We've played two sessions of the Beta playtest rules. I currently have three players. Only one has any extensive experience with Hero System. I've GMed Champions and Hero System, so I have a lot of math chops for the power design. We've had an initial character development by email, a face to face session of finalizing development, and two face-to-face play sessions.
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Since the playtesting phase of Champions Now is wrapping up, I wanted to post a little bit about the game my group has started.
You play a game set in L.A., I tell you what, you’re going to be driving hither & yon a hell of a lot. This session brought us downtown, then to Corona, Venice Beach, the northeast burbs, and eventually to Antelope Valley, in the wilds of Palmdale. There was even a mention of La Fontana over the county border. Almost worthy of a local to sneer, “You ain’t from around here.”
My other Gauntlet game! Unlike the Cosmic Zap session, running Champions of any stripe in a convention setting is no picnic for prep. But the hardest part is not the character construction ... it's the fact that the players will not have the necessary buy-in and sense of "let's do this" per interesting item or opportunity that's inherent to each character. The net effect is that the GM/preparer must be constantly pointing out to them what they can do.
I guess it won’t surprise anyone that Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been tapped again for a Hunted. This time there’s no supervillain component, it’s just (“just”) the agency, so in looking for villains to create, and seeing the Crusader on the Curator’s sheet, I focused on the “trapped between two worlds” feature that both heroes share.
I’ve been resisting the obvious suggestion about defining the superhero group, “set everything ahead of time,” for very good reasons. Most of the trouble that’s cropped up in playtest so far is not due to failing to do that, but directly traceable to introducing a new hero, whose definitions and problems tend to bulk up disproportionately. Introducing a hero even as a limited-only guest throws everything a curve.
A new Champions Now Beta playtest! With Jason and Rick. I told them, "powers are dark, ancient, and secret," and "crimes are moral, not just legal," and we set it in Los Angeles, where Rick lives. (lots of west coast going on in play ... I'll have to keep an eye on that, and make sure of a wider range. I'd really like to set it in Sweden some time!)
Just what the inheritor of the century-old superheroic powers and the sixty-year-old superhero-veteran need: a barely-legal vlogging celebrity hound who claims to be the Bay Area's' own indispensable crime-fightin' hero guy. Meet Komodo Dragon! (and thanks to Rod dropping by to be our entirely enjoyable guest player)
Second session for Legacy, this time ramping the soapy feels for Alan's character, Mike, up to that number you know, and to my great pleasure, outdoing King Cinema Himself in sheer power of the spectacle. "Iconic" doesn't begin to do it justice.