Showing posts from 2017

Campaign: Miranda Leigh Daily

Character: Miranda Leigh Daily
Game: Monsterhearts 2
Episodes: 2
Theme Song: Porcelain by Rachel Taylor
Keywords: Hopeless, needy, abandoned

Burnt out as I am and have been, I decided to still go to Monsterhearts with a new group in TAG. Miranda is a mortal, and easy for me to play because it's easy to play mortals. But I did discover some new things about her as I played her. While Miranda defines herself mostly by what she does for other people, she conflates this very easily to mean love. Even if she doesn't actually love someone.

Her infatuation with Flinch, the werewolf (she doesn't know he's a werewolf and neither does he), mostly comes from a need to keep him safe and to help him escape his shitty situation. To her, that need to help him, to do all she can to help him, must mean love. Just like when she was tutoring Tucker and getting him to pass his courses, she genuinely wanted him to do good, and so she thought that was love.

And then it wasn't. Because they …

Breakout: Gabriela Silva

Character: Gabriela Silva
Game: Chill 3rd Edition
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Lucifernandis by Boogarins
Keywords: Stubborn, reactive, commanding

I got to play one game at Breakout, and I had decided it would be Chill. Chill is a game I continue to support but have never played. I wanted to see this horror baby in action, and see how Matt ran it, but mostly I choose Chill because I wanted play a game with him. I have all the bits to Chill. Dice, tokens, books, etc. I love games that have societies, and Chill has SAVE.

In this game, we got to play members of SAVE. I chose Gabriela Silva, partly because I was at a table full of men, and partly because she was a cop, and I didn't want to play an emotionally laboured woman. In her little write up, Gabriela is described as a second generation SAVE member, whose mother was a member and has since gone missing, so Gabriela and her girlfriend joined SAVE to try to find her mum.

Before then, she was a cop in her hometown in Brazil. She went down th…

Campaign: Miranda Leigh Daily

Character: Miranda Leigh Daily
Game: Monsterhearts 2
Episode: 1
Theme Song: Fickle Game by Amber Run
Keywords: Outgoing, optimistic, haunted

When I sat down to play Monsterhearts, my initial goal was to play a young Jason Momoa as the Queen and function as a hot queen instead of a cold one. Of course, when I sat down, I sat down with a lot of powerhouses. The werewolf, the ghoul, the vampire, and the witch. I didn't know the group playing, but I knew based on the law of averages, if I played a manipulative dude queen, I'd be dead before episode 2.

So I defaulted to my comfy space and made a mortal named Miranda. I wanted her to be different than my other mortal, who was a really broken individual coming in. That being said, I knew my high functioning, popular, nice girl needed to have a reason she was vulnerable and why the darkness would make her feel beautiful.

We started with the established relationship of Miranda being in love with the werewolf, Flinch. That was really my onl…

Campaign: The Keres

Character: Alexa Atreus the Keres
Game: The Sprawl
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Still Life by Covenant
Keywords: Ideological, tender, contemplative

I honestly never thought I'd be playing a heist focused game. Cyberpunk is a genre I love and hate. But I adore Hamish and I like his design ideas, so when Rach was like "let's play the Sprawl!" I was in. I had heard interesting things about it. Now, that being said, we are playing in a cyberpunk future of Toronto, not the USA. Thus, the culture around technology and such was going to be different, and we all wanted to bring some Canadiana to the genre in how we made our characters.

When I looked at Canadian culture, specifically Toronto culture, I wanted to explore the idea of consensual death and assisted suicide. What did death look like in the future, and with the collapsing of industries into one-stop shops, how did that impact death? So I made an agency that specializes in death and dying. They handle the legal side, the eut…

Campaign: Poe

Character: Poe
Game: Monsterhearts 2
Episodes: 2
Theme Song: Dead End Friends by Them Crooked Vultures
Keywords: Flustered, apathetic, high

Oh Poe. Why you gotta be so simple? In our most recent episode of Monsterhearts, Poe got a bit more entangled with people. The ghoul made her appearance, and Poe wanted nothing to do with her, not really. But they got high together and talked about Poe's demon, because fuck man, no one believes her anyways and this girl wasn't going to either. Probably some freak who talks big.

The episode was intense. The vampire reached out to Poe via text, and when they met up for lunch, rather than be sympathetic (my original plan), I chose to have Poe call the vampire out on being kinda rapey towards the hunter, Cage, and not biting people consensually. Poe doesn't... care... that much, but mostly wants to keep the vampire away from her. He's a fucking serial killer and she's not convinced that he won't do it again. So the more she can foc…

Dreamation: Justice

Character: Justice the Raven of Ravenhall
Game: Fall of Magic
Episodes: 3
Theme Song: Dust in the Wind by Digital Daggers
Keywords: Watcher, knowledgable, angry

Everyone knows I love Fall of Magic. On the way to Dreamation, for the game I was facilitating, I had decided if no one chose it I was going to play a Raven of Ravenhall. And she would be a spymaster. That's all I knew. Somehow I associated ravens with spies, probably because of Leliana in Dragon Age Inquisition. It's important in Fall of Magic not to go in really knowing anything about your character because you find all that out in game. It's a difficult challenge. But the more I find you stay present and don't get into your head about the characters or your next scene, the better your play experience will be.

I didn't describe Justice until someone asked me to. I described her as nondescript. Darker skin, eyes, and hair, with a brown cloak and brown clothes and fairly forgettable in an almost magical way. Sh…

Dreamation: Emir

Character: Emir
Game: Mars 244
Episodes: 1
Theme song: One Last Time by Jaymes Young
Keywords: Tender, astute, loving

There was a mine. Prisoners were sent to the mine to work. At first, this was acceptable. The colony on Mars didn't want to deal with prisoners. But then any crime seemed punishable by ostracism to the mine, even that of a child who simply knocked over some equipment. Any guardian of that child couldn't abandon them, could they? So of course they pick up their life and move to the prison, get a job there, and carry on. Always carry on. Follow the water. Learn to flow.

I played Mars 244 despite being dead in the water mostly because I wanted check out a game by Rachel E S Walton and this was, by far, the best game I played at the convention. I played two characters, but I'm going to focus on my primary character, Emir. Emir was a care giver and sex worker who lived and worked at the prison where his adopted nephew was serving time. The prison being the mine. It …

Dreamation: James "Bull" Toren

Character: James "Bull" Toren
Game: Carry: A Game About War
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Doin' All Right by the Fugs
Keywords: Stupid, stubborn, angry

Oooh boy. So this is going to be a little loaded. I want to preface this with I am not American. If you didn't know, I'm Canadian. So when I signed up for an emotionally loaded game about the Vietnam War, I wasn't think about this factor. I was thinking "I've read and watched a lot about this war and I'd love to play something that explores how fucked up this was." Carry is fucked up. It's amazing, go buy it and play it. But it is fucked up.

Now all that being said, you don't get to make your characters. You get to pick up a character who already exists as part of the squad and play them. I'm cool with that. I looked at the characters and knew I wanted someone who would push back, who would be all American, and who didn't wanna fuckin' be there.

James "Bull" Toren was a fa…

Dreamation: Joanne Oakley

Character: Officer Joanne Oakley
Game: Noir World
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Beauty and the Beast by David Bowie
Keywords: Scheming, impatient, hungry

Saturday AM rolled around and I was in a game of Noir World. I had been wanting to try Noir World, mostly because I love the genre when it's not pulpy and I have a lot of feelings around the sexism and racism inherent in the genre. But I was fucking tired and I had zero spoons left when I sat down to this game. People were on the ball, all the other players and the facilitator, but I was so far down the rabbit hole of exhaustion I'm afraid I didn't have much to offer for story.

I even grabbed a decaf coffee by accident. Ugh.

I digress though. The list of options that came up as playable classes was impressive and expansive. I knew I wanted to play someone in power, I wanted to play a woman, and I wasn't interested in that woman being inferior to another playbook in terms of social clout. I wanted someone who people were somewha…

Dreamation: Hannah Jacobs

Character: Hannah Jacobs Game: Velvet Glove
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Moonage Daydream by David Bowie
Keywords: Quiet, careful, watching

When the chance to play Velvet Glove came up, I was so excited. I'm a huge fan of Sarah Richardson's and I wanted to try out this game that offered a chance at exploring exploitation and the lives of girls and women, especially ethnic girls and women.

We sat down and talked a little about what would happen in the game comfort wise, and then started making characters. I was originally going to make The Stoner, but then I saw The Valkyrie and was like "Welp" and took that. I honestly can say I didn't know what I was doing. I read the playbook and the basic moves and didn't find the Valkyrie what I thought she would be.

The Valkyrie was all about helping her gang out of bad situations, as opposed to getting them into bad situations. I struggled with this, because it felt like she was meant to scoop in and save people, and I didn'…

Dreamation: Squire Aleinete Loiselet

Character: Squire Aleinete Loiselet
Game: The Art of Power by Brennan Taylor
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Broken Crown by Mumford & Sons
Keywords: Headstrong, stubborn, annoying

There's a trope in fantasy/medieval fiction that A Knight's Tale perfectly demonstrates: young boy, wants to be a knight, but shit is in his way. When I sat down at Brennan Taylor's new game, The Art of Power, we got to choose from a large variety of powerful* women. Each character was a woman/trans/femme, and each of them had some sort of social clout.

Normally I play pretty strong characters. I don't play a lot of functioning, high society teens who don't have much to worry about. Usually there are vampires or something and they end up inundated with real problems. So I decided I would play someone with way less social clout than anyone else, but who had one hell of a dream and was ready to test the limits of her abilities. Inspired by things like A Knight's Tale and the Disney version of …

Campaign: Poe

Character: Paula "Poe" Stackhouse
Game: Monsterhearts 2 Episodes: 1 Theme song: Hurts Too Good by Ruelle Keywords: Human, malleable, tempted

We had our first game of Monsterhearts 2. I knew I had written a complicated character, but woof, did I not realize how much Poe was afraid of people disliking her and had zero social graces. There was no bite to back up her bark and well, I failed every social move that I rolled.

This means, Poe basically flailed at people and had no recourse. At every turn, she was being manipulated or pulled in a direction and rather than stomp off and get angry, she just... did what people told her to. She was used to being on the losing end of any discussion, and has, on some level, just resigned to being the person that's mostly invisible.

No amount of changing her face, getting piercings and tattoos and blue hair will change the fact she's a nobody. She's not important. She's the girl who says yes to whatever because maybe someone wil…

Campaign: Poe

Character: Paula "Poe" Stackhouse
Game: Monsterhearts 2
Episodes: Character Creation
Theme Song: Devil Devil by Milck
Keywords: Lonely, eager, apathetic

I've always wanted to play an Infernal. Like always. But every time I've had the opportunity, someone else has been the infernal or it's been a one-shot. I got to play Poe briefly with Avery at the helm and it was such an interesting one shot that I wanted to play her again.

So I did. I played her in a storium game and it was highly emotional and almost fulfilling. But it ended early and the story never finished. So inevitably, when Monsterhearts 2 came out, I finally grabbed the infernal playbook without asking what other people wanted and made it mine.

Poe is a sixteen year old girl whose grandmother had a real thing for a guy in high school. So she made a deal with the devil to give her first born daughter to the devil in exchange for the love of the jock and a good fortune. She had three sons. But her eldest son …

One Shot: Eloise

Character: Elouise
Game: Witch: The Road to Lindisfarne
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: The Devil Within by Digital Daggers
Keywords: Manipulative, sympathetic, dangerous

If you're not familiar with the game, Witch: The Road to Lindisfarne is a game about a journey to a holy isle to burn a witch. Along the way, the players must figure out if the witch is innocent or guilty and act accordingly. Elouise is that witch.

I was facilitating this game for a bunch of strangers. In preparing, I decided I would play the witch and use it as a way to act as facilitator, as the witch's role is a bit different. You get to decide if she's guilty or not. And because of the win mechanic, I felt like it would make sense to have the players try to figure out if I was guilty or not.

As I read my questions on my playbook, I wondered if the witch was guilty and if she was, why. I decided that she was guilty. She had used witchcraft to create the black plague (as per the game). Why? I didn't know. I jus…

One Shot: Stacy Callaghan

Character: Stacy Callaghan the Caretaker
Game: Saving Sunshine by Krissy Bullock
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Wide Awake by Katy Perry
Keywords: unqualified, judgemental, overwhelmed

If you haven't heard, I have a doppleganger. Her name is Krissy Bullock and she is, by far, one of the most wonderful people I've had the lovely chance of meeting. If this were an urban fantasy story, she would definitely be the good dopplganger and I the evil one.

But it isn't, so fortunately, we can both be lovely people and exist in Canada at the same time. Krissy is also marvellous because she wrote a larp before she knew larps were a thing. Saving Sunshine is a game about a group of people of varying levels of qualification and involvement deciding whether or not Sunshine, an up and coming young starlet, should receive an experimental, expensive treatment for a fatal rare disease.

You play one of the panel members who are making this decision. I was Stacy Callaghan, a once child-star who was washe…

Two Shot: Eir the Valkyrie

Character: Eir the Valkyrie
Game: Shooting the Moon
Episodes: 2
Theme Song: Trophy by Bat for Lashes
Keywords: Honourable, Powerful, Capable

Today we finished our two-shot of Shooting the Moon. I have been playing a valkyrie named Eir, who started the game as a fierce, frightening, and vaguely platonic character, but we had only played one scene. I played the game with Rob and Rach, and all three of us love urban fantasy, so it seemed a natural choice for our game.

Honestly, in review, I think that was a mistake. But let me be clear: We made an amazing story. Eir ended up bound to Rach's character, Maddox, and neither of them ended up with the beloved. Instead, the two ended up hunting him together to destroy him, as they (mostly Maddox) had helped create him. The story ended up being about this ancient elven line that had been all but eradicated by the valkyries and some other hunters because they were dark elves and were horrible.

Eir had been one of these valkyries. So when the bel…

One Shot: Dani Nolan

Character: Danielle "Dani" Nolan
Game: The Hour Between Dog and Wolf
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: And The World Was Gone by Snowghosts
Keywords: Nosey, lost, aloof

Awhile ago I played The Hour Between Dog and Wolf online with a dear friend. The game never ended, but I really began to dig my character, even though I found having an online character much harder to understand and play than face to face characters. But for that game I made Dani, a young but lively investigative journalist who had left the shitty city to go to a bigger, better city for school.

Naturally, as the daughter of a nurse and a police officer, Dani was pretty adept at taking care of herself. But when her mother got sick, she returned home on the brink of being really successful. She had done a few big articles, and had been ready to be hired at some big time papers. Her mother got cancer, Dani went home, and shortly after, her mother died. Dani knew she couldn't leave her dad alone, so she moved in with him a…

Campaign: Ashley Luckett

Character: Ashley Luckett
Game: Blades in the Dark
Episodes: 1
Theme Song: Soul of a Man by Steven Stern
Keywords: Flirtatious, enduring, lucky

Recently, as some of you may know, I joined the Gauntlet Podcast as a host on the show and regular part of their group. It's been an amazing experience so far, and part of that means joining their games and hangouts online. The first game I managed to sneak into was Blades in the Dark, a game I've heard so much about but have never had a chance to play. I jumped at the opportunity when there was a chance I could get in.

As we sat down on our google hangout and began to be guided through character creation, I originally was making a female character named Magnolia, who was charming and lovely and very much the slide that the playbook wants you to be. The other two players also made female characters, and as I listened to them describe their characters, I decided I would play a guy, not because I didn't want an all woman party, but becau…

Two-Shot: Eir the Valkyrie

Character: Eir
Game: Shooting the Moon
Episodes: 2
Theme Song: The Sound of Silence by Disturbed
Keywords: Unfaltering, tenacious, unsettling

This week, while I was incredibly sick and still going to events to ensure they happened because I love launching new projects, Rob, Rach, and I decided to play Shooting the Moon from Emily Care Boss' Romance Trilogy. The three of us love urban fantasy fiction, and Rach and I had been writing urban fantasy fiction for Nanowrimo, which we're now reading, so we all had supernatural romance on the brain. But I didn't want to do something stereotypical, like a vampire or a werewolf fighting over someone, I wanted to do something different.

I've been prepping to play a valkyrie in an Urban Shadows game that I'm coming around to facilitating. So Valkyries have been on my mind a lot. I loved the valkyrie in Lost Girl, and so as I was sitting there, in my fevered snotty state, I decided I would try out playing a valkyrie in an urban fant…