The last time that I blogged about our ongoing campaign one of the characters was possessed by a demon and left to rot in the basement of a cabin. We followed up at the next time with the introduction of his player’s new character The Professor.
This time the introduction was successful. Introducing new characters might be a little problematic at sometimes (later on that matter) but this worked. I asked the players questions to tie the professor into their group and help to explain why they would trust in him. The players redistributed the Trust they had to his predecessor and some even gave the new guy some Trust.
During this session I was kind of hoping we would get closer to the goal of the campaign – finding the lost (and cursed) gold treasure of the characters’ ancestors. I was however prepared for a bit of side-roading as I knew there was an old manor between them and their goal.
At first the manor was simply there to act as the final obstacle between the group and their goal. But then I had some free time and got to thinking that I needed to write a Front to be used as an introductory point to this hack. As planning goes I could have done better but at least it worked.
The group entered the ominous mansion and went on searching the premises. The Cox brothers encountered some death echoes of people who had died in the manor while two other characters decided to check out the upstairs. The mansion acted as a maze and played around with the perception of the characters. Nothing was like it seemed. Up until they heard the chainsaw.
After an obscure battle with a ten foot high giant with chainsaw and a native american mask most of the characters had lost their consciousness. They had managed to kill the grotesque but one of the Cox brothers had been sawn in half. We had an epic montage to describe the feelings of the surviving brother (complete with Queen – Who Wants to Live Forever playing at the background). And as the brothers were sometimes able to see ghost I naturally allowed them to unit for one last beyond-the-grave thumbs up.
It was a great session!
After two weeks we managed to get together to continue from this. Naturally we needed to introduce another character. This time Sami (the player of the Cox brother who had died) wanted to play The Asset, an agent of some secret service. He was hesitant to get into the game with a new character without much time to think of his background. But after we talked about it a bit we came into the conclusion that Agent Brown was something we wanted to throw in asap.
This time we did not go with the whole “you had some time to get to know each other and now it is time to explain how you built your trust”-thing we did earlier. And I kind of hope we had.
Agent Brown had a background working for a shadow agency. He had files about all other characters and we decided that his angle and buy-in was that he was willing to share this information with other character as he wanted to help them. Agent Brown followed the other characters to the ruins of the mansion and beyond. He shared some of his information before introducing himself hoping that the group would have a time to discuss about him beforehand.
When he actually did turn up the whole situation turned into a Mexican standoff instantaneously. I had guessed we would end up like that but the scale was beyond my wildest expectations.
On the other hand I understand that the characters need something to build on and that players like to keep the game believable. But on the other hand I would like to expect that the players can use their meta-information about this character being a PC.
We ended up arguing should the character be killed in the spot or allowed to be taken along with suspicion. The whole thing went on and on and on and ended up in my books as something as unnecessary as the “discussion about the rules” in the middle of a session as happened last summer.
Notice that I’m not pointing any fingers here. Everyone of us could have handled the situation better and I hope that we learned from it.
Luckily we were able to salvage the situation and get on with the game. The characters did find the gold. And a little extra.
The gold was guarded by a ghost from 1880s and it was of a character we had played previously. I allowed Sami to take control of this ghost and gave him the Ghost playbook from Monsterhearts. It was kind of an interesting experiment. Using a playbook from a different hack but I think it worked well enough so that I might just do it some time later.
In the final confrontation the characters were able to get rid of the ghost. Unluckily they did end up trapped with the gold in a dark and unclimbable tunnel with one character going dark side to save them. On the top of things The Professor that was just introduced during the previous session died falling from the high cliff.
Introducing at least one new character during the next session might prove to be an really interesting encounter.