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Friday, June 29, 2012

Savage Serenity

I done did it.  I ran a Firefly scenario / game using the Savage Worlds system - I got the fan conversion here - at  I also used the Marget Weis "Serenity Role Playing Game" and the "Big Damn Hero's" books for reference material (ships, the 'Verse, etc).  I also found a decent listing of the 'Verse planets and moons on Wikipedia.

I was also using a bunch of game material from the 'net for the Serenity game - some random tables on how your crappy ship breaks, some Chinese language guides for cursing in the 'Verse, and ship maps.

I made a firefly crew - Captain, First mate, Mercenary, Medic, Pilot and Mechanic - all of them standard Alliance hating misfits flying the black for freedom. No Shepard, Companion or River characters, sorry.

I won't detail the game so if you play it, there will still be surprises.  Suffice to say, it was traveling through the black and not everything going smoothly.  The group I played with was gathered from reaches around the Portland Metro Area (Oregon) using (Portland Gamers group).  I also had one walk-in from the Red Castle Games calendar, and even one who saw my Reddit posting 2 months ago!  The night was also co-hosted by another GM (Scott Woodard, who does a lot of work withing the Savage Worlds scene) and he ran a pirates game.  We had 10 players for the night.  Success!  Alas, I failed to take pictures.

But, I did have a poker scene that I used a modified 'Chase' or 'Dramatic Tasks' to run.  I wanted to simulate a single buy-in Texas hold 'em tournament where the winner takes all.
Here's how it works:

Gambling: Using Chase / Dramatic tasks rules(ish):

  1. Everyone gets a card, keeps it hidden, but looks at it.
  2. Decide if you're going to cheat or not cheat, this is public knowledge to the players.
  3. Roll gambling (+2 if you are cheating). A success and each raise earns another card.  If you roll a 1 and you are cheating, you are caught! Ramifications to this will vary, discuss later.
  4. Everyone reveals their highest card at the same time.
  5. Highest card wins. Ties are broken in reverse alpha order (SHDC).
  6. Winner receives a chip (some sort of marker to count wins).
Play should go for a pre-set number of rounds, 5 is suggested.
Player with the most chips is the winner, if there is a tie, keep playing until the tie is broken.  If you want you can limit the players to only those with chips for the 'final table'.

Card rules:
  • Jokers are immediately declared and shown face up, player gets a replacement card, and another card. The Joker simulates a player 'running the table' - making good bluffs or having genuinely good hands and on a hot streak.
  • Clubs are complications, if you do not win, you are out. If you are knocked out, the player who wins that round gets your chips.  NOTE: If your highest card is a club, you can take a chance and play it, or play a lower non-club to stay in the game.

If you want to play a non winner-takes-all tournament, you can stagger the payout with the number of chips a player has.
Each chip gets a portion of the buy-in.   Everyone should have bought in for say $100 each.  player with 4 chips gets $400, 1 chip gets $100.