Thursday, March 15, 2012

Down These Mean (Virtual) Streets

The inaugural session of my Google+ Weird Adventures game got off to a shaky start last night, plagued by several technical difficultes: we had sound issues, got kicked out of the hangouts, and had one would be player appear briefly and indistinctly like the monster reveal in a found footage horror film, before winking out never to return.

Still, I'm optimistic Lorefinder (the Pathfiner/GUMSHOE mashup) is going to work well for our purposes, and there was enthusiasm from the players despite the difficulties.

So far, the facts in the case are as follows:

A (self-styled) gentleman thief, a dapper wizard, and a bruiser of an urban ranger took a simple job for celebrity detective Heward Kane:

Kane was working for Viviane Vandemaur, a greiving widow, who was trying to take custody of the body of her dear departed husband, John.  John Vandemaur's Old Money family had never like his wife from the wrong side of the Eldritch River and had had him interred in the family crypt on Barrow Island against her wishes.  Viviane wanted her husband's remains moved a place of her choosing and had managed to get a judge to allow it.  Of course, that was only if the deed could be done before the Vandemaur family got word and put pressure on the legal system to change its mind.

So why hire three adventure-types?  Well, it seems there's been a bit of unrest out on Barrow Island.  Some sort of ghoul incursion.  The possibility of trouble.

Complicating matters even further, there's a debutante gone wild run off with a ghoul bad-boy.  What are the chances this wayward young lady is on the island, too?

I'd say pretty good--and the chance that it will mean more trouble for our heroes is also pretty good.

And what about that gargoyle the party caught sight off?  Was it shadowing them?  And why?

Stay tuned.


The Angry Lurker said...

The beginning of a good adventure and shenanigans.....

Justin S. Davis said...

What IS it with debutantes and their ghoul bad-boys, anyway?

The jackets? The motorcycles? The pomade?

Just goes to show that nice ghouls always finish last.

Gothridge Manor said...

Maybe next time you will be more carefully when mentioning the Canadian Internet. From what I heard, they are the new Illuminati.

Fnord, eh.

Pat said...

I was blowing Charm points on grave-diggers when there's ghoul-smitten hotties needing a better class of boyfriend? My priorities need some adjusting!

Chris C. said...

That sounds extremely cool. A very intriguing start to the campaign.

Trey said...

@Angry Lurker - I imagine there will be shennanigans a-plenty.

@Justin - It's just one of those things, ya know? And have you been peeking at my game notes? Your knowledge of ghoul hoodlums is uncanny! ;)

@Tim - Live and learn. :)

@Pat - Ha! Maybe. But I suspect this dame is nuthin' but trouble.

@Bard - Thanks!

garrisonjames said...

Wow. Simply wow. Wish we were set-up with a web-cam now...

migellito said...

Gah! You played your game on G+ and I missed it!? If you have a notification list or something of the like, please add me to it :)

Trey said...

Will do, Michael. :)

Canageek said...

Been working my way through Weird Adventures. Loving the writing (Hell Syndicate is my favourite so far), pictures and physical book.

Typesetting is driving me mad, looks like it was laid out in word.
Considering writing a full review, but I am worried my obession with typesetting would make it sound more negative then this excellent book deserves.

Trey said...

The layout was down in InDesign.

I guess you have three choices: (1) you can indulge your obsession and write a review which you aknowledge would be unfair and not representative of other's experiences, (2) you can write a fair review by excercising restrain over your obsession, or (3) you can write no review at all.

I'd prefer you do (2), but you should decide what you think is best.

Canageek said...

I might write a non-review (i.e. Go buy this damn book) as I really suck at reviews, then go do a post on typesetting in RPGs, using some of the examples from your book, and others (The 3e players handbook had some even worse examples then yours actually).

If you publish anything else: I'm pretty sure inDesign can do margin protrusion, make sure to turn that on. (Page 4 of this pdf shows what I mean; It is for a diffrent typesetting system, my beloved LaTeX, so you'd have to look up how to do this in inDesign.)

Also manually check your spacing; See final paragraph pg11, 1st line, final paragraph pg 13.
What font did you use? It isn't bad, but I'd go for size 11 (Book standard), over what looks like a size 12 (Standard on computers since early printers couldn't do size 11 well); your publisher seems to do a very nice job printing so take advantage of it. This would also greatly reduce your problems with justification and spaces, since the problem is being created by the really small lines, which exaggerate the issues. More text per line gives even a bad line-by-line algorithm more to work with.

I think the comic font in the sidebars works quite well, and I'm hoping I didn't just praise comic sans; As much of a typography geek as I am, I've never developed a skill at visually recognizing fonts.
They grey sidebars in my copy didn't come out so well; you might want to try something else with your next book.

The writing so far has been quite good, though I've not been able to get very deeply in. Borea was a bit bland, but then again, so has very RPG description of Canada I've ever seen, with the partial exception of Rifts, which didn't really get things right. I've really liked the bit on the hell syndicate, though I thought the table of mutations was too obvious; I'd probably write my own, more subtle version of it.

Trey said...

I'll pass on your comments to the guy who did the layout in InDesign. If you can't tell the difference between comic sans and that title font, I'd say your font discrimination is pretty bad. :)

I'm sorry Borea section didn't grab you, but maybe what you were wanting from it is different than what my idea of the setting needs from it. You can always detail was much as you like for your own game.

If you want to run down each section and tell me what you would do differently, I'd love to read it on your blog.