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Thread: Advice For My First Game

  1. #1
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    Advice For My First Game

    ATTN: IF YOU ARE CURRENTLY IN A PARTY WITH CRIMSON JACK, STOP READING.

    I'm going to be starting my very first M&M game here pretty soon, and I'm hoping that some of the awesome GMs around here will help me pass the idea ball around (most of my normal roleplaying buddies don't like supers).

    Intro:

    So I have three heroes: a zombie, a shapeshifter, and a detective with the ability to control metal. I want our first session to start off with something exciting, so my idea is to have a gang war break out in one of the seedier districts of my city setting. The gangs are more well armed than they should be, because this is a superhero game, and it is all the police can do to hold the line. First responders have been pinned down, and there are many civilians in harm's way. Our heroes begin by receiving this information through their various media sources, and race to the scene. My players have all agreed to this, so no one man alpha wolf packs.

    The Gangs:

    The gangs consist of "The Dead Men" (heavily armed street thugs), and "The Salamanders" (hi-tech ninjas with flamethrowers). Both are offshoots of larger crime organizations. The younger sister of the Salamander leader is in love with the leader of the Dead Men; obviously, this cannot stand! Finally having had enough, the Salamander leader takes a group of his forces to Dead Men turf, hoping to convince his sister to come home, or bring her back by force.

    Meanwhile, the sister, who possesses a promising amount of magical ability (but no experience), has been given a ritual by a mysterious figure. She has been told that it has power to cease the hostilities between the two gangs. However, when it goes off in the HQ of the Dead Men, just the opposite happens: both gangs are suddenly filled with an uncontrollable rage and bloodlust. The fighting begins in the streets as assault rifle wielding hooligans take on fire throwing ninjas.

    The Twist:

    The ritual was a ruse by the mysterious figure to set up this little slug fest. As of right now, I'm not sure why, but nonetheless all of these people are being magically forced into fighting and killing one another.

    I'm still trying to figure out who the mysterious figure is, but the zombie player did leave me this tidbit in his backstory:

    Sometimes when pursuing his hobby of lying motionless for hours, he recalls vague memories of sunken obelisks, blood-red flames and a golden man on a throne of spiderís silk. Itís probably nothing.
    I feel like this golden being is some kind of ancient entity, Cthulhu style, and the mysterious figure reveres it. What's more, this zombie has been rising from death for a period of time since he first initially died, with no memory of what happened previously. I'm thinking that he rises every cycle in response to a sort of calling, because he is actually meant to be the host for this golden monster.

    That's really all I've got so far. Am I thinking too far ahead? Does this even sound like a fun idea?

    I guess I'm mostly struggling with how to make the first session enjoyable. Most of what I've written is background info, that won't come out until later in the series.

    Advice and ideas are greatly appreciated, and it just really helps to talk to other folks about my ideas.

  2. #2
    OPA Belta SignalGK's Avatar
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    Re: Advice For My First Game

    Sounds interesting - setting up for later adventures can be fun. How about including some reveals about each of your players background (possibly one of the players who has a younger brother in one of the gangs?), include their specific big bads, or introduce a possible sponsor (you decide whether it is a genuine offer or something more sinister) - throw in a school bus of little children to rescue, make a few useful contacts in the local fire service, reporters and police and something to pull them together against the big bad and you've got everything you need for an introductory adventure.

    Fairly recently I started a new campaign also with only a couple of characters - the various sessions and the between game PBM sessions (called bluebooking) are detailed on a website but our first session was way too ambitious and had too many hooks and background for the players to properly absorb - many of these elements are still being played out 12 sessions later - it made for a messy first session. In fairness I was trying to introduce the players to a unique parallel earth as well as each other for the first time. the second session was a relatively straight forward ghost story and the third was essentially team building both of which was more enjoyable.

    What I do advise is keeping notes of any characters they meet and any interesting ideas for future adventures the players might suggest or throw at you. Your players will give you all sorts of suggestions as to what they would like out of the game and by listening to their ideas and suggestions you will expand your universe in ways that will make your players enjoy coming back time after time. Don't be afraid to disagree with them though if they want to take the game in a different and uncomfortable direction (such as play out a suicide squad campaign if you wanted an avengers-style game etc.) You are entitled to also enjoy the sessions as a joint creation - players and ref together.

    For example my players recently started to design their own base (nicknamed the BASEment) and suggesting various support characters they wanted to interact with such as the meta-human pilot who's the brother of one of the players who's also starting to get romantically involved with the cyborg hacker who joined the support team. Another character has added in a possessed ex-SAS butler and the most recent addition is a meta-human artist.

    As a result, this added a number of new directions to the campaign, filled some of the gaps in the team's skills and abilities (such as how as a team they got places) and added character development and a number of soap opera elements as agreed with the players first.

    If your interested you can read the adventures of The Balance (as my players call themselves) at https://mm3e.wordpress.com/guide-to-episodes/

    Good luck

  3. #3
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    Re: Advice For My First Game

    Quote Originally Posted by SignalGK View Post
    Sounds interesting - setting up for later adventures can be fun. How about including some reveals about each of your players background (possibly one of the players who has a younger brother in one of the gangs?), include their specific big bads, or introduce a possible sponsor (you decide whether it is a genuine offer or something more sinister) - throw in a school bus of little children to rescue, make a few useful contacts in the local fire service, reporters and police and something to pull them together against the big bad and you've got everything you need for an introductory adventure.

    Fairly recently I started a new campaign also with only a couple of characters - the various sessions and the between game PBM sessions (called bluebooking) are detailed on a website but our first session was way too ambitious and had too many hooks and background for the players to properly absorb - many of these elements are still being played out 12 sessions later - it made for a messy first session. In fairness I was trying to introduce the players to a unique parallel earth as well as each other for the first time. the second session was a relatively straight forward ghost story and the third was essentially team building both of which was more enjoyable.
    So you're saying that I should just keep the first session simple, and focus on giving the players a chance to be heroic and do cool stuff? Right now I fee like the flow is essentially going to be "Knock Out Thugs -> Save Civilians -> Fight to the HQ -> Stop the Ritual."

  4. #4
    OPA Belta SignalGK's Avatar
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    Re: Advice For My First Game

    Quote Originally Posted by CoronaBlue View Post
    So you're saying that I should just keep the first session simple, and focus on giving the players a chance to be heroic and do cool stuff? Right now I fee like the flow is essentially going to be "Knock Out Thugs -> Save Civilians -> Fight to the HQ -> Stop the Ritual."
    I'm saying make it fun and have lots of opportunties for your players characters to shine - your gang members may or may not prove to be that big a challenge but I do believe the best games are those where the Ref and players work together to build an enjoyable experience for everyone rather than seeing it as a contest or worse a duel.

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