Boiler died again on Saturday morning. Perfect timing as the Lettings place is closed on Saturdays. Obviously I'm more than a little irked and after 4-5 tries of "start the boiler" I decided to not let it rule my every waking moment and go to Battlemasters.
Not a great start. The boiler had delayed me sufficiently that I was the first person to not get a bag of freebies for going through the door. Furthermore I discovered Battlemasters is the kind of con where there are two factions:- the Eurolog players and the Living campaign players.
Game 1 - Sokal: This is the Eurolog answer to a living campaign and they proudly state it is older than any other such campaign. Unlike most living campaigns you are given a pre-genned character who you advance throughout the scenarios. There are other players who have the same character so I presume if two Bill the Clerics turn up there are problems.
However the game itself was ok though there was a deluge of information I didn't rightly understand. As you play pregens I presume the missions are much more tailored to the individual characters, especially seeing as one of the PCs was Slick the Kobold King.
As I said the game was ok except for the fact we were relatively in the shadow of the kobold king, and I rightly didn't understand everything.
Game 2 - Cthulu: Best game of the weekend, we were playing factory workers in 1946 who discovered that the neighbouring workship was used as a site for numerous acid bath murders and that these grizzly killings had awoken something beneath the workshop.
This was a great game, though the DM didn't have any pregen characters, instead passing us Delta Green characters and telling us to tweak them for the 1940s. For instance it is not likely that factory workers are likely to have Computer Use as a skill. I tweaked mine, putting points into other skills like Spot Hidden and but it was obvious others hadn't done quite the same.
This led to the creation of another player's character, swiftly named "Clever" Trevor. Despite being only a factory worker Trev had a beyond professional skill in Psychology, knew martial arts and was an adept chemist. Clearly wasted in the manual labour profession Trevor was also prone to bouts of insanity that include smoking cigarettes dipped in sulphuric acid and trying to kill small children.
The other characters were much more responsibly put together and it was a relatively cinematic session.
Game 3 - Sarbreenar 1: Sarbreenar is the relatively larger cousin to Sokal, a living city set in Sarbreenar. I have a 2nd level character I've been playing for the past 3 or so years (advancement is extra slow in Scotland as there are so few cons Sarbreenar supports). Sarbreenar is probably Living Greyhawk's chief competitor, though overall Onnwal gets more bums on seats across the country owing to the fact you don't need to go to cons to play.
I played a 2nd level character in a 6th level party. To be honest after playing for 8 hours anyway I slept through most of this, not taking part in the first big fight as it was an arena fight and I was too weak. For the 2nd fight a Cause Fear spell took care of my character in the initial rounds. Somehow I came out of it as a level 3 charactr with a +1 longsword and doubled my gold. Oh well.
Game 4 - Sarbreenar 2: After the previous night's pathetic performance I decided I'd go play Cthulu as that had proven a lot more fun than the other two games. I was now on the Sokal radar though and kept being asked if I wouldn't mind playing it again (ah... bless!) It turned out however that it was only me and a girl I'd played Cthulu with in the other slot who were down for our table so I swiftly changed to Sarbreenar rather than not play anything at all.
This was a party of 3rd to 5th level PCs. After last night's performance I was 3rd so I was actually roughly the same power level as the rest of the party. However about 5 mins into the scenario I was embarassed to discover I'd played the scenario already. So we switched it.
The game was a lot better. We had to go into a city secretly held by the Zhentarim (a bunch of Scarlet Brotherhood clones who seem to capture cities miles from their country's border for no real economic gain that I can tell, but enough of that) and rescue a goblin. It was a lot of fun as because I play a human I disguised myself as a Zhent and put on a Darth Vaderesque accent and the fools bought it.
Overall a good con, and now I'm here typing about it. Yay!