What will they think of next?
A time honored dilemma of GMs everywhere is trying to figure out what those annoying PCs are going to do next session so that you can plan adequately for it. I generally try to only plan for the various pieces of information that will be available for them to find without worrying too much about how they will find that information. This method frees me up a bit in session by allowing me to adjust to their ever changing assortment of crazy schemes.
For example, recently my players ended a session on the decision to storm the antagonist’s headquarters. I won’t lie to you, this was a bad plan. It did have the charm of being a plan I was ready for them to execute however. (I do so love the word “execute”!)
Instead they decided to kidnap one particular antagonist in the middle of Central Park. It being Central Park, no bystanders reacted to this event. (It helped that they had a Fate Mage to help steer people away from the area.) This I was completely unprepared for. So was the antagonist in question, who promptly botched her sense motive roll (WITS+EMPATHY) and convinced herself that they were ready to talk. (See: The Hits Just Keep On Coming) Now I have to start my session with the players holding an NPC in the Consilium prison. This causes much more work behind the scenes than the players realize (grumble grumble grumble), and leaves me wondering what their next move is.
Interrogating the prisoner would seem to be an obvious next step… but not necessarily to these guys. After all, the last time they captured an antagonist alive they wound up finding out that he had let loose a Goetic Demon in a park in upstate NY and they never did get around to asking him where in this many acre park he might have left it. That would have made way too much sense! Instead they decided to go to this park and just wander around until they stumbled across it with no idea what its bans might be. Sadly, I had planned on them interrogating the antagonist, finding out some interesting things about him and his goals (and the origins of one of the other PCs who had no memory of her past), and then going off to take care of the Goetic Demon. Instead I had to improvise and ask them precisely how a group of 6 people without a single Resource Dot between them intended to get to upstate NY and hilarity ensued. (You’ll have to remind me to post that tale here at some point… it was more than a little hysterical.)
So interrogation… not necessarily. They may decide to actually SPEAK with the prisoner, but since all she wanted to do was talk to them in the first place (and look how that wound up) this seems highly unlikely. I do have one player (a Moros Mage) advocating to kill her and interrogate her ghost… which does sort of qualify as an interrogation and could get interesting on many levels.
Another interesting option has been proposed by her Mastigos ex-husband who is contemplating taking a stroll through her Oneiros. (For the non-Mage players that would be her personal dream space – her unconscious mind) This is an extremely interesting idea that I actually like a lot, and I’m hoping to get a bead on what areas of her Oneiros he’ll be specifically looking for so I can make them suitably awesome. (Damien – I’m looking at you.) I actually have a solid back story for this character already since she is a a PCs ex-wife which makes her a pretty important character.
You never can tell what my Obrimos Guardian of the Veil will do (for the record, I totally blame my power outages this week on Argus!), and my Thyrsus Silver Ladder is convinced that the missing kid-sister of Aenaiyah the Acanthus is being held in a little town in upstate NY named Arcadia. (Don’t think I haven’t thought about how hilarious it would be should he be right!) Neils won’t be there this time around, which means I will have to come up with some awful reason why his character isn’t there. (Mua-Haa-Haaa!) My remaining Moros Mage (an Adamantine Arrow) worries me in that I have not heard him weigh in on what they should do with her just yet. This can only lead to madness.
And then of course there’s a little something that my favorite Time Mage has which could yield some interesting results. I had only considered the implications of this as I was leaving the house for the last session, and I came up with the most wonderful possible result before I reached the game store. It really would be fun on many levels – for the whole family!
No matter what happens, it should prove to be an extremely interesting session!
Posted on September 2, 2011, in Gaming, Mage Awakening, MtAw, RPG, White Wolf, WoD, World of Darkness and tagged Gaming, Mage the Awakening, MtAw, nWoD, rpg, tabletop RPG, WoD, world of darkness. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.
Not entirely true about the lack of Resource dots, by the way. Neils had a dot in Resources. (Yes, the character without a real job or well-off parents had the only Resources dot in the group.)
Anyway, I’m really looking forward to finding out how badly everything goes next session…
If it comes into play, Neils wouldn’t really feel right about executing her. But I could see him being easily distracted by a discussion about some obscure bit of magical lore while it was done a couple of rooms away…
Did you have a resource dot at that point? Oh… that’s right, thats how you guys rented the Mystery Machine, I mean moving van, to get you to the park.
I can’t wait to tell you how badly everything goes! I’m sure I can figure out some way to keep Neils distracted if I want him to be.
I think I actually have resources now, too. But it made sense for me not to have them when I was fresh off the boat with no working papers and whatnot.
Oh, *do* tell the story of the Goetic Demon. How we defeated it NEVER gets old.
P.S. No, I’m probably not going to use what I know you want me to use. Even though I have the b***h’s true name now.
I may have to make the story of the Goetic Demon my next post.
Interrogation? I could be useful at that. Life Magic has some rather interesting things that could be leveraged in our favor. 🙂
Perhaps Life Magic could have some interesting applications… if the Moros Mage doesn’t kill the prisoner first.
She’ll be fine. Not gonna let any one kill her. I’ll pull rank if I need to. These things happen when the consilium sends a Silver Ladder to your door.
My God… is it possible? One of my players is prepared to do something heroic?!?! How did this happen?
Remember that despite being the only person with an admittedly criminal background, I’m also the only apparently good guy on the “Good Guy” team. 🙂
I know I’ve stated it out-of-game and it hasn’t really come up in game yet but as the sessions go on it seems more and more to me that Arrow is not a killer. Last session, everything I did was to contain the situation.
Sure he’ll swipe your wallet and run a $400 tab at the bar on your credit card… I just don’t see him overtly slaughtering people unless its utterly necessary.
Simple logic will prevent the killing–with her alive, we can ransom her back. Once she’s dead. . . well, I think they’ll see through the necromatic golem.
Also, so long as she IS alive there’s ALWAYS the option to kill her. You can’t really go back from dead.
I will state, for the record, that someone may need to restrain the Acanthus. The idea of Betsy the Changeling is not so appealing to her.
What’s wrong with Betsy the Changeling? She’ll have cool new powers that don’t cause paradox… what could be wrong with that?
And anyway, maybe she really was talking about a little town in upstate NY…