Oh my gods! It is really like hanging out with my 120 closest friends.
So, this year:
First slot: Lady Faiella’s. This is the only recurring and only straight Amber game I’m in. I play Valentina Maria-Helena de Medici, Benedict’s daughter from 12th century Venice. This is the 5th year of this game, I think. The conceit is we’re all teenaged children of the Elders, and have been brought to Amber for our own safety. Last year we saved our tutor/minder from a cult that was trying to sacrifice Corwin’s children. This year we stopped the cult. It is, predominantly, a silly game where we have an excuse to bicker and poke at each other like siblings, and occasionally do things with far reaching ramifications, but mostly it’s the children from the more “permissive” shadows and those of us from the stuffier shadows, squabbling about propriety a lot. It is ridiculously fun.
Second slot: Guns and Glamour. Those of you following along at home know that this is the Powered by the Apocalypse game that I’ve been working on for awhile. I had a breakthrough this year on what I’ve done wrong, and I think I can get this shit turned ready to go once I expand the section on the Lottery Kings and add the section on Gay Culture in 1920s Chicago. One of the players was a human Moll of one of Dion O’Bannion’s lieutenants, who fled to Capone’s guys for protection. She dated a singer, while pining for one of Capone’s lieutenants, who wanted nothing to do with her. We had a Pixie Rumrunner, a Red Cap and Troll Legbreaker duo known as Crunch and Smash, twin Pookhas, one a Hitman and one the aforementioned Entertainer, and the Entertainer’s Brownie Bodyguard. The Moll died about 2/3 of the way through, but by the end of the game so had O’Bannion.
Third Slot: I took this off and chilled on a porch, petted some dogs and read in the autumn sunshine.
Fourth Slot: Supernatural Detective Agency. My friend Charity ran this and it was sooooo cool. If you have listened to the Black Tapes podcast, she made packages of evidence and clues and put them in black VHS tape cases. We solved one mystery, the serial killing of four young men in the Portland, OR area with a fifth due the next day. We had a Nephilim, a Werewolf, a Fae with Hummingbird wings and matching metabolism, a human semi-immortal wizard, a tiny dragon (think Lockheed from Marvel), and my La Llorona character, who had come back to herself with a resurgence of magic. We solved the mystery, saved the college kid, and I only traumatized the dragon once by turning into blood to slip under a door.
Fifth Slot: Guns and Glamour – The Goblin Pixie Gang War. Twelve players, six Goblins, six Pixies, all but two had played the game before. At multiple times during the game, I covered my face with my hands and muttered, “I literally signed on for this.” Two blocks had become available after the death of a Goblin gang, and both the Pixies and the Goblins wanted to “own” this prime real estate, with both a candy store and a butcher on them. It started with a botched Pixie Teamwork roll that triggers a swarm of Pixies that wrecked the candy store, moved on to pamphleting campaigns and several (npc) Pixies being eaten, and then to the Goblins burning down those two blocks AND their own headquarters to spite the Pixies. It ended when the local Sidhe gang leader told them to work it out, and gave them a warehouse in the meat-packing district to share. Oh, and the forbidden love of a Goblin/Pixie star-crossed romance. It was glorious chaos, and they want me to do it again.
I literally signed on for that.
They’d been asking for it for several years, so yeah…
Slot Six: Monster Mavens. I ran all day on Saturday due to a scheduling snafu. No big, but I was exhausted at the end of it, especially since both of those slots are long ones. Monster Mavens was my Monsterhearts/Monster of the Week/K-pop mash up game. I wasn’t sure anyone would sign up for it, honestly. Basically, I gave everyone the Chosen skin from Monsterhearts, had them choose one of the Monster of the Week skins to take a Move from, and then wrote up a J-pop/K-pop style contract, complete with morality clauses, corporate endorsements, weigh-ins, and standards of appearance and behavior for them to follow. Then introduced them to sexy monsters while hunting for Baba Yaga, who turned out to be Feminist Icon Baba Yaga who led them in revolt against the Demon (literal) corporate execs who were exploiting them, and talked them out of wanting to use a love potion on their very gay and very hot PA/camera man. It worked surprisingly well, honestly. My friend Jules played the girl who was secretly a werewolf, and was a fantastically catty teenaged girl for the evening. Charity played Uma, the Divine Avatar of the group who does the best chirpy, “I will CUT YOU,” voice I have ever heard. Louis played Sunny, the bad girl, using a move from the Crooked’s skin. He was also kind of amazing at fitting corporate sponsor names “randomly” into conversation. Daric had a Move from the Spooky’s skin and tried to be the mediator of the group. It really did work way better than I thought it would.
And Slot Seven: The Professionals. The Geek Husband What Rules runs this every so often. There is a McGuffin in the form of a briefcase arriving in Seattle and a bunch of criminals arrive to steal it. Ogre pre-gens the characters using current action heroes. We had Helen Mirren, Gwendolyn Christie, and a whole bunch of names I cannot remember. This year was very different, because he included a character who was the ‘talented amateur,’ and who for the first time in over a decade, opened the briefcase. For the first time we all banded together and split the money, except for the Helen Mirren character who decided to take off with the $2million we’d stolen from the Russian Gangster my character (a bruiser played by Gwendolyn Christie) killed early on. So, that was a lot of fun and chaos.
So, yeah, that was ACNW 2018. Fantastic, so much fun, as always. I did get some complaints about it being next to impossible to get into my games, and the lack of a Weimar era Berlin game this year. Maybe next year. I try not to do recurring games, so maybe I’ll be able to squeak out of having to run the sequel to the Goblin-Pixie Gang War: the Goblin-Pixie Bank Job.
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