Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Back in Black

Those of you looking forward to more of Guthrun's Viking Diary -- hello Mike! -- will have to be patient; our GM is taking bit of a break so we'll be returning to our longboat in a few weeks. Until then, Stuart has stepped in and has resumed his Deadlands Noir campaign and has summarised the most recent session in two parts here and here for those interested; I am playing Doctor Ross LeBoeuf, a character with zero combat ability but a knack for persuasion.

I am having great fun. The game is based on Savage Worlds, a system of which I am quite fond, and Stuart has done an excellent job of creating a vivid playground full of interesting options; the adventure with the supersoldier-turned-boxer that took up a couple of evenings of play was a side job quite unrelated to our characters and their goals, and I have no doubt that there are plenty more of these off-piste tangents hidden in the setting. Each of our characters does have what could be called a main plot that is there to be pursued should we so choose, but there's also a real sense that we can wander off and do anything we like; after a few years of packaged adventures -- some of which have been quite good, lest this be seen as an attack on the published campaign format -- it's quite refreshing to play in a game that seems to offer so much freedom.

I've wanted to run a game of this sort for a while. The last time I had any success with such a format was a bonkers Fighting Fantasy campaign that I made up as I went along in my teens; my Rogue Trader campaign was an attempt to do something similar but it collapsed for a number of reasons, and my Stardust Investigations Call of Cthulhu thing was supposed to be an open, player-led game, but I don't think I communicated that idea to the players, so that didn't work either.

One day I will try again - perhaps with Modiphius' post-apocalyptic Mutant Zero -- but for now I have a number of more structured but exciting campaigns to run, and I'm quite happy roaming around Stuart's alternate 1930's New Orleans.

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