12/2009 – 12/2010. In memoriam:
The campaign was the most brilliant I’ve run in my life, and I say this as a 20+-year GM. Everything about it was epic. I once dropped a 20-page government file on them as an in-game handout, and at various points they listened to clues via voicemail and looked them up online. We had a big aerial boss battle on a multi-level combat grid. There were explosions, chases, ninja clans fighting werewolves, a military base infiltration, an angelic dragonslayer, a heroic sacrifice, bodyswapping, Sherlock Holmes as an ally (and brief GMPC), a talking cat trying to take over the world, an eternal love affair with an amnesiac rogue … I mean … I’d be hard pressed to name an element of the game that WASN’T up to 11.
Unfortunately, some out-of-game player conflicts split the group around New Year’s, two players walked (though we still get together for board games), and that was the end of that. I was crushed. It was like a family member dying. :(
- Baxil, on reddit, 9/2011
This campaign is being run in Fantasy Flight Games’ Fireborn system, in which the characters are reincarnated dragons and the game shifts between their modern lives and their flashbacks to their mythic-age exploits. See tomorrowlands.org/fireborn and fireborn.org for more background on the rules.
Once upon a time …
In a long-ago age, in search of guidance, you sought out Omen, one of the seven gods who created the world. She greeted you, in her traditional form of a young girl. And she said:
“I do know why you have come today. You have come to kill me.”
Her siblings didn’t take it too well. But that was okay, because your mission was also to kill them. A strange corruption had tainted the Seven Siblings, and they had to be brought down before the whole world discovered the gods’ madness.
It was a completely insane task. Ambitious to the point of impossibility. But you were up to it. You were embodiments of living magic, beings of elemental karma. You were raw power and shining scales. You were dragons.
Unfortunately, the Mythic Age ended – in ice, silence, and despair – before you could finish the job. As magic seeped out of the world during the Cold Times, you made what preparations you could, and entrusted your immortal spirits to the whims of time.
Meanwhile, in the present
London has been a little strange since 2001. People whisper of odd encounters, vivid hallucinations, and even working magic. Everyone’s a little unhinged, but mostly people try to put their heads down and get through the day … same as always.
You awoke one morning after a vivid dream, with whispered names inside your head, drawing you forward with an almost physical intensity. You stumbled into a small rooftop cafe in the center of the city. You met a group of perfect strangers, who all heard the same names. Your names. The dragons you once were.
And then a lot of people started trying to kill you.
Your life is now a series of increasingly bizarre and deadly encounters as you try to come to terms with your ancient legacy. The Siblings are out for blood, with thousands of years to plot their slow and painful vengeance. A magical cult is after your abilities. The Russian Mafia wants you dead after you got in their way a few too many times. A bum with white, glowing wings is on a mission from God to slay dragons. And the government is out to shut you down before your increasingly public confrontations create a nationwide panic.
Against that, you have only yourselves and a handful of allies — an amnesiac jewel thief wrestling with self-doubt; a brilliant detective who believes in you but works for the opposition; a talking cat who advises you on magic but hates your guts; a billionaire dying of cancer who once tried to mind-control you; a hostile werewolf pack that you’ve managed to placate with favors; and a ninja clan split by civil war over the reappearance of their ancient dragon masters.
Only one thing is clear in this whole sordid mess:
|In-game days passed||19|
|Campaign sessions played||24|
|Dragonslayer mythic-age fatalities||4|
|Of which Sabia caused||0|
|Anagorais mythic-age fatalities||>2,143|
|Of which Sabia caused||2|
|Tarot decks ruined||4|
|Siblings killed by PCs||6|
|Siblings the PCs remember killing||2|
|Siblings who are permanently dead||2|
About the campaign
“Sibling Rivalry” started in December 2009, following the published Fireborn adventure “The Fire Within” (interwoven with original material based on character backstory), and has taken off running from there. All of the participants were new to Fireborn when we started (but we have a collective 6+ decades of roleplaying experience).
Bax’s GMing style is deep and fluid, building a world with a variety of challenges and experiences, fundamentally from a Right To Dream foundation. Players not only face tactical dilemmas and plot-altering choices, but also are pushed to bring their characters to life and grow those characters in the face of moral dilemmas. All of this is interspersed with the vivid, flowing fight scenes Fireborn excels at creating – sometimes on a custom 3D fight map.
The campaign is about 30 sessions in, and in the neighborhood of 75% done with the primary plotline.