The Sunday afternoon gaming group continued play of their Torg Eternity RPG campaign, set in the Cyberpapacy, on Sunday (the 8th). You can read the blog entry on the previous session by following the link. This post is somewhat long, so I've put it behind a cut for those who don't want to read about my roleplaying game campaigns.
Jean André Bernard (SteveR) – Unstoppable Cop/Gendarme
Celeste Dubois (Tammy) – Cyberwitch
Jacques Dumont (GM/NPC) – Realm Runner
April 8th, 2017
While out and about in Paris, Celeste Dubois attempts her scrambler spell but fails badly [she backfires the spell], thus summoning up a minor demon. She watches in horror as the creature kills three of the Parisian gendarmes. She sees a group of Church Police streetbeaters running towards her and the demon, then notices a mysterious figure in a nearby alley who beckons her towards him with a cyber-clawed hand. She hesitates to go towards him, but the soon-to-arrive Church Police motivates her, and she quickly moves towards him and enters the shadows of the alley. They move off a bit down the alley, and the hooded figure tells her his name, Henri Chabot, and he’s “like you”, and then gestures and a small ball of light appears in his hand. He tells her that he’s come from Magna Verita with other members of a resistance movement, and that they are there to aid the Core Earthers fight the evil of the Cyberpope. He tells her that the demon is her responsibility, as it was her spell’s “failure” that brought forth the demon. He tells her there is a way around the backlash, but that it involves cyberware. Henri says that he’s aware of her actions (and those of two of her friends, though she says they’re not friends, exactly) in Orange and that she knows of a cyber shoppe in Avignon (through a mutual friend of theirs). She can get the aid and work done that she needs there. Henri says that the trip to Avignon will be dangerous, so she should consider her choices wisely. Feeling guilty, she goes back to the entrance to the alley, but there is no sign of the demon. The Church Police have fanned out in their search for the creature, but she also notices that several medtechs are examining the bodies of the gendarmes, and they are also treating several other wounded. Startled as he whispers in her ear, Henri comments that it’s fortunate that one of the four gendarmes survived the attack...
Elsewhere in Paris, civilian dressed Jean André Bernard reports in to the gendarmerie of Paris, only to find that the building present there is now called the Gendarmerie Centrale, and that it is a sleek, modern building with seeming state-of-the-art security systems outside and all manner of giant video screens and the like. On entering the building, Jean sees that the changes are more than cosmetic, and that the majority of the gendarmes present seem to be sporting uniforms or partial uniforms of the CP streetbeaters. Many of the people present also seem to be cyber enhanced and he recognizes a couple of gendarmes that he knew from their tours in Rouen. They don’t acknowledge his presence when they see him. Jean goes up to the duty sergeant’s desk, and tells the man who he is and that he’s reporting in. The sergeant checks his name, and the flag is triggered about the “incident” in Orange and his role in it with two other unenlightened ones. He hears the “click” sound of three weapons, and turns to find three of the Church Police streetbeaters behind him. In a bold move, Jean attempts to leap over the sergeant’s desk, but slams into the forcefield that’s been activated there [taking 3 Shock damage], and he falls back to land at the feet of the streetbeaters, looking down the barrels of their GodMeeters. Accused of heresy by the Church, he attempts to explain the situation, telling them of the old man he saw shot to death by the streetbeaters in Orange. The desk sergeant crouches over him, and says that “did not happen the way you remember it”, and the memory of it seems to be somewhat less tangible in Jean’s mind. After he cries out about liberty and freedom, he is slugged with the butt of one of the GodMeeters, and loses consciousness.
After having gotten himself, his wife, Cecile, and his son, Dolland, settled into a decent condominium on the Rive Gauche, Jacques Dumont is taking some time to himself, and looking around the city. He wonders if he’ll ever be able to return to his normal life, but thinks that the arrival of the Cyberpapacy will likely never allow for “normal” again. As he walks, Jacques is sure that he’s being followed, and attempts to give the pursuer the slip, and thinks he does. As he emerges from a small alley, however, his pursuer, a young man with a bushy beard and a cyber left eye, is waiting for him, a smile on his face. He introduces himself as Regis Lalonde, and says that Jacques is just what they are looking for. They talk for a while, and Regis explains that he’s part of a group, a “resistance group, if you will”, that is looking for people to undertake small ventures out into the “wilderness” of CyberFrance, taking foodstuffs, supplies, and other materials out to the small communities, also looking for like-minded individuals. Jacques asks why him, as he’s just a history professor, but Regis says he’s more than that, he’s someone who can “go anywhere, be anywhere”. He tells Jacques that the first job they have for him is to head back to Avignon, “the place where this all seems to have started,” and bring in some food supplies. For some reason that he’s not sure of, Jacques agrees to do so. Regis tells him to meet him and some others at a warehouse on the Seine at a certain time (five days hence, in early evening) and gives him a written piece of paper with an address on it. Jacques ponders how he’s going to explain this to Cecile...
Back at the Gendarmerie Centrale, Jean regains consciousness to find himself in a holding cell. He has a sharp pain in his forehead, and reaching up realizes there’s a metallic chip of some sort (2mm x 6mm] embedded in his forehead. He immediately reacts by slamming his head into the nearest wall; the chip is not damaged, but he goes [temporarily] blind after a sharp burst of pain at the point of contact. He attempts to pull out the chip or whatever it is, but receives a jolt of pain [and suffers 1 Wound and 2 Shock]; it’s too much for his system, and he loses consciousness again. He comes to again, to the feel of a feminine hand on his jaw. Opening his eyes, he sees a dark-haired, blue eyed attractive woman with pouty lips; she lets go his jaw when she realizes he’s awake. She doesn’t tell him her name, but says she’s there to help him and that she’s removed the chip that had been implanted in him. He reaches up, and doesn’t feel the chip at all or sense any wound where it might have been [was that all hallucination or not?]. She says they’ve got to hurry, and she seems to cast a spell that scrambles electronics and surveillance for a short period of time. She leads him through a dizzying set of corridors and three rooms before they reach a door that is iris-like in function. As she taps in the keycode, she tells him that he had best leave Paris. As the door irises open, he looks out at the cityscape. On several of the large jumbotron screens and advertising billboards, his face is brightly lit up, with the caption below: “WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE, Reward: 10,000 Euros”.
April 13th, 2017
The various Storm Knights head for the meeting at the warehouse on Rue Charmit near the docks. Arriving on the scene, each Storm Knight can tell that the warehouse is somewhat dingy. They are met by a young woman with a mohawk cut, lots of metal studs, and cyberwar [think a Cyber Punk], and admitted to the warehouse. Inside, the player character encounter four individuals, two men and two women. One of the men introduces himself as Marcel Koropoulos, the leader of this “cell,” and the other being Regis Lalonde. Jacques and Regis acknowledge one another, the latter having a slight knowing smile on his face. One of the women tells them she is Marie, but the other woman doesn’t introduce herself and seems somewhat standoff-ish.
Marcel tells the characters what has happened in the ten days since the Maelstrom bridge dropped in Avignon, and how the populace seems to have accepted the arrival of the Cyberpope as their salvation, but that they have all (giving Jean a look) seen examples of the “forcefulness” of the approach the Church Police are taking at times. When Jacques asks why he’s there, Marcel says that he has some skills that will be of use to them. “They” are the start of a small resistance group, and Jacques will be useful in helping them transport foodstuffs, goods, and perhaps weapons to places where they’re needed or required. Marcel adds that his first job would be to take some materials to Orange and Avignon, the place where it all started for him. Jacques agrees to do so, and Celeste tells Marcel that she’ll go with him, at least to Avignon; she has some things to take care of pertaining to her magic in Avignon. Marie sneers at her, and snidely says she’s a heretic, since she uses magic, but Celeste refutes this vigorously. A conflict appears about to start between the two women, but Marcel smoothly intervenes and calms the situation down, though it’s obvious that Marie is still not happy about this. Marie comments that they have other problems to deal with, and looks at Jean. Celeste asks Jean why he’s wanted in Paris, and Jean explains to her about the events at the Gendarmerie, his being chipped, and the escape courtesy of the mystery woman. Everyone chides him for his foolish decisions, and Marcel can’t help but question him about his loyalty to CyberFrance. Before they can debate the matter further, the cyber punk lookout[, Marielle,] informs them that a group of Churchies are heading their way - looks like a Cyberpriest, a Cyberknight, and a bunch of Church Police. Attention turns back to Jean, as the others accuse him of bringing the Church forces down on them. Before Marcel can say anything else, and the groups starts to scatter, the delivery set of doors at the warehouse’s loading bay explode inward, and the Church forces arrive.
Jacques immediately reacts by firing his pistol in the direction of a shadowy figure he sees through the flames and fire, but his bullets have no effect on whoever is standing there, as he hears the pinging sounds of it ringing off the armour. Jean attempts to fire at the same target as Jean, but his attack has pretty much the same effect. Celeste keeps an eye on the door where the female lookout came from, and watches as the door dissolves. She sees the figure of a cyberpriest in the doorway and shoots at her. Her shot with the GodMeeter is ineffective, and the cyberpriest intimates the entire group [causing the Storm Knights to be Stymied]. The cyberpriest throws a hellfire miracle at Celeste and she is hurt [she takes 2 Shock] and her clothes burst into flames. She stops, drops, and rolls and manages to put the flames out. With the assistance of the badly wounded Marcel, Jean, Jacques, Regis and Marie take out the Church streetbeaters coming in through the loading area, and Jacques shouts the way out is clear. Jacques takes a nasty hit from a GodMeeter but doesn’t seem to be hurt badly [he Soaks the injury, and recovers all but 1 Wound]. The cyberpriest attempts to use the hellfire spell on Celeste again, and she is hit for a terrible injury, though her clothes don’t catch fire. [She took 4 Wounds and 8 Shock. Note: This sequence is where I botched it up. I allowed her to use two Supporter cards and an Adrenaline card to raise her Toughness, thus reducing the damage significantly from the hellfire miracle, but you can’t use cards and the like to increase Toughness at all. You can only Soak the damage, and then take your chances with a Defeat roll to avoid death, in actual fact. Oops!] Celeste is shocked that she’s still alive, but dashes out of the warehouse with the rest of the people there. There’s no opposition to their escape. Marcel, being supported by Regis, tells Jacques that he’ll be in contact in the next day or two about the planned trip to Orange and Avignon, and then the resistance members (including Marie, who gives Jean a hate-filled look) vanish into the Paris night, while the Storm Knights make their way away from the docks. As they do so, Celeste can’t help but wonder why the Church party allowed them to escape so easily...
Sunday's game session of Torg Eternity was an interesting one for a couple of reasons. First off, I'd had no ideas of what scenario to run the group through and figured that I'd wait to see what kind of plot ideas and stuff the players would give me. Second of all, I'd been distracted by some Real Life(tm) stuff going on and wasn't really all that focused on Sunday, to be honest, on the game. With all that said, things worked out much better than I expected them to, and using the Prologue material in Paris as a basis worked well. There's the doubt about SteveR's character, Jean, right now because of the chip business; his decision at the gendarmerie, given the events of the first scenario in Orange, gave me an opening for a sub-plot, though whether he works with it or not is another matter. I also decided to use the NPC's role as a realm runner to take the characters back to Orange and Avignon for the rest of this adventure, and then we'll see how things go from there.
Hopefully, I'll have some time today or tomorrow to jot down some stuff for the next Act or so, but we'll see. My time is at a premium this week, it seems. In any event, I'm looking forward to the next session of the scenario.