[Sorcerer & Sword] Prep Time!

Started by angelfromanotherpin, April 11, 2011, 04:15:19 PM

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Doing Sorcerer again; hopefully it'll last more than a few sessions this time!  We had the first pre-play session last night, and I think it went very well, but I wanted to run the results under some other eyes and ask for ideas to make the whole thing really sing.

The setting is Arabian Nights-inspired but through an over-the-top Heavy Metal lens.  Daring Bedouins, wily viziers, proud caliphs; endless deserts, lush deltas, remote islands; flying cities, enormous birds, mighty djinn.  Outside the great caliphates, there are Varangians from beyond the north wind, fortune-seekers from the Celestial Kingdoms, and spirit-hunters from the utter south.  It's a wide world with wonders to appease all appetites; but it's not safe.

There are four players:
1) Eddie, playing Omar, a man who was found amnesiac in the desert and demonstrated a startling charisma and talent for craftwork; stalked by sinister Thuggee-like cultists who know that he carries within him the reincarnated soul of a fallen god.  Omar learned the truth and awakened the power that slept inside him, but that power came with urges he's very uncomfortable with.  His Kicker is that he's tracked a method of becoming fully divine to a city threatened by infidel invasion. 

2) Paul, playing Qogai, an unruly son of the Great Khan fostered into a martial monastery to learn discipline, who developed forbidden techniques and was cast out when he killed another monk.  Now he seeks some glory he can take back to his father to redeem his failure.  His Kicker is that he has found the greatest craftsman in the world (Omar) and has resolved to take him back to the Great Khan (who especially likes crafters) as a friend if possible, as a prize if need be.

3) Pete, playing Hakim, a rogue assassin and one of the sons of the Old Man of the Mountain.  Hakim went renegade after one of his assignments turned out to be an innocent man, and he had a crisis of conscience; he's been hunted by his siblings ever since.  Hakim's Kicker is that he's discovered another innocent targeted for assassination (Omar, the Thuggee have enlisted the Assassins), and has stopped running to protect this man from his brethren. 

4) Jen, playing Kesi, who is the product of a free peasant father and a djinni mother; though neither Kesi or her father ever knew the truth, only that the mother vanished shortly after Kesi's birth.  Kesi and her father labored in squalor for years, and then he died, and she couldn't maintain the farm alone.  Kesi turned to gambling to try and keep her father's land, and failed.  The farm was seized, and the gambling house's sinister owner (the Old Man of the Mountain) also took her soul and sealed it in a trinket.  Now, with nothing and no-one, she is resolved to get it back.  Her Kicker is that she has heard of a renegade assassin (Hakim), who could be an ally against the Old Man, or a bargaining chip to trade for her soul, and now she has found him.

So, the players have knit together their Kickers without any prodding from me.  That already seems like a really promising set-up for interwoven mayhem.  I do want more, though, especially as regards intertwining their backstories.

Thoughts so far:
a) The Assassins and the Thuggee-like cult should be connected somehow.  Maybe the martial monastery as well.
b) The innocent victim in Hakim's backstory is totally Kesi's father, though who knows it is an open question.
c) The back of Qogai's sheet tells me to focus on his father and the monk Qogai killed.
d) The invading infidels will reach the city earlier than expected, and both the Demons (Qogai's chi powers and Omar's divine nature) have Desires that mean they'll want to stick around for the show.

Any promising connections that I'm not seeing?
-My real name is Jules

"Now that we know how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, how do we determine how many angels are dancing, at a given time, on the head of a given pin?"
"What if angels from another pin engaged them in melee combat?"


My impression is that right now it feels like "good prep for generic game" -- I mean, that looks like the sort of thing you could run in any old game system out there.  So I guess I'd like to see the more specifically-Sorcerer side of things: what is Humanity, what are the Lore descriptors, what Demons are, all that sort of thing.  I suspect that'll be more useful than 'ooh the Grand Khan is the second-cousin his mother's side of the Grand Assassin' or some such.