Thursday, December 17, 2015

Play Report: The Termites of God


I ran a playtest of Habrá Sangre a weekend or so ago,  here were the characters:


El Mini Grande - The leader of Lucha Libre Sin Fronteras' mini locker room and one of the head trainers, he was once the compatriot of El Grande - the promotion's perennial champion.   Having sacrificed his mask to save El Grande's martial pride, he now feels betrayed and gone rudo y yanqui in retaliation.  No matter where the LLSF pitches its tent, El Mini Grande has a malicious legion of black hearted little people at his beck and call.

Tornado Rosado -"Rose Tornado"- El Grande's daughter and bearer of his legacy, Tornado wishes to reunite her father and El Mini Grande.  Driven by a strong sense of justice, Tornado Rosado is a role model to her Tornado Scouts and wears the Mask of the South Wind.

Tobillo Largo -"Long Ankle"- A relative newcomer,  she earned her ring name after she gained the upper hand in her debut match with El Diablo Abismo and retired him after he refused to submit to her ankle lock.  Under the mask she is a medical doctor raising money to keep the doors of her free clinic open. Her iron grip is not something to be trifled with.

The Game:
 Bright carnival tents are pitched outside Monterrey, a city mid transformation m mingling its colonial Spanish roots with an industrial future. La Hora Cero is days away and LLSF' s future lies after. The luchadors venture into the city to drum up excitement for the upcoming spectacle: Tornado Rosado signs autographs & works community outreach, Tobillo Largo goes to a farmer's market, & El Mini Grande courts turistas.
Having worked up an acceptable crowd a preliminary house show commences,  Tobillo & Tornado wrestle the Mad Monk & the Executioner, managed by El Mini Grande. Action is fast & mean, advantages are created and Momentum shifted between the two teams, culminating in Tornado nearly getting the pin on an isolated Mad Monk. Before the ref's hand can hit the mat a third time El Mini Grande summons his Legion De Minis.
Small hands and compact shadows rise and extrude from beneath seats and in the aisles. Chuds are seen among the more usual minis, the crowd freaks out and vacates the tent in droves. The local underdwellers are spotted leaving the tent bearing Remi Alonzo, the late owner's youngest daughter.
Appealing to their shared past and the great man he was, Tornado convinces Mini Grande to accompany her & Tobillo into Monterrey's vicious inframundo. Descending through the tunnels the intrepid trio grapple with a giant octopus, uncover the Wounded King's last resting place,  recieve warnings of las Termitas De Dios (Termites of God) and their monstrous Worm Queen, defeat a Jaguar Eidolón, & Tobillo y Tornado get captured.

Entering the Inner Sanctum, El Mini Grande's flashlight reveals a great Aztec temple in relief, steps leading downward into a terraced abyss. At the very bottom he spots the luchadoras tied next to a panicked Remi alongside a yawning pit.  Sneaking past the Termitas swarming the inverted pyramid, Mini Grande takes cover behind a sarcophagus occupying the space and shape of an Aztec chacmool.  Spying a short figure wearing an elaborate buzzard headdress looming over and laying filth streaked hands upon Remi while whispering abominable futures for her skin.  Mini Grande scoops up a discarded obsidian knife and sidles up behind him.  Whirling the figure around, he plunges the knife into the carrion priest's belly and stares into the face of his greatest student, El Zapatito De Muerte.
 
Fueled by Zapatito's fading life, the knife sawed open his rib cage of its own accord and flicked his still beating heart into the gaping hollow.  The floor began to shake, acting quickly Tornado shredded the net of hair and bones restraining her and Tobillo.  Newly freed, Tobillo peeled the manacles binding Remi so she could make good her escape.  The floor surged upward as a mighty blow struck it from below and brincks nad stones started to fall inward revealing the Termitas' brood mother: the Worm Queen - a foul mix of termite queen, sea worm, and Sofia Vergara.

Filled with revulsion and righteous anger the luchadors struck at the abomination by sundering the key load bearing pillars.  As the ceiling came down, the Worm Queen tried her hardest to draw the intrepid heroes to their doom but they escaped by the skin if their teeth.  Amidst the Queen's annelid death throes the characters saw Zapatito's corpse drawn under the sarcophagus' lid....

Reflection: Forcing the participants to gain momentum before they can deal stress fixed one of my biggest issues with green Fate players - Gain Advantage is the best action for the opening exchange(s) so we see more temporary Aspects created.