Jump to content
Desslok

Horror game ideas for Halloween!

Recommended Posts

I'd recommend Episode 42 of Campaign (an Edge of the Empire actual play podcast with a cast of professional improvisers recorded and edited professionally, it's so good I can no longer tolerate any other actual play podcasts because they are so bad in comparison).  They take a break from their normal adventure to run a horror session (using the Dread micro RPG system) as they must clear their ship of a horrible infestation during the middle of the night.  If it wasn't for the fact that all of my players also listen to Campaign I'd copy this idea pretty much unaltered. 

 

http://www.oneshotpodcast.com/campaign/episode-forty-two/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, so I've got a lot of work done on this - got kind of a bug to write it lately.

 

I've worked out everything but the ending - I'm stuck on how to create a satisfying conclusion. By this point, one of two things has happened - either one of the PC's is possessed or Hethan Romund is, and in either case, the idea will be that the PCs need a way to free their friend and defeat the BBEG possessing them.

 

There are three possible outcomes;

 

1 (the bad ending) - the PC's abandon their compatriot to the predations of the BBEG and run to their ship (this would be a chase scene as the they flee through the corridors with the BBEG giving chase to devour their yummy souls)

 

2 (the dark ending) - the PC's fight their friend and slay them, sending the BBEG back to the nexus where it draws power from and then blows the ship up, effectively destroying the housing for the nexus (but possibly releasing the essence down to the planet they are orbiting)

 

3 (the happy ending) - the PC's break their friend free of the BBEG's influence and then either running to their ship or blowing up the ship.

 

Don't know how I want to structure these three possibilities yet, so I thought I'd throw it up and see if anyone had ideas they wanted to contribute (Desslok - looking at you)...

 

The Force Explorer (Updated)

 

I'm leaning towards setting the finale up to be a series of scenarios that can be put together in any order to a climactic finish, so there'd be a section on Caliban Freed and how the BBEG behaves and what powers it has, then a section on "Fleeing to the Ship" that explains how to handle the PCs running from the BBEG through the corridors of the ship, and the another one "Banishing Caliban" that covers the steps necessary to banish the BBEG from the vessel and locking it into the nexus. Then another for running to the ship as the Force Horizon explodes in sections behind them, etc etc. Then as the GM runs the final scenario, all they have to do is piece together the individual parts and then Wham! climactic ending!

Edited by Kyla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A good basic sci-fi horror story can be swiped from "Pitch Black" (and numerous other movies): the heroes land on a remote world, and encounter a base controlled by the enemy. A colossal storm sweeps in, awakening terrifying predatory creatures that attack the base and its delicious occupants. The heroes are forced to team up with the enemy to reach their ship so that the survivors can escape with their lives. But treachery always lurks when survival is on the line...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Way, WAY back in the day, there was a sci-fi game from TSR called 'Star Frontiers'.  One of the modules for it was 'Bugs in the System'.  It takes place on two ships, one is a refinery platform in the atmosphere of a gas giant.  The platform, named 'Jetsom', is suspended via large gas bags, kind of like hot air balloons.  The refinery sucks in a gas that can be refined into a catalyst, and does a very basic, crude refinement on site.  Once a month, a supply shuttle from the second ship, the 'Moneyspider', docks at Jetsom, switches over crews, and takes any crude catalyst back to Moneyspider.  Moneyspider is a cargo ship tethered to an ice comet.  The ship 'spins' around the comet on the tether and that provides gravity.  The comet is also harvested for ice for heat shields for the cargo shuttles.
When the PC's arrive at Moneyspider, theres an issue.  Jetsom has gone 'dark'...no transmissions, no calls for help, barely an IFF beacon still operating.  The Moneyspider sent the second crew to Jetsom to find out what was going on, but a freak storm destroyed the ice shield with a lightning strike, and the shuttle incinerated on approach.  What neither the Company nor the PC's know is that the charged atmosphere of the gas giant is home to an electronic life form that invades computer systems as a virus.  Jetsom was infected two months prior during an electrical disturbance.  Over time, the systems began to malfunction, and the droids on the platform killed the crew...well...almost all of the crew.  When the scheduled change of crews took place, the virus was taken back to the Moneyspider.  Jetsom and its droids are very infected, and the Moneyspider is starting to show odd glitches in its systems and one of the droids.  What nobody on the Moneyspider is aware of, is that one of the Moneyspider crew is actually an android...and is infected....

The module was pretty okay for an '80's sci-fi game.  It had its moments, but wasn't what you would call a 'slasher' or 'horror' game.  But it did develop a healthy paranoia in the players.  Especially when the infected android gave the game a 'The Thing' vibe.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, that's far and away ridiculous (but in a good way). I'll read it after dinner and see if I have any suggestions.

 

Awesome! There are of course spelling errors, some layout slip ups and word omissions, but that's just due to it being a draft. All that will get worked out once the story is keyed up, pacing, design and content adjustments are completed, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sooooo due to scheduling issues, our creepy spooktacular session is going to be the 23rd. I'm going to run the module as is unless I get some feedback, so I'll let everyone know how it goes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry - I meant to get back to this sooner. Okay, after a looksee, it's seems really solid. I dont see anything I would do different other than the setup, getting the players to the ship - but thats because I tailor every game to fit in smoothly.

 

Actually, that's not true. There is one thing - I would probably change the more well known names, Ripley, Dutch and so on. Cool homages are cool and all, but I find that they tend to distract my players too much, or color their perceptions of the NPC too much.

 

Aside from that, it looks great. I'll give it a further read and see if I have anything else.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yea, like I said the names were filler - I wanted to have something in place so that I could remember what purpose each NPC was serving to the story for the writing process - I figured once we got the plot stuff worked out I would go back through and make "Star Wars"-ey names for them. It's then a simple "replace" function at that point, and a lot harder to change if you do it while you're trying to write it instead of after.

 

As for the opening, I agree - openings are best when they're a fluid narrative, but for purposes of a general adventure there's no way to really do that - so I made reference to the characters from the module in the beginner's game. That way anyone going through that has some connection.

Edited by Kyla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Zombie" droids are my go-to spooky Star Wars theme.  From the Clone Wars or even earlier, their chassis and programming have deterioriated and their self-preservation modes are corrupted; they're all shambling around trying to find functional electronics to scavenge for self-repairs.  If there's one thing PCs always carry, it's tech.  Throw in some spooky atmosphere, maybe a setting from the prequels (the Separatist Mustafar hideout worked great; dessicated bodies and an aura of foreboding and loss).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How about: The death of Alderaan was so traumatic that it's millions of inhabitants can't rest peacefully and the entire area of space were the planet used to be is now haunted. Any ship passing trough the area (especially the remaining asteroid field) will become haunted aswell as the unquiet spirits attach themselves to the ship.

 

Pilot; "This debris field is all that's left of Alderaan, after the empire unleashed the death star at it. I've hear tell it was like if millions were screaming in terror and were suddenly silenced."

 

Smuggler: "They are silent no longer."

 

Pilot: " What?"

 

Smuggler: "I can hear them."

 

Droid; "Oh my."

 

Smuggler: "They want in."

Edited by Robin Graves

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The players are being stalked by a mysterious bounty hunter...

 

... that just. Won't. Die.

 

They have shot him (or her or it), blasted him, maybe even lopped of his head with a light saber. But after a few days the strange bounty hunter is back on their tracks.

 

Even in space there is no escape as a mysterious ship keeps following them. And destroying the ship seems as impossible as killing the bounty hunter.

 

The players must find out why this mysetrious figure is after them... before he kills them all.

Edited by Robin Graves

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The players are being hired to smuggle a mysterious man and his boxes of "experimental earth" * to some planet.

While underway strange things start happening. Could it be their passenger is a Sith... or something worse?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* If you are thinking "Darth Dracula" you've read my mind. Bonus points if said sith looks like Christopher Lee.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One word: Z-woks.

 

I see your zombie ewoks and raise you one: Rage-zombie Wookies!

IMO, Z-woks are more scary than zombie wookiees, in part because they’re not that scary before they become zombies. So, making them a zombie is a bigger change.

In that same vein, maybe zombie Kallidahin from Polis Massa?

Or what about flying zombies, which were once Geonosians, or some other flying race?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Zombie" droids are my go-to spooky Star Wars theme.  From the Clone Wars or even earlier, their chassis and programming have deterioriated and their self-preservation modes are corrupted; they're all shambling around trying to find functional electronics to scavenge for self-repairs.  If there's one thing PCs always carry, it's tech.  Throw in some spooky atmosphere, maybe a setting from the prequels (the Separatist Mustafar hideout worked great; dessicated bodies and an aura of foreboding and loss).

 

Check out the droids in the new Darth Vader comic. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

* If you are thinking "Darth Dracula" you've read my mind. Bonus points if said sith looks like Christopher Lee.

 

My Darth Dracula looked like Ed Wood's chiropractor. 

 

 

Nice one!

 

Ah good ol' Plan 9 from outer space!

 

(Oh yeah, just to beat any pedantic movie buffs... It was his wife's chiropracter. :))

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, broke through my block and finished it up.  Here is the first draft of it!

 

Force Explorer - First Draft

 

So, wound up running the game - well, more or less - yesterday. Since I was unexpectedly pressed into service, I wound up drawing more on the original Event Horizon, with a great many details from here. I'm working on my post game notes now - I'll have them done in a day or so, and I'll post at least the reader's digest version here.

 

One thing one of my players thought of that made  the characters more uneasy? They never did get the life support up and running again, so it was all space suits. He suggested taking away the radio commuincation. You can see - but you cant talk to each other.

 

It was a brilliant idea! Really put them on edge - and made the climax running away from the Hell Engine that much more fun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Okay, broke through my block and finished it up.  Here is the first draft of it!

 

Force Explorer - First Draft

 

So, wound up running the game - well, more or less - yesterday. Since I was unexpectedly pressed into service, I wound up drawing more on the original Event Horizon, with a great many details from here. I'm working on my post game notes now - I'll have them done in a day or so, and I'll post at least the reader's digest version here.

 

One thing one of my players thought of that made  the characters more uneasy? They never did get the life support up and running again, so it was all space suits. He suggested taking away the radio commuincation. You can see - but you cant talk to each other.

 

It was a brilliant idea! Really put them on edge - and made the climax running away from the Hell Engine that much more fun.

 

 

Note to self: Take "sign language" skill next time I play in a sci-fi setting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is a very good WW2 ghost movie streaming on Netflix called "Below." It mostly takes place in a submarine, so the story can be easily adaptable to space. No spoilers. Give it a watch!

Excellent recommendation.  Creepy, and a mystery with a reveal to boot!  I'm in the process of creating a SW one shot based off the plot.  We'll be playing it this Saturday :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So part of my annual Halloween viewing, I put on the Cannon Films classic Lifeforce, from Tobe Hooper. If 33% of my players had not been watching, I totally would have stolen it for a game:

 

 

Imagine the old Hammer film Quatermass and the Pit or the Pertwee Era Doctor Who but with eighties sensibilities (and way more boobs). Astronauts find three naked (and hawt) Space Vampires on Halley's Comet and accidentally bring them back to earth.  Then they have to run around London chasing the Hawt and Naked Space Vampire while she bones humans to death. And two hours later, her victims get up and bone other humans to death - and all this boning energy is being sucked up to the mothership inside the comet to resurrect the other Hawt Naked Space Vampires.

 

Okay, the story is a little batshit insane (a little?), but it's really good - and great gaming fodder. (Plus you get to see Patrick Stewart kiss a dude before his face explodes in a geyser of blood!) Would recommend!

Edited by Desslok

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...