barb (symbolic) wrote in roleplayers,

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Storytelling for the first time. Advice wanted.

Alright, so I’m planning on Storytelling Mage for the first time with basically a group of Mage newbies. I’ve never been the ST for any game before so I am kind of nervous about running things. Some of them have there characters made up already so I know I’m going to have a Euthanatos, Hermetic (actually, now that I think about it, she might change to a Cultist) and Virtual Adept. The other guy playing, whom is a WoD player, hasn’t made a character yet and I have no clue as to what type of character he will choose to play.

I recently started playing the MMORPG City of Heroes and I found one of the villains on it very interesting. Basically, there’s this mad scientist guy who creates robots named Clockwork that terrorize the city in a super villain style manner. I thought the idea was neat so I decided to adapt (read: steal) it for my first ever mage chronicle.

I’ve decided I want the main antagonist of my chronicle to be an SoE who went marauder and started building robots in his madness that are starting to create problems in Manhattan for both the traditions and the technocracy. I’ve decided to base my game around the player cabal fighting the technocracy since, after talking with my players, I found out they find the aspect of the traditions vs. the technocracy particularly interesting. Also, the Traditions vs. Technocracy thing works great for my group because they love action and plot twists. Plus, I myself am guilty of loving combat and action.

The player characters belong to a cabal whose master recently disappeared. Shortly after this, their chantry was destroyed by the technocracy (or perhaps the ‘clockwork’) and the majority of their cabal members were killed. The players, surprise surprise, were gone during this entire ordeal.

The SoE maurader that is building the ‘Clockwork’ is one paranoid dude so he has a really high arcane rating and, because of this, the technocrats are having trouble tracking him down. The traditions don’t really know much about him at this point, only that strange disappearances are happening and places like scrap yards are getting raided by someone who doesn’t leave a trace of evidence behind. The police are baffled because there is no DNA evidence to go by since the ‘Clockwork’ are machines and the police assume the robber is a person. The marauders ultimate plan is to show the world the power of machines by taking over Manhattan. Plus, he’s a crazy marauder, do I really need an in depth explanation for the things he does =)

Actually, now that I think about it, the marauder sounds more like Iteration X than SoE. I know I want him to have former ties to the traditions some how so I probably will keep him an SoE. Plus, I’m not exactly sure if a technocrat can go marauder anyways.

The aim for this session is to have the players.

1.) Find out about the clockwork menace and, hopefully, take interest in it.
2.) Trace the ‘clockwork’ down to a ‘factory’ (really a chantry of the marauder) somewhere in Manhattan that is producing them and stop it.
3.) Adopt the chantry as their own after clearing it of the ‘Clockwork’ problem.

I still haven’t thought of the chantry much, only the fact that it has a semi high arcane rating since the marauder is one paranoid dude. The main reason I want the players to establish a chantry is because I want them to have a base of operations. The vast majority of them are new players so I want them to at least have a place where they can be ‘safe’, which explains the arcane rating.

My problem is, I don’t know how to subtly drop hints about the Clockwork without being blatantly obvious. I was thinking of making the marauder an enemy of the cabal’s former master but I figured that was too obvious. The ‘Clockwork’ would be causing havoc around town but I don’t know how to drop clues about it without saying something to the extent as, ‘you turn on the news and find out people are disappearing from central park!’

I really have problems with starting the session. I figure once the ball gets rolling I can go with the flow.

Any suggestions of comments on what I have planned?

I really don’t want to OVERPLAN with this game because, afterall, this is Mage: The Ascension and its extremely easy for a player to throw a wrench (or entire toolbox for that matter) into the works. I’m sure anyone who is an experienced ST with Mage has a story or two about that =)

(Cross posted on random forums and roleplaying related communitys)
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