|Note: I am writing this report about six months after it happened. I did record the last two sessions of play and have listened to them again in order to put this together.|
I indeed had to return to Puerto Rico in June, so my friends and I decided to do our best to finish this game in the time I had. When we got together to play, we decided to wrap up the series in two sessions to be played over the two weeks I had available. That meant condensing four episodes into two action-packed extravaganzas. I merged the Screen Presences for episodes 2-3 and 4-5, giving us two final episodes that looked like this: 2/3/2/2 & 3/2/3/3. If you have played PTA you can see how that second merged episode is totally nuts; if you haven’t, the first spread is fine, with one spotlight character (3), but the second has three spotlight characters, meaning each of them is THE main focus of the episode, if that makes any sense. I knew that this would be tricky, to say the least, but we girded our loins and plunged back into the story.
My friends and I got to play the next episode of our Primetime Adventures game, Star Wars: The Sith Triumvirate. I will be writing a complete episode report in the next few days, but I wanted to put out this one tip for all Primetime Adventures players out there independent of the write-up (I know those go long and not everyone reads them).
When playing an episode where a player character(s) has a Screen Presence of 3, sit the player(s) immediately to the right of the Producer. Since game play in PTA goes clockwise from the Producer, when the last round of play comes about, this will leave the character(s) with the main spotlight to have their scene last, thus giving them the chance to end their spotlight episode with a bang!
We learned this the hard way. The character with SP 3 was sitting first to the left of the Producer. When he framed his scene, it turned out to be the climatic scene for that character, and in effect ended the episode, even though we went to the next scene and fought with it for almost 20 minutes before we truly realized the episode had already (organically) ended and we were, honestly, just messing things up. If this player had been sitting to my right, that scene could have properly closed the episode with the proper bang.
Consider it for your next PTA game.
After playing the first regular episode for about 2 1/2 hours, and knowing I would be flying back to Miami in a few days, everyone agreed to push ahead and play another episode, even though it was just shy of Midnight. A bathroom break later, we sat down to play. This episode was the Enforcer’s character spotlight episode.
Season 1, Webisode
I dove right into the thick of things, riding on the momentum of the previous episode, and used the Archivist’s Next Time On scene to open. As he looked out the observation deck of his Death Star, a contingent of Storm Troopers surrounded him, while one of his officers asked him to please not make this difficult. Because of the time they had served the Sith Lord, the officer was willing to let him go if he did it in the next 5 seconds. The Archivist pondered for a moment, and as he was about to accept the offer, one of the Storm Troopers started to count. Big mistake. The Archivist called a conflict to deal with these traitorous scum; he won, easily (I didn’t provide much opposition either, just enough to get some Fan Mail on the table), leading to his Next Time On moment as he Force-choked the officer whom he had give explicit orders to not be disturbed. The deed done, and knowing he had just signed his own warrant, the Archivist engaged the Death Star’s auto-destruct, though not before using the station’s laser to obliterate the cloning facility on the planet below, along with a good chunk of the planet itself.
Read the reports for the Pilot.
On Wednesday 4/28 we got together to play the first episode of the regular series of Star Wars: The Sith Triumvirate Primetime Adventures game.The players were actually quite pumped for this, especially given it would be the one opportunity for us to play before my return to Miami later in the week.
Before the game, one of the players in Braulio’s regular Star Wars RPG game showed up to check out the game, urged by Braulio. It gave us a chance to use something I did not remember reading in the book and which I cannot recall ever reading about in any PTA Actual Play: we had an Audience. This player, who at first was like, “PTA sounds kinda dumb,” read the blog post I made on the Pilot and changed to a resounding, “PTA sounds cool.” Later on, another friend of the game group showed up and became part of the Audience as well.
In addition to the Audience, we also added a new protagonist to the group. The player made a Mandalorian Bounty Hunter whose issue deals with his quest to become a new Mandalore. The Bounty Hunter has some connection to House Fett (though he’s not a member of it), quite specifically, a Contact who’s a direct descendant of Boba Fett.
I got some heat from one of my players because (and he’s absolutely right) I forgot to include some other scenes from the Pilot in my report, perhaps undercutting the contribution of the Enforcer and Archivist, so this time I took notes of the scenes we played during each round (having left behind, again, my digital recorder, great podcaster that I am).
I warn you, it is long.
Last Wednesday (4/22) night, I went to hang out with my friend Braulio (whom some may have heard in the recent Kobe, Japan episode of The Gamer Traveler Podcast) at a local game store. That night he would be running his ongoing Star Wars RPG game and the idea was for me to go and play an NPC for the night, just to have some fun and have a chance to clear my head after many days spent in the hospital with Mom.
We got there around 6 pm, because the group had agreed to try to start earlier than the usual 8 pm starting time. While we waited, we played the Star Wars Miniatures Game, my first time playing it (I played the Rebellion and I lost). During the course of the game, two of his players arrived, and then they played a round of the minis game. By 9:30 pm it was clear that the other two players we were expecting were not going to arrive, so instead of not roleplaying at all, I suggested, “Hey, we can play Primetime Adventures!”
I gave Braulio my copy of PTA when I came to PR in Feb, so he had already read the book and was itching to play it. Mind you, we didn’t have the book with us, so we’d be going based on my play experience and what Braulio could remember. I explained the premise of PTA to one of the players and he was enthused, but the other one wasn’t too keen (he associated my mention of “story/narrative-driven” with Vampire/World of Darkness, and he apparently had some bad experiences with some WoD players once). I told him, let’s do the pitch session; if we’re not all fully into it, invested into the idea, we don’t play. He agreed to that.
Since we were on a Star Wars mindset already due to their regular game and the minis game we all played, I had the idea of pitching the same setting I’ve played for the last two years at Gen Con (and which I hope to be able to continue later this year): Star Wars Episode LV (55). Basically, it’s a thousand years after Return of the Jedi, a time when House Skywalker has become Sith and established itself as rulers over the galaxy, where Coruscant is orbited by six Death Stars, when there are the stirrings of a new Rebellion to bring down the Skywalkers once and for all. They bought in, adding they wanted to play characters that were, instead of members of the fledgling Rebellion, part of the Sith side, and explore themes of vengeance and redemption.
While reading through Twitter this afternoon, I caught an exchange dealing with Primetime Adventures. One guy mentioned our Star Wars PTA game podcasted through Canon Puncture and I chimed in with a thanks. He had this to say:
<p><a href=”http://tweetpaste.thingamaweb.com/embed/14826/” mce_href=”http://tweetpaste.thingamaweb.com/embed/14826/” target=”_blank”>View exedore6’s tweet</a></p> <p>
I am of course humbled by this, but it also makes me feel good. That game is a great one, and it’s awesome that others are enjoying it as much as we are.
Back at Gen Con, I was part of a Star Wars Episode LV, a Primetime Adventures game run by Judd Karlman (Sons of Kryos Podcast) and starring Paul Tevis (Have Games, Will Travel Podcast), Rich Rogers (CanonPuncture Podcast), Mick Bradley (The Game That May Be Podcast) and myself.
Set 1,000 years after Return of the Jedi, the Republic has now become as corrupt as the old Empire, and the dynasty of Skywalker rules with an iron fist from Coruscant, confident in the security the six orbiting Death Stars provide it. But there is hope, two ancient droids carrying information that can topple the corrupt republic.
I played a jaded, reckless and tired Jedi who is simply just tired of running from the Republic. He has learned that he is a descendant of Anakin Solo, son of the legendary Han Solo and Leia Skywalker, which makes him a Skywalker as well, and a blood relative of the despots running the galaxy. Taking the new name Obi Wan Skywalker in remembrance of a time when the name Skywalker stood for good and when Jedis were the guardians of justice, he has decided to take on the Galactic Republic headfirst.