Learning to Fly

At the very beginning of December last year, the superhero MMOing community lost a home.  The much loved City of Heroes ceased to be.  The doors were closed and an eight year old world continued to exist in memory alone.

This was an upsetting occurrence for many people.  Certainly, it was a “game”, but for many of its fans, City of Heroes (as well as its wicked counterpart, City of Villains, and their linking intermediary, City of Rogues) was a virtual community.  Relationships, quite real and intense for some (several marriages stemmed from meetings through the game), had been formed out of the community that this environment provided.  Naturally, when those doors were shut, there were emotions of frustration, anger, and disappointment.

WE CAN NOW REJOYCE!

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City of Heroes is back…sort of.  Its “spiritual successor”, City of Titans is coming to life.  Created by fans and followers during the final breaths of the original, City of Titans (it wasn’t always called that) came into existence.  Over the past year, these volunteers (yes, they work around their own day jobs — these people are incredibly dedicated and, clearly, this project is a labor of very real love) have put forth their talents and efforts to bring a new “City” to light.  Collectively, they call themselves “Missing Worlds Media”, and through their, and the other thousands of dedicated fans of the game and genre, hard work we have seen a new Kickstarter project bound to life, full of vigor, want, and passion.

Having loved capes and tights for as long as my eyes and imagination functioned, something enabling me to play a cloud-soaring superhero is a gift I treasure.  Naturally, I will be supporting this endeavor.  I urge you to go check these folks out.  Like any Kickstarter project, there are risks involved, but nothing will be created by passive observation.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/missingworldsmedia/the-phoenix-project-city-of-titans

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We Went…WHERE?!

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Discovering and uncovering other dimensions, by purposeful experiment or accidental stumbling, is another Star Trek staple.  Whether alternate universes (such as the much-loved Mirror Universe), parallel existences (like fluidic space, home of Species 8472), or smaller “pocket” dimensions (ala the Nexus from “Generations”), these “other worlds” are a common source of mystery and adventure for the crew of any Starfleet vessel.  It was only natural, then, that we eventually get to one of our own.

This episode (actually an intentional two-parter) did exactly that.

Like many others, I was fascinated by the Borg.  I had found, however, that what history was known of them, either through speculation or actual reveal, was left wanting, and I wanted something different.  That is one of the beautiful aspects of tabletop roleplaying — you can explore alternatives, options, and different directions at a whim.  In this particular case, I wanted to explore the Borg’s ancestors, so to speak, and that’s what this episode was all about.

From a game mastering and adventure writing standpoint, I was entering a phase of improvisation with my group, hence the shorter page count on this episode than others.  Improvisation is something that exists in roleplaying games no matter what, but there are varying degrees to its implementation.  For this two-part episode I went much further to the “little prep” side of the spectrum, and for what I had in mind, it worked well.  The group got to really explore this “other where”, and I was able to react immediately to the emotional cues my players sent.

It worked well.  In fact, I seem to recall a series of “No!”s when I declared, “To Be Continued…”

Episode 14 Space Between the Stars pt 1