A Return to Gaming

This past winter my significant other (Writer Girl) and I went to her cousin’s birthday. It was a significant birthday for him so the party was pretty impressive. His wife who is originally from Mexico prepared a wonderfully spicy spread which everyone could graze upon. I am really not one for large social gatherings as I find it difficult to make small talk. On this occasion however we met some of his friends who just so happen to have similar interests to both of us, but more specifically me.

That is not to say Writer Girl isn’t a geek, because she is, and that is one of the things I love about her. It’s just that her geek levels are a bit more subtle than mine where they overlap. For instance, we both like science fiction, but while my enthusiasm is more overt in that I like talking about it, reading about it, and watching it, her enthusiasm is a bit more subdued. This is likely because her geekiness leans more toward literature… not a big surprise considering that she is a writer. But I digress.

So we introduced ourselves to some of her cousin’s friends and it turns out that they too are geeks of a significantly high order. This geekiness includes Star Wars, Star Trek, Science fiction, Science, Space, and Role Playing Games. We talked about the vacation that Writer Girl and I had recently returned from where we ticked off several checks on my geek list including Star Wars at Disney Hollywood Studios, Cape Canaveral, Kennedy Space Center, and the Harry Potter parts of Universal Studios in Florida.

While we were geeking out with our new acquaintances, Writer Girl’s cousin dropped by while making the rounds at his party. The conversation turned to gaming and the beginnings of an idea of joining in on a Pathfinder game began to sprout.

Years ago, while Writer Girl and I were still in High School, we were both involved in a Dungeons & Dragons game that lasted the better part of two years. In the years since, I have continued to play in a variety of groups in spurts. The longest of which was about 5 years. I have also occasionally played in Live Action Roleplaying games like Vampire and Werewolf, but I have always preferred the old style tabletop RPG.

What I didn’t know, was that Writer Girl still has an interest in tabletop gaming. So when her cousin contacted us a couple of weeks ago to officially invite us to play, she was pretty enthused about playing again. I have been out of gaming for nearly one and half years, mostly because the Live Action game that I was playing previously wasn’t holding my interest anymore. This new game sounds like fun, and feels pretty old school. I think we’re going to have fun. And as usual, I think the dice are going to try to kill me. FUN!

Shadowrun Returns – Adventure Creation

So last night a couple of friends and I met at The Fyxx in downtown Winnipeg to begin a collaboration on a storyline for the new Shadowrun Returns game that is being released by Harebrained Studios on July 25th. When it comes to games, I am usually just in the role of one of the players. I don’t have much experience in the story telling aspect. I’ll have to admit that it really takes some coaxing for me to contribute, but I think in the end it may be worth it.

I am somewhat familiar with the Shadowrun background material as I participated in a pretty good tabletop version of the game a number of years ago. Generally speaking Shadowrun adventures have a pretty linear progression of going from point A to point B and getting back to point A again without the characters being killed. My failing when trying to come up with ideas for larger scaled stories is that I can’t picture the whole overarching concept. This is where the collaboration helps. I have a good idea about a small aspect of the story, as do my friends. Once we had tabled our ideas, we could then mould our various stories to fit together. The short chapter concept of game story development seems to work really well.

Where none of us had enough to make a full story, our combined ideas came together quite well and we now have a good base for our adventure. Now when the editors become available (and we’ve had our initial fill of playing the game when its released) we’ll be able to put together the parts to our larger adventure. It should be a lot of fun putting together dialogue and the various event triggers. I’ve always been fairly envious of game storytellers and their ability to put together a story that is fun and engaging.

One week to wait! Woohoo!