by Brand Robins
Your father was the hero of the resistance. He girded on his sword and took up his wild harp and led the charge against those who had come to take your lives, your families, your hope, and your freedom. His courage was an inspiration, his prowess on the battle field a legend.
When they final battle was lost and he was captured they made an example of him. They took his pride, and made him die as a man before his body died. They made you, and your siblings, watch. Now you are a conquered people, they have taken your property, your dignity, your language, and even your names.
And we all know the story that comes next – the story of strength and vengeance, of honor and of battle, of a people who fight and gain their freedom.
This is not that story.
This is the story of 4 siblings who learn to live, to survive, to remember, and to love again. The game will guide them on a path that exposes their loss and shame, their trauma and hope, and helps to tell a story about how sometimes the greatest heroes are not those who wield fire and fear, but are those who kneel down, who hold their ground, and love.
Duration: 3-4 hours
No. of players: 4 players and 1 GM
Tags: Family drama, semi-historical, resistance, freeform table-top
Player type: You want to play a story about family and the possibility of love and forgiveness in a terrible situation. You make your characters feel real, both to you and to the other players, and care a lot about working with the other players to build a compelling story. The game works best if you can invest deeply in your character when you are playing them, but think about the play experience of the other players when you are outside your character’s head. You need to be comfortable setting scenes and setting an emotional agenda for scenes, as well as meeting the emotional agenda of other player’s scenes.
GM type: The GM in this game is able to bring serious content to life, and to effectively manage and integrate the creative input of players. The GM is responsible for filling in background, setting scenes for the establishing acts, cutting scenes, helping brainstorm, and playing NPCs. Your most important role is helping guide the players together and giving a sounding board and creative direction to their contributions. Less dictator, more dramaturge. But still, some dictator. You are, after all, going to be playing the oppressors.
About the author: Brand is a Canadian-American game designer, and this is his third Fastaval scenario (previously he worked on Run Them Again and Hope Is The Last Thing in the Box). This time he’s trying to not force his GMs and players to read so much English, because English is the language of the oppressor.