Author Topic: Delta Green Story Workshoping  (Read 12869 times)

constructacon

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Delta Green Story Workshoping
« on: October 08, 2016, 06:58:48 PM »
so am i the only one who see's the rash of clown attacks and sees DG Material. while i know little to nothing about the mythos or DG other than what i hear on the AP's i was wondering what you all though about workshoping this idea into a campaign

RadioactiveBeer

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2016, 09:29:18 PM »
So, I think a few things that would need to be hammered out first off would be:

1) Location. A nationwide rash is unsettling, sure, but it's also not very easy to build an investigation or a session around. I'd recommend centring the "clown infestation" in one state, county or even town in particular to make it easier to get your player characters to the right place at the right time.

2) Agency. While Cowboy DG will send basically anyone anywhere because they don't the resources to be picky, Program DG will probably tap select agents for the job. So the question is what agencies are likely to be the ones DG would send? Is a mixed party okay or should there be, say, a strong CDC presence in case Clownitis is contagious?

3) The Inciting Event. Guys in clown suits is creepy, but it's not Delta Green's kind of creepy. There's nothing inhuman or supernatural about a man in costume. So there needs to be something more to the clowns that would get a government conspiracy that investigate the supernatural involved. What piece of weird found footage leaks on YouTube before our boys at the NSA snatch it down and use it as a briefing material? Does the clown's mouth open too wide, and in too many directions? Instead of teeth, does its mouth seem to instead contain the star-stained void of the outer cosmos?

4) Okay, here's where we get more into digging into the Lovecraftian interpretation of "creepy clown". Now, where my head goes is that a lot of the horror around clowns comes from the uncanny valley effect in that they're human-like but rendered just inhuman enough (clothes alter their apparent proportions, faces made confusing by painting one expression over another) so you could say that a clown-monster is how the human brain processes and justifies... something that looks KIND OF humanoid but with weird proportions and with a face that is at once static and mobile, as if a face that is at once smiling and sad. Like how in Under The Pyramids, the monster Houdini sees inspires the Sphinx not because it literally looks like a sphinx but because it has "lion-like" qualities at the same time as "human-like" and "eagle-like" ones and the sphinx was how people held those ideas in their head at the same time without the truth of Whatever It Was making something snap inside. Perhaps the Clowns are, in fact, some hominid offshoot ala the Kn Yan or Tcho-Tcho? But with the alien-ness dial turned way up.

OOH, this just came to me: the Clowns want to be seen. They need affirming in this reality. What if they're from Outside, some alternate universe or cosmic otherworld, and are trying to quantum tunnel their way into our reality? Something like a Hound of Tindalos, occupying more or less the same dimensional-predator ecosystem but at a different level and with different tactics. They appear human-ish because that's the closest analogue we have, their proportions are weird and their expressions conflict because they are existing in quantum superstates of tall/short and happy/sad. 

clockworkjoe

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2016, 05:30:38 PM »
Clowns are all caused by a single insect of Shan who flies from host to host, making them put on clown masks and scare people. Why is the insect doing that? He's trying to find another Shan hiding in America. They met at a circus when they both tried to possess the same clown decades ago. He wants to find that particular Shan because only it knows a ritual to summon Azathoth. The ritual required an artifact neither had at the time. The clown Shan has now found it and wants to perform the ritual.

Twisting H

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2016, 09:16:07 PM »
I'm going to take Ross's idea and reverse the orientation of the vector.

A town is having deranged clown sightings.  Reports of people being threatened culminate with at least one beheading and one headshot to residents.  There is some evidence that points to the clown.

The trick is, there IS a Shan in the town, it simply is in everyone else but the "clown".

Possibilities

1) Town is located on/near water reservoir to major city.  Shan crashlanded ship on now site of aforementioned major city eons ago.  Shan escaped to Town through water supply recently.  Shan plans to recruit/make hosts/mesmerize as many citizens as possible into a cabal that will work together to poison the water supply to the major city with a) standard killing poison or b) hallucinogenic poison so that it can get it's cult to escavate it's ancient ship and escape into the atmosphere without the humans realizing there is an alien about.  The Shan realizes it is vulnerable to the Air Force and NASA for example.

In this case assume the Shan has some sort of biological symbiotic that it inserts into multiple people to run a sort of "shan tact-net" to functionally possess more than one person.  There you go Caleb, your war of revenge against tact-net continues.

Who is the clown?  Psychotic who could not be possessed by the Shan and now hunts down the Shan cultists or Survivor who is using clown facepaint as makeshift camo because he is paranoid.  In the latter case the Shan cultists are trying to flush out or kill the Survivor and decide to turn to the FBI for help because well, they don't have good tradecraft and the FBI if made cultists would be great hunters....

2) There is no clown.

Two Shans enter Town. One Shan leaves.  No really. A Shan and a Heretic Shan (one worships Azathoth the other some other God maybe Nyarty).   The rash of abherrant evil clown sightings has made a majority of the townsfolk afraid of clowns.  When a Shan enters them, they see a person possessed by the opposing Shan as a threatening evil clown (Shan is activating primal and symbolic fear centers of the townsfolk brain).  The Shan tries to goad the possessed to kill the opposing Shan's host with this hallucination.

This would require both Shan to be less powerful than normal; perhaps they are mystically spent from crashlanding nearby or they are relying on guerrilla tactics because they expended so much energy trying to go head to head.

If DG doesn't act soon, the town will rip itself apart in an orgy of violence and madness. 

Maybe one Shan has a spell the other Shan wants as Ross suggested.


Twisting H

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2016, 03:12:53 AM »
Some Delta Green Workshop challenges purely for entertainment.  My imagination has hit walls, full stop, with all three. 

1) A Cthugha story that doesn't revolve around fire or firemen.

Not apropos for the challenge, but Lore has an excellent and truly very creepy episode on human spontaneous combustion.    http://www.lorepodcast.com/episodes/44


2) A Ithaqua story that doesn't revolve around storms, the North, or freezing blizzards/snow.


3) Re: Shan.  Make the Beings from Xiclotl (Shan tree like animal servitors) actually scary and totally distinct from Dark Young.  Right now they are quite boring in a D&D sense.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2016, 09:27:45 AM by Twisting H »

RadioactiveBeer

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2016, 10:49:23 PM »
1) A Cthugha story that doesn't revolve around fire or firemen.

Yoga.

Hatha and Sahaja yoga have practices intended to awaken kundalini, the coiled primal energy housed in the base of the spine, often visually represented as a serpent of fire. The idea is to provoke a state of extreme personal invigoration, vitality, bliss and transcendence.

In an obscure mythos-based tradition of yoga, one is not awakening an inherent force so much as preparing oneself to be host to an outside force. It's dressed up with good hippy-dippy nonsense about "awakening oneself to the cosmos" and so on, but basically it's about fooling rich white people into becoming hosts for fire vampires. DG gets involved when a series of bizarre crimes in TOWN X are carried out by people who then spontaneously catch fire and burn to death before they can be apprehended; these people were yoga students who had reached a high enough level to become host to a "kundalini being" - a fire vampire.

2) A Ithaqua story that doesn't revolve around storms, the North, or freezing blizzards/snow.

You know where's cold? Space.

Astrophysicists staring out into the cosmos are making an unsettling discovery; "cold spots" and the so-called 'super-void' that account for billions of light years worth of cosmos where there should be stars, should be heat - and there isn't. In the cosmic horror of Delta Green, these voids are a kind of life in and of themselves, living nothings, embodiments of entropic stasis; even after the stars come right and the old ones walk, these things will be waiting for their time to shine. Maybe the thing we call Ithaqa is an infant or degenerated version of one of these un-things, a small sentient eddy of heat-erasure.

These are philosophical, existential threats, so far and distant as to be not even actually "present" in the scenario; instead it's all to do with the nihilism their discovery creates in the DG friendly astrophysicist who goes to the Green Box and starts opening crates because why not, right? Sun'll swallow us before they do, nothing matters, etc etc.

3) Re: Shan.  Make the Beings from Xiclotl (Shan tree like animal servitors) actually scary and totally distinct from Dark Young.  Right now they are quite boring in a D&D sense.

This is a tricky one because a) as you say, they're very similar to Dark Young and b) they're so tied to the Shan that it's hard to do something with them that isn't ACTUALLY about the Shan.

I think one of the interesting things about the Mythos is the idea of Shoggoths and servitor races, these biological construct creatures. So what if, instead of being merely enslaved aliens the Xiclotl have a function, some biological reason the Shan keep them around other than for muscle?

My first thinking is terraforming; they're walking micro-climate generators that spit out toxic atmospheres that allow Shan to exist in their natural state without needing to hide in a human body. It makes them more interesting and bizarre, I think, and introduces more opportunity for bizarre descriptions instead of "it's like a tree but metallic".

Twisting H

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2016, 06:36:27 AM »
 ;D

Every idea here is 100%, Grade A, fantastic RadioactiveBeer!   Hopefully I have time to post more thoughts soon, including how one could bring Cthugha (as the star Fomalhaut) into conflict with Ithaqua (as an Avatar of the cold blackness of Space) and maybe use Dereleth's "elemental conflict" idea as something not insipid.


My first thinking is terraforming; they're walking micro-climate generators that spit out toxic atmospheres that allow Shan to exist in their natural state without needing to hide in a human body. It makes them more interesting and bizarre, I think, and introduces more opportunity for bizarre descriptions instead of "it's like a tree but metallic".

Number one, brilliant. Second thought, I'm running with the idea that the Beings from Xiclotl create a localized field that makes it easier for the Shan to operate in. Also lets consider that the Beings have a metallic skin. 

Lets say that Earth light interacts with the Beings to create an illusion of normalcy to observers from far away.   For example from 100 yards the Beings look like local trees and because of how light interacts with the Being's metallic skin, Shan illusions are enhanced.  That crash landed Shan ship really does look like a rock.  It's like Mythos farsightedness though.  Get close enough and the illusion enhancement give way, ... which incidently puts the investigator in range of the Being's bludgeoning tentacles.

Also this illusion-strengthening effect only works in the day time.  In the night time, no Earth-light so the Shan and Beings are more or less revealed, but again, it's dark.  Electric earth light partially activates the farsighted illusion field so investigators with flashlights will have their primal parts of their brain screaming at them to flee from a predator but not be able to pin down why.

This could lead to a human population where a Shan is located having a rash of insanity during the night in addition to the Shan's machinations.

TRNSHMN

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2016, 09:41:40 AM »
Don't have anything concrete but I might as well throw my two cents in.

For Cthuga the first thought I had was bombs. Not just any old bombs, but thermobaric weapons. The biggest non-nuke fireballs man has managed so far. In use since the Vietnam War, including possibly Syria today. They're also a lot easier to get your hands on than nukes. Could be the trigger for an investigation and the plot device of a big finale, a giant conflagration as the climax of a ritual.

As for Ithaqua, the obvious path is to lean on the hunger aspect. Cannibal cults are still usable if you focus on a specific aspect, but you could also head for a more circumstance based approach. A humanitarian catastrophe, like the aftermath of Katrina, people left isolated, dwindling supplies, so cold and hungry that they reach out and invite in the essence of Ithaqua to survive. Once the emergency is over, these people still carry the arctic cold in their bellies, ravenous, in agony that only the warmth of living flesh and blood can beat back for a while.

constructacon

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2016, 12:50:25 PM »
i was reading all of these great ideas and when i came across this one i wondered...
Quote
These are philosophical, existential threats, so far and distant as to be not even actually "present" in the scenario; instead it's all to do with the nihilism their discovery creates in the DG friendly astrophysicist who goes to the Green Box and starts opening crates because why not, right? Sun'll swallow us before they do, nothing matters, etc etc.

...has anyone ever done an adventure based solely around someone raiding a Green Box, or maybe two or three "things" inside of a Green Box disagreed with each other

Twisting H

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2016, 09:50:59 AM »
...has anyone ever done an adventure based solely around someone raiding a Green Box, or

Technically "Lover in the Ice" could be seen as "raiding" a green box.

Also the Shotgun Scenario "Something for Christmas"

http://fairfieldproject.wikidot.com/something-for-christmas

Also do yourself a favor and read "Agent Purple's Green Box Blues". It's great.

http://fairfieldproject.wikidot.com/agent-purple-s-green-box-blues

or  maybe two or three "things" inside of a Green Box disagreed with each other

Not that I've seen the way you are describing.

See "Metamorphosis" however.

http://fairfieldproject.wikidot.com/metamorphosis

« Last Edit: October 16, 2016, 09:55:45 AM by Twisting H »

Twisting H

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Re: Delta Green Story Workshoping
« Reply #10 on: October 16, 2016, 01:47:00 PM »
Don't have anything concrete

I disagree!

As for Ithaqua, the obvious path is to lean on the hunger aspect. Cannibal cults are still usable if you focus on a specific aspect, but you could also head for a more circumstance based approach. A humanitarian catastrophe, like the aftermath of Katrina, people left isolated, dwindling supplies, so cold and hungry that they reach out and invite in the essence of Ithaqua to survive.

The thermobaric idea is interesting, but I really like this one. 

Somewhere previously I posted the opening fiction to the (oWoD) Changeling Kithbook : Redcaps, which connected hunger with the biting cold of winter.  Humans personified Winter as always hungry and taking little tastes of flesh here and there (frostbite) and well TRNSHMN nailed it.  I didn't make the connection until now.

An adventure set in post-Katrina is particularly disturbing.

Once the emergency is over, these people still carry the arctic cold in their bellies, ravenous, in agony that only the warmth of living flesh and blood can beat back for a while.

I really like this idea as well. You can sprinkle rumors of vampires or ghouls in game to have the players be slightly misdirected.  Poor saps show up to a gun fight with stakes and crosses ;D

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