Sunday, February 10, 2008

Loosing my gaming rants onto the world

You have found my little corner of the web, where I talk about one of the most important things in the world to me: games.

I am a major fan of games, including both board games and role-playing games.

So here is where I shall talk about it.

First, let me introduce myself. I'm the Game Dork. Hi. Nice to meet you.

Now, for my first post, I'm going to talk about something that I've wanted to try for a while now, and haven't really got the chance to do: chronicle play.

Chronicle play is when you create a starting level character (1st level for D&D, or whatever), and play that character continuously in the same group of players with the same characters for years, until he becomes a truly advanced character.Don't get me wrong; I like sampling. It's nice to be able to play a different character every week, jumping around between systems and settings, getting a little experience with everything. But sometimes, I think it'd be nice to actually do something with those experience points I earn. It's a little annoying to go through a campaign with a beginning level character, and just as the character is starting to get powerful enough to consider something more than a fledgling neophyte (I know that phrase is redundant, but I don't care), the game ends and it's time to write up a new character in a new system for a new game in a new background setting.

Just once, it'd be nice to have a character that I've played long enough that I really know him (or her) very well. A character that has lots of actual stories. A character who's been around long enough to be fairly powerful.

I've known lots of people who've talked fondly about their level 97 fighter/mage/thief with a +27 vorpal sword of ogre slaying and giant decapitation, that can cast 63 level 15 spells per day and has a THAC0 of -34 with a +117 damage sneak attack.

Why can I never get that?

I've come close twice: once, back when Werewolf: The Apocalypse was new, I wrote up a Silent Strider theurge named Michelle. For a few months, whenever we played Werewolf, Michelle was the character I played. It wasn't a continuous campaign, and it wasn't with a set group of players, but after about a year, I was able to get her up to Rank 2. Then never had the chance to play her again.

The second time was when I ran a Changeling: The Dreaming game for a few of my friends. I told them at the beginning that I wanted to have a long-running campaign, and we'd game until we got sick of it. I ran four adventures, with one break to play a tylenol game (more on this in a later post). One of the players wasn't a fan of Changeling, so I allowed him to play a hsien, one of the Asian counterparts to the changelings. This fit in well with the theme, since the first game was inspired in part by Big Trouble in Little China. His character had followed the antagonist from China to San Francisco to seek revenge for the destruction of his village. The second story led the players to China, following the hsien as he attempted to put things in order to relocate to San Francisco permanently, and they got caught up in an affair that was taking place in a town there. By the end of the second story, the players were talking about some grandiose plans they had for their little group. So I decided to test their loyalty: the third story was all a series of interactions with NPCs that were designed to tempt the characters to leave the PC group. Of course, none of them did. The fourth story was to be a trip to Ireland... and right in the middle of the story, the group collapsed. The players started telling me things like "I didn't expect the game to last this long."

Which I thought was odd, because I thought I had stated that as one of the reasons for running the game in the first place.

Anyway, so I didn't get to continue the chronicle. I would really like to try again someday.

So that's my rant for today. Check back often; I'll probably update this weekly. And each week, I will sign off with my traditional farewell:

Game on!

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