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Author Topic: Indie Monday (Oct 15, 2002): Fighter-D Alpha Planescape (2)  (Read 4377 times)
Zak Arntson
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« on: October 15, 2002, 09:54:19 AM »

We played Fighter-D Alpha again. You can see the first thread at: http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3744 It takes the Ability & Fact system from Donjon and adopts it for a Street Fighter-style video game mentality. It's still being tweaked and perfected, but it's near-perfect for a group that ignores things like game balance and all shares a knowledge of fighting games.

The Characters have changed somewhat, so I'll repeat them all here:
Henry the Ninja
Power: 1, Actions: 1
Abilities: Obfuscation (3), Know Trivial History (1), Charm Others (2), Use Ninja Tools (3), Jump (3)
Special Words: envelop, silent
Special Moves: Silent Swoop (1)
Items: Katana (4), Femur (0), Bag o' Shuriken (2), Screaming Fruit (0)

The Mummy
Power: 1, Actions: 1
Abilities: 6th Sense Sight (1), Egyptial Martial Arts (3), Occult Knowledge (2), Architectural Knowledge (2), Recruit Slaves for Pyramid Buildnig (3)
Special Words: sandstorm, mist
Special Moves: Snake Mist (1)*
Items: Protective Coffin (2), 3 slave boys (0)
* - To perform this move is hold back, up-to-towards, 360 clockwise, right, right, A.

Goro, the Four-Armed Thing
Power: 1, Actions: 1
Abilities: Surprising Revelation (2), Create a Path (2), Sleight of Hands & Feet (2), Four Forearm Stonewall (2), Fuck Some Shit Up (3)
Special Words: crush, arms
Special MOves: Crushing Whirlwind Arms
Items: Mighty Stone Axe of Mass Destruction (3), Poleaxe (2)

Ghost Samurai
Power: 1, Actions: 1
Abilities: Swordplay (4), Grappling (2), Sense Supernatural (1), See/Communicate Dead (2), Flying (2)
Special Words: ghost, samurai
Items: Boshi Katana (2), Ghost Familiar Upped (2)

---

To recap: The part is looking for the Sun Quill found in the Impressive Ruins of Gondarr. The key to the portal to the Ruins is known to the worms in a cemetery. The group has just found the location of the worms from a mind-controlled (and subsequently destroyed) guardian zombie.

The party (sans Samurai, who hasn't appeared yet) then finds the crypt that holds the worm bar, only it's about the size of a children's shoebox. Surprisingly, they don't just lift it up and intimidate the worms inside. Ninja leans down and calls into the crypt. A worm bartender with an apron wriggles out. To make the story short, the bartender is convinced to find the worm, who (using rolled Facts) describes the portal's key (a bone from the cemetery), knows the key for their return, and is wearing a gigantic gold medallion (like a little fantasy Flava Flav).

So the party decides to look for a crypt instead of getting their hands dirty with digging. The closest crypt is a gigantic stone pagoda. So they enter and viola! There's a Ghost Samurai. "You have freed me from my prison!" he says. Another Player announces (mimicking a video game message window), "Ghost Samurai joins the party."

Aside: Using cheesy video games lets us throw logic out the window. Why does the Ghost Samurai join the party? No reason. He's just there and is added to the roster.

While the party looks for bones, Mummy's Player fails a roll and really wants to narrate. All of a sudden, skeletons fly up all over the place! So I stop play to create a Skeleton monster. Everyone's facing a pair of nasty skeletons, straight out of the old Sinbad movies!

Aside: I need to streamline monster creation on the fly, since nearly all monsters are improvised.

Aside, note on combat: Combat in Fighter-D Alpha goes like this: Initiative Roll (similar to Donjon, only with less Actions per Power (read: Actions per Level)), on your Action your make an attack roll. Attack rolls consist of an opposed roll using Power + Ability + Items. 1 Success = 1 Fact + 1 Damage. The combat that follows happened in two rounds of initiative rolls.

So the Ninja chops one skeleton into confetti (using a Fact to tuck a bone away in his possession for later), and cuts another in half, leaving it to crawl on the ground. Goro obliterates two more with his massive axe. Ninja fails, and I give him some facts. He manages to kill one, but as he lands to the ground, he feels the point of a knife against his back! The Mummy gets a zillion successes, so we decide that two more have burst from the ground to attack him; one gets eaten in one massive gulp, another explodes when the Mummy's hands glow blue, one is accidentally mashed by the Mummy's coffin and the last skeleton is inexplicably dead with a slave boy standing on top of it, triumphant.

Aside: As each skeleton dies, a gigantic coin bounces out of its body with a "bing!" sound.

Ninja disposes of his last skeleton with a Special Move: Silent Swoop. He flies up into the corner of the screen (video game logic, remember), spins around in place and flies back down. The screen flashes red, then a gigantic Rising Sun appears and spins, then game fades back into view and the skeleton is cut to pieces. All completely silently, of course.

Ghost Samurai and Goro then combine their attacks to perform one gigantic Special Move. The Ghost turns into a whirlwind which envelops Goro's legs. Like a gigantic four-armed genie, Goro is flown into the air and then leaps down to smash the final skeleton with the strength of a mighty whirlwind!

Time to get treasure! Goro ditches his four-armed chainmail and finds a stone hilt that improves his axe. Ninja finds a magic katana that has more and redder dragons on it than his previous one (his old katana takes one look at the new one and shatters, knowing it can't compete). Mummy finds two more slave boys (somehow trapped in a crypt that has been sealed for centuries). Ghost Samurai finds a lantern that improves his Ghost Familiar (turning into a Ghost Familiar Upped).

Aside: We realize the Mummy has a growing entourage of slaves and wonder how they follow him. We established that his coffin fits a Mummy and one slave, and we decide that his coffin also fits all the slaves (without the Mummy). We then rule that his coffin has a carrying capacity of an infinite number of boy slaves, and 1 Mummy = (Infinity - 1) Boy Slaves.

The party now has a bone. They return to the bar and realize they forget why they're helping this guy to get the Sun Quill. Surely not because they're kind? The Mummy convinces the man to offer his house, life savings and horse.

The group goes into the portal, only to find themselves waist deep in mud. They see a gigantic glowing circle in the mud, so they head on over there (it is the Sun Quill, you see). At this point, I encourage the Players to make rolls so we have Facts with which to improvise. The glowing circle is a layer of mud floating on a gigantic lake, beneath lies a massive glowing stone dome.

Once the group finds a way into the dome (oh, and one Fact was used to call it an "air-filled dome"), I call for a single word from each of them. This is my way of continuing the adventure.

Aside: Asking for one or two words from each Player is going to be the default adventure creation mode in Fighter-D.

I get ancient, mysterious, monster and Yiddish. The other Players disliked Yiddish so much that one retracted "monster" and replaced it with Non-Yiddish. When Yiddish meets Non-Yiddish, according to our digression, they cancel each other with a massive release of energy.

So, the group sees a pair of gigantic lobster monsters surrounded by worshipping crabs. One lobster-thing is chanting and the other busts out with "Oy, you schlep! Stop chanting!" (my Yiddish is limited to what little my Mom passed on to me).

To be continued next week ...

---

In closing, this entire session was improved with no preparation, yet it was very fun and very satisfying. All of us had a great time playing. Asking Players for a single word when my imagination slows down combined with the Fact system keeps things running very smoothly.
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