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Darren Watts

Quote of the Week from my gaming group...

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I just remembered another funny moment from two weeks ago. Low-fantasy game set in "real" Medieval Europe circa 1000 AD. The PCs are in Constantinople, and 2 PCs have wandered off on their own: a Welshman and an Irishman. I figure this is the perfect opportunity to introduce a key NPC, so as they're passing through the forum I describe a crowd that has gathered to hear some guy preaching, and describe his appearance and how he's mesmerized the crowd, and I take a breath to start in on my prepared monologue...

 

Player 1: "Wait, what language is he speaking?"

GM: "Um, well he's preaching to the masses so it has to be in Greek...Crap, neither of you speak Greek do you?"

Player 1 & 2: "Nope."

Player 3: "I speak Greek."

Player 4: "Me too. Shame we're on the other side of town..."

GM: [sigh] "Well whatever the hell he's saying, it sounds important. Sure has the crowd worked up. No idea what it's about tho."

Player 2: "Dodged THAT plot hook!"

 

And that, children, is why most Fantasy RPG settings have some sort of common tongue!

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Oh, one more from last week. The 5 PCs and their 10 retainers, seeking shelter from a sudden storm, are spending the night at a farmhouse and barn.
The two characters with Survival have gone out braving the storm to hunt; both make their Rolls by a lot, enough to feed everyone and pay the farmer for his trouble...

 

Priest: "Eh, I pay the farmer for one of his sheep, give him a little more than it's worth. We cook and eat that."

[outraged laughter and "Oh no you DIDN'T!" from the hunters]

GM: "So you return to the barn carrying a freshly-killed stag between you, only to find everyone gathered around the fire chowing down on roast mutton."

Ranger: "Freaking rich people! Got a problem? Throw freaking money at it! Just typical!"

Priest: [holds out a mutton leg] "Want some?"

Ranger: [takes it] "Well of course, thank you, but that's not the point!"

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I just remembered another funny moment from two weeks ago. Low-fantasy game set in "real" Medieval Europe circa 1000 AD. The PCs are in Constantinople, and 2 PCs have wandered off on their own: a Welshman and an Irishman. I figure this is the perfect opportunity to introduce a key NPC, so as they're passing through the forum I describe a crowd that has gathered to hear some guy preaching, and describe his appearance and how he's mesmerized the crowd, and I take a breath to start in on my prepared monologue...

 

Player 1: "Wait, what language is he speaking?"

GM: "Um, well he's preaching to the masses so it has to be in Greek...Crap, neither of you speak Greek do you?"

Player 1 & 2: "Nope."

Player 3: "I speak Greek."

Player 4: "Me too. Shame we're on the other side of town..."

GM: [sigh] "Well whatever the hell he's saying, it sounds important. Sure has the crowd worked up. No idea what it's about tho."

Player 2: "Dodged THAT plot hook!"

 

And that, children, is why most Fantasy RPG settings have some sort of common tongue!

 

 

 

 

Yeah we had a similiar problem a while back.

There was a Flyer with a clue in the city-marketplace.

All players were unable to read or write

.....

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So, with a few players missing for various reasons, and a guest-player joining us, we decided to play a champions one-off.

 

Our cast:

Arsenal: Power-suited inventor

Blaze - Indiscriminate thrower of fire

Golden - Light-based energy beams

Dr. Specter - Mystic Master

Dragon's Hand - Martial Artist/Gadgeteer

Sapphire: The one from the Champions team.

 

***

 

[The scenario starts out with the GM explaining how we're a newly-founded superhero team. Since we're so new, we're a little short on resources.]

 

GM [describing our base]: ... well, no it doesn't have any sleeping quarters or bedrooms. It's just got a couple rooms for meeting in; a small kitchenette with an mini-fridge, microwave and toaster oven; your 'monitor room' has a police scanner, a television and an out of date computer...

 

Dr. Specter [OOC]: So, rather than a Hall of Justice, it's really more of a Clubhouse of Justice.

 

GM: Pretty much.

 

***

 

[We hear about a report of an armored car robbery over the police scanner.]

 

Dr. Specter [OOC]: Quick! To the Freedom Jet... Oh, wait.

 

Dragon's Hand [OOC]: Does anyone have a car?

 

***

 

Dragon's Hand: The Dragon's Hand hopes that your gentleman friend at least purchased for you edible goods before physical intimacy.

 

***

 

Blaze: Do we have a line to the police or the government?

 

Dr. Specter: Yeah. It's called 9-1-1.

 

***

 

Golden: You don't have any money.

 

Dragon's Hand: The Dragon's Hand brought the cash from the swear jar.

 

***

 

Dragon's Hand: The Dragon's Hand apologizes for not having an inside voice.

 

***

 

[After investigating the crime scene, Arsenal cobbles together a device for tracking the energy signature of the bad guys' weapons.]

 

Dr. Specter: Yay! We have a plasma detector. Unfortunately, we no longer have a toaster oven or stereo.

 

***

 

[During a discussion of our not yet having named our team.]

 

Blaze: We're not quite the Magnificent Seven.

 

Arsenal: We're sufficient.

 

Blaze: Yes! We're the Sufficient Six.

 

***

 

Dragon's Hand: How many times does the Dragon's Hand have to speak in the third person before you remember his name?!

 

***

 

Dragon's Hand: The Dragon's Hand is rubber... and you're glue!

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Pathfinder: Xcrawl

 

The Cast:

 

Drew Blood: Female Human Barbarian from Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Yes, she has the accent)
Scarlet: Female Dhampir Assassin
Silver Sorceress: Female Human Sorceress (Dragon Blooded)
Lacey Cravat: Gender Confused Dwarven Cleric

 

The Action:

 

GM: Last time we played, you did something in a dungeon.

 

Drew Blood (OOC): That is the most epic recap, EVAR!

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Running a one-shot at a game day fundraiser. The players have decided they need to vandalize the botanic gardens, so the Mayor's daughter will be forced to hold her wedding indoors. (Long story, it made sense at the time. Sort of.)

 

Gadgeteer PC: "I rig up an automatic chainsaw...on a roomba, and set it to run around cutting down all the trees!"

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Running a one-shot at a game day fundraiser. The players have decided they need to vandalize the botanic gardens, so the Mayor's daughter will be forced to hold her wedding indoors. (Long story, it made sense at the time. Sort of.)

 

Gadgeteer PC: "I rig up an automatic chainsaw...on a roomba, and set it to run around cutting down all the trees!"

Let me guess:

Death threaths for the Bride.

They really failed at convincing her to hold the wedding indoors.

So this was the best idea to move it inwards?

 

Sounds about right.

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Actually it was a villains game, the PCs were trying to kidnap the bride, and they needed to move the wedding indoors so the vampire PC didn't combust in mid-kidnapping. Of course it turned out both bride & groom were superheroes getting married in their SIDs, so things got complicated fast...

 

But same basic idea, yeah. ;)

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It's been a while since I've posted quotes from my Champions campaign. 

 

The week before, the heroes of Just Cause fought Secession Squad as the southern supers disrupted the live televised vice presidential debates.  The heroes had gotten an inkling that the Squad was going to pull something, but without proof decided to watch the debates from home and just be ready to teleport in if the Squad showed up on TV.

 

The disruption started with the Squad's mentalist Southern Belle using some invisible cumulative Mind Control to force the candidates to tell the complete honest truth, and then mentally slipped some questions into the moderator's mind...

 

Moderator:  Like all people, we know that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have secrets they'd rather not share.  And as their running mates, you each may have been made privy to some of these secrets.  Could each of you please share what you know with the American public about...

Malarky:  You know, I'm not sure we should get involved here.

Pops:  I'm not even sure these folks are doing anything wrong.

 

(Don't worry, I'll avoid anything political here, as it's really not germaine to the quotes.)

 

After the VP candidates have cleared their consciences of what they know of their running mates' secrets, members of the Secession Squad step onto the stage.  Stars & Bars and Bonnie Blue take the VP candidates' places behind the podiums and begin telling the American public about the corrupt federal government, and how the people deserve better than that, etc.  I move the counters for the VP candidates aside as those two Squad members take the podiums, and other Squad members (Rebel Yell, Johnny Reb, Steel Magnolia, and Manassas) take up positions around the stage.

 

Malarky:  Um, shouldn't the Secret Service be doing something about now?

GM:  Oh, yeah.  Two people in suits and shades come out and stand beside Pence and Kaine.

Shadowboxer:  They don't seem worried about the various supervillains around them?

GM:  Nope.

Circe:  Yeah, pretty sure the Secret Service detail has been compromised.

 

Malarky:  Wouldn't you expect them to be better able to handle supervillains?

GM:  Well, the Secret Service does have a handful of superpowered operatives, but most of them would be assigned to the President's detail, and maybe one to each of the two Presidential candidates.

Pops:  These are just the VP wannabes.  They don't rate so high.

GM:  Which is why the Secession Squad is hitting the vice-presidential debate, instead of the presidential debate the week before.

 

The heroes decide to teleport in and intervene, but opt to teleport up to the auditorium's control booth to get eyes on the full situation.  They find the Secret Service and FBI agents shot up but just unconscious (thanks to bulletproof vests), and the network technicians and lighting/sound guys all huddled in the corner, terrified. 

 

Maker:  Can I turn off the TV feed going out?

GM:  You can try. 

(she makes a Systems Operation roll, but finds the video and audio still going out, thanks to Steel Magnolia's cyberkinetic powers)

Maker:  Well, how can I shut this down?  Maybe my EMP?

Honey Badger:  That's a whole lot of very expensive equipment.  I don't think the networks are going to take kindly to that.  Let alone all those audience members whose smartphones get trashed.

 

Southern Belle finally shows her hand, attempting (without success) to Mind Control Honey Badger to surrender.  Malarky responds with a magical shillelagh.

GM:  How much Mental Defense do you have, and what's your EGO.

Malarky:  Um... 12 points Mental Defense, and 15 EGO.

GM:  Okay, as you look at her, you feel this strong urge to not hurt her.  Her DCV is 15...

Malarky:  WHAT?!?!

GM:  ...minus 2 for your mental defense, and an additional 1 for your EGO, for a final value of 12.

Shadowboxer:  WTF?

GM:  She has +9 DCV that's -1 per 5 points of an attacker's Mental Defense, and -1 per 5 points of EGO above 10.

 

Malarky uses some Luck points to hit her, and rolls really high for his 13d6 AP Blast.

GM:  Ouch!  So she takes... 7 BODY past defenses.  She's unconscious and bleeding to death.

Malarky:  Bleeding to death?!

GM:  She kinda relies a lot on not getting hit in the first place.

 

The other heroes are making lots of suggestions to Pops on teleporting people out of the auditorium.
Nexus:  You need to get the VP candidates out.

Circe:  And the moderator.

Maker:  And my mom is in the audience.  Could you get her to safety as well?

Pops:  Geez, I'm trying here!  Yeah, I'll take care of all that, right after I buy my speed up to 12!

 

A bit later in the fight

 

Maker:  Pops, what about my mom?  Can you teleport her out of there too?
Shadowboxer:  That's not going to raise any eyebrows.  "We teleported the VP candidates to safety, and the moderator.  And then for some reason, this one random audience member..."

 

(more to follow)

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Couple of amusements from our Second Saturday Sci-Fi:

 

 

Before the game, as Jim and Leeta pull into the yard (yard is full of cars; we took some hurricane refugees over the weekend):

 

Leeta: Oh, Duke. I'm so sorry... We didn't know....

 

Me: It's okay; I got caught up and forgot to call everyone--

 

Leeta: I am _so_ sorry for your loss.....

 

(she thought it was a funeral! :D)

 

Me: Lee; it's cool. Nobody died. I've got a houseful of relatives from the coast dodging the storm. We might bot be gaming tonight, though.

 

Jim: In that case, I am also sorry for your loss.

 

 

------

 

 

We did game, just not an all-nighter, and mostly in the yard. At one point, Wrecker and Mary Crowbar switch to "Franglic" so as to not be understood by the obvious plant at the lodge restaurant. In the past, we've had a couple of players actually speak French, which made some of the role-playing rather enjoyable. Leeta (Mary Crowbar) starts yammering in French, mostly suggestions about their immediate goal and the possibility of putting false intel in the ears of the plant. Jim (Wrecker) listens studiously, adding agreement ("Ah; oui! Oui! Mais _oui, mon petite cher!") or flat out dismissal ("Non; cest ne pas possible" or "Il doit y avoir une meilleure facon", etc).

 

Finally, after a solid ten minutes of planning (and I really couldn't keep up; my French is iffy on a good day), she stares intently at Jim (Jim is Leeta's husband) and irritably fires off, completely out of character: avez-vous une idee de ce que je veux dire?

 

Jim looks shocked and slightly insulted, takes a moment to compose himself and finally replies:" Ce sera la derniere fois que vous allez me appeler crayon bleu!"

 

Then stands up, announces "and that's it; I'm tapped." and bows.

 

ten minute laugh break while three of us explained it to four of us. None was more shocked than Leeta, though: You told me you spoke French!"

 

Jim: No! I told you I _understood_ French. I recognize it when I hear it.

 

Leeta: A moi vous avez menti pour dix ans! Dix ans!

 

Jim: See? That right there? That's French!

 

 

Another ten minute laugh break.

 

:D

 

 

Duke

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Star Wars : The F- Troop
Returning to Fomos, where a large number of Imperial Stormtroopers are now marching around, and various smoking piles indicate what happens when Stormtroopers can shoot straight. Apparently somebody knifed a trooper on shore leave, and the Imperials reacted with weapons 'set to stun'. There were 'weapon malfunctions'. All shore leave is cancelled, which ruins our chance to sell them cheap beer.

Fakybe: Godsdammit. This is why we can't have nice things.

Forvuk also what to know if anybody dropped a heavy weapon.

Fakybe: I'm not sure I like where this is going.

GM: Any mission where you need to carry a heavy gun on a harness is probably a combat mission anyway.
Fakybe: Or a shopping trip on Smuggler's Moon.

He also wants to know if the heavy weapons he has can fire up through a floor.

GM: If they could, somebody would have already done it, and the cantina wouldn't have a mezzanine level.
Fakybe's player: That is one of the best 'GM shutting down player's idea' I've ever seen.

GM: You can see bodies being carted off by janitorial droids, to the-
Forvuk: Glue factory?

Half the people we know are missing, and the cantina is closed for repairs - the Imperials are paying, for some reason.

GM: 'We killed half the town, but we're rebuilding the cantina as a good-will gesture.'

Forvuk is so eager to get a E-Web that he approaches the Weequay he shot up in our counter ambush a few days ago.

Weequay: *through gritted teeth* ... isn't a heavy repeater enough for you?

At lest that smuggler-pirate that wants to kill us is holding off whilst the Imperials are here. One of the traumatized locals Fakybe is negotiating with is the owner of the cantina - one Rick.

Fakybe: Rick's Cafe Alderaan.

Rick: The other problem is that they shot the saxophonist.

Lots of people want off-planet too, including that pirate star fighter, who has posted bail and is offering a starfighter he doesn't actually own any more in payment. BOSS has too much to worry about to actually care. Of course, this will piss off the smuggler-pirates even worse, but hey, our negotiations with the Imperials are going to piss off the survivors, and any rebels that happen to be around too.

Forvuk: Has the Dejarik table been fixed?
Fendri: I think so. Can it be modified to play Sabacc?
Fakybe: Just as long as it can pick up the Life Day broadcast.

Off to the Star Destroyer Eviscerator.

GM: A huge orca looms over the globe of Fomos...
Forvuk: What's an orca?
Fendri: Big marine predator.
Fakybe: Well, just as long as it doesn't have the predilections of other delphinoids. But then, Fomos IS pretty fucked, so maybe it does.

The star destroyer's supply officer Commander Arcanite is obviously unhappy to have aliens on board his ship. Servitor bots are already scrubbing the deckplates. He also unhappy that he's been assigned to a cadet trip.

Cmdr. Arcanite: Welcome to the Eviscerator.
Fakybe: And you're welcome to it.
Cmdr. Arcanite: What are you and your crew of miscreants doing here?
Fakybe: I resemble that remark! Oh, my apologies, my grasp of your language is imperfect.

GM: Are any of you carrying weapons, or wearing incriminating t-shirts? 'Down with the Imperium'.
Fakybe: 'Free Princess Leia'

It soon becomes obvious to Fakybe and the Mon Calamari entrepreneur that the supply officer is trying to make some illicit purchases that he can blame on aliens if he's caught, but also that the star destroyer is so short on supplies that Arcanite is scrabbling to make up the shortfall. Something has seriously disrupted Imperial supply lines. Might have something to do with the Peace Moon being blown up. Fakybe suggests the troops would appreciate something to improve morale.

Cmdr. Arcanite: I'm surprised an alien understands the importance of morale.
Fakybe: Given the situation on Fomos is what happens when stormtroopers AREN'T relaxed...
Cmdr. Arcanite: ... good point.

Fakybe adds 'old war flicks' to the shopping list.

We check the ship for bugs as we leave - there's a few, but no more than you'd expect. Forvuk now wants to know how much it would cost to fill our ship with high explosive and fly it into the star destroyer.

Fendri: We are not going to blow up my ship!

Fendri's scruples don't stop him passing the info about an under-supplied and oddly crewed Imperial ship into the Bothan spy network, though.

GM: The Hutts have their own space, because not even the Empire wants to deal with giant slugs.
Fakybe: ... not enough salt in the galaxy.

GM: You fly off, and waste precious water on showers.
Fakybe: Don't worry, we'll wring the towels off into a bottle and sell it on Fomos later.

Fakybe: I'm sure there's icy moons in the outer system, or comets we can carve up.
GM: Sure, but they learned the hard way why you don't mix methane with your ice.

Off to the smuggler's moon!

Fakybe: Given the shortage of food and water on Fomos, what we should track down are some robot exotic dancers.
All: ....

GM: There's all kinds of performers available. Gungan Comedians, for example.
Fakybe: ... somehow I don't think political comedy from Naboo is very popular right now.

GM: There's flashdancer droids that choreograph their own lights.
Fakybe: Might be a bit high-brow - remember our audience.
GM: Well they like classic Jizz.
Fakybe: No they don't - Rick likes Classic Jizz. The customers don't have anywhere else to go.

Fakybe negotiates with an Arcona musician's wife-slash-agent, and persuades them that the move is worth it. For one thing it'll help him get off his salt addiction.

Fakybe: And they don't have a pirate problem anymore. I hear the captain got shipped off to be an exotic dancer for one of the Hutts.

We also hit the rumour mill for any robot performers that need off planet in a hurry.

GM: They contact you.
Fakybe: They MUST be desperate.

It's a troop of Trade Federation droids that do military marches and re-enact famous battles. This could work out, as well as be amusing - for one thing they could double as bouncers at Rick's Cantina, and they fold up to the size of a suitcase.

Forvuk: Could a hold-full of these guys take over a star destroyer?
Fakybe: You're obsessed - obsessed!

Fakybe: Well, let's give Roger Roger and Hammerstein here a chance.

GM: The Arcona's agent thinks Fomos is a good idea - no water, no salt. She wants him to dry out.
Fakybe: Literally.

The films might be a problem - they come with a Hutt film aficionado who controls the display rights, and insists on displaying them himself. Weird and slightly suspicious. Forvuk gets so engaged in setting up the Trade Federation warbots that he forgets an important piece of personal history.

GM: People usually hire mercenaries when they need some defenceless locals eliminated.
Fakybe: Just ask the colonists on Dralkh.
Forvuk: ... I need to go check something.

He finds that the merc guilds don't want to talk about the Dralkh contract. Or Contracts. Suspicious. We return to Fomos - to discover that the Eviscerator has left. But there are a large number of landed ships, and an Imperial shuttle. Everything seems perfectly normal. HIGHLY suspicious. But the staff at the starport haven't been replaced by murderous smugglers. Fnord's brother, the customs inspector, warns us that a lot of people want to 'talk' to us, so we'd better stay at the starport and keep all our hatches locked. But they won't torch the ship in berth, since everybody knows we're carrying booze and entertainers.

Duros Bro: There's already a tanker on the way.
Fakybe: You know, I think we're going to regret not hiring those exotic dancers.

The Arcona musician's wife is highly pissed, now that she's actually seen the conditions on Fomos, and learned about the murder threat hovering over us.

Fakybe: Look at it this way - the fact that they haven't blown us up in berth means they want beer and entertainers more than they want us. Congratulations! You have a captive audience out there.
Arcona musician: He's got a point, Merryl.

And there are even more probe droids buzzing around. This is the most suspicious thing yet.

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Kibbutzing before the game, and another example of the kind of conversational thread this group follows - why oreos taste so horrible, Sesame Street songs about sugar beets, and the problems of translating surnames into English. And the T-28 Superheavy tank, of which two prototypes were made, then scrapped largely because the battle they were designed for was already over, and they were too big to transport anyway. And then one turned up abandoned in a field 27 years later.

GM: I consider this proof that you can lose ANYTHING in the paperwork.
Me: Or the Nazis in an alternate Earth invented dimensional weaponry.
GM: The enemy tank has been disintegrated, mein Fuhrer! 'I'm pretty sure it's not disintegrated' 'Do YOU want to tell the Fuhrer that we're making the Americans in another universe stronger?'

Back to the game, where we're squirreled away an anthrax-ridden zombie cow, and are debated whether or not we actually want to go after the people responsible, or even inform the authorities.

Ys: You keep making me do things I don't want to.
Harshal: Look at it this way - you get to prove the superiority of murder over necromancy.

GM: If you ask the necromancer-morticians to cast Corpse Compass for you, they'll want to know about the undead cow. These are *socially responsible* necromancers.

GM: You could also use the Pathfinders.
Harshal: Good point - I hadn't even considered using professional adventurers. As opposed to whatever we are. Career Criminals, perhaps.
GM: Worse - they're professional veteran prodnoses.

Of course, we don 't have to go after the necromancer right now - we already have the cow, after all.

Gillert: Give him a few months to get complacent.

Instead we could use the chaos as an excuse to rob some houses.

Zin: I vote we make money.

Ys's player and the GM: *mocking my tendency to apologise about everything* Stop saying you're sorry. Sorry. Stop apologising For being sorry! Sorry. ARGH!

Sadly, Harshal's inquiries fail to find any likely targets that haven't already been robbed - with the exception of one attempted burglary that ended with half-a-dozen Gargoyles dead. That house had a curious Mark on the door. Zin nips across to copy the design, which seems to be an Elf design referencing the four elements - some kind of Guild badge from out of town.

GM: They're like the Pinkertons. If the workers are striking 'We'll take care of it'.

Ys: We spent too much time on that fucking cow.
Harshal: Look on the bright side - you can invite all the thieves guild members around for a barbeque.

Most of the remaining premises are under the protection of the Guard, the Mob, private security guilds, and so on.

Ys: We're going to piss off SOMEBODY doing this - we just have to pick who we annoy.
Gillert: I'd rather not piss off the martially inclined wizards. Or the mafia.
Ys: And we've already pissed off the Thieve's Guild. And we have to pawn the goods afterwards.
GM: At least they haven't figured out it was you. Yet.

It looks like we'll be annoying the Varisian Mob, the Sczarni, who are notorious for the shark tank they use on annoyances. We could try and implicate somebody else for the robbery of a Mob mansion.

Harshal: Did we keep any of those Nightscale weapons?
Ys: Are we about to provoke a turf war in the middle of a plague?

Object d'art are a good choice, especially since their new eventual owners can deny any knowledge of the source.

GM: 'Stolen? I had no idea'
Harshal: 'If the previous owner can't take simple precautions against theft...'

The most intriguing target is a curious house with an even more curious tower at the rear, with very thick walls, and no windows in the upper story.

Zin: My little kobold mind is already thinking about flying machines.
Harshal: What you really need is a cloak full of trained bats. I've heard African Swallows are fairly muscular too.

GM: Does anybody have Knowledge: Engineering?
Zin: *waves arms frantically*
GM: You look like Kermit the Frog.

Harshal: I suppose we could do parkour with the kobold if we throw him hard enough.
GM: Kobold hammerthrow.
Ys: Zin is an engineer, he can build a catapult.
Zin: I'm OK with this.

Instead we park a cart against the wall behind the building, and climb up each other. Much less suspicious than leaving a ladder propped against the wall while we're inside. We discuss devious traps on the way in, such as the wizard's tower rigged with a delayed action fireballs, teleport glyphs, and huge heaps of sawdust in the sub-basement. The Green Slime in the basement would just be icing on the cake. The actual building we're burgularizing is, of course, trapped out the wazoo, and the glass windows aren't glass. The locks on the building itself are also beyond our resident trapsmith, Zin, but aren't up to Ys with a crowbar.

GM: At least there isn't a permanent Unseen Servant waiting to disable the trap on the inside.

Thank goodness for GMs that aren't that sadistic. It's looking increasingly likely that this place was once owned by a mage, at the windowless tower is a summoning chamber. The library door is ridiculously robust too - it has five different locks, interwoven into a puzzle.

GM: Summoning Chambers are usually underground - but that's for wizards who don't live in a city where there's a whole city of hurt for anybody making unlicensed excavations.

We do find a scrollcase hidden behind a loose stone block in one room. We open it cautiously.

GM: 'Guess who prepared Explosive Runes To- ' just kidding.
Gillert: I can't read this, it's in elven. Here Ys, you read it.

Actually it's a birth certificate, but the name means nothing to us at the moment. The guest room is full of wealth - but none of it portable. Even the fireplace has adamantium bars to stop a thief from using the chimneys to get from room to room. We do find some highly sought-after bath oils though.

Zin: Oil of Slipperiness? I wonder what they used that for *looks innocent*

The silk sheets on the solid stone four-poster bed in the master bedroom are rather valuable too. Ditto the goosefeather pillows. Zin, who has been scuttling around on all fours looking for traps, finds a magically triggered effect that melts and reforms part of the stone bed and reveals the shelf where they stored all the missing paintings. Yoink! The next door is certainly trapped - fortunately, Zin is short enough that the barbed spike that fires out of the lock passes over his head, instead of into his eye socket. The office on the other side seems innocuous enough, but the ink set in the locked desk might be valuable.

Harshal: I'm sure a forensic accountant would find the ledgers fascinating, however.

The dining room furniture is Darkwood - very valuable, but too heavy to move. Gillert checks the fireplace for the traditional emergency stash of coin, and finds some.

GM: People keep doing it! It's as stupid as keeping a spare key under the obviously fake rock in your garden.

Zin does find some valuable wines in the storage rooms.

Harshal: So much glass to break.
GM: That's why they didn't take it with them. Plus, wine needs time to settle.

There are also some politically unfavourable paintings - one of the last King of Chelliax, for example, before the civil war. Odd, given the way Magnimar was founded by people that dislike Chelliax they left it. We bugger off with our loot.

An interesting headline :

Me: Perth Man Living In Bali Dies During Massage.... 'Massage'?
GM: An Unhappy Ending?

On Magnimar demographics.

GM: Elves outnumber dwarfs. By precisely four.
Harshal: Obviously a major elven city.
GM: ... and one 'other'.
Gillert: 'I refuse to be categorised.'
GM: 'What do we put him down as?'
Gillert: 'Twat.'

Harshal has unexpectedly high skill at appraising stolen goods.

Ys: He also to appraise the vict- I mean, clients - to know how much to soak them for.

GM: There's also a mithril letter opener - or a mithril longsword for a pixie, if you prefer.

GM: The rest of the silver writing kit includes vials of interesting powders and pigments.
Harshal: Oh reaaaallllly.
GM: And sliding drawers full of sheets of paper. All different sizes and grades.
Gillert: It's a forger's kit.
Harshal: I think I'll have to make some enquires into this guy's business dealings.
Gillert: You do that - I'm not getting involved.

Other loot - a case of expensive wine.

Gillert: It's 100-grade plonk. Why's it called plonk, anyway?
Harshal: From the sound when you hit someone in a head with a bottle.

Ys helped herself to one of the bottles as we left - which is annoying, since a full case would have been worth 50% more.

Harshal: Does she still have the bottle?

The fact that a highly-placed family in Magnimar had a portrait of the last king of Chelliax is odd, given how unpopular Chelliax is in Magnimar.

Harshal: It's not like we can use this information to blackmail them - since we stole the evidence.

On useful Rogue talents, such as Aura of Innocence combined with Convincing Lie.

Harshal: 'Where were you last night when the Archon was brutally stabbed to death?' 'I was home all night reading poetry' 'Then why are you covered in blood?' ' It was very intense poetry'.

Gillert: Would Convincing Lie work with written lies?
GM: ... Holy fuck. You could be the ultimate muckraking journalist.
Gillert: And we happen to know a printer.
GM: arrgghhh, you FUCKERS.

GM: One of the paintings is in the Tian style, of sinuous, almost serpentine creatures smoking from a hookah.
Harshal: Reptilian? Hookers? Hey Zin, I think they're talking about you.
GM: Meow.

Another is The Old Sage, by Crol Sembill - and THIS portrait is famous enough that Harshal recognizes it.

Gillert: Well, we're not selling THIS one around here.

And one of them is a painting of a disemboweled creature none of us recognise.

Gillert: Charming.
Zin: Creeeeeepy.
Harshal: I get the impression this was one of those noble houses that used to have a painting on every square inch of bare wall. But the current resident put all the paintings into storage - and replaced them with bookshelves.
Zin: What's the title? 'And I Thought They Smelled Bad On The Outside'?

GM: One more painting to go.
Zin: 'Gnolls Playing Poker?' 'Falllen Madonna with the Big Boobies'?

Harshal recognizes the last painting - and starts to sweat. It's an underwater painting of a blue whale - and it's famous because it went missing years ago. It's unusual because the artist was the Shoanti Sanna of the Gentle Waves.

GM: You've stolen a lost masterpiece - did you really think I wouldn't throw a wrench in here somewhere?

Harshal: I'm surprised the painting has survived. Must have some minor preservative magic on it.
GM: No it doesn't - all it needs is a minor cantrip every few years. Mending. Mending. Mending. I keep telling people - this is how scrolls and books last centuries in D&D. Look up the spell!

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Just a few from last Sunday's game:

 

The heroes are preparing for the startup of a fusion reactor which Maker had helped rebuild after it was trashed by V'Hanian D-Troopers a few months ago:

 

Maker:  So, is there anything on it I need to twerk?

Honey Badger:  Twerk?!

Maker:  TWEAK!  I meant TWEAK!

 

The heroes learn that the A-Team has been hired to trash the reactor, and even which day the attack will occur, so they stake out the research labs.

 

Nexus:  So, the Empress of a Billion Dimensions hired the A-Team to destroy the reactor... and they're agreed to do it?  Why?

Honey Badger:  Because they're being paid to do it.  That's what the A-Team does.

Nexus:  But she wants to take over our world!  Don't they realize they're helping her?  Why would they do that?

Circe:  (speaking slowly and distinctly) Because, Villain!

 

Maker:  I'm going to be in the reactor room, working on it.  But invisible.

Circe:  So everybody else just sees tools floating around in mid-air.

GM:  Working on it... does that mean you're twerking it?

Maker:  Yeah!  (player stands up and begins twerking)

 

The villains arrive!  The large stone golem Auger tunnels up from underground, so Honey Badger runs over.

Honey Badger:  I pound him, straight down.  (hits, rolls knockdown)  I yell down the hole, "See, that's why you should fill in your tunnel behind you!"

GM:  Okay, Auger disappears from sight, and you hear a bunch of swearing coming from down in the tunnel.  It's Augur's teammates.  Which is why he wasn't filling in the tunnel behind him.

 

Armadillo tunnels up in another spot and other villains quickly come out of the tunnel.  Using radar, Ankylosaur spots Maker and grabs her with his tail.  Meanwhile, several heroes team up on Armadillo, rendering him unconscious, before turning on other villains.

 

Honey Badger:  I'll grab this handy-dandy little club (points at Armadillo) and beat Ankylosaur with it!  That way they both take damage, right?

 

Nexus now targets Abyss, the teleporting alien mentalist. 

 

Nexus:  I think I'll hit him with my OCV drain.

Circe:  No, he's a mentalist, so he uses OMCV.  You're better off doing regular damage instead.

Nexus:  Okay, an electric blast then. (hits, rolls damage)

Abyss:  I say!  That was rather unpleasant!

 

After that, Abyss begins holding his actions, until Malarky turns toward him.

Malarky:  I think it's time to give the lad a toss of the shillelagh!  (rolls to hit with his ranged Blast)

GM:  Okay, Abyss has been holding, so he takes this opportunity to use Reflection.  (rolls and succeeds)  And he's redirecting it at... Maker, who is grabbed and an easy target.  (rolls to hit, succeeds and turns to Malarky's player)  What is that, 13d6 armor piercing?  Please roll the damage.

 

GM:  The worst part is, if Nexus had hit him with the OCV drain, his Reflection roll would have failed.

 

Malarky's redirected attack renders Maker slightly unconscious.  And Ankylosaur begins pounding Honey Badger with his own handy-dandy club... Maker. 

 

Honey Badger:  What?!

GM:  Hey, you gave him the idea.  (rolls to hit, then damage)  That goes to both of you.

Maker:  I take... 18 STUN after defenses. 

Malarky:  Since you're already unconscious, don't forget to double that.

Maker:  &^%#@^%$#!  I'm never waking up!

 

It was getting late in the Real World, and it's apparent the fight isn't even close to done.  Two villains KO'd.  One hero KO'd and another (the team's heavy hitter and damage sponge) down to 1 STUN.  So the villains want to cut a deal.

 

Ankylosaur:  Airstrike damaged the reactor, so technically we've fulfilled our contract.  Rather than draw this out, with you quite possibly losing, what say I give you this (waves Maker's unconscious body), and you let us leave?

Honey Badger:  What, just let you go?

Ankylosaur:  We could keep fighting...  maybe completely trash the reactor.  That's probably what our client would want...

Honey Badger:  Nah.  Never mind.  You can go.

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A fun exchange from teh bunneh's Lucha Libra game over the weekend.

 

"Don't you find this a little suspicious?

"How so?"

"Every monster we've ever faced all showing up out of nowhere, and then vanishing all at once right when these aliens show up?"

"[scoff] That just means it's Tuesday."

"Yes, but today is Wednesday."

"...My god you're right! Something strange and suspicious is going on! We should investigate!"

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Pathfinder - Scum and Villainy (Fantasy Flavour)
Pathfinder, in the freeport of Magnimar, where persons unknown have used an undead cow to spread Anthrax through the populace. We found the cow, but have mostly used the chaos as cover for burglarizing.

Dramatis personae -

Tannis Oberech: Bastard son of a noble, but mostly just a bastard.
Harshal High-seeker Stasny: Corrupt barrister.
Ys: Freelance elf assassin
Zin: Kobold trapsmith and master of disguise.
Gillert: A poet who fell into the company of people mad, bad, and dangerous to know.

GM: The Pathfinder's Society think they've found a cure for the plague.
Tannis Oberech: Let's steal it.
Harshal: Quite. We can't have them profiteering from the misery in Magnimar. So let's steal it and sell it ourselves.
Tannis: Or we can use it to discredit the Society.
GM: Tricky.
Tannis: How about if the cure actually makes people sicker?
GM: ... and you have a source of the spores.
Day Z the Undead Cow in her crate: MMrRRRRUUMMMMMMM.

We want to invest in property - one option is the large boat that ran aground east of the Irespan, destroying every wharf in the bay and still a menace to navigation. The other option is one of the empty warehouses that used to supply those docks. Now we just needed to get the best possible price of aforementioned property.

GM: Ys has Diplomacy and Harshal has Intimidate.
Harshal: Ys is an assassin - you don't want them to be scary, you want them to seem harmless right up until they stab your enemy in the spleen. Whereas I am a lawyer. 'Your Honour, he's intimidating the witness' 'Correct.'

Ys goes in to the bank that currently holds title to the empty warehouse, posing as a Riddleport investor, and offers 1000 gold. The next day Tannis goes in, posing as a tough, and offers 200 gold and menaces.

Loans and Defaults Guy: I really can't let this go for less than 15,000.
Zin: 15,000???
GM: Sorry, 1500. He was thinking in silver.

The banker is quite annoyed that the bank clerks gave Ys the runaround yesterday, even if she is apparently from the despised Riddleport.

L&D Guy: She might be from Riddleport, but their coin still clinks.

L&D Guy: Ms. Yon.
Ys: Yes, of Hither and Yon Trading Company

L&D Guy: Now, I am not the kind of person to assume the worst of people based only only their accent, but would you by any chance know any 'facilitators'?
Ys: I might know some people who ... do bad things.
L&D Guy: Because yesterday I had a visit from a character who made a ridiculous offer and made me feel threatened. And I don't like feeling threatened. He was not the kind of person who can function in polite society. So my superiors are willing to reduce the amount required for the warehouse, in return for his head.

We could produce a body magically altered to look like Tannis. Ys, as an assassin with poor impulse control, has an easier solution in mind.

Tannis: We have another job for you - we need a body.
Ys: Right now I need to pass a Will check.
GM: Because right now you're worth 350 gold to her, dead.
Ys: You're valuable, now.
Tannis: Oh shit.

Ys: I've decided not to kill you.
Tannis: ... this is appreciated.

Harshal: Can we find out where the banker lives and let him wake up with the head on the pillow next to him?

We end up getting both the warehouse, and the salvage rights for the grounded ship. We're not the first to have made the attempt, but everybody else had the Nightscales thieves' guild causing trouble. Then we hire all those kobolds as labour to build a breakwater around the wreck, and shore it up, and Harshal writes a fluff piece for Parvo Crispin's newspaper about the value of kobolds in public works. With his talent for convincing lies, this catches on, and the party gets invited to a civic event in their honour. After all, we did secure a navigational threat, and intend to rebuild those wrecked docks.

GM: And Sala No-name has moved to a park closer to Ilia.
Gillert: The authorities must be glad.
GM: Sort of. Down here most people are all 'Cool! Can I pet the doggy?'
Gillert: 'Yes. Once.'
GM: 'Why?'
Gillert: 'Because you'll only have one hand afterwards'
GM: Technically you can pet the doggy twice.

Tannis' eccentric cousin Emelliandra has been joining ribcages into a long serpentine construct. Pity we didn't know about this when we needed to get rid of that headless body.

Emelliandra: I need a body.
Tannis: ... why?
Emelliandra: I'm making a Necrophidius.
Harshal: Of course you are.

Surreptitiously trying to sell off those paintings generates an interesting response. A Black Knight turns at Tannis' apartment, wanting to purchase the paintings that Tannis DIDN'T advertise.

Black Knight: We have no interest in how you came into possession of them. Indeed, we applaud your initiative - but we want those paintings. We are willing to reward you for them, rather than take them, which is why I come unarmed.

The Black Knight correctly identifies one of the paintings as the Obsidian Courthouse, an extra-planar locale associated with Asmodeus, the demon prince of contracts. Uh-oh.

Tannis: I need to talk to my business associates, but I give you my word I won't sell it before I see you again. Is there somewhere I can can contact you? A name I can ask after?
Black Knight: I do have a name, but I will not be telling you it. Names have power, after all.

The room is getting uncannily cold, too. The Black Knight promises to return soon, which is not ominous at ALL. Nor is the strong lilac scent he's using to obscure what he really smells like.

Zin: What did they offer for the paintings?
Tannis: Two platinum.
Harshal: Is that all?
Tannis: Two platinum BARS.

We agree to the offer, on the additional condition we get a contact in case we acquire more interesting paintings.

Black Knight: It seems you are fishing for my name again, despite our generous offer. Very well - I will give you a name, of one we have influence over. Emelliandra Oberech. Good night.

The platinum bars are ten pounds each, and stamped with the mint mark of one of the more ominous kingdoms elsewhere on this continent. At least it isn't one of the even more disturbing kingdoms on the other continent.

Harshal: I wonder why they even have all those zombie plantation workers, if they're all dead anyway.
Ys: He doesn't NEED zombies, but the zombies had a better union.

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Star Wars - Scum and Villainy (Space Opera Flavour)

 

In which some scum and villains attempt to make some filthy lucre at the edge of Imperial and Hutt Space. There's no way this can end badly.

Forvuk Zayk: Dressellian brute
Fendri: Bothan pilot of our Corellian freighter.
Fakybe: Chandra-fan con-artist and engineer.
Fnord: NPC engineer that works for the starport on Fomos.
R4W9: Our rescued Astromech

Forvuk: How big can stealth fields by made? Big enough to hide a Peace Moon?
Fakybe: Don't think so.
Forvuk: Maybe the Peace Moon wasn't blown up at all.
Fendri: I saw it explode.
Fakybe: You did?
Fendri: Well, I saw footage of it.
Fakybe: You saw footage of it. Think about what you just said - you saw footage, provided BY the Empire. Although for that matter, how DO we know the whole thing wasn't faked? The Imperials SAID the rebels blew up the Peace Moon - but that's not really that plausible, is it? An installation would have defenses, wouldn't it? How DID a couple of rebel X-wings managed to blow it up? Must have been an inside job. Controlled demolition!
Fendri: Proton torpedoes can't melt durasteel beams!
GM: And why would they build an installation as big as the Peace Moon anyway? It would be easier to convert a moon into something that can fire a super-thermal laser through hyperspace.

Things have been happening on Fomos - the Imperials have been confiscating every droid on the planetoid, and according to Rick of Rick's Cantina Alderaan, they're being stored in a warehouse, or a Lambda-class shuttle nearby. This 'training mission' by the Imperials is getting stranger and stranger. At least Forvuk's obsession about the massacre of his family on Drelkh is useful, since Fakybe goes to the trouble of inviting the Imperials to the audience-involvement screening of a classical bombastic war movie, with musical interludes by those Trade Federation marching droids, and improvised saxophone solos. This might seem like a non-sequitur, but it's all part of Fakybe's plan - as he takes complimentary drinks around to the officer's table, he gives them a polite warning about Forvuk's intentions to ask them about Drelkh, and gets told to warn him off.

Forvuk: You didn't ask them about Drelkh.
Fakybe: Not directly, but I DID prove myself helpful and polite, and a useful intermediary between the Imperials and any alien species they don't want to talk to or be seen talking too. Of course, it doesn't pay to be TOO subtle about it, or the GM doesn't notice what you're up to.

Then complications arise in the form of Captain Trex, a Trandoshan slaver and bountyhunter. He is highly pissed, since the Wookiee Lowrickk, that medical droid, and a pilot named Pash, stole his personal ship as they fled servitude to Trex's bosses in the Hutt dynasty. He wants a word with us, since he already knows Lowrickk and the droid paid us to take them to Fomos. It's abundantly clear that we don't get to decline the invitation for a chat. Happily, Fakybe can tell them the exact truth - we haven't seen the Wookiee and the droid or their contact since the thing with the pirates, we've never even met Pash, and the Imperials have gathered up all the droids on Fomos anyway.

Fakybe: But there's still some smugglers on Fomos that were involved with the pirates - why don't you ask them?

In a best-case scenario the bountyhunter's gang and the surviving smuggler-pirates will have a shoot-out with each other - but we probably won't be that lucky. We do know where Dario Blunt and the other surviving pirates hang out too - perhaps some careful sniping will ensure a shoot-up?

GM: Remember what the Imperials told everybody - massive reprisals if any Imperials get hurt. Do you REALLY want to start a shoot-out downtown?
Forvuk: Yes.

How to find out what's up with the missing droids? Can we lure the Imperial guards away from the warehouse, to get a look inside? One method springs to mind.

GM: On Fomos, water is more valuable than life, but not as valuable as beer.

The petty officer is okay with us doing 'maintenance' on the building, as long as we don't go inside. The Probe Droid inside is on a shoot-to-kill protocol.

Fendri: I'll just push Forvuk's heavy blaster back to the bottom of the tool bag.
Fakybe: It's not a blaster - it's a long-distance welder.

Under the watchful supervision of the bored guards, Fakybe climbs into the warehouse conduits to fix all the dodgy cabling that the Imperials added more complexity to. Oh, and plant his commlink where it can film the inside of the warehouse. Fendri receives a brief shot of droids *repairing* other droids, right before the Probe Droid takes out the camera with a heavy blaster.

Fakybe: Feed me more slack on the B2 cabl- BANG - Fuck! Fuckity Fuck!
Fendri: What's wrong?
Fakybe: That Probe Droid just shot at me!
Petty Officer: Then you'd better get out of there, son.
Fakybe: Believe me, I am!

The Imperials shrug it off, blissfully unaware that we actually were up to no good. Fakybe went into the ducting under his own recognizance after all. They also decide that the commlink getting destroyed is better than it being shot while Fakybe was still wearing it - that would have required more paperwork.

Fendri: I have a cunning plan. It could go horribly wrong, or horribly right, but this IS Star Wars.

Fendri and Forvuk want to recruit one of the Trade Federation droids, and use it to disable the probe droid with an ion blaster. After all, it's only programmed to stop LIVING targets from entering the building.

Fakybe: We still don't even know WHY they have all the droids. I'm not even sure why we're doing this.
Forvuk: For money.
Fakybe: They're droids, they don't have money.
Fendri: Hang about, I'm trying to come up with a suitably heroic reason - To give the droids their freedom!
Fakybe: Well, I suppose we could tell them to take of Trex's ship and fly off in it. That would be amusing. Any astromechs in the photo I managed to get?
GM: Oddly enough, no.

VX-49, the medical droid, isn't there either.

Fendri: Oh gods, I'm going to be joining the Rebellion.
Fakybe: How so?
Fendri: Because I'm rescuing droids just because it's the right thing to do.
Forvuk: There must be SOME way we can profit from this.

The others eventually decide that staging a mass droid break-out, and letting them hijack the YT-series ship in dry dock nearby, and sending them off to take over that pirate base we attacked, is the way to go. We can say we saw that med-droid too, when our astromech goes rogue to pilot the YT.

Fakybe: I still don't understand why we're doing this.
GM: Neither do I, and I'm the GM.
Fakybe: OK, can somebody explain to me why we're doing this, and how we got to this plan? Because I don't recall any of us taking strong drugs lately. Although I can see one advantage to the plan - because if I can't see any reason why we're doing this, I'm sure the Imperials won't think to connect us to the crime either.

We head off to recruit the Trade Federation marching troop and their agent, the rogue military protocol droid M-PSR-E0. If droids could have expressions, his face would be a picture.

Fendri: Can you help me out here?
Fakybe: Don't look at me, I still think someone slipped us strong hallucinogens.
Fendri: M-PRSR-E0, I know you believe in droid rights, just like I do -
Fakybe: *sotto voce* since when?

M-PSR-E0 doesn't want to risk his 10 primary droids, since they're all originals. Number 11 is a replica.

Fakybe: Is there a flowchart? Step One : Start Droid Insurrection. Step Two : ???? Step Three -
Fendri: Profit!

Fakybe: This is such a bad idea - we're implicated three different ways - we brought the Trade Federation droids here, we brought that med droid here, our astromech is going to be their pilot...
Fendri: You can say it...
Forvuk: 'I have a bad feeling about this'
GM: And you have any number of droids who can tell you the odds.
Fendri: Hooray, we're starting a droid insurrection!

GM: It IS odd that the Impresario thinks this can actually work - obviously he's working from information you don't have.

We get the Suitcase ( Trade Federation Droid 11 ) into the warehouse in a heavy lifter crate of tools and equipment. The heavy lifter droid has been tampered with so the inevitable investigation later suggests it was hacked, and not by us. 11 then has a good look around, under the oblivious sensors of the Probe Droid, and discovers that the captive droids are being run through an escape pod simulator. For some reason the Imperials want to find better ways to tell if droids are using escape pods, and survival protocols afterwards. Can't imagine why. Most people think droids aren't capable of much, but maybe that's changing after that whole incident with the Peace Moon. Fnord uses Binary to talk 11 through shutting down all the restraining bolts on the captive droids. Then it's just a matter of walking all the droids out the back door, when the Imperials are looking elsewhere.

Our Rodian friend sends us a photo - of an Aqualish pirate captain in carbonite, being unloaded from a ship here in Fomos. Fakybe sends them a thumbs-up emoji.

Fakybe: We'd better go check on this. It IS a bit odd - why would the Hutts send a freeze-dried Aqualish BACK to Fomos? And I'm sure the smugglers will try and rescue him the moment they find out. Plus we'll have plausible deniability while the droid insurrection kicks off "We weren't involved, we were busy being shot at by smugglers when it happened."

The freeze-dried pirate has been installed in place of the Wanted poster at Rick's place. Rumour has it that one the Hutts, Thakba, ordered this, as the first stage in a Hutt takeover of Fomos and to intimidate the surviving pirates. Mogul the Hutt, the film aficionado we brought to Fomos, has taken over the abandoned mansion opposite Rick's Place, and is using the roof as a sunbathing lounge. I guess we won't be using it as sniper position anymore.

Fakybe: You know, I think we might be at least partly responsible for a joint Imperial-Hutt takeover of Fomos. I feel slightly guilty about this.
Fendri: *shrugs* eh.

Thakba Besadii Diori is the Hutt Kingpin of Sleheyron that ordered the bounty of the pirates in the first place, and ordered the new interior decoration of Rick's. Mogul is from Nulhutta, which at least suggests they're not related.

Fakybe: We've given Mogul a foothold on Fomos. It's a good opportunity for him, and Hutts take opportunities. Mogul might have been a small fish on Smuggler's Moon, but here he can be a big fish. A big, brown, turd-shaped fish.

Hopefully a business meeting with Mogul will give us an alibi during the droid escape. And if the bountyhunter Trex assumes VX-49 was involved in the escape, he might chase off after them and forget about us.

Just recapping the plan, mostly because I still can't believe we're doing this - The Imperials have a warehouse of confiscated droids that they're training in survival skills for some inexplicable reason. For some other inexplicable reason, we're smuggled a replica Trade Federation droid into the warehouse, to disable all the restraining bolts, disable the Imperial probe droid on guard, and hurry them all across to the YT pirate Freighter we captured, where our astromech will fly them all off to the pirate base that only us and the handful of surviving pirates know the location of. They'll 'kidnap' Fnord, 'steal' the Electronic Counter-measures Pod that BOSS temporarily leant to us, and hook it up to the captured starfighter in another bay. The jamming will cover their escape, especially since the Imperial star destroyer is out of system at the moment.

Fakybe: Apparently this is what we do now.
GM: Yes, a strange plan that will cost you lots of money, and crew.
Fakybe: I still don't know why M-PSR-E0 is going along with this.
GM: He's a military protocol droid that likes seeing all these old droids marching around not getting shot at.

We'll be off making business deals with Mogul the Hutt when it goes down, by way of alibi.

GM: Scoundrels might wonder exactly why somebody would want to film on a planet with rugged scenery, rugged extras, and zero change of rain, snow, or fog interrupting filming.

GM: R4 is going to be so screwed after doing this. 'They won't just wipe me, they'll fry my circuits. But at least my fellow droids will be free. We'll start a Pirate Collective.'
Fakybe: Well, you're already an RRRR unit.
GM: Captain ARRR4W9

GM: Mogul has already renamed the mansion as The Voyeur's Hutt. His eyes roll back as he directs a horrified female slave to scratch under a belly fold.
Fakybe: Well, there's a mental image I won't get rid of in a hurry.

There's the sound of heavy weapons fire, and an almighty crash and roar as the YT Freighter takes off through the roof of the repair hanger.

Fakybe: What the Frak was that????
Mogul's Minion: Somebody just stole a Freighter from the starport.
Fakybe: Wait, what? A Freighter? Was it OUR freighter???? *punching numbers into a commlink* R4? Fnord?

Forvuk and Fendri run out to watch the Freighter disappear into the sky. It's not the Deniable Plausibility, which is a relief, since it means the droids didn't double-cross us. Still, since that Freighter was worth a share of the anti-pirate reward to us, we have to pretend to be upset.

Fendri: Hey! No! That was worth thousands of credits to us!

Forvuk: The ship's gone!
Fakybe: *'faints', apparently believing he means the Deniable Plausibility*
Mogul the Hutt: *laughing himself sick*

As we hurry to the starport, another unauthorized ship takes off - that starfighter we thought R4 was going to fit the ECM pod to.

Fendri: R4 took the starfighter too?
Fakybe: That was clever of him.... wait. He took the ECM pod. That was BOSS property.
GM: So was the starfighter.
Fakybe: *internal facepalm*
GM: Shall I roll up some new characters for you?

We eventually realize that R4 didn't even go near the starfighter - and we have no idea who took it.

Forvuk: Wait, somebody has scrambled our starfighter?
GM: YES!
Fendri: That wasn't part of the plan!

BOSS reports that the starport is in an uproar, they have no idea who took the starfighter, but the Imperial Frigate that just entered the system is looking into it.

Fendri: We get in our ship and GO.

So does everybody else with a ship too, including the Rodian bounty-hunters, Tie Fighters, etc.

GM: Inner system comms are in Chaos as everybody tries to track the skipjacked freighter, contact the starfighter, and figure out what the hell is going on, while the YT still jams everything.
Fakybe: Well, time to add to it. *broadcasting on all channels in his native tongue* DON'T YOU DARE SHOOT THAT SHIP THAT'S OUR MONEY IF YOU TORPEDO THAT SHIP I'LL TAKE IT OUT OF YOUR NURFHERDING HIDE.

GM: You can hail the Bantam Menace.
Fakybe: The Bantam Menace?
GM: You had to call the starfighter something.
Female Voice: Am in hot pursuit of the stolen ship - are you here to assist or hinder?
Fakybe: You stole our prize starfighter to follow them!
Forvuk: Pull up or we open fire!
Female Voice: That's a negative - this ship has been impressed into the Imperial Navy.
Forvuk: .... is the jamming still enough to stop anybody else from hearing this conversation?
GM: Probably.
Forvuk: Right then - I open fire.
Fakybe: Please tell me that was a warning shot.
Fendri: That's our ship you're shooting at, remember.
Forvuk: Can I fire a warning shot with both barrels?
Fendri and Fakybe: NO!

As it happens her efforts to dodge the warning shots are enough to wreck the frankly rubbish starfighter anyway. The unknown pilot has to bail out in a hurry. At least we can talk our way out of this if she actually IS Imperil Navy.

Fakybe: She never told us who she was.
GM: Yes she did!
Fakybe: No, she just *claimed* she was with the Imperial Navy. Our ship is called the Deniable Plausibility for a reason.

The robot-filled Freighter jumps out, the jamming goes away, and we broadcast to the converging other ships, Tie Fighters, etc.

Fakybe: We've stopped one of the skip jackets, apprehending her now!

GM: If she has a flightsuit, she can survive if she climbs out the cockpit and into an airlock. If.

GM: You can see her now - or her Imperial Flightsuit, anyway. Of course, now the jamming is down you can hear her own broadcasts. YOU GODSDAMMED ALIEN MORONS etc.

Forvuk: We can demand compensation from the Navy for damage to our ship.
Fakybe: Well, we can TRY, but I don't think we should try and push it.

I make a suggestion to the GM that may prove amusing in later episodes - since the Imperials aren't going to believe us, and they'll be very annoyed with the pilot for taking the starfighter without permission, they'll attach her to our ship's crew by way of punishment.

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Champions - Scum and Villainy (Four-colour Flavour)

 

Hero Shrew missed one session of the adventures of Edge City's newest superheroes, which was probably just as well, since they were up against Armadillo, and there's only so much property damage Hardlight can talk his way out of.

GM: There are things that Bruce Wayne finds out simply because he's *Bruce Wayne*.
Hardlight (ooc): I'm likely going to spend a few XP on some Smoozing skills.
GM: That would require you buying off your "Terminal Foot-in-mouth Disease" Disad.

GM: So, let's move past where we left off, cause a recap would cause the smut meter to explode...

The Team has been spending the last few weeks in their day jobs:

Flux: Go to work during the day, Fight crime as a solo vigilante at night..
Hardlight: Fighting evil by moonlight...
Flux: Don't you dare!

Hardlight: My usual stuff involves a... surprising amount of paperwork. I don't have a Lucius Fox to handle all my day-to-day drudgery.

Fireflash is bored out of her mind and flipping through her phone when she finds a live video feed. ECPD's CAESAR mech suits just got taken out by a guy in someone in proper power armour.

GM: It's a Classic Supervillain Rampage!

Dude is Liefeldian in the sheer amount of guns and blasters he's pulling out of his armour to shoot things indiscriminately.

Hardlight: This looks like a job for...
Flux: The Insurance underwriters who are having to assess all this damage!

Hardlight: Since I don't really want to handle the G-Forces you pull while hanging onto you, and I can't do the Banjo Kazooie thing, shall we take the car?
GM: And what car is this, might I ask?
Hardlight: The Nondescript one made of Tissue Paper that doesn't cost any points?
GM: Ah.

The ECPD are taking potshots at the villain with their sidearms, to little effect.

Fireflash: Well, we can stay here, or we can go and do something Really Really Stupid.
Flux: You run a diversion, I'm going to try and fix these Mechs!

The villain announces himself as the Armadillo, but we're so ignorant of superhuman affairs that it doesn't mean much. He's been waiting for the heroes, it seems!

Armadillo: About time you got here! *Blasts Fireflash with his palm blasters, tossing her halfway down the street*

Flux counters with a bolt of lightning, doing more collateral damage but not much else.

Hardlight: Well, if you call yourself the Armadillo, you won't mind This: Roll Up! *creates a bubble around him*
Armadillo: Roll up? ROLL UP? Armadillo Don't Rollup or Roll Down for nobody! So how about we play a game of Hide and Seek?

He proceeds to drill down into the street in a maneuver that would make Bugs Bunny envious.

Armadillo: Come and get me!
Hardlight: Nope. *force walls the hole*

Four-colour violence ensues, with energy blasts and property damage, but no bloodshed to upset the comics code.

Armadillo: Fine, time for you to taste my SHOULDER BLASTERS!! *click as the blasters fail*... OH COME ON!

GM: Okay, his navigation skills aren't actually really built for underground.. the only way he could really tell which way he cold go was by surfacing occasionally.
Hardlight: Quickly, Look for the Land Dolphin!

The team loses him in a storm drain, but have a feeling he's not gone for long. We regroup by the fallen mechs, where Flux starts repairs, while Hardlight and Fireflash stand guard.

Flux: Hummina Hummina... *Parts whirr and swirl around him, as the utterly wrecked mechs are rebuilt to factory spec within half a minute.*
ECPD Officers: ...Wow. Uhh.. You want a job?
Flux: I'm good for now. Mind helping us out? We're reasonably sure he's coming back.

A car flies into the air. The Armadillo is indeed back, raising premiums everywhere.

Hardlight: Ah, there he is.

Hardlight attempts to trick him with a hologram image of himself, which is just good enough to get him out into the open, at which point he gets hit with energy blasts, and the car he tossed into the air earlier. He dives underground again, and attempts to collapse a few buildings. Pity Hero Shrew isn't there yet, to burrow after him. At least Hardlight's scans work this time. Fireflash blows a bus-sized hole in the ground, revealing him entirely, and Hardlight blows similarly sized holes in the power armour.

Armadillo: Alright, that's it, This time you'll get to see what I can do with my SHOULDER BLASTERS!
Fireflash: Not before you face my Full power Blast!

One bunch of Solid blasts later, and he's out.

Armadillo: Eh, it's good.. My lawyer's already paid up.
Flux: Paid up..?

The ECPD CEASAR units are agitated.

ECPD Cop: Damnit! This was a Diversion!
Hardlight: What?!
ECPD Cop: Looks like the Six Teens are moving up in the world.. you'll see it on the news.

Hero Shrew: I've heard things about Armadillos, and them all being identical quads is the least of it.
Flux: And then you'd be all 'You're not an armadillo, you're just a human in a suit'
GM: And Hero Shrew missing the fight reduced the amount of property damage anyway.

The Armadillo had been hired by the Six Teens as a distraction, while they raided Tyrell Corp. The Armadillo did significant damage to one of the skyscrapers downtown, but things should be okay, since Centurion, the CEO-superhero of Century Corp, is ready to pop over from San Francisco in his S&R powered armour and demonstrate his Construction Foam supertech.

Hardlight: A CEO and a super? And it's a public ID? I'm taking notes....

Converging on the Tyrell corporation, we discover that the facility has been trashed, that Tyrell had unregistered security robots doing security inside the building, and that the human security were found paying pattycake when the authorities. At least the surviving robot is polite, if unhelpful.

GM: It's part of Tyrell's philosophy for Artificial Intelligence - very limited, strictly limited, AI.
Hero Shrew: Don't want another Mechanon.
GM: More to the point they don't want Mechanon going 'Oh cool, thanks for the toys, yoink.'

Hero Shrew: So Tyrell has unregistered security droids.
Fireflash: They don't have to. It's just down as part of the electronic security.
Hero Shrew: Would have been nice if they'd told the authorities they had androids.
GM: They don't.
Hero Shrew: ?
GM: They don't have androids. They have robots. They don't have androids or gynoids or anything that could be mistaken for anything other than a robot. It's a design philosophy - there's a reason why its torso looks like it belongs on a motorbike.

The GM is a little disappointed we didn't get to the factory before the Six Teens had finished their raid - because we would have found ourselves in a fight with dozens of the security bots, as well as the Six Teens, who were leaving fingerprints in the metal, using robots as blunt instruments, and turning the place into a metallic abattoir.

GM: This is the consequential damage of a super brawl.
Hero Shrew: The kind of thing I do.

The shrew has a sniff around.

GM: The corner of one of the rooms smells like one of the upstairs room at the Collar Club, when you have send for a cleaner.
Hero Shrew: .... they had time for a quickie mid-raid?.... OK, they are teens, but still.

Representatives from Tyrell Corp turn up, in a flying car.

GM: One of them is six-foot plus, and about as wide.
Fireflash: Bodyguard.
Hero Shrew: Given some of the CeOs around this part of California, you never know. He could be another super.
Hardlight: The Amazing No-Neck Man.

Fireflash: We're trying to determine if they took anything, or if they infiltrated your computer systems.
Tyrell rep: We know they did, or the robot wouldn't be there. It's part of our proprietary security system - if a Cyberpath interacts with our data systems, the robots attack.
Flux: ....
GM: Aren't you glad you didn't try to use your powers on the servers?
Flux: I'm not that stupid. Twice.

Flux: It looks like most of the damage was done in a superfight.
Tyrell Rep: Makes sense - the security robots can be... aggressive.
Hero Shrew: *punches air* Woooo!
Flux: How violent are these security robots? Some Cyberpaths are squishy.
Tyrell: If they're squishy they shouldn't be messing around in a robotics factory.
Hero Shrew: *nods earnestly*

The Tyrell developer eventually determines the Six Teens stole a copy of the entire construction and programming process for the robots. Scooter gets sent downstairs to find a forensics guy, so they can use the residue of the quickie to confirm some Ids.

Hero Shrew: You one of the CSI thingie guys? They need you upstairs. Hardlight said you'd need a blacklight.
Forensics: ... exactly what did they say to you.
Hero Shrew: Apparently they a quickie before the fight with the robots?
Forensics: OKAY, at least I know what kit to bring.
Hero Shrew: Flux said they did SOMETHING to the servers.
Fireflash: I enjoy sex as much as the next girl, but there's a time and a place...

Apparently it was Vipergirl and Black Warlock. They were bored. And didn't take kindly to being interrupted by the robots.

Hardlight: Huh - a red guy with blue balls
Hero Shrew: Guess we found his berserk button.

The security footage doesn't reveal Ghost Shadow, the Six Teen ninja, until he's leaving the building. In a full Naruto run.

Hardlight: And real ninjas everywhere are facepalming. 'He's making us look bad'.

Hardlight calls his secretary.

Hardlight: We didn't hire a team of superviillians to raid a rival, did we?
Secretary: Well, I'll check the black accounts but I don't think so, sir.

We track down a fixer, one Bai Dong Jiang, in Chinatown, who arranges illegal tech thefts and deals.

Hero Shrew: I think I know him.
GM: But there was something else you can't remember.
Hero Shrew: I think he has a robot hand with a grenade inside.
Flux: ... That might be someone else.
Fireflash: A robot head with a grenade inside???
Hero Shrew: Hand.
Fireflash: Ah, that makes more sense.

They don't want Flux coming in - they really don't like tech images and cyberpaths. And the building is shielding from electronic signals, too.

GM: You go from four bars to no bars.
Fireflash: That's OK, I can't drink anyway.

The fixer is quite a bit younger than the reputation connected to the name suggests.

GM: It's a Dread Pirate Roberts thing.

Fortunately, the fixer in question is quite annoyed with whoever hired the Six Teens, since they came into Edge City and didn't arrange the theft through him. He's happy to drop the buyers in the shit, albeit indirectly.

Fixer: They're probably up in North Haven, with the Droogs - you know, the ones who saw that movie too many times - the one with the bowler hats, walking sticks and longjohns.
Hero Shrew: What, the Avengers?

Staking out North Haven that night actually works - we spot Titania, and converge on her just as she's meeting up with others in North Edge Park - and as a black helicopter descending to meet them.

Hero Shrew: oh, fuck!
Fireflash: Hm?
Hero Shrew: Look at the big skull on the front of the helicopter, that's never a good sign.
Fireflash: I think this is the same one that kidnapped me.

Hardlight uses his powers to turn invisible - and is promptly targeted by a spotlight from the chopper.

GM: Targeting radar. Non-sight group.
Fireflash: Well, if they're all so focused on the invisible guy.... *FLARE BLAST*

Flux fries their sensors, and Hero Shrew lobs a garbage drum into the rotors. The Six Teens scramble to change into their Supervillain gear and guises. Lash actually manages to catch the falling chopper. Vipergirl spots Scooter, to try and kick him in the nuts. He actually feels that.

Hero Shrew: That was fucking rude, lady.

Hardlight is still invisible, his forcebubble around The Iron Claw is rather tougher than they expect, Flux is blinded by ninja dust and hiding somewhere, Fireflash has been shot out of the sky, and Hero Shrew is being kicked further up the street. Also, the Six Teens, the mercenary Killzone and her minions don't know we haven't contacted the authorities yet.

Titania: We have to get out of here.
Killzone: .... *glares at Fireflash* I'll collect that contract on you next time!

Most of the Six Teens are doing the best to take the murderball down, which keeps them busy. Ghost Shadow goes after Flux. Iron Claw glares around looking for the invisible Hardlight, who is actually just outside the bubble using it to keep himself from the rest of them, as he radios for help.

Iron Claw: I know you're out there somewhere, but there is one thing you should know... *slashes out with his claw, and tears the bubble open from inside* I actually know what I'm doing!

Hero Shrew grabs Vipergirl's ankle and elbow when she tries to leg sweep him, and briefly considers throwing her into the helicopter rotor.

Fireflash OOC: Do you have a code versus killing?
Hero Shrew OOC: Yeeeeah. Ah well. I BRIEFLY consider turning her into salami, then just try to twist her leg off instead.
Flux OOC: Dang morals, ruining everything again.
GM: And if you'd thrown her at the chopper you'd have taken distance and unbalanced weapon penalties. And she's really unbalanced - this is the Viperia fan girl we're talking about. But at least you get to hit Titania with her next turn.

Lash is, for some reason, ignoring the rest of the fight and is scurrying over the battlefield towards Ghost Shadow and Flux's battle. Apparently she was going to STOP the ninja killing our technomage. Since Flux actually manages to survive the attack and stun his attacker, it turns into a rescue. The Doom Troopers bug out.

GM: Get to the CHOPPPAAAAAAHHHH!!!!
Flux: I guess the sale is off then.

Flux stuns Iron Claw, and Hardlight legs it with him. Hero Shrew smacks Titania with Vipergirl, who gets knocked a few meters back, and actually says "thanks for the assist", and winks - because she ends up close enough to attack the rest of Scooter's team.

Vipergirl: Put me DOWN YOU LITTLE WORM! *eyeblasts Hero Shrew*
GM: Lasers from her eyes, Scooter. LASERS FROM HER EYES.
Flux: He EATS worms.
Hero Shrew: ......
Black Warlock: *using Mind Control on Hero Shrew* Yes. Put her down.

Lash has her boyfriend Ghost Shadow safe, but Flux has Iron Claw, and can take off straight for the horizon.

Vipergirl: Jesus, look at her go!
Black Warlock: *Mental Shout* LET HIM GO.
Iron Claw: *semi-conscious* ... wait... what?
Flux: .... Well, if you insist. *drops Iron Claw, who plows into the landscape at several hundred kilometers an hour*
Hero Shrew OoC: He's going to hit so hard a childless Kansas couple will find him.

Lash bugs out with Ghost Shadow and Titania, who is not pleased about this. After Iron Claw wakes up in custody, he laughs his head off, and mocks our erstwhile leader Hardlight as an idiot - because Iron Claw didn't have the data. Titania had it, and palmed it off to Killzone while we were busy going after Iron Claw.

Hero Shrew: We made an assumption that made an arse of you.
Hardlight: *waits in vain for the 'and me' bit* .... sigh.

The Iron Claw isn't considered a serious threat, as long as the Claw is only caged to his back, so he's not going to be transferred to super-facility until after his arraignment.

Hero Shrew: So... what are the statistics for super villains rescuing their team-mates mid-transport?

Our error - not realising that Titania probably had the data, since she was apparently going to the meet with Killzone alone.

Hero Shrew: Hindsight is always 2020 - just like the next US election.

Hardlight: I am an idiot and shouldn't be allowed to make the plans.
Hero Shrew: But if you don't we'll have to blame someone else.

Hardlight: We did the obvious thing.
Hero Shrew: Beat up the mooks while the Big Bad gets away to become a recurring villain.
Flux: We didn't even do that - Killzone's mercs were the mooks. Did we even go after them?
Hero Shrew: Sure - we trashed their transport and made them bug out.
GM: ???
Hero Shrew: OK, they actually bugged out because they had the data.
GM: Right. Not because you trashed their chopper.
Hero Shrew: Yeah yeah, we screwed up. It's Hardlight's fault.
Hardlight: Do we get the Keys To The City now?

The Iron Claw gets broken out of jail, because it turns out Ghost Shadow can teleport into places he can't see.

Hero Shrew: Well, his threat level just went way up.

Our screw-up now pretty much total, we distract ourselves by checking local news on Facebook, and other trivia.

Flux's player: I don't grow plants inside, that's just wrong.
Hero Shrew's player: Well, there's ONE species people tend to grow inside.

The Edge City police have released profiles of four of their newly matriculated officers. Three are Moreaus.

GM: Actually, they already had non-human officers.
Flux: Oh?
GM: Canine and equine units - attacking them has the same penalties as attacking a human cop.

One of the new officers is a cheetah.

GM: They're putting her on Traffic as a rookie, but they won't be given her a vehicle. She doesn't need one.
Hero Shrew: Saves on gasoline.
Flux: Aren't they supposed to work in pairs?
GM: Yes. He'll have a motorbike, and try to keep up.

GM: And they have an anthro Thylacine. And everybody wants to know how.

Hero Shrew: There's a lot of supervillains whose careers would have been a lot shorter, if they didn't have immunity to their own powers.
Flux: 'I am RADIOACTIVE MAN!' Dead in a week.

One of Fireflash's friends is complaining about her parents, who are separated.

Friend: And mum's been buying a lot of batteries.
Fireflash: EWw. TMI.
Friend: Yeah, and there's nothing in the house that takes that size of battery, right?
Fireflash: Yes there is.
Friend: Well, yes, but mine are rechargeable.

Anyway her Dad has said he's going to be away for several months training after she graduates. This seems a bit odd, especially he's supposed just a analyst that studies courier data. Fireflash promises to looks into it, and his employers Langaha Logistics.

GM: Langaha is a genus of Madagascan snakes.
Fireflash: Oh, fucking joy.
Hardlight: Hey, you don't know enough to react like that yet.
GM: There are PLENTY of companies with snake-related names that aren't fronts for VIPER.

GM: Leafnosed snakes aren't deadly, but they do sit and wait for their prey to come to them.

Apparently Langaha is acquiring a large number of investors to finance their stepping up to the next level in data analysis. And all their new recruits need to be good analysts AND physically fit and active, before they get sent for months of training and orientation at Greenhill Lodge and Spa, in Honor, Wisconsin.

Hardlight: Want to be an intern?
Fireflash: Not again!!!
Hardlight: Hey Scooter, YOU want to be an intern?
Hero Shrew: *scratches his balls* Yeah, I could pull it off.
Fireflash and GM: *exchange a glance, shake their heads*

Hardlight: Well, at least I can find out if my powers work outside city limits.
GM: There are probably better ways to test that.

Hero Shrew: Out in Cheese Country then. The spa is probably the only large employer in town.
GM: Honor has a population of 800.
Hero Shrew: There you go.
Flux: We're going to stick out like sore thumbs. Well, you are at least, Scooter.

The mayor of Honor is also in charge of the spa.

GM: Small town America again.

Which detours into a discussion of Dukes of Hazzard.

GM: The show that destroyed 57 Chevrolet Camaros for our entertainment *whimper*
Hero Shrew: Well, given YouTube channels like the Hydraulic Press Channel and Will It Blend?...

Flux does some sneaky internet snooping into Langaha and is promptly traced straight back to the disposable laptop Hardlight provided. That's a little alarming, especially since the data he found all seems to be perfectly innocent sales and advertising data that a legitimate analysis company would be studying. Eventually the GM cracks.

Hero Shrew: Oh, we thought it a plot hook.
Flux: You have dangled that sort of bait before.
GM: It's market data. It's marketing data analysis. it's a LODGE in WISCONSIN. How more boring could I make this?
Flux: It did scream Secret Organization.
Hero Shrew: We thought it was a VIPER training base.
GM: I was just Wiki-walking and found a cool snake!

Scooter also hears rumours that a feline half-jack - left side entirely cybernetic - has been seen around the Zoo again. He's been nicknamed the Half-cat, and he shows up every briefly every few years, asking about what supers are around. He seemed REALLY interested when told about Hero Shrew and the rest of Quadrant.

Hardlight: Has anybody been asking about the Greys?
GM: No.
Hardlight: My greatest personal failure!
Hero Shrew: ...
Flux: Really? You want to count THAT as your personal worst?

Hardlight's civilian company Lowelltech does fend off a rival infrastructure contract bid from Centurion's civilian company.

Hero Shrew: Good for you - you won your Tony Stark/Wayne Enterprises Dickwaving contest

Gangwatchers report that the Juicers have been recruiting, but they new recruits lack the usual heavy augmentation. And somebody has been killing members of the Voodoo Crew.

Hardlight: Good for them. It's not me, I have other things to do.

The individual has a skull for a head, under a hoodie. And the Voodoo Crew have already killed him at least twice. He's very, very fast with dual-wielded pistols.

Hardlight: Well, I can't do anything about that - I'm not allowed to talk to them.
GM: They think you're bad news. Not the same thing.
Hardlight: True
Flux: And you're letting it stop you?
Hero Shrew: You could always hang around down there - maybe they'll lose even more members.
Flux: 'What are you doing here? 'Eating popcorn'

GM: Kevin. Kevin! Wake up!
Hero Shrew's player: You can go to bed now.
Flux's player: We defeated VIPER.
Hero Shrew's player: Turns out there WAS a secret base under Wisconsin.
Hardlight's player: Under all of Wisconsin???
GM: I'll have to stat that out. A HUGE number of DNPCs. "I am the KING OF UNDERSCONSIN!"

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Last night I ran the first half of Foxbatty Fed (since one of my players said that she wanted to have Foxbat and crew put in another appearance). 

 

And apologies in advance to steriaca if I've misrepresented the mad scientist Professor Steriaca in game play.  Also apologies for stealing many of his jokes about the character.

 

The news included the arraignment of the Boston Commons, and included a note that Puritan chided the female members of the hero team for their "impure and unladylike attire."

 

Circe:  (showing picture of character) I don't know how I could have her *more* covered up than she already is.

Maker:  Hey, I wear a spacesuit!  What's wrong with that?
Honey Badger:  It's a very form-fitting spacesuit.

 

Shadowboxer finds something odd in his magical house:  Snow globes, sitting on tables when he enters a room.  Each looks like something you'd find in a chintzy gift shop, depicting a Boston skyline.
 

Shadowboxer:  I pick one up, shake it, then look outside.  Does it start snowing?

 

After dealing with various personal things, the heroes go their separate ways for Thanksgiving, with many going to stay with family out of town.  But given player paranoia, they're not terribly surprised when something odd happens late Wednesday night:  a car crash outside her apartment wakes her at 1:30 a.m.  The car ran into a wall that suddenly appeared in front of it.

Maker:  Someone built a wall in the middle of the night?  (shrugs)  Not my problem.  I'm going back to sleep.

GM:  They didn't build a wall.  It's not made of stone.  It's a glowing pink wall, pulsing every three seconds.  It goes as far to the left and right as you can see, and up as far as you can see.

Maker:  An energy wall?  Okay, this might need looking into.

 

She contacts her teammates.
 

Circe:  I can't deal with that.  I have Thanksgiving dinner to prepare for!

GM:  At 2 a.m.?

Honey Badger:  Besides, you're rich.  You're not making dinner yourself.

Circe:  Hey, someone has to watch over the help.

 

Changing into her hero outfit and tuning in the police band, she hears reports all over town about the wall.  And then harsh static blocks all radio communication.  A check of her radar shows it is also being jammed.

 

GM:  You also smell something unusual... Raspberries.  And you shouldn't be smelling anything, since your spacesuit is fully sealed.

Most of the other players instantly get the joke and begin laughing, but Maker is thinking along different lines.
Maker:  It's an artifact!  Like on Warehouse 13!  Am I smelling fudge?
GM:  No, not fudge.  Raspberries.

Shadowboxer:  Your radar is being jammed.

Pops:  "Only one man would dare give me the raspberry!
Other players in unison:  "Lone Star!"

 

After determining that the wall is actually part of a dome covering a good chunk of the city, the heroes start checking for how they can get inside.  They learn that it stops at ground level (so the subway tunnels and underground roadways aren't blocked) and doesn't extend underwater.  Also, additional experimentation shows that they can damage the dome, maybe even poke a hole through it, but it quickly heals back the BODY damage done.

 

GM:  So it's not impossible to get in.  Just a pain in the a**.

 

The players determine that the dome is centered approximately at the Federal Reserve Bank.

 

Maker:  Foxbat did this, didn't he?  He was in the news, kidnapping the former chair of the Boston Fed.

GM:  I guarantee you, Foxbat did not make this dome.  He doesn't have ping pong balls that big.
Honey Badger:  I'm sure Batfox would disagree with you there.

 

The players finally venture inside the dome, to learn that it's considerably colder in there.  And also snowing.

Shadowboxer:  So someone turned Boston into a giant snow globe?

Malarky:  The house was trying to warn you.

GM:  If it could have laughed, it would have.

 

The team teleports to a building near the Fed, and sees something glowing and pulsing atop one of the towers of the Fed Reserve building.  They also see a police car pull up and two cops warily get out, guns drawn.  A missile streaks down toward them.

 

Pops:  I'm going to reflect it back at the person who fired it.  (rolls)  That would beat an OCV of 12!  Ha!

GM:  Wait. How many active points can you reflect?
Pops:  70.  And above that I'm -1 per 5 points over 70.

GM:  Okay...  your roll is -14.  I think you missed.

Pops:  14 points, so I'm minus 3, and beat an OCV of 9.

GM:  No, not 14 points above 70.  You're minus 14 to your OCV.

Pops:  But that would be.... 140 active points! 

GM:  Yep, sounds about right.

 

The missile releases a cloud of reddish gas.  And the cops start to change.  Their hair turns blond, and their uniforms melt away to look like quite different. 

 

GM:  One of the cops say, "Crikey!"  They both look exactly the same, just like this.  (shows picture of a certain blond Australian ninja)

Pops:  Who is that?
Malarky:  That's Seeker.  He was one of the original Champions, from the Big Blue Book.

Shadowboxer:  (begins laughing)  Don't you get it?  It was a Seeker Missile!

GM:  Yup.  (pause)  He tried making a Heat Seeker Missile, but he couldn't get the spontaneous combustion to work right.

 

Shadowboxer uses his shadow sight to scout the rooftop.  He sees the Centipedemobile (or rather, 6 segments of the Centipedemobile) parked up there, with four more pseudo-Seekers alternately loading and unloading carts of money between two large holes in the elevator shaft, and several pods of the Centipedemobile.  [i actually bought some multicolored ping pong balls and stuck velcro on the front and back of each to have a visual representation of Foxbat's iconic vehicle on the map.]

 

Nexus:  They're taking money out of the Fed?

GM:  Some are taking carts of money out, others are putting carts of money back in.

Maker:  Ah.  They're replacing real money with Foxbat Dollars.

 

GM:  The guy who fired the Seeker Missile looks like a Doctor Horrible cosplay -- lab coat, goggles.  (shows picture)

Honey Badger:  Death ray?

Pops:  Yep, looks like he has one of those.

GM:  He's also carrying a shield that looks like it's made of cardboard, with the hexman painted on it.  You know, from the 5th Edition rulebook.  And the shied is covered with bubble wrap.

Shadowboxer:  It's made out of cardboard?  Really?

GM:  Well, Cardboardium. 

 

They also see what looks to be a D&D beholder in a flying "chair" with a bunch of scary-looking weapons, and a man who looks remarkably familiar:  a young Elvis Presley.  [A shout-out to Storn Cook, whose excellent artwork was used for Blinky and the King.]

 

GM:  And as he's overseeing the pseudo-Seekers, The King is singing.  (turns on MP3 player and plays Return to Sender.)

 

GM:  Oh, I almost forgot!  Each pod of the Centipedemobile is topped by a giant hat, helmet, or headgear.  (pointing at pods in turn)  Cowboy hat, spring antennae, diving helmet, aviator helmet, racing helmet... and this one looks like it has the Dark Helmet from Spaceballs, complete with eye holes.

Honey Badger:  Okay, you guys deal with them.  I'm going to be busy.

Circe:  Adding to your hat collection?

HB:  You know it.

 

The heroes teleport to the rooftop and attack!  Maker zaps a good chunk of the Foxbat Force, while Honey Badger leaps to the red pot and grabs an envelope (with "Honey Badger" written on the front) taped to the racing helmet.  The card inside has two honey badgers holding trios of red heart-shaped balloons with "Honey Badger Do Care" in large letters on the front.  Inside it reads:

 

 

 

Honey Badger:  If you're reading this, then you should know that I included the hats and helmets just for you.  How about a little quid pro quo and you let us go?  Your pal, Foxbat.

 

PS:  We left a case of beer and some pizzas in this pod of the Spectacular Centipedemobile.  Enjoy!

 

PPS:  Don't forget to support me in my bid for President.  Let's Give America a Do-Over!

 

The King leaps up onto the yellow pod, does a hip shimmy, and goes into a karate stance.

 

Honey Badger:  Is he wearing blue suede shoes?  I'm gonna step on 'em.

Nexus:  (to Honey Badger)  Don't you dare break his pelvic thrust!

HB:  I... don't know what to say to that one.

The King:  If you want, I can show you how to do it.  The chicks really dig a good pelvic thrust.

GM:  (switches MP3 player to begin Don't Be Cruel.)

 

Circe mind-blasts Professor Steriaca.

 

Professor Steriaca:  Hey, that was pretty powerful!  What was that six dice?  Seven?

Circe:  Uh, yeah.  Seven.

Steriaca:  Impressive!  Still, we can't have any more of that!  (reaches into his Wonderflonium case and pulls out a tin foil hat, which he plunks on his own head)  And you know this is both Hardened AND Impenetrable!

 

One of the Foxbots flies over to help the professor.

Steriaca:  Ah, Froederick!  You've always been my favorite.

Froederick:  Yeth, mathter!

 

(more to follow, hopefully soon)

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Additional quotes from Foxbatty Fed:

 

Unfortunately, I only put about 6 songs in my MP3 Elvis playlist.

 

Maker:  Could someone please take out The King so we can listen to something else?

 

Blinky is facing off against Malarky.  He opens fire with his autocannon, which Foxbat made sure is loaded with rubber bullets.

 

Blinky:  It's a good thing for you that Foxbat took away my portable population annihlator!

 

Malarky creates a mass of thorny plants around Blinky and a pseudo-Seeker, but Blinky teleports out.

 

Blinky:  Irritating, isn't it?

 

Blinky uses a net missile on Malarky, who immediately teleports out.

Malarky:  Yes, it is irritating, isn't it?

 

Since she arrived, Nexus has been filming the battle with her smartphone.

 

GM:  Okay, Nexus' phase.

Nexus:  (move her character about a hex and changes facing)  Okay, now I'll film Circe and Professor Steriaca.

Maker:  Are you planning to actually, y'know, help anytime soon?  You could hit The King with an OCV drain, for instance.

Nexus:  (shrug) Nah, I'm fine. 

 

Circe hits Professor Steriaca with his telekinetic blast, since the mad scientist apparently protected himself from mental attacks.

 

Steriaca:  Ah, I see you made a Tactics roll!  Well, since I have it handy...  (aims and fires a Seeker Missile at Circe)

Circe:  NO!!!

(Missile explodes, the gas enveloping Circe.  The GM rolls 1d6, getting a 3.)

Circe:  (OOC, laughs) Circe has 10 Power Defense.

GM:  That's fine.  Do me a favor, roll 1d6 every Segment and add them up.  It's a Damage Over Time attack, defenses only apply once.  It has Partial Transform, so let me know when it gets past 10 points.

Circe:  &^%#@&%$#!  (looks at Seeker's picture, sees that he is shirtless)  Um, it's gonna get kinda risque when her top disappears, isn't it?

GM:  No worries, the Comic Code requires that Circe transform into a male before her top goes away.

 

Malarky damages Blinky's teleport chair, then traps the flying alien in an Amber Globe.

 

Blinky:  Ha!  I'll simply shoot my way out!  (Opens fire with his autocannon, and then begins screaming)

Malarky:  Yeah.  Rubber bullets bounce.

 

Honey Badger finally KO's The King.

 

The King:  (wavering, fading voice)  Warden threw a party in the county jail...

 

Pops spent most of the fight teleporting into each Centipedemobile pod, and teleporting the Foxbots 20 meters into the air.  The first one (Froederick) fell to the rooftop, taking minor damage.  The second, Freddo, turns on his flight.

 

GM:  Apparently Froederick forgot he can fly.

 

Honey Badger decides to take a mid-fight break.

 

Honey Badger:  Which pod has the beer and pizza?
GM: Turbo, the red one.  (pause)  I thought about putting it in Hopper, which moves with Leaping.  All those beers, nicely shaken up...

 

Circe finishes off Steriaca with another telekinetic blast, then fires at Foxbot Froederick, who uses a Deflector Shield to deflect the attack.

Froederick:  In retrothepct, I probably should have uthed that to protect the profethor...

 

After Pops has removed four Foxbots from Centipedemobile pods, the front two (Wings and Porter) disconnect from the other pods and lift off.

 

Honey Badger:  No getting away that easy!   (leaps at them)  I'm going to try a Move-Through.

GM:  Before you roll, the Foxbot in the Porter pod was holding his action.  (rolls to-hit)  As you leap toward them, you get about 6 meters away when he uses the aportation ray to teleport you to the other side of them.

Circe:  Well, at least somebody is going off the roof.

Honey Badger:  (shrugs)  I still have my can of beer and slice of pizza.  I'll finish them on the way down.

 

The heroes prevail against the rooftop foes, though they're disappointed that Professor Steriaca had a long-range teleport harness triggered to get him to safety if he fell unconscious.  As they prepare to head down the elevator shaft to take on Foxbat and the rest of Foxbat Force...

Circe:  So, how does Transform work?

Malarky:  Once it does more than twice your BODY, you're fully transformed.

Circe:  And how many dice total am I rolling?
GM:  It's 16 intervals.  So a total of 16d6.

Circe:  16 dice?!?!

GM:  It turns out, you need to do a lot of extra BODY to bring a normal person up to Seeker's power level. 

Malarky:  Any way I can use my Healing spell to reverse it?

GM:  Probably not.  The max you can Heal anybody per day is 12 BODY, way lower than the total BODY he's likely to take.  (to Circe)  Don't worry, you'll be back to normal in a day.

Circe:  But I'll have to take on Foxbat as this!  (waves Seeker character sheet angrily)

 

(We'll be running Part 2 of Foxbatty Fed next week, so hopefully I'll post more quotes after that.)

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