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So at the end of February I signed up to join the Monte Cook Games Asset Team. This morning I got word back (the delay being expected, what with their Kickstarter) that I’ve been accepted onto the team. This is generally good news for me, since it gives me an excuse to get out of the house regularly to go offer to run games for new people and gives my wife an excuse to do the same.
So one requirement is to showcase all their games without bias; other than not having No Thank You, Evil! at the moment – largely because we don’t have children or any plans to have any – I can cover the current range of MCG products; Numenera, The Strange, and the Cypher System itself. As such, I’m going to need to figure out what I intend to do at the FLGS that I’ve already pegged as our best location for anything like this; there are other stores that happen to have RPG selections, but primarily deal as comic shops, secondary or tertiary as game stores.
So what, then, am I planning to do to showcase Monte Cook Games to prospective players? I aim to set up a bi-weekly event at the store, every other Thursday, running a different game or genre using the stuff MCG has produced; while I’m not likely to use the premade adventures (as ever, no plot survives contact with the players), I’m also experienced enough to not really need them.
So here are the blurb versions of what I plan to have as short sample games:
- Numenera: Ruin Runners – Here, the prospective players are invited to go on the Ninth World version of things like the American Ninja Warrior TV shows, teaming up on an excursion into an ancient ruin of the former worlds. Obstacles, traps, hostile (and non-hostile but problematic) creatures, and more, all in search of cyphers and artifacts from the past worlds. As an added challenge, another team is moving through a different section of the same ruin, and things can be done by one side that cause trouble for the other (GM Intrusions and chances to be clever). The winner is whoever brings back the most impressive and/or largest quantity of valuable and useful numenera.
- The Strange: Planescape – Go from Earth to the enclosed ring-city of Sigil, where all kinds of fantastic creatures exist; the Cage has gone far beyond its original state as a D&D locale, now playing host to an array of creatures from across the chaosphere. The rule of neutrality remains enforced; the politics and power struggles of the Strange and the recursions of Earth are allowed, but everyone has best behave or risk attracting the phenomenal power of the Lady of Pain. Why are the players here? They need to take part in an auction to acquire a powerful device, lest it fall into the hand analogues of any number of beings who would use it to do the baseline reality of Earth harm.
- Cypher System Fantasy: Delve – There is only one place in the world where the strange folks who become adventurers can feel at home, and that is Ptolus, the City by the Spire. Players will have access to fantasy heroes, new to the city and looking to get a name; and what better way to pull that off than grabbing their gear and going spelunking in the dark places under the streets? Even better, there are posters up with tasks for people to go looking to fulfill if they want to earn some coin, build their rep, and sate their hunger for adventure!
- Cypher System Sci-Fi: Space Hulk – The characters are the crew of a rescue and salvage ship. Most of the time, they go out to a distress beacon, patch up a damaged vessel, make sure they get paid, and go home. This time, though, it’s a salvage op; they answered the beacon only to find that the ship shows signs of damage and no signs of life. Time to get to work tearing out the parts worth the trouble before slapping a claim beacon for one of the big reprocessing rigs, right? Of course, they have to do a sweep first, and it turns out the ship isn’t as lifeless as they thought at first.
- Cypher System Horror: Rigor Mortis – A corporate experiment got out of hand, bio-engineering went awry, and now there are zombies. The twist is that the players wake up undead in a corporate lab, and they certainly didn’t volunteer to be guinea pigs for the experiment. They know who did this to them, and a little exploring reveals that the entire facility is on lockdown – so the people responsible might be around still for them to get revenge on. On the other hand, they’re really hungry and those other survivors look kind of tasty – and there’s a ravenous voice whispering in the back of their heads to feast. It’s a race to see if they can hold onto their humanity long enough to get the people responsible for the mess!
- Cypher System Superheroes: Battle for Neopolis – A straight-up battle between a crew of superheroes and the supervillain who wants to conquer the city of Neopolis for his own purposes! Intended to showcase power shifts, mob rules, and threat escalation for a high-power metahuman brawl through the city streets – but players will need to keep in mind the collateral damage they’re inflicting if they don’t want to stand triumphant in the middle of a ruin. Additional obstacles in the form of people trying to be helpful, stray disasters set off by the fighting, and the interference of police (and possibly military, if things go into the worst case scenario of collateral damage) forces will certainly crop up
That caps off the present blurbs for what I aim to try to pull off; as I do them, you can all expect to see an after-action report on how things played out if things go well. As I near the end of the list, we’ll see what other scenarios and setups I add; this list should take me to close to the release of the newest setting book for the CSR, Gods of the Fall.
Until next time, folks.