Friday, January 12, 2007

Birthday roleplaying

Scott and Jen hosted yesternight's RPG session, and they surprised me with a chocolate birthday cake!

"Hieronymous" ran a one-shot of Hystoire de Fou, an RPG by French author Denis Gerfaud- the same fellow who created Rêve. The premise is something out of Terry Gilliam's idle nightmares, where characters are suddenly in an alternate world of surreal madness.

At one point, we all rolled on a chart to see what sort of strange clothing we were wearing in the mad world. Someone quipped: "An RPG with a fashion accessory table? That's how you know it's French." One of us had on ice skates, another had yellow high-heeled shoes that fit perfectly, and I had some weird kind of sock with traction rubber on the sole. (Yes, evidently there's a word for such a thing in French.)

The session itself was a little off-kilter, since it had been a while since we'd last roleplayed. The game has a few interesting things going for it: Character creation is done on-the-fly, so it feels sort of like the Matrix when Trinity needs to pilot a helicopter. "Of course I can climb! Even though I'm a distinguished surgeon, I have a rock-climbing hobby." "Naturally, I can fight! Even though I'm a dirty hippy slacker, I once took Tai Chi." It was fun to make up in-character justifications for why you suddenly have the skill to do things that you might not normally.

Another interesting aspect of the game is that you can disbelieve nearly anything, and if you roll successfully while your insanity word (mine was "ISOLINEAR"), you can reveal a new shape to whatever it is. So instead of being beaten with baseball bats, we could've been beaten with cotton candy instead. The whole session felt a bit like a fever dream.

At any rate, I had delicious cake in reality.


Stephanie said...

Mmmmm... chocolate cake. I wish I had some of that! :-) I like that on-the-fly character makin' too! Sounds interesting... I own some of those traction socks. I usually call them slipper socks.

Heather said...

That game sounds totally kick ass.