You can find part one here.
We left off on Saturday afternoon. A quick bite and it was off to…
We played in Lucas Oil Stadium, down on the field, which for a fan of the NFL is always a cool experience. This was the game we wondered most about since it was run entirely through cards instead of dice (based on the Powered By the Apocolypse system). But it worked extremely well. Having the deck there made combat run really quick, and it made for a very easy setup experience when we were pulling out backstories and tragedies, which helped craft the narrative for the players but also had a real tangible affect on the gameplay. The deck of NPCs was nice as well, since the GM was able to lay things out that much quicker. Even the act of figuring out our location and issues were done through a “draft” where each one took a chance to mark down something about the base. What kind of base, what our strengths were, what our liabilities might be, etc. It meant that we were able to get into the game pretty quick.
As to the game itself, we had a pretty good group, and with the scenario that was set up (Lee’s character was attempting to overthrow the people in charge and the rest of us needed to break him out of confinement before his execution), we actually did a fair amount of role-playing to the point that our GM made note of only having maybe 45 minutes left and we hadn’t encountered any zombies.
Which, like the best zombie stories, the monsters might have been us all along.
Saturday (Day 3)
Things from The Flood
A sequel to Tales from the Loop that exists in a damaged 1990s era. You’re still playing kids, though these kids are more on the older side (among our Players we stuck to mostly 15 year olds). But instead of new technology that is all bright and shiny, the world experienced a Flood, and now that technology has some sort of blight attached to it. Where Loop is about wonder from the innocence of a child, I feel like Flood is the step we all have to make in realizing the world isn’t always the nicest place. That means rebelling against that world.
Like Loop or Alien or any of Free League’s games, the system just works really well. With both a simplicity to it, but also allowing you to court doom by “pushing” your dice rolls, but only if you then take Stress. We avoided being eaten by a T-Rex, avoided getting run off the road by a Johnny Cab (effectively from Total Recall), and stopped the world from experiencing a complete meltdown of time… all the while saving out classmate from certain doom.
All in the day’s life when you’re in the Flood.
One of the Mork Borg inspired games, this one took place during the Golden Age of Piracy… in a Dark Carribean. All sorts of nasty monsters roamed the land and seas. Ghost ships attacked without warning, and strange ruins might lead to your doom or treasure to last you forever.
This one made full use of minatures, which was a nice thing to see at the convention. Since my group only plays online, I;m not sure when the last time we had minatures during a game.
The overall character setup was fairly straightforward and contained on one sheet of paper. However, if you are unfamiliar with how you are supposed to proceed, there are a couple of spots which weren’t quite as intuative as you might think, causing a couple of us to stumble a bit. Since the game is very OSR, there are limited hit points and the likelihood of a character dying pretty much seems assured. In fact, Egg’s characetr began with one whole hit point. Luckily, the GM was prepared and when Egg died, his character came back as a Skeleton (so we was able to continue playing with the rest of us).
Having played AD&D 1st edition for a long time, I am familiar with how deadly it can be, so I think that makes this game more of one to be enjoyed at a convention and less like one that would work with a campaign.
Sunday (Day 4)
Sunday is the day of trying to get any last part of the Dealer’s Room seen before we head out around 1-2 in order to not get home too late (after it was all done and the driving was done, I entered my house around 12:30-ish, so one of the earlier times for sure). We all noticed the number of signage that mentioned selling out of something. Whether that was books or accessories or what-have-you, it was both impressive how many we saw (much more than any of us had seen in previous years). Which I take as a good sign that people were ready to support gaming and art and anything and everything else that was there during the weekend.
I’m already looking forward to next year!
John McGuire is the writer of the sci-fi novel: The Echo Effect.
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