Sunday, November 4, 2012

An American Night's Black Agents

Miami - NYC - Boston
Chicago - Memphis - New Orleans
Seattle - San Francisco - San Diego
LA - Chicago - NYC
Toronto - Las Vegas - Mexico City

More later, if the Renfields don't get me first.


Lowell Francis said...

I've been thinking about that- the American version's immediately appealing, but at the same time I think there's a lot the GM puts aside by not going the international route. certainly Bourne, Alias & Bond revel in that. I like the sense of the players being forced into strange and hostile territory- and having to navigate those foreign waters. You'd also have to consider how "heat" gets handled differently. What are your thoughts about the advantages/costs for taking the American approach to NBA?

Derek Stoelting said...

I don't have any immediate thoughts on rules for NBA: Codename 'merica!

As to the setting, a few quick thoughts. First, if the idea to remove familiarity of the players, that is easily accomplished. Change the big cities known by the players to citiesw unknown or little cities. Denver, Barrow, increases the possibilities. It doesn't really matter if the city is big or small, as long as the party is filled with burned spies with no means of doing a lot of travel without a large effort.

Another thought is that the tone and style should change from what is presented in NBA. What if the evil is not an ancient and lurking one, but rather something new and fresh? Have you read John Steakley's Vampire$? Or perhaps read any of Steve Nile's 30 Days of Night? (Not that horrible movie)

What if the evil is in control, ala Vampire: the Masquerade and the humans they control are willingly on the take? They want to be the future and the future is slick leather, cool facial tattoos, and techno music.

Either way you cut it, I think you have to go high octane action with the 'merican version. The smooth operators in Ronin have no place in this version of the game. You need guys like the Expendables with big fucking guns and bigger egos.

You can still use a cast of foreign agents to up the amount of unfamiliarity of with the territory. You see that with Burn Notice. The lead male has not idea what is really available in Miami. He counters that with local help. Not quite the same, but it's the quickest example I can pull from at the moment. Perhaps, Criminal Minds is a better example. They travel to different places across the country, places they are not readily familiar with, and then begin their investigations - learning along the way.

I still think, that as written, NBA works best as written. Changing it to an USA based game completely changes the set up.

Derek Stoelting said...

I read through the heat section last night. I don't think you really need to change it up, too much. You may need to lower the difficulty level for one or two, but overall, it should work as written.

I think moving it to the U.S. soil does add one thing, the vampires can now go after any U.S. agents family, as soon as, they know who the agents really are. Sure, social security numbers are destroyed and birth records covered up, but eventually there will be a way to track down famnily.

You can do that with games set in Europe, as well. European agents aren't far from home. It's more direct for them. However, if the vampires find out about U.S., Canadia, or any other 'merican agent, they could send people to the western hemisphere to track down relatives. I think the agents are more removed from the threat, if they are in the European theatre and from the West. I think that makes the threat less of a threat.


Derek Stoelting said...

An interesting post on (shudder)