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Author Topic: [MLwM] My Life as Adolf  (Read 8130 times)
Victor Gijsbers
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« on: May 31, 2005, 06:58:38 AM »

Last weekend, I went to a meeting of the Dutch/Flemish RPG-forum Mandragon. I led a game of My Life with Master for four people, none of whom had ever played it before, or met me in person. All of them were between 22 and 28 years old, and had years of experience with roleplaying games. A quick overview of the players:

The players

Jeroen is the GameMaster of a very narrativistic Nobilis game I'm playing online at Mandragon. He has a stated interest in Nar Indie-RPGs, and has read around on The Forge. However, I think this was the first time he actually played a Forge game.

Remko is a player in the same Nobilis game. He too has expressed interest in Narrativism, and has recently ordered Sorcerer. However, his experience is mainly with WoD and D&D; this was his first time playing a Forge game.

Rimke has been playing Das Schwarze Auge for a very long time, with little experience of other RPGs. However, he was intrigued by my entry of My Life with Master in the game catalogue at Mandragon, and went as far as reading most of the inactive MLwM-development forum here at The Forge.

The unexpected fourth player was Koen, who's favourite RPG is Alternity, and who also had some D&D experience. Because there were no players for the Alternity game he was planning to run, he came and joined us, knowing absolutely nothing about what to expect.


My preparation

Minimal, of course. I had created a 2-page handout which detailed all the rolls, as well as the condition for The Horror Revealed, Capture and Endgame, and a description of the three bonus dice. I had enough character sheets. I had reread the rules and read the 'Manifesto on Mastery'. My previous experience consisted of one 4-session run and an aborted forum-based game.

I also forgot all my dice, but this was not a problem.


Creating the Master

After explaining in a few sentences the basic idea of the game - as far as 'theme' and 'genre' were concerned - I said that we would first create a Master. "He is cruel and callous, he wants something, and he needs the minions to get it. The standard setting is central Europe around 1800 with the Master living in a crumbling castle, but I've also played a Soviet scientist in a part of Siberia where there had been too many above-ground nuclear tests. What would you like?"

This was enough: the imagination of the group started firing immediately, and it was quickly decided that the Master was a nazi-scientist trying to clone Hitler. This was later specified to a scientist living in South America who had already cloned Hitler, and was trying to raise the now 12 year old boy into the leader of the Fourth Reich. In order to give young Adolf the right education, the Master had built a small military camp with a Hitler Jugend of now 10-year old children (for Adolf to command), and a mini-concentration camp where Adolf could learn racial hate. (Indians and other dark-skinned people being those to be hated.) Of course, Adolf actually is a tender-hearted and shy boy, making the Master's task quite hard.

Rather scary, politically very incorrect, but the perfect background for a game. All I had to do was insist on getting a list of Needs of the Master. He needed people to serve him as slave labour and prisoners, he needed his slaves and SS Jugend drilled, he needed people to teach Adolf lessons of hate, and he needed people to intimidate the local population. I also said "Surely, one of you is going to play Adolf as a minion?", at which point some of the players looked rather taken aback, but then everybody quickly agreed that this was a fitting idea.

About 20 minutes in the game, we had a Master and a setting. Everybody had been involved in the discussion from the start, although I think Koen was wondering what all of this could possibly lead up to.


Creating the Minions

Once again, a few sentences describing what the things on the character sheet meant and the statement that "you should consider this a group process" were enough. The players intuitively grasped the idea that each of the minions has some special set of tasks the Master needs him for - an insight I myself had not yet gained - and made sure there was not too much overlap between these tasks. People helped each other out when they were having difficulty thinking up a More or Less Than Human or a Connection. At my suggestion, two of the connections got a mother-daughter relation. One of the connections was a little girl named Eva Braun, selected by the Master to be Adolf's future bride. After about 25 minutes, we had the following minions:

Reinhart Gewürze (Jeroen)

Teacher of German and Hate, for the Hitler Jugend, Adolf and Eva. He has a muscle disease which binds him to his wheelchair, unless it rains - then he can walk. Het has a very, very loud voice, unless there are grown-ups around. Reinhardt believes that Hate is the fundamental concept of life, but cannot repress the feelings of love he feels for his own bastard son Alfonso (a spoiled brat), and the young Eva Braun (his best student of German). Because of this weakness, he hates himself. (Selfloathing 3.)

Enrice (Koen)

Enrice (the Master calls him 'Heinrich') is destined to become the boss of the SS in the Fourth Reich, but must content himself until then with leading the Hilter Jugend, especially as far as their physical and military training is concerned. He also commands the little concentration camp, and is sent by the Master to kidnap people from the village. It is in his powers to win any close combat fight using an obscure Indonesian form of martial arts, unless he has drunk alcohol. He cannot show tenderness, unless there is a teddy bear around. His great love is the indian woman Maria, who lives in the village with her daughter Frederica. He is also friendly with the villages doctor, with whom he likes to play Bridge.

Leonardth Niene (Remko)

Is the Master's expert in torture and 'subtle' intimidation. Must ensure that the Master's camp is run in a brutal and merciless way, in order to instill the young Adolf with the right ideal of Hate. However, Leonardth is really a very emotional guy, who much prefers hanging out in the village bar over the doing of grissly deeds. He is an expert torturer, unless the one to be tortured is one of his own connections. He has trouble with knowing what to say in a conversation, unless he has been drinking alcohol. His only friend is the village barkeep Pedro, and he also likes to keep an eye out for the weakest boy of the Hitler Jugend, little Pablo.

Adolf Hitler (Rimke)

Is a 12 year old clone, destined by the Master ('Vati') to lead the Fourth Reich. The Master does all he can to raise him as a hateful, vengeful person by banning all love from his life. Unfortunately for his plans, the camp's cook (named 'Muti' by the young Adolf, but only where the Master can't hear it) gives him the love he craves. She listens to his troubles, consoles him, and now and then gives him sweets. There is also a young girl in the village, Frederica, for whom Adolf feels the first beginnings of 'being in love', although he doesn't know how to interpret these. This Frederica is an indian, and hence what Master would call an Untermensch. In addition to that, Adolf is meant to marry Eva Braun, whom he doesn't like at all. Adolf cannot get anyone to obey him unless the Master is present. He can fake complete indifference to human suffering, unless the sufferer is one of his connections.

An interesting set of characters, I thought. After we had created them, I explained the rules in about 10 minutes.


15 minute pause

A crucial phase of the game was the 15 minute pause following the preparatory stages. While my players went to get some food (it was a little over 2 'o clock by that time), I sat down and wrote down three tasks for every minion. My main concern was to make sure that every single connection was the central figure of one of these tasks. The specific roles of each of the minions was also a great help, and some of the tasks were inspired by the minion's MtHs and LtHs. (Not as many as would have been ideal, but there really wasn't enough time for that.)

This list ensured that I never got stuck during the game. Somebody asks for a new command? Just look in your notebook, and everything will be all right. I didn't even need all the tasks, as new ones sometimes naturally followed from the events of the game. And all the connections came into play through these tasks, ensuring that they were really part of the story. I feel quite confident that without this short time of solitary preparation, I would have been a much less effective GM during the game.


I'll write up a summary of and reflection on the game as soon as possible, maybe tonight. Let me just say at this point that it was a huge success.
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Remko
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« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2005, 08:27:54 AM »

Pretty accurate description, I might say. My introduction with the Forge was by Victor due to his signature at mandragon, which wasn't too long ago, so you could say I hadn't played any game like My Life, with the exception of the Online RPG of Nobilis, but Onlines are still different from other RPG's.

It was a real cool game (thanks Victor, another time for your great performance).

BTW: it's a Hollyhock God :).
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Remko van der Pluijm

Working on:
1. Soviet Soviet Politics, my November Ronnie
2. Sorcerer based on Mars Volta's concept album 'Deloused in the Comatorium'
Tobias
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« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2005, 09:22:39 AM »

Sounds good.

Did the mood stay in the 'icky creepy but not really real' area, or did it become much more gritty?

Why haven't we played yet? I live in Amersfoort, nowadays.
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Tobias op den Brouw

- DitV misses dead gods in Augurann
- My GroupDesign .pdf.
Jeroen
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« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2005, 10:35:54 AM »

Well, obviously, the most icky-creepy part was the roomful of CCG-players staring at us like we were some local fascist chapterhouse. ;)

Aside from that, yes, it was icky-creepy in a way. Especially the turn at the end where little Adolf² is forced by the master to kill Frederica after which suddenly he truly turns to evil. It was like he went "finally I'm worthy" and embraced all of Master's teachings. The fact that it came together beautifully with Reinhart's change of heart for the better was a nice piece timing.
Did you manipulate the scenes Victor in order to have it match up that way or did we just get lucky?

Quote
Did the mood stay in the 'icky creepy but not really real' area, or did it become much more gritty?


It certainly was larger than life. I mean, we had this whole "hate"-thing going which was quite over the top. I don't know if that would have worked for a longer game.
But perhaps my memory of the game is slightly skewed, because Reinhart's assignments and the choices he had to make weren't perhaps as gritty as those of the other characters (especially Adolf²'s).

The game was a blast. One of the best games I've played in.
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Remko
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« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2005, 11:31:49 AM »

Quote from: Jeroen
Well, obviously, the most icky-creepy part was the roomful of CCG-players staring at us like we were some local fascist chapterhouse. ;)


Could you expect less with Victor yelling at the players how weak we were and how we destroyed the opportunity for ein vierter Reich?

@ Tobias: Victor lives in Utrecht, so that's not too far away from you, was it?

BTW, we came together, as Victor mentioned, by a Dutch / Flemish RPG-site, mandragon.be.
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Remko van der Pluijm

Working on:
1. Soviet Soviet Politics, my November Ronnie
2. Sorcerer based on Mars Volta's concept album 'Deloused in the Comatorium'
Victor Gijsbers
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« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2005, 12:29:23 PM »

Quote from: Tobias
Why haven't we played yet? I live in Amersfoort, nowadays.
I don't know. It's a shame. Let us mend our ways - I'll send you a message.

Jeroen, I certainly did not manipulate the scenes nor do I know how to do so. Although I do think the 'Adolf finally embraces Hate' idea was suggested by me, after Rimke realised that if the cook were to die his love would go to zero and he would become a new Master. Let's say that we were inspired by the rules.

Now, to typing the rest of this actual play report...
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Remko
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« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2005, 01:11:46 PM »

Quote from: Victor Gijsbers
Although I do think the 'Adolf finally embraces Hate' idea was suggested by me, after Rimke realised that if the cook were to die his love would go to zero and he would become a new Master. Let's say that we were inspired by the rules.


Rimke mentioned this was his only choice not to let his character die. He found it a more stylish solution to the problem.
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Remko van der Pluijm

Working on:
1. Soviet Soviet Politics, my November Ronnie
2. Sorcerer based on Mars Volta's concept album 'Deloused in the Comatorium'
Victor Gijsbers
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« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2005, 01:29:00 PM »

Spinning the story

I told everyone that we would start with a round of scenes in which the Master gave commands to the players. After that, it was up to the players to request scenes. This worked very well: we had a nice mix of attempts to carry out the Master's orders and overtures. Towards the end, the number of overtures increased, but this was partly due to my encouragement as we were running out of time and did not seem inappropriate. The whole game, by the way, took a little less than 5 hours, including two pauses. Fear was 3, Reason 2, and everybody started with 1 point of Love.

I'll give you a tale of each of the minions/players, then zoom in on some memorable scenes and events.


Reinhardt, the German/Hate teacher was masterfully played by Jeroen. Yes, that sentence is intentionally ambiguous. The characterisation was brilliant, with Reinhardt having a distinct manner of very careful speech, an ironic blindness to his own failure as parent of Alfonso and a very recognisable and vivid personality. I was impressed, and tempted to conclude that 'experienced roleplayer' can be a honorific. On the other hand, Reinhardt wasn't all that tragic - he bore the horror of the Master with stoicism and indifference rather than with anguish and pathos. (I'm exaggerating, of course.) This may have been a slight weakness of the character, but then again - we were having fun, not making perfect art.

The Master told Reinhardt that he was very proud of him, and the discipline he instilled into the Hitler Jugend. But everyone ought to be disciplined - including Reinhardt's son Alfonso, a spoiled sissy. "But he will not survive the harsh training!" "Reinhardt, we both know which of discipline and survival is more important." So Reinhardt agreed to take Alfonso to Enrice, and have him submit to his harsh regime. This scene was a gem of improvisational characterisation, even if it may have lacked somewhat in tragic import. Later, Reinhardt made an overture to Alfonso, who had escaped Enrice's supervision and was drinking tequila in a quite nook. "I am very proud of you, son," Reinhardt told him and rewarded him for his endurance.

The mayor of the village was not submissive enough, to the Master's taste, so Reinhardt was ordered to take some of the Jugend and beat him up. (The mayor was at that time a 0 love connection of Enrice.) This quickly escalated into a firefight, and Reinhardt order the Jugend to kill the mayor and his poker friends. (Enrice's player chose the new mayor as a new connection; he was the doctor, as detailed above.)

Reinhardt made several overtures to Eva Braun, his best pupil, who was hard at work reading Faust. He promised to take her away on a white horse, away from the Master's dominion; where she would not have to marry the despised Adolf, and would not have to bleach her hair every day. (As she was no natural blonde.) Of course, the Master later order Reinhardt to ensure that Eva loved Adolf, because he would not have his plan go awry on that account. Reinhardt promised her that if she kissed Adolf just once, tonight, he would then take her away to freedom. We'll get back to that as I describe the final scenes.


Enrice, played by Koen, was certainly the most despicable minion. His tale started out with a lot of emotional power. He was ordered to kidnap Frederica, the daughter of the woman he was in love with, Maria. I framed him into a scene where he met Maria in front of the house, while Frederica was playing in the backyard; but he asked me to reframe it such that he approached from the back. Proactive GM-correction in the first real scene of a player new to this kind of game - good! Frederica knew and trusted him, so it was all too easy to kidnap her. Her mother saw him running away and screamed, but he was already too far to be recognised for certain.

Next he made an overture to Maria, who made him swear that he was not the kidnapper, which he did. He than failed hi overture roll, which I - this suddenly struck me as completely natural - interpreted as Maria completely falling for his lie. She made him promise to look for her girl, and thanked him profusely, saying he was her only friend... boy, did his self-loathing go up a point!

Well, next he was ordered to make little Adolf entousiastic about the concentration camp. There was a grissly scene where Enrice encouraged Adolf to beat an indian all bloody, which he actually quite enjoyed. However, an event to which I will return later then distracted Adolf.

From this point onwards, Enrice became really despicable, as he made overtures to his friend the doctor, who turned out to be quite the racist himself and gave Enrice and the Hitler Jugend 'carte blanche' concerning the indians. Three Horror Revealed scenes, two narrated by Jeroen and one by Koen, had already set the stakes of the internal racial struggles in the village pretty high, with murders both ways. Enrice then took a bunch of SS Jugend members and enthousiastically killed an entire small village of indians somewhere outside the main village. The Master had no hand in this. (At least not directly!) Triumphantly returning to the village, the people were not as happy as their mayor, and only Enrice's martial arts skills saved him from an attack by several angry inhabitants.


Leonardt was the minion most craving for love, and most capable of friendship. His relation with the barkeep Pedro was played out over quite some overtures, and was the strongest minion-connection bond in the game. His first task was to threaten the cook, in order to ensure that she would give Adolf no more sweets. He did this in a rather scary way which involved a knife and a drop of blood he theatrically swallowed. Unfortunately for the cook, Adolf made an overture to her afterwards and she again consoled him and gave him a cake. So when Leonardt returned from his overture to Pedro, where he had also thrown little Adolf out of the bar, has was first berated by Master for interfereing with Adolf's taks, and secondly order to publicly punish the cook. This punishment involved the SS Jugend stoning her and Leonardt making a very lagre cut across her face, a scene that made me feel a bit (a very tiny bit) unwell. (This was the distraction I mentioned above.)

After another overture to Pedro, Leonardt returned only to find that Master wanted him to kill Pedro. (In order to save Frederica, Adolf had invented a lie about the barkeep wanting to kill the Master. Yes, by this time the players were making each other's lives so difficult that I hardly had to do a thing.) Leonardt first made an overture to Pedro, telling him to flee - after Pedro had done so, he nevertheless felt compelled to send out a troup of SS Jugend with dogs to track him down and kill him. (This rolled a tie, so...) He than found that Pedro had fled to Leonardt's own chambers in the Master's building. "I couldn't leave my village!" "But you must, the Master will kill you!" "If that is so, then I must try to kill him" - and with a knife in his hand and Leonardt trailing him, Pedro set out to kill the Master.


Adolf was certainly the most tragic of the minions. Also brilliantly characterised, he rolled failure after failure. His first task was to take command of a squad of Jugend members and make the barkeep give him a crate of whisky. But he coudln't command, he was too shy and indecisive, and failed miserably - even on a second attempt, with a gun in his hand, when Leonardt threw him out of the bar. Chastised by the Master, he was then ordered to beat up a helpless Indian (see above), and watch the cook being punished. He did both and the Master was really proud of him. "As a reward," he said, "I'll let you beat up someone more interesting than the old indian. It is a little girl called Frederica."

Ouch. Adolf tried to, but failed and fell down crying. In a fit of extreme rage, the Master ordered him to kill the girl. "But I love her!", he screamed, earning a Sincerity die in the process. Nevertheless - failure. So young Adolf went to the tied up girl, who was pleading for mercy, and slit her throat. The hot blood streamed down his hands.


The final scenes was where it all came together. Adolf had just killed Frederica, when Eva and Reinhardt came towards him so Eva could show him her love by kissing him. But seeing the blood on his hands and realising what a monster he was, Eva fled inside, crying unconsolably. Master burst out in rage against Reinhardt, whom he accused of being an incompetent fool, and he commanded him to kill Eva immediately. Reinhardt resisted, had enough love, and Endgame commenced. By that time, Pedro en Leonardt also emerged from the building.

Meanwhile, Enrice had taken the dead body of Frederica and brought it back to her mother, claiming that he had found it in the indian village he had raided! She believed him, and prepared the girl for burial, laying a teddy bear in her arms. Thawing immediately, Enrice laid his arm around her, anfd together they buried the girl.

Rimke realised at this point that he would be killed, unless the cook were to die, leaving him 0 love and making him a new Master. "Why don't you kill the cook yourself?", I ventured. So, Adolf, suddenly understanding the real source of his weakness, took a gun and went to the kitchen. "I have found the source of my weakness!", he screamed. "It is you! I will kill you, and become the new leader of the Fourth Reich!" With, again, a Sincerity die, he, again, failed - Muti threw a large pan full of hot soup over him and escaped.

Then, Reinhardt shot Master, while Pedro stuck a knife in him. The SS Jugend, commanded by Enrice did nothing to save him.


Epilogues

Enrice married Maria and lived happily ever after. They had four kids and lots of teddy bears. He did not ever tell her the truth.

Reinhardt went with Alfonso and Eva to live somewhere in the rainforest.

Leonardt became the co-proprietor of the local bar.

Adolf, covered with soup, was shot by the Hilter Jugend as soon as he emerged from the building.
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Victor Gijsbers
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« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2005, 01:37:32 PM »

Reflections

1. All the players were very involved. As you can see, the tales of the characters really intertwined, mostly because they had to do things with each other's connections. I cannot recommend this techinque too highly. Also, family or other ties between connections are very, very good.

2. I actively encouraged the players to strive for bonus dice, and they did this quite often. I guess I gave a bonus die once in every three rolls. However, these requests never felt artificial. People naturally feel when it is and when it is not appropriate to ask for a certain die.

3. The Master never became more than a booming voice giving cruel commands. (Presenting Adolf the whipping of Frederica as a reward was, if I may congratulate myself, my evil master stroke of the game.) He was not a character. I have no idea what he looked like. I am not sure whether this made him less or more fearsome, and would like to hear this from my players.

4. The most non-intuitive aspect of the game seems to be The Horror Revealed, but after two scenes people get the hang of it. And then it really rocks, as the players produce nasty events - to the horror of all. Indeed, lots of nasty events were produced that did not originate from the GMs head, and that is good.

5. Not all the minions were really tragic characters, but this was no real problem for a fast-paced one-shot game.

I believe I wanted to say some more things, but I can't think of them right now.

Conclusion

I have to believe that My Life with Master was designed for one-shots, even though I know it is not the case. The game rocked. As you can see above, the response was very positive. Paul, thank you.
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Jeroen
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« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2005, 11:36:27 PM »

Quote
2. I actively encouraged the players to strive for bonus dice, and they did this quite often. I guess I gave a bonus die once in every three rolls. However, these requests never felt artificial. People naturally feel when it is and when it is not appropriate to ask for a certain die.

Actually, I didn't completely get this until the very end (after the final overture with Eva). I thought you just had to role-play stuff and the master would decide which die you'd get, rather than having you ask for a die and then portray that through role-play.

Quote
He was not a character. I have no idea what he looked like. I am not sure whether this made him less or more fearsome, and would like to hear this from my players.

He worked fine for a one shot. But a clearer motivation and a more poignant background would have been nice.

Quote
Not all the minions were really tragic characters, but this was no real problem for a fast-paced one-shot game.

Well, I think the Reinhart had the potential for tragedy. But as it was such a short game his change of heart felt rather superficial. It sort of felt logical though, with him seeing Alfonso and Eva suffer for a lost cause. Add the fact that his missions were rather easy compared to those of the other characters. I can't remember failing a single die-roll either.

And Adolfchen rocked. Rimke did a great job with the character. I think everyone rooted for him to finally stand up and defeat the master by himself. I know I did.
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Rimke
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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2005, 03:47:54 AM »

I'll post the story of my minion and my thoughts afterwards if I have the time to write it all down.
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Rimke
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« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2005, 03:52:32 AM »

Adolf  (a 12 year old clone of the real Adolf Hitler) was a truly tragic character. I don’t think a single thing went his way.
It started when he was ordered by the master (who he calls ‘Vati’) to rob the local bar and get some bottles of whisky. His LtH being that he is unable to give orders unless the master is around, made this an impossible task. The Jugend he had brought along just stood there and did nothing, the barkeeper was not in the least intimidated by Adolf. He ended up getting thrown out of the bar. That’s where his hatred of the barkeeper began.

A few scenes later Adolf ended up being forced to watch Leonardt torture his “Muti”. He was then able to talk the master into a raid on the local bar to teach the barkeeper a lesson (by inventing a story how the barkeeper had insulted the master). This would be a great way to punish the bartender for the humiliation Adolf had suffered by him and at the same time get even with Leonardt, because he knew the barkeeper was Leonardt’s best friend. Again the barkeeper refused to follow Adolf’s orders and feeling very frustrated and angry Adolf decided to kill the poor guy, but of course just at that very moment Leonardt walked in and managed to stop him.

Returning to the camp he discovered that the Master had captured Frederica, the girl that made his heart grow soft and gave him funny feelings in his belly. In a moving scene he promised never to hurt her and to help her escape. A promise he wasn’t able to keep, as you shall see. Because just after that the master decided that it would be a great lesson in ‘hatred’ for Adolf to give the girl a flogging. Unable to resist the strong will of the master he tried, but Frederica begging him not to do it was too much for him.  Not being able to even raise the whip he broke down on the ground in a pathetic crying fit. The master, now being furious with anger, then ordered Adolf to kill her. Again Adolf tried to resist, poring his whole soul into the argument this time. He told the master in a trembling but determent voice how he felt. How he didn’t want to be the Führer of the 4th Reich, how he was sick of the hatred and torments. How he just wanted to be left alone and go to a far, far away place. His speech would have made a rock weep, but of course the master wasn’t impressed at all. He only grew even more angry. (I think this was the time when Victor shouted at me VERY loudly that ‘I was a disappointment and failure for the 4th Reich, not a real Aryan’ and all the people in the room looked up to stare at us in a very peculiar way…)  It was just too much for young Adolf to handle and his will broke. Wiping the tears from his eyes he took a knife from his belt and slit the throat of the shocked Frederica, getting blood all over him in the act. (This was probably the only violence roll I actually won in the whole game).

This was a turning point in Adolfs life. The master had finally managed to corrupt him. Instead of a pathetic, but in his heart still good boy he turned into a force of evil, though not less pathetic. While the others were busy in a revolt to overthrow the master Adolf went to the kitchen carrying a gun to free himself from the last shred of love that made him still somewhat human and kill the only woman he still loved. Shouting that he had now found the source of his weakness and the reason why he always failed at everything he raised his gun and aimed to kill his ‘Muti’. But faith wasn’t done with poor Adolf and played its final trick.
Saved by a miracle and pure desperation Muti managed to grab a hot pan of soup from the stove, throw it at Adolf and escape.

Now screaming from pain and anger Adolf ran back to the master’s room to find him lying dead at the feet of the other minions. The jugend stood aside now celebrating. Adolf raised his gun to shoot the minions who killed his ‘Vati’, but the sound of multiple shots cracked through the room. Adolf felt down, after being hit from several bullets out of the Jugend’s rifles, who now, being freed from the master, finally had the opportunity to get rid of the boy they hated.

A fitting end for probably the most pathetic dictator-to-be this world has ever seen.
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Rimke
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« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2005, 08:07:24 AM »

My thoughts of the game:


Master creation: I was at first a bit disappointed we didn’t chose a more classic setting, because I like 19th century horror novels. But everybody else was really into the Nazi-master, so I decided to go along. In the beginning I thought it was not going to work, since we had different ideas and most of them were still very vague, but in the end everything fitted nicely.

Character creation: Finding a suitable LtH was far easier than finding a good MtH one IMO.   Only Enrice used his MtH once in a scene, the rest of us didn’t. The LtH was more often used and decided my first scene. The connections were easy to come up with in my case. I think it was a good idea to make Maria and Frederica mother and daughter.

Play: I like how minions quickly connected with each other. Especially Adolf had a lot of scenes with other minions present and vice versa. This made it more interesting to listen to each others scenes. I liked how the system forced everybody to begin playing ‘in the middle of the story’ instead of all those tedious introduction scenes you often encounter in other RPGs. That made it easier for me to get into my role, I was at first a bit worried, the prospect of playing a Hitler-clone with a group of people you have never met before can be a bit daunting. The system forced me to make decisions I hadn’t thought of before, making the vague character I had in my head at the start clearer with every scene. This happened with all the minions I think.  I chose more assignments from the master as scenes than overtures, resulting (because I failed many violence rolls) in a weariness of 5 and love only 2 at the end. That was fine with me because Adolf wasn’t a character designed to live happily ever after in my view.

I don’t understand what happens when the roll is a tie. It helped getting Pedro of the hook, but how that happened was not quite clear to me.

Because the Master had big plans with Adolf, my minion was in a lot of scenes which was fun for me. Did that bother you guys? I think that usually the interest of the Master is more equally devided among the minions.
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Borogove
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Posts: 6


« Reply #13 on: June 01, 2005, 08:45:57 PM »

Quote
Next he made an overture to Maria, who made him swear that he was not the kidnapper, which he did. He than failed hi overture roll, which I - this suddenly struck me as completely natural - interpreted as Maria completely falling for his lie. She made him promise to look for her girl, and thanked him profusely, saying he was her only friend... boy, did his self-loathing go up a point!


That's just brilliant.
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magnae clunes mihi placent, nec possum de hac re mentiri
Michael S. Miller
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Posts: 846


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« Reply #14 on: June 02, 2005, 06:12:53 AM »

It's been an incredibly hectic week at work so I haven't had a chance to say: What an awesome game! Thanks for posting about it! How horrific and tragic. IMO, each and every minion doesn't need to be filled with pathos for the entire tale to be tragic. The ones that embrace the evil, like little Adolf, serve to highlight the more sympathetic ones. Brilliant work!

Victor: Your use of prep time is brilliant and exactly like mine. In a convention game, I usually take a quick five minutes between minion creation and play that I use to mentally think up the first commands. After that, they usually take care of themselves, with the help of the List of Connections (I like to call it the Master's "to-do" list).

Quote from: Rimke
I don’t understand what happens when the roll is a tie. It helped getting Pedro of the hook, but how that happened was not quite clear to me.


When the roll is tied, the scene is interrupted before completion. Neither side really gets what they want, but the minion also doesn't get consequences of the roll.
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