Actual Play – King of the Sump (4/11/2014)

MC: Colin Jessup
Players: Josh Roby (Shit Head), David Gall0 (Sunset), and Sean Nittner (Grip)
System: Apocalypse World

Josh posted on the Nerdly G+ group that he was looking for some straight up Apoc World. No hacks, just barfing forth Apocalyptica. This sounded pretty hot to me as well. Add Colin as our MC and David as another player and BOOM, Friday night game was happening.

Fuck you all, I’m almost done

I grabbed and Angel because I’ve never played one and the hard ass medic (which I ended up not being) appealed to me. I just started filling out dots. Grip, appears female, stout body, haggard face, shining eyes. I decided the face was scarred, two burn marks on her cheeks from her face being pressed against hot metal bars. And shining eyes were really shining, like Fremen shining, some shit had happened to her that made her this way, a bit broken.

I felt uniquely comfortable in this group. We had started out pretty late (9:30 PM, give or take) and I really wanted to get in a game before we all got too sleepy. Note, this was at Camp Nerdly, so we were all outside in the cold as well.  As I got a ways in and the others were still picking away at playbooks I told them all to fucking hurry up and pick their shit. It felt right for the night.

Josh almost took a Hardholder but settled on a Chopper named Shit Head. A calm dude that Shit Head. David make a battlebabe named Sunset, a man with a gorgeous body.

I played my normal card which is “oh, you’re a leader character, we’re all in your gang, yeah?” It works great. I was the medic, abducted from her previous holding but now loyal to the gang. Sunset thought was more of a mercenary. Previously part of the gang he had recently defied Shit Head (calling for less random violence than the gang was inclined to inflict on the Sump people) and so his standing in the gang was uncertain. That ended up being the central point of tension in the game. What was going to happen between Shit Head and Sunset?

Apocalypse Drowned

We went for a wet, constantly raining, usually drowning apocalypse. The holding we had just rolled into was the Sump, and we had taken over an building in it (or the usable parts of it at least). In the center of the Sump was a building that had still working pumps which kept the basement dry (if not humid and loud), occupied by a warlord Corbit. A man Shit Head alone had met, and one he was in debt too. Corbit didn’t much like Shit Head beating on his people, but he provided something useful (muscle and mobility) so Corbit tended to look the other way.

What’s Wierd Here

Grip learned her medicine from a witcher woman in her old holding. A woman who was alive before the fall, who knew actual medicine. But she chose Grip because the (at that time) young woman had a talent. She could use leeches to help people. Applying them first to her own face to absorb the healthy humors and the placing them on the fallen to balance the humors of the wounded.

This got…weird. Eventually grip used her infirmary and brain matter from a recovering patient (who was no longer recovering after she finished) to forge a connection between the leech attached to her and the leech she left in Bar’s brain (the thug who had just recently had his brains mashed in by Sunset). This all ended up in me taking the In Brain Puppet Strings move. Yikes, Angel gone Brainer.

What Matters Here

What really mattered though ,was the conflict between Shit Head and Sunset. The game opened up with Twice, one of Shit Head’s reliable violent bastards, telling him that he (Shit Head) had to sort things out with Sunset. The fucker couldn’t be allowed to defy Shit Head and just walk around scott free. Whoever the fuck scott is.

Shit Head gave Twice leave to solve the problem any way he wanted, which he took to mean kill the bastard but Shit Head assumed mean go get killed by the bastard.

Neither one of these two asses were making any friends. Grip was trying to keep them together. Let Twice eat shit and die, so that Shit Head could promote Sunset to his #2 and have him as an adviser with a conscience.

It seemed like it was possible. Shit Head was open to the idea. Grip had a few other parts of the gang that she could control too. Shugsui and Mox knew enough to listen to her. Bar had his brain all fucked with but would take single order, and Swiss Miss (the Sump girl who Shit Head kept along to give him shaves but who really knew what was happening with Corbit) was on board too.

Fucking Sunset!

The fucker just couldn’t see a good thing when it was right in fucking front of him. Shit Head gave him options but he didn’t want any of them. He wanted to cut him out, go work for Corbit directly, give the warlord Grip as well. Take everything Shit Head had from him… and what was the chopper going to do about it?

Blow his fucking head off. Yep. One PC just killed the ever loving fuck out of another. And that was how order was restored in Shit Head’s gang.

Thoughts on this game

Colin really nailed it by focusing the game on the conflict between Sunset and Shit Head. I was stoked to play a support character in that interaction.

Josh does good job of planing the non-hard ass chopper. The guy who just doesn’t have the ego or the fucks to give about what people think of him. He was very good ad being hard to goad.

I wonder if I got too weird. Never quite sure with AW how weird I want to go. Self mutilation, glowing eyes, leeches. Too much? I don’t wanna be that guy, the one that goes gonzo in place of having character, story, or being affected by things.

Didn’t get a pick of the game but we were playing at night by a campfire, occasionally inhaling smoke that made us choke and generally cold as fuck. You know, as you should Apocalypse.



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