Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Dreamation 2011 - Critical! and Geasa

There's a convention that I like to go to, and it's Dreamation. I find a pile of wonderful people there who I love talking to as well as get to play with a pile of games. Some of them are even my own.

There were two games that we ran. The first one was Geasa, and I ran a lot of it since it's the new game that we're pushing, and the second one was Critical!: Go Westerly! We got a couple of interesting insights playing these games.


I only had one game of Geasa go off, there were four scheduled.

Lesson One:
Try to produce more hype for the game. I was hoping to get at least two of them off because I want people to play the game. They need to play it, or at least hear about it to want to play it. Must bust out the marketing chops, which we all know that most writers suck at this part of the biz.

The game went off fairly well. We did a lot of exploring in France just before the revolution. This was funny to me because this was the second time that someone decided to do that and one time was in Hamilton so there is no way that they were able to collaborate on this. I should probably find a way to write up a setting book for this time period because apparently it's pretty popular. I think I'll blame Montseigneur 1499 for this.

Lesson Two:
Make sure that you schedule a break. Geasa is a pretty demanding game and the fact that people just kept going means that it broke down pretty quickly near the end. I think if I give people that 15 minute break between every two times the game goes around the table then it will refresh the mind and give people the chance to do what they need to do. Must remind myself about that for the next time I run the game.

I also need to sit down and give people a slightly better overview of what they can and can't do. They can tell what their characters are doing, they can define anything for an NPP but they can't tell things about the other players. That's stepping on toes and should probably be reigned in better. Anyway, I think it went well and hope people enjoyed the game.

Critical!:* Go Westerly

Wow. This game went off so much better than I thought it would. Not that I thought it would be bad, but I didn't think it would be this much fun. The players really did have a good time with the characters and it was silly, but at no point in time did it because goofy, and that's my biggest worry. I don't want this game to be thought of as some sort of equivalent of Munchkin: The RPG or something like that. It needs to be able to stand on it's own funny.

Here were some lines during the game carefully written down by Geoff Bottone, who is one half of the creative team on this. They are listed by character, not by player.

Mary the Wench
As a duly-authorized employee of the tavern, offering to sell the tavern's provisions to the hungry Kobolds for gold. Thereby ending the battle with the kobolds with her unusually high common sense. Also, frequently using her common sense to help others.

Urist Axebeard, Tall Dwarf
When confronted with flying fairies: I can't reach them with my axe? Can I throw it at them? I really don't like fairies.

Urist: Wait, there's a plaque on this wall. And it says, "Perend Adventure Tours Dungeon Complex, Room A5? That...doesn't make any sense."

Urist: What's my name? You don't really care, do you? You'll just call me, "dwarf," anyway, so whatever name you give me is fine.
Mabel: Oh, excellent! You shall be known as El Tallface!

Barnabas Ramsey, Wizard

Discovering, through discourse with a kobold that he had captured, that the kobold was both a) very intelligent and b) a licensed therapist. Then the two of them proceeded to have a very nice conversation as they headed to the kobold lair (pronounced "lay-er" by the kobolds), where they found the others mired in traps and negotiations.

Taking out the entire group of anarcho-punk fairies by shouting, "this is ridiculous! We live in a feudal society! You can't tell me that you've just come up with this extremely advanced, modern, political system on your own in what is, essentially a vacuum! I don't believe it! I just don't believe in these fairies!"

This lead to the fairies keeling over and dying, because someone didn't believe in them. Everyone else was very careful not to clap.

This entire exchange with Aelae the Necromancer. It's paraphrased. The actual exchange was even more awesome.

Barnabas: You may be evil, but you don't have to be a jerk!
Aelae: Sure I do, it's in the contract.
Barnabas: You have a contract to be evil?
Aelae: Yes! I graduated from the Wizardry with a major in Necromancy and a contract that says that I get to be a jerk whenever I want!
Barnabas: Really? You're a graduate of the Wizardry? Me too. But I was valedictorian!
Aelae: So was I.
Barnabas: Oh.
Aelae: Incidentally, if you're a graduate of the Wizardry, what are you doing slumming it in this dungeon with these idiots? Shouldn't you be teaching classes?
Barnabas: I don't...have...a graduate degree...Um...Can you write me a letter of recommendation, maybe?

Barnabas: "I know, I'll summon a fire elemental. That should solve the problem. This is a dungeon, nothing in here should catch on fire."
Mary: "What about the wooden kiosks outside?"
Barnabas: "Fire elementals don't buy things."

Daffodianna, the Very Nice Bard

Played by, possibly, the nicest person at the table. She was quiet and sweet, and played songs that gave everyone bonuses virtually all the time. She also conjured an impressive goblin-repelling force bubble out of song. And, was responsible for this little exchange.

Player: Okay, now that combat's over, I'm trying to do (something not combat-related, I forget what it was). Do I still get the Bard's song bonus?
Daffodianna: No. I don't play music when combat's over. There's no point. It's just not exciting.

Angelique Doto, Quillsman
Bartender: Okay, you're standing at the end of the stairs. The basement floor has collapsed out from beneath you and you see the remains of the basement, about twenty feet down, in another cavern.
Angelique: I jump down! Hoorah!

Things like the following happened all the time, but this was by far the coolest example of Angelique. Who had no weapons or armor of any kind.

The players fight two skeletons. Urist kills one. Angelique says.

Angelique: I do a leaping dive roll, grab the skull of the skeleton that Urist just killed, and throw it really hard at the other skeleton. Success!
Bartender: Okay, you hit the skull with the skull in the back of the...skull...The other skeleton crumbles. It looked awesome, by the way.

Marten Iij, Priest of the Thief
Marten: "I'm not going hunting for kobolds. All we're going to do is run into traps."

Marten (upon seeing a woman trapped in a heavily trapped room with whirling death blades and the like): Ma'am, is it all right if I try to steal from you? (He knew that if he was robbing her, his chance to succeed would be higher).

Stelph the Elf
Stelph's constant running patter about how he was better than everyone else (in both incarnations) was just hilarious. And then there was this:

Bartender: The undead are pouring through this tunnel, which looks like it's been hastily dug. Roots from trees on the surface protrude through the ceiling in a lot of places.
Stelph: I use my nature-based magic to convince the trees to attack the tunnel, because I am a Defender of the Forest. I fail. Oh, nature, why have you foresaken me.

And this:

Bartender: The elf introduces herself to you as Tulip. She flicks her blue hair absentmindedly, stares at the floor, and says, "heeey." (this was me, channeling Ke$ha, though Stelph doesn't have a beard).
Stelph: Heeey. I'm two hundred.
Bartender: "I'm 198."
Stelph: Oh. Really? Well, huh.

What I got to do!

I got to play with Brennan and Amber with a couple of Brennan's games. I got to play Three Black Crows, Three Dead Men and Sparks from the Fire both games that Brennan did for various contests. They were both an amazing good time. Amber and I both agreed that had we not been so exhausted we probably would have had even more fun, which is amazing when you consider the fact that we had a great time. It seriously was one of the big highlights and I recommend that you pick up Three Crows and check out the rest of the games from Galileo Games. Seriously good times there.

Also, Brennan has a bag of awesome. It's making me want to scour through ebay to find something similar. It was just too amazing.

All in all it was a great con. I can't do anything but recommend any of the dexposure cons if you can make it. Not only are they a great and good time, you'll get to see and play a bunch of games with some amazingly awesome people.

I was just disappointed that my games conflicted with my chance of being a Cosmic Roadie!

1 comment:

David said...

French Revolutionary France, I told you that was a cool setting. Thanks Dave :)

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