Werewolf the Forsaken Ep 14: Generational Differences Pt 2

Railing against the strange and savage rules of their newly uncovered society, Crescent Head teens Alex, Ava and Sleeves search for a solution to intrusions of the Rat King. As they do so, they bring themselves to face both their elders’ monstrosity and the human hopes and fears that hide behind it.

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Werewolf the Forsaken 2nd Edition is a product of Onyx Path Publishing, under license from White Wolf Games.

Wolfprint

Pic is human-not-kind by Dimitri dF on Flickr, CC A/N$/ND

Happy New Year!

And a grand Festivus to you all from the team here at Liberation Industries.

Got a couple of little bits of news for you now that dread 2017 (which crazy cult was it that predicted the end times for this year?) has finally borne down upon us. The first is, as prophesied, our early Apocalypse World sessions are due to be stricken from the internet due to our inconsistent approach to web hosting and inability to pay more than the bare minimum. Shouldn’t happen with anything we deployed after that, but if you want ’em, now is the time to grab ’em.

The second piece of news is that this darling New Year weather has not killed us yet, so we’ll be coming at you with Werewolf over the next few weeks with a spooky as can be return to the Devil John Moulton after that.

And as a New Year gift Dandy, who plays Sleeves in our Crescent Coast Werewolf game, has drawn these super cute chibis of Alex, Ava and Sleeves, the three teenage lycanthropes currently terrorizing the northern New South Wales coastline. So enjoy.

chibiiiiiissssss

 

Werewolf the Forsaken Ep 13: Generational Differences Pt 1

After a brief interlude (caused to some extent by a recording failure at Liberation Industries HQ) Crescent Head teenagers Alex, Ava and Sleeves spend this episode grilling their elders for info, and being roundly disappointed by the answers that adult life provides…

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Werewolf the Forsaken 2nd Edition is a product of Onyx Path Publishing, under license from White Wolf Games.

Wolfprint

Pic is human-not-kind by Dimitri dF on Flickr, CC A/N$/ND

Fiasco Ep 4: Ice with a Y Part 2

Our Christmas special rockets towards its gory conclusion as labyrinthine CIA plots crash headlong into Transnistria’s alarmingly well funded Antarctic Intelligence Service. Who will live to Explore the Secret Oilfields? And who will die on… the Ice!

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Fiasco is an excellent little storygame created by Jason Morningstar and brought to us by Bully Pulpit Games. Give ’em some love.

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Pic is McMurdo Station, Antarctica by eutrophication&hypoxia on Flickr, CC A

Fiasco Ep 3: Ice with a Y Pt 1

We wish you happy holidays as the Liberation Industries team returns to Fiasco, and with all the snowy thoughts floating around at this time of year, The Ice seemed like the perfect playset to use!

Join Nik and Boris (diplomatic liaisons), Bryan with a Y and Bernice (happily married) and Nancy (definitely not CIA) as they unravel a twisted conspiracy formed around the usually pretty uneventful McMurdo Sound Research Base…

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Fiasco is an excellent little storygame created by Jason Morningstar and brought to us by Bully Pulpit Games. Give ’em some love.

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Pic is McMurdo Station, Antarctica by eutrophication&hypoxia on flickr,  CC A

Werewolf the Forsaken Ep 12: Matchmakers Pt 2

Teenage Crescent Head werewolves Alex, Ava and Sleeves get a crash course in battling their ancestral enemies, the Beshilu Rat Hosts, which leaves them woefully ill equipped to deal with the nefarious plans of Ava’s mother, and the strange madness their new forms seem to spread…

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Werewolf the Forsaken 2nd Edition is a product of Onyx Path Publishing, under license from White Wolf Games.

Wolfprint

Pic is human-not-kind by Dimiti dF on Flickr, CC A/N$/ND

Werewolf the Forsaken Ep 11: Matchmakers Pt 1

After our… actually multiple month long horror interlude, it is time for Liberation Industries to return to Crescent Head for even more horror!

Having survived their first run-in with a member of the Pure Tribes, Crescent Head teens Alex, Ava and Sleeves get back to what’s really important; prep for the end of year ball! Unfortunately, they’re not the only one’s with agendas…

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Werewolf the Forsaken 2nd Edition is a product of Onyx Path Publishing, under license from White Wolf Games.

Wolfprint

Pic is human-not-kind by Dimitri dF on Flickr, CC A/N$/ND

Fiasco Ep 2: The Pit Pt 2

Special guests Tim and Mel join Liberation Industries for our first Halloween Special!

As the hull falls apart, the Saddleback is boarded by hostile forces, and the Box gives more of its ominous gifts, everything seems lost for the crew and civilians at the bottom of the North Sea. So… why does all this feel like it is going to plan?

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For this Fiasco game we used the Objective Zebra playbook, available from the Bully Pulpit Games website. Fiasco is an old favourite for the Liberation Industries crew, and as Lovecraft enthusiasts the nods to The Temple in this playset made us very happy.

Additional soundeffects by freesfx.co.uk, who also provide out theme music, tgamel’s Analogue Boys. Check ’em out!

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Pic is Submarine Moon by Eric Lewis on Flickr, CC A/SA

Fiasco Ep 1: The Pit Pt 1

Special guests Tim and Mel join Liberation Industries for our first Halloween Special!

Deep in the muck at the bottom of the North Sea, the crew and civilians aboard the USS Saddleback wait grimly for death; whether at the hands of the Nazis, starvation or the final failure of the hull. What they don’t realise is that death may already be aboard…

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For this Fiasco game we used the Objective Zebra playbook, available from the Bully Pulpit Games website. Fiasco is an old favourite for the Liberation Industries crew, and as Lovecraft enthusiasts the nods to The Temple in this playset made us very happy.

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Pic is Submarine Moon by Eric Lewis on Flickr, CC A/SA

The Devil’s Own Self: Devil John Retrospective

Well, for those of you who listened to our Devil John Sessions, you’ll recognise that we all had a pretty good time.

Some of that was the rum. Some, but not all of it. It was very nice rum though.

In the interest of seeing this cool little game get a bit more polish as it develops further, we at Liberation Industries figured we’d jot down a few of our thoughts regarding how it played.

As possible points of interest, we didn’t have the official character sheets, and had to jerry rig some which in retrospect made the game very slightly more lethal. Which in a one shot session was ok, but it did skew the game slightly.

The other thing was that I had played copious amounts of Hard West before GMing this session, and it was a pretty serious influence. In case it wasn’t absolutely clear, by knowledge of Catholicism, indigenous myth, demonology, and ritual magic radically outstrips my knowledge of United States history, which probably coloured this session and later ones a bit.

Anyway, I’ll break this down into rough pros and cons.

Stuff We Liked

Character Creation Cards

These were a real winner. I loved that in a western themed game your character creation is a card based mini-game, which felt very evocative. The passing of cards between the players also made a nice prelude to the themes of guilt and devil’s bargains that the game features so heavily, with each player trying to second guess what shade of poison their compatriots would send them. The last card was almost inevitably terrifying.

It is a quick way to create characters with interesting and very troubled pasts, and means that both players and GM are given an avenue to create anti-heroes without chickening out with their prior acts of evil. You can take this to redemption or damnation with equal ease in play, which I think is great.

In future, I think it would be great if the deck could be expanded with more options; like a lot of what we found, it was a good number for a one off session, but trying to add new characters in later sessions led to a lot of repetition.

Demonic Pacts

Its simple, its elegant, and it works perfectly. The fact that your pact will always work gets people thinking more creatively, trying to bring their horrifying powers to bear in a manner that actually helps makes for interesting situations.

Then there’s the repayment. As a GM I love any element that incentivises the players acting to promote chaos and something other than their own best interests, and really keeps the game full of surprises.

Of anything, I hope this element is the one that doesn’t change.

Stuff We’re Not So Sure On

The Dice

In honesty, I don’t think we minded the combination of dice as a combination of your skills and a death-clock. It did feel a little clumsy at times, but on a later playthrough we found that the system became much easier to follow once we had the official character sheets.

The roll low element was a bit strange, with the pasts that cemented a characters competence making the rolls higher on average. This was sort of played off by the fact that a higher dice allowed more use of the “re-roll until you make it” system, but it still felt a little counter-intuitive at times.

In contrast to the very collaborative, rules light “indie” elements of town creation, character creation and demonic pacts, the dice system feels almost out of place, though I struggle to think of an alternative that would be appropriate. Perhaps a bidding system like Insylum or Undying, with characters receiving different coloured poker chips based on the four stats, which would be in line with the games other tactile elements.

As I said, not a bad element for a game by any means, but it may be worth shaking things up a little.

The Hunt

The extended hunt for the Immortal Bastard is a handy framing construct, with the collaborative element once again allowing players to shape their story as well as the identity and motives of the main villain.

The problem we noted is the level of lethality, and even with the short-chase option there is a very strong chance of an old style Call of Cthulhu-esque  ending where none of the characters at the finale were there at the start. Not saying this is bad; the system works beautifully for a poignant, Seven Samurai style showdown, but feels a little harsh if you want to actually reach the end of your search.

Whether this is handled by more opportunities for healing between towns, or perhaps a more cinematic approach to each session, or even just more options to choose when you all meet your destiny – say, “It was in the fourth town that we found him, but this is the story of the first.” – might give more options for campaign play.

I weigh whether the final showdown with the Immortal Bastard should be a question of dice at all, whether we couldn’t use a newer-fangled collaborative thing to decide how it ends. But perhaps that’s just my rules aversion talking.

What I will say is that it is gritty as all hell, which I suspect was the intention.

Conclusion

I would thoroughly recommend you check out the Devil John Moulton, available through Drivethrurpg, and add your voices to this infernal choir we’ve now joined. Nick Wedig has produced a very promising alpha that we would like to see developed further.

Its a very timely addition to the Western genre, and with a recent revival of interest in revisionist works, it means you as players can play out the stories that you want to see.

So jump on and show it some love.

Keep on Rockin’.

Paddy

Gunslinger by Kenneth Lu A

Pic is Gunslinger by Kenneth Lu on Flickr. CC A.