RPGaDay 2017 7th August

7th) What was your most impactful RPG session?

Once again another difficult question to answer as while I can think of numerous impactful games many of those came from looking back after a campaign and seeing how the story arcs had come together. I could mention my first campaign of Torg which saw my bitter ex-cop descend into darkness to become the very thing that had broken him in the first place. Or I could talk about the excellent Smallville campaign by Stephen of Step into RPGs where my ordinary, boring and completely un-powered sidekick character ended up having to step up because those who should have been saving the day were too distracted with their own messy relationships (seriously, Smallville is amazing and such an underrated system). Or I might discuss my introduction to Legend of the Five Rings where my samurai went from having everything he could have dreamed of to a tragic tale worthy of the pillow books of Rokugan.

But those are campaigns and the question was session. Which goes to a game where I was GM rather than players. A Demon Hunters adventure where the players decided to metaphorically turn left instead of right. We hadn’t even started the adventure but were in what was the transition period from the previous mission. One PC was recuperating, having recently been turned into a vampire. The rest decided they wanted to get flowers for her and being a rookie GM I made an offhand comment that that section of the Warehouse (an interdimensional essentially infinite storage space) had been declared off limits for some reason or another. I’d been trying to redirect them back to the job at hand (I’d yet to come across the idea of “Yes and…”), instead they ventured off into the unknown assuming the comment was a plot hook.

We’d not even started the adventure and they’d already managed to break it. I was flummoxed. I could handle players getting creative in solving puzzles or side stepping encounters but bypassing the entire adventure? That was new and from the look on my face they knew how much they’d thrown me.

So I did the only thing that was fair, I literally screwed up my notes, admitted how much they’d evaded my prep and called a 10 minute beer break. Looking back I can’t remember the details of what I’d planned but I can tell you that the adventure we ended up with was far more creative and entertaining. It eventually led to the Chapter imploding in on itself with the vampire PC giving in to her hunger for blood and turning not one but two of the other characters after having been attacked. We ended on an epic fade out with the Chapter fighting amongst themselves in a grand library while trying to rules lawyer their way out of a Demonic contract.

It was amazing and taught me a lot of vital lessons about GMing.

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2 thoughts on “RPGaDay 2017 7th August”

  1. Was this a one-shot adventure, or did it keep going? I would love to hear what happened after that epic fade out.
    Also, yeah, that Smallville campaign was pretty fun.

    1. It was the end of a short campaign, 2 adventures over 7 or 8 sessions. We’d started the game with one character (a sniper) having being terrified of vampires after his previous team was wiped out by them. They encountered one during the first adventure and one of the other characters was turned but retained enough control to not go evil.

      Towards the end of the second adventure the sniper decided he couldn’t trust the vampire so tried to sneakily take her out by modifying his sniper rifle to fire stakes. Unfortunately he botched his roll so we said he’d tried to do so by just stuffing a stake down the barrel which then exploded when he fired it. He was left heavily wounded and the smell of blood finally pushed her over the edge. In the resulting fight he was turned as was a second character. We ended up fading out before the combat finished as the session had always been intended as the final one.

      I’d always hoped we’d find out what had happened in a later campaign by sending a group of new PCs in to investigate but we never got around to it.

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