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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 61 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Psychadelic Capes at GenCon  (Read 2323 times)
Hans
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Posts: 576


« on: July 20, 2006, 07:18:35 AM »

After reading over Tony's DexCon posts, and pondering the upcoming GenCon sessions, I have a question for those who are thinking of playing Capes at GenCon (either in my scheduled session, or a G.O.D. session): 

Would it be helpful to put some starting material up before the Con? 

Here is what I mean.  I will be doing a Psychadelic Capes thing in the morning.  By this I mean that the pre-gen characters, first scene I propose, and comics code, will all be written from a late '60's vantage point, with a generous helping of rock and roll, drug culture, and protest movement references.  Andrew has already suggested the idea of continuing the story from that session into later on in the day.  Would it be helpful to post the comics code and some of the pregen characters?  Would it help for those of us who plan on playing and who read this list to get on the same sheet of music, so that we have at least a vague idea of where to take things? 

I say this especially because I read Tony's masterful comics code additions from his Victory sessions at DexCon, and their power awes me.  It seems clear to me that a major contributor to the success of these "experience players only" sessions was Tony's input into the very first session (and his bringing the 2nd session people into the loop).  I would love to craft something similar in a '60's supers context that would drive the story (even if no one EVER gloats on it) in a similar fashion.  I would like it to be something that has humour, but also allows and even encourages some serious emotions to come about as well.  Think of the O'Neill/Adams run on Green Lantern back in 1970, or Steranko's Nick Fury stuff from around the same period.

What do you think? 
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TonyLB
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« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2006, 11:51:46 AM »

Well, I don't actually know your source material, and I can think of at least two ways to have a game that has lots of rock, drugs and protest:

  • One that mocks the '60s as a time when people basically gave up on the notion of reality, and plays in a world of chaos and wilfull insanity
  • One that reveres the '60s as a time when people lived and argued passionately, and holds up rock and drugs as the hard-living keystones for a lifestyle fundamentally energized by social protest.

The "psychadelic" label makes me think pretty strongly that you're aiming for the former.  I'll admit that I think the latter would be a lot more rewarding, but either one's going to be a rolicking good time, I have no doubt.

I definitely think that people should get a chance to read all of the pre-gens, and to choose which one they want to play.  Not every character will click with every player, and the benefit of knowing the quirks of other people's characters (and being inspired even by the characters you don't play) is huge.

I'd also recommend that you prepare a network of exemplar relationships, tying the characters to each other (either directly, by putting them into relationships ... arch-nemeses, simmering romance, ideological rivals, etc., etc. or by creating third parties whose attentions they vie over).  Those free goals make their way onto the table at just the right times, and they can do a great deal to give people the structure that they need to build a robust and believable sub-culture among the spandex-clad misfits.
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Hans
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Posts: 576


« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2006, 07:23:19 AM »

  • One that mocks the '60s as a time when people basically gave up on the notion of reality, and plays in a world of chaos and wilfull insanity
  • One that reveres the '60s as a time when people lived and argued passionately, and holds up rock and drugs as the hard-living keystones for a lifestyle fundamentally energized by social protest.

The "psychadelic" label makes me think pretty strongly that you're aiming for the former.  I'll admit that I think the latter would be a lot more rewarding, but either one's going to be a rolicking good time, I have no doubt.

My "ground-state" in almost any game is fairly lighthearted, and my own personal opinion of the history of the era tends more towards the first interpretation than the 2nd, so, yeah, I guess when I have set this up before (3 or 4 times now) the first option has been the default.  However, I think that the 2nd option would be fun as well.  I think a third option might be:

* One that exposes the major conflict of the '60's, freedom vs. responsibility.

Under this option, the tone is neither reverence nor mockery, but allows for both good and bad characters to hold mutually opposing philosophies.  To me, the ultimate example of this is Green Lantern (as responsibility) and Green Arrow (as freedom) wandering the USA.  Its almost like the D&D alignment system (chaos vs. law, good vs. evil) with the chaos vs. law axis actually taking the priority in the fiction over the good vs. evil one.  Within the game, four characters that represent these extremes might be: The Rightful Authorities (Lawful Evil), Acid Freak (Chaotic Evil), Nowhere Man (Chaotic Good), Rocket Redglare (Lawful Good).

Does anyone have any ideas on Comics code statements that might favour any of the options above?

Quote
I definitely think that people should get a chance to read all of the pre-gens, and to choose which one they want to play.  Not every character will click with every player, and the benefit of knowing the quirks of other people's characters (and being inspired even by the characters you don't play) is huge.

I agree.  My real question was whether any of this discussion would be helpful if it took place now, on the Forge. 

Quote
I'd also recommend that you prepare a network of exemplar relationships, tying the characters to each other (either directly, by putting them into relationships ... arch-nemeses, simmering romance, ideological rivals, etc., etc. or by creating third parties whose attentions they vie over).  Those free goals make their way onto the table at just the right times, and they can do a great deal to give people the structure that they need to build a robust and believable sub-culture among the spandex-clad misfits.

Good ideas.  I will work on that.  I have a lot of characters, but no real relationships between them.
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* Want to know what your fair share of paying to feed the hungry is? http://www3.sympatico.ca/hans_messersmith/World_Hunger_Fair_Share_Number.htm
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