Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The End of the War of the Cross







Beginning
I ran a one shot over the weekend for 2 of my 3 regular players. The 3rd was out of town. Instead of running a continuation in the normal game, we opted to go with something different. I thought something more high energy and potentially high excitement, with dice gimmicks could be fun. Sadly, I slept in and was not able to work in the dice gimmicks. Instead, I came up with quick characters via Ghosts of Albion for a game set in Theah, AEG’s 7th Sea setting.

Unisystem is a natural for me to default to, as I have mastered its craft many years ago. I would love to get to that level with nWoD, but I have no interest in paying for the books I would need to really understand the game and its tweaks from under the hood. In short time, a cavalier, a soldier, and a hunter were all designed at a mid-power level tier.

The scenario involved the two party members traveling home after the War of the Cross. One was from Montaigne, the other Avalon. The rest of their traveling compatriots had gone their own ways by the time we joined the party. They stopped off in an Eisen village for the night. By the following morning they were involved with ghouls, mercenaries committing foul crimes, and a mayor’s wife being kept alive Elizabeth Bathory-style. Let us not forget, the laissez-faire Pierre the chef. Provider of fine wine and back door entrances to utilize en route to killing the mayor’s now-vampire wife.





System
Unisystem didn’t fail us and the players had fun. I would really like to try and run a 7th Sea game, some day. I played in a one-shot of Legends of the 5 Rings and it was as deadly as I desired. At that same time, I think long term games might churn through player characters, as played in the one-shot. There is talk of a new edition of 7th Sea. While Unisystem is not out of print, there is only a slow trickle of products
produced each year, including reprints. However, I think I have all I need with what is in print. I would just need to pull it from various books. 7th Sea is out of print, but L5R is not and has updated rules if I need references. However, 7th Sea is limited by what is available in terms of the world. The game’s setting is Euro-centric and has no magic system for voodoo that I have seen. The idea of a swashbuckling game without voodoo and Caribbean references is a bit bothersome to me. However, the game always struck me as more 3 Muskateers and not a Disney ride. Still, Caribbean, or if it is there in the Pirate Islands, I need to read up on it more.

Another alternate is Savage Worlds utilizing Solomon Kane and Pirates of the Spanish Main. Savage Worlds also has a plethora of products out there, much akin to Unisystem, and I can cobble together whatever would be needed.     


Still, I need to research more into 7th Sea and the available rules. I have played in a True 20 game of swashbuckling via Freeport. I would rather move on to something new. Perhaps there are items in Witchhunter I could use, as well?



Setting
This all started with my wife asking me to pick up Diablo 3. She wanted a game to play with me that was not a first person shooter. It was on sale, so we picked it up and started playing it that very day. Right away, the game reminded me of Ravenloft and my small amount of experience with that. It also came to remind me of the tone in Obsidian. There were angels and demon infestations, cities using portals for travel, and plenty of violence.

The more I thought on the idea of a 7th Sea game, the more I wandered towards influences from those other games. The Mists from Ravenloft may be why lone travelers use the gate/portals found in Diablo 3. The merchant’s guild hires soldiers and knights to guard the caravans from attacks. Perhaps the leaders of the caravans or the drivers of the wagons have a psychic ability that allows them to traverse the Mists, similar to the Vistani from Ravenloft. The fact these people exist and are in the employ of the merchants leads to the merchants gaining more and more power in the realm.

At the same time, dread powers are encroaching upon the land due to the War of the Cross results. Fields of slaughtered villagers side by side with burnt fields next to soldiers still clinging to their life as they lie dieing in the battlegrounds. Torment, strife, apathy, all these things to draw demon lords into the realm.

Maybe the 7th Sea metaplot can be worked in, maybe not. I am not overly familiar with it and what little I know does not impress me.




Real World versus Fantasy World
The next question becomes, does one use the real world for such a setting or does one use a fantasy world, such as Theah, or Ravenloft? In my mind, I want to utilize a fantasy world. While my players are not generally history majors and that would not preclude me from changing things up here and there, I prefer to step away from our world. In addition to that, Theah seems a bit more simpler than our world. Then again, it could be due to my unfamiliarity with it.

All of these thoughts lead to the following four paragraphs, which I quickly wrote out before falling asleep that night after running the game.


The War of the Cross has ended. Eisen is a disaster. The government is in shambles, the people are destitute, and the farms are barren. Other countries are entering Eisen to claim territory under the guise of protecting their own sovereignty. Powerful individuals and groups within Eisen are doing the same.

The amount of emotional torment has allowed demon lords to enter the real of Theah. They have begun land-grabs of their own in the battlefields from the war. The Church of the Prophets does not realize this is occurring. Instead, they are focused upon the end of the war and the beginning of the Inquisition. Meanwhile, monsters both human and inhuman have begun to roam the lands of Theah. The growing darkness goes unseen in most lands.

Local soldiers and citizens realize things are amiss, but remain uncertain of where to turn. The church is focused internally. Governments are mostly unstable or detrimental to their own people. The common man is powerless to influence either the religious or political rulers. In times such as these, it will take men and women of great virtue and conviction to bring light to the darkness.

The strengthening of the merchant class is occurring while all else appears bleak. Armed caravans cross the countryside to bring trade goods where they are needed and occasionally, desired. It is with one of these caravans that we find our cast of characters. . . 

Monday, June 16, 2014

Origins Game Fair thoughts



Origins Game Fair thoughts. . . Most of my comments are based on RPG products and nothing else. Very little else at this con interests me.


Origins is still is not what it once was. Once, it rivaled GenCon, but then GenCon exploded and moved dates. Origins imploded and suffered from the moved dates and internal politics of GAMA.

The dealer hall had fewer dealers than last year and I think the attendance count was up.

The dealer hall had very few third party retailers. The usual Steve Jackson Games/Atlas Games/All things Cthulhu booth and Troll and Toad were present. There were very few industry booths. It was nice to see our UK neighbors attending in the form of Pelgrane Press and Cubicle Seven. Also present were Growling Door Games, IPR, Studio 2 Publishing (who also had Mongoose Publishing items for Traveller), and Catalyst. There were no booths for WotC, Paizo, Eden Studios (who are busy putting together Adventure Maximus shipments), or PSI. I am sure I may have missed folks who were present.

I looked through the event book and did not find any games I was interested in playing. The number of LARPs offered was quite high, but I always thought there were a higher percentage of LARPs at Origins compared to GenCon.

An interesting item on site was the event book. The book consisted of events and maps of the halls – that’s it. There were no ads, no articles on things I could care less about, like blurbs on the special guests. I would prefer them to include a list of sponsors (maybe they were on the cover?), a list of guests (I’m sure they were listed as events, but not called out individually), and a list of dealers. By not listing the dealers in the book, I do not know who I may or may not have missed. Still, it was a book of stuff to experience and I was not forced to weed through articles and ad space versus events. The event book was printed on matte paper, not glossy magazine stock.

Jason Vey and I attended one of Ken Hite’s panels on introducing/using vampires in RPGs. We found Ken entertaining and he was not stumped by any of the attendees.

The North Market is still there and wonderful. We had breakfast and/or second breakfast there on Saturday and Sunday. I spent more money here than in the retailer hall. Of note, we spent money at Bubbles, The Barrel & Bottle, Taste of Belgium, and a few others I don’t recall names of and they aren’t listed on the website. The North Market is a wonderful thing to experience in downtown Columbus. This is a public market/farmer’s market.

Barley’s is slowly getting on board with Origins ala Scotty’s Brewhouse in Indianapolis. They offered a pint glass and a mug with their logo and the Origins logo on it. The 1000 pint glasses were gone by the time we showed up for dinner Friday night. Barley’s offered a convention menu and Jason Vey ordered from it. He liked what he ate, so they are doing something right.

I came home with a copy of Kuro, a birthday gift for my mother, and spices to try out in the kitchen (Peruvian paprika and black peppercorns smoked in Scotch). My wife, the closeted gamer that she is, came home with more product than I.

I would love to see more RPG publishers in attendance. This game fair is the child of GAMA, the Game Manufacturers Association. As such, there really should be more game publishers present. I know non-rpg manufacturers were present, but they were scaled back in presence. If GAMA continues as is, I do not think Origins will ever rival GenCon in the next 20 years. I think GAMA needs to devise a way to get more manufacturers involved, but I am no expert in how they can do so. One thought my travelling companions and I discussed was to offer single table booths to members of GAMA at no cost or at a greatly reduced price (say, $200). No tablecloth, no electricity, just pipe and drape behind the booth and an eight foot table. At this price, smaller publishers can afford to show up. They would only need to sell 5-8 core books to cover the cost of the booth. If they sell double that, they cover the cost of food. The manufacturer will need to work hard to cover the costs of hotel space and travel arrangements. However, if Origins is going to potentially take a loss on providing booths at this price, I think the manufacturers need to accept a potential loss in money due to those items in return for the exposure at such a low dollar amount for a booth.

I do not feel I got my monies worth for attending the event. I was determined to come home with product and I only picked up Kuro, because I hoped it would have great art which would look better in print, than in .pdf form. I have not read it, so I do not know if it does or does not. Outside of this book, there was nothing I wanted at the con. If I return next year, I am going to need something else to draw me in, whether it be more seminars or me running the games I want to play at cons (hello, Night’s Black Agents). By not telling me which dealers will be present, I feel like going for just the dealer hall is a shot in the dark. A shot in the dark involving hotel rooms, fuel for my car, fuel for me, boarding our dogs, and time which could be spent doing other, productive things. I would have been happy spending $50 on product.

Side Notes:
  • A special thanks to Hilton for an awesome upgrade to the executive level for our hotel room.
  • Origins, please make your website compatible with Chrome. It looks like the website was created in Microsoft’s FrontPage ten years ago and never updated. I could not access any of your downloads via Chrome. I had to open Internet Explorer, which I do not use outside of required work websites.
  • Gamers, in general, are still a rude lot of people. They leave behind their trash without properly disposing of it. They are inconsiderate to non-whites and non-males. This convention did nothing to dissuade that opinion. I doubt there is much Origins can do about it. We must become better at calling each other out on bad behaviors within our own social groups. 
  • Tuesday, April 8, 2014

    HtV: Montrose Safeguard of Chicago – A Security Company

    Montrose Safeguard of Chicago – A Security Company for Hunter the Vigil

    Montrose Safeguard started as a private investigation firm in 1975. The company was founded by David Hagger and Samuel Bond in the city of Schiller Park (near O'Hare). Over time, the company grew to include basic security guard details and then armed officers. When the supernatural became a full-on topic, company president Emily Watson used her contacts within City Hall to go after a contract with the city of Chicago.

    For their part, the city of Chicago tried to handle the accepted existence of vampires and shapechangers . To this day, the city still has no idea how to deal with the supernatural creatures. Should they be allowed to vote? What about marriage laws? Shapechangers appear to be human, but vampires are technically dead. Then comes the fact that vampires must consume blood. Does consuming blood from the living count as a criminal offense? Does it matter if the “victim” is willing or unwilling? Is killing or “dusting” a vampire the same as murder if the vampire is technically already dead? Shapechangers do not appear to have separate needs from humans regarding sustenance. However, their ability to control themselves is still vastly understood. Several cases are pending in the courts where the defendants claim to have not had control while in a changed form.

    Aldermen across the city brought the problem to City Hall just as quickly as the local newscasters took the challenges to the television and public at large. The tipping point for the mayor's office was a fight between a gang of vampires and a gang of werewolves. The fight broke out during the annual A Taste of Chicago event. The brawl claimed the lives of two vampires, one werewolf, and five citizens. It also caused a mini-riot shutting down the event for the rest of the week. At this point, the mayor was forced to take action. Enter Emily Watson and Montrose Safeguard.

    Emily Watson's parents are friends with the Chief of Police. Emily went to school the chief's son, even dating him their senior year of high school. While the chief's son would go on to study law at UCLA and then start his own practice in San Francisco, Emily joined the US Army and served as an intelligence adviser during the US's invasion of Panama. Emily moved back to the Chicago area once she mustered out from the Army and took a job with Montrose Safeguard. She started in management and worked her way up from there.

    Emily Watson made the right telephone call at the right time, lining up a meeting with both the Chief of Police and the mayor. Within a month's time, Montrose Safeguard became the city of Chicago's answer to the supernatural challenges. Soon after, Montrose Safeguard signed contracts with Cook, Lake, and DuPage Counties plus the State of Illinois for the northern portion of the state. A competitor based in Springfield is working the rest of the state. Montrose Safeguard has two teams of investigators dedicated to supernatural incidents fed to the company via local law enforcement agencies.

    Montrose Safeguard has developed several other agents who handle supernatural cases that come to the company via individuals. Most of these are related to “spooks,” ghosts, poltergeists, haunting, etc. At this time, Montrose Safeguard does not engage in the removal of incorporeal denizens.

    Montrose Safeguard of Chicago currently operates out of the city of Cicero near the intersection of Cermack (22nd Street) and Cicero (Ill Rte. 50). They have an office building and a fleet of cars.


    Game Play Notes:  Montrose Safeguard operates as a tier three organization in my game. The world’s citizens are just beginning to know vampires and werewolves. There are no catalogs of abilities. The company does not have tools or weapons designed to go after these new challenges. They have fewer than 20 security agents dealing with the supernatural case load. Outside of two teams of four, the agents deal with things individually, feeling their way through the cases. Once the organization can compile enough data to become a viable source of information or tools in dealing with supernatural events, the company will become a tier two organization.


    The setting has put vampires and werewolves in the public eye. However, mages, fae, ghosts, etc. really have not been accepted in public. They are potentially in the game world, just currently unknown.

    Thursday, March 6, 2014

    What I am reading, running, playing, planning, producing, and othercrazy ideas (updated as needed)

    What I should be doing
    Maps and layout for an adventure from Elf Lair Games
    Layout on a supplement for Elf Lair Games
    Writing up an one shot for Night's Black Agents
    Writing up 40 different appetizers for All Flesh Must Be Eaten and potentially Rotworld
    A second one shot for Night's Black Agents
    A Games Day event in the South Bend area

    What I’m reading

     

    What I'm reading next
    Whenever Craig Johnson wants to put out more Longmire books, I'm game. Until then...


     

    What I’m running



















    What I would like to run or play
    Investigation Special Unit #3 where law enforcement investigates the supernatural. It’s a home brew setting. One was set in Chicago, another in Miami. See WoD Y1 notes below in the Crazy Ideas section. 

    Also...





    What I’m playing


    Crazy ideas that might make good games

     with  

    Ashen Stars + Firefly where the players take on the role of Lazers trying to bring justice to the frontier. It turns the setting as is on its head. I know this. I have run 2 or 3 campaigns set in the ‘verse and can’t see doing it again without a major rewrite. I ran it straight and with a heavy Deadlands influence. Time for something different. Time for a Firefly product that actually combines sci-fi and western tropes. I have not seen Monica's book, hers may do just that. Then, there's...



    World of Darkness Year One:  The characters exist in a world where supernatural creatures are coming out in public. A “year one” story line, if you will. They would most likely portray law enforcement or a private security firm hired to deal with crimes committed by supernatural denizens. This is discussed in the Mirrors supplement, but I have my own take on it. I started discussing it here and here. I could do this via old WoD, new WoD, or Unisystem.


      
     

    Runaways + The Runaways + BubbleGUMSHOE
    or just Runaways + BubbleGUMSHOE using Mutant City Blues to supplement powers


    What's been completed
    What I am reading:  Streets of Bedlam, Deadlands Noir



    And here's Steve's list


    Thursday, February 27, 2014

    Kindred and Mages for a City

    In the 1990s and early 2000s I mostly GMed modern or near modern games set in the World of Darkness. For the longest campaign I ran, I pushed the setting out to the year 2013. Yes, that is last year, but at the time it was at least ten years in the future. The original notes I provided for South Bank cover the years 1992 through 2005. These pick up in 2013.


    The only notes I have in a format that are easy to put online is a list of people and places of interest. Most of the latter are bars the characters visited. The people portion includes Kindred and Mages. The players were all vampire and I treated Garou as per first edition rules. Garou are the enemy and will kill Kindred on site. I only brought them in to play for the Gangrel and as combat monsters in one or two situations. Still, I struck home the lethality of a Garou by severely jacking up characters with one Garou versus a Brujah, Gangrel, and Ventrue. I do not remember how much I involved Mages. The Technocracy crossed paths with the characters. I may have planned for more, due to the Nephandi involvement or I may be misremembering something.

    The game had three characters throughout the course of the three plus years I ran it. There was a fourth character for less than a year, when I had a roommate. They did not mix well with one of the regulars and it was abrasive. This was a building game and they wanted a more social game. Which, to their credit, was what they were accustomed to me running.

    The game started with the turning of the characters and expanded to the characters being part of the Prince’s security teams. They would go on to fight one of my two Greatest Big Bad badass groups, one become True Brujah, one become part Immortal ala Highlander, one became an anti-tribu, and they all faced devils and angels as the world burned in an apocalypse. It was a grand game.

    The tabs in the Clans section are meant to represent who sired whom. “(d)” represents deceased characters.

    Thus, I present to you a listing of Kindred and Mages who populated a major city in my games set in South Bank. Some of the names are taken from White Wolf products, others are mine. It has been so long since I ran this game that I vaguely remember which are which.




    Camarilla Clans
    Brujah
    Chris Anderson:  Primogen, 7th Generation, biker style, owns a motor-cross park
                    Razor:  Member of the Primogen’s primary security team, male, Nazi symbols on leather jacket
                                    Robert Brown (d)
                                                    Nigel Preseton (d)
                    Laurie Parker:  owns several grunge bars/clubs
                                    Buzz:  club DJ
                                                    Peter:  Anarch
                                                    Ed:  Anarch
                                                                    Beth:  Anarch
                                                                                    Carmen:  Anarch
                    Curtis Smith:  Handles gang activity
                                    David Chang:  Contact with the Tongs
                    Randy:  Contact with non-Garou shapeshifters
    (Ryan Johnson:  7th Generation)
                    Bruce Warschilkshy:  Handles the Unions
                    Tony Volczek:  Trade Industry
                                    Cole Swanson: Minor Trade Industry
                                    Cliff Castle:  Major Trade Industry
    Bridge Hellstrom (d):  Idealist, considered rogue by most of South Bank’s Camarilla Kindred

    Gangrel
    Karen Spieletreff:  Primogen, 7th Generation
                    Wade Sheats:  South Bank representative to other cities
                                    Kathleen Moore (d)
                    Jacob Sumpter:  South Bank representative to the local Garou
                                    Len Higgens:  Rep from Elkhart
                    Donald Durango:  Member of the primary security team for the Primogen
                                    Agnes Gallows:  Member of the second security team
                                                    Luis:  Anarch
                                                                    Stephanie:  Luis
    George Kruegar:  Handles local wildlife organizations (parks, zoos, etc.), Sabbat mole with Vicissitude abilities
                    Kathryn:  Member of the third security team, has Vicissitude
                    Andrea Newman:  Controls local game preserves not already under the control of the Garou
    Adrian “Ivan” Petru:  Member of the third security team, drank and Immortal and gained a
    Generation

    Malkavian
    Samuel Tippicanoe: Primogen, often found singing and playing the piano at Singalong Sam’s
                    Sandy Bouchard:  Oversees County/State jails
                                    Brian James:  Eccentric millionaire, plays the “Puritan”
                    Jaques St. Clair:  Oversees the South Bank Institute for the Mentally Challenged
                                    Randy Bloom:  Head of South Bank’s chapters of MUFON and NICAP
                                    Maye (d):  Operated from within Chinatown, actually a Nosferatu
                    Morgan Tyler:  Member of security team three

    Nosferatu
    Simon Cielewski (d):  Primogen
                    Patti Rieser (d)
                    Isabella (d)
                                    Ana (d)
                    Timmy Smith:  Controls smaller, local colleges
                                    Nicholas Voinea:  Security team two’s spymaster
    (Khalid)
                    Mona Swanson:  Security team one member; Arabian in origin

    Toreador
    Malinda Fuyakara:  Primogen, owns Club Zombie, dark appearance
                    Billy Haynes:  Writer
                    Kone-ko:  Runs brothels and underground casinos
                                    Miles Rolstein:  Handles work for Kone-ko

    Stacey Veidt:  Owner of Club Death, dark red hair, blue eyes, dresses very clean and modern
    Kristina Kandler:  Owns several nightclubs, same sire as Stacey Veidt
                    Evelyn Motz:  South Bank representative to Indianapolis
                                    Henry Masterson:  Security team two member, involved with local kine politics
    Colin Hutchinson:  Owns local theatre for the performing arts, same sire as Stacey Veidt
                    Aryn Marca:  Poseur painter
                    Theresa Charbonneau:  Owns a local auditorium
                                    Melissa LeRousch:  pianists
    Nick Meltzer:  Painter, representative from Indianapolis
    Kim Drieburg:  Cellist, representative from Chicago
    Robert Davis:  Jazz musician, owns three local clubs

    Tremere
    Louisa Markoffe:  Primogen and Chantry leader
                    Jasmine Parks:  Louisa’s lover and constant companion
                    Paul Roesier:  Louisa’s enforcer and when doesn’t use Aluta
                    Darius Van Hoeven:  Owner of Bethlehem Theological School of South Bank
                                    Nikolai Werschaft:  Owner of various occult stores
                                                    Lester Summers:  Occult researcher
    Wade Deka:  Spy
                    Adele Panzera (d):  Acolyte

    Ventrue
    Ian Stewart:  Prince of South Bank (future)
                    Griffith Wyman:  Handles local paper media and sports teams
                    Laura Styles:  Controls police and fire departments
                    Chuck MacGregor:  Oversees the gang activities not controlled by the Brujah; black hair and eyes, hangs out at
    Tommy Sheehan’s Pub and Grill
    Eric Morcock:  Manages security teams two and three
                    Frank Drascovic (d):  Computer systems
    Jordan Studebaker (d):  6th Generation, assassinated in 2010 by an unknown Kindred (Aluta)
                    Terrence Friedman:  Primogen, owns some Major Trade Industry and some local media, owns The Delta Night
    and does not truly like the Prince
    Tara Cho:  Representative to Chicago
    Sandra Colwynne:  Representative to Indianapolis
                    Igor Koziol:  Handles government offices involved with business and health
    Louis Toscani:  Mafia relations
                    Sabrina Giovanelli:  Drug and gun sales
                    Antonio Perrelli:  Member of security team three
    Byron Chapman:  Representative from Indianapolis
    Paul Caldone:  Representative from Chicago



    Neutral Clans
    Assamite
    Deborah al-Muthlim Sedonia:  Chief of all South Bank security and personal bodyguard to Prince Stewart. Prince Stewar contracted the Assamite family in 2018. The most recent time a family member visited South Bank before Deborah was in 2010 to reassure the Kindred that assassination attempts on Prince Studebaker’s life was not an Assamite contract. Deborah’s contract is for five years. She typically dresses in black, skin tight clothing with no jewelry. However, she will dress up to match her Prince for social occasssions.

    Daughters of Cacophony
    Caitlen Eire:  Owner of Tombo’s, lead singer for Irish Mist, given the right to sire due to her participation in the Sabbat war of 1997
                    Iva Walker:  Lead guitarist for Irish Mist, short and skinny, borne in 1997

    Gargoyle
    Aluta:  Serves the Tremere and blood-bound to Louisa. She killed Jordan Studebaker after Louisa decided she had had enough of his actions against her clan. Aluta has heard of the gargoyle named Angel, but they have yet to meet. Aluta plans on playing with Angel as prey and then killing Angel. She feels Angels ways of pacifism are a disgrace to the Gargoyle heritage.

    Angel:  Lives in the basement of a local university, does not serve the Tremere, and is not aware of another Gargoyle being in town

    Giovanni
    Leo:  South Bank media liason specialist on the occult, owns a very pricey, used bookstore that is only open by appointment. Leo is also involved with the city’s cemeteries, several funeral homes, and controls the city morgue. To this extent, he has made himself invaluable to Prince Stewart.

    Orazio Lamberti:  Not Kindred, but rather Leo’s ghoul manservant. He is hunchbacked and uses a cane.

    Ravnos
    Jan Yuri:  7th Generation, controls various breaking and entering rackets, casinos, movie theaters, pawn shops, extortionist rings, and Zekes

    Sandy Yuri:  Niece-Daughter of Jan, can be found at Zeke’s, a rough and tumble biker bar

    Samedi
    Roger

    Steven Cartwright:  Servant of the Giovanni Death Club

    Bushi
    Suguru Fukuda

    Cruaigh
    Liam O’Connell:  He once lived in this area, but has since moved away. He is rumoured to live somewhere in Michigan, but with an eye on the local activities. He still owns an old boathouse in Lincoln. The property is five acres of forest on a lake surrounded by an electrified fence.

    Alasdair Ferguson

    Caitiff
    Markus Kuchenmeister (d):  Brujah
    Christos (d):  Gangrel
    Katja (d):  Brujah
    Polly (d):  Toreador
    Setsu-Otsuki (d):  Nosferatu
    Barry Hooper:  Runs the docks, takes payments from various gun dealers and allows them to work out of his place
    Mark Roseta:  Leader of security team two, an outsider even to his security team



    Sabbat Clans
    Kiasyd
    Mary Tarbert:  Member of the Giovanni Death Club

    Pander
    Hawk:  Owner of Nighthawk’s Flight Service. He will take jobs from either Camarilla or Sabbat Kindred. He is a member of the True Black Hand and knows the location of the Blood Brothers who are in torpor. He is unaware of the Nagarajas’ presence in South Bank.

    Nagaraja
    Angelo Schatten:  Member of the Giovanni Death Club and True Black Hand, is considered rogue.

    Thomas Smythe

    Lasombra
    Marcel Lisboa

    Tzimisce
    None

    Antitribu Clans
    Brujah

    Gangrel
    Henrik Hovgaard

    Nosferatu
    Jean Dermond O’Callahan: Killed Victor Fleming in Kokomo Station, goes by “JD”

    Toreador
    Malcom Morgan

    Audry Graham

    Ventrue
    Meral Halid:  Works in the Archbishop’s office

    Other Sabbat
    Paul Dalsgaard:  Friend of Forcas, owns Dr. Damdhi’s Waxworks where he has Robert Brown and Kathleen Moore on exhibit as “Tragic Neo-Gothic Vampyre Lovers.” The Waxworks has been closed since 2003. There is a secret, underground hallway from the basement of the waxworks to an exit under the South Bank Mariner’s (baseball) pitcher’s mound.

    Jeret Brandt:  Internet alias of “Crater-Man,” wants Pirrelli to be his mole within the Camarilla




    Tradition Mages
    Akashik Brotherhood
    Miss Wu:  Elder, friends with Su (kitsune). Ms Wu owns several dojos in the area, most specialize in exercise and self-defense. She is a women’s rights proponent.

    Brian Chang:  Contemplative Warrior

    David Li:  Yogi, herbalist, runs an Oriental market

    Celestial Chorus
    Sister Isabella:  Elder, resides at the Catholic university
    Brother David:  Elder, theological professor at the Catholic university
    Sister Jasmine:  Social worker based out of a junior college associated with the Catholic university
    Sister Diane:  Runs the local homeless shelter, often seen working in the soup kitchen
    Sister Michelle:  Hunts down evil, is not a member of the Society of Leopold

    Cult of Ecstasy
    Pat Mansfield:  Medievalist
    Garland Navarro:  Deadhead
    Elena Wells:  Club owner
    Debbie Shelton:  Owns casinos, hotels, and brothels
    Camile Duvalle:  Owner of Fantasy, Unlimited

    Dreamspeakers
    Jimmy “Red Bird” Smith:  Elder, very old and close to death, friend of the Garou
    Alicia White:  Student of Red Bird’s, will most likely be asked to be the representative to the Garou upon his death
    Jesse Coleman:  Student of Red Bird’s, works for the DNR, can sometimes be found at the local State Park
    Lisa Wittman:  Ecologist

    Euthanatos
    Keith Jones:  Low to mid-grade power level, from Chicago
    Darren McCloud:  Low to mid-grade power level, from Indianapolis
    Sadik Kadish:  Member of the Giovanni Death Club, not a known Mage of South Bank

    Order of Hermes
    Johnathon Carmine:  Elder, alchemist, thinks he is the most powerful Mage in the city, no one has ever tried to dis/prove this; House Bonsigus

    Stacey Wilson:  Alchemist; House Quesitor

    Hector Ramierz:  Professor of history and linquistics at the local Catholic university and related colleges; House Jerbiton

    Sonya Meyer:  Astrologist, odd tattoos on body and face; House Criamon

    Richard Ferber:  Professor of philosophy at the local state college; House Ex-Miscellanea

    Sons of Ether
    Thomas “Zip Gun” Choppe:  Elder, head of physics department at the local Catholic University

    Kent Dixon:  Visiting biochemist from a Big Ten university, teaching at the local state college

    Christopher Wagner:  Gadgeteer

    Verbena
    Derek Stellner:  Elder
    Aileen Thomas:  White witch, streak of white in her hair, former student of Stellner’s
    Kathleen Greenburg:  Black witch, former student of Stellner’s
    Aron Kelly:  student of Aileen’s

    Virtual Adepts
    Blake Wilder:  Elder, owns several computer firms, has ties to big money in the computer industry
    Stephen Rurk:  Elder, owns several programming companies, known ofr his hacking abilities
    Kathy Billingsly
    Larry Schively:  Operations manager of local Tellus Enterprises, he does not realize what he is involved with

    Hollow Ones and Orphans
    Jules Fiorbjorn:  Elder
    Amy Syrus
    Marlene Jackson
    Gabriel Ashcraft
    Natasha Stark
    Michael Tomlin
    William Fischer
    Kelly Burns:  Member of the Giovanni Death Club
    Kimberly Allsop:  Member of the Giovanni Death Club

    Ali-Batan
    None



    Technocracy
    New World Order
    Armin Khrolovich:  Reporter for national news agency

    Iteration X

    Syndicate
    Has control of local news media and major religious charitable giving organization

    Progenitors
    James Wong:  Gene-engineer, has access to MIB and HIT Marks, teaches at both the local state college and Catholic university, he continues to work on his experiments with Garou DNA. He has been working on this project for more than twenty years and has come a long way. He has been cloned for the greater good of the Technocracy. He once knew the whereabouts of the Renegade pack. He had hoped to bring them into his scheme, but was unsuccessful.

    Void Engineers



    Marauders
    Francisco:  Frank’s wife was a Daughter (Son) of Ether. One night, a raging Garou lost cub attacked their home. Everyone in the family, besides Frank, were killed. Frank was left barely alive. At the point where the Delirium should have kicked in, Frank’s unAwakened Avatar awoke. The experience drove him insane. He learned his Spheres quickly, yet was completely unrefined in his learning. He found one of his wife’s diaries from the first days of her tutelage and studied it. He was able to discern how to find other Awakened individuals, whatever the race. He also found a Talisman of his wife’s, a Peacemaker .45 revolver. He has since embarked on a mission to rid the world of the supernatural, especially Mages. He knows of many in the South Bank area. He blames the other Mages and Garou, in general, for his wife’s death. He considers Kindred a plague to society.




    Nephandi
    Set of Seven
    Ramiel:  Real name is unknown, but he is widely accepted as being Derek Stellner’s first student, who was lost to the Nephandi. He is an Order of Hermes-barabbi. He never had the time to develop into a certain House. He has completely black eyes.

    Samiel:  Real name is Kevin Anders. He made a Pact with the Dark Ones to fix his blindness and paraplegic body. All that he must accomplish for the Dark Ones is the destruction of the Celestial Chorus and Dreamspeaker Mages of the South Bank Area. He serves as the public front-man for the Set of Seven. He is a Celestial Chorus-barabbi. He has completely white eyes.

    Sameveel:  Real name is Ian Jamison. He serves as Ramiel’s advisor. He has a secret agenda. He has plans to bring forth the King in Yellow, an avatar of Hastur. He is an Euthanatos-barabbi. He has completely navy-blue eyes.

    Caim:  Her real name is Tina Olson. She is a New World Order-barabbi. She has completely orange eyes.

    Tumiel:  Her real name is Sabrina Elliot. She is a Verbena-barabbi. She has completely red eyes.

    Forcas:  Her real name is Renee’ Kasmeerzak. She is a Dreamspeaker-barabbi. Her eyes are completely purple.

    Marax:  His real name is Nicholas Wilson. He is a Void Engineer-barabbi. He has completely green eyes.

    The Set of seven were the Big Bads for this campaign. They were introduced within the first five sessions and stayed until the party was able to kill them. I first described them in ways that were otherworldly and demonic. I did this, because I was not certain what they would become. In time, the abilities I wanted them to display were very much in line with Mage. Thus, they became barabbi.

    Marax was killed and his soul is nowhere to be found. Ramiel is lost in Malfeas or another Nether realm. The others’ souls were placed in a glass ball. Tumiel was removed and chained to Stellner’s Umbral Realm with Stygian Metal. The others were dropped into the Set of Seven’s well of souls, which was then Hermetically sealed against man, beast, and time by Stellner.

    When I think of organizations within roleplaying games that really made a game happen, this is one of my top two. The other was the “Circle of Thorns” from my WEG Star Wars game. I tend to revisit both organizations as nemesis in my games.



    Places of Interest
    A Taste:  Coffee house with low lights, wide spread tables, long bar, and a small stage; owned by Colin Hutchinson

    Club Death:  Industrial dance club, sight of the 1996 slaughter; owned by Stacey Veidt

    Club Zombie:  Loud metal, industrial, techno mix, doorman dresses as Mr. Samdhi, coffins and skeletons are everywhere; owned by Malinda (DeWinter) Fuyukara

    Crossroads:  Mage-related bar, run by Zero, a former Consor

    The Delta Night:  Luxurious nightclub on the upper floor of a downtown business, black tie, and name must be listed to gain entrance; owned by Terrence Friedman

    The Dock:  A quiet biker bar where many weapons deals are made

    Drumhoelfers:  Cheap, 1980s styled bar with pool tables

    564 Club:  Traditional jazz and blues club, very pristine condition, suite and tie dress attire; serves “house wine” to Kindred

    Fantasy Unlimited:  Strip bar in an old church; owned by Camile Duvalle

    The Hole:  Trashy S&M club in the arts district

    Hurricane:  Top 40s dance club

    The Locker Room:  Huge sports bar, the building is three stories tall with at least one bar open on each level at all times, every booth or table has TV screens with large-screen TVs on all the walls; run by the Syndicate

    The Lamp Lite:  Brothel in the casino district; run by Kone-ko

    Luna’s:  Garou pub

    Singalong Sam’s:  Piano bar with very bad singing by Sam the Man aka Samuel Tippicanoe

    The Sunset Club:  A cheap venue for rock style bands, once a county clubhouse where the clubhouse, golf course, bar, and surrounding housing subdivision went downhill. 11550 South Crawford Avenue, the sign is half0lit with neon red lettering, the parking lot is filled with litter, cracks, and weeds. The exterior of the building is drab and gloomy, done in brick and stone. It is run by the Union Council, a South Bank Camarilla watchdog group

    Tombo’s:  Rock style bar that plays music from the 1960s-1980s. They feature live music most nights. This bar was known as The Prancing Unicorn in the 1990s. Owned by Caitlen Eire.

    Toucan Liquor Stand:  Tropical themed bar whose owner is a very gay Satyr