Last night we did a great run playing (I finally got to play!) in the Deluge setting but using Greg Stolze’s A Dirty World as the core system. This delivered a very different experience from our previous game using Reign, but just as (more, for me) satisfying. Here’s the current text as I write this but as always the most current is at the wiki.
Scout Charity Spence — Brad Murray
Scavenger Nemo — Tim Dyke
I (Byron) took the mighty horned helmet tonight for a further exploration of Brad’s intriguing Deluge setting.
I opted to use A Dirty World for a few reasons; 1) I knew it would work since it was based on Stolze’s One Roll Engine, 2) I had a pretty cool couple of visuals, 3) the table is amazingly forgiving for my awkward at times GMing and 4) I wanted Brad to play in the setting he was describing.
Charity (Brad) and Nemo (Tim) have been called before the Board of Technology with a mission, there has been no contact from the community of Port Haney for a few months and there have been rumours of something… odd going on in the area former called Maple Ridge. One garrulous old Technocrat of Theology understands why the renowned scout Charity is going, but why send that skulking scavenger Nemo? Charity graciously offers to leave Tim behind and take the Technocrat in his place. The curmudgeon quickly defers this honour and withdraws his complaint.
The Council of Technocrats concede to send a mail man in advance of the two and to arrange transport from the Centre to Port Haney.
Charity and Nemo head down off the mountain to the small seaside community of Burrard, where a skiff awaits them. Before they can board they are offered refreshments and relaxation, but since the two are under an hour into their journey they decline.
Nemo and Charity find themselves beseeched by Pearl of Burrard who implores the two to take a small, simple package to her sister Pearl at the Centre. Nemo and Charity see no reason to doubt the earnest woman and quickly agree to her requests. Nemo gets some fresh cheese and seal jerky as a bonus.
The pair are poled up the inlet towards the area formerly known as Port Moody. The captain of the skiff dumps them a bit further north than usual in the midst of the jungle and quickly hightails it out of there. Leaving Nemo and Charity to find their own way to the Centre with a vague wave of his hand. Nemo and Charity have been in this sort of situation before, without sharing a word they scope out the shadows following them. When the leader steps from behind a crumbled ruin, both are ready for them.
Tim and Brad both rolled very strong Observation rolls here so knew how many people were there and almost down to how old their clothing was.
“Halt. We aim to relieve you of those items you’re carrying.” begins the scruffy attired leader holding a massive machete.
“Listen,” begins Nemo, “we know what you need and want, we’re like you. We can help reconnect the mail and…”
Charity unleashes a blast from her shotgun, killing the would-be bandit outright. From the tress, both note the other shadows slinking into the wet, shadows, intent now on easier prey.
Tim rolled a Persuasive Honesty roll, while Brad rolled Vigorous Wrath. Tim got the higher set, which ruined the set the NPC rolled, allowing Brad to pepper them with buckshot. ORE is a great system.
BJM: Charity rolled Graceful Courage — a calm and accurate discharge from the shotgun. It was only later I got wrathful from losing some rolls.
JBB: One of these days we’ll have a game with negotiating that ends without gunfire.
BJM: Dude, there’s one later in the session that ends in LESBIAN SEX — you are a hard man to please.
Along the way Nemo offers to fix a farmer’s tractor, the farmer points him to a rusted out set of metal with four large rubber tires half sunken in a field. They ask about Rose of Burrard, the farmer, lonely sounds intrigued but hasn’t heard of her but directs them on towards the Centre.
As they approach the Centre they’re accosted by Jak and Bil, two young guards standing atop the berm that surrounds the Centre. A berm made of the concrete of the collapsed high rises surrounded the centre, behind the berm is a deep moat that’s been expanded and deepened multiple times. Jak and Bil do their best to stop the two travellers but once they find out it is the scout Charity and notorious scavenger Nemo they quickly become fawning fanboys and direct the two into the Centre.
The Centre (Coquitlam Centre) is a shopping mall that’s seen better days, the roof leaks, the metal has corroded into rust and one former shopping department has collapsed outwards and been converted into a floating dock used for loading and offloading supplies.
Brad’s built a handy percentile role for deluge and it was here I realized what the Centre needed.
Nemo, being an old hand in scavenging finds the old directory and leads Charity down to the administration level looking for the Mayor of the Centre. One problem, the bottom floor of the Centre is in about 5 inches of water, but they find an old drunk, Charity kicks him awake and he waves them in the general direction of Zed, the mayor. “It’s the busy shop with the people going in and out of it.”
Back on the second floor, Nemo quickly finds Zed’s, and they quickly find Zed, sitting behind a counter and living in seeming luxury, as above him a flickering but steadily burning lightbulb above his head. On the walls behind him are archaic power tools. He doesn’t seem to do much business, focusing on his mayoral duties. Charity and Nemo introduce themselves and Zed quickly shuts down the shop and insists they dine with him.
They follow him down to the dining hall (food court) there are holes in the wall but as long as there aren’t any holes overhead, the people of the Centre seem happy to live in the wet. Zed orders a suckling pig (or two) roasted for this auspicious occasion. Nemo watches them handcrank the piglet and offers a complex solution that Zed nods and smiles and says sure. Nemo fashions an automatic roasting device, using an old chain from a chainsaw or bike and a treadmill. Nemo suggests they walk on it, but one clever lad thinks walking another pig on it would be much easier. The crowd gasps in awe as Nemo’s Roasting Device works and he gains much standing in the community of this delapitated mall. Meanwhile, Charity and Zed talk business. Zed confesses that things aren’t great in the Centre, they’ve lost their shipwright and without one things look bleak. Perhaps Charity could find a way to… liberate one from Port Haney? Charity believes in the necessity of a shipwright to the further survival of the Centre and agrees.
Tim rolled a Patient Demonstration success so taught the people a better way to roast meat, while Brad failed in a roll against Zed (NPC) but only barely, but that’s enough to see that kidnapping a shipwright is essential for the Centre to survive.
BJM: In failing her check, Charity gets Corruption shifted up. She’s accepted the idea that kidnapping is okay. Not the character I intended, but cooler in a way.
Nemo discovers Rose lives in the Centre, selling chickens and eggs to meagre profits and eking out a living. Nemo delivers the package from Pearl, but something doesn’t jibe, she grabs it too quickly and goes to tuck it away, but the wrapping rips and a stained mahogany box peeks through. Nemo and Charity converge on the poor woman, Nemo grabs back the box realizing this is something valuable from the Mountain whereas Charity wants to aid Rose. Rose’s attempt to escape fail and Nemo grabs the box, just before the butt of Charity’s shotgun smacks his elbow. Rose makes a desperate plea to the scavenger soul of Nemo, “Why does it always have to go UP the mountain? There are people down here who need just as much… no more… than those atop the mountain. We need this to survive.” Nemo acknowledges the wisdom of these words and permits her to keep the box, but he is a bit envious of her, since he hasn’t found much to scavenger out east yet.
Ok… Tim and Brad both Cunningly Observed Rose was up to something. Then Tim when to grab it back Vigorous Defiance whereas Brad wanted to aid Rose with Vigorous Courage while Rose tried Graceful Defiance to get away. Tim got the best roll, then Brad and Rose got none. However, Rose used Persuasive Honesty to convince Tim to give her back the back, with Brad’s gobble dice eating up Tim’s successes Rose kept the box.
Which was a McGuffin until I realized it was a tech McGuffin!
BJM: Charity’s Vig/Cour roll was an attempt to smack Nemo’s arm away with the butt of her shotgun. Her failure causes a shift on Wrath. Gettin’ mad here.
In the morning the pair met a salty old sailor, likely the only one brave enough to navigate the Pitt Bay (Pitt River) in the Centre. An uneventful crossing and Nemo disappointed he can’t recognize any potential looting places. Charity and the captain trade anecdotes.
On the Ridge side, they’re deposited north of Port Haney. They’re being watched but in a casual way. They arrive at night and in the dark, a guttering torch invites them onwards. They’re escorted to a tavern, when outside the tavern two lean, viscous seadog walruses leap out of the water, teeth sharp and savage. Charity inquires about these, seadogs, turns out they’ve been around for about 30 years and came from the sea and only in the past decade have they domesticated them. But they’re still more beast than pet.
Bedtime. Except Charity and Nemo want to explore. Nemo stumbles in the muck and rain and is immediately escorted back inside to share scavenging stories, which works as a great distraction for Charity to explore the town. The ships here are indeed much, much better than any she’s recently seen. There are entire logbooms near the shipyards for shaping. She sketches some rough drawings for the Technocrats atop the mountain. The boats are sturdier, leak less, ride higher in the water, seem to almost skim across the surface.
Tim failed his Sneak roll, Brad succeeded.
In the morning they meet the mayor of the town, a hearty young woman who commands respect. She and Charity show an immediate familiarity. They swap maps but the mayor is holding something back. Charity, in kind, holds back some of her maps too; pulling out an older map of the area. Nemo, slightly bored and missing the civility (and ruins) of the city spots a young girl bounding up and down bursting to share something with someone. It’s the mayor’s child (a girl of 10 – 12) and she rushes up to Nemo, who refuses to ask the question until to bursts out of her like a waterfall off a cliff, “You haven’t seen oobec… that’s where you wanna see… oobec… that’s where the trees come from.”
“Can you spell that for me?” asks Nemo.
“No. It’s spelt like it sounds I reckon,” she replies.
“Where is it? Can you draw it for me?”
So she does, by drawing an arrow pointing upwards at a tree on the floor.
Frustrated, Nemo filches a map from Charity.
Opposed roll, Tim tries to Steal from Brad. And it’s close, both got sets. 2×6 for Tim, 2×4 for Brad.
BJM: Charity’s rolls is a Vigorous Courage — basically if Nemo fails, she notices and punches him in the mouth. She fails and again takes a shift increasing her Wrath. Grr grr. Pretty soon she is going to be more effective punching the weak than in fair fisticuffs. As a player, I KNOW I am going to use whatever is most effective to get what I want.
Nemo has the girl point on the correct map he’s just lifted where these trees are. It turns out a bit further north from where they landed. Charity and Nemo talk later about what they’ve learned, Charity pulls out an even older map and between the two of them they decipher ‘oobec’ refers to an old UBC Research Forest to the north of Maple Ridge.
Brad and Tim succeed on a Knowledge roll.
In the last scene, Charity is trying to convince the leader of the community here (a strong woman like Charity herself) to send some shipwrights to Coquitlam Centre. Charity is prepared to kidnap (and her increasing Corruption ensures that) but Brad wants to resolve it ethically if possible. They discuss passionately and agree to work something out, though it’s not clear exactly what got resolved. Charity seems to have made her point, but the proof will be in the pudding.
Brad makes a Corrupt Persuasion check here because Charity’s Corruption has increased, so this is essentially a seduction. Certainly the scene contains some sexual tension. Tim assists with a Patient Demonstration roll, giving charity a width increase which seals the deal. I (Brad) read this as Tim actually making the point, but the leader’s personal interest in Charity is what actually makes her accede.
Charity’s success nets her another shift for Corruption.
BJDK: Considering I didn’t take a note about the rolls, and winged it from memory, it’s interesting to see how Charity could become a Wrathful, Vengeful Scout.
Charity dismisses Nemo with a wave and snuffs the light.
And that’s where we ended it.
–BMurray (with B.Kerr)