Thursday, November 04, 2004

Stick a Fork In It

My Mob War mini-campaign is done. I had a helluva lot of fun and it looks like the players had a pretty good time too. The O'Connor Boys descended en masse on Big Al Tolino's summer home in rural Wisconsin. It was a slaughter. Casualties amongst the O'Connor group were light, (Pour a forty on the curb for Black Stuff Reardon and Fingers O'Malley. Poor bastards.) but the Tolino gang was killerfied beyond belief. Big Al himself was tommy gunned in the kitchen and stuffed into the oven. Even Big Al and Joey's girlfriends could not be spared: one was dynamited and the other found herself trapped in the cellar with team sicko Bobby O'Reilly. [shudder] Sollie Wiessman, Big Al's crafty little consigliere, managed to limp off the map, the only Tolino Mob member to get away. Some of my favorite bits from the fight include Tom Finnegan throwing the world's lamest dynamite at the gangsters, Al Tolino charging Dylan while the Irishman unloads two Thompsons into the Big Italian, Kate killing Umberto by throwing a billiard ball at his face, Big Al clubbing Dylan with a hamhock, and Deanie O'Connor putting a bullet right between eyes of Little Charlie Battaglia.

After the fight we went around the table and built an epilogue to the campaign, each of us adding a fact or two. Here's the post-Mob War highlights in chronological order:

  • Sollie Wiessman is gunned down in some filthy safehouse while recovering from his earlier gunshot wounds. With Sollie, Big Al, and Joey the Book all taking the dirt nap, the O'Connor Gang easily takes control of the first ward of Lakefront City.
  • With the loot taken from the Tolino mansion, Kate O'Connor (Joe's PC) retires from her life of crime and devotes herself to raising Fingers O'Malley's orphaned daughter. Aw, shucks.
  • The Fat Man (Ray's PC, whose name escapes me at the moment) uses his share to open up a restaraunt. Five years later he torches it for the insurance money and retires an even fatter, richer man.
  • With Fingers dead, Thomas Finnegan (Dave's PC) becomes Deanie's new lieutenant. He eventually gets rid of Deanie and becomes leader of the renamed Finnegan Boys. Dylan (Pat's PC) becomes the Finnegan Boys' primary enforcer. The Finnegan Gang gets along much better with Big Boss Massere (the shadowy crime king of Lakefront City) than Big Al's lot ever did.
  • Since Bobby O'Reilly (Loren's PC) is personally loyal to Deanie, Dylan whacks him during the Finnegan coup. A few hundred .45 calibre bullets will slow down even the sickest psycho.
  • When in 1934 Congress expands the power of the FBI to go after the mob, the Finnegan Boys are high on the priority list. Organized crime in Lakefront City is broken up. Thomas gets away by turning state's evidence against Big Boss Massere.
  • Dylan is gunned down by law enforcement officials as he strolls out of the Biograph Theatre. Apparently the Feds thought some other guy was going to be there. Turns out it was a simple mix-up between the names Dylan and Dillinger.
  • O'Connor goon Toothpick Cassidy (an NPC) goes on to further adventures. In his grey years he will show kids the gold watch he took off of Al Tolino's bullet-ridden corpse and tell them wild tales of his misspent youth.

All in all, I think the campaign went very well. The players all got into the spirit of things, making it a very fun game for me to run. I dig playing with these guys.

I learned some important things from the experience. Despite my difficulties in keeping the earlier Home Team project afloat, the mini-campaign structure as I envision it is a viable concept. I think the key difference between the two attempts is that this time I had a group of players committed to a regular schedule. By sticking to the schedule and structuring the campaign for a short burst of activity, we were able to cram a whole lot of kickass into just a couple months of gaming.

So where do we go from here? It looks like my Occult Crimes Taskforce idea will be coming soon to a gaming table near me, but maybe not until the beginning of '05. Until Dennis's Everknight game ends and OCT rolls out, we'll be playing some other stuff. Looks like Pat is going to run Marine Corpse, a soldiers versus zombies freebie for Savage Worlds. That oughta rock.