Posted: August 14, 2010 in Gaming

As noted earlier, I had planned on talking a little about my Deadlands game.  For those not in the know, Deadlands is a role-playing game (I’m gonna assume you either know what that is or can find a suitable wikipedia entry) set in 1875ish North America.  This means just after the Civil War, but I’m hoping you knew that too.  It’s a bit of revisionist history in that shortly before the battle of Gettysburg, a group of Native American Indians broke a pact with the nature spirits and released demons and monsters back into the world.  This naturally leads to all sorts of supernatural hijinx.  At the same time, a new super-fuel called Ghost Rock surfaces.  It burns 100 times hotter and longer than coal, and enables all sorts of crazy mechanical devices to work.  This is the birth of Mad Science.  As you can imagine, the Union and the Confederacy get into a brand spanking new arms race.  This drags the Civil War out into a cold war.  The “Wild West” becomes the “Wierd West,” the country remains divided and disputed, and the governments set up monster-hunting agencies.  Meanwhile, all the romanticized gunfighters and outlaws now have added supernal power making them larger than life.  The average gunslinger could now be bested by a gentile who gambles with demons for the use of otherworldly power, and a hellfire-and-brimstone preacher may shepherd his flock with not-even-a-little-bit-subtle divine assistance.  Sounds fun, huh?

Before I get into the particulars of my story in this world, I’d like to point out something.  I already know someone is gonna spot familiar story elements or names.  Believe me when I tell you I’m aware of this.  I don’t think it’s necessary to be 100% original 100% of the time.  I DO think it’s necessary to tell a good story.  When I take an idea, it’s because I think I can either present it in a new way, or because I think that even if it’s recognized, I’ll be telling it in a way that is still exciting and interesting.  Yeah, the little town my players are in is called Darkness Falls.  No, it’s not haunted by a demented tooth fairy.  I liked the name and had a good reason for using it.  That’s as far as it goes.

I’d like to wrap up by introducing you to the cast of my little play.  First, there is Soapy Vermillion, played by Chris.  Soapy is not the character’s real name, but it is a colorful moniker well suited to a gunfighter.  He’s got a foul mouth and a nervous tic that we’d call Tourette’s syndrome today.  Every night his dreams are haunted by horrifying glimpses of the past or the future.  Soapy also dabbles in the use of hexes to supplement his already-lethal six-gun.  Next is Lazy John Hancock, played by Nick.  Lazy John is an enormously fat alcoholic gambler with gaping holes in his memory.  He isn’t much of a gunman, but he’s got more than a little practice tricking those demons into giving him powers beyond that of your average cardsharp.  Third is Dr. Peter Louvre, played by Milan.  Peter is a crack shot with a rifle, and is always trying to build a better mousetrap.  Carter Slade, played by David, is a gun for hire who so far hasn’t told anyone much about anything.  Last, but not least is Kate McCormick, played by Sara.  Kate is an entertainer of gentlemen with a strange wanderlust.  She’s probably the sanest of the bunch, and certainly the easiest on the eyes.

I know this is getting a bit long-winded, so I’ll wrap up here.  Sara has been writing a journal from the perspective of her character, and I’ll see about making that available on SkyDrive soon.


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