Sunday, March 22, 2015

[Weekly Geeky Report] Blades, Firefly and other stuff...

Despite having promised to take a break from backing stuff on Kickstarter once the Uncharted Worlds campaign wrapped up, I've gone right ahead and started backing the current Blades In The Dark campaign.

Achievements Unlocked
We wrapped up the second part of the bounty hunter character's (Jesse's) spotlight episode in the Firefly campaign. Upon reaching Leader Island, the crew found the sheriff's daughter Jannie trussed up on Crown Point and, after untying her they learned that her boyfriend Issac has been kidnapped by the gang of Alliance soldier wannabes. Despite her misgivings, Jesse is forced to take Jannie along with them, since the girl knows the island better than they do. Unfortunately, the girl proves a handful for the crew, her own desire to deliver 'justice' against the men who abducted and beat Issac leading her to face the gang leader head on, even as the crew have taken control of the situation by bluffing his men into thinking they're surrounded by the authorities. Jannie ends up inflicting terrible violence upon the gang leader before she is pulled out by Winston and the crew beat a hasty retreat from the island, crippling the gang's hovercraft so they can't chase them across the water.

Jesse, though painfully familiar with the dark path this young girl is taking, shows no mercy to the girl and reports her actions to the sheriff upon their return, urging him to enforce the law despite her being his daughter. Before leaving, Jesse has another talk with orphanage owner Mick, who tells her that he knows she hasn't told the whole truth about what happened to the father of the two young orphans she delivered to him. He expresses his hope that one day, when she's ready and they're ready, that she'll tell them the whole story about what happened. The session ended with them receiving a transmission from Mr Universe: Captain Loretto is alive and wants them to meet him on Persephone! They also transmit the quarantined LRI computer virus to him so he can examine it for any clues that might help them track down LRI's head researcher, Matthius Hartman.

So the stage is set for our two-part finale. Next week it'll be time to reveal some secrets, some about LRI's plans, some more personal to the crew. Hopefully, it'll be a blast. I'm looking forward to actually finishing the campaign this time around, rather than having the finale indefinitely postponed as happened with my previous Doctor Who campaign. Plus, I'm going to be glad to be done with Cortex Plus and able to move on to a different system. I still like Cortex Plus well enough, but there are some things about it that have begun to irk me.

I've finished up to episode 9 of Fate/Zero and, remember when I said it was darker than Fate/Stay Night? Yeah, turns out I hadn't seen anything yet. Without spoiling too much, let me just say that Caster is one messed up dude, and his 'master' along with him.

I've been reading through Apocalypse World lately, both so I can write up a review and also because I might be running it soon (see below for details), but I've paused for a bit to read the quick start kit for Blades In The Dark. So far I'm liking what I'm seeing. It has a lot of moving parts (action rolls, effect rolls, faction and teamwork mechanics, countdown clocks, etc) which might make it seem more complex than it actually is, but it all fits together really nicely and I'm looking forward to giving it a try in the PbP starting up over on the GotEXP site soon.

As noted yesterday, I also read through the Fate Accelerated Edition rulebook with the intent of doing a review of it. In the end though, I decided it was too short and too similar to Fate Core to post a review of it. Most of the good would be just the same stuff I like about Core, and the only bad point that would differ from Core is my own (possibly incorrect) preconception that it's well not suited for campaign play. It seems like a good enough version of the ruleset for its intended purpose of being quick to set up for impromptu game sessions and easy to play for new players.

I finished Boneshaker and, although dark, it wasn't nearly as grim as I was worried it might be. Despite the bleak apocalyptic setting, the book was actually quite a fun adventure novel featuring airships, mad science and zombies. Zeke remained fairly irritating to me as a character until the end, but his mother was awesome, and the narration from Kate Reading (of the Wheel of Time series) and Wil Wheaton is top notch. Definitely recommend. Next up is The Alloy Of Law by Brandon Sanderson, then back to The Wheel of Time series.

Works In Progress
After much hemming and hawing I decided to go ahead and try running a Play by Post *World game on GotEXP. The hemming and hawing wasn't because I don't want to run it, but because I haven't had the best of luck with the PbP format, either as a player or a GM. But, until my schedule frees up a bit, it's my best bet if I want to try my hand at running a *World game.

I'm currently running a poll to see what people would prefer to play out of Apocalypse World, Monsterhearts and Monster Of The Week. So far I've got two votes for Apocalypse World and one vote for Monsterhearts. Honestly, I was expecting Monsterhearts to be the least popular choice (not everybody's into supernatural drama of the teenage variety, especially with romance thrown in), but I'm surprised there haven't been any takers for Monster Of The Week yet. I'll run the poll for a week and then run whatever is the most popular choice, breaking any ties with my own vote.

Anyhow, that's all for now. I'll be back tomorrow with the next AP of our Tears of a Machine campaign. See you later!

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