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[Marvel RPG] A Tale of Two Worlds

jdarksunjdarksun Scion of ChaosRegistered User regular
edited August 2012 in Critical Failures

Next door, I hear something shatter. Maybe a glass or a plate. It doesn’t matter, because I already know what’s coming next. The sound of a fist striking flesh, muffled sobbing. These things you never forget. I call the cops, again, but I already know what they’ll say. The dispatcher knows me; she sighs as I report, for the fifth time, that my neighbor is beating his wife. The dispatcher explains that there’s nothing that they can do if the wife won’t press charges, that they’ve given her the information for nearby battered women’s shelters - as if an overcrowded, underfunded shelter is somehow more appealing than a black eye - and that the police are busy with other cases right now, but they’ll investigate as soon as they have someone to spare. I hang up.

My apartment is briefly washed in red and blue light as two cop cars scream past. Not coming here, not investigating this crime. Maybe some rich kid lost his cat. It’s an uncharitable thought, but I have trouble looking on the bright side of things when I can hear a woman crying and no one will do anything.

There’s a wrecking bar on my kitchen table. I brought it home from the site; I wasn’t supposed to. I did anyway. The piece of curved metal seems to dwarf everything else in the room. When I go to lift it, I think it won’t budge, that my arm will tear off at the shoulder instead of lifting the bar. But it’s as light as a three foot piece of steel can be. I think it will pull me through the floor, but it doesn’t. I hang it on the back of my belt, and exit my apartment.

A woman answers the door a few moments after I knock. She’s looking down, head turned profile, hair covering the far side of her face. If you didn’t know to look for it, it’d be hard to see the fresh bruise, but the old ones are more apparent. There’s a slight flicker of surprise across her face; obviously she was expecting the cops. “Can I help you?”

My heart stops. My lungs seize. My mouth goes dry. Then she turns her head to look at me full on, and I see the patch of blood spread across the white of her left eye. My voice comes out steady, strong, and pitched at a whisper.

“Can I help you?”

The first world is one much like our own, as seen through a dark mirror; it is a world that has all our problems, only more so. Corruption, crime, and poverty are already prolific, and are growing worse every day. Nearly everyone has lost someone they loved to violence, or knows someone who has. Stressed regions in our world are in open conflict in theirs; open conflict here has raged for decades there. If there was one world that needed heroes, this would be it. But there are no radioactive spiders, no eccentric billionaires, no x-gene. There are only criminals, victims, and the very lucky who avoid becoming one or both.

Even so, the human spirit endures, and people find a way to survive. This world has not yet abandoned all hope.

You are among those that endure. Maybe you were born into a fortunate family. Maybe sheer determination has brought you this far. Or, perhaps, luck alone has seen you through. Whatever the reason, not only have you survived where others have fallen, but you also have built a close network of family and friends. And it is with this group that you find yourself planning a little getaway, a vacation to blow off some steam, to get some distance from the day-to-day, and spend some quality time with those you love.

One of your friends has been bugging you to try a new roleplaying game they picked up. Something about Heroes...? Like in those movies, the ones with the rich guy with awesome armor or the blonde dude with a lightning hammer. Should be a good way to inject some levity in your lives!

The second world is the Marvel Universe, and it is accessed from the first world in the same way it is accessed through ours; via comics, film, and all sorts of other media. Like roleplaying games.


Q: What system are you using?
A: Marvel Heroic Roleplaying.

Q: What's MHRP like?
A: It's built off the Cortex Plus system, which gamers who have played other Margaret Weis Productions games will be familiar with. If you're unfamiliar with Cortex Plus, I think the system bears a striking resemblance to FATE games such as Dresden Files and Spirit of the Century.

Q: How many players are you accepting?
A: 3-5.

Q: How long will the game last?
A: I have one Event planned, and ideas for more. How much we play depends on how popular and sustainable this turns out to be.

Q: What's with the two characters?
A: The first is the character you will be playing; the second is your character's character. We'll be switching between the two in a manner similar to how MHRP switches between Action and Transition Scenes. The Event’s Acts may focus more on one character or the other, depending on the actions of the players. In particular, the first Act will feature a customized version of the first part of the Breakout Mini-Event to serve as a tutorial both for myself and the players.

Q: That's it? No more hints?
A: This is a cooperative storytelling game. We’ll cross that bridge when we get there.

Interested participants need to submit two characters.

The first character is a stepped-up Specialist (OM104). Potential players should choose Affiliation dice, a Distinction, and a Specialty or two (at appropriate levels). In addition, put together a sketch of the character's Personality. We'll be jointly writing Backgrounds for the characters, so keep an eye on the other submissions and think about how you'd create a strong emotional or family tie to one or more of them. These characters should be relatively "normal" (for their world) young adults. An aspiring psychologist, rookie police officer, or artist-slumming-as-barista are all good choices. We can work with younger characters, too (like late high school?), especially if everybody goes that route. A middle-aged businessman, retired physicist, or state senator probably won't work as well here.

John Darksun
Affiliation: Solo d4, Buddy d10, Team d6.
Distinction: Can't Put Down the Keyboard
Specialties: Tech Expert (d8), Vehicle Rookie (d6)
Personality: Loves to program and write stories, and tends to get so wrapped up in doing so that he forgets to tend to other parts of his life.

After the players are chosen, we will jointly create a Watcher character that will serve as the player's Watcher in the first world.

The second character is a randomly-generated Hero datafile (generator) with player-supplied Background, Personality, and Resources & Assets. I'm not going to be strict with this; I'm looking for non-established heroes, I want to see how your creative thought process works, and I want to see where you end up with it. What can you make with an odd or weird situation? If you want, talk me through the process. Did an idea hit you halfway through, and you ran with it? At the end, did you go back and tweak a few things to better suit the character's Personality? That's all good! You don't need to go super in-depth here, either; just show the cool idea you got, how you got there, and flesh it out enough that the idea comes across.

jdarksun on


  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    Obsidian Portal page (work in progress)

    Player Characters:
    Lucy Johnson (as played by tzeentchling), quiet, bookish teen adept at avoiding the spotlight. Younger sister of Barbara Johnson (deceased). Babysat Jake Larson's youngest siblings.

    Jake Larson (as played by Grog), family business prodigy forced to grow up early. Went to high school with Barbara Johnson (deceased), Paul Madsen, and Carmen Schultz. Knows Lucy Johnson because she used to babysit his youngest siblings.

    James Madsen (as played by GrimmyTOA), reluctant doctor and fan of the cosmos. Older brother of Paul Madsen. Went to college with Barbara Johnson (deceased) and Carmen Schultz. Ex-boyfriend of Barbara.

    Paul Madsen (as played by Suicide Slyde), retired military tech specialist. Younger brother of James Madsen. Went to high school with Barbara Johnson (deceased), Jake Larson, and Carmen Schultz.

    Carmen Schultz (as played by Sneaks), unsatisfied psych grad working a temp job. Went to high school with Barbara Johnson (deceased), Jake Larson, and Paul Madsen. Went to college with Barbara Johnson and James Madsen. Pledged to the same sorority (Chi Mu Nu) as Barbara.

    Non-player Characters:
    Barbara Johnson: Deceased. Last seen at a party - found dead a week later. Older sister of Lucy Johnson. Went to high school with Jake Larson, Paul Madsen, and Carmen Schultz. Went to college with James Madsen and Carmen. Pledged to the same sorority (Chi Mu Nu) as Carmen. Ex-girlfriend of James.

    Kitty Wolfinger: Barbara's former roommate. Organized the "farewell" party for Barabara, and is playing the Watcher for the player characters' MHRP game.

    jdarksun on
  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    Not formatted yet, and the roll links aren't attached at the moment (nor, frankly, are they likely ever to be), but here's my cached character. Glad we're still soldiering on, despite the ... unpleasantness.

    Character: James L. Madsen
    Affiliations: Solo d10, Team d6, Buddy d4
    Distinction: I'm my own man, dammit.
    Specialties: Medical d8, Cosmic d6.
    Personality: James never wanted to be a doctor, really, but in his family what dad says goes. He really lights up when he gets to talk about stars, or nebulae, or the large-scale structure of... well, you get the point. He probably brought a telescope along on this trip, is what I'm saying. Med student or just recently graduated from med school, probably.

    Name: Ranger Saar
    Mechanical stuff:
    Origin: (7) - Non-Human (1 Set, +2 SFX, +1 Lim) (Alien)
    Affiliations: (3) - Buddy d10, Solo d8, Team d6
    Power Set: (10) - 2xd10, 3xd8 on the Common Table
    Ambush Predator
    Power Traits:
    -D10 (8) - Strength
    -D10 (7) - Stamina
    -D8 (6) - Senses After a pair of sevens I needed to re roll
    -D8 (Becomes a D6) (1) - Poison Blast Rerolled a (6)
    -D8 (4) - Reflexes
    SFX (2 extra due to origin): Second Wind, Unleashed, Area Attack
    Limits (1 extra due to origin): Exhausted, Unfamiliar Biology (as Luke Cage's Difficult Recovery (BR78)).
    Specialties: (3) - One Expert, One Master
    -Master Combat (selected)
    -Expert (6) - Menace
    Distinctions: One each of types (2) (3) and (4)
    -(2) Not that far from a Bounty Hunter
    -(3) Alien Cop
    -(4) Always gets his man
    Milestones: As I rolled a (1) and a (2), both will be Affiliation based.
    -Looking for a partner, not a boss: Rangers work with partners. You need someone to watch your back after all. They don't, however, submit well to rigid hierarchies, as they may be several years between visits to HQ. Finding a permanent partner would be big xp here.
    -Making the most of it: Saar is stuck on earth for the foreseeable future. He needs to make contacts, especially within powerful organizations that can get a message home.
    Physical and Powers Description:
    Saar stands a little under six feet in height, and is proportionally very broad in the shoulder, even by superhero standards. He is basically saurian in appearance, possessing a green, scaly skin and a prominent, toothy jaw (in fact, one of his first adventures on earth began when Spider-man mistook him for the Lizard and webbed him up. Saar was not amused). He possesses no visible eyes or ears, but has a beard of twitching, twisting antennae that heighten his senses, allowing him to track his prey more efficiently. He tends to dress in black leather, his Ranger uniform and equipment having been severely damaged during his teleportation from Circinus). His biology is alien, even by extraterrestrial standards, which can make medical treatment challenging.
    His unbelievable strength and stamina (when truly riled, Saar is capable of frightening levels of destruction) are complemented by quick reflexes and sharp senses. Saar's biological heritage as an ambush predator has gifted him with heightened senses and the ability to spit a potent neurotoxin some distance.
    Ranger Saar. The Tracker. The Unshakeable Tail. Hard Justice. Partner Dead. Ship Gone. Tech Fried. Stranded.

    The Rangers are the most feared paramilitary organization in the galaxy known on earth as Circinus. They are efficient killers and ruthless hunters, and they need to be. Circinus was once home to a sprawling Galactic Empire, and the Pax Galactica was the order of things for a hundred million years. Thousands of species evolved, rose, ruled, and went extinct under the benevolent and forceful protection of the Hegemonic Council and the Emperor (whoever and whatever the Emperor happened to be at the time). Now, the halls of Exertium are blasted wrecks. The planet labs of Isquit I-VII have been boiled away into magma. The surviving civilizations of Circinus have fallen into squabbling over shreds of meat from the Empire's carcass. Anarchy and chaos reign throughout, and amidst it stalk the Rangers.

    If you're in one of the bits of Circinus that still have laws, and you break one -- a big one, nobody has time to worry about littering ordinances any more -- someone will put a pair of Rangers on your tail. The Rangers will find you, and the Rangers will kill you. It's more or less that simple. It's proverbial by now: if you attract the attention of the Rangers, you'll be running for the rest of your life. The Rangers are the best, and Saar is the best of them.

    That's why, when child-strangling Xxxub found out that he'd strangled the wrong child this time -- some Princeling's niece, apparently -- he'd started to run even before the announcement had been made. By the time Saar had been assigned to the case, Xxxub's little runabout had been chewing up the parsecs towards the dark zones at the fringes of the still-civilized. Saar had put the pedal down, and he caught up with the murderer near a burned-out planet orbiting a dying star off near the Hollondine nebula.

    That's when Xxub did something unbelievably stupid. He landed the runabout on that unknown world. And Saar, bloody-minded and ignoring his partner's warnings, followed. Something in that planet -- some ancient relic of the dead Empire -- must still have been active, because when Xxub led his pursuers into that giant cavern there was a flash of light----


    ----searing pain----


    ----Saar came to, holding one of the child-strangler's brainstalks. He was lying in a crater in what he would come to know as Central Park, New York.

    Granted conditional amnesty by the earth authorities Saar works to find a way back to his distant home. Meanwhile, he's still a Ranger. Justice may have a different meaning here on earth, but a Cop is still a Cop, and criminals, wherever they may lurk, can never hide from Ranger Saar!

  • Suicide SlydeSuicide Slyde Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    Character: Paul (possibly) Madsen
    Affiliation: Team d10, Solo d6, Buddy d4
    Distinction: "Let's just think this through." By my honor
    Specialties: Tech d8, Combat d6
    Personality: Paul joined the military at 18 to restore "honor to the family name," at least that's what his father said. In the military, Paul was able to pursue his love of tech and became the tech-expert of his unit. Now that his service contract is up, Paul is eager to see his friends that he has missed for the past three years. With permission, I think there's an opportunity for Paul and James to be brothers, since both seem to have a douchebag dad.

    Character: Dr. David Row
    Affiliation: Solo d10, Buddy d8, Team d6
    Distinctions: Street Performer, (Former) Biochemist, Brilliant
    Power Set
    Quick-Change Artist
    d10 Shapeshifting
    SFX: Unleashed
    Limit: Mutant, Conscious Activation
    Specialties: Psych Expert, Acrobatics Expert, Science Master (Biochemistry)
    Coming To Terms
    1xp when you find and have a friendly conversation with a fellow mutant
    3xp when you join with a mutant team temporarily
    10xp when you join a mutant group permanently or rid yourself of your mutation or turn your back on all mutants
    The Way Things Were
    1xp when you use your biochemistry background to help someone
    3xp when you establish a permanent lab to carry out research
    10xp when you discover a cure for all mutations or discover a way to protect mutants from losing their mutations
    Dr. David Row started a career as a promising biochemist. He spent countless hours and grant dollars searching for a way to solve the "mutant problem." However, David was a mutant. David's true nature was revealed by a rival, and suddenly he found himself with no allies, and was forced to live a life of seclusion, from both mutants and humans. His mother forced him into gymnastics at an early age and now it serves as David's only source of income, as a street performer, dancing, singing and telling jokes for extra change from strangers.
    David's appearance fits his lifestyle. He dresses in loose fitting clothing, permanent 5 o'clock shadow, and unkempt hair. Picture a down on his luck Reed Richards and you get the idea.

    Suicide Slyde on
  • SneaksSneaks Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    First World | Carmen Schultz
    Affiliation | Solo D6, Buddy D10, Team D4
    Distinction | "What am I still doing here?"
    Specialties | Psych Expert D8, Business Rookie D6

    Conventional wisdom says that college is for two things: for cultivating emotional maturity, and for preparing for the rest of life. Carmen—now 21—found four years to only be enough time for the former, and now she's sorely feeling a lack of the latter. Her diploma is over her bed in her parents' house, and as she drudges through her days as a poorly-paid administrative temp, she thinks about finding a way into journalism, and practices using cynical irony to mask her depression in front of the bathroom mirror.

    Second World | Nellie Cochrane
    Affiliation | Solo D10, Buddy D8, Team D6
    Distinctions | Failed Experiment, Just Tell Me Where To Go, Nervous Nellie
    Power Set | The Infiltration Gene Modification (IGM)
    • Invisibility D10
    • Psychic Blast D10
    • Telepathy D8
    • Mind Control D8
    • Surrogate Senses D8
    SFX Unleashed | Step up or double any IGM power for one action. If that action fails, add a die to the doom pool equal to the power die you unleashed.
    SFX Multipower | Use two or more IGM powers in your dice pool, at -1 step for each additional power.
    Limit Uncontrollable | Change any IGM power into a complication and gain 1PP. Activate an opportunity or remove the complication to recover the power.
    Specialties | Covert Master D10, Psych Expert D8, Acrobatics Expert D8
    Milestone | I Was Never Here
    01XP when you first use your powers to help a covert operation stay covert
    03XP when your powers cause a covert operation to be made public
    10XP when another hero helps you cover up an event you inadvertently made public or when you cover up your involvement in an event at the expense of another hero
    Milestone | The Voice in My Ear, Not the Ones in my Head
    01XP when you start a scene with another hero as your 'handler'
    03XP when you inflict mental/emotional stress on your handler or when another hero helps you recover from mental/emotional stress
    10XP when you join your handler's team or when you quit a team after your handler is no longer a member of it

    Nellie Cochrane wanted nothing more to serve her country, and when she was 18, she got started. First, it was the Royal Navy, then the SBS. Then SIS. Nellie excelled at her job and excelled at following orders; what her superiors wanted was what she wanted.

    Her involvement in the Infiltration Gene Modification (IGM) Project began with an offer, like any other. Of course she accepted, as most of those selected did. Nellie's initial response to the procedures was astounding; unlocking specific psychic talents was the object of the program, of course, but full-fledged telepathy? It was unprecedented.

    It was also unprepared for. For her entire career, Nellie had thrived by taking orders as gospel, but suddenly every assumption, every prejudice, and every doubt hidden behind such orders was laid bare. She knew how people thought. What's more she knew what they thought of her. And it never stopped.

    Nellie suffered a nervous breakdown two weeks into post-modification training. The Company (so to speak) packed her up and shipped her to New York, home to many of the leading authorities on telepathy. She's been there for one month now, and it's doubtful that she'll ever resume field work.

    Sneaks on
  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    @tzeentchling He's your character from Google's cache. Feel free to use as-is, or rewrite as you see fit.
    OK, here's Obscura, the character rolled up in Denada's "Let's Read" thread, translated as best I can to MHRP stats:

    Name: Obscura [Lucy Crumm]
    Origin: Non-human (magical clone)
    Affiliations: Solo D6, Buddy D10, Team D8
    Distinctions: Created By Magic, In Search of an Identity, Excellent Scout
    Power Sets:
    Latent Psionics
    Telepathy D8
    -SFX: Counterattack
    -Limit: Conscious Activation
    Darkforce Conduit
    Darkforce Control D8
    Darkforce Bolts D6
    Flight (Darkforce Wings) D6
    -SFX: Burst [Bolts]
    -SFX: Constructs [Control]
    -SFX: Immunity (Darkforce)
    -Limit: Exhausted
    -Limit: Growing Dread
    Specialities: Mystic Expert, Acrobatics Expert
    Who - Or What - Am I?
    not sure on details, but something like +10XP: Define an identity for herself
    Hunted By Cultists
    again not sure, confronting the group going after her would be some XP. Anything directly involving Blackheart would be +10XP.
    Christ's Crown simply can't catch a break. Years after Blackheart's last attack on the town, things were finally beginning to attain a semblance of previous life. Families had slowly returned, stores re-opened, church re-consecrated. Life was, if not good, then at least honest and rewarding.

    Then the strangers arrived. Oh, they were friendly enough, but the townfolk were naturally wary. For all the good it did them, anyway. A cabal known as the Hearts of Darkness, worshipers of the demon Blackheart, forced their way into the town, terrorizing the citizens. Their true goal was darker: to mystically clone the body of Lucy Crumm, the mortal whom Blackheart once tried to take as a wife to rule aside him in Hell. They looked to create a version of her without the innocence of the original, which they believed was the source of her ultimate refusal of the demon lord. To do so, they intended to create the clone with Darkforce energy, the energy of Blackheart himself.

    In a way, the cultists were successful. The ritual was enacted, and the cloned body of Lucy Crumm was successfully constructed and imbued with Darkforce. Before the cultists could present their prize to Lord Blackheart, however, their ritual was interrupted by Johnny Blaze, the Ghost Rider. While some of the cultists did manage to escape, the remade “Lucy” was rescued. Recognizing the young woman from his battles with Blackheart in Christ's Crown before, Johnny vowed to protect Lucy at all costs.

    Lucy herself doesn't quite know what to think, or for that matter who she really is. She realizes that Johnny saved her from the cult, and for that she is grateful, but the name and history of the original Lucy Crumm come only in fleeting glimpses, half-remembered fragments of a life she never lived. Johnny realizes he can only help so much, however, and has enlisted the help of a trusted psychologist in NYC, Dr. Martin Kairos, to help her with her personality disorder and fragmented memories.

    Still, of all the supernatural beings, Ghost Rider is possibly one of the better ones to help her determine who she is and, perhaps more importantly, how and why to use her powers. Her telepathy may be a remnant from the original Lucy Crumm, but the shadowy wings of Darkforce that drape around her like a cape when not flying her through the air are decidedly new, as are the projectiles of solid Darkforce that she can throw some distance. Relishing the sense of purpose that fighting crime with Ghost Rider gives her, Lucy has given herself the heroic name of Obscura. Unfortunately, the Hearts of Darkness have not given up on their creation, and still seek her to offer her to Blackheart – after all, Ghost Rider can't always be there to get in their way....

    Specialist/Player One:
    Name: Lucy Johnson
    Affiliation: Solo D10, Buddy D8, Group D6
    Distinction: Fade Into the Background
    Specialties: Science Expert (D8), Covert Rookie (D6)
    Personality: girl, 17ish (late high school), kind of unpretty, quiet. Has a really busy family: parents on the go, an older sister who's popular, and a baby brother who sucks up attention like a sponge - so she has responded by avoiding attention as much as possible. Nose often stuck in a book, fiction/sci-fi/fantasy. Relatively smart but not in a showy way.

    Intentionally similar to the Marvel character, but a bit different focus.

  • GrogGrog My sword is only steel in a useful shape.Registered User regular
    May take me til tomorrow evening to sort this out. Sorry if I hold things up.


  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    Grog wrote: »
    May take me til tomorrow evening to sort this out. Sorry if I hold things up.
    It's all right, we had a day of downtime. We can start tomorrow.

  • Suicide SlydeSuicide Slyde Registered User regular
    So now my internet connection has decided it wants to take a nap. I'm going to give it the night to rest up. I can post from my phone, however it's a little limited as editing doesn't work and I have to type out tags and I can't view most spoilers. Hopefully this won't be a problem for more than today and I won't have to write much more of these like this.

  • EgosEgos Registered User regular
    I'll post today also, just wanted to make sure something was kosher.

  • Erin The RedErin The Red The Name's Erin! Woman, Podcaster, Dungeon Master, IT nerd, Parent, Trans. AMA Baton Rouge, LARegistered User regular
    @Jdarksun sorry to butt in, but I wanted to say that the opening narration is superb. :^:

    Help a trans woman (me) afford GRS!
    Hi Santa/Satan!
    Video games -> PSN and Twitch: The_Road_Virus Steam: TheRoadVirus
  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    @TheRoadVirus Anyone who wants to butt in and tell me that I'm awesome is totally welcome to do so. :^: :D

  • Suicide SlydeSuicide Slyde Registered User regular
    An update: My modem is dead. I will (hopefully) be getting a new one tomorrow, plus new phones. Feel free to pm phone suggestions, the wife and I have a $500 cap for two and since we are both insanely jealous people that's $250 each. That is all. Carry on.

  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    @Grog How's it going? If you don't want to try and rebuild your old character, we can work something new out.

    Sorry for the delay guys. Egos and I are chatting over PMs - trying to rebuilding lost stuff is a trial. Does anybody know of a internet archive/cache that might have crawled the thread on the 4th?

  • tzeentchlingtzeentchling Doctor of Rocks San DiegoRegistered User regular
    Oops. I was thinking, hmm, I haven't heard anything about the marvel thread, what's going on? Then I realized I hadn't bookmarked it. D'oh!

  • GrogGrog My sword is only steel in a useful shape.Registered User regular
    No excuses here, but I'll get it up tonight double-super-promise.


  • GrogGrog My sword is only steel in a useful shape.Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    Jake Larson
    Affiliations: Solo D8, Buddy D6, Team D10
    Distinction: Let me sort it out
    Specialities: Business Expert, Tech Rookie
    As the eldest of 7 children, Jake had to grow up quickly while his parents worked 5 jobs between them. Even now that he is 21 he's still the lynchpin of the family, looking after his younger siblings and managing the family's hardware store and he wouldn't have it any other way. The shop would've gone under if it weren't for his natural flair for trade and business- which is why Jake was a little surprised when his parents gave him a well deserved week's vacation.

    Affiliations: Solo D6, Buddy D10, Team D8
    Distinctions: Fatalistic Levity, Transcendent Shaman, Ethereal Splendour
    Power Set: Golden Moon
    D10 - Invisibility
    D10 - Intangibility
    D8 - Mimic
    D8 - Stretching
    D8 - Size Changing
    D8 - Teleport
    SFX - Counterattack, Unleashed
    Limit - Exhausted
    Specialities: Cosmic Master, Psych Expert, Medical Expert
    Milestone: Trojan Orbit
    1xp when you aid an ally against an enemy when neither of them can see you.
    3xp when you mimic an ally's power.
    10xp when you protect an ally by drawing attention to yourself or leave an ally to deal with the consequences of your actions.

    Milestone: Wax and Wane
    1xp when you use your Size Changing power trait to it's minimum or maximum extreme.
    3xp when you use your Exhausted limit.
    10xp when you have a positive effect on a villain's decision or convince an ally that they have no choice in a matter.

    Telesto is better thought of as a distant watcher than a brazen defender. His experiences have taught him not to fight fate (be it an accidental push or a crashing avalanche) but choice. Choice shapes the world and Telesto does not wish to see that choice warp it beyond what fate has decided. Despite this seemingly fickle outlook, the mysterious being always has an air of levity about him.

    When he chooses to reveal himself, he is described as being anywhere from 3 to 14 feet tall with an invariably featureless white face. Golden, seemingly prehensile cloth wreaths the rest of his body where it roils and extends as if pulled by stellar winds.

    As reclusive shaman of an equally reclusive Papuan tribe, Telesto's life as a mortal was mainly occupied with the reading of the stars and the art of tribal medicine. His true passion lay in exploring the world through a type of hallucinogenic meditation, a practice that mostly yielded confusing imagery and strange portents. It was only when he attempted to extend his consciousness beyond the earth that he found true clarity.

    Sitting in a dusty crater he stared down in wonder at a blue planet that could have fit in the palm of his hand. Reaching out to do so he was suddenly transported back- though not to his home. The shaman found himself beneath the waves staring up at a gibbous moon, surprised that the current did not move him nor the water drown him. Rising from the sea he had to concentrate hard to materialise- but into what? He could not remember his name, let alone what he had looked like. Looking to the sky a smile formed as he began to mirror the pale tones and golden ribbons that distant satellite created on the waves.

    So I did a bit of a do-over on the second character's background to give it a little more personality, while the first world character has remained largely the same (though the age has changed slightly to be a little closer to the others).

    Grog on

  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    Nice! How is @Egos 's character recovery coming along?

  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    I'm not sure Egos will be joining us, so let's get started (if he is, he can jump in). First off is deciding the relationships between our First World characters.

    Here's who we have so far:

    James L. Madsen (as played by @GrimmyTOA), reluctant doctor and fan of the cosmos. Brother of Paul? (An aside - if James and Paul are brothers, James should totally have "C" for a middle initial)

    Paul Madsen (as played by @Suicide Slyde), retired military tech specialist. Brother of James?

    Carmen Schultz (as played by @Sneaks), unsatisfied psych grad working a temp job.

    Lucy Johnson (as played by @tzeentchling), quiet, bookish teen adept at avoiding the spotlight.

    Jake Larson (as played by @Grog), family business prodigy forced to grow up early.

    (Apologies for the one-sentence bios, I'm a bit addicted to the quick drama punch.)

    There's a strong common thread of family with most of the characters. That's good, it's something we can immediately work with. The demanding father figure in both James' and Paul's background lends itself to them being brothers. What about Carmen and Lucy? Carmen could be Lucy's popular older sister. Carmen might know James from college. Jake is the same age as Carmen and Paul, which could indicate that they're all close friends from high school.

    I'm not imposing anything here, just priming the pump of discussion. :) Thoughts?

  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    That looks good to me. If Paul and Carmen went to school/college together James could have even been a TA for her in some early pre-med type course.

  • tzeentchlingtzeentchling Doctor of Rocks San DiegoRegistered User regular
    I can make Lucy a bit older - small community college 2nd year student, saving up for a bigger college. Maybe she met Carmen there before she graduated? Lucy's younger brother could be friends with one of Jake's siblings - maybe they did a combined baby sitting situation or something?

  • GrogGrog My sword is only steel in a useful shape.Registered User regular
    I've just realised that Jake's background doesn't leave alot of room for a social life, so knowing people through his family duties works well @tzeentchling

    Also think that Jake knowing people from high school but having lost touch since would be a good idea. That way the vacation is a kind of reunion for him.


  • SneaksSneaks Registered User regular
    edited August 2012
    I think Carmen's character (I mean Nellie, not Carmen's own moral fiber or anything like that) might be a reflection of what she actually thinks of Paul and/or James. Probably Paul, what with the military service. Nellie sort of followed other people's directions right off a cliff, Carmen might be using her character to express her concerns about this happening to one or both of the brothers Madsen. (I don't really picture Carmen as being a big role-player before this game starts, so an ulterior motive might work for her.)

    Sneaks on
  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    Meta. I like it.

  • tzeentchlingtzeentchling Doctor of Rocks San DiegoRegistered User regular
    I could also have Lucy and Carmen connected via Lucy's older sister - maybe she (let's call her Barbara, or Barbs to her friends) and Carmen were in the same sorority (let's say Chi Mu Nu - greek phonetic "X-Men" :D)? They might have even tried to get Lucy to join, but it kind of didn't work out during pledging and now it's a bit awkward between the two.

    Meanwhile, it's possible that Lucy has seen/saw James around campus and developed a bit of a crush, but was way too shy to actually go talk to him and/or confront him, and now that he's graduated and Lucy hasn't she figures she'll probably never see him again anyway.

  • SneaksSneaks Registered User regular
    I could also have Lucy and Carmen connected via Lucy's older sister - maybe she (let's call her Barbara, or Barbs to her friends) and Carmen were in the same sorority (let's say Chi Mu Nu - greek phonetic "X-Men" :D)? They might have even tried to get Lucy to join, but it kind of didn't work out during pledging and now it's a bit awkward between the two.
    I like this, though it does beg the question of where Babs is if not on this vacation.

  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    Sneaks wrote: »
    I could also have Lucy and Carmen connected via Lucy's older sister - maybe she (let's call her Barbara, or Barbs to her friends) and Carmen were in the same sorority (let's say Chi Mu Nu - greek phonetic "X-Men" :D)? They might have even tried to get Lucy to join, but it kind of didn't work out during pledging and now it's a bit awkward between the two.
    I like this, though it does beg the question of where Babs is if not on this vacation.
    There's no reason she couldn't be on this vacation. We could make Babs the Watcher NPC.

  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    Or -- and not to go too dark right off the bat -- she could be dead. That is why we're all out here. To remember and celebrate her.

    It's supposed to be a grim world, right?

  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    D'awwww. Thanks.

  • SneaksSneaks Registered User regular
    Sounds good to me.

  • GrogGrog My sword is only steel in a useful shape.Registered User regular
    In the grim darkness of the first world there is only Babs.


  • Suicide SlydeSuicide Slyde Registered User regular
    Sounds good to me as well. Sorry about putting zero input into this though. Finally got the modem to work but the connection keeps dropping in and out, making anything an exercise in frustration. I will be more participatory from now on I super-duper triple-dog promise.

  • tzeentchlingtzeentchling Doctor of Rocks San DiegoRegistered User regular
    edited August 2012
    Yeah, while that's depressing it would fit with the world. Massively popular sorority girl, cheerleader even, always bubbly, goes missing after a party. A week later they find her body. No leads yet on the killer. All the more reason for Lucy to disengage with the world.

    Perhaps James was a boyfriend/ex-boyfriend of Babs?

    tzeentchling on
  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    Can do, though I'd prefer it if he wasn't actually, you know, a suspect in her disappearance.

  • tzeentchlingtzeentchling Doctor of Rocks San DiegoRegistered User regular
    Yeah, let's say former boyfriend, a couple years ago. Was out stargazing with his brother at a big event (lots of witnesses) at the time, maybe some sort of space/science center.

  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    Excellent. That's feeling like a real group of people to me.

    OK, next two questions:

    1) Where do you want to be out on vacation / remembering Babs? The beach, the woods - a ski trip? Visiting her favorite city?

    2) The Watcher NPC. Do we just want to ditch this concept? I was thinking it might be interesting to have as an analogue, but with the story we've chosen, I'm not sure it fits anymore. And that's OK; I have no problem just leaving it behind. If we do still want it, they could be a relatively recent addition to the group - maybe even an outsider. One of Bab's friends, a roommate, or an S/O?

    As an aside, I'm putting together an Obsidian Portal page for Watcher use and as a collective campaign resource. I'll link it later on.

  • jdarksunjdarksun Scion of Chaos Registered User regular
    Still fleshing things out, but the base of the Obsidian Portal page is go.

    One quick note - it didn't seem like Jake knew Barbara at all, so I tweaked it so that Barbara went to high school with Jake, Paul, and Carmen. That puts those four of an age, with Lucy trailing them and James just ahead. Is that OK with everybody?

  • GrimmyTOAGrimmyTOA Registered User regular
    Super stuff.

    I'm okay either way with the NPC Watcher. If there's a compelling reason to have/not have one, I'm all ears.

    As for the location, backwoods cabin? Barbara's family farm/cottage/palatial estate?

  • GrogGrog My sword is only steel in a useful shape.Registered User regular
    I think an outdoorsy retreat would be a good idea. After a day of hiking there isn't much to do but sit around, so an RPG would fit right in.


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