Monday, 4 March 2013

Maid: The Dungeon of Silver and Gold

+Annette and I are between Acts in our Blood Hunter campaign, so we decided to mix things up a little and have a light-hearted interlude by playing a totally random Maid one-shot! We rolled up a random Maid, Master and Mansion last week, and sat down together to play on Saturday 2 March.

Annette created Zariah, a Cool Heroine Maid. She's a magical-girl android with cat-ears and a tail. Her Stress Explosion is shopping, and her reason for becoming a Maid stems from debts... Somehow we figured the two were related. She has a 1 in Athletics, Affection and Skill, but her strengths are Cunning 3, Luck 2, and Will 3. She has a rifle built into one arm, and she has the will to stand even when defeated in battle.

The Mansion was the world's most tastelessly gaudy fantasy dungeon, with a gold and silver colour scheme. I decided that the Mansion was the bottom level of the dungeon; basically, a vast treasure room using the loot from slain adventurers to line the very walls. All of this metal in one place meant that it was shielded from electronic or magical transmissions. A portrait of the Master also hung in the entry hall.

The Master was Geeves, the former henchman of an adventuring party, who was the sole survivor of a raid on the dungeon. The previous Master, a vampire, had cursed Geeves with vampirism and fled, leaving him to run the place. It was at this point that Zariah appeared from her magical dimension to serve him! Luckily, her robotic nature meant the Master was not able to use her as a source of blood! Geeves had inherited great magical powers, and was already a talented painter.

Zariah started the day well, rousing the Master as night fell and serving him a goblet of blood. She asked if he required help with dressing, which made him blush until she pointed out she was a robot, a golem-like creature. Unfortunately her poor Skill meant she botched the job, and he ended up wearing several items incorrectly, inside out or back to front - most notably, he had a pair of pants on his head like a floppy jester's cap. He didn't seem too bothered though.

Master Geeves is still a bit confused about his newfound state of being, and requested she cook him a full breakfast to be served in the dining hall. 

As she was making breakfast, a wounded demon pushed open the door and staggered inside, asking for help. Apparently there was a war going on between the forces of heaven and hell! Zariah called for the Master to come; thanks to her Will, he answered her summons even though it's not her place to boss him around. Geeves told her to see if she could aid the demon once breakfast was served, as he might be a useful addition to the lower levels of the dungeon. 

Thanks to her abysmal cooking skills, the breakfast was an inedible extravaganza. The Master decided he wasn't so hungry after all, and just asked for another cup of blood.

Zariah showed her cool side by instructing the demon (who had almost bled out by this stage) to follow her while bleeding into a bowl - partly so he wouldn't make more of a mess on the floor, and partly to collect more blood for the Master since supplies were starting to run low!

Her skill at medicine was fully the equal of her skill in the kitchen, and the demon died on the operating table. At that point, a lost angel knocked on the door, having wandered into the dungeon accidentally while looking for the demon she'd been fighting. Discovering he was now dead, she shouldered her massive sword and left, leaving Zariah to dispose of the body.

Zariah took the body outside and dug two graves, decapitating the demon with her shovel and burying his head and body separately to make sure he wouldn't come back from the dead. The shovel glowed with a white energy, which suffused into her body and increased her Skill!

The Master had been spending the evening working on a painting of the wall in his studio. Zariah served up a goblet of black demon blood, and Master Geeves began to glow with a dark aura... Then the whole room, except for the painting, seemed to shimmer and warp, reminding Zariah of her entry into this world. Everything settled down, but the Master felt a little faint, and Zariah escorted him back to his coffin for a bit of a lie-down. She then heard a strange roaring rumble through the wall, and went to investigate.

A door leading off the art studio now opened onto the bustling platform of Akihabara Subway Station! Zariah questioned a station attendant, then headed back inside to consult with the Master. Geeves suggested she check upstairs and see how the rest of the Dungeon was doing. Level 5 (the Level just above the Mansion) was still there, filled with a range of very nasty monsters and traps. She spoke to a troll, who told her that Level 5 was still OK, but access to Level 4 was cut off by a featureless grey stone ceiling capping the stairwell.

Zariah used her Magical Girl powers to teleport to Level 4, but instead ended up above the streets of Akihabara, surrounded by cars and towering skyscrapers! As she gazed in amazement at the changed landscape, she saw a passenger plane lose power and begin to dive towards the street - and the Mansion underneath! With Magical Girl power and a great force of will, she summoned a giant bouncy castle in the street! The plane hit it and bounced back into the sky, wobbling and recovering before continuing its flight. After this public miracle, Zariah simply teleported back to the Dungeon to attend to her other duties.

At this point I rolled another random Contemporary Event, and got another plane crash! I decided to veto that, and another result I couldn't work in very easily, leaving us with one final problem...

The next day while cleaning, Zariah encountered a young, overweight, stubbly guy with glasses who had entered the hall from the art studio. He claimed to be the President of her Fan Club, and begged her to accept his feelings! She was uncertain what to do about him, questioning him about the fan club... In the end, she said he could visit again if he'd bring her a pint of his own blood every day so she could keep the Master fed!

The otaku gladly accepted her terms, although I get the feeling that he'd turn up each day in slightly worse condition until he fainted... Lucky for him, we decided to end the session there!

This was a fun, light-hearted game that took a couple of hours (one we'd created Maid/Master/Mansion). I think this is about my limit for random-event fuelled games, as they start to feel a little stretched after a while. Short and punchy is good, and it's nice if you can arrive at some vague sort of conclusion.

We did end up with a vampire in our game again, but got to have a bit of fun with it instead of dealing with vengeance-fuelled angst as in Blood Hunter.

I'm hoping that soon Annette will get the chance to roleplay in a game with another player or two, since so far she's only tried a couple of one-on-one games with me.

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