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Elven Sky Pirates, or Teamwork Makes The Dream Work

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Captain Marge

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« on: (16:27:29/06-21-18) »
Greetings, chummers!

We have a long-time gaming group that is scattered geographically (generally we gather and play via GChat or Roll20), but once a year we all travel to a game convention to get around a table and roll some dice in person. For the last decade or so it's been GenCon, but with the ridiculous crowds and skyrocketing prices this year we decided to switch it up and attend Origins instead. For the last three years we'd been playing the all-troll Russian metal band Trolling Thunder (some of you may have heard of the mayhem), but a new season in Neo-Tokyo demanded the creation of a new team. In keeping with our usual standard of ridiculousness we knew we wanted to do something with a strong, memorable theme and after perhaps several too many cocktails settled on the idea of doing a group of Elven Sky Pirates.

Enter... The Pirates of Piz'zazz (jazz hands!)

Similar to Trolling Thunder, we knew we wanted to do a group lifestyle/calendar/what-have-you which in certain cases can be challenging for individual players, but as we all only every play the characters once a year when we're all together at a convention it suits us all rather well and keeps the team in step. While the individual trolls from our previous runner team had a wide range of qualities and characteristics making them all fairly individualist (other than being trolls, of course), we thought it would help the team theme even more if we all took several matching characterizations so everyone right out of the gate started with some matching Negative Qualities, specifically:

Distinctive Style: Sky Pirate, to represent the fact that our characters all speak with a terrible pirate brogue and dress in a flamboyant manner. Lots of leather, silk, buckles and feathers. Now that I've written it out it sounds like we may also blend in well on the BDSM scene - We assume it stands for Broadsides, Deadlights, Scuppers and Mizzenmasts.

Phobia Uncommon (Moderate): The Floor Is Lava, whis is mostly a comedic thing for inter-team rivalries. As a group, the team spends 90% of their time aboard airships, flying around on the backs of drones and swinging around by cables and ropes. We have a standing joke among the team that the first player whose character touches the ground has to buy the first round of drinks in real life that evening! In practice, the roll to overcome the phobia proved to be pretty easy, though in one game my character blew the roll and was down a dice for having a bad case of "land legs". I also had to buy the drinks! :)

And finally Poor Self Control: Thrill Seeker, which suits our play style very well - As a group we always love to take the challenging, flamboyant, dangerous and usually silly path, so we naturally roleplay out that negative quality as well.

Individually we also took some further negative qualities specific to our characters, though Addiction: Rum seemed to be pretty popular... From a naming convention we thought it would be amusing if we all had thoroughly ridiculous and over-the-top nigh-unpronounceable names, which were shortened to nicknames at odds with our character's genders. The disclaimer being "Hey, 'Candi' is a very butch nickname in the Elven tongue, I don't see what's so funny about it." Hah!

The team build turned out as follows:

Mar'je'thal'lion'eth'yrr'lliss'yan aka "Captain Marge" - Face/Utility Mage
Played by:    Joel Moon

The nominal leader of the crew, Captain Marge claims captaincy by virtue of having the most apostrophes in his name as well as having the biggest hat. He is by far the least lethal member of the group, and is constantly razzed by the rest of the crew about his general lack of dangerous-ness. As a utility mage however, he is always useful in helping control the flow of combat by locking down adversaries and manipulating the surroundings in the most advantageous manner possible with his array of Manipulation and Illusion spells. His silver tongue and roguish good looks have gotten the group out of (and occasionally into) a great deal of trouble.

Lor'Ath'eon'd'trin'ser'eee aka “Lori” - Pod Rigger
Played by:    Michael Van Oosten

The first of two riggers that help the crew run all the requisite flying machines, Lori presents as a female drone anthroform while 'her' consciousness resides in an armored sim-tank either aboard the Frohliche Roger or nearby in the smaller helicopter. Generally speaking Lori is the second utility character, who handles a lot of the security, forgery and so forth, as well as being generally unsettling and off-putting - Keeping our opponents on the back foot!

Zateg'anpatha'nar'lyss'ba'ad the 3rd aka “Tegan” - Combat Mage
Played by: Andrew Domaszek

Tegan is the archetypal combat mage of the group, slinging the more obvious loud and pyrotechnic spells, and coming up with uses for them that the standard runner would find both terrible and terrifying. Phenomenal cosmic power! ...And the occasional migraine and nosebleed from the mystic feedback.

Ch’Uckfen’arze’Dem’pna’zedlamma’Jyrst aka “Chuck” - Combat Monster
Played by:    MJ Tom

The pirate lady Chuck is the eyes and ears of the crew, and her exceptional perceptive abilities have helped the crew spot trouble from miles away (and generally rush towards it laughing). She has also proved to be the most spectacularly deadly member of the crew, wielding her mono-filament whip to terrifying effect. In one of the earliest missions, she nonchalantly ripped a speedboat in twain in a cataclysm of electricity and fire, leading to the byline "Don't f$%k with Chuck."

Slir’yini’as Sanf’lrin’ii Fen’gao aka “Sally” - Medic
Played by: Greg Peel

One rarely sees a fat elf, but Sally more than makes up for it. Hailing from the Samoan islands, Sally is the team's doctor and meat shield - A somewhat odd combination, but as elves go he's by far the most robust of the crew. While he may be ribbed for his size, it is universally agreed that without his occasionally not-so-tender ministrations, the crew would be long dead already...

Hell'gynyl'oroth'll'baryth'nn aka “Helga” - Drone Rigger
Played by:    Chris Holt

The second rigger of the team, Helga is responsible for all the smaller drones and maintains the fleet of "sky skiffs", modified Dobermans designed to be ridden by the pirate crew on their way to and from the mother ship. He also provides protection and oversight for the drone fleet, and without him the whole group would be relegated to walking around on the (ugh) ground.   

Can’Di’Thu’Fara’He’Mathu’ri aka “Candi” - Technomancer
Played by:    Kyle Steppe

The final member of the crew is Candi, the Technomancer, er, I mean, totally legitimate decker who totally doesn't use magic to do any matrix work. Candi is the second protection and oversight member of the crew, helping ensure integrity of all the technological devices and vehicles the team relies on. He's also responsible for many of the more devious and debilitating tricks played on the crew's adversaries, turning their technology against them in horrible and often amusing ways.

The crew has made the run through the first season of the Neo-Tokyo setting and had an absolute blast (in certain missions, literally), and have made a number of new friends and allies, as well as baffling and disconcerting many others. We look forward to Origin's next year, where we'll again hoist the black flag, and plummet from the skies in search of booty and booze! For now, we'll leave you with the first couple stanzas of the theme song for the Pirates of Piz'zazz:

Oooooooooooh...
We're the Pirates of Piz'zazz
Six dandy pirate lads
And the pirate lady Chuck
With whom you really shouldn't f$%K

Yes we're wild and crazy guys
just careening through the skies
Mostly our fighting skills are naff
But Chuck'll cut ya right in half!
Captain Marge - Captain of the Pirates of Piz'zazz
Dmitri Kolnikov - Lead Singer of Trolling Thunder (retired)

Slamm-O!

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« Reply #1 on: (18:10:24/06-21-18) »
Beautiful work ! Absolutely hilarious.

Ride around on Doberman drones ?!

Mess with the best.  Die like the rest !

Captain Marge

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« Reply #2 on: (20:25:04/06-21-18) »
Cheers! It's been great fun!

I believe that's the name of the chassis the skiffs are based on - I'm not as up on the drone stuff, I have crew for that. Hah! The modified drones are set up with gecko-tape, foot loops and control panels - sort of akin to the Dark Eldar Helion idea from 40k (albeit with more frivolity and less murder). With the exception of our Samoan, all of us are well under a hundred pounds (some much less due to magical talents/shenanigans). As I understand it, the build is all kosher albeit silly, dangerous to the rider, and reasonably easily compromised.

There's a reason we all also took Free Fall and any magical skills/talents applicable for surviving falling off or leaping free from a bricked sky skiff.

"You win again, gravityyyyyyyyy!"
Captain Marge - Captain of the Pirates of Piz'zazz
Dmitri Kolnikov - Lead Singer of Trolling Thunder (retired)

tequila

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« Reply #3 on: (07:22:59/06-22-18) »
I got some games in with a few of the pirates at Origins and they were really a blast to play with!
#thistasergoesto11

Quote from: Tarislar
ArmTech MGL-12: Nothing says love like a 3 round burst of HE Grenade to hit something for 32P
Nuff said.  :-X

Slamm-O!

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« Reply #4 on: (18:18:25/06-23-18) »
Hah.  Now I need a breakdown of the drones.  Those sound fun to play with. 
Mess with the best.  Die like the rest !

Tai-Pan

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« Reply #5 on: (16:19:22/07-02-18) »
Greetings, chummers!

We have a long-time gaming group that is scattered geographically (generally we gather and play via GChat or Roll20), but once a year we all travel to a game convention to get around a table and roll some dice in person. For the last decade or so it's been GenCon, but with the ridiculous crowds and skyrocketing prices this year we decided to switch it up and attend Origins instead.

Having played with you folks the last few years at gencon, the first I met you was the assemblage of horribly specific specialists (I was sold when the coolers came out for organ harvesting,) this saddens me a bit not nearly as much as my skipping all the conventions this year.
Troll bioadept with a throwing knife and a lube grenade looking for a good time.

Anatoly Trolling Thunder

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« Reply #6 on: (14:29:02/06-06-19) »
In response to the query about which drones we use for the Sky Skiffs, we use the Cyberspace Designs Dalmatian (a large VTOL drone that is the size of a hang glider, but folds up into the size of a riding mower).  To turn it into a Sky Skiff, we add a pair of handle bars (manual controls) and some Gecko tape.  For the cowardly, there's a clip harness.