Roleplaying The 80s With Tales From The Loop – Part Five

October 23, 2018 by lancorz

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Welcome to Part Five of this Roleplaying The 80s with Tales From The Loop Series. In this article we'll be looking into bringing more emotion and confrontation to your stories with this custom scenario, Animal Planet.

Roleplaying The 80s With Tales From The Loop - Part Five

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The kids are having a normal day at School, until during lunch one of the bullies attacks little David Durgha. David is a younger kid of 8 years old, covered in pockets that are filled with stationary, notes and documentation tools. Topped with dirty blonde hair and freckles strewn over his face, David tends to avoid other kids but shines during Science and Art classes.

Introducing The Kids

During one of the lunch breaks, David was seen beside the school pond snapping photographs of the local wildlife and taking notes. A group of bullies crowd around David to confront him and soon push him into the pond destroying everything inside his rucksack.

Decide among your players how many of them saw the incident, do they help David, do they confront the bullies or do they simply ignore the situation? If you decide to tell a teacher, it's very likely they wont listen to you as your lunch break, is also their lunch break and that cigarette isn't going to smoke itself.

Roleplaying The 80s With Tales From The Loop - Part Five

Later in the week, David becomes victim of the bullies and the teachers think it best to group him with the players for protection while they attempt to find out who's to blame for this behaivour.

Introducing The Mystery

During the week, the kids will get to know David and find out that he's a collector of information, his notebook is filled with various facts, sketches and photographs of every animal he's so far been able to discover. While most of the kids will have grown up with dogs, cats and even roomba's tottering around their room, David has a unique eye for discovering the invisible. Insects that are normally camouflaged will figuratively burn bright in his presence.

David's parents own the large estate outside of town which was formally an old farm that once trained race horses and offered horse riding lessons to all ages. With the advancement of technology, underground robot fighting pits and computer games, the locals are no longer interested which caused the farm to fail and it's now used to provide tourists a Bed & Breakfast.

Davids parents are very excited to know that he's made new friends and suggest that everyone should go camping for the weekend in the land. It's not too far from the house and it provides some time away with his friends and some alone time for Mr and Mrs Durgha.

During a visit to Davids house, the kids will discover that his room is filled with notebooks, telescopes, microscopes and Enclopedia Dramatica books that have been bookmarked for a variety of animals. Bookmarks are tagged in colour coded patterns to show which have been discovered, which are local, which are extinct and a few which are still yet to be found.

As Friday approaches the kids will have the opportunity to bring something of value to the camping trip, usually something to experiment with or something forbidden by their parents. Perhaps a dirty magazine or stolen beer from dad's basement refridgerator.

Ask your players what they would like to bring with them for the night away from home. David, on the other hand will bring notebooks, two disposable cameras, pencils, measuring tape, torches, tinned beans and camping rations to share with the players.

Roleplaying The 80s With Tales From The Loop - Part Five

A player who emphathizes with David or is keen enough to Investigate what he's bringing with him will know that he's very passionate about discovering the strange creature that lives outside the estate. David believes it to be a Wolpertinger which is a small rabbit like creature with wings and antlers derived from German Folklore. Introduced during WW2, the Germans unsuccessfully brought a variety of species into the land as an attempt to destroy the estate's agriculture.

Solving the Mystery

In the night, allow your players to decide upon camping games, activities and in general setting up your camp. Make the mundane entertaining by asking your players if their kids has ever made a campsite before, perhaps one of them decides to bring along a BB gun for safety, one brings an old portable radio but forgot the batteries.

During the night, David will appreciate the company and activities although after a little while he will return to his own quest of discovering the Wolpertinger. He will follow along tracks, discover footprints and various nesting areas for other animals. If the kids decide to join him, they can also begin to discover objects, animals and other small nick nacks around the land of the Durgha Estate. Here's a random chart of discoveries around the lands using 2d6:

  • 2. A disused Nissan Datsun, overgrown in foliage and rust.
  • 3. A locked up cabin that was once used by the groundskeeper.
  • 4. Skeleton of an abandoned delivery Freighter vehicle, what's inside?
  • 5. Creepy oak tree that hangs old shoes.
  • 6. Treehouse staching dirty magazines.
  • 7. Disused bunker, mostly cleared out.
  • 8. Rogue drone floating around searching for land mines.
  • 9. Middle age deer hunters sitting by a firepitt drinking beer.
  • 10. Crashed dronecoptor holding Top Secret Rikisenergi plans for mind probing technology.
  • 11. Time Capsule from 1862.
  • 12. A spade embedded over a fresh mound of dirt.

While your kids are discovering opportunities, David will be experienced enough to follow animal tracks. If the kids decide to follow David, they'll have the opportunity to bear witness to wild foxes, peacocks, rare red striped hares and forest snakes. If one of your players are smart enough, it's possible that you could help lift David's spirits by safely setting up a small diorama using sticks and stones that when photographed, may appear as a Wolpertinger. Give experience for creativity.

If the kids are smart enough allow them the opportunity to notice noises or large footprints on the return to the campsite, this can be a marvelous opportunity to play with your players to begin hallucinating in fear. Perhaps the creepy branches appear to be reaching closer to the kids, the wind in the air begins to howl through the landscapes, they start to witness shadows in their peripheral vision. Most of all, once they approach their campsite, a large eight foot, heavy footed Stegosaurus can be seen rummaging through their tents.

Trouble in the Night

As the large Stegosauros trumps through the campsite, it nozzles into some of the backpacks and empty tents if there are any for some food to eat. The animal will not attack unless provoked, although the weight and size of the creature is dangerous even when calm.

Roleplaying The 80s With Tales From The Loop - Part Five

Yes I know this aint a Stegosaurus... Make the trouble anything you wish! How about a giant mole?

First, allow the players to react. Give them time to consider their characters personalities. David, for example will be frozen in emotions of fear, and awe. He will never take his beaded eyes off the creature, he will slowly reach for his notebook to sketch down notes writing over lines, notes and pre-drawn sketches without care.

As a GM you provide the threat although the players should really decide what should be the outcome of this event. Will they confront the creature? Will they attempt to tame it and befriend it? Call animal control? Or will they straight up kill it in cold blood infront of an eight year old child? The Stegosauros will not be predatorial as it is a large herbivore, however if provoked it will defend itself and it can pack a punch if one of the kids get too close.

After the players have decided it's fate, whether it be aggressive or passive, ask them if they will further let the adults know, this is a redundant question as you (The GM) knows that the adults won't believe their stories, regardless of photographic evidence.

The Next Day - Conclusion

As you return to the Estate, whether the next morning from the campsite or in the middle of the night, David will be exstatic with what he's recently discovered. David will run to his bedroom, develop all the photographs along with the players and begin filing his notes in his room space.

Before the players leave the estate, David will enter a side room near the front door and hallway, while the door is closed, it will be left ajar allowing the kids to witness what's inside the room. Reading the door, it will have butterflies, horses and dreamcatcher stickers covering the pine wood, along with a name plate of Jessica. Inside David is talking with his bigger sister who is bedridden after an unfortunate horse riding accident two years ago.

If the kids talk to Mr and Mrs Durgha, they will find out that Jessica loved nature, animals and training her horses. After her riding accident which left her paralysed from the neck below, David has taken on his personal quest to bring his outside adventures back to her. Jessica's bedroom has been covered in drawings, photographs and pieces of nature that David has brought back. David sacrifices his own time to help his sister live her life vicariously through David's adventures.

Bonus

If the kids ask to investigate Davids room, they'll notice on his door. His full name is David-Adam Durgha. (Say it fast). Thanks for reading this custom story for Tales from the Loop, next week we'll take a look into how you can play a custom Harry Potter adventure adapting the TFTL ruleset.

What kind of threat would you expect to find in the woods?

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"Give experience for creativity."

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