The players arrived in a timely fashion, and Kathy (acting as spokesperson) for the four player who had played the game before told me that they had all found their characters, and Kathy had been able to retrieve the session notes from back in 2009 that she had and had sent them to me, along with the location in my blog where I could find said notes. Rather than start from scratch, both Angela and David (who had never played a|state before) agreed to continue the campaign from that point, introducing their new characters to the game from where it had left off. I was agreeable to this, though I did express concern over the fact that I had lost all my game notes and campaign materials for the game. This didn't seem to concern the others, though, so we started in on the process.
Character generation in the a|state RPG is a somewhat involved affair that involves putting a solid character background into focus before getting to the game mechanics. After I explained some of the details about the game world environment, The City, and talked about the basic mechanics for task resolution, the gamers got down to their characters. Kathy, Nick, Tom, and Joanne went through the process with David and Angela, but merely did a bit of tweaking of their characters and a few modifications.
In any event, here's what you need to know about character creation last night, and the a|state characters the players created. Kathy is playing Cyndra Jesspian, a former house servant of one of the Macrocorporates who may or may not know something she shouldn't, and fled/was booted into The City's more rough and tumble life. Nick is playing Edward Fleckright, a Ghostfighter of some repute who may have been the inspiration for one of Sideband Media's tv shows (or vice versa). Tom has taken on the role of Jason Demonoris, an antique and relics hunter (who has worked with SteveB's Tommy Thackery before), but is something of a sly devil as well. Joanne is playing Hedriana Locke, a Runner, a message carrier, in The City who has finally made a name for herself - and some enemies. Angela hemmed and hawed about matters, but finally decided on Edricka Hatchett, a middle class stringer who has a bit of a cutthroat nature at times. David was pretty easy in this regard, and took Marcus Hangworth, a lostfinder from a drudge family in Folly Hills with a strong sense of right and wrong. In addition, Ellie (SteveB and Kathy's daughter) is playing a precocious street urchin called Genny, who has been taken in by Cyndra for reasons that have yet to be dealt with. Little Genny causes more problems than she's worth at times, but she's...feisty.
After we finished, the players told me that they had had a good time doing up the characters. David and Angela were both thrilled and intrigued by the game setting and what was to come, no doubt fuelled by some of the "Tales of a|state" that Kathy, Nick, Tom, and Joanne regaled them with during the night, but did find character generation to be intense, but still enjoyable.
I ran a couple of sample combats to give everyone, especially David and Angela, a feel for the combat system and how deadly it is, and they concurred with me and the other, experienced players on this point. By the time the group departed around 1:10 am, the gamers and I had agreed that we would be playing a|state for the next two weeks, until July, when Nick will be running a game so I get to be a player for an entire month. Yay! :)
And on that note, time for me to take another antibiotic. Yuckk!