I am proud to announce the Full Moon Quickstart Advanture: Stir Crazy, now available through DriveThruRPG.
Stir Crazy is a 14-page PDF that includes quickstart rules, pregenerated character that can be customized by your players, and a short adventure. For just $2, it's everything you need to have an adventure on the lunar frontier.
Backers have already received a download link, but if you missed the chance to support the Kickstarter, you can get a taste of Full Moon now by picking up Stir Crazy at DriveThruRPG.
I recently saw Looper, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis as the same man at different ends of his own adulthood. This was a movie that I was looking forward to very much based on the trailer. Unfortunately, I was ultimately disappointed because the movie that I was promised by that trailer was not the one that was delivered to me.
I won't spoil the movie here, but if you've seen the trailer or any of the promotions, you know that Looper is being sold as a kind of gangster movie with time travel. That was the movie I wanted to see. And the first act of the movie gave me just that, with the addition of Gordon-Levitt doing a flawless impersonation of Willis.
But as Looper progressed into its second act, it introduced a twist that skewed it away from the gangster film-with-time travel concept. With this extra element, the film began to drag under its own weight. It tried to do too much.
Let's tie this into gaming, since this blog is ostensibly about games.
When you are pitching a campaign to your players, you have to be honest. Even if you know the campaign will feature a big twist or reveal that will create drama and tension, you should be honest with the players that such a thing is going to happen early in the game. If you don't, you will face justifiable blowback as the players were expecting one game and got another.
The classic example of this is a campaign where the characters are taken from one world (or section of a world) and stranded in another: shipwreck on a jungle island; modern humans transported to a fantasy world; folks abducted by aliens and thrust into a wider galaxy. If that's the campaign, tell them. You may lose some of what you think is cool about the twist, but the game will go more smoothly for it.
On the other side of the coin, as a player, you should work within the GM's campaign. If the GM is being honest with you, you know what the game is going to be like. When you are making your character, work within the boundaries of that game. If you do that, and the other players do that, you will avoid unnecessary conflicts at the start of the game. Conflict should exist among characters, not between characters and the campaign itself.
Jamie is playing in a new Full Moon campaign, and she needs to create her character. She spends some time thinking about a character concept. She wants to play a character who has come to the moon to help people, someone whose past led her to work toward a brighter future. She decides that her character will be a nun who has opened a shelter in the community that provides relief to those down on their luck.
Sister Lois (as Jamie names her character) is good at reading people, a very handy skill when dealing with addicts and criminals. Before she took her vows, Lois was in the military. She has seen her share of violence as well as the kind of people that profit from it. It made her sick and drove her off Earth. Still, she has kept her fighting skills sharp, and she knows a bit of field medicine as well.
With this concept in mind, Jamie looks at the skill list. She knows her highest skills will be Protocol and Fighting, and she wants a decent Medicine skill as well. She decides to use the suggested array of skills. She puts her Great rating in Fighting, and her two Good ratings in Protocol and Medicine.
For her two Fair ratings, Jamie takes Persuasion (for talking her clients through their problems) and Athletics (as Lois keeps herself in good shape). Her three Average skills go into Investigation (as she is just generally alert), as well as Mechanics and Survival (left over from her military training). This leaves Lois with Mediocre ratings in Infiltration, Scholarship, and Vehicles.
Thinking about it some more, Jamie decides to lower her Fighting to Good and her Medicine to Fair. This gives her two skill points back to buy Specialties and Stunts. She likes the idea of being able to size up groups as well as individuals, so Jamie buys the Human Terrain stunt for her Protocol skill. She wants to hone Lois' combat skills, making her more defensive, so she also buys the Ballistic Probabilities stunt for Fighting. Finally, she buys a Fighting specialty in Rifles and a Protocol specialty in Bullshit Detection, giving her an extra +1 with those skills when the specialties apply.
Jamie thinks about her Aspects for a while. She wants them to be evocative and interesting, but not too complicated to explain. Her first aspect sums up her core concept, World-Wise Nun. Another aspect speaks of her background in the military, which she writes down as Hoorah! Sister Lois wants to help people, because she believes Everyone Can Be Saved. Unfortunately, she still has a cynical streak, because The World is Full of Assholes. Jamie decides to leave her final aspect undefined until the other players have finished their characters. That way, she can forge a connection to another character with a mechanical benefit.
Jamie finishes up by noting that the refresh rate is 5. She jots down any mundane equipment she thinks Sister Lois would have (a rifle, for instance), as well as a brief description of the sister herself.