Saturday, April 07, 2007

CottageCon is On!

And after more than a little wrangling with the lovely people at (Ho)seasons, it's great to confirm that CottageCon is on! Now some people don't like me calling it CottageCon because it makes it sound like some sort of sleazy gay outdoor sex gathering. And if you listen to the people at Hoseasons, it might well be!

After all five men sharing a cottage, and two of them sleeping in the same bed? There must be something going on! I had to endure quite a grilling from the nice lady from Hoseasons about who we were, what we did as work, why we were going to that place, what we were intending to do. If I hadn't predicted it, it would have been quite disconcerting. I can understand the possible reasons why as well, but it would have been nice to have had it explained to me, as a courtesy.

So anyway, we have a nice 5-man cottage just outside Robin Hoods Bay nr Scarborough. It looks absolutely delightful and just what we were looking for. We also have an itinerary of games lined up that makes the mouth water.

On Friday, I will be running the first - and maybe last - session of Duty and Honour. This is my adaptation of Pendragon to emulate the Sharpe novels of Bernard Cornwell. I worked on the conversion document for a couple of nights and it has come out rather well so far. Its still a little rough around the edges and has absolutely no real gameplay direction within it, but it does allow you to make good Sharpe-style characters. As this is the first session I expect that it will start relatively late and probably finish late too. I'm hoping to keep it pretty light and have a fair bit of swashbuckling action involved.

On Saturday morning Ian is joining us and Andrew will be running a very high level Dungeons & Dragons one shot! It's Sword and Sorcery meets World War Z as we jump in at the climax of a battle against the creeping dead and their evil dark Lord. This is an intriguing prospect as it will be paramount for the players to REALLY bring the characters to the table and almost retcon in a whole swathe of stuff whilst we are tackling some of the big bad monsters that you rarely see coming out of the Monster Manual. Oh at first glance this should be a load of fun but I think it has a lot of potential to stretch our gaming if we go beyond the stats and spells technique of D&D.

On Saturday afternoon we will be playing the remarkably hyped Spirit of the Century ran by Ian. This is 1930s Pulp ran using a system that is very different from our usual fare (but far too close to my Omniverse for my liking!! ). Without putting too much pressure on Ian, I think this is the most important session of the weekend. Not only does it see his return to the GMs chair for the first time in ages, but it is with a game that I believe he can undoubtedly shine with and in an atmosphere that has to be made for what is undoubtedly a weekend of experimental gaming. I think if SotC succeeds, we could see these characters appearing again at some point in time and thats always good, and maybe it brings us a little closer to playing something like Burning Wheel etc.

Saturday night is set aside for a long, possibly drunken, session of Diplomacy. Now I will admit here and now that I am utterly shite at these games. There is a rather shocking irony there because my workmate laughs at my ability to conjure work related 'inexactitudes' to clients when needed, but with my friends I couldn't even lie about the time of day. The last time we played I was totally and utterly stitched up and I thoroughly expect the same to happen this time too. Still, we shall see....

When we arise again on Sunday, Ian returns and we settle down for a nice relaxed game of Pendragon. Well, I say nice and relaxed but things are getting very interesting in the world of Pendragon at the moment and I think that by then we could be knee deep in all manner of saxon mess. The campaign is moving on now, the characters are getting older and more powerful and the time of Arthur is slowly creeping nearer. The intervening years are painful though and some of the decisions are pretty tough. I'm sure Nigel will have something cooked up for us to make us sweat just that little bit more.

Thats whats officially happening, but I suspect there might be more as well. More boardgames maybe, definitely a lot of gaming conversation, maybe the odd DVD, some sightseeing (theres a tall ship at the bay apparently). Theres going to be some good food and good beer too. It just sounds like a really great weekend. Many years in the making, but it's happening on May 18th!


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