Friday, May 10, 2013

RPG campaign seed idea Heroes by Gaslight

I once was heavily into the Heroes show.  Which is odd as I have never been a super heroes fan.  I mean being handicapped with my kidney disease I have Daredevil or Gary Coleman.  I decided to watch Different strokes and on the right track.  I even voted for him for governor, sounds crazy but rolling blackouts occurred while I was on dialysis and had to hand pump my blood back.  I thought he was the only candidate who understood my concern.

Back to Heroes I really loved the idea of them not knowing they had the powers.  Then i saw this picture of spectre the green lantern and it really got my gaming blood going.  I thought of the spectre as some sort of watchman in the gas light time keeping people safe from robbers.  That all merged into the basic ideas of a game that didn't go far enough.

The game was set in Victorian England and featured a cast of Heroes that were unsure of their powers.  They were unsure because I told them we were just playing a gas light era game and I was using D & D to take care of the rules.  They didn't know I had bought the Mutants and Masterminds books and had a who big game in mind.

The characters seemed to be a doctor from France named Fragonard who had been disgraced and now made a living selling corpses to various medical facilities.  We also had a down on his luck whaler named Gustaf Johansen.  There was a British Soldier named Arthur Batten-Poole trying to keep order on a night that was going awry.  And finally Lady Frost who was out for the evening at the symphony.

I set the campaign with the players divided, the doctor and the whaler where busy robbing a graveyard.  Poole was proving assistance to the constabulary and Lady Frost was nearby in a coach.  Quickly the grave robbers were approached by a fleeing figure dressed at the spring heeled jack and being shot at by the police.  The figure ran past and police rapidly approached the pair .  They ran!  Lady Frosts coach was attacked and the jack got control of the reigns.  Batten-Poole mad a quick foot chase,  The others were able to flee the church yard but were attacked on foot by the Jack whom they chased.  This jack joined the other on the coach while the pair hijacked a second coach.  Batten-Poole was now climbing atop Lady Frost's coach attacking the Jack.  Finally both coaches met and locked wheels in a glorious struggle.  Forcing the break and working the reigns the Jacks finally turned the coaches over a bridge into the Tames.

I resolved the night with a few checks for swimming and cold effect.  I made note to leave out the whaler for the swimming and Lady Frost for the cold.  This was the first of my revealing their powers.   And would be my last as the game seemed to never find another session.  It was intended as a game between games but never really found a ground and I am not sure if folks were interested.

This never going anywhere is why I am presenting the game to you.  I hoped someone else could have fun with it.  My scenario was to use the Spring Heeled Jack as a conspiracy of batman like foes for the heroes.  They would be run by a lord of some sort who was a werewolf.  I didn't get much beyond this point by my ideas were based on the fact that don't know of an evil version of batman and my hatred of DC villains that are masterminds but can never seem to physically defeat the hero.  The werewolf/druid idea came as a hope to have a smart villain that could also be dangerous.

The eventual powers I was planning on revealing to the players were going to come out in bits and pieces.  Lady Frost was immune to cold and could turn water into ice.   From here she was sort of a creator of objects and could turn water into anything she wanted even armor for herself.   The whaler was sort of the king of the sea, if his ankles were in water he was very strong and had knowledge of all ships and operation he could even pull in a whale himself sort of Poseidon or Popeye.  Arthur Batten-Poole could control time and create a singularity around himself or someone else.  The good doctor was actually very close to the realm of the dead seeing Death frequently and able to talk to spirits.  He could also heal by  taking damage onto himself and harm by shifting it from himself to another. 

My last "Hero" who never ended up with a play oddly enough was Johnathan Harkness esq.  I was planning this guy as a hero who becomes the big bad guy in the end.  His power was he wouldn't die and pretty much that is it. It was sort of like Heroes where the stick had to be removed from your brain or he had to be pulled out of water but he wouldn't die.  The thing was he didn't have the power to heal, he just got more and more screwed up.  He had normal human healing so things would eventually heal and he could graft on parts but that was it.  The idea was to have a very grim hero after awhile and then have him realize he could graft himself back to life.  Eventually he would realize some grafts were better than others, the hulks arms or the flashes legs for example.  He would then serve as a menace and be my new big bad guy.

Take my campaign see and do as you like gentle reader.  Let me know if you do anything extra cool though.

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