Monday, July 26, 2010

Interrupted Plans

We had a short quorum Saturday for the playtest, and the players decided they would rather not run the playtest, so I ran a session of 2 Fisted Tales. This is my go-to game for one-offs, as we have been running it as a serial without the cliffhanger ending. The same characters and background, 1928 New York, but a different plot each time. Last time we ended up in Shangri-La, but this time it centered around Manhattan.

I had absolutely nothing in my head, so I started off with one of the player characters - an ethnic (chinese) sidekick type - walking down the street, being suddenly confronted by a mob guy walking out from an alley. He said something, aimed a .38 at the PC, and fired, but the PC won the contest, using a kind of distance effect chi strike to make the gun go wild. The gangster tried again, but this time the PC made a fantastic roll, and the pistol went flying. A car started up the street, and the PC made an alert check and heard 2 tommy guns being cocked. He ran into the alley and Jackie-Channed his way up to a fire escape as the mobsters in the car unloaded a clip into the alley and took off, picking up the first mobster as they went.

The player couldn't remember what I had said as the mobster aimed, so the rest of teh PCs took him to Dr. Mesmer, a circus hypnotist, who was able to bring the memory to the surface. Since I had nothing at all planned, I let the PC say whatever he wanted. Turns out the Mobster said "This is from McMahon!", which led to the PC confessing he had been hired as a body guard for Mob Boss McMahon's wife, and had ended up sleeping with her.

Eventually, this led to a fight to the death in McMahon's zeppelin, which was picking up opium from a freighter and smuggling it into New York - remember opium was not illegal then, but evading customs duties was - and the group taking out McMahon, his crew, and members of a Chinese tong who were going partners with McMahon.

The game was awesome, but the reason it was awesome was that the players made it awesome. From the beginning, they were making stuff up and my job was making some sense of it all. The 2 Fisted Tales system also rocks on toast, which just made it all the better.

Sometimes the best plans are the ones that never happen.


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