Scions on a Plane! Gameplay videos!

So here are the actual videos of gameplay from SGG's Scion session.  Part 1 is mostly the group getting started out and to their respective modes of transportation.

Part 2 is mostly where the character interactions reside.

Body Language

In watching back over the video of Sunday Game Group's Scion session, I realized one of the things that made it most fun is that the group is comfortable enough with each other that everyone relaxes into their characters and gets animated.  There's lost of gesturing and reposturing to convey not only what the characters are saying, but what they're doing.

I think it's really an underrated piece of roleplaying to have the ability to mime out a bit of a character's body language.  Posture and gestures tell us a lot and often help us interpret the words and tone of a person speaking to us.  I think for SGG, those gestures help us remember that it's not Chuck over there, it's Nick.  They might have similarities in posturing, but they're not the same and that can often clue me in if he's in or out of character.

No more point in this post than to observe that, but I do think it's really cool.


Video of Scions on a Plane!

As promised, there is video of the first session of Sunday Game Group's Scion game.  This isn't every minute of the game, but our introductions are in here.  Not my video, I'd point out, but actually belonging to the GM.


Scions on a Plane

My Sunday group, after a few false starts, finally got to start our run of Scion yesterday.  I'm playing Leander "Lee" Adrastos, Scion of Athena, who I envision (were this a TV series) played by Christian Kane.  Leander was born of a small piece of Athena left in Zeus when she burst from his forehead.  When Zeus was out doing what Zeus does, the piece was left behind in a mortal woman, who gave birth to Leander and gave him the last name Zeus had assumed when he was with her.  Leander grew up a strategic genius and became a mercenary, leading teams in the Sudan, Eastern Europe, all throughout the Middle East, and South America.  When he was visited by Athena, he walked away from it all and went to live on Olympus and train to fight the Titans.  His mentor there was Elene, daughter of the Muses and librarian demigoddess.

The game started off with everyone running down their characters a bit.  We had Brock Landers, Hollywood Action Megastar son of Baldur.  Nick Holden, conman son of Hermes.  Rivkah, tough as nails daughter of Thor.  William, elderly Gurhka son of Kali.  And Sarafiiia, South African corporate espionagist daughter of Bast.  The game opened with everyone going about their daily busy.

Leander was on Olympus, preparing to read another strategy book when he found that the usually well-lit library had a corridor that was heavily shadowed.  Elene, who had been absent for some time, stepped from the shadows and informed Leander that a prophecy had been read that involved Leander and several other Scions.  She urged him to secrecy, even within the Pantheon, and told him he needed to go to K2 and climb it during the dead of winter.  Leander, feeling the pull of dury and trusting his mentor, agreed without hesitation.  He came off of Olympus via the Axis Mundi at Olympia, Washington.

From there he headed to Seattle, where he'd catch a transpacific flight that would eventually get him to Islamabad.  Before getting to the airport, he made a couple calls, arranging for a package of weapons and gear to be left for him at a storage unit outside security at the Islamabad airport.  There was no issue for Leander getting through security, but the same was not so for everyone.  Brock and Nick were at the same airport and when Nick tossed his gun over the metal detector, the only person who saw was Brock, who screamed "gun!" and tried to tackle Nick.  Nick deftly sidestep and Brock made a scene tackling a TSA agent.

Leander finished tying his shoe while checking to see a gun, which he found no evidence of.  So he calmly snapped a photo of Brock and decided to chat with Nick about the situation.  They talked a bit about the crazy actor and then Brock managed to convince TSA, DHS, and airport security that they had all been part of a publicity stunt.  Leander, already with suspicions about the others,  asked them if they were headed to gate C4, which Brock ignored, but nick confirmed by pulling out his ticket.

On said ticket was a drawing of a phallus, which Leander quickly recognized as the work of Hermes. He told Nick he recognized it, to which Nick replied "very funny, dad."  Leander corrected him to "cousin" and they compared a few family interactions and decided they must be headed to the same place for similar reasons.  They got to the plane where Nick ended up in first class (next to Brock) and Leander was in coach.

Elsewhere, William belived Sarafiiia had his yak.

When the contingent flying from Seattle arrived in Islamabad, they discovered a section of the terminal in chaos.  A stone-skinned woman was fighting a Fire Giant, and the Department of Pakistani Security (made up so they could be abbreviated DPS) were keeping people away.  Brock talked himself and Nick past DPS, but still didn't trust Leander, so left him behind.  They went in guns blazing, but the Giant shrugged the shots off.  Leander didn't need to be closer, though, just higher.  Standing on a bench and momentarily telling the DPS to wait, he called out instructions to Nick, Brock, and Rivkah (who was the stone-skinned wonan).  His plan worked, allowing Rivkah to free herself and Brock to put a bullet through the Giant's eye.  Brock again passed it all off as a PR stunt.

From there, Rivkah went to get her luggage and Leander went out to get the package he'd had left with Nick in tow.  He found a snowmobile and multiple guns waiting for him.  Rivkah and Brock arrived with their own snowmobiles and the foursome set out for K2.  Along the way, they passed an old man sitting atop a yak which was in a snow bank.  They stopped to talk with him and his hidden companion, then headed further on to base camp. Not long after William and Sarafiiia arrived atop their yaks.

Next time: A journey up K2!

Leander learned this session that he has a mostly tolerable cousin and that Brock Landers likes to tackle innocent people on a regular basis.  A regular basis.

I got a ChrisG (a bonus XP we all hand out at the end of session, named in honor of one of the other GM's of some of Sunday Game Group's players) for my coordination of my teammates and I gave a ChrisG to Sarafiiia for being able to hide her yak in plain sight.

Video to follow at some point!


Game Night: Steampunk Smackdown!

A couple Sundays back, most of the Sunday night group couldn't make it due to various reasons, so we jumped into a bit of Strands of Fate steampunk.  The group consisted of a Steampunk Sentient Robot (Chooooooie!), a Captain, a sniper, a burly tough guy, and my character.

My character dubbed herself Juno and was a wizard.  No really a wizard.  She'd be happy to tell you so.  Disregard those mechanical apparatus under her clothes.  Doubt and feel her wrath.  The rest of the group started out without Juno, who was from the area they were headed to, to investigate the disappearance of the local baron's daughter to mysterious kidnappers.  Juno also had her reasons to hunt down these kidnappers, giving a logical reason for her to link up with the group.

But I'd decided that Juno might just be a bit arrogant.  And she knew of Captain Zack (Sparrow, that is), who she informed she wouldn't be being intimate with.  The Captain reported with well-earned sarcasm and got a chest full of Aether bolt courtesy of Juno's bad temper.  Choo-choo didn't particularly like that and warned Juno with tea-kettle-y rage and a raised fist, but ended up picking up Captain Zack instead.  Juno managed to still convince the group she could be of help to them and thus tagged along as they headed off to a bar to look for clues.

Eventually, Choo-choo and Juno headed back to the group's airship while the captain got busy, the tough got drunk (and passed out), and the sniper got fed.  They never quite made it there, though.  On the way up the dock, Chooie overheard some other folks talking about the kidnappings and was sure that they were involved.  This, tea-kettle-y rage was unleashed.  Three of the group squared off against Chooie and Juno ducked behind the big robot to hide.

Meanwhile, Captain Zack was still getting laid.

Back at the dock, Juno threw up a shield, preventing the rest of the rival airship's crew from joining the fight. Eventually a grenade got introduced to the fight.  Juno went to blast one of the combatants, but her machinery failed.  A moment later, Chooie booted the grenade and the robot's great might punched the object through Juno's shield... and into the airship.  The resulting explosion was heard back at the bar and sent the burning wreckage of the ship down into the city.

The bewildered rival crew eventually lost out and the guards showed up.  Juno, in self-preservation mode, claimed to not really know Choo-choo and played up the act of creating a shield and her lack of knowledge of why the fight had started.  The guards took her, and Chooie, anyways.  Eventually, Captain Zack did get them freed and the group started out.

While in the air, the ship was attacked and forced into a storm where the worst happened: they encountered a terrible sky-kraken!  That was the cliff-hanger ending.


Concept Characters: Skark

As I said earlier, I sometimes have the idea for a character that I'm not going to get a chance to run.  Mostly, these characters are about the background/personality rather than the stats, but I'll share whatever I've got.

This character came up when what I call "my Sunday group" was playing DnD 4th edition set in a world where we were playing monster or non-human-looking races that we're rising up to free themselves from an oppressive Human-Elf-Eladrin regime that had enslaved all other races.

Race: Kenku
Sex: Male
Age: 16
Height: 5'0"
Weight: 110 lbs.
Alignment: Unaligned
Class: Seeker
Concept: Most Kenku are out for themselves and their flock, and occasionally become particularly eager to rend, maim, and steal. Skark is most certainly out for himself, but probably wouldn't be considered a model Kenku. His "flock" consists of a group of adventurers he's worked with for several years and his desire to cause mayhem isn't particularly well developed. Skark also has a great love of shiny things, but in a display terribly unlike the average Kenku he's learned that doing deeds to help others often sees him rewarded with the baubles he wants. And because everything everyone else wants done seems easy with the aid of his flock, Skark rarely goes out of his way to thieve. Finally, Skark uses a fairly simplistic guise much of the time to lower other people's mistrust of him. He remains mostly mute, save for a few bird-like squawks and his own name, using his seeming inability to communicate to convince others that he has no true intellect. While Skark is not a genius, his intelligence is on par with the average person's and there have been a number of individuals who have let their underestimation of the Kenku Seeker guide them right into his schemes.

It's Fated

I feel like a good place to start off writing here is to talk about my experience with the Fate Core Kickstarter.  Simply put, it was awesome!

Okay, so I could end there, but you should know WHY it was awesome!  I've been a fan of Fate for a while.  I first played Fudge maybe four or five years ago with friends in an attempt to introduce them to the Rifts world.  It was fun for one game, but didn't really hold anyone's attention.  I liked the simple mechanics, though.  Skip ahead a couple years and the Dresden Files RPG was released by Evil Hat (publishers of Fate Core).  My buddy decided he was going to run it, and here were those funky dice from my long before Fudge game.

DFRPG runs on the preceding version of Fate to Fate Core.  Our game was tons of fun, even if the sudden disappearance of half our party (and the representatives of our in-game Russian mafia) disappeared. I liked the mechanics even better, even if there were some rough spots.  Fate was quickly my Sunday group's favorite system.  Between DFRPG and the upcoming release of Fate Core we've used the also excellent Strands of Fate/Strands of Power system.

But anyways, back to the Kickstarter!  I managed to hear about it within 24 hours of it going live, and being familiar with Evil Hat, jumped right in.  When I signed up, I was in for one book and there were maybe 5 or 6 stretch goals announced.

The game was funded, if I recall, about ten hours after I pledged.  Quickly, the stretch goals representing various settings based on Fate Core mechanics began to be left in the dust.  Even better, the Fate Core book was ready for download right away!  I could get into the system without waiting for publishing and shipping!

And them came some awesome stretch goals like The Deck of Fate (playing cards with Fate dice results doubling as fate points!) and Fate Accelerated (a stripped down version of the game designed for newbies!).  In that time period , the settings books began to be available, too.  I can tell you right now that I've read Kreigszepplin Valkyrie and Camelot Trigger cover to cover and I'm in love with those settings.  But even better was when all the settings became print books, which I was promptly able to buy in for.  Ditto a Fate Core toolkit book and Fate Accelerated got their own books.

In the end, I pledged $80 and paid an extra $20 for separate shipping and am pulling in 4 physical books, those same four books in PDF/ePub/mobi, a font, pdfs of at least 2 other upcoming Evil Hat books, sounds files and videos of Fred Hicks of Evil hats doing funny things, and pdfs and utilities pledged by other backers of Fate Core, which looks to be adding another half-dozen pdfs to my haul. Not te mention that further Fate projects have been funded because of this single Kickstarter.  All that while watching a rocketing ascent to over $433,000 of a stated $3,000 goal!  The folks over at Evil Hat seemed so genuinely excited and proud of their Kickstarter that it's hard not to be thrilled.  (And why would I not be?)  Truly, Fate Core's Kickstarter set an amazing standard for RPG Kickstarters to aspire to!



A couple years ago now, I set up this blog with the intent of writing once a week and hoping to make money off it (as I had been getting paid a small amount elsewhere to blog), which I quickly decided was a poor motivation and rather silly.  The reason I write is for fun, and to share an insight, work through a problem, or make a joke.  So I'm clearing out what came before and starting over.

My intent this time around is to put together something here as often as I can, which will probably go in cycles as my interest waxes and wanes (though feedback will help that stay up!) and to not limit myself to what I feel like was ad-pandering before.  My main focus will still be pen and paper roleplaying, but since I play (and like to talk/write about) a lot of videogames, I'll let some of that cross over here, as well.  I won't be blogging often about personal issues (I've got Facebook, Twitter, a private journal, AND another blog for that), but I'm not going to worry about needing to be professional and unbiased sounding, because that's just not who I am.

So to give a more specific idea of what I intend to write on, I envision trying to do the following types of posts:

1. Game session summaries:  these won't be full play-by-plays, but rather a quick run down of what happened (especially when things go well for me) and any anazing moments of humor around the table.

2. In-character blurbs: sometimes I write in-character bits unrelated to my game sessions in order to better find a character's voice.  No reason not to share.

3. Reviews: sometimes I just have to rave about my new dice, the new setting I'm playing, or something I found handy to have at the table.

4. Random (to steal from Day[9]) "be a better gamer" musings.

5. Gamer trip reports: One word, Blizzcon.

6. Character ideas:  I come up with way more characters than I can sctually play.  I'll be throwing up posts for the ones I'm not likely to use, to help inspire others.

That all said, we'll see if I add more or fail to keep up entirely.  Either way, it's worth a shot!