[Steal Away Jordan] Slaves on Recess

Started by James_Nostack, February 01, 2009, 11:45:10 AM

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January 31 was Recess, a mini-con for the Nerd NYC crowed.  Matt "Deliverator" W. was good enough to run Steal Away Jordan, which I'd been curious about for a long time. 

I have two observations about the game / myself:

First, the mechanics seemed really, really favorable to the slaves.  This might be an illusion created by Matt's terrible dice-luck, but with one exception the players clobbered everyone in their path.  We teamed up when it made sense to do so, but no more than in any other game.  I never felt that we were persecuted by the mechanics, and we even commented (facetiously) that being a slave isn't that bad.  Clearly the game seeks to challenge the notion that slaves were nothing but passive victims, but I felt almost too empowered.

Second, I'm ignorant.  I mean, butt-ignorant, about the South and about slavery.  Pretty much my knowledge of this period is from the Uncle Remus stories and Uncle Tom.  Most of the people at the table knew more than me, and one guy knew a lot.  This was pretty intimidating, and I had a hell of a time coming up with attributes and goals because I knew so little.  I ended up playing a fairly stereotypical Old Black Joe, whose goal was to get his granddaughter sold to a better plantation where her parents are.  Thank God I came up with that goal, because the character himself was a jumble of cliches.  If nothing else, the game revealed I probably need to read a lot more about the period.

Oh, and because it needs to be said: we had a very fun and entertaining game about a very grim subject.