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Author Topic: Hellbabe: Hellboy in Trollbabe  (Read 4476 times)
b_bankhead
Member

Posts: 259


« on: March 21, 2004, 01:28:35 AM »

He says he's the world's greatest paranormal investigator, but his method of investigation is to open a door and if there's a monster, beat the crap out of it....
Guillermo del Toro, Director Hellboy

I have been a fan of Mike Mignola's since his run on the now defunct First Pulishing's Corum Series(1986 and yes I still have them), so naturally I began reading Hellboy back in the nineties (and yes I still have them).  So naturally I've been sitting on the edge of my seat waiting for the Hellboy movie
to come out.

Now for those of you who aren't Hellboy compliant, or even if you are just watch the featurette at the
http://www.sonypictures.com/movies/hellboy/index.html  to get an idea of what I'm babbling about and to put you in the mood for Hellboy RPG goodness.....

Yes I know SJG has already done a Hellboy game but it's based on GURPS and everything that implies.  Sure you can build some BPRD yokel but everybody knows that the guy to play is Hellboy.  Then it hit me. A Singular characters whose personal relationships are paramount and who lives at the intersection of two worlds. It was so obvious that It toke a stroke of genius. Trollbabe=Hellboy, it requires practically no modification without further ado I was looking at a Hellboy character sheet.  

Number 9
Fight 1-8    Brawling, Yes he carries a BF gun,but when it's time to lay the smackdown....
Magic 9-10 Amulet Collection He has a big collection of protective amulets, but is no spellcaster
Social 1-8   Regular Guy (Gal) You just gotta like him....

In the comic Hellboys a really great guy and despite being 6'6" and Devil red makes friends very easy. In the movie the BPRD is some supersecret 'black ops' type agency, I think it's more fun to play Hellbabe like the comic, where it's actually a public organization and people phone them to solve paranormal mysteries not unlike you'd call Varmint Guard about a racoon living in your chimney. I like imagining Hellboy just clomping down the street, blazing red and attracting attention.....

Hellboy rerolls are a little different from a Trollbabes but I think its easy for somebody who's read as much Hellboy as I have to capture the feel.

Rerolls

Amulet
BPRD Backup/Gadget
BF Handgun
New Friend
Big Smack with Stone Hand
Found Item

Relationships
Hellboy has made many buddies throughout all the years he's been helping people, but here are his core relationships

Trevor Bruttenholm   On hand when Hellboy was conjured
Liz Sherman      Pyrokinetic, working/living at BPRD
Abe Sapien      Psychic, Half -Man half fish
BPRD         Bureau for Paranormal Research and Def.

Equipment
BF Handgun
BPRD radio
Belt homing signal
Ammo for BFHG
BPRD Gadget

   And that's about it , go forth and give the supernatural smack  in the mouth.....
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sirogit
Member

Posts: 503


« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2004, 03:51:37 PM »

Intereasting. Do you think it would maim the concept of Hellboy too badly if their were several Hellboys?

One disconnect I can see is that in Hellboy(Not sure, haven't read that much of it.)is quick to disparge his demon contemporaries, considering himself a part of the human world. Even though he's still connected to demons and therefore has status as a crux of the conflict, it's not in the personal/diplomatic way of Trollbabe.
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b_bankhead
Member

Posts: 259


« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2004, 09:50:52 PM »

Quote from: sirogit
Intereasting. Do you think it would maim the concept of Hellboy too badly if their were several Hellboys?

One disconnect I can see is that in Hellboy(Not sure, haven't read that much of it.)is quick to disparge his demon contemporaries, considering himself a part of the human world. Even though he's still connected to demons and therefore has status as a crux of the conflict, it's not in the personal/diplomatic way of Trollbabe.


Hrmm, the idea alway seemed to me to be something to do on those nights when you could only scare up one player, but the structure of Trollbabe is designed to render the traditional 'party' unecessary, it would be possible to have severaly Hellboy continuities running simultaneously that have nothing to do with each other,

And Hellboy's feellings about his heritage, don't seem to change the fact that it comes up as an issue over and over.....

What's a Hellboy Bang?
The thread From a Simulationist into a Narrativist  has a great deal of food for thought on Narravist games particularly the 'mystery' game of which Hellboy is a subset.

What precisely constitutes a 'bang' for Hellboy? A lot of Hellboy stories are actually minor missions, but with the mechanic allowing the scale of the stakes and consequences of a game to be increased in theory ANY campaign could become as important as say 'Seed of Destruction'.

The I think the source of Bangs in a Hellboy game would be the thick file of BPRD paranormal event reports and investigative requests that cross their desk.  For the most part unless something is glaringly important Hellboy seems to get the option of nosing around wherever he wants. The player might be presented with a list like this:

Woman claims child 'changeling', Ireland (File #AX359)

Persistent reports of Disappearances/Spectral Activity
Near deserted village ,Kyoto(File #AN127)

Apparitions of BVM seen, Hungary (File #VC1137)

Mass Slaughter of 167, Yugoslavia (File #2356)

Lake monster tied to disappearances ,Scotland(File#S217)

The player would drive the story by what cases they take, by requesting scenes which reveal the mystery, and by manipulating the scale of the consequences.

In information scenes I would give the player even more power to drive the game by requiring both the gamemaster and the player come up with a piece of mystery to be revealed for this scene (BEFORE the gamemaster reveals his).

Whatever case the Hellboy will take the GM must come up with a salient conflict ,with Stakes and Consequences, the level being on whatever the scale of the game is on, but a LOT of Hellboy stuff is personal scale consequences, but it's his willingness to risk his red hide for one little baby girl as well as the whole world that make Hellboy what he is...

Of course you could jack it all the way up to being a world -ender. It would be Hellboy-like to make whoever does this frame a scene where it happens and the change is revealed, which would make another need 'bang' in it's own right....
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Rob MacDougall
Member

Posts: 160


« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2004, 05:10:42 AM »

Great minds think alike! Doyce Testerman proposed (in passing) using Trollboy for Hellbabe over in this thread: Trollbabe to Amber conversion.

I think this is a great idea, though getting the most out of Trollbabe's "between two worlds" aspect might require a little rethinking of the setting. It's usually pretty clear who the good guys and the bad guys are in a Hellboy story. I'll repeat my comment from there:

Quote
I don't know enough about Amber to comment a lot on that discussion, but let me say I think the Trollbabe/Hellboy suggestion is brilliant too. Some people see the genius of the Trollbabe system, yet are mystified by the requirement that everyone must play a big troll woman with horns and 80s hair. Hellboy and his buddies at the BPRD may be more accessible for gamers who didn't grow up on the Trollbabe source material, yet they actually fit many of the very characteristics that make trollbabes such story-generating wonders: they're caught between two worlds (human and not), they're potentially powerful but often outsiders, they're nearly unique, and every NPC wants to pull them into their plans.

Plus you could call it Trollboy or Hellbabe, which are both great names.

One potential sticking point with a Trollboy conversion is that (I think) Trollbabe scenarios work best when there's some moral ambiguity, thus giving the players lots of options about who is in the right and what is to be done. But the villains in Hellboy are pretty damn villainous. There's not often much question about who to side with. On the other hand, maybe that's a feature rather than a bug. Some shades of grey might really add to those beautiful Mike Mignola blacks.
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