Sunday, December 29, 2013

Better Angels, episode one

Yesterday was our first session of Better Angels; we made characters back here.

So, mostly we just talked about the game and the system. I finally read through the rest of the game, and I'm getting a handle on it. We also got out some M&Ms and used them to shift dots around, because it happens often. Check it out:


After I explained sets and width and height and all, we talked about the characters' demons and what they wanted. We decided to set the game in Atlanta, and then someone mentioned "The Devil Came Down to Georgia," and I had my game idea.

We opened in Olympic Park, in the summer, fountains going. Livi is splashing in the fountain, and Arvo is walking around with the socks off, too, enjoying the water. Gary is getting a hot dog at a street vendor (and scoping the parking lot for cars to steal), and Willa is sitting on a park bench reading a book. As of now, Baal (Willa's demon) cannot see what's going on because her Open is higher than her Sly, but the rest of the demons are at least able to see what's going on, and they recognize each other.

And then, from atop a nearby building, a BOOM! Something comes hurtling toward the park, and a man's body smashes into the ground. The demons realize he's a Hellbinder (or at least, he was). Gary invokes his demon, Mammon. Livi, afraid, asks for help from her demon (Glasya-Labolas), and he activates her Giant Aspect. Willa invokes Baal, and he recognizes the demons...and then notes an angel incoming.

The superhero flying in toward them is The Radiant, a strong, beautiful being with a sword of light. Gary zips over to the body to loot it, and finds a golden fiddle underneath it. He tries to pick it up, but it burns his flesh. The Radiant sees this and tells him to unhand it, and swoops down...and realizes that he's a Hellbinder. Gary, now in his alter ego as The Jock, shows his claws and roars in defiance.

Baal, meanwhile, unleashes Willa's wings, and she takes to the air to get a better view. She flails as the Radiant goes by and damages him.

Arvo wakes up Nidhogg, and asks for help. Nidhogg agrees (Master Die), if Arvo scares a little boy on the way over. Arvo, assuming his villain persona of The Ice-Man, destroys a tree with Wither and points at the boy, who wets himself and flees.

Livi sees the fiddle, grabs it and tries to run. This upsets the Radiant, but the Radiant has other problems. He strikes the Jock, but the Jock hits back with claws and Ice-Man grapples the hero, using Wither on him. This destroys the hero, his body crumbling into nothing (Jock notes that the Radiant had existing wounds, so whoever the Hellbinder was that had the fiddle must have hurt him). But with his last bit of energy, the Radiant points at the fiddle...and it vanishes.

Willa swoops into the crowd and drops, using Dead Ringer to assume the form of a random stranger. Jock sprints across the street and grabs a guy out of his sports car, zooming off. Ice-Man asks Nidhogg for invisibility, and vanishes.

Livi, though, has trouble. She's afraid and confused. Glasya-Labolas cuts her Giant power, but she isn't sure what to do. She tries to assume her komodo dragon form, but fails, and finally just cries as people close in (she weeps and wails and convinces them that she's not really a villain, and runs off to find her mother).

But the demons inform their humans - that fiddle is just banished. It's somewhere in the city. And someone playing it can command a demon to do anything, including abandon a host.

The characters aren't the only ones who are going to be looking for it, of course.