The DnD game looked to be short a couple of players on Friday, so we decided to try something else. I ran a session of the “Grade School” sorcerers set up, as seen in the Grimm Therapy section of RandomWiki. (The first time I swapped in Sorcerer for the DnD game we did Clicking Sands — this might have been the perfect time to get back to the story, except that it wasn’t the same group of players that could make it this time. Someday… someday…)
When I get a second, I’ll add the character and demon stats to the Grimm Therapy page in a second column but for now I’m just going to talk about them in (mostly) plain english and go over the events of actual play.
I fiddled with the one-sheet and color intro to the setting that I’d used in the last GT game a few weeks back, as well as updating the character sheet to make it more crayon-friendly. Also, with a little more time to prep, I was able to add some notes from the previous game (which I’d decided to set in the same general locale) and more thoughts on the setting from the Forge. The more I play around with it, the more I think this’d be a really fun pre-gen Con game (for all that Sorcerer makes a pretty poor con game).
Justin and I sat down to do character generation before everyone else got there. We distributed numbers easily enough and worked out the descriptors fairly painlessly. Justin has witnessed the game sessions for Bibliophage a couple of times and had sort of decided Sorcerer wasn’t for him, but he really got into the character generation process quickly. He created Jackie, a ‘team captain’ kind of character (the kid who always gets to pick teams) crossed with a hellraiser who does crazy stuff to keep from getting bored when things get slow (team captain + hellraiser = ringleader?). The character is a Dragonrider in the Make Believe. His demon is “Fred”, a dragon he rides (obviously) in the Make Believe and who’s only seen in the Real World “when I call him out” (inconspicuous). Fred can fly, breathes out blasts of water, has a shiny body and literal blades for teeth and claws. His need is to hunt Goblins (“and other little living things”) with Jackie and his desire is Competition. He’s one powerful mama-jama and really has a Binding advantage over the character.
We filled out the character sheet in crayon; “kid stuff” that really helped almost-14 Justin get a clear picture of the age of the character.
One of the things that really surprised and impressed me about this process was how much Justin was ready to improvise answers to questions that came up in chargen — I’ve GMed him in many games and this was one where he really got into the character conceptualization (if not later execution). For example, when I asked him how he met Fred and got him to let him ride him, Justin immediately launched into a detailed 10-minute story of the event, as though he’d worked it all out for hours beforehand — ditto when I asked about what the dragon could do. An hour before this, he’d thought he wouldn’t like the game. I think that the level of player control over defining the characters as they liked (I took his dragon desciption and just converted it into demon abilities on my own) really set him loose. This had some “I can do anything I want” downsides during play, but it really paid off at this point.