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Elfs rocks

Started by ampetry17, November 23, 2010, 03:13:42 PM

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I ran a pick-up game last Memorial Day weekend at Marcon (Multiple Alternative Realities Convention) in Columbus, OH. It was a huge hit. I had my gaming group who were with me, along with my wife (who generally doesn't play RPGs), one of our group's sons, and a random guy who just saw we were playing something and wanted to join in. I dropped the stage rules (mostly because I didn't want to have a conversation about the genital stage with my friend's 9 year old son), and we went to town. Everyone, from the old hands to the the kid had a blast. Tim, the kid, picked up on the cartoon aspects of the game immediately. Everyone seemed to get the general rules, including the dumb luck mechanic. Low cunning seemed slightly more popular for most of them, although both Tim and my wife (relatively kind hearted, at least, compared to the other reprobates at the table) preferred dumb luck.

Best of all was that everyone was very interested in actively shaping the story. I started them out with the classic "You stand at the walls of the mage's tower, and start to prepare for your climb." When one of the players said, "Wait, why are we climbing?" I answered, "Good question. Why do you think you'd be climbing up the wall of a mage's tower?" Immediately, he grinned, and said, "The LOOT!" Another said, "Yeah, we've got debts to pay!" And so it was that the infamous Don Rotoli, predatory money lender, was born. The apex of the evening was when they elfs, confronted with a "No Elfs Allowed" sign in a tavern, decided to do the "little kids in a giant trench coat = an adult" disguise. Unfortunately, since one of them had a magic, everlasting stink-bomb (which he found in the mage's tower) with him in the giant cloak, they were gagging, retching, and choking as they tried to get information from the barkeep. Eventually, the two elfs that were the legs failed the Spunk roll I mandated to keep from vomiting, and suddenly, the Mysterious Stranger had all sorts of strange, biological functions to answer for as he dropped to his knees, and horrible sounds and fluids erupted from beneath his cloak. Needless to say, the nine year old thought this was the best thing ever.

It was such a success that I'm signed up to run 2 games next Marcon, one a traditional run, the other is entitled "Elfs: the Steampunkening" to match the theme of the convention this year. Since I was the first to sign up to run games, apparently, I even get prizes to hand out. If that doesn't motivate the players to be devious little back-stabbers, I don't know what will.

Ron Edwards

Yay! Thanks for posting. (Disclosure: this started as an email exchange and I asked the guy to post.)

I'm a bit bummed about the Stages, although I do see your point. If you want, you could use Lawful, Chaotic, and Neutral; or maybe Good, Evil, and Neutral, as a substitute. The tattling rule is really a lot of fun.

Were there any memorable Dumb Luck narrations?

Best, Ron