Looks like 2014 is going to be a banner year for gaming, kicking off the first gaming session on Saturday with 4-5 players around the table for a semi-regular session.
A couple that use to sit at the table in the late 1990’s and early ‘00’s are making a return after dropping back due to life events; children and now their kids are a little older they feel it’s time to come back to the table. I guess Boxing Day had stirred up a lot of old memories of sitting around the table, chucking dice and socializing with others while adventure forth in their imagination.
Anyhoo, it’s good to get them back again. Even if it’s just a casual thing. It’s always good to see old friends.
Is one of my favorite role playing games since it’s such a diverse setting, a city on the edge of realities merging together in a state where things can change at the drop of a hat. Even though the mechanics where a little awkward at the time, but I ported the rules from Feng Shui: Shadowfist Role Playing to it since it’s the sister game to it when it was released a few years later.
So when I started running Feng Shui elements of Nexus: The Infinite City spilled over into that campaign. I was also heavily influenced by TORG as well at the time so my campaign world had a basis in the Shadowfist but it crew and expanded and spiraled into a whole world of epic gaming. My players where entralled, enchanted and always came back for more, more, more. It was a very cool time in my life and the story just flowed freely from whatever I imagined and the players loved it.
Though, like all good things… it ended. Life events; work, moving, marriage, family, etc., took my players from the table and out into the world. It’s good that I kept notes of what happened and little scenes that went on, because like Elvis once said “memories sweeten through the ages just like wine”.
My game on Saturday was a bust since one of the players didn’t want to delve into a fantasy game because his other group is involved in Pathfinder. I haven’t played a fantasy game in a bit and thought it was time for me to do so… oh well… that put a damper on things.
Soooooooooooo hopefully, the Saturday coming there will be a game of sorts… since I’m involved in a play once again and in December my first three weekends will be on the stage playing Guard #2.
You know when we game we seem to always talk about our adventures in the first person. It’s great when gamers get together in public and start chatting away about the game/adventure we played. Though, this can lead down a dark road of police involvement.
Case in point: Top Secret.
I had been running a Top Secret game in high school it seemed to be my game to run. In one of the adventures the agents had to break into a bank to get a microchip out of a security box. I ran the adventure at school as part of the game club we had. It was two hours to do before the late bus left at 5:15. So as the players where deciding what to do, I had to call it for the evening and we pick it up right where we left off the next session.
That night as I was at home I get a call from one of my players. We didn’t have a private line, since this is early 80’s and country phones where just party lines at the time. You can tell whose home the call was meant for by the ring: one long, one short meant it was for us.
One of my players was excited about the adventure and went in discussing on how to break into the bank to get the stuff and maybe while they where at it steal some loot as well. The bulk of the conversation went like this:
Me: What about the security guards.
Him: Well if there is any we are going to have to bring some knock out gas just encase. I don’t want no firefight if possible because that will attract attention.
Me: Okay, so have you thought of a getaway plan?
Him: I’ll ask “Mike” what he has in store. He’s the one with the great driving skill.
You see in the first person. So we went on for several minutes and then hung up the phone. The next day as the school bus was pulling into the high school. There was the principal, the vice principal, and some guy in a three piece suit and two police officers waiting at the stop. Before the students got off the principal and a police officer came on. Looked around and spotted me sitting there and the principal told me to come with them.
I was freaking out at the moment, wondering what the hell happened. As we walked up the steps I see the player I was talking too sitting at the office with his mother and he was surprise as I was. I sat in the principals office when the officer wanted to know if I was planning a bank heist. I looked stun and said no.
He said they had on good authority that a crime was being planned and that I was involved in it. I said no, not I just that we’re involved playing a game.
"What kind of game involves stealing and harming people?" the guy asked.
"A role playing game," I replied. "It’s a game we play were players pretend to be spies like James Bond. I have the adventure and game in my backpack".
The guy looked in my backpack and picked out Top Secret and looked at it. He then looked at the adventure I had written, the map of the bank, the notes where the security camera was and some random other information as well.
"Is this like Dungeons and Dragons game?" he asked.
"Yes, it’s by the same company." I told him.
He only shook his head, put the game back down and him and the principal, vice principal chatted in low tones and then they said I could go.
"Mike" and his mother where out there and she knew about role playing games because we gamed over at his place every now and then as well. And she knew it was a big misunderstanding as well, since someone else on a party line picked up the phone and listened in on our conversation. And then they called the police to inform them of a crime that was going to happen the next day. I’m surprised the school didn’t stop us from playing Top Secret since it had banned us from D&D and this is one of the reasons why I was running TS to begin with.
And that’s my brush with the law involving role playing.
Coffee: A necessity around the game table.
I’m seriously thinking of running Atlantis: The Second Age RPG campaign when September rolls around. The problem is 90% of my current group of gamers will be gone; off to various colleges in the fall. Leaving one fellow that’s been around the table for 15+ years whose been through various changes as well. Though, the problem is now trying to recruit new players and that’s pretty well like finding a needle in a haystack in a small dying town.
My daughter and her friends will take flight and will not return to the table on a regular weekly basis, and it saddens me but like they say all good things must come to an end.
So last night, after a little discussion with a player, I decided to download the errata for Dungeons & Dragons 3rd edition PHB just for the hell of it and see what I was missing in these little corrections/adjustments that were overlooked when it was printed. I glanced through the errata and there were a slew of tiny changes; telling what to omit and what to pencil into the rule book. And, I could understand why my player wanted me to download the errata for a rule on a specific subject. I, as a GM, went with my gut. I wasn’t going to pause a game just to check an errata and that’s why I waited til the session was over before doing research on the ‘net.
And that’s why the Gods invented house rules; since the rules are just guidelines to follow and what didn’t make sense or seemed omitted was improvised. I really don’t mind improvising and what not since the best part of gaming is the storytelling; opening up the theatre of the mind and drawing the players into the realm. I presume it’s just one of the reasons why 3.5 was released which corrected and tidied up some, though I didn’t purchased it when it did.
I explained before I was fine and happy with AD&D though my players had wanted to take that step up in the 3E and had pooled together and bought the three core rulebooks for me. God bless ‘em.
So, last night characters were generated for the 3E system; players decided what race they wanted to play and picked a template and away we went.
Gaming by Candlelight.
I have a player who I think has a disorder of some kind since if I mention that I am going to run a game. He goes online and downloads every freakin’ thing about the game, sourcebooks, modules and articles and then he studies the rules like a text book. He knows what skills he wants and what skills affect abilities, so he can max out the character potentials.
During the game he rattles on and on and on about the game mechanics, and everything else that involves with the system. He doesn’t role play but roll plays. This takes the air out of the tires for the other players around the table who do not care about what game systems are, mechanics and what dice to use because for them it’s a learn as you go process.
It’s irksome to me.