Five for Friday 23: Five Questions for Rob Conley

Hey, Kids! I am thrilled to have Rob Conley (Bat in the Attic) as part of my blog today. He is the author of numerous gaming products from Goodman Games (Thieves of Fortress Badabaskor, Points of Light, Points of Light II) and his own Bat in the Attic Games (Majestic Wilderlands, Blackmarsh, Scourge of the Demon Wolf).

Here are Rob’s answers to my Five for Friday questions:

What was your weirdest gaming experience?
Going to Toronto and playing NERO (a boffer LARP) in a vampire club. It was black…very very black (although the use of the basement for a dungeon labyrinth was cool due to the fact it was built of this old stone masonry). The upstairs though, man, I didn't know how much black could be in a building until I went there.

In what ways is your style as a player different than your style as a GM? (assuming they are different)
When I play, I roleplay my character and interact with other characters, whether NPCs or PCs. Pretty much my main focus is to immerse myself into the setting and character…which is one reason why I like LARPS so much as a player.

I do this when I referee as well but I’ve got a bunch of other things that has to go on as well along with the responsibility of handling the whole world outside of the PCs.

If you were a dragon, what kind of dragon would you be?
Silver, they are workhorse of the good dragons. They do cool stuff without being pompous, like Gold Dragons, and self-centered. like Brass, Bronze, and Copper dragons.

Is there a game or ruleset that you have not played that you would really like to try? If so, what?
Fate, I just can't figure the out the main points of the system, especially stunts. Generally is resolved after I play with somebody who know what they are doing. But I haven't had a chance yet.

What was the name of your favorite player character (played by you)? Give us some details.
I would have to say Argyll Malcolm MacDoughall a human fighter…both as a tabletop character and a LARP character. Somehow, with this guy, my luck shoots up to an 18 and, while I don't always "win," I am always doing something interesting.

I play Argyll with a Scottish accent and when I play him in a LARP I wear a full nine yard kilt. As it turns out a nine yard kilt is pretty useful to wear.

During a LARP event I was sitting in a tavern when another PC sat down across the table from me and said I was wearing a skirt. I politely ask him to repeat that and he say very slowly "You are wearing a skirt". Now, one of the useful thing about wearing a nine-yard kilt is that the folds are great for hiding things, including a two foot long short sword that I keep in the back fold. So, after he repeated, it I stretched and in one motion drew and proceeded to knock his character out in one blow. Then I put the sword back before anybody would react.

The whole tavern immediately leaped up and drew weapons and readied spells, very confused as to what just happened. Quickly, it became obvious that I did something to KO the guy but as nobody was really paying attention to me they are were confused as to how I did it. The culmination of all this was when the Baroness came into to investigate the incident. The conversation went something like this;

Baroness: I have a report you were involved in an attack?
Argyll <sipping my mug>: Yes I was.
Baroness <looking startled because the usual thing is for a player is to deny everything>
Baroness: Well, you can't just do that you know.
Argyll: Yes I can, I just did it. He should know better than to say I was wearing a skirt.
Baroness: Well we have laws against that, you know.
Argyll: Ah yes, well then here my fine <I throw 10 gold pieces onto the table>.
Baroness: <stares at me for a minute, not knowing what to say>
Baroness: You keep your gold and we will let you go this time. But don't do this again or there will be severe consequences.
Argyll: <I continue to sip my mug not saying anything>
Baroness:<Tries to figure out whether she had the last word and then decides to leave>.

The guy never tried to mess with Argyll again.

One problem with NERO LARP and adventuring is the mob of treasure seekers. Basically real-life rooms are pretty small and when you got a party of 5 to 8 people, a room gets crowded quickly and everything is searched and picked over pretty quickly. Normally, like in tabletop, everybody throws what they find in the pot and it gets split later. But in adventures that involved more than one group working together the splitting doesn't go smoothly or even fairly if one of the groups has nobles with them.

Well more than a few times as Argyll, I was able to spot a item out of sight in a corner, snag it , and put it into my kilt with none of the nobles the wiser. What makes this notable is that this never happens to me when I play my other LARP characters.

I will have to mention Boog as well, which is the only character that managed to "knock prone" another player out of game.

Boog is a half-orc fighter that I use as one of my "stock" characters at a convention. I play him with a distinct personality. One of his quirks he always refers to himself in the third person unless he gets angry. While his Intelligence is 12, he has a Wisdom of 7, so he doesn't always quite things through the implication of he thinks up.

So during one game at a con the adventure involved this weird journey through the dreams of the noble lady we were trying to help. The incident with the "prone player" occurred when we found this cottage where it turns out that one of her hang ups is mourning her lost baby by constructing a dream baby to take of. Unfortunately this meant also she didn't want to leave the dream world. So Boog using his famed Boog logic offers a solution where he takes his axe, chops the dream baby in half, and shows the result to the lady. Thus showing that it not real and snapping her back to reality.

Now written it sounds morbid but said in the third person voice I use for Boog it supposed to sound goofy and ludicrous reflecting Boog's 7 Wisdom. It got the laughs I expected from the rest the table when I hear a thud next to me. The player next to me found it funny it enough to be a gut buster and literally fell out of his chair laughing. After that, there was a total chaos of laughter at the table and it took a couple of minutes before everybody, including myself, got enough of a grip to resume the game.