20 May 2013

CanGames 2013 - The Wrap Up

Amazing weekend at CanGames, managed to re-centre myself while engaging in imaginary chaos and collateral damage.

Friday Evening - Who You Gonna Call?
I preregistered along with signing up as a games master.  However, I never preregistered for any games.  The past few years, I've just gone and signed up a half-hour before the start of the slot.  This method has worked for several years, and kept working this year.  I arrived after work, got my packages, player and GM, the dice (yay!), said hello to many many people, then waited for the sign up sheets.

I lucked out.  The Ghostbusters RPG still had open seats.  I played Ray.  I got to use classic lines from the Ghostbusters movies and even Blues Brothers.  (For the record: "It's five hundred miles to Baltimore.  We have a full tank of gas and half a pack of cigarettes.  It's dark, and I'm wearing an Ecto-Visor.")  We managed to save the world and, more importantly, New York City from a Mayan apocalypse.  Long story.  Museums really shouldn't allow us Ghostbusters inside.  A popular rare bird exhibit had some stuffed samples.  Had.  I personally took out a stuffed bald eagle.

A classic bit, though, one that I could easily see in a Ghostbusters movie, had Louis filming the exploits as a ghost appeared.  All the regular Ghostbusters, Ray, Peter, Winston, and Egon, failed to keep their cool and ran away.  Louis remained there, filming.  "Guys, this is great!  Okay, whenever you're ready.  Guys?  Any time now.  Guys?  Guys?"


Saturday Morning and Saturday Afternoon - Fluxx Capacity
I got convinced earlier in the year to try running something.  I didn't feel up to running a full-on RPG, but figured that a card game or a board game would be simple enough.  To make it simpler, I went with a demo-style approach; no tracking winners, no competition, just a nice simple sit down game.  Thus, Fluxx.  The morning would be drop in, drop out for the players so they could go check on other things happening.  I brought most of my decks, leaving out Stoner Fluxx and Family Fluxx, leaving nine others to swap in and out.  The game went well, with people looking over and sitting in for a hand or two and leaving happy.

The afternoon slot added complexity.  It was billed as the "SuperMegaUber Fluxx with Spam", where all the decks would get added.  I decided at the start of the slot to try just two decks - Star Fluxx and Monty Python Fluxx - to see how it went.  That first game took an hour before a winner emerged.  I never went to the nine hundred card deck; the game would still be going today*.  So, as an experiment, not so good, though the lesson is learned.  If I were to run Fluxx again next year, I'd want to get set up as a demo table on the main game floor so people could drop in and drop out as needed, without being a scheduled event.

Satuday Evening - Four-tailed Investigators
Wrapping up Saturday, I joined a game some friends were registered in, paying for a token to get into the game without having to wait for the sign-up sheet to come out.  First time I've done that.  It paid off, though.  The game, Fox Magic focuses on the story side of role-playing, not the game side.  It took some time for the players to adjust to the paradigm, not being used to the greater freedom Fox Magic provides.  Characters were created at the game; character generation is fast.

The plot involved vengeful ghosts in Nagasaki, Japan.  The core ghost was angry that her life ended so suddenly in 1945, creating a cascade of vengeance and anger through other restless spirits.  The players, all playing fox spirits, had to find out why the city was upset and what could be done to appease the ghosts.  My character, the Den Father due to age**, managed to freeze one of the ghosts with an illusionary prayer strip.  Mind, my character did know about how to properly use that sort of magic, but felt that he didn't have the time to properly set the ritual up.  That gave the other fox spirits time to properly exorcise the ghost.

Again, a fun session.

Sunday Morning - Pulp Fiction
Sunday mornings at CanGames are slow.  It's the third day, games start at 9:00am, and people are tired, especially if they've been gaming since the start of the con Friday afternoon.  This means less competition for a slot in a game.  Made it really easy to get into a Hollow Earth Expedition game.  I wound up playing Umberto Diaz, the director of a series of films starring Katrina Ananova as Cassandra Trimble, an adventuress who finds herself drawn into trouble.  The intrepid group started on Mount St. Helens in media res as the volcano erupted.  Umberto got all sorts of amazing footage as his actors leapt over streams of lava, including a rescue of the leading lady.  From there, wolves, Nazis, and a waterfall all appeared as kids were rescued on camera and a Nazi plot unravelled by us meddling film crew.  Of note, a fight began after Umberto got his camera set up and him saying "Action!"

The group escaped the volcano through a cave system and diving into a deep pool of water that turned into a long underwater waterfall that led to a jungle and the climactic fight against a Tyrannosaurus Rex that ended with an explosion.  Michael Bay, eat your heart out.  Now, Umberto just has to get back to the studio, cut and edit the raw footage, and wait for the Oscars and, most importantly, the cash to roll in.

In short, fun weekend.

Each CanGames has a theme; this year's was "Apocalypse Missed", based on all the End of the World predictions over the past year failed to cause a mild earthquake.  Next year's theme has been announced - "Crossroads".  Ideas have entered my head, using one of Supernatural, Demon Hunters, or Buffy RPGs.  I have plenty of time, almost a full year, to work on the concepts in my head, and I have concepts already for the games.  The mashing should be interesting.

See you there next year!

* Today being the day you're reading this, not when I posted this.
** I am old.

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