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CyberCabal - Fiasco - The Big Society

Well yesterday was the first session of our new online gaming group the Cyber Cabal.
After a few teething troubles, we managed to run a great little game.

The Set Up

We were playing Bully Pulpit Games' Fiasco, by Jason Morningstar, using The Big Society playset by James Surry.

After last time's test session we basically had to abandon appear.in since it because unworkable with three or four players. So we attempted to use roll20.net.

There was two problems this time, one player's internet connection was misbehaving, so apart from a few out of band messages, we could not get him into anything.

The other problem was another player had changed computer since our tests and could log into roll20.net but his alternative laptop's browser didn't want to work with WebRTC very well. So we could see him in the game but he couldn't get audio/video working.

After 20-30 minutes, attempting appear.in as a back up (which failed in the same way), we all ended up in Google Hangouts.

I attempted to screen share a play aid and my Google Chrome UI froze. I could still talk and hear everyone and they could see/hear me but I had to kill it using a terminal and restart the browser.

The Game

We used the Insta-play setting to save session time picking out relationships, needs and other things. Two of us had played Fiasco before, two hadn't and given the fight against the machines over complicating things would have been risky.

So the game started in a job centre and my character, Big Pete being forced to take a job as an assistant in an opticians. Consoling himself in the pub, one of his acquaintances, Bob, realised that if they could somehow cause an accident to Bob's uncle and blame it on the opticians, they could walk away with compensation or inheritance or basically money.

The cast of characters were not the sort to think through details so they proceeded to Bob's uncle's house to try and convince him he needed to go to the opticians.

The plan was to move the uncle's things around so he couldn't find them, whilst convincing him it wasn't senility but short sightedness.

Things didn't go to plan when they accidentally used some of the uncle's date rape drugs instead of sugar in his tea. Once he was asleep, they discovered on his phone an extreme snuff video.

When the uncle began to stir, he was bludgeoned and covered in what was thought to be bleach, but was actually an acid kept for nefarious purposes.

So obviously the solution was to take the dissolving body to the flyover. En route they had a car accident with the uncle's business partner - furious that he had left a live stream event.

After a run in with the police, everyone returned to the uncle's house to investigate the snuff studio basement where they found everything was staged.

However with the uncle mostly dead, Bob was pulled into the family business to take his place.

Big Pete's attempt to get money so he could avoid taking a job failed. He only managed two days before he was fired anyway.

Brilliantly we finished with the line "Should have gone to Specsavers" which turned the whole debacle into a two hour advert.

The Result

The story took less than two hour and is full of plot holes and contradictions but it was great fun so that was a success.

Two of us had played Fiasco and two hadn't. Whilst there was a bit of uncertainty for the new players they soon got into the swing of things.

Running the game remotely makes you realise just how much a simple game like Fiasco still relies on being physically together to play. Putting index cards between players and passing dice during video conferencing.
Our play sheet.
The attempted solution for this was a play sheet I prepared and loaded as the map / background in roll20.net. However when we had to go to Hangouts, all the other players lost this.

We're going to attempt to use roll20 again next time, because the lack of a shared "table" really does limit the types of thing we're going to be able to play.

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