So we wrap up Motobushido, right? And the players are curious to hear what else I want to run. Right now my play list is:
* The One Ring
* The Clay That Woke
I pull the TOR books off the shelf. I have the core book, Rivendell, Darkening of Mirkwood and Tales from the Wilderlands. Everything is beautifully produced of course.
I open up the TOR books and start showing off the maps — there’s a neat metagame element to moving your company of fellows around! And we talk about the various cultures you can play! And I talk about the valor/will split when you meet someone new. All these little flourishes and gestures I’ve been picking up the past few months.
“So like…what do you actually do?” someone asks.
I stop. “Well I’d probably just run stuff from Tales. Here are some thumbnails. Let’s see…this one, you help some dude out of the forest. Here’s another one…something about a hobbit stew…hm.”
They’re staring at me. Eyebrows are going up. I start panicking, which means I start improvising.
“Uh um well, I’m the first to confess that honestly I don’t know much about the Lord of the Rings stuff. So I’m relying on the system to barf up Tolkien for me. And so I guess you…walk around doing Tolkieny things?”
More staring. Then someone asks, “So is there a premise?”
Me: “Uh…it happens between The Hobbit and LOTR. There’s still a Shadow, there are still bad guys, but it’s not all-out war yet. Just spooky stuff.”
Them: “Are you standing up to the Shadow?”
Me: “I…think mostly you’re avoiding it. There’s lots of stuff about running away.”
Eyebrows are now going the opposite direction. Many furrowed brows.
Me: “I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT TO DO WITH THIS GAME.”
So The One Ring got shelved and the mean boys laughed at me for buying four books of a game they all know full well is not in my wheelhouse. :-/