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Theo Brinkman
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Just ran my first game of Masks, and we had a blast.

The heroes are:
Prophet, a Legacy best described as Sherlock Wayne, played by Jinny.
Razorback, a Transformed high school linebacker transformed into an orc-like beast, played by Andy.
Zero, a silver-skinned, shape shifting Outsider from the 31st dimension, who also has mental powers, played by their 13 year-old son.
'Tank', a Bull with confidence issues, and powers that manifest as a touch-ranged inertial dampening field, played by Nick.

In their get together fight, they wrecked a multi-level subway station, battling 'The Mass', a gravity/density controller who had been created by Dr. Elias Cambridge, head of research at the Halcyon City Technical Institute.  Dr. Cambridge secretly has a bit of a mad scientist streak, and is experimenting to create supers.  The Mass was his first noteworthy success, and Elias is really not fond of the team after they took down his creation.  (The team doesn't know any of this backstory, but the players came up with this great backstory to meld everything together.)

After getting concepts settled in and going through the questions, they were hanging out in the Prophet's 'bat cave', when an alert came through.  The Collector was on the loose, ransacking the Halcyon City Technical Institute.  The Collector shows up in Halcyon almost at random, causes a lot of havoc, and leaves, taking apparently random people with her.  Nobody knows where she comes from, or what her goals are.  Her most 'interesting' feature is that when she fights supers, sometimes it is as if she has never even heard of them, even though she has fought them before, other times she knows virtually everything there is to know about the hero and how to counter him/her.

They arrive on scene quickly, using a combination of the Bull's inertial dampers and the Outsider's flight power to make their way downtown.
Upon arriving, they see the Collector hovering in the middle of the quad, and her robotic spiders scurrying around picking up bystanders, scanning them, and discarding them.  She's looking for someone specific, but hasn't found her target yet.

The Razorback and Tank jump into action, initially focusing on taking out the spiders so bystanders can get to safety.  Prophet observes from a good vantage point, and quickly realizes that The Collector is seeking a specific individual, and she obviously hasn't found them yet.

Zero wants to end the fight quickly, so he shifts into a pointed form, and goes hypersonic, trying to spear the Collector.  Things go poorly for him, as she seems to have been expecting that.  She turns to face him just before he hits, and as he spears her, she gives him a sad, disappointed smile (as if she really didn't want to have to do this), giggles, and unleashes a massive electrical charge into Zero, who is now Insecure and Afraid.  (He just speared his target through the gut, and she was prepared for it.)

Meanwhile, the Prophet ransacks damaged spider-bots for intel, discovering that the Collector's target is none other than Dr. Elias Cambridge himself.  She relays that information to the team, and campus security, while she works out a plan.

Tank narrowly evades a new swarm of spider-bots thanks to the quick thinking of Razorback, but ends up in a poor location.  Thinking quickly, she sprints off the rooftop, manipulating her inertia so she could make the jump to the Collector, still hovering above the scene.  Landing a solid blow, she drags the Collector and Zero to the ground, and Razorback piles on hoping to distract/disable the villain long enough to take her out of the fight.

Thinking quickly, Zero tries to figure out what the Collector's overall plan is, probing her mind for information.  He gets only a quick flash of an image: a blasted, wasteland, completely devoid of life, except for the Collector herself, grief-stricken and sobbing at the sight.  He gets the distinct impression that she's not responsible for whatever scorched the world clean of life.  The visceral, mind-breaking sight freaks out Zero, causing him to destructively unleash his powers, throwing Razorback, Tank, and a few dozen spider droids a good distance from where the Collector had just been.  (She had teleported away after summoning more bots.)  Prophet scolds Zero for his recklessness, and he accepts her evaluation of his actions (-Superior, +Danger).

Distraught, and angry, the Collector tried to pin down Prophet with a stasis field, and sent some of her spider-bots to endanger bystanders in order to buy time for another group to hunt down her newly located prey.

Prophet leaps into action, fending off the bots long enough for a crowd of fleeing students to get clear, managing to grab the memory core from one of the disabled spiders in the process.  Tank gets creative, and decides that the parking lot would make a good barricade.  She goes a bit overboard, and instead of simply flipping the pavement over onto the spider swarm, she flips it like a table, and it lands leaning up against the building the droids were heading towards, blocking all of the entrances on that side of the building with 6" of asphalt.

Razorback is shaking off the pain from an awkward landing, as Zero tries to talk down the Collector.  He manages to get her talking to him, and she tells him, "I need certain people...so many people.  If they aren't there, I won't be able to stop it.  I can't let it happen again!  But maybe this isn't the right time..." before she and her spider-bots vanish back to wherever they came from.

Having defeated(?) The Collector with no loss of life, and without her managing to collect her prey, the team retires back to the Prophet's 'bat cave' to recuperate and debrief.

Zero tells the team what he's discovered, and it gets them all thinking about what the Collector might be trying to prevent.  (Is she really a villain?  Is she a misguided hero?  Or is what she's doing actually necessary?  If so, what does that mean for them?)

As they recover, they find themselves watching the news, as the Collector fights the Collector, trying to prevent an abduction, screeching about how, "It's not the right time!  You can't take him yet!"

Sensibly, the decide not to get involved...this time.

-------------------------------------

Zero ends the night, -2 Superior, +2 Danger, realizing for the first time that he's really not that much better than everyone else, and he's got to think things through more instead of just reacting, or he's going to get people hurt.
Legacy ended the night with 3 Potential marked, and a greater attachment to the team.
Tank ended the night Insecure, but with 1 Potential marked.
Razorback ended the night feeling less connected to the team, despite their reassurances that he had been valuable in the fight.

It was a great session, with everybody agreeing that they'd like to continue with things.  (It'll be a periodic back-up game for when someone can't make it to our regular gaming night.)

-------------------------------------

The Collector is a time-traveler, somewhat inspired by Kang the Conqueror, of Avengers fame.  Her seemingly random experience with the heroes' powers is because she's encountering them in non-linear order from her perspective.  The first time a hero fights her, might be the 3rd time she's fought them, but the first time she fights a hero might be the 8th time they've fought her.  She is trying to prevent a world-ending disaster, and has determined that the only way to do so is to get the right people together, in the right place, at the right time.  To do so, she's jumping through time as she identifies her targets, kidnapping them at some crucial juncture.  But every change she makes to the timeline complicates the process of finding the right combination of people.  She's been at it for centuries, maybe millennia, and is growing progressively more desperate, and less gentle with her methods.  At this point, she is willing to do ANYTHING to ensure that she gets 'her' people, because if she fails the world will end, and she might not survive it again this time...

I shoot archery, and am going to be learning to shoot handguns in the near future, and I think it would be interesting to try writing some software that would analyze the video image and project the impact point of your shot, displaying it as an overlay.
#ifihadglass

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It might be a modern culinary marvel, but this life-size Star Wars stormtrooper cake scares the hell out of me.

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Alright guys, this is the last time I'm going to bring this up. Please copy and reblog this image as much as possible. Hopefully we can get people's attention and stop Congress from approving this disastrous piece of legislation.

Thanks!
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My new favorite t-shirt!

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This is Ira Glass talking to creative people about getting past The Gap. Every single creative person I've talked to about this has said some version of "I wish someone had told me this," so I'm posting it here in the event that one of you reading my dumb G+ stuff is sort of like me ten years ago.

...which is to say younger, thinner, and terrified about wasting your time making crap that nobody cares about.

I recommend printing it out and hanging it up in your creative space next to the Cult of Done Manifesto.
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