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13 October 2019 - Sunday

09-13:00 Princess World! I knew nothing about this game, but it sounded good and also had room for another player!

I was a little worried because the GM and all the other players were women and at least two of them trans (unless there's another way to take comments like "my parents used to think they only had sons"), but no one gave me a hairy enough eyeball that I noticed, so I guess it was okay? Probably?

Anyway, we had all five of the playbooks from the current beta version of the game:

  • Harvestbell the Fairy Princess
  • Princes Prism Sundown, the Skateboard Princess from the Digital Realm
  • Captain Princess Ruby, the Pirate Princess
  • Princess Anastasia, the immortal Proper Princess
  • Xeda, Explorer Princess, the Space Princess, here to appreciate Earth's diverse flora and fauna

I was Captain Princess Ruby, the Pirate Princess! My hat was inherited from my mother, the Pirate Queen! My coat was made from the hide of the first sea serpent I slew! My harpoon was never far from my hand! Nobody could stop me! I had two threads from the Proper Princess, because I told her where a treasure that had been stolen from her family was hidden, and two threads from the Skateboard Princess because I saw her fall when the viruses invaded her digital realm. I gave two threads to the Fairy Princess because she'd sailed me (once not even as a stowaway) and one to the Proper Princess because I had stolen something from her (her heart, though Ruby didn't know it).

The Princess Council had many problems to deal with, including droughts, hurricanes, necromancers with bone towers, low bandwidth, and agitated capybara people ("do capybaras even have an 'agitated' setting?"), but when the Weaver threw in "the Maiden of the Moon is unhappy", we decided to address that first. The Moon affects tides, so it must affect weather and such (as was said several times during the game, "that's just science!"), and that way we could clear up many problems at once. The Space Princess took us there in her Even Bigger Rocket, but the signs were badly placed or something, because we ended up on the dark side of the Moon, with a werewolf who didn't like visitors because he had mild social anxiety. There was some blustering on both sides but eventually we just parked our flying saucer somewhere else. We were still on the dark side of the moon, so the Fairy Princess had to stay close to the Skateboard Princess to get enough light from her LED jacket to photosynthesize an atmosphere for us. ("That's just science!")

From there, we hitched a ride with mouse truckers hauling cheese through the express tunnel to the light side of the moon, caused a commotion in the city of lunar animals, argued with an officious ferret cop, stuffed the Maiden of the Moon's chameleon butler into the Skateboard Princess's pocket when he wouldn't let us in, and climbed a very tall staircase. The Proper Princess was lagging behind due to her modest skirts, so Ruby ran back down and carried her the rest of the way up, completely unaware of the effect she was having on her. Finally, we talked our way in to the dark room where the Maiden of the Moon was lurking and found out that she was hiding because her girlfriend had dumped her.

Montage scene of cheering up the Maiden of the Moon by magic tricks (Fairy Princess), trash-talking her ex (Skateboard Princess), inducting her into the Princess Council (Proper Princess), and flirting with her (Pirate Princess). Hurray!

We only made like half a dozen rolls the whole session, so the mechanics didn't get a workout, but that was fine. We had a lot of fun anyway. In fact, I think this game was the most fun of the five I played in. It wasn't serious or intense, but that's fine. I'm not a serious or intense kind of person, really. I wonder if I could run Princess World next year?

End of the con! Even on Sunday, travelling back during the afternoon was fairly efficient and I got home and fell over in a slimy heap.

So what did I think of Big Bad Con? I think it was great, and definitely plan to go again next year! Apparently this year we completely filled the space in the traditional hotel, and all other spaces are more expensive, so I don't know exactly what will happen next year, but I am pretty sure the con will still happen.

Next year, if the schedule is the same, I will stay an extra night in the hotel so that I can game on Sunday afternoon and go home Monday morning and not die.

I was a little disappointed that the dealer's room didn't have more than I wanted to buy, but really that's my fault for having already bought everything.

Carl and the people he knows wanted to go to barbecue every night, which is not ideal, but there are many other tasty foods within walking distance of the hotel, and even more within complimentary hotel shuttle distance, so it need not always be that way.

But what about the games I played? I have thoughts!

Dungeon World (GM): I have run DW before, and people even enjoyed it, but I think that I have finally done it somewhat correctly. Map with blanks, fantastical world, etc. I didn't use fronts/grim portents in these games because they were so short, and I haven't ever done followers, but the things I did use I think I got right. Except ranges in combat, maybe. Also, using miniatures or meeples to illustrate battles is good.

Likelihood of my running this game again next year: high.

DIE: I'm sure having to pack the entire frame story and campaign into one four-hour con slot did not show this game to its best advantage, but I'm not as excited about this game as I thought I would be. Maybe it's that I never experienced a long-running campaign world until I got to college and I'm still gaming with some of those people, so I don't have the feels for the getting together again after many years. Maybe it's that I haven't watched all 46 seasons of Arrested Development or otherwise immersed myself in media where all the plot and humor comes from every character being terrible and dysfunctional. Or maybe I just don't know how to make a realistic character. Whatever the case, I didn't get into the emotional drama as much as other people seemed to. I'm also dubious about the system, since it seems to result in everyone being mortally wounded multiple times per battle, or maybe one person being untouched.

Likelihood of my playing this game in short form again: low.

Likelihood of my playing this game properly: moderate.

BFF!: Apparently I can't play kids. Or, again, maybe I just can't make realistic characters. I didn't have any great ideas for scenes, and I didn't get picked for many scenes because my character didn't have enough hooks.

Likelihood of my playing this game again: I mean, I would if someone asked.

Royal Blood: This game only tells one story, but it does it well. I tried to be clever with the junk magic and ended up too abstract to ever come up with good descriptions, but I will know better next time.

Likelihood of my playing this game again: high.

Spire: It's about elves and oppression! And although it's not Forged in the Dark, it's clearly a near cousin. The setting might be a little too well defined, but I'm sure it would be fine to pick and choose from the huge pile of fantastic weirdness rather than making everyone memorize all of it.

Likelihood of my playing this game again: high.

Princess World: This game is the general case of She-Ra, yet somehow I did not play Catra! I did play a pirate, though, so that was good. There are only five playbooks right now, but there are more on the creator's Patreon, and he plans to Kickstart an expanded version with art and stuff next spring.

Likelihood of my playing this game again: high.

Likelihood of my running this game next year: high.


    The Good Place 4.3: Are things going well? But then... OMINOUS FINAL SCENE! Shirobako 1: Okay, so making anime involves a lot of running around. I knew that. The drag races are a surprise, though.

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