Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Coming to an End

Sunday was the last game in our Woodstock campaign. The campaign was set in an alternate Woodstock, NY... in a world in which Dylan collaborated with the concert organizers and Woodstock was actually, well, held in Woodstock. In the game-world, a lot of people actually stayed there, and Woodstock is now a thriving city.

The game was in the urban fantasy genre. Specifically, it featured faeries... which were very loosely defined to include things like lake monsters and bigfoot. We used a modified version of FATE rules (from Spirit of the Century) to run it.

I'll write more about the setting in another post. I want to write about the end of the campaign.

Angela and I were co-GMing the game. This was both good and bad.

The Good: Planning was fun. It was great to have someone to bounce ideas off of... and to remind me of things I forgot. In play, it was nice to be able to split the PCs up without forcing some of the to sit around and wait.

The Bad: We weren't telepathic. The style of game we both prefer depends on a lot of improvisation... and neither of us felt fully free to improvise wildly for fear of stepping on the toes of the other.

Ultimately, I found running games to be frustrating. A big part of what I like about GMing is the improvisational aspects.

Right. The end.

It wasn't the end we'd planned on. We planned out a conspiracy that the PCs would gradually discover. We even had our own Cigarette Smoking Man (a bigfoot). Unfortunately, we ran out of time. We were alternating weeks with Jenn's D&D game (which I'm enjoying a lot), and we have an impending move coming up (we're headed to DC). We realized we'd never have time to fully develop what we wanted to develop.

On the other hand, we didn't want to leave the players hanging. (When we last left them, they were dressed as Power Rangers and mock-fighting a faerie-pleisiosaur named Tatoskok in an abandoned rock quarry.)

So we changed the ending. We expected the new ending to take two games to wrap up. It took one (but we ran later than normal). I hope it provided some closure. We let the PCs beat up on some villains who had escaped them early on. They revealed their boss (who they'd be frustrated with) as a traitor (or at least a slave to a faerie noble) after rescuing him from kidnappers. One of the PCs ended up controlling an army of ghosts (through some manuevering that we totally didn't see coming). The others gained a new-found purpose.

It certainly wasn't a bad end... but I still feel a bit of regret for what didn't happen...

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