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Kingdom» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Cactus Flats rss

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Michael
United States
Boulder
Colorado
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Timey Wimey
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Then Hrut said, "The child is beautiful enough, and many will suffer for her beauty; but I cannot imagine how thief's eyes have come into our kin."
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This was a Reluctant PandaCon pbv game with
Lowell Francis
United States
South Bend
Indiana
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explanation does not equal excuse
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Andrea G
United States
Minnesota
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Panda Empress, First of Her Name
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Keith Mageau
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Summerville
South Carolina
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and Sherri (I don't know her username on this site).


We played the wicked frontier town of Cactus Flats, Nevada in the 19th century west.

Cast:
Rosa Wright, tough saloon madame who doesn't shy away from violence (Andrea)
'Shorty' Ames, cardsharp masquerading as a man (Sherri)
Robert Stillwater, owner of Honest Cartwright’s dry goods (Keith)
Lucky Carter, naive doctor from back East (Michael)
Silas Mariner, weaver, er... I mean, vindictive and corrupt sheriff (Lowell)

First crossroads: A charitable church organization has opened an orphanage in the town. Should the town force it to close?

Silas goes to talk to Robert about donating money to the orphanage in order to show the town's support, and is able to convince him to do it. Lucky, who is in Robert's employ, is sent to volunteer treatment at the orphanage.

Shorty gives some coins to some of the orphans that she meets, but later finds the nuns using the money to purchase dried goods. She is outraged that the nuns took the money from the children, and begins plotting how to help the children escape from the orphanage.

Lucky talks to Rosa about rumors she's been spreading about the orphanage. He's heard that she's saying bad things about the children, which she denies. But, she says that she doesn't like the nuns and doesn't want the church to have a larger influence in Cactus Flats. Lucky tries unsuccessfully to convince her that the church would be a positive influence in the town.

Robert talks to Rosa about her outstanding debts and asks her to pay him a large amount. She complains that she needs money to pay her staff and suspects that he's really squeezing her because of her opposition to the nuns running the orphanage. They talk about how the kids used to run wild.

Rosa begins covertly selling alcohol to the nuns, and starts to feel that they aren't such a disruptive influence in the town since they can be turned to the wicked ways of the town.

Silas comes to talk to Lucky and asks him to support the orphanage, saying that he'll get people to help Lucky financially if he agrees. Lucky is disturbed by the offered bribe, but points out that he's been a steady supporter of the orphanage and has no plans to stop his support. Silas also asks for something to help 'a friend' with his dreams, and Lucky prescribes some laudanum.

Shorty comes to ask Lucky about what orphanages back East are like. He paints her what he imagines to be a glowing picture of civic cooperation, but ends up convincing her that the orphanage is going to leave the children ill-prepared for functioning in life. She decides to bust the children out of the orphanage, but ends up returning them after they end up complaining incessantly.

Lucky goes to see Robert for some advice about his conversation with the sheriff. He thinks it's almost as if Silas were trying to bribe him, and he admits to doubting whether Silas actually has the best interests of the town in his heart. Robert suggests that Silas shouldn't be trusted.

A rancher comes to town on a semiannual supply run and sees that there are no longer kids running wild in the streets, and suggests that the orphanage is a positive influence on the town. He goes to talk to Rosa and Robert about the orphanage and the church. Rosa says that the nuns are making a stir.

The notes at this point:

WILL THE KINGDOM close the charitable orphanage that just opened up?

IF YES THEN….
• The outside government will feel the need to intrude more on the affairs of the town [LUCKY]
• Rosa starts to look like the REAL power in town [SHORTY]
• The kids will get scattered back from whence they came [SHORTY]
• The kids will run wild in the streets and cause crime [LUCKY]
• People will question the sheriff's leadership [LUCKY]
• The law-abiding citizens will blame Rosa and the gamblers [SHORTY]

IF NO THEN…..
• The church will become a larger influence in town. [LUCKY]
• The Sisters and the kids will end up caught up in all the skullduggery [SHORTY]
• The town will be a negative influence on the nuns [LUCKY]
• The kids have it as good as orphaned kids in a shithole town can have it [SHORTY]

Feelings of the people:

The townsfolk do not like having the orphanage in town [ROBERT]

The people have become less hostile about the idea of the nuns. [ROSA]

Power Promise:

If the Orphanage stands, then the Sheriff will help Lucky with his debts. [SILAS]

Resolution:

Silas decides that the orphanage should be allowed to stay open. Shorty thinks that the children will become the 'machine' of the town, getting work in shady enterprises like smuggling. To Lucky's dismay, instead of rising up the rest of the town, the effect seems to be the corruption of the nuns and orphans to the level of everyone else in town. The town doesn't like having the orphanage there, and is confused about why Silas is protecting it. Rosa and her crowd aren't thrilled by the orphanage, but tolerate it as long as the nuns keep their distance. Silas convinces people around town to donate some stuff to Lucky and to convince those who need check-ups to come by to visit, fulfilling his promise to Lucky.

Second crossroads: The Jenkins gang has come to town. Will the people run them out of town?

The Jenkins gang arrives and announces their arrival by shooting a cardsharp next to Shorty for no particular reason. They declare that the town is theirs. Robert is afraid of them, as they shot his wife last time they were in town. He locks himself up in his shop.

Silas drops by the doctor's office to remind Lucky of the favors he has done for him, and to ask for more laudanum for his 'friend.' Lucky asks who this friend is, and refuses to give him any more laudanum when Silas won't answer. They part frostily.

Shorty decides to skip town and holes up in an old mine outside town, playing solitaire.

Lucky gets drunk at Rosa's place and starts talking very publicly about how he's upset that the sheriff isn't doing anything to stop the Jenkins gang. The sheriff walks in and hears the last part of this, walks over, and pistol whips Lucky repeatedly. He tells the others that if they have any opinions on the matter that they'd better get their guns loaded, and storms off.

Robert sees that a new shipment of goods for his store has arrived. He has the shipper unload them in his shop, as he's afraid to come outside. Silas spots that part of the shipment is a case full of laudanum and comes to talk to Robert. Silas asks Robert if he thinks that Silas is a coward. Robert says no in an equivocating way, which Silas interprets as implying that he is a coward. Unconsciously, he steals some of the laudanum and storms off.

The town has reached crisis: the person who should be protecting us is instead turning on us by pistol-whipping the doctor and spending most of his time high on drugs.

• When Robert saw Silas steal the laudanum, he realized that he feared the sheriff more than the Jenkins. He rallies the people to head to the sheriff's office.
• Rosa thinks that the sheriff has lost the appearance of authority. She wants to depose him and make Robert the new sheriff.
• Silas goes to his office to gather up all of his guns, planning to confront the entire Jenkins gang on his own to prove that he isn't a coward.
• Shorty returns to town, but is shocked by the action being taken against the sheriff. She asks Rosa to help her take on the Jenkins gang, but ends up going off on her own.
• Lucky is back at the orphanage, having his wounds from his beating by the sheriff treated by the nuns. The nuns convince him that he must stop drinking and think about the future. He resolves that the problems with the sheriff can be resolved peacefully by reasoned discourse.
• Before the sheriff is able to carry out his plan to take on the Jenkins gang, he finds that the door to his office has been wedged shut. A moment later, flaming bottles crash through his windows, lighting his laudanum and ammunition on fire. He dies in a blaze, not of glory but of fire.

The town survives, minus the sheriff.

Robert rises to the roll of sheriff due to Rosa's influence, although he isn't sure he wants the position. Rosa comes to an understanding with the new sheriff, and continues to run her business. Shorty puts laudanum in some gravy that she gives to the Jenkins gang, and deals with them while they are unconscious. Lucky decides that the town is beyond redemption, and rides off.
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Andrea G
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This was a really super fun game. I love Kingdom, and I love the way the stories never really go the way you expect them to.

Also, I love bringing teh doom, but I think Lowell gets all the credit this time!!!
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Michael
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Boulder
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Then Hrut said, "The child is beautiful enough, and many will suffer for her beauty; but I cannot imagine how thief's eyes have come into our kin."
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I loved it! And I want to play it again!

I was building towards Challenging/Overthrowing the sheriff for the Power role, but getting beaten half to death before I had the chance was so much better. (Though I still do want to see how the challenge and overthrow mechanics work.)

I'm going to buy a copy when I have time to read it (but not before then, because having unread PDFs sitting there makes me sad, plus I just bought A Thousand and One Nights: A Game of Enticing Stories and I need to read it first).
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