Mar. 27th, 2012


Mar. 27th, 2012 04:30 pm
innocent_man: (woola)
So last night my players made characters for our Mars FATE game. A little explanation.

Leverage ended not long ago (I still owe you a post on that, actually), as did (for now) Hunter. Everyone was fine with me continuing to be the GM each week (the other option was Michelle, but she wants to wait until summer), which is fine with me. We chose Promethean, and Sarah requested FATE. I didn't want to run another Dresden game (since I'm running one already), so one option that was brought up was doing a riff on John Carter. Interestingly, my first exposure to FATE was in a Burroughs-inspired game at Origins a few years back, and that was awesome, so I knew this would be good.

I wanted the game to be the final chapter in an ongoing story, so I tweaked character creation a little. Instead of Phases 4 and 5 being guest starring in someone else's novel, instead the players worked together to design the first two novels in our "trilogy." We'll actually play through the last one, then.

Oh, and for source material I used the Mars RPG from Adamant Entertainment, which is written for the Savage Worlds system, but eh. We just tweaked as we went (f'rex, my players weren't a fan of Red Martians being egg-layers).

The players decided that the Red Martians had formed this Roman-like civilization in which the ruling class is decadent and hyper-sexual (and nearly naked most of the time), and they rode out from the city of Xenon and "unified" all the other Red city-states. They made war on the White Apes of the Northern Jungles and the Green Men of the wastelands, and now they control the canals of mars with iron, well-lubed fists.

Our characters:

  • Justin Wallace is an Earthman who grew up on the carny circuit, the son of a medium and an acrobat. He got caught in a runaway rocket experiment and got launched to Mars (Aspect: Human Physiology and Can't Fake Showmanship). He crash-landed into a Red army as they were about to destroy the Green Man village of Angstrom (Aspect: Right Place, Wrong Time), earning him the title (and Aspect) Missippipi, Hero of Angstrom. His novel is Prisoner of the Red Mind, in which he is trapped in the prison of the Red Vizier...only to escape with the help of the Green Martian's ghostly ancestors. Aspects: The South Don't Know How to Quit and FREEEDOM!!!!.
  • Prince Xax was, as the name suggests, a prince. He was born the son of the Ape-Emperor, and grew up in idle scholarly pursuit while his ape-subjects took care of the city (Aspects: Familiarity Breeds Contempt and Smarter Than the Average Ape). His father traded with Xenon, but eventually the "Space Romans" (as we took to calling them) decided they'd rather just annihilate the apes and take what they wanted. Xax fled the city as it fell (Aspects: Take the Money and Run and Last Scion of the White Apes). His novel is Long Live The King, in which Xax faces off against Garus, his father's former general. Both apes take half the surviving White Apes to try and strike against Xenon - or each other (Aspects: Slow to Anger and Gorilla Chieftain).
  • Elitza Kutit was a Red Martian tailor, from a line of tailors, and grew up Known About Town for her eye for detail and Little Miss Craftypants. The Xenon Empire came calling and relocated her family to the capital city. She chose to stay behind with her lover (because There's No Place Like Home)...whom the Xenon soldiers killed. She escaped them, plotting revenge Best Served Cold. Her novel is Black Moons Rising, in which Elitza finds her family in Xenon, but they've been happily naturalized. Disillusioned, she finds a bunch of rebels at a bar and joins up with them to heist a box of rare, obsidian jewels from Xenon - resulting in fame and notoriety for her as a thief (Aspects: Rally the Troops! and This is Mine Nao!)
  • Gar Loma is a Red Martian farmer and brewer from the city of Argon. His father was city militia (Military Brat), while his mother was a disgraced noble (Sins of the Mother). Continued tax hikes from Xenon drove his family's farm out of business, and the Empire took it over, leading him to swear Vengeance! for what they did to the Loma Breweries. His novel, Give Me to Drink, tells how Gar began guerrilla attacks on Red patrols, and eventually kills a decorated officer in the Xenon army (Aspects: "I have a new trade now." and Officer's Integer Pistol)
  • Reana Maris is the daughter of a Red nobleman who was an ambassador to the Green Men. When Xenon took over, she and her father returned to the Red cities to find that the Empire was now poised to destroy the Green Men (Aspects: It's not Easy Being Green and Regis Stavis Maris). The tribe that had hosted them was, in fact, wiped out, and her best friend Ka'breks body was taken back to Xenon like a trophy. Reana steals the Crystal of Sab'rek, and dedicates herself to leading the Greens to freedom. She is thereafter known (among the Reds) as Green Reana). Her novel is Rise of the Emerald Dawn, in which she sets out to unite the Green tribes under her leadership. The moot is attacked by General Keltan Lasik, the commander of the Xenon Air Force. Reana leads the Greens to battle and defeats him (though he escapes). Aspects: "Of course, you know, this means war." and Tiny But Fierce.

So then we have our first collaborative novel, Enemy of My Enemy. Elitza steals the Crystal of Sab'rek and flees with it, only to pop up between Gar's freedom fighters and Xax' White Apes, who have just wiped out a Red platoon. Reana catches up, but Justin, speaking with the ghost of Ka'Brek, negotiates peace (and Reana trusts him after Ka'pla, Ka'brek's "dog", adopts Justin). Reana also learns that the Crystal holds some strange destiny for her, tied with the Green Men. Together, the characters muster their forces and with the White Ape engineering put to use to make anti-aircraft devices, they take back the city of Argon from the Empire of Xenon!


  • Justin: Speaker for the Dead Martians and Ka'pla, the Space Dog
  • Prince Xax:Let Me Think On It and Today Argon, Tomorrow Mars!
  • Elitza: Didn't Think This Through and I meant to do that!
  • Gar: "Run them down! and Hometown Hero
  • Reana: Why Am I the Mother of Dragons? and You Can't Go Home Again

Our second novel is The Red Prince of Argon. Here, the characters lead their armies to Nexus, a canal hub, and destroy it, causing chaos and drawing troops away from Xenon. But then they return to Argon and discover it's been taken back - the man they left charge has betrayed them and worked with the Empire to set a trap! Justin is captured, and the others get onto a boat, but General Lasik destroys it, leaving them for dead. Gar floats downstream and winds up at a monastery, surrounding by silent, hooded monks and bearing a prosthetic arm. Elitza and Xax are together, briefly, but Xax heads into the jungles and Elitza goes to Xenon to blend into the crowd. There, she meets the Master of Chains, the head of the Thieves of Xenon, who want no part of the revolution (it's bad for business). Reana, meanwhile, winds up at the canal's end, in the desert, where she discovers the Temple of the Red Goddess and has a visionquest - she must come to terms that she is Red, not Green. Eventually Xax finds the forbidden Temple of the White Apes - where Gar is being held. He learns the White Ape secret of combat, and he and Gar (who has been taught the White Ape secrets of alchemy), head back to the wastes, where he meets up with Reana. Elitza, meanwhile, has found Ka'pla, and knows that Justin is in Xenon somewhere. Justin, meanwhile, has been kept prisoner, forced to speak to the spirits of the dead Red Martians...but plied with all the comforts that Xenon has to offer.


  • Justin: The Past Lives in Me and Mars Women Need...
  • Xax: Apes Don't Float and Walk Without Rhythm
  • Elitza: Black Moons Rise and Master of Chains Got me Hooked
  • Gar: White Ape Engineered Arm and Alchemical Potions
  • Reana: Temple of the Red Goddess and Blue Blood

So going into our third and final "novel," Justin is still a prisoner of the Empire. Elitza, masked and hidden, waits in the city of Xenon - watched over in a none-too-friendly way by the Master of Chains. Reana, confused by her own identity and trying to reconcile her true nature with her adopted people, waits with the erstwhile Prince of the White Apes and the bloody-minded Gar outside the city. Join us in four weeks (because we haven't done Skills or Stunts yet, so that'll be next time) for...The Armies of Mars!

Points, then. )


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