A Role-Playing Game of Bloody Revenge on Devil's Night
Burning Down the House
In this episode, we play through a game of Hell 4 Leather, a Tarot-based game of vengeful murderous undead bikers. There are no spoilers here, so listen away as you please.
As always, be aware that the podcast is not really family-friendly, if that sort of thing bothers you. This particular game (specifically, episodes 3 and 4) briefly includes actual on-screen sex, for which blame the source material.
This episode is probably the fumbliest, as we try to work out the mechanics at the same time as trying to improvise a game based on a genre that only two of three players have seen. There are some nice touches though, although mostly these are set-dressing rather than plot sadly.
We'll discuss this later, but in hindsight we dropped the ball on this scene by letting the conversation drop and looking around for the Rider to show up and kill someone. What we should have done was used this to establish the characters firmly, devise some links between them and work out what exactly they were doing both in the gang and in the conspiracy. No criticism intended, but it didn't help that Dan is a bit uncomfortable talking in character and was playing a character who would naturally suggest dropping the conversation for now. I feel like the game could maybe do with having some structure to help encourage reticent players to go ahead and flesh out some actual characters?
Also in hindsight, allowing the "you are changed by your brush with death" to be read as "you are physically changed by narrowly surviving an assassination attempt" was maybe a mistake, because that became the default and only reading for the several times people survived. Once would be fine, but letting it become a habit undermines one of the plot-driving systems of the game. If we'd stuck to reading it as actual character change, then we'd have been forced to develop characters that could be changed, and this would have been a good precedent.
While we're at it, I really like the idea of a Molotov cocktail made from the soul of the original Molotov, and would like to incorporate that in a game.
Copyright and suchlike
Hell 4 Leather is copyright and/or trademark Price of Darkness Games. The podcast theme music is Vltava from Smetana's Má Vlast as taken from Wikimedia Commons under the CC0 licence. The episode intro is Hell Bent for Leather by Judas Priest. The outro is Bat out of Hell by Meat Loaf.