Session Zero Dawn
Man…they say life finds a way. In our post Fall world, we have SEVEN families. 5 PCs two NPCs – because the rules say I can add a couple!
The scum of the earth inherited the might of the armies before the fall.
Wonders of the Before are hoarded by military, researchers and the wealthy.
The collapse of societies help contribute to the fall.
The fall was long ago, many do not remember how it played out.
The fall was likely driven by scientific research. The Illuminati know where the origins of the fall is and they also know the Digital Echoes were a factor.
That. That all came from setup, the rules RAW. 100%.
The PC Families
Five Fingers of Midas (The Gilded Company of Merchants) Housed in a mountain vault they are the most “together” of the families and EVERYONE trades with them. They are collectors, elegant and all about the open markets. Bon the Thumb of Midas (Envoy) is the family’s leader, he’s expected to bring in new recruits to grow the Family.
The Fakabat (Lawgivers o/t Wasteland) More like Extortionists of the Wasteland! Descendants of cops & robbers they govern by threats and promises and respect. Most families recognize these hired guns as the local law. Max (Survivor) is an agent and has sworn to keep Bon safe. High on the family’s worst criminals list is Vegas. She’s an exile of the Five Fingers of Midas.
The Illuminati (The Enclave of Bygone Lore). These hoarders of wonders are a loud, disorganized family of families. Ruled by the loudest and most interesting they were recently raided by Vegas who kicked their asses and stole quantum batteries from their stores. Jalel (Seeker) is an outsider and is looking for a way into a floating research facility, it is rumored to house various pre Fall wonders.
The Nokk (Pioneers o/t Depths) These nomadic aquatic cyborgs have most of their people under the sea. Ruled by a technocratic council they are the rulers of Atlantis.
Thaddeus (Scavenger) is an agent of the Nokk. He works closely with Bon when he’s on land.
The Forsaken (The uplifted Children of Mankind) These designer pets were abandoned after the Fall. These predators are ruled by the strong and have serial codes as names. The lower number signify strength and order of creation. EFTP-007 is a tiger(Remnant) and outsider looking for tech to help increase the declining families numbers.
The NPC families.
Hundred Handers (The Tyrant Kings) Families of veterans that survived the fall are ruled by battle companies in council. They have fought side by side with the Nokk against the Digital Echoes. They have also lost a cache of Doomsday weapons to Vegas and her band of troublemakers. Their lands are settled and patrolled. They know if you crossed their borders.
Digital Echoes (Synthetic Hive) The Guardians of the singularity. Known by their drones and ghost holograms. They have a cold war going with the Illuminati and refer to the Forsaken as ‘cousins’. All the Families have important nodes that belong to the Digital Echoes. No one has dared to unlock these nodes. Everyone knows they could strike at any moment.
We started play at the massive destruction of a town by some large scale weapons discharge. Jalel and “Seven” were en route to the floating research facility which was directly over the destroyed town. They both want access to the facility. They see a lot of fused materials, rock, bone, wood, etc. The area is extremely heated. No sign of attackers. Seven, the only one with comms gear!, tries to reach anyone around and gets a response from a feminine, digitized voice.
“Cousin, we have lost a key to the Cloud facility. Should Vegas get all the keys she will have the weaponry stored there. Will you help us?”
Seven knows this is the Digital Echoes. When their families fought the DE called the Forsaken ‘cousin’.
Thaddeus, Bon, and Max quickly arrive to investigate. Thaddeus cobbles together a sensor and discovers a strong quantum energy signature, they figure the energy discharge came from directly above and past the floating facility.
I hard zoom out at this point. That scene is done and I want them to feel the Zoom Out move, and I broke the rules, I let them all use the move – because we’re learning.
Next game we’ll get into the families, possibly some quick characters as I suspect they will all have different agendas.
I’m pretty sure this First age is all about Vegas and those Doomsday weapons. I wanna talk about that because that shit was Sorcery!
I picked two NPC factions to add to the creation because I know my players and the RB allowed for it. The Tyrant Kings PB can lose a cache of Doomsday weapons as a Threat Option, so I took it. Then the lawgivers have a rad AF history option “which of you has raised the land’s worst criminal?” The Merchants volunteered. Then that same option says “which of you were victimized by that criminal?” BAD ASS!!!
The Illuminati took it.
And it all clicked. That worst criminal is Vegas, I immediately said. She has those Doomsday weapons. I asked the Illuminati player why them? He replied she stole the batteries from us to power those weapons.
And Vegas was born.
I think we tripped over one thing. Under the history options the wording. Some say: “Which one of you” and many say: “Which of you…”. We took the literal path and let many PCs in where it said “which of you…” instead of just one. This seemed wrong when we got to the “worst criminal” option for the Law Giver, that started as “Which of you” but there should only be one family that raised the worst criminal, not many, right?
I’ll post up our (re-drawn) map and r-map. I look forward to comparing notes with Paul Beakley and his game (maybe even a podcast?!). My folks were pretty stoked afterward and I must say this is pretty fricken great. This’ll be our winter game and I’ll be paying attention about how to present this in a one-shot for con games. I’d want the creation bits, that’s where the magic and buy-in is.
I went all in when I backed Legacy. So I got these incredible cardstock play sheets…that the players are afraid to use!!! I was worried the setup might become bonkers without some restrictions. I voiced veto power at anything that felt zany to me and it all worked out nice. I’m looking forward to running this thing!