Tuesday, March 6th, 2007
The first session of the game began with an introduction to the Primevalverse, learning the basic mechanics of the game (and how they differ from those in the DW: AiTaS rpg), and taking part in some sample combats to get a hang for the system.
The game started simply enough: It's a labour day holiday, a chilly and wet day, and the player characters begin the adventure in Henderson Park. Gwendolyn ("Gwen") Thorpe (Tammy), a tour guide for Kensington Tours, is walking along the dirt paths, now somewhat muddy, when she sees a man flick ash from his cigarette into the bush. When she chastises him, he gives her the finger, and she moves along.
Timothy ("Tim") Carson (spross), a geophysics graduate student at University College London (UCL), is hiking through the parkland, and passes Gwendolyn Thorpe, and on seeing her, thinks she's quite attractive. He keeps hiking, and passing several couples being somewhat romantic, and enters a deeper part of the woodland. It's quieter and more primordial.
James ("Jimmy") Black (Douglas), an ex-con working at a Soho butcher's, is jogging along in the park, and sees several other joggers go by. He heads deeper into the forested area and sees more joggers and several couples and some parents with children. He hears the word "bone" in a conversation as he passes by, but ignores it. He decides to go off the trail, and heads deeper into the wood. He could swear that he hears someone or something, but decides to keep going.
Gwen stops and orients herself with the compass, and then heads off the trail and deeper into the woods. As she moves on, she sees something bright and reflective for just a moment nearby. She stops and goes to investigate, and finds what appears to be a bleached bone among some of the ferns in the area. She clears away some more of the ferns (realising subconsciously that the ferns' presence here is somewhat odd), and finds the rest of what appears to be a humanoid. She calls the police on her mobile, and informs them of what she's found, despite some static on the mobile that keeps going in and out during the call.
Tim hears her talking on the phone through the woods, along with the static, the characters being completely off the beaten path, and moves and approaches her. She tells the police officer on the phone about the presence of a newcomer (Timothy), and then the mobile goes dead for some reason.
Jimmy shows up on the scene, attracted by the noise, and sees the shimmering hole of some sort (from now on Anomalies shall be referred to as what they are) in the distance behind the figures of Gwen and Tim, but his attention is foremost on the bones they've found. He talks to them about the bones, and they hear what sounds like swishing sounds nearby. Jimmy brings the Anomaly to the attention of the other two, and the group believes that the light source is some other people in the woodland setting.
Gwen ties a flourescent ribbon around a tree near the site of the bones, and then she heads towards the Anomaly. Tim goes with her, and Jimmy follows along as he doesn't want to be left alone with the bones for some odd reason. Gwen takes out her compass, and the needle spins wildly before the compass flies out of her hand and spins off towards the light source. Several other metal objects in her pockets also try to escape, as do some of the belongings of both Jimmy and Tim.
Gwen continues walking towards the shimmering light, and sees what appears to be the shadow of some sort of animal - scaly, with a long neck, and what might be feathers. Jimmy and Tim hear a noise in the trees above where they've stopped; when they look up, they see a creature with claws and recurved teeth, hissing at them furiously. The two are paralysed with fear for several moments.
Gwen notices that there are lots of ferns in the area. When she asks what the other two player characters think, they are interrupted by a roar from behind them. Gwen dives for cover behind some of the ferns. Tim moves towards the Anomaly, thinking that he can get behind it, while Jimmy manages to break off a low hanging branch on the nearest tree to use as a weapon. He quickly strips the leaves off it.
Tim is attacked by one of the creatures, and is barely able to avoid harm. The creature is about 3 metres long, a meter high, has large eyes, four digits, a long neck and elongated head, and a rigid tail. It has sharp, recurved teeth, and short claws. The creature flees at some speed into the vegetation, and Tim realises he's very close to the Anomaly and looks at it for the first time clearly. Jimmy comes up to them and also sees the Anomaly clearly for the first time, and tries to poke a stick through, then walks around the Anomaly. He tosses a stick through; Gwen, who has emerged from cover, and Tim see that the stick did not come out near them.
In a fit of bravado, Jimmy walks through the shimmering, glass-filled circle of light, and Gwen decides to follow him. The two of them find themselves in a cave somewhere, the air being breathable - and are confronted with three of the creatures!
As can be seen, the first session of the Sunday afternoon Primeval RPG was similar to, but somewhat different from, the first session with the Friday gaming group. Tammy's character appears to be the most interesting of the crew, and I was somewhat disappointed that spross didn't take a more Life Sciences oriented character. Doug's character is similar to the one that he played in the Airship Pirates rpg sessions, but I think there's more room for variance with the character in the Primeval RPG system. Time will tell. :) There was some interesting stuff in this first session with the Sunday afternoon players, and I suspect that this first "jaunt" through an Anomaly will not be these gamers' last.