Friday 4 October 2013

Dickass DM - The Next Generation! - Under The Wire: Part 1

Loyal E14ies, you have begged. You have pleaded. You have used that silent voice of yours to ask one key question:

Where, oh where, is Dickass DM?

Well, aside from the archives which can be found in the top bar, there's a new one and everything! Look!

Remember good, old-fashioned gamebooks? They promised all the fun of a role-playing game, with none of the social interaction - what more could a teenage boy desire? The thing is, that while the gamebook became a great gaming experience in its own right, the only RPG it could possibly have simulated was one being GM'd by Satan himself. 90% of decisions led to certain death, and combat was often fatal.

Satan wasn't available, so Brad will be GMing Rob through an RPG based on the classic gamebook Under The Wire. Brad is the DM, and Rob plays his character, Alistair Braggart.

Brad: Okay, you have seven skills. And you have fifty points to split between them. You must have at least two in each, and no one can be higher than 12. The skills are: Pilot, Agility, Luck, Persuasion, Firearm, Language and Driving. Should be self-explanatory, but I can give you the write up if you're in doubt about any of them.
Rob : Where does Pilot come in handy? If I need stationery in a pinch?
Brad: "Since your character is a fighter pilot in the Battle of Britain, he will be faced with both difficult aerial manoeuvres and dangerous enemy pilot. He will need to give and receive orders over the Radio Telephone), keep an eye open for approaching aircraft and watch for danger to other pilots of his squadron - all at the same time."
Rob : I thought this was a POW one.
Brad: It is.
Rob : Right.
Brad: You're a WWII pilot who gets shot down, and you get sent to a POW camp.
Rob : Gotcha.
Brad: Unless you die before then. Gamebook. 1980s. Quality control.

Rob : Ok, so I'll put my Pilot at a 6. Agility at a 6. Luck at an 8, because let's be fair - it's me. It's not been so long since we DDMed that I've forgotten how rapey my luck can be in these games.
Brad: Heh.
Rob : So that's 20 so far.
Brad: It is.
Rob : Fuck, this is tricky to keep within the 50. Ok, 8 on Persuasion, 8 in Firearm, 6 in Language and 8 in Driving.
Brad: That's fifty dead on. Sure?
Rob : Ja. That's the 6 language coming in handy already!
Brad: Ready to kick off?
Rob : Sorry, Omer! Yep, alles gut.

Brad: In many ways, World War II was a continuation of the 1914-1918 war.
Rob : Yeah, just with a decent sized intermission.
Brad: The Germans, led by their dictator Adolf Hitler, were determined to wipe out the shame of their defeat at the hands of the Allies. Germany reoccupied the Rhineland in 1936; in 1938 she annexed Austria; and in two stages in 1938 and 1939 she occupied virtually all of Czechoslovakia.
Rob : Yep, that's accurate so far.
Brad: Apart from making verbal protest, no country tried to stop her.
Rob : Of course, a great way to stop a dictatorship.
Brad: Then on 1st September 1939, Germany invaded Poland. Two days later Great Britain and France at last declared war. Poland fell, and for the next six months things were very quiet, so much so that people began to call it a phoney war.
Brad: But in April 1940, the hammer struck again. Denmark was taken almost totally by surprise, and Norway surrendered in June, despite British intervention. On 10th May, Germany moved on the West; they overran the Netherlands in four days, and Belgium in three weeks. France herself fell in just seven weeks.
Rob : Which was good, for France.

Brad: The British Expeditionary Force of 250,000 men made a valiant fighting retreat to Dunkirk, to be rescued quite amazingly by an armada of small boats. Britain now stood alone, with the threat of immediate German invasion hanging over her head. All that Germany needed to do was to destroy the Royal Air Force...
Rob : Good luck, fokkers!
Brad: Your name is Alistair Braggart, and you a Flight Officer in the Royal Air Force. The date is September 1940. You have been literally living on Biggin Hill air field for the past two months, continually on stand-by.
Rob : I use less battery that way.
Brad: Every time the siren wails, at least three times a day, you leap into the cockpit of your aircraft. The Luftwaffe, flying mostly Messerschmidts (Me109s) and Dorniers, have stepped up their attacks and despite their heavy casualties, are gradually wearing your squadron down.
Rob : Where the hell is ME109, Birmingham?!
Brad: Berlin, I think.
Rob : Wow, Medway council has a *Lot* to do. No wonder they're TERRIBLE AT MOST OF IT.
Brad: Keep targeting LOCAL MARKETS like that, and you'll soon be able to quit your job and doodle for a living. For almost a month.

Brad: Only four months ago, you were a newcomer to the squadron; in the last few months you have seen many good pilots die horribly. Now you are an expert amongst the newcomers.
Rob : I'm an expert comer among the new. It's why I'm on that register.
Brad: Each time you go up, you think it will be your last. The seemingly never-ending round of snatched sleep, bolted food, diesel fumes and the deafening roar of cannons and Merlin engines are gradually wearing you down.
Rob : Merlin engines? Do they sound like magic?
Brad: Yes. Yes, they do. If it ends this conversation, yes.
Rob : Amazing.
Brad: One afternoon, during a brief lull in the chaos, your mind moves to thoughts of your home and family. They must have been evacuated from London by now; the last time you spoke they were on the point of going. Heaven help anyone still in the capital. You've intercepted dozens of attacks, but dozens more have got through unmolested to drop their bombs on the city.
Rob : I do aim to molest as many as possible before they bomb my family.
Brad: In the ass.


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