Play Report: Pest Control

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Play Report: Pest Control
« on: December 05, 2012, 03:23:35 AM »
Our main game right now is Weird Wars, but I've been itching to run some new games for my friends. Monster of the Week hits just the right spot between genres and game styles.

Tonight I ran the adventure Pest Control, a mystery involving a "haunted" factory. The team was Agent Morneau (professional), Shotgun Suzie (spooky), Godfrey Gutenburg (slayer with giant machete), and Imhotep the ever-lovin' MUMMY!

Imhotep and Godfrey were both romantically interested in Suzie, whom Imhotep declared to be his Anck Su Namun. Morneau was Godfrey's mentor, and was the agent who recruited the rest of the team. I love how the Histories provide so much story. Especially with four players, there is a very rich batch of connections to draw on. The guys were laughing and having a great time with the schticks that came out of character creation.

Only one of these guys had experience with any of the AW system games, but the character pamphlets worked as intended. There were some issues with the way the moves spread out over the pages and columns, but everybody figured it out.
I warned them before the game that they would need to research to be successful. Everyone was generous with Highlights. I really wanted people to get experience and earn advances, so I just piled on. That worked well. It's surprising and fun to get a cool advance in the middle of a game session.

The hook is a phone call from Godfrey's mother. She tells him his aunt says the factory she works in is haunted. There have been some accidents.

So the agent, the chosen, the spooky, and the ever-lovin' MUMMY get in the van and start asking questions. The game was hilarious. My buddy Jeff was having a great time playing the mummy and proclaiming his godhood, while still basically cooperating with the group. Basically there was an extra monster in the story who was nominally on their side. They tried to keep the mummy in the van, but he kept wandering out and following them to make demands, etc. The professional was sort of a crumpled investigator, not a suave agent. It's impossible to convey the hilarity that ensued. There was investigation, trial and error, mass panic. Multiple limbs were lost.

There was one round of PVP. Imhotep and Godfrey fought briefly over an insult to Suzie, but the Chosen had just purchased Invulnerability. Imhotep attacked with his super strength, rolling an 8. He wasn't using a weapon, so all his damage was absorbed by Godfrey's invulnerability. On the other hand, by virtue of the system, Godfrey got to strike back with his superior weapon. Imhotep had no armor. Ouch. Each character got to narrate something cool. It didn't work out for the mummy so he figured out a different way to cause mayhem. All good.

In the end, the agent finally succeeded at some Investigation with the right supporting evidence to figure out the creature's weakness, just as the rest of the party was to the point where they could see it (it was invisible mostly). Imhotep tried to strike a bargain with the creature but ultimately it was too egotistical to serve him. It took a tag team of attacks all at once, but they brought the critter down.

I had some problems coming up with mixed results, particularly spell glitches. It would be helpful to have the gear tags on the Keeper Reference somehow. I should have used some index cards to remember a couple of ongoing items, but overall it flowed really well and we had a really fun night of joking around and playing Monster of the Week. I could certainly imagine more serious games, and look forward to that. But this bunch is really funny, so I was happy to facilitate a game that let that happen more than our tense, tactical games do. Tonight, the game really was a conversation.

I'd be happy to share the scenario if anyone is interested.


Re: Play Report: Pest Control
« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2012, 03:28:51 AM »
Sounds like a great game!

Comedy is a legitimate mode for the game, as far as I am concerned (despite the fact the text implies a darker, more serious tone - that's a default rather than the one true way).

Re: Play Report: Pest Control
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2012, 08:26:03 AM »
Definitely sounds like you had a good time. And yeah, my most recent one-shot was a bit more gonzo and humourous too. One of the characters was a Constructed that was basically a man-sized, humanoid musical instrument, powered by music. XD