Went back to illustrate a momentous session: The Salvatores came face to face with the Calamity Crew.
Went back to illustrate a momentous session: The Salvatores came face to face with the Calamity Crew. Sonia (The Soldier) burnt away to nothing, Torq (The Nova) unleashed a brutal moment of truth, Panic (The Doomed) got a dragon friend, Halfpenny (The Transformed) began to question his deal with Mr. Hunt, and General Bowmaster (The Beacon) leapt into a painting. The episode ended with the whole team captured.
One thing I’ve been interested in for a while is an alternative to the Nova playbook.
One thing I’ve been interested in for a while is an alternative to the Nova playbook. The Nova as written has a Charge/Burn pool mechanic rather than a set of Playbook Moves, and this makes it play in a different, crunchier style than other Masks playbooks. It’s often excluded as an option from con games for this reason. In the spirit of the Mage alternative to the Wizard playbook in Dungeon World, I jotted some thoughts down for a Nova playbook that uses Playbook Moves like other books instead of a pool mechanic. Would love people’s thoughts on this, especially if you’ve played Masks with a Nova before:
A huge moment for our Doomed this session. She’d discovered a costly way to push back her Doom, at the cost of a number of her memories. Here’s the custom move I wrote that literally brought players to tears:
When you wear the crown of glass thorns to purge yourself of memories roll +Doom Track markings.
No matter what, every player present will propose memories that you have lost. You and the GM can both add to or edit these slightly. Mark an appropriate Condition.
On a 10+, clear a Doomsign and choose two. On a 7-9, clear your Doom Track and choose three.
—One of your secrets comes spilling out of you in the process. Now others know it but you do not.
—Shift a pair of locked labels. Explain how your self-image has changed permanently.
—Lose Influence over someone important to you as you forget everything about them.
—Whoever helped you put on the crown also loses an important memory and marks a Condition.
On a miss, mark potential and clear two marks from your Doom Track, but your memory loss is severe. What basic move can you no longer use?
A dramatic Masks session, with our first player character retirement.
A dramatic Masks session, with our first player character retirement… but all in due time. First, the battle in the Rime Court throne room: General Bowmaster (The Legacy) seeks out a mismatched single combat against a Rime Court noble—he (barely) survives!
Halfpenny (The Transformed) loses a riddle contest and gets bitten by a wolf made of dusk. Panic (The Doomed) takes command of some Rime Court hunters, and then freezes time for a heart-to-heart with Halfpenny about ethics. (She also flirts with him a little, to no avail.)
Sonia (The Soldier) defies Sir Quest when he uses her “Ignition” dogtags against her (revealing her new code name, “Caldera”). They free Baron Devastation, but find they cannot leave the room with the Rime Throne empty. Panic’s Doom looms as the empty throne beckons…
But Torq (The Nova) uses a moment of truth to forestall this, smashing out of the throne room and wrecking the Rime Palace in the process. On to Darkhavia!
Sonia/Caldera helps Devastation retake the country and spark wannabe Forgeling Beachead into Obsidious. But she also sees how her absence left all her Forge allies in jeopardy—Furnace captured, Aislin in the wind, Dr. Nix in F.A.T.E custody…
So, Sonia/”Ignition”/Caldera retires from the Salvatores to take a leadership position with the Forge, hoping to help the organization she once ran from become better. Rattled, the rest of the team prepare to return to Capstone, as they hear disturbing news about its state…
To be continued in March! What has become of Capstone? Will Panic meet her Doom? The stakes have never been higher.
Yesterday’s Masks session saw the team sail off-world in a bone ship powered by uncomfortable truths, hoping to…
Yesterday’s Masks session saw the team sail off-world in a bone ship powered by uncomfortable truths, hoping to rescue an old-school supervillain (who could be a useful ally) from the clutches of the Rime Court. Plus, one of my players set a new bar for cosplay!
Sonia (The Soldier) stayed on mission and also blasted off an ice-dragon’s wing. Panic (The Doomed) sacrificed a tooth to a skeleton to get here, and accidentally stabbed Halfpenny (The Transformed) through the soul with a bone sword (he got better).
Torq (The Nova) cleverly avoided drinking liquid nostalgia at a Rime Court soiree with a careful application of gravity control inside his esophagus. General Bowmaster (The Legacy) put on a show to create a distraction, but got so into the role his fae mask wouldn’t come off.
In the end, the team reached the room where Baron Devastation was enthroned/imprisoned, only to see masses of Rime Court Hunters pouring in as well. To be continued…next weekend!
Went back to illustrate an epic Masks session: The Salvatores, in a soul-diving ship captained by guest star Compass…
Went back to illustrate an epic Masks session: The Salvatores, in a soul-diving ship captained by guest star Compass Rose (The Protégé), enter Torq’s inner landscape and battle nightmare versions of themselves to save their friend who’s trapped in his own fears.
The Salvatores were strictly instructed to remain tethered to the ship at all times, to prevent their own psyches from intermingling with Torq’s. As the illustration suggests, they did not succeed at this.
I love this podcast about Powered by the Apocalypse games.
I love this podcast about Powered by the Apocalypse games. Their latest episode is a new feature where they pair a game and a movie, discussing how to read the movie as if it’s a session of the game and how to play a game inspired by the movie.
The first pairing? Masks and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse!
Latest Masks RPG session saw the B-Team get deeply into trouble while the Salvatores were off-world.
Latest Masks RPG session saw the B-Team get deeply into trouble while the Salvatores were off-world. It started simply enough: Kevin (The Beacon) got a mission to extract an undercover reporter from a gang war. He suited up and called in his semi-allies…
Craig, a.k.a. Glow-rion (The Delinquent), was in it mostly to get his hands on more of the superpower drug Invictus. He stretched his powers to create a psychic rocket launcher and to musically befuddle a knock-off Chopbuster. But ultimately, he learned that huffing a burning cloud of Invictus is unwise, and began to re-evaluate his life.
Adonis (The Star), now sporting a dark cape and mohawk, had a new scheme to get his acclaim-based powers back. He tried endearingly to cultivate an edgier persona, and did get a gang of Vaudvillains to believe he was his own evil twin, Tammuz.
For Red Cent (The Reformed), it was a personal mission. Her step-dad Bounty is the drug dealer under siege…turns out it’s part of his plan to fake his death and leave the biz. The two come to an understanding—just in time to team up against RC’s old mentor, Penny Dreadnought.
Kevin (as Sir Percival of Capstone) completed the mission with a Moment of Truth, stealing Bounty’s ride to whisk reporter Abby Rhoades to safety. The rest of the team collapsed into recriminations and double-crosses over the Invictus supply, ultimately destroying it. Huzzah?
Something interesting about settings for Masks fights: I like a street brawl as much as the next guy, but on…
Something interesting about settings for Masks fights: I like a street brawl as much as the next guy, but on occasion I like to set a fight somewhere out-of-the-way, so the heroes, their enemies, and any NPCs in direct danger have a harder time simply running away, and there’s a little more room for people to cut loose with powers. The obvious way to go with this is something like an abandoned warehouse, but I’ve enjoyed coming up with slightly more interesting settings like:
-An abandoned theater
-A run-down bowling alley
-A parking garage under construction, being used as the site of a rave
-An aquarium, just re-opened after a previous supervillain attack
-A performance venue in a park, built on top of the hand of a giant alien robot (the debris from a legendary superhero battle)
What fun setting have you found for Masks fight scenes?