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Messages - Cthuluzord

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Out-of-character: I'm voting for "The Realists." It don't get more real than what went down in that damn particle collider.  Failing that, "The Arcadians" or "The Achaeans," maybe.

As much as all our characters were affected by Shift's BADASS death, commemorating it with the name "New Ideal" might be a really bad idea. Consider the fact that the Ideal was wiped out by some kind of gigantic space explosion, whereas we were almost wiped out my a single crime family.  I don't think we want to up-sell our abilities too much and have the government expect us to stop a meteor or something.

But that's just me!  Here's what Norm would have to contribute to the name debate:


(sound of a beer can being opened)



Me too.  When Ross uses that character to murder all of us, I imagine he will quip something about it being "the best of all possible worlds."

We're halfway through it.  We started late so we had to shut it down right as they were really starting to get a bead on what was going on.  I think the plan is to finish is sometime next week.  Whenever it is posted, the scenario will be called "Lover in the Ice."

That does sound like a cool campaign, Tad.

And I guess I am being overly dramatic, but if we TPK, it seems like a brand new campaign, even if we reroll in DIY transhumanism.  Same setting, but we can't really refer to anything we've done in the past 15 games or so, know...dead.  New characters, new conflicts, etc.

Mainly, I'm okay if my character has to die (you should see how much Base Willpower I'm dumping into rolls), but I don't want anyone else to go down if at all possible.  I want this campaign to be New-World worthy in terms of investment, if for no other reason than I can understand some of inside jokes for once.  :)

P.S. I ain't no field commander!  I'm down for whoever suggesting whatever, so long as it has a chance to work and we all work on it together.

Crap at combat.  I can plan alright, I suppose.  It's just that when we try to pull off the plan, I'll end up botching five times in a row.  My dice have lead weights on all the critical sides.

But maybe command too, cuz' I certainly didn't help us out if this is the situation we're in  :(

I'm just trying to figure a way to save this campaign.

Illusions on Candide would negate his attack roll by making him shoot at air, thus making him burn dice that could be used to dodge or move or use another attack.  Essentially, it serves the same purpose as the illusions attack, though I agree it could be more effective.  My main point is one you seem to agree with: we have to heap status effects and attacks on single enemies if we have a hope of damaging them, whilst at the same time providing ourselves the minimum amount of protection from the other ones.  That's going to require a lot of coordination and cooperation.

So I imagine it would take a round to program the angel.  By the next round, Candide will be up and we have to, at minimum, knock him down again.  That means almost everyone needs to attack him at once, or illusion him successfully, in your case.  Hopefully, the angel will be safe because Thad can knock out the burned Finn in the first round.

So...I can make it at four on Thursday.  How about you guys?

Shift is relatively unhurt, if I remember correctly.  Baz is a lost cause, and Wheaties is near cover if he manages to take down Aegis first.  I'd heal Raoul, as he has armor and we now know which people can do non-physical attacks. Can the angel heal while you take separate actions? I know you aren't offensive, but your attack illusions gobble attack success.  It may not do a ton of damage, but it forces whoever is under attack to throw one more set at an attack.

So for instance, Norm has an attack that can do a successful called shot from almost anywhere at the cost of only one willpower.  Let's say I call a headshot.  It does 4 damage in Shock AND Killing, has a Penetration of 2, but only hits at a width of 2.  It's slow, but it kill most humanoids if it hits.  Now consider Candide.  You Illusion him, I shoot, and Shift fires the Barrett.  Automatically, his highest set has to go to my attack or there will be 2 shock and killing to his head (he might not be able to even stop it), and any declared attacks will take penalties from your attack and/or Shift's attack landing.

So I say tell the Angel to start with Raoul and heal the next most damaged every round after, then join in the attack.  You may not be death-dealer, but you'll help fuck their dodges and attacks.

With regards to our tactics, I agree that we aren't doing too bad.  That all the PC's are even alive and (mostly) unharmed at this point is a testament to that.  That said, I don't think our plan is good enough, as is, to keep us alive.  At this point, we aren't doing much but keeping sweat on Paragon's brow as she prepares to murder us.

I spent hours thinking about this last night; I feel really bad for helping convince everyone to get their characters killed (Tom excluded, of course).  I've gone over scenarios again and again.

The problem, as I see it, is that we all built powers based on reliability, whereas the Ross's team is min-maxed for death-dealing.  Normally, we'd be screwed, but at this point in the fight, we still have the numbers.  Two of their members are prone, and Squad Leader is going to continue to burn willpower to shut Paragon down.  What we have to do is focus our fire on individuals from 2-3 angles until they go down whilst neutralizing the others' actions.  That way, even with their 10d pools in everything, we gobble the shit out of their successes, attacks, armor, and dodge checks. 

Think of the grenadier in the hydroplant game; no amount of super power keeps you from becoming paste when attacks come from 4 angles.  We can coordinate this in game because of Squad Leader's Luyten communicators, so it isn't even a role-playing issue.

I don't want to play anybody's characters, but I made a table of declared actions by round, for everyone, just to see if we had a chance.  It's the only idea I have as to how to live through this.  Any other plan would be great, but I feel like if we go in there with the strategy of "'ll do this next," we'll be screwed.

For instance, a few things would have to happen in the first round...
1. Shift has got to chuck that bitch over the railing. The catwalk isn't  50 feet so it won't kill her, and it might knock her out.  Even if it doesn't knock her out, the weapons are all on the catwalk after the disarm and she'll be prone for a round; it'll reduce her threat greatly and allow shift to immediately grab the .50 (WHICH WE NEED NEED NEED FOR CANDIDE AND HIS SPORE CANNON)
2. Wheaties has got to kill Aegis (even if he dies in the process)
3. Jason has to get the Angel to heal Raoul and get him in the game (and if Jason can act separate of the Angel, then some Attack Illusions on Aegis wouldn't hurt)
4. Aaron has to reboot
5. Baz has to spend his death round attacking Paragon
6. Squad leader has to nullify Paragon
7. Norm has to attack Paragon.
8. Thad has to attack the Finn on the ground before he can start nullifying again.

See how this could work? Paragon's matches would be gobbled by the nullification, the fire, and Norm's attack, and only then would she have sets for attacking Thad (no fucking way at a 10 d max); she might even take damage.  The Finn has 3 Killing to every location because of Baz and will be easy to take out of the game as he is getting up. If Aegis and the Veera get taken out of the fight (if only temporarily), the only ones with line of sight on the forcefield are Pryo (who'll have trouble penetrating 4 HD) and Candide, who is spending the whole round standing back up. 

Best case scenario, we damage Paragon while eliminating both Finns and Aegis, while getting a flyer with ranged lasers and a tank back in the fight for more focus fire.  And we can even survive some disappointments with that scenario...maybe.

Next round, we focus fire the next big threat (probably Candide) with increased firepower and less concerns.  Reposition and repeat.

Like I said, I don't think we are doing bad, but if keep up the current strategy--if anyone does anything other than fight as a single unit--ain't nobody getting out of there alive.  Other ideas are welcome and will receive my vote (I don't hunger for any more responsibility in this bloodbath), but I feel like anything we do has to be collective or coordinated if don't want to re-roll.  We can get back to our typical in-fighting and backstabbing if we survive; for Thursday, we need military-levels of discipline.

Everyone! Think of what your character would do in a getting ready-for-battle montage.  We have to have one before the fight begins (you know, to say goodbye to our PC's before Ross murders them all).

For those interested, it looks like I'll be running two sessions of a A Dirty World at Gencon: Friday and Saturday at 10:00 am (all times tentative).  I'd love to play with some of the folks I've only ever encountered on the forums, so come on by and help me earn some Arc Dream booth credit!

Here's the description that will be in the catalogue.

The Dangers of Fraternization
Berlin, 1946. The once mighty city lies in ruins, controlled jointly
by powers that are Allies in name only. Identical mother-infant
murders take place on either side of the Russian-American border, and
now a third newborn has gone missing. Soviet NKVD and the U.S. Army
military police launch a joint effort to find the killer, centered
around a burlesque club thatís a hot spot for the resurgent German
underworld. In danger of losing their investment, the crime bosses of
Berlin suddenly find themselves as eager to find the murderer as their
occupiers. Can this hasty alliance find justice, or will it implode
under the weight of national intrigue, old grudges and human greed?

So next week is going to be like that room...only with more of our corpses?

Seconded.  Damn good role-playing there, roomie.  And here I was thinking I had a good write up for Norm, but you probably already know Chirop's social security number  :)

And btw, after the trial, Norm and Chirop are probably going to have to have a pretty heated in-character argument about the whole formally-a-professional-criminal thing.  If we survive, that is.

Since we gridlocked on the vote tonight regarding what to do with The Syndicate, I thought that I'd put all my arguments down on the forums for the team to consider.

First, here's the intelligence that informs my decision:
1. Aegis isn't working for the syndicate; they are the syndicate.  What we thought was two armies has really always been one.
2.  The hybrids do have a fabber, but it is guarded by a leftover mindless pangloss monster and inaccessible currently.  They will help us if we fight.
3. Paragon is some evolution/devolution of a Pangloss clone.
4.  Paragon, the remnants of the syndicate, and some amount of the Luyten weapons are located in an Ideal base outside of town that has a hallidron collider.  This base also has ANOTHER fabber in addition to the one beneath Vanderburg Mall.
5.  The evil plan, if we don't deal, is to release innocents armed with Luyten tech and pumped with drugs into the city while simultaneously freeing all the prisoners in the Finn's jails.

Based on this information, I think we should strike the Syndicate a final blow despite the enormous risk because...
1. It is unlikely that whatever city Paragon retreats to will be able to stop her.  She tried to destabilize the entire govt. of California for some evil plot; god knows what evil she will achieve unrestricted.
2. It isn't impossible that her entire plan isn't some scheme to bring Pangloss back into the world.
3. If the Syndicate buck is merely passed on to the next city, the Heroes of New Arcadia have essentially done nothing to discourage further criminal endeavors from giving the city a shot.
4.  The Syndicate WILL return, and they will not be stupid enough to leave us completely unsupervised while they regain strength.  Striking now is dangerous, but we have the initiative.  Waiting will make us a known quantity and give them the choice of not only when, but where.
5.  New Arcadia will be no better even if the Syndicate leaves peacefully.  No homeless or hungry will be fed from their repurposed fabbers.  No fewer super-soldiers will walk the streets (they can just to the new city for treatments and come back).  No new criminal endeavors will fear overstepping their bounds because the city's only truly effective law enforcement (i.e. us) negotiates with terrorists.

IF we did majority vote to attack, the plan I suggest is as follows; it would require all six of us play in a single session.
1. Using spores cultured in tonight's adventure, plant a sample of Luyten's disease in a food truck headed to the Finn prison.
2. Call Walker, who then contacts the Marshals (already arranged) to do an inspection of the Finn jail.  The tip called in will be that the Syndicate is using the disease to kill possible witnesses turned state's evidence, just like they did with the Tank.  Implicate the Finns.
3. While Marshals are in route, position Squatters, Crystal Children, Hybrids and police armed with tranq. darts (already arranged) around the city.  They will be response teams to pacify any civilians that get released and go beserk.
4. Chirop is given emergency work release by the city.  As his future hangs in the balance, his job will be to coordinate strike teams in the city, the most visibly noble part of the plan.  Hopefully, his actions will play well in the upcoming trial.
5. Marshals inspect food.  By federal law, they must evacuate all prisoners to other counties while a clean-up and investigation takes place.  Finns are removed from the picture, as are the criminals meant to join the riot.  Half the plot becomes unviable.
6. As soon as possible after evacuation of the prison begins, the Heroes of New Arcadia strike the Ideal base, giving the Syndicate as little time as possible to mobilize any Luyten berserker cells hidden across the city.  The heroes STICK TOGETHER, combining their defenses and focus firing whenever possible.  Squad Leader will definitely be present and kept to the rear to deal with Paragon's powers.  Additional allies that might join the cause are the Knight Errent, Raoul the Rock Fighter, and any number of hard hitting Hybrids.
7. Chirop supervises defense efforts from the air against any threats that pop up in the city.  Non-lethal pacification is the first priority, followed by containment, with elimination the last possible option.
8. The goal of the main attack would be to, as an overwhelmingly powerful and flexibly Talented group of  five PC heroes and NPC allies, to focus fire and quickly eliminate threats before they can coordinate and surround us, ultimately seeking to eliminate Paragon herself and sever the Syndicate legacy of organized hyper-villany once and for all.
9.  After the base threat is eliminated, any able bodies would devout the remainder of their efforts to assisting Chirop back in the city.

All of this is predicated on surprise, and this plan wouldn't be as effective if any further negotiations with Paragon took place beforehand.  Still, I think it would bring the greatest chance for success, and in terms of ethical considerations, I feel it is the only viable option for the reasons stated above, despite the danger.

No offense was taken at all! I thought it was a great comment and so brought it up.  It even inspired a mechanic for the next ADW game I'm writing.  I'm telling characters how certain objects make them feel on tiny notecards as a clue mechanic; they can then share that info to get closer to solving the mystery (their own identities!) or play close to the vest and use the information to manipulate other players.  I don't know if it will work or not, but I wouldn't have come up with the idea without the comment.

...And I totally misinterpreted that comment!  I thought it was interesting before, but now that I know you meant it as a "show don't tell" criticism, I downright agree with you.  That's fiction writing 101 stuff, but for some reason, I only think of it when I'm actually writing something.  But as you point out, the use of imagery to convey emotion is as important, if not more important, in an off-the-cuff RPG narration.  I overlooked that and will focus on it more in the future.

So all in all, thanks for giving a damn enough to give constructive criticism at all. That's very flattering and I'll take all of it I can get, from everyone. I'm new to this GM thing and want to get better.

General Chaos / Re: RPPR Confessional
« on: February 28, 2011, 05:25:19 PM »
Go for it.  I'll put the notes up soon as I get some time to revise them.

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