Saturday, August 6, 2016

#RPGaDay 2016: Days 1-6

As happened last year, I got wind of this a little late to start from Day 1, so here are the first six questions, with my answers.

Day 1: Real Dice, dice app, diceless, how do you prefer to 'roll'?

Real dice. Tossing a handful of dice onto the table is so much more satisfying than pushing a button. I especially like rolling dice in Earthdawn, because if your character is really good at something, you roll multiple dice and add them. And there's a chance for each die to explode, meaning if you roll the maximum number on a die, you roll that die again and add it to the total.

Day 2: Best game session since August 2015?

February 12, 2016: The girallon boss fight in my Pathfinder Freeport campaign. The party had to find and deal with a new leader among the girallons and kech of Gorilla Island, who posed a serious threat to the peaceful vanara. The party fought their way past bat-riding kech and a vaguely ape-like guardian daemon before facing off with the girallon priestess. Then, after the shaman fell, they had to fight the even tougher baregara (a demonic ape) that had been possessing her. It was a good, satisfying, tough fight all around--with a CR well above their character level--and my description of the fiend manifesting from the dead ape's blood was a nicely gruesome detail that they won't soon forget.

Day 3: Character moment you are proudest of?

Once, in a Buffy the Vampire Slayer game, the heroes traveled to Tir na n'Og to rescue the Slayer PC's little sister, who had been kidnapped by fairies as a baby. Each PC could make one request, then face a challenge from Queen Mab in order to win the desired boon. The Slayer faced a challenge for her sister's freedom, but then we learned the sister had one good friend in this world, another stolen human child who had also been raised here as a slave. This other girl had nobody to help her, and my character (Trick, the Slayer's best friend) had nothing she wanted for herself, so she offered to face a challenge to free Sheila. Trick was a fencer, so had to duel the queen's champion to first blood. She was very quick--and very lucky!--and won.

When the gang got back home, Trick begged her parents (who had only recently learned about their daughter's dangerous "extracurriculars") to let Sheila stay with them while they figured out what to do with her. Her parents readily agreed, and when it became clear that Sheila had no family to return to, they acted as her foster parents and eventually adopted her. Trick, an only child, found gaining a sister to be an unexpected responsibility--and a blessing, as Sheila provided her with some much-needed focus and inspiration. Trick had never done anything so completely selfless as saving Sheila--and it was the first time her parents actually approved of her heroics without any reservations--so she always considered that to be her own best moment.

Day 4: Most impressive thing another character did?

I've been running occasional RPGs for my kids for the past few years now. In a 1st-level Pathfinder adventure, my son's sorceress ended up being the last PC standing against a goblin fighter/rogue. These two had a running battle through the goblins' hideout as the sorceress narrowly dodged attack after attack from the leader, while casting acid splash over and over again. Her amazing luck held out long enough to plink the leader to death without getting hit once in return (which could have been instantly fatal). It turned an imminent TPK into a resounding victory.

Day 5: What story does your group tell about your character?

Oh boy, there are so many they could tell about Trick, both good and bad. (She was quite the wild child!) Gods, trickster spirits, and other meddlesome entities put in appearances with an alarming rate in that game, and the PC and NPC cast included a somewhat absurd number of divinely-empowered champions. At one point, Trick became a Maenad, a champion of Dionysus, but later regretted her decision and wanted to get free of the god. She happened to be friends with the trickster god Raven, who tried to intervene on her behalf with a bit of reality-alteration magic. That backfired badly: instead of making her Raven's champion, she ended up as Puck's. Raven couldn't undo the spell without Puck's consent, so Trick had to persuade the other trickster to give her up. While bitching at Raven for his latest screw-up, she had discovered that his interest in her made him very sensitive to her moods: her tantrum gave him a splitting headache. When she threatened Puck with similarly loud and stubborn resistance. he grudgingly released her and reality reset. Ironically, this debacle gave her the courage to stand up to Dionysus directly. When she did so, and her refused to free her, she recklessly attacked him rather than submitting. This display of spirit finally impressed him enough to grant her a way out--at a price.

Day 6: Most amazing thing a game group did for their community?

I have not belonged to any gaming group that has helped the community as a gaming group, but I do know a number of gamers (mostly professional acquaintances) who have played in charity game nights for various causes.

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