By 7:45 only Carter and I had arrived at the Board Room on the bitterly cold night of 12/12. So to fight off the shivers we decided to delve into some violent psychological horror courtesy of Vincent Baker. Very soon after Sebastian and Elizabeth arrived and “checked in” with the Scene before finding a slightly warmer corner of the Board Room in which to play The Duke.
I declared myself MC and Carter was a willing player. I took a few minutes to try and come up with a theme for my murderous ghosts and Carter quickly scanned the 2 short pages of rules which are all you need to start playing. Carter’s character Ken was a young confident captain of a hockey team – possibly living in Boston… or similar city on the eastern sea board. At times of distress he thought longingly of his team mates and before ultimately meeting his end reflected that his death here would curtail his dreams of one day holding the Stanley cup. His urban spelunking it turned out lead him into the bowels of an abandoned ship-building operation. All the clues he came across indicated that violent labour unrest had lead to tragedy. Once the ghosts of unionized shipbuilders awoke they attempted to dismember him, at first he seemed to have been mistaken only for a scab, but as he listened to them play out their repetitive drama he began to suspect something even more sinister had occurred here. There was talk of a “lock in” … starvation… cannibalism. Fleeing the picketers he found himself briefly underwater but came up inside the remains of a partially built warship. His explorations brought him face to face with the spectre of a corporate executive who admitted to the lock in and further revealed that due to shady sections of the government procurement it made economic sense to have the ship scuttled and sunk in the harbour, (with a full work crew on board).
Things didn’t end there, but they got considerably worse for poor Ken.
A quiet night by HIGS standards but I was pleased with the quality of gaming we got into. As MC I probably should have pushed harder and finished the game sooner. I didn’t fudge anything but made a couple of choices that let Carter’s character live longer. The odds are definitely against the player and, much like Doomed Pilgrim, the point of the game is to confront and play out character death with style.