This is the first in a series of write-ups and thoughts on how inhabitants of the Ninth World might get about, conduct trade (or even war) based on musings and issues regarding travel as faced by players in my Numenera game. Use it as you will, or at the very least, I hope it gives you a springboard to jump from.
I want to create my own world for a numenera campaign. I would keep the previous 8 civilization idea and the whole ninth world aspect but it would take place in a different setting. basically every item, type of building, artifact etc. can be found, the only difference being the continent and custom made cities and areas. Also the same groups of people will be found such as aeon priests and the brotherhood who hunts mutants(forgot the name) etc.
I have a secret project thats comming up! Hopefully I will be able to unveil it sooner than later.
The Numenera rules are straight forward. When players hesitate over or quibble over a rule mid game, I get annoyed. I want to keep the game flowing. True, some players like to rules lawyer, but sometimes intelligent people over analyze simple problems. I see it all the time with gifted kids when I cover classes as a substitute teacher.
Part 1 if you missed it.
Day two of GenCon comes with a full schedule. I had an early 8:00 A.M. game of Dresden Files, which happens to be another Fate system game. I had never played Fate prior to this year’s GenCon and it was nice to get in a couple of sessions. It’s also interesting playing in an established game world where some people know everything about the setting. It brings some interesting twists into the game play.
On my way to the exhibit hall, I swung through the game hall and stopped and played a couple rounds of Geek Out to try to win a chance to play Settlers of Catan with Wil Wheaton. Alas, my knowledge of Mortal Kombat and Robert Downey Jr. movies was not up to the task. Off to the dealer hall I went, swinging by the Drive Thru booth to see if they still had Cypher cards. Alas, they were sold out. David was in the booth however (Shocking right?). We chatted a bit about the game from the previous night, and he indicated that he thought we had done really well. This got me rather exited that we might have a chance to play with Monte on Saturday.
Next up for me was True Dungeon. True Dungeon is best described as a Dungeons and Dragons themed haunted house. There are puzzles, and monsters to fight in the dungeon, along with loot to be found. If you have never done True Dungeon I suggest everyone try it once, as it is a cool experience. After that a quick dinner with some of my gaming group, then I went over to the Keith Baker (Eberron / Gloom) meet up. I had never met Keith before, but had played his games, and am a big fan of Eberron. It was just a small group discussion chatting about things he has worked on, or will be working on. He answered all our questions, and it was just really cool to have some time to just sit and chat with him.
A short while after that, I got sucked into a Werewolf game. We played several rounds of that, until around midnight I received the text. “Our group advanced to the final round of the Numenera tournament.” I’m pretty sure I did a fist pump or two, and I may have even given out a little school girl scream of delight. That gave me a boost of energy, so of course I ended up playing Werewolf until almost 2 in the morning.
Before turning in, I checked twitter, and the last thing I read is:
Monte Cook tweet 1: Tomorrow’s game is with the group that did the best from among all the previous Numenera games, so I’m expecting it to be pretty awesome.
Monte Cook tweet 2: No pressure, though.
Great, that made it easy to go to sleep.
Next the weekend comes…
I planned a very busy schedule for this GenCon. I was filled with 2-3 events every day. Prior to the convention I was not planning to attend the Numenera Launch event, but Monte just kept teasing good things, so I decided to go and try to get in without a ticket, so I knew I was going to drop my Thursday morning Dirty World event.
We arrived in Indianapolis in the middle of the afternoon of Wednesday. After a quick check in and stretch, we headed down to the convention center to pick up our will call badges and tickets. We were through the line in minutes. I think we just beat the rush as about an hour later, I believe the wait had ballooned out to an hour. We then went to our traditional GenCon Wednesday dinner as a group at the Claddagh Irish Pub. I then finished my night by playing a Cyberpunk Fate Accelerated game with Mike Shea (AKA Slyflourish). It was fun, cyberpunky and the world was at stake. Mike did a great job of DMing and I learned several things from him.
Thursday was Numenera Day 1 for me. One of my gaming group and I hit the Drive Thru booth first thing Thursday morning, he grabbed a core book, and I grabbed a GM screen (I figured it was finally time to have a customizable screen). He got his book signed by Monte, and I got to say hi, there was no line at this point. I also got to say hello to Shanna and David (Although I didn’t realize it was David from the Ninth World podcast at the time).
From there I walked the dealer hall, and demoed some games. Then I grabbed a late lunch, and went to hang out by the launch event. I waited in the “You don’t have a ticket” line, but I got in. Here, following an amazing intro by Shanna (At least it wasn’t a blood ritual) we had the announcement of Bruce Cordell joining the Monte Cook Games team. Then some news and updates, followed by a long super awesome question and answer session. For those who watch the video, I tried to get Bruce to spill some dirt on Monte, but all I could get was car surfing.
After a quick dinner, I was off to play in the Numenera game hosted by Monte Cook Games. These games were technically a tournament, but I just wanted to get a good feel for Numenera before I ran it for my home game. My group of Nick, Aaron, Yoshi, and Mike were awesome, and our DM of course was David. Some things I remember (Without giving away any story)
Jack to Jack – “You Complete Me.”
“She makes the best onion thing soup in town.”
“You are shoved in the corner and cannot move.”
Key + Pool + GM Intrusion
Me: “Can I figure out how this complex this works, and turn it off?”
David: “You can try.”
Me: ”I rolled a natural 20.”
David: “You pull the plug and the lights go out.”
With the adventure over, we parted ways having had a super awesome good time. David was a great GM, and our group really game together, had fun, and discovered.
I was going to do Thursday and Friday together, but this is already pretty long, so I will put Friday into another post.
I'm taking a quick break from my GenCon Recaps to share something that has been building in me the past few weeks. I'm going to outline a statement of what I think it means to be a Ninth Worlder and I hope you will agree with and maybe even augment what I share.
Please remember- I do not work for Monte Cook Games. I am just a fan like you, I just started the podcast Transmissions from the Ninth World with my friends Eric Coates and Jim Ryan. Then I started this site for fans to build a community. Since then, I have been afforded the opportunity to build a relationship with the Numenera team, including helping them in the booth at GenCon (because I wanted to) and being named to the Numenera Editorial Board. But I have always sought to represent the fans of the game in my endeavors. And I assure you, from my observations, the team at Monte Cook Games holds you and your interest in very high regard. You truly are why they are doing this.
So, here we go:
Being a Ninth Worlder means...
...Caring about your fellow human being above all else.
...Being welcoming to people from all backgrounds and reserving any personal judgement.
...Being generally positive and encouraging others to share their ideas.
...Being entitled to have an opinion of your own that, while completely valid, does not invalidate the opinions of others.
...Being constructive in our criticism, hopefully tempered with understanding that we are all flawed beings who are allowed to make mistakes on occasion.
...Being passionate about sharing Numenera with positive people who may also enjoy playing it.
...Being ambassadors to not only the game of Numenera, but the hobby of gaming in and of itself.
...Being supportive of the Numenera game, the people of Monte Cook Games and other players of the game.
...Being respectful of the Numenera game and the players of the game.
...Seeking to never be mean-spirited, aggressive, condescending, dismissive or abusive to another human being.
Consider this a first draft, but I am seeking for this to be at the core of what this fan base stands for and certainly what it takes to remain a member of this site. I am willing to have an open discussion on this, but if it is more comfortable for you, please feel free to PM me your feelings on this.
Also, please understand that this is a set of ideals and not intended to be used as iron-fisted rules, forcing all to believe as I believe. But I do think that they are worthy aspirations and I hope that others on here will agree to aim towards them.
The Missing Caravan was written during the Numenera playtest for Kickstarter bakers. It best suits for a group of three players.
Posting this here for those that are interested. It's am an assemble-your-own GM screen.
Everyone, Shanna has asked us to leave Monte alone for a day to give him time to mourn his father's passing. I say, let Monte decide when he's done. So far, Ninth Worlders have been an incredible, amazing bunch. Let's keep that good feeling going.
So here's what I'm asking of each of you: Respect Monte's grief. Give him as much time as he needs to get himself together, and let him decide when it's time to go back to work.
Now if you'll excuse me, there's a flying castle on the horizon...
This territory is known for its cobalt-blue spires and the affluence generated by the surrounded terraces. Each of the spires is controlled by a noble family, with the tallest spire being home to the ancestral Medusa House.
The vast majority of the population, who toil in the farmland, have a Corvée switch in their DNA that allows people with the right equipment and genetic code (possessed by those of the noble houses) to control them like game pieces. The family with the highest permissions is that of House Medusa.
The Elder of House Medusa had been kept alive for generations through an oddity that repeatedly clones him and transfers his mind into the clone son each generation. This process of survival has been ended after a torrid love affair ended with him and his male heir's death, leaving the house fallen.
The head of House Connrit has captured and holds the daughter of the old head of the Medusa Family as his "wife" in the goal of forcing her to bear a son and restore the genetic markers and insert himself into the immortality process.
Ok, so finally caught up a bit on RL that I can reminisce on the fantastic journey that was my first GenCon.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 14, 2013
I drove up with two friends (it was supposed to be three, but one had a family emergency) on Wednesday. Chris Fitzgerald and Thomas Fleming were both serving as Numenera GMs too. 9 hours from Charlotte to Indianapolis. It was an easy ride as it was pretty nice out. We shared what we got out of the convention adventure, talking about what we were reading between the lines and ideas we had to add to aspects to the game.
Wednesday night was just unloading in our hotel, getting their badges and grabbing a nice dinner- SUSHI! As I tweeted about, in typical gamer fashion we handled the fact that we had three guys and two beds, so we rolled to see who got their own bed. I proposed a dice mechanic- highest on a d6 got their own bed unless there was a tie, and then the person that wasn't a double would win. Tom rolled a 1, Chris rolled a 6. But then I rolled a 6. Tom won by my dice mechanic exception.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 15, 2013
Thursday morning came early and we headed in. I met with Shanna Germain for the first time face to face (big hug- SQUEE!) and got my badge from her. I followed her through the hall. I'll admit to being a little convention jaded, having attended two Comic Cons ('98, '00), several Dragon*Cons, a ton of HeroesCons, as well working several Arnold Expos and Olympia Expos. But still, this was GenCon. Pretty amazing even though I was pretty focused on the task at hand.
I got to the booth and met Monte Cook himself (inner fanboy yell) and Charles M. Ryan. I quickly met both Christopher West, the Numenera cartographer (I got my Kickstarter backed maps from him), and Ray Vallese, an editor on the Numenera projects and all around great guy. Then, I helped get the booth ready and we anticipated a crowd up front running up and wanting the book. We had a small rush, but we had a lot more curious folks. I spent a lot of my time in the booth explaining what the game was- setting and game mechanic. It's what they called my pitch. It was passionately delivering this pitch, as a fan and not an employee of Monte Cook Games, that made me lose my voice by Saturday night. I spent nearly the whole day Thursday in the booth- 9:30-3:30 pretty much straight.
Then Chris and I left to join the gang in the conference room for the Numenera Launch session. It was a bit surreal with each of us carrying two of the Numenera branded standees through the convention center (we were either too lazy, too rushed for time or too worried about what it would entail to break them down before we left). Chris and I helped to finish the setup and to take tickets. I had also, in the rush agreed to record the video of the launch using Shanna's iPad. This of course was me not thinking about holding an iPad steady and properly aimed for one hour and forty-five minutes. Ouch. If you get to see the video, please don't send me your dry cleaning bill. ;)
The launch began with a dramatic moment from Shanna, with her introducing the shibboleth, "Iadace". Of course, the big news was the announcement of the addition of Bruce R Cordell to the creative team. Monte shared the story of how they met when they were 14 in shop class. Pretty damn cool. The launch, apart from talking about the line and some of the visions they have for the line, had a lengthy Q&A session. It was a very interesting and exciting discussion which filled my heart with more joy about the future of Numenera.
After a short break, we got to run part one of the first round of Numenera games. My table of guys were great- Nick Barone, Aaron Peterson, Michael Sanders, Troy Pichelman and Yoshi [last name escapes me]. Only Aaron and Michael knew each other prior to the game, but the whole group gelled really fast and they were very giving. I won't go into details in case someone else gets to play the adventure called "The Vortex", which Monte has said will be released as one of the first Glimmers. I will give you some of my favorite call outs:
"The building you are on disappears beneath you."
"She wasn't telling you about her infertility, was she? She always tells people that too soon."
I should add that this game was literally the best GMing experience of my life. No exaggeration.
After the games, which went great, we were invited to join Bruce, Colin McComb and Ray for a drink with some game industry luminaries. We met some great, very influential people and it was an awesome experience. A highlight included a white haired, bearded fellow walking by and the casual regard, "Oh, it's Ed." As in Ed Greenwood. And that is how we ended Thursday.
I'll cover the rest of the show in a following post.