Scion – Chronicle Concept – Locations

One of my flaws as a game master is my description of things. I have had this problem in my writing as well but that’s another story. I tend to rush to the next plot point or piece of dialogue (while we don’t usually call it dialogue in a role playing game it amounts to the same thing) and ignore the mood affecting descriptions of things.

Some of this comes from a desire not to take control of my player’s actions. For example if I say something like, “You approach the house” I am telling them what they are doing. While this is acceptable and is in fact inevitable I have, for some reason, always had issues with it. Thus one of the things I would like to work on is these details.

They say the three rules of advertising are Location, Location, Location and I think to some degree this translates to role playing as well. Give the players an interesting place to explore and you as the storyteller have reduced your burden as they will already be intrigued and involved. I hate to think how many times in the past my players have walked into an abandoned warehouse, for example. I would like to make sure that this doesn’t happen too often in the future.

Because of this I thought it might be good to write down some of the places my players may visit. That way I can have a general description of them to build off of and a place to refer to if I forget exactly what I wanted to do with them. Below are a few of the places that will become important in my Scion game.

One of the ideas I have been toying with when it comes to my Scion game is the idea of the mystical existing in the periphery. In reality we walk through life and miss half of it because so much of it is not of specific interest to us. I like the idea that “magic” is all around but most people fail to see it. In Scion some of this would be explained by Fate and the rest can be explained by the typical human willingness to see what they expect. Still, it makes me wonder how many things we only partially see and then ignore that could potentially be something amazing. While I suppose being a rational person I have to admit that these things are in all likelihood exactly what they appear, in a game like Scion all things are possible.

Abandoned Burger King

Down the street from where I work is an abandoned Burger King. For some reason I find this really interesting. Think about it. How often do we see abandoned fast food places?

The look of the place is both modern and decrepit with the advertisement “2 for 2.22” written on the window, partially scratched off now as though someone started removing it but got bored. Within the Burger King lives Cornelius Carrigan the King of Cartography. Cornelius is a god of maps but at present is a bit lost. Of interest to the players is a map in his possession that indicates where the blade of Heaven’s Will is located.

Tesla’s Building

Tesla has an office on the 33rd floor of the MG Tower. The tower is impressive from the outside but has no other floors save the 3rd (which holds the lobby – essentially the building was constructed partly into a hill) and the 33rd. The other floors are empty and the elevator only has a button for the 33rd and the 3rd. If a player managed to get into the other floors they would find barren generic office space, created as though from the generic images of offices that inhabit the populace.

In the lobby there is a security guard. He wears a stark white uniform and a vibrant smile but has no name tag or identification (or in fact, name). Tesla’s office is neat and organized. There is a large glass door that leads to a pigeon roost.

Mac’s Emporium of the Bizarre and Peculiar

Mac’s Emporium is run by a man named Jake Cummings as “Mac” has actually been dead for a number of years. This fact is well known to the locals and anyone else that stops long enough to really check the place out, since one of the “attractions” is an urn which holds the ashes of Mac “The Mage” Johnson, the original proprietor.

Most attractions are of little interest and are very similar to the kinds of things for which P.T. Barnum was famous. The hilt of Heaven’s Will is kept on display here, heralded as “Excaliber: The Sword from the Stone” (incorrect, of course, on many levels). It bears mentioning that Fate will not act kindly on those who attempt to remove the sword’s hilt.

The Alley Divine

The Alley Divine is a party house to the gods, located down a dark alley in Chicago. For some reason no one ever goes down the alley, unless they are looking for a party house. Inside the house all sorts of “interesting” events are constantly taking place.

The grounds are generally considered to be a place of mutual respect and tolerance among the pantheons and few are willing to start trouble there. The house was opened by Dionysus years ago and while he is still considered the “owner” he has not been around for some time. The manager of the establishment is a Scion of his named William Grant. William runs the place as his own private kingdom but always does his best to make certain his patrons are enjoying themselves. Occasionally mortals manage to find their way into the Alley and William will give them the time of their lives. Many of these mortals spend the rest of their existence longing to find the Alley again, never truly being happy with the doldrums they face every day after having touched such a godly place.

The Farm

Fields lying fallow paired with well-kept and secure barns mark this odd place. Mr. Agent (a mysterious figure that will need to be fully explained in another post) runs some form of experiments here. While he himself is only occasionally present, a number of pseudo-government-scientists are present on the farm at all times. Fate will likely cause the players to stumble upon this farm before too long. (More information to come.)