Tuesday, 11 November 2014

A Stony Sleep, part 5

This Brain Is Above Your Security Clearance

This is a playthrough of A Stony Sleep from The Emperor Protects, so be careful not to let on to your GM that you listened to it. It does reveal one crucial plot event, and foreknowledge will inevitably affect the way you play this scenario. As always, be aware that the podcast is not really family-friendly, if that sort of thing bothers you.

Some episodes feature bonus material after the closing music, of varying interest. This is usually either teasers, or conversations that were sort of interesting, but not a bit tangential to the main episode.

Episode 5

The Episode

This being a transitional episode between phases of the investigation, there's a lot of stuff going on here. There could potentially have been a much longer cultist-fighting phase, but Arthur made a tactical decision to cut this short due to our gaming schedules (and to avoid repetition).

There's a sort of instinct to rebel when some objective is unattainable, such as rescuing the inquisitor, which I definitely suffer from. This is not in fact one of the official objectives, which you might recall made us suspicious in the first episode, although I offered a (plausible?) counterpoint. But you want to rescue people when you're heroic, even in the brutal Imperium. In practice, I thought this was one of the better examples of this sort of thing. We got a chance to interact with Vincent and try whatever we wanted. His mental state, betrayal and position of authority gave a convincing reason why he wasn't rescuable, while a long absence plus the nature of his captors convincingly accounted for those things. This wasn't one of those "NPC is shot at long range by an unseen enemy, having promised to divulge vital information first thing in the morning because it's too late right now" affairs.

The submarine sequence was a little bit disrupted by us players leaping to action while Arthur was trying to narrate. In practice, the outage is supposed to take a second or so, but we weren't quite clear on that. No big deal, it's just something that happens sometimes.

The encounter with the Alpha Legion was tense, but maybe a little anticlimactic? The opener was good, as Nikolai does his level best to get himself killed again (in retrospect, "slight caution" a poor choice when I should have been auspexing like anything). Having all four obliterated by a single psychic power was both satisfyingly awesome on our behalf, and slightly disappointing - I can't really decide which one won out for me. However, it's hard to dissociate my judgement from the points I've already made about this stuff.

DVD extra bonus material

We talk briefly about Demon: the Fallen, since this recording was actually made before the Demon game I posted a while ago. Hooray for time travel. I already discussed some of the many, many problems with this game. In the light of that, the discussion here of chapters being presented inconsistently takes on a different light. It seem less like an unfortunate editorial decision, and more like yet more evidence that the product wasn’t actually finished, let alone edited for consistency.

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