jacob
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Wed 26 Jun 2019, 21:16

Played a highly modified version of Chariot of the Gods (switched an existing SWN game over to Alien and ported the characters over). 

Characters found a derelict ship (the Cronus, minus spores and neomorphs) and began to explore it. 

In three hours they managed to get from the D deck up to the bridge, only encountering a couple gristly scenes a single abomination that got blown away in a single shotgun blast.

One player pushed to make a roll at every opportunity and his stress skyrocketed. Pretty soon he was stuck in a perpetual panic attack, constantly trying to flee and hide.
In retrospect I should have hand-waved some of the requests to roll, but it worked out. He had really bad luck with his air supply rolls too, running out of air before they cleared the first deck (luckily the found some tanks on the ship) so his character was having a REALLY bad day.

Session cliffhanger ended with the characters reaching the bridge, finding some strange alien growth on one of the window panels. One character freaked out and shot it, blowing out the window.

Interestingly the players refused to hole up somewhere and rest to reduce stress (they started "NOWHERE IS SAFE ENOUGH" even though they've only come across a single monster), so all of them are sitting on like 5-8 stress.

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EDIT: One house role: I added a jenga tower; whenever a PC had to do something 'scary' they pulled a block. If they abandon a pull they gain a stress and the PC chickens out. If the tower falls it triggers a crisis. 

So if a PC wanted to check out a storage closet, I'd tell them to pull a block. If the tower falls maybe there was a monster in there. Added some fun anxiety at the table!

Amusing the tower fell when the PCs were in a hallway arguing about which way to go and someone bumped the table. Suddenly the argument is cut short when they hear something around the corner...
 
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CynicalMo
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Thu 27 Jun 2019, 14:19

EDIT: One house role: I added a jenga tower; whenever a PC had to do something 'scary' they pulled a block. If they abandon a pull they gain a stress and the PC chickens out. If the tower falls it triggers a crisis. 

So if a PC wanted to check out a storage closet, I'd tell them to pull a block. If the tower falls maybe there was a monster in there. Added some fun anxiety at the table!

Amusing the tower fell when the PCs were in a hallway arguing about which way to go and someone bumped the table. Suddenly the argument is cut short when they hear something around the corner...
This is a hilariously awesome way of introducing real stress into game play. Totally going to steal this.
 
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aramis
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Thu 27 Jun 2019, 17:41

Took another three hours to actually finish up act 1... but that because they got well and truly into character, and decided to focus on making it safe on Deck A. They lightly scoured Deck A with the flamethrower, fixed the CO2 scrubbers, cobbled together a new flamer, had a fade to black scene between Miller and Davis, and killed Dr. Cooper's parasite in the hallway. 

And, so the payday material made sense from the dangerousness, rather than He³, H³ in the cargo, Which lead to fueling the new flamer with $1000/Liter Tritium. No new deaths, but Miller ain't walking too fast.
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Smith & Wesson: the original point and click interface...
 
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The1TrueFredrix
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Thu 27 Jun 2019, 19:21

Took another three hours to actually finish up act 1... but that because they got well and truly into character, and decided to focus on making it safe on Deck A. They lightly scoured Deck A with the flamethrower, fixed the CO2 scrubbers, cobbled together a new flamer, had a fade to black scene between Miller and Davis, and killed Dr. Cooper's parasite in the hallway. 

And, so the payday material made sense from the dangerousness, rather than He³, H³ in the cargo, Which lead to fueling the new flamer with $1000/Liter Tritium. No new deaths, but Miller ain't walking too fast.
Sounds great!
Effekt - A fan podcast celebrating Swedish RPGs including, but not limited to: Alien; Coriolis; Forbidden Lands; Symbaroum; and Tales from the Loop. Featuring discussion magazine episodes and Actual Play recordings. https://effektpodcast.org/
 
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paulbaldowski
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Fri 28 Jun 2019, 22:14

I've run two games, one with my home group and another at a local store.

The home session we played for a little over 2 hours and got to the end of Act I. The store session ran for 3.75 hours, start to finish.

I use the collision with the Cronus to introduce the game mechanics, handling some of the elements around it as exposition.

I put a visible timer on the table, facing the players, for the game store session, setting it to 3.5. I had one pointing toward me as well, and looked to close out the first act around the time it hit 2 hours remaining - and then closed out the second and third acts in about an hour each. It felt like the timer maintained a sense of pressure and pace.

The team kept splitting up, but I used the maps on the table and blip markers to maintain awareness of where they were; I gave each a brief period in the spotlight and moved.

Enjoyable sessions, both. I hope to finish the home session soon - the conclusion has been somewhat delayed by the real world!
 
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aramis
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Thu 04 Jul 2019, 08:17

Finished it tonight. 3 sessions, 2.5 hours each. Act 2 blended into Acts 1 & 3... 

My adult daughter, who has an anxiety issue, had a full on panic attack due to a confluence of...

1. The system building tension in the player via the stress mechanic.
2. the GM (me) building tension by misdirection (they found AVA in an air duct in the ceiling of Deck B, by the labs; I only mentioned a tapping noise every time they passed by).
3. The adventure and agendas building mistrust in the players
4. The room being noisy due to 2 other tables, both loud.
5. the  fireworks going off just outside the building we were in... (3 Jul, in the US, in a college town... college kids setting off fireworks before the 4th of July.)

She pulled herself through...
And, despite the panic attack, she had fun. Especially overcoming the panic attack.

A game she's unlikely to forget... unlike her character, who already forgot.
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decanox
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Thu 04 Jul 2019, 10:17

Act II here, more or less 5 hours. They are enjoying the game.

In the last session, I has to highlight the following: when Cooper dies consequence of the neomorph birth, I read the background text. I tried to avoid what happened next but it was impossible: while Cooper was between convulsions, all players drew their guns (like a group of true mobsters) and aimed the chest of the poor Cooper while he was dying. I told them that they should have to roleplay their characters, that the characters know nothing about xenos... "No way", they said, "We think it's a common reaction...".

So they were influenced by the Kane death in "Alien", they knew what it was going to happen and they transferred that knowledge to their characters. Not much realistic but they were all against my opinion.

     
 
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paulbaldowski
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Thu 04 Jul 2019, 21:55

So they were influenced by the Kane death in "Alien", they knew what it was going to happen and they transferred that knowledge to their characters. Not much realistic but they were all against my opinion.
It isn't an opinion. It's the suspension of disbelief and the divide between character and player knowledge. I realize you can't wrestle the players into submission—but they shouldn't be conferring privileged Real World awareness on their ignorant characters. That's a real shame. Part of the fun comes from playing the characters as is, with all their failings and ignorance—knowing that something will go horribly wrong.
 
decanox
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Fri 05 Jul 2019, 09:56


It isn't an opinion. It's the suspension of disbelief and the divide between character and player knowledge. I realize you can't wrestle the players into submission—but they shouldn't be conferring privileged Real World awareness on their ignorant characters. That's a real shame. Part of the fun comes from playing the characters as is, with all their failings and ignorance—knowing that something will go horribly wrong.
It's true, in Alien there will be some cases in which the wall between what a player knows and what a character knows is really thin, since we have some scenes of the films carved in our memory and we know how it ended: death. I don't blame them because reading the text it was obvious that anything was going to burst from Cooper. 

That's the reason I highlighted this scene, and even before I read the background text I knew that they would do something similar (running, shooting Cooper, etc). Maybe, in future adventures, it would interesting to not make or avoid so evident "moments" or backgrounds. On the other hand, they were totally surprised with the abomination inside the reactor relay (only telling them that "there is a dirty space suit in the corner").  

Anyway, they were not capable to kill the neomorph since in the initiative order they were slower, and the little neomorph even escaped.
 
loonyboi
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Re: Who's gotten it to table so far?

Fri 05 Jul 2019, 14:49

Ran Chariot of the Gods the other night for a group of four people. Went pretty well! We got up to Act 3 before quickly ending the scenario. 

I dropped some rules, since this was a one-shot, but kept most things. The stress mechanic worked well, although there was some frustration that multiple success rolls could be overturned by a single 1 on a stress die. We also found that the Technician character is much more useful in this particular scenario than the Handler. We only had four people, and so we didn't actually *use* the technician, and there was a lot that character could have done. We also found that the Android rules are pretty generous. It wasn't until very late in the game that the android was revealed (which honestly, was a failure on my part...I should have pushed it out sooner). And when he did, he almost immediately dominated the game and effectively "won" the game. 

My players were all pretty into their roles, which was fun, and the agendas added a very Paranoia-esque element. One character got infected and attacked another, and the Corporate player locked the two of them in a room together. Then he went and murdered the NPC corporate character (!) when she objected to his agenda. He was then murdered by the (now adult) Neomorph, but not before seeing the Pilot revealed as an Android. The Pilot killed the Neomorph with the incinerator, repaired the ship and flew off into the sunset to take the cargo to his rival corporate masters. 

Some kinks to work through, but all in all, a lot of fun. 
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