Actual Play – Demon the Downtime (6/14/2009)

System: Demon: The Fallen

Last night’s demon started with a quick 35 scenes of what do you do for the next week, followed by a showdown with some baddies. Phew! This is where my brain explodes. I can’t remember my seven scenes, let alone the other characters.

Here are some highlights I can think of. If I missed something let me know.


  • Started his week having the birds and the bees talk with Star and Lily. Only in this case it was more like the transgender unicorn and the lesbian pegasus, but it all worked out… at least sort of… in the end.
  • The next day they played fantasy girl make over and Jared re-sculpted their appearances… permanently. The breast perkiness was a clear indicator of the dominant gender and orientation of our group.
  • Worked on his thrall Doyle who successfully restrained himself from groping a hot barista.
  • Hit the office and worked a few cases.


  • Started empowering his secretary, who previously was little more a prostitute with a desk, charging her to represent him in meetings and aid him in taking back power over her company.
  • Remembered the Lore of the Wild and went nuts with plants. Fun times.
  • Got lost in his house which was mysteriously filled with a maze of sofas.
  • Spent time with John from the record shop talking about olides.


  • Learned the Lore of the Beast from Howard simply to summon crabs for Mr. Lawrence.
  • Went crabbing with Mr. Lawrence and eventually brought him home another huge catch.
  • Finished up the “mobile transport platform” (MTP) for Howard. Took for a test run but it was a little faster than expected and ended up in the drink after he hit the gas. Have a look at my beauty:

  • Had the sit down with Mr. Lawrence and found that what the man really wanted to do with his life was do some good before he died. And of course, the way to do that was to blow up Microsoft. Hurh? Sure, I’ll buy it. Marcel promised to round him up some young, eager men ready to fight for a good cause, or at least for a good paycheck. Enthralling Mr. Lawrence allowed Marcel to give him the skills of streetwise, leadership and increase his resources. Yay for organized destruction.
  • Knowing the Vasquez were upset with him previously for losing business to Ivan, he plied some of his trade and made sure merchandise was still moving.
  • Meetings: Marcel met with Jared to talk about the gang problem and his potential solution for diffusing some of it. He also met with Howard to thank him for his help and offer up the gift to compensate for his weak flesh, the “mobile transport platform”.


  • The first few days of Carol’s downtime were filled with sating her megalomaniac urges. As her door had been destroyed she decided she needed a new one. But not just any door would do. On her humble apartment, she hired a guy from Home Depot to install an entryway befitting of a mansion, roman columns included.
  • Later, she decided that she didn’t like the access code Lincoln had given her to her new alarms system, and used a code she liked much better. This ended up with a heated discussion with some police officers. Ha!
  • She also spend time at the bookstore, with her cabal and specifically Lily and Star, making sure they were okay. Afterwards she took Jared out to lunch to thank him for taking care of them.
  • Then she set about undoing some of the craziness she had done in the first part of the week!


  • Started his week find a key and directions to a huge case of guns and demolition equipment.
  • Went to Carol’s apartment, dismissed said Home Depot installer and added a high tech security system to her apartment.
  • Passed Galadriel off to Howard (once he hard remembered the powers of the wild) and let her go gather acorns for him.
  • Took up some work, helping out some people and when they couldn’t pay, they offered him a sweet motorcycle instead.
  • Took his new bike out for a spin and honed his skills behind the wheel.

Final showdown.

We met in the part, getting ready for a meeting with the Baron of Seattle and then got shot at… by a rocket launcher. We all fled and were chased down by motorcyclists (for the most part at least).

Jared was caught immediately but used his empathic powers to convince the foolish mortal that he was the “inside man”.

Lincoln got his brand new ride all shot up and out of anger ignited the other cyclists gas tank, blowing up his bike.

Carol got chased in her hatchback, all the way down the stairs into a subway station and talked her way out of the rest.

Marcel asked his SUV very nicely to drive itself and then opened fire on the cyclist chasing him, blowing his tire and destroying the bike, leaving the poor sap just untouched (other than a probable bike crash) but in contested gang territory.

It was Howard, however that got special treatment. He was perused not by a motorcyclist but by a helicopter instead. The wanted their money back. Who the heck were they? And what money? Ket tried to sift through Howards memory and found out yeah, he had borrowed a lot of money… to buy a lot of cocaine… to sell at a profit… to gain control of his company back… but he got ripped off… hmm, yeah that is bad. Ket is not a nice person however. 60 seagulls flocked to him and the main force of them went flying up to the chopper. Most of them died, some from being shot, others from the blades. But the ones that made it came back with eyes. Yes, he commanded his seagulls to pluck the eyes from his assailants. Sick puppy.

Jared, ever the hero, went after the two guys coming off the building with the rocket launcher. Only sadly they got the drop on him and opened fire. With the aid of a few more seagulls, Marcel and Lincoln charged into alley they were in, guns blazing and dropped one of the gunman, while chasing off the other. Procel was okay… wait, Procel was going to be fine all along… why was Alestor (Marcel) so concerned with the human host Jared?

What rocked

The chase scene really pronounced the difference for me between Demon and other World of Darkness games. We’re got effing superpowers! Yeah, vampires have disciplines but they often just boost existing abilities, usually not really flashy stuff. Werewolves have something right? I think gifts. Yeah, gifts of pooh. Some are cool, but most people forget about them. Mages. Mages are awesome, right? Yeah, they are, but they’ve got to be very clever and even their powers had bounds. Lores? Lores are so flexible and powerful. Being able to control plant and animals for miles around. Being able to ignite anything. Being able to take over any mechanical device? Fricking super powers! What’s better, it’s super powers with contest. They aren’t gamma rays, they are angelic powers. Why does that matter? Because understanding where the power comes from, and what it was meant for gives meaning to the torment mechanics and reinforces the Demon setting rather than undermining it. Super heroes for Lucifer!

It seemed like the MTP was delivered at just the right time. Not a day after it was given to Howard he was shot at with a rocket launcher and then perused by a helicopter. The machine rocked.

Some of the “personal” scenes were great. I loved hearing that secret Mr. Lawrence just wanted to blow up Microsoft. How sweet it that. Other great scenes: Jared and the magical Barbie makeover. Howard sending Galadriel to go fetch as well as getting lost in the maze of sofas. Marcel dropping the MTP in the water by the docks. Really just comic relief there, but fun. Also, the delivery scene was fun as well, with Marcel driving up in it. Carols’s megalomania was really fun to watch being played out. I loved the roman columns!

The systems once again stayed out of our way. I’ve complained many times about Old World of Darkness and how the mechanics are just slow and cumbersome, but it seems much less so in Demon. The mechanics aren’t great, but neither are they a distraction, which I’m happy about.

I always appreciate games where the players are able to give the story direction, this session was very much like that, although many of the scenes were really just “downtimes” (see below).

We’re in a fun conundrum now. Minutes away from a meeting starting and once of our members is incapacitated. We don’t know if that meeting is going to be a place where accolades or punishment is doled out. This could be bad. That is fun!

What could have been improved.

Though the downtime scenes were cool to have, I’m still looking for a balance of player driven scenes and conflict to move things forward. I know I’m a pain in the ass, but I think having a scene of “we see me working” is really not necessary. “We see me working and then we get a strange package delivered that I’ve got to make sure stays hidden”, now that is a scene to play out. This isn’t a complaint; it’s just a push towards fewer scenes with more punch to them.

It was clear the storyteller wasn’t feeling very good (physically) and it sucks to be running a game when you feel like crap. Hey Buffaloraven, hope you’re feeling better.

We didn’t get to the meeting with the Baron. I think this was in part because the game started late (missing character sheets, that won’t happen again as they now live in the house the game is being played in) and our personal scenes went a bit long. Also, as mentioned above, the storyteller wasn’t feeling hot, so we cut it off just before the meet. I would have liked to hear what the Baron had to say.

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