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Running the "Dark Simmetry Campaign"

posted Feb 27, 2018 13:49:04 by john.lonewolf
Hi everyone, this thread here is addressed to both the game developers behind the DS Campaign book, to whom I will be asking clarifications on how they intended some plot elements to run, and to other players in order to collect their impressions when thay have played said campaign.
I will be GMing the Dark Simmetry Campaign shortly and I am working very hard to make it a memorable experience for my players.
So, here we go with part 1.

+++ VERY HEAVY SPOILER AHEAD +++

Here are the first elements I would like to discuss with you all, mainly to check if I understood it the right way and/or if there are better way to handle some situations in the story.
1. CAMPAIGN SINOPSYS: I read all the book from cover to cover and I understood the thing about two time periods to be played with, quite obviously, a different set of characters. As I got it, the first one is set in -101 YC (2481 CE I think, I don't have the timeline at hand) made of "Straffar Gatan 39" and "The Fall of Von Holle"; THEN the campaign proper, starting with "Appetite for desctruction", which is set in 53 YC. The two phases are 154 years apart, so the previous characters most certainly died of old age (or worst!).

NOTE 1: pregenerated characters. As many before have noticed, there is only one set of pregens so that one has to decide when to use them, that is either during SG39+Von Holle in -101 YC OR in the campaign proper in 53 YC. That is fine for me, as I wanted the players to roll their own ones for the longer part of the game, so I decided we will be using pregens for the spooky apartment building on Punishment Way. This also was "supported" by a couple of sentences at the very beginning of "Von Holle" when it is said that "the adventure is ideal for the pregens provided in the book". The thing is, once I finished reading DS campaign I discovered, with much surprise, that the intended finale was to have the characters enter a state of stasis that lasted the 1200 years necessary to cover the gap between DS Campaign and DL Campaign. I then rushed to open the Dark Legion Campaign book and there they were, the very same pregens of the Dark Legion Campaign (Vance Ryder, Nicholas Cullen, etc) all upgraded to reflect the fact that, if the players didn't go through DL Campaign, their characters did anyways, or in any case they needed to be much stronger than their former incarnations. Obviously this is no issue at all, since I already decided to have the players roll up their PCs, but I found it very confusing and I just wanted to know from the developers what is their idea on when the pregens should be used.

NOTE 2: the idea of having LPD cops as PCs is very fun, and also I must admit that "Appetite for Destruction" is very entertaining and dynamic. I just got a little bit confused because of the fact that both segments of the DS book (SG39+VonHolle AND the campaign proper) start off with the very same beginning (PCs al LPD cops) and it took me several times of re-reading just to make out that they were two different group of investigators in a different time. My "question" here is this: since in part 1 there are very few information on the precinct the PCs belong to (besides the name of Lt. Vordach and a couple of names that you can pick out of the handouts you don't get much infos on the PCs collegues and the like) I decided to place them in the very same "Cheapside" precinct that is more fleshed out in the campaign proper. This way I have the possibility to entertain the players having them find out how much the precinct has changed over 154 years. I am developing a list of the divisions in the precinct and I have to put my characters in the right one to make it work properly, but I think it will work. Is this the way the story was intended to proceed? Or is there a better viewpoint on it?

NOTE 3: I like the idea of Group 5, especially when it comes down to explaining the characters why on earth (or Luna?) are they supposed to accompany the incursid mother on Mars, since they are "only cops". After all, they just work for Group 5. Genius! This brings home so much of the Mutant Chronicles spirit!

NOTE 4: "The Citadel". If "Appetite for Destruction" (and also "The Deregulation Zone") is my favorite adventure, "The Citadel" is the one I like the least. The biggest issue (for me) is what I found to be the very weak plot link that should make the characters want to find out about which one it is and go help the Doomtroopers. They find out "by chance" about the inursion (having been told by a woman kept captive in a most embarassing way) and I don't get where they would get the motivation to go and talk to Don Stevia about this. Also, I don't see how they can get out from the Hyeck District alive once they have "interrogated" Don Stevia. Can anyone from the game developing team help me out on this?
[Last edited Feb 27, 2018 13:51:33]
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