First session of Feng Shui 2 went well! Started with basically the intro scenario from the rulebook because I wanted to make sure I had a good feel on fight dynamics before I start tweaking things.
Everyone had a ton of fun and we were all impressed at how easily even a giant 25-character fight just zipped right along. The game engine is robust, elegant, and mostly intuitive. (I will also take a bit of the credit for it running so well, because I did a lot of custom-tuning of the Roll20 character sheet before the first session so that die rolls were automated and included reminders of relevant schticks.)
The 5 PCs we've got are a ton of fun:
- Xiong Weisheng is a Transformed Dragon, whose parents are big-deal badguys (probably Ascended) with their fingers in everything.
- Ruby Chase is a Driver with a criminal past she's trying to leave behind her.
- Myrtle Haney is a Drifter from 1850 - she's an actual Old West gunslinger type, trying to find her father or the gang of black hats who might have done him in.
- Thiegaro is a very fishy Supernatural Creature. Myrtle found him in her travels, and is the only person so far who can translate his fishy gurgles. Thiegaro is basically the Creature from the Black Lagoon, but with the personality and conversation skills of Chewbacca.
- Benjamin Dixon is a Ghost of a former policeman. 90% John McClane, 10% Kevin from Home Alone. He died in the famous Christmas Massacre in 1987, and was just set free when the city finally bought and developed the cursed property and turned into the new community center. Which then got attacked by terrorists within minutes.
We swapped out a few Schticks and Skills that didn't match with character concepts:
Thiegaro being able to become a human seemed to go against the intended roleplaying challenge of "Chewbacca from the Black Lagoon":
- so we swapped out "Transformation I" for "Flashback From The Hell of Knives". Meaning he can't turn into a human or talk clearly, but he's very loyal and will mess you up if you hurt one of his friends.
Benjamin being a Ghost Cop meant the default Ghost template had a few things that didn't really work with his character concept:
- We swapped out the "Love Potion" power, in favor of the Sorcery Schtick "Exemplary Prostrations". Basically, he can flash his spectral badge, and any cops, paramedics, etc who see it forget he's a ghost and accept him as a fellow first responder for a few hours. Really helped when the HKPD arrived near the end of the opening fight.
- We swapped out the skill "Seduction" in favor of "Police"
- We swapped out the skill "Info: Musicianship" a replaced it with "Info: Architecture".
When we were trying to decide why the cowgirl Drifter could understand the fishman, somebody said "what if it's like Cowboys vs Aliens, and you have some weird device on your arm that's translating for you". We realized that also solved the "we're in Hong Kong and your cowboy probably doesn't speak Chinese" problem as well, so we went with it. I'm probably going to say it has a built-in J-Meter as well, when we get to the Netherworld.
Like I said, everything went great, much fun was had, and we will be playing again in two weeks. Currently my only concern about the game has to do with Advancement. There are relatively few Creature Schticks, and two of our PCs (the fishman and the ghost) both have access to that list. If the Ghost leans into Sorcery a lot that won't be a problem, but if not, I may have to put some extra options on the Creature's list so that they don't end up too much alike after 10 or 20 sessions of play.