02 03 Nerd Lunch: Oddly Shaped Dice: Cowboys and Aliens 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Oddly Shaped Dice: Cowboys and Aliens

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PLee has been heading up the Oddly Shaped Dice posts, but I figured I'd jump in and talk about one of the one-shots I ran a few years ago. I got into a Western kick after watching Firefly. Once Firefly was canceled, I wanted more of the frontier justice and began watching a genre that I had never really touched before.

With this in mind, and a long-time love for sci-fi, I decided to try to marry the two in a game. I feel that I wasn't that successful at it. I'm not the greatest when it comes to game mastering. But I did have a lot of help from the Dog House Rules Sidewinder Recoiled rules. It's a great product taking the D20 Modern system and adapting it for the Western genre. I combined that with a little D20 Future and a little Star Wars RPG and came up with something that had a lot of potential.

I think the problem was the one-shot approach. I GMed a TV series pilot when I should have been GMing a major motion picture.

We had five guys playing that day and I gave them all packets with a cover page showing a picture of the actor I had cast as their character. This could make a decent TV show.

Rutherford Carson (Robert Patrick)
He's a former bounty hunter, but in his older age, he's settled down in a small western town, where eventually the folk there made him lawman.

Sam "Morg" Morgan (Gerald McRaney)
He's the town barkeep and one of the original settlers. He's one of the reason the town is still alive. One tough cookie, the fact that he has three beautiful daughters always being pursued adds to his general crankiness.

Wertham Cain (Brad Dourif)
Traveling preacher who believes himself to be the Lord's angel of vengeance. His mission is simple, "Help the helpless."

Armand Domingo (Nestor Carbonell)
From the original story notes about this character which I believe was written by Peeg, the guy who played this character:
Known by some for his difficulty in keeping on task, he is a man of great desires and great delusion. He sets out with big plans, but his plans are always missing key steps. He is inconsistent in his allegiances, not because he is fickle, but because he is forgetful.

It doesn't take much time around him to realize he's been out in the sun too long. He's a little nuts, and like most people who are a little nuts, he has no clue. This is showcased in many ways, but most notably by his only true friend, Fredo. Fredo travels with Armand every where, is his confidant, a brilliant guitar player, and only exists in Armand's head.

Though Armand is nuts, he is not without skill. An expert with a lasso, he has tied many knots with rope. However, despite his encounters with many women, he has not once tied a knot with any of them. And much dishonor has been brought to those women.

He and Fredo get by mostly on whatever they are able to steal. With no real home base, they travel from town to town, frequenting saloons of any kind. Armand is not a heavy drinker himself, but will often find Fredo passed out at the end of the night.


The Gray Man (Michael Vartan)
A man of mystery. He is greatly skilled and very loyal. When he rolls into town, the story is set into motion as he is there to protect Carson from an attempt on his life.

I also had a kid character ready to go should a sixth player show up. I can't remember all the details, but this group of five band together and eventually stumble upon a crashed spaceship. Wackiness ensues and it's our heroes between aliens and a group of bandits.

I wish I could have revisited the world. I'd have toned down the sci-fi some and would have done a lot of stealing from Brisco County, Jr.

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