Posted on : 03-06-2011 | By : Brian | In : Indie Games, Session Reports
Tags: DresdenFilesRPG, FATE, rpg
Later, in a cafe around the corner from Independence Mall called Neutral Grounds, PJ and Percy compared notes after a tacit truce (there was tension between them stemming from PJ’s romantic feelings toward Debra and Percy’s protective feelings toward her). Between the two of them, they had found out that more than twenty people had disappeared from in and around the Mall, and six of those had been found again, as corpses. In addition, of those twenty plus, four of them had been police officers, one of them a member of the Thin Blue Line, the mayor’s unofficial task force for dealing with supernatural threats.
Percy also asked PJ for information on the biker war going on in the city; PJ told him that the best place (though not the safest place) to look would be a bar outside the city in New Hope called the Alomeda Bomb Range, the hangout for the Warlocks biker gang.
Meanwhile, Boop-Boop went back to Bartram Gardens and met with her mistress Lily, the Summer Lady. Boop-Boop informed Lily that something was killing people in the city, and that it was likely vampires of the Black Court. Lily agreed, and told Boop-Boop that they were likely after something in the park.
Boop-Boop then called upon a contact of hers, Grendel, a shape-shifting raven. Grendel told her that there were actually more people missing as a result of the Black Court than anyone realized, and that he suspected what they were after. He agreeed to take Boop-Boop inside the building in Independence Mall, which he did shape-shifted as a police officer. Inside, he took her to the Liberty Bell, which he explained was a powerful magical artifact. Its power was held in check by the fact that it was broken, but if it were repaired, it could grant vast supernatural power to the one who did it.
Later that night, Percy and Debra met for dinner and discussed the day’s goings on, as well as whether or not Debra had any feelings toward PJ.
Meanwhile, PJ girded himself against the Black Court and when to Independence Mall to stake it out. Boop-Boop, at the same time, was scrying around the city, trying to find the Black Court hideout. She found a vampire walking down the street; it became mist a block away from the park and glided gently in, reforming out of sight of the police. Boop-Boop also saw PJ there. She immediately flew as fast as she could toward Independence Mall.
PJ watched as the Black Court vampire approached a homeless man sleeping on a bench, bent over to him for a moment, then straightened. The homeless man stood up and started walking out of the park. PJ decided to follow him.
Boop-Boop also saw this as she arrived. The vampire, she saw, was now heading toward a policeman on patrol. Acting quickly, she flew down to the police officer, lowered her veils, and shouted, “RUN!” The police man ran, Boop-Boop on his tail, and the vampire following quickly behind. Boop-Boop told the man to get to a public place, then to radio to the others in the park and tell them to be on guard, and to stay together. Once the police officer was safely out of the park, she flew up into a tree and, exhausted, fell asleep.
At midnight, Percy met a contact of his, Maximillian, at Babylon, the night club center of power for the vampires of the White Court in the city. Maximillian appeared as a tall, thin black man with vertically-slitted pupils; this was not his true form, however. In his true form, he appeared as a black cat.
Percy asked Maximillian what he knew about the Black Court in town, and Maximillian told him that they were building strength for an attack on Independence Mall, likely to perform some sort of ritual on the Bell. That, he told Percy, would not be good.
My preparation for DFRPG was considerably different from what I was used to. In D&D, you prepare discrete encounters, usually focusing on combat. This can sometimes make combat the focus of the actual game, as you don’t want to let all that time you spent prepping encounters go to waste.
In DFRPG, I used a different tactic. I statted up all of the NPCs that were likely to come into play, as well as some faceless mooks, and I came up with three situations that were going on in the city. Then I let the players discover what was going on, and allowed them to guide the story in the direction they found most interesting. That happened to be my Black Court storyline, though some focus was also given to the war between the Warlocks and the Pagans.
I deliberately left these storylines entirely skeletal, so that the the players and I could fill in the blanks through play. I knew that I could probably have come up with some pretty cool stuff ahead of time, but I also knew that the players would likely come up with a lot of awesome stuff, too, and I decided to capitalize on that. It worked out pretty well.