Sunday Morning: Motobushido
My second Motobushido game was on Sunday morning, This time I only started out with three players and only had a four hour timeslot. I cut the First Founding and spent more time on questions/links, and in going over the system. Initially because of the small number of players I decided to make the Taicho optional, but I got a fourth player late, and added him in as the Taicho.
The plot for the game was that a new leader had arisen in the land and had sworn to wipe the scourge of the Motobushi from the face of the earth. There had been several major battles between the leader’s forces and the Motobushi, and the Motobushi had lost (again – poor Motobushi). The remnants of several packs, low on resources, had decided to meet at Three Peaks Cavern VIllage (AKA the small town of Shasta Caverns in Northern California) in an attempt to form some sort of coherent plan to defend themselves. Among the packs was the PC’s hated rival pack, the War Pigs.
There were some great ties brought in by the players. One character had killed the Leader’s son here, and had ties to the local daimyo. One character had sworn to kill the local law keeper for the rape and murder of his sister. One character’s grandmother lived in town, and was trying to convince him to settle down. There was a magical shrine to the Kami of 3 Peaks Mountain. The War Pigs showed up and were acting like belligerent and cocky Motobushi, and their leader even stabbed the law keeper (which caused the character who had a vendetta against him to apply a tourniquet, wait for the law keeper to wake up, then untie it so he could watch the life drain from the man’s eyes. DRAMA!) The Taicho eventually dueled the leader of the War Pigs, who was wounded and driven away, and the War Pigs were then given the choice to join the pack or die. Grandma petitioned the Taicho to let the Gyoja of the pack, her grandson, settle down in Three Peaks Cavern Village and tend the shrine to the local Kami. There were portents of impending disaster. Forces of the local Daimyo showed up and were convinced to help defend the town. Then a huge army of the Leader showed up, along with several packs of Motobushi who had sworn allegience. The leader himself rode on a huge motorcycle with a throne mounted on the back, driven by (who else?) the former leader of the War Pigs! The Kusawaki ended the game with a massive duel as she rode headlong into the mass of the leader’s army, eventually crashing her bike into his and killing him (I got an allowance though, so the head of the War Pigs managed to escape). Though bloodied, the pack survived (except for the Kusawaki).
Though I was running on Sunday morning, I found this game to be less tiring and stressful than the one I ran on Friday. Three seemed to be just a bit too few Motobushi to really get pack synergy going, but four really boosted the level of interaction a lot. Based on this and the fact that I found 6 to be too many, my conclusion is that 4-5 is the “sweet spot” for Motobushido participation.
Sunday Afternoon: Robo-Rally
I do not know why I do not own a copy of Roborally. I really should. Our friends Mark and Laura picked up a copy at the flea market of the convention and we sat down and played a quick, one board game.
Roborally is one of those games that is at once ridiculously easy to learn and very difficult to master. In order to be successful you need to be able to bring several skills to bear – the ability to think and plan your moves, since your turn is scripted, the ability to understand the mechanics of what goes when so that you can make use of terrain features and not be killed by them, and the ability to be where your opponents aren’t shooting at you and to convince them to shoot at someone else. Note however that in Roborally your actual fun may be in inverse proportion to your skill. Tooling around the board free and easy is great for capturing flags, but much of the fun and humor of the game derives from watching your robot (or someone else’s robot) get lasered, crushed, smashed, or otherwise destroyed in a brutal and horrific way.
Anyway, I won.
Sunday Evening: Omega Zone
we had an hour to kill on Friday evening so I agreed to run a quick game of Omega Zone. The nice thing about this FATE Accelerated game is that character creation comes down to a few card draws and you are done, so there is plenty of time in an hour to create characters and still run a quick adventure. In truth I was tired and in that “exhausted yet wacky” end-of-convention space, so I really don’t remember much about the game except that it involved a jelly blob felid, a brain in a tank, and some others trying to stop a K’reen war bot in the shape of a giant Bob’s Big Boy statue from flattening their neighborhood. Stupid K’reen.
It was a quick, fun adventure and I think everyone had fun – and if they didn’t, don’t tell me because I want to remember the convention ending on an up note!
So that’s a quick overview of Dragonflight. It was a great convention. Thanks to all the hard working staff who made it possible!