialty, which is 3# and takes 4(d6)hrs. I auto-succeed that but need to roll to see what I get... 6, which explodes to a 2, for a grand total of 12 - awesome! So I haul back 12 parts to the station and auto-succeed at the difficulty to make the bed but it takes three hours and six parts. It's getting late.

2115hrs. Time for bed. We'll forage in the morning, then maybe do the same thing for some insulation and get a wood stove in there - it gets cold at nights...

Stay tuned, avid reader, but place your bets now - is Vincent our main character or will he die a horrible death on his second day? Hint: Look at the title.

With Brightest of (anticipatory) Greens,

The Omega Girl: Epilogue - Birth Of A Dead Man, pt. 1 (Apocalyptia Solo Playthrough, SGAM 2016)

I like to include a sort of stream of consciousness as I'm gaming, even during the character creation stage. This is the first one I built. I cut out some of my really extraneous notes but you'll see what I was going for - someone that was tailor-made for foraging on his own. One of the big pieces to the game system is crafting a base though, which is a lot harder than it sounds. We'll learn that lesson tomorrow though.


CREATING VINCE (who will be my first character, which mean focusing on survival via scavenging, which is Perception, maybe with high Luck)

Step 1: Vincenc Eutychius Kr├╝ger, 6', Caucasian, dark hair and eyes, thirty-three

Step 2, 3: 12pts to assign to Traits, (Brains x 6)pts to Skills
Agility 3
-Acrobatics 1
-Larceny 1
-Range 3
Brains 4
-Build 4
-Medicine 4
-Science 4
Constitution 3
-Melee 3
-Survival 4 (Forage +1)
Demeanor 2
Stealth 3
Perception 4
Athletics 3
Socialize 2

Step 4:
Speed = 6
XP = 4
Carry = 18
Luck = 2
Defenses = Block (3), Dodge (1), Reflex (4)
Health = Head/Arms/Legs (3), Torso (6)
Weapon ATK = (Melee or Range + whatever mods)
Psyche = 5/6 dots

Step 5: Abilities (use Brains x 6 = 24pts)
[9] +1 Luck
[9] Unorthodox Methods (use Brains for Survival)
[3] Specialize +1 Forage
[3] Favorite Weapon Compound Bow

Step 6: Gear
Clothes, Backpack, Knife, Food can, Water bottle
Armor = [5,4] Shinguards
Melee Weapons = [3,5] Knife
Ranged Weapons = [2,2] Compound Bow w/2 target arrows
MGL = [2,4,4] Dust Mask, [4,6,1] Pepper Spray, [5,2,4] Rollerblades

This... is a more awkward assortment than I usually get even. Rollerblades might be helpful, kind of, in a city... and two knives? The entry for compound bow confuses me - I think it's trying to say something about requiring a Constitution roll to Aim it but I'm not sure - so we'll just ignore that detail. Two knives means whittling more arrows I guess, so that'd be some sort of Build roll. Hmm. Weird. Well, on to actually making the sheet!

[Several hours of a lazy Friday later...]

Okay, so that's done. Not sure how I'm going to update things daily but we'll worry about that later. There's not a lot to track. I think I'll start out just waking up on the roof of a hospital, wearing a jumpsuit, shinguards, and backpack and with the knives in belt sheaths and bow in a sling (yes, those exist) on my shoulder. No memory of how I got there (don't worry, I have a plan...ish...), so down through the hospital we go!

...and there you go. It's always interesting for me to go back and read what I was thinking at the time in light of what happens later. Not everyone digs these sorts of details but I really think it's important, especially in a situation like this where I'm really just striving for creative writing prompts, to take copious notes about everything in the moment. Later, if I need a plot point or an arc or something, I can review why I did what I did. Sometimes it helps, sometimes I just chuckle and reflect how much I probably have in common with a loner on the brink of insanity wandering through the world in a daze.

With Brightest of (don't get too attached to Vince... just sayin') Greens,

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Omega Girl: Preamble - Where Have All The Band-Aids Gone? (Apocalyptia Solo Playthrough, SGAM 2016)

The second annual Solo Gaming Appreciation Month is nearly upon us and here I am all rusty with my six-sided dice! I built a character using the Apocalyptia system (which I've blogged about before) and set my mind to try out a Global Pandemic scenario. I'll be fudging a couple of the more vague rules but it seems heaven-sent for folks like me (us!) who want to adventure into the Wasteland all by our lonesomes. Combat is always brutal though, and this particular scenario makes medical supplies scarce - and humans even scarcer. The fact is that if you roll and encounter humans of any kind, you have to roll again to confirm (otherwise it's a wild animal). I like that. Twenty bottlecaps says I still run into a gang of cannibals though.





The setting will be an unnamed city looking not unlike the one in I Am Legend (minus the hemocytes) located in the North Eastern United States during the current season (November 2016). My hope is to set things up so that I can make a daily entry to crunch numbers. In a daring new move, I'll keep plot to a minimum for the sake of quantity over quality, at least to begin with. My aim is that, over time, a story will unfold organically. We'll see how that turns out (spoiler: you'll know when a plot comes into view).

So stay tuned: I'll be getting a head start so that I can (fingers crossed) get a blog entry in once a day or so. And away we go!

With Brightest of (I even did some writing ahead of time for this one!) Greens,

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Journey of Jack, Day Three (Apocalyptia Solo Playthrough)

And here's the last entry for Jack. The Apocalyptia guide recommends dividing the day into quarters and assigning shifts. For a solo character (and I'm still kind of unclear how comrades work... I think it's more a GM thing) I still try to maintain that as it allows me to plan a day and then roll for what happens. I did try going hour by hour one time, rolling a d6 for encounters and adding a modifier for every hour an encounter didn't take place. It was interesting, but, again, as someone who focuses more on storytelling and less on the rolling it was essentially asking for extreme circumstances that I wasn't ready for. It might work better with a more developed character or something but a lone fresh PC can't handle a lot of what's out there in the Wasteland.

Sometimes even a submachine gun and buddy aren't enough to help, as you'll discover in this entry. I've run mini-games using this system upwards of a dozen times and despite that there's no statistical reason for it to have happened, I always end up running into Cannibals before long. During Jack's third day (below), he was given a partner and told to clear the building. I was really turned off when his partner was basically felled in one hit. I felt... disappointed? cheap? ineffectual? So that's why I'm on the fence about continuing with Jack or starting anew - he obviously has some good character development potential (including a clear Vendetta against the Cannibal faction) but... meh. I lose interest easily. Take a read:

Well, the goal for today was simple - head into town, forage for whatever food we could find and try to score something to store water in so we don’t have to make daily trips out to the creek. Things were hampered a bit when we awoke to some rather foreboding weather - a dust storm was coming in from the West. It hit just about just about daybreak, which made visibility almost nil outside for several hours. We didn’t get into town until after lunch as a result. Addie didn’t much like the idea of checking inside the school either, so we were told to just take our time, be safe, and check the other buildings in the area. We parked at the post office again since it was so central and fanned out from there in two-person teams. I was paired with Angela this time - Angie for short. She’s younger than me by a couple winters for sure but I wouldn’t want to be on her bad side. Oh, she’s cheerful enough, all things considered, but something tells me Angie’s worse than Amie if you get her riled up. Something about the way she cusses out the walkers even when there’s none around. More about Angie in a minute.

Everything was covered in a thin layer of dust - less thin in some places. To be honest, it sort of reminded me of Fall back home. A couple inches of snow that lasts the afternoon and melts before supper. We worked our way through the houses one by one. And then… I don’t know exactly what happened. We were in this basement, covering ourselves as best we could, and then a ton of guys and gals just charge out of nowhere - they must have been waiting for us. Some came from a closet, some from behind furniture. They were everywhere. They mobbed us and one sunk his machete deep into Angie’s shoulder. She never got up. I ran. Four started tearing off Angie’s armor for some reason I don’t want to think about and the rest chased me. All but one gave up and went back. I had shouted so the others could hear me but this guy wasn’t going anywhere. He ran right up to me and I got a good hit in with my hatchet but it must’ve been a clearance item because the head fell off the next time I swung at him. Maybe it was the adrenaline, I don’t know, but I managed to dodge his swings and eventually brought him down with my knife just as Addie and the others arrived from the other buildings.

There’s this code in the Wasteland, that you help each other out if you can, or not, but no one likes the flesh-eaters. Most folks’d just shoot them on sight for what they’ve done. The look in those Amazon’s eyes when they asked about Angie… I’ve never seen it. The lot of them just broke into pairs without a word and surrounded the house. Once it was secure, they broke in windows and, well, I can guess what happened next. There was screaming, from the rednecks, and the quiet sound of MP5’s working for about ten minutes. They all came out carrying what was left of Angie - which was somewhat less than when I had seen her last, her armor all torn off and stained - and rigged up something to carry her back to the house. Alissa tossed me the keys to Angie’s bike and I followed them back at a respectful distance.

I stayed out in the driveway while the others shared the news and buried the body. You could see the smoke from the house from the porch. It wasn’t a good night for anyone. No one talked with me but I understood - I wasn’t one of them. I gathered my things and prepared to leave in the morning. Addie did knock on my door to say they were leaving too, heading to another outpost in the South. She gave me Angie’s ice axe and flashlight and an extra water bottle and wished me luck. They were already gone when I woke up.

It's always tough to emulate an encounter with multiple enemies fairly. I definitely care more about my PC than an NPC (usually) but I don't want the enemies to be biased. I basically just went with an odds/evens roll to see who they'd go after. It worked out alright for Jack and I even started a fourth day but I'm thinking that if I pick up his story I'll re-write to go back into town and look for clues as to where the Cannibals might have come from. Really work that vendetta angle. We'll see. There's also the scenarios, which are interesting and can drastically change the atmosphere of a game, except I'm a little unclear how the special encounters work. Are they the only encounters you ever have or...? We'll see. Bonus content for today is the malware I seem to have picked up working with some drivers, so it may be a few days before I get another post up (or several months as usual, haha).

With Brightest of (the ice ax is an amazing weapon to have though, it's like the setting equivalent of a lightsaber) Greens,