Friday 21 August 2009

Dickass DM

A few weeks ago, Brad and Rob began an experiment that they referred to as The Dickass DM, in which Rob would attempt to play through the Fighting Fantasy gamebook Starship Traveller as if it were an actual table-top RPG.

Previously on Dickass DM: Captain Braggart and the crew of the Starship Traveller have been sucked through a black hole known as The Seltsian Void, winding up in places unknown. Their engine has run low on Dilibrium crystal ore and needs replinishing. They find an likely source of ore in a nearby asteroid field, and Lt. Scarlet-Garment is killed during a mining mishap. Captain Braggart sends his trusty Ensign Redshirt #1 to reclaim the ore...

Read Part One here

Brad: Redshirt #1 journeys deeper into the cluster of asteroids. Using a portable scanner, he finds four likely sources of Dengarbudion. Which do you want to go for? A, B, C or D?
Rob: Let's go for...B. I'm assuming they have more technical names in the original text?
Brad: Yes. "First", "Second", "Third" and "Fourth".
Rob: Right. The second one.
Brad: You are aware that’s the exactly the same asteroid you chose last time?
Rob: Yep.
Brad: Science Officer Mc Spindle raises his hand.
Brad (McSpindle): "Sir, is playing the Law of Averages really our best option?"
Rob: "What would you prefer we do, McSpindle? Eeny meeny miney mo?! I'm the captain of this damn vessel, and I say Meeny!"
Brad (McSpindle): "Aye, aye, Captain."
Brad: With a small tool, Redshirt #1 begins excavating the ore from the massive spinning rock. He packs several kilos into his backpack and leaps out back to the ship.
Rob: Oh, they've found his backpack, mysteriously no luck with mine, though.
Brad: A small asteriod enters your vision travelling at high speed. You hit the communicator to warn Redshirt #1. He doesn't notice and the asteroid smashes him, to a splat, dispersing gore and gases across a small blast area. Sound familiar?
Rob: Increasingly.
Brad: McSpindle drops to his knees with a cry of "REEEDSHIIIIRT NUUUUMBEEEER OOOONEEEE!"
Rob: He really seems to get close to the crew. For a science officer.
Brad: Do you want to try and murder some more of the crew, or head off to a new system?
Rob: Let’s go to a new system.
Brad: Doesn't jetting off towards a new system just undermine the futility of these men's deaths?
Rob: Right, make your fucking mind up. You won't let us harvest Digimurmur, or rather, causality seems to have an issue with it...
Brad: You could try a different asteriod! Rather than just sending all your men towards that spiky, skull-shaped one covered with bits of space suit!
Rob: All right, fine. Let's go with Miney.
Rob (Captain Braggart): "Security Officer Cripps!"
Brad: The Security Officer staggers over, pretending not to be drunk.
Brad (Cripps): "Ses, yer?"
Rob (Captain Braggart): “Where did you get alchohol?”
Brad (Cripps): "What?"
Rob (Captain Braggart): "Never mind, you're going out."
Brad: Cripps jets out, swaying from side to side in the asteroid field. He crash lands on a nearby asteroid, excavates the ore and dives back without a hitch.
Rob: You have to be kidding me... I lost two redshirts, when all I have to do is send Oliver Reed?
Brad: Say what you like, this is a pretty realistic Star Trek simulator. An hour later, Engineering Officer Clank buzzes up to say he has enough ore to get the ship under way.
Rob (Captain Braggart): "Any sign of my backpack?"
Brad: Security Officer Cripps hands you a small satchel with Lt. Scarletgarment's screaming face stuck to it.
Brad (Cripps): "Is this yours, sir?"
Rob (Captian Braggart): "That's yours, that one there is mine"
Rob: I grab his backpack.
Brad: It clinks.
Rob: I'll live with it. So now what?
Brad: You park the ship in orbit around a blue-green planet. You run a scan for life signs, but find nothing. An all-frequency radio message is similarly fruitless.
Rob: Right... I can't help but feel somewhat disturbed. I mean, the ore gathering mission SEEMED harmless...
Brad: Suddenly the scanners pick up a signal. What appears to be a small ship is travelling towards you from the other side of the planet. Extremely quickly.
Rob (Captain Braggart): "Take evasive action!"
Brad: Switching to visual, you see a missile shaped object heading towards you. The Star Trekky siren goes off, and Cripps raises the shields. A blast rocks the ship.
Rob: "What happened to my evasive action?!"
Brad: You lose a shield. Do you want to try to contact the object as it closes, or go to battle stations?
Rob: "Battle Stations!". Assuming they actually listen and don't start furniture shopping instead
Brad: Another blast narrowly misses the ship and you prepare to retaliate. Your glancing shot weakens their shields, but not by much.
Rob: This is a pretty wank vessel really, isn't it?
Brad: Your evasive manoeuvre takes them by surprise and their shot misses by miles. Space miles!
Rob: Are they further or something?
Brad: Nah, just sound cooler. Your shot pierces their shields and sends sparks flying from their vessel. Your ship rumbles with impact as they return fire. You fire again. The shot penetrates the shields and the enemy vehicle explodes.
Rob: Hooray!
Brad: Resuming your orbital position, you scan the planet again. Readings are still odd, but you can find no *definite* signs of life. Do you want to beam down and have a nose around, or head off?
Rob: Beam down.
Brad: You land on a cliff overlooking a ravine. The land itself is rocky, barren and windswept. You can't see that much from where you are, so you decide to descend into the ravine - as shelter from the wind, if nothing else.
Rob: Right.
Brad: Using your portable scanner you detect what appears to be a stream running through the valley. Your scanner says it's water, but there's something funny about the reading. Which of your crew would you say is the biggest dick? Besides yourself, obviously.
Rob: I would say the Science Officer, plus it's a good fit for him to drink strange water. he's a man of science.
Brad: McSpindle feels a little dry, and bends down to take a sip of the water.
Rob: Hmmm. My Bodes Ill sense is tingling. This bodes ill...
Brad: On the bank, you notice a natural looking deposit of a yellow powder. Your scanner is unable to identify it. Do you want to take some to take back to the ship for further analysis?
Rob: Yes. It might be saffron; that will improve our culinary options no end.
Brad: The planet appears to be barren. Do you want to continue investigating, or return to the ship?
Rob: Continue investigating. Maybe there's Tarragon too!
Brad: The ravine continues into more rocky ground. The scanner reports nothing unusual. With no more spices readily apparent, and signs of a dust storm on the horizon, you decide to beam back to the ship.
Rob: “Dust storm” or “All the Cumin I Can Carry”?
Brad: Back on board, you make your Captain's Log...
Rob: Satisfying. It had been a while since last I went.
Brad: Man, they lie. The old ones are the worst... Scanners indicate two likely systems ahead: one with a purple star, and one with a double star. "Which does your Highness think we should head for?" asks an increasingly mutinous McSpindle.
Rob (Captain Braggart): "...he seems different since we got back from that planet"
Rob: Anyway... the purple star one
Brad: You enter hyperwarpspeedspace, and head towards the system. Once underway, the intercom buzzes. There's a disturbance in the canteen, and you're asked to investigate.
Rob: We're out of cumin! I knew it!
Brad: Once you reach the canteen, crew members come running to you. Apparently, McSpindle has been acting madly, throwing trays of food around and fighting with crew members. He's being held by three Security when you arrive. He raves and strains against his captors. Seeing you, he calms a little. Do you want to a) have him released, and try to talk to him, b) Get the medics to sedate him, or c) Ask for a report on the planet and the samples you brought back!
Rob: Let's go for the report. I like bureaucracy, that's why I became a Captain!
Brad (Mc Spindle): "He's going to kill us all! With big spinning rocks!"
Rob (Captain Braggart): "Stand down, you crazy bitch!"
Rob: Would slapping him help?
Brad: You run through the data, but can find nothing that would explain the Madness. The yellow powder is organic, but not known to any of the chemical analysts. You could make McSpindle take some, or call in the Medical team.
Rob: Call in the medical team. I don't want to waste saffron on someone that won't appreciate its subtle nuance.
Brad: The medical team arrives and prepares a sedative. As they approach, McSpindle lashes out and cracks one of the Redshirts across the forehead, knocking him down.
Rob: "Quick Redshirt, give him a kick, that was well out of order!"
Brad: Finally they manage to administer the drug, and he falls unconcious. A good kicking in later...
Rob (Captain Braggart): "That might have been a bit far. I'm fairly sure he had all his teeth before you started."
Brad: McSpindle is taken to Medical Officer Wheezy for tests.
Rob (Captain Braggart): "Make sure to replace his front teeth"
Brad (EMT): "I'll have to extract them from your boot first, My Liege."
Rob (Captain Braggart): “I didn't kick him, it was Redshirt!”
Brad: You know what I really like?
Rob: Go on.
Brad: The way the book has assumed you'd still have Redshirts knocking around, blissfully unaware of just how much asteroid douchebaggery you were planning.
Rob: Well, i don't like to brag...
Brad: Wheezy discovers a strange micro-organism in McSpindle's blood. He manages to mix up an antibody. Sometime later, McSpindle wakes up with a terrible headache, but otherwise cured. He still thinks you're going to doom them all, though.
Rob: There's no cure for that besides another kicking.
Brad: You want to head for the purple star, or change course and head to the Tatooine system? (Not a gag - look it up.)
Rob: Purple star... purple star. That was meant to be a Prince reference.
Brad: Doesn't work written down, does it?
Rob: Not really, no.
Brad: Approaching the system, your scanners report that the second planet has the idea atmosphere to support life. You drop into orbit and scan the surface. There are strong indications of intelligent activity. Indeed, they may even be more advanced our own civilisation. Do you want to beam down, or press onwards?
Rob: Beam down. Ooh, should we take some spices? Does this ship come with Gaydar?
Brad: You try an all-frequencies broadcast a few times, but with no luck. Pick an officer to beam down with you.
Rob: Security Officer Cripps.
Rob (Captain Braggart): "Clank, see if you can make any repairs while we're gone."
Brad: Okay, the landing party will be yourself, Security Officer Cripps, and Ensign Chemiserouge. You materialise in a deserted street. One one side the buildings are very tall, and on the other side, they are much shorter. Perhaps the large ones are business and the small ones are private dwellings?
Rob: Are you a DM or a Real Estate developer now?
Brad: The architecture is alien, but there are no signs of anyone living. You hear a whirring noise, and can see a hover car in the distance, heading towards you. As you try to get a better look, you hear a noise over your universal translator: "Over here! Quick!". You see a man-sized, vaguley insectoid looking creature beckoning you into one of the smaller buildings.

To be continued...


  1. So happy to have another installment of 'Dickass DM'! This is genuinely hilarious stuff! Any chance of making it weekly?

    - Runs to avoid the inevitable projectile -

  2. Yes, we probably could. But that would mean losing the E14 Exchange, the album covers reviews, and Shitty Box-Art Round Up. Which would upset people. Especialluy Rob and I.

  3. Well, yeah, but who cares about you two? You just WRITE this thing! Sheeesh...