Concrete Cow 10 games

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The following games will be offered at the Concrete Cow 10 convention on 20 March 2010. If you have something you'd like to offer, please email concrete-cow-owner@yahoogroups.com. See the Concrete Cow 09.5 games page for what was on offer last time.

Game Slots

To keep some sense of organisation about the day (ha!), this is the approximate timetable for the day.

Doors open 9.00am
Morning games 10.00am - 1.30pm
Afternoon games   2.30pm - 6.30pm
Evening games 7.30pm - 11.00pm
Close 11.00pm

At previous Concrete Cows, the morning slot often has an excess of games, the afternoon slot is OK, and the evening slot has very few. You may want to bear that in mind when you're deciding when to offer your game.

Allocating games to players is by sign-up sheets on the day, on a first-come-first-served basis. You can download blank sign-up sheets as sign-up sheet (MS Word) or sign-up sheet (PDF).

Note that, depending on circumstances, not all of these games may run on the day.

Guest of Honour games

Umläut: Game of Metal

Heavy Metal. The very name itself drips with power, testosterone and hairspray. Warriors on the stage of history, wielding their axes and mics as they do battle for glory! Trusts are forged and betrayed, mighty empires rise and fall. Ultimately, the only truth worth living for is Metal.

Long of hair and tight of pants, you join the ranks of Metal in your quest for babes, booze and glory. Try to Make It Big and hunt down an elusive record contract.

These are the heroes of an age.

This is their story.

Umläut: Game of Metal is a storytelling game which gives each player the chance to create and control their own Heavy Metal band. Simple mechanics let you chart their career as they rehearse, play gigs, fight among themselves and pull crazy publicity stunts. Will you make it big, or are your records destined to languish in the discount bin of obscurity? Can you hold your band together when the going is rough, or will you self destruct in a drug-fuelled clash of egos?

The bands, and their trials and tribulations, will be created during the session.

Offered by Rich Stokes

Hot War: the Masquerade

This is what you want... This is what you get

It's 1984, and in London...

Grant has just been given responsibility for the steady stream of blood from an NHS supply centre, but several of the city's kindred would love to see him fail...

Maria wants to keep her gaggle of homeless and direction-less waifs and strays safe from harm, but there are forces massing in the dark who need vessels...

Julia needs all her time and attention to keep her girls in line to hit this month's targets, but her Sire has an important task he wants her to perform...

Alfred is certain that the last few things he needs to complete an important ritual are nearly in his grasp, but a strange visitor in his shop has other ideas...

System: Hot War

Setting: Vampire: the Masquerade

A fresh look at an old favourite. This scenario fuses White Wolf's Vampire: the Masquerade setting with Contested Ground Studio's excellent Hot War system. This game tackles some dark themes and is not suitable for younger or immature players.

For 4 players.

Offered by Rich Stokes

Other games

(Please add games in alphabetical order)

Call of Cthulhu

A Knell That Summons Thee

May 1645, and the English Civil War is reaching a climax. In the rural North Norfolk village of Edgefield, word has it that the forces of the Crown are heading from the North and that their homes are about to become the front line in the conflict. As the Parliamentarian forces set up camp on the outskirts of the village, and battle could just be hours away, a pillar of the community runs out into the night, right towards the oncoming enemy...

Offered by Matt Sanderson
4-6 players
Evening slot

Waiting for the Hurricane

September 9th, 1960. Key West, Florida, braces itself for the impact of Hurricane Donna. Most of the small city has made a run for the mainland, hoping to avoid the storm, or at least find somewhere safe to hide. Still in Key West, some people can't leave. Business is unfinished; time is short; forces are moving through the deserted city streets; and someone can't wait for the hurricane to arrive...

Offered by Matt Sanderson
4-6 players
Morning slot

Dead of Night

Cold Fusion

Cutting edge technology is being employed in a power plant in Northern Canada, but the political landscape has changed since its inception, and the new Minister with responsibility for it wants to see what the previous administration spent over $500 million on. The Plant Manager and Lead Researcher must justify their work, while the Chief of Security attempts to keep the press away from sensitive areas...

A minor accident during the official visit escalates into an unearthly disaster, as plant technicians and visitors alike start transforming into something else and begin to hunt down those who are still fully human...

A game of chilling horror for six ice-cool players.

Offered by James Mullen
3-6 players
Evening slot

Unhallowed

In the war between good and evil, good lost.

Now you are amongst the last remaining humans on earth, hunted everywhere you turn by the legions of Hell. What hope can there be when hope itself is dead and buried?

Offered by Andrew Kenrick
5 players
Morning slot

Esoterrorists

The Love of Money

Amsterdam, Modern Day. In the ever present campaign against the Esoterrorists, the Ordo Veritatis has lost one of their own. Amidst the very real fear that he could very well have turned to and embraced the Esoterrorist threat, a suspicious eye falls upon the dead man's cell. If he went rouge, might they follow in his footsteps. Given a chance to redeem themselves in the eyes of their superiors, the cell is dispatched to find out exactly what happened to their friend. His mission was clear: follow the money, follow it right back up the chain to the heart of the Esoterror movement, where the Love of Money really is the root of all evil.

Offered by Matt Sanderson
4-6 players
Afternoon slot

GURPS

Charms to Soothe

They said you had a talent, that you were smart enough and fit enough and enough of a bastard that you could serve your country in a way most people never even get to hear about. And you did want to serve your country, didn't you? So you found yourself on the front line of a war that most people simply wouldn't believe was possible, working for a secret organisation tasked with defending the UK from whatever supernatural threat faces it. (A tie-in to the novels of David Devereux)

Offered by Roger Burton West
5 players

Europe on Mars

With the Chinese taking the lead on Mars, and the Americans playing catch-up, well, the EU mostly leaves them to it. But we have citizens here, and the embassy in Port Lowell employs you to assist them when they need it. Sometimes there are troubles to shoot, fights to stop, treaties to negotiate, or mysteries to solve, and you're transhuman enough to handle all that.

Offered by Phil Masters

The Four Cats and Young Claus

In a world of ghosts and fairies, muskets and cannon, trolls and witches, cats can of course be wise creatures, aware of the invisible world - although when that awareness tells them that All Is Not Well, not all of those lumbering humans will listen...

Offered by Phil Masters

(NB: Phil will only run one of these GURPS games, depending on interest. Contact him to express a preference.)

Hot War

Things Fall Apart

London. Winter. 1963. It is a year since the Cold War went hot, unleashing not just nuclear bombs, but the products of secret weapons programmes from the fringes of science. The men and women of the Special Situations Group represent the city's last line of defence against political chaos and the threat of twisted technology.

Rumours are spreading that the Soviet forces are using a terrifying new weapon on London's civilians, a weapon capable of wiping out entire communities. Details are scarce, though, and the panic caused by the rumours is starting to cause as much damage as any weapon could hope to. Can your SSG field team get to the truth when asking questions seems to be as dangerous as the threat itself?

Weird science, betrayal and the collapse of civilisation, for four adults.

Offered by Scott Dorward
4 players
Evening slot

Kagematsu

Kagematsu takes place in Japan, 1572, in and around a small unnamed village. This period was known as the Onin no Ran, and it was a time of internal strife. Most of the village’s men have gone off to war, leaving the women, children, elderly, and infirm to fend for themselves. Now a dangerous threat casts its shadow over the village, and without a defender, its people are almost certainly doomed.

Enter Kagematsu, a wayward samurai fleeing a troubled past. Here is a defender, if only he can be swayed from his course. So it is that several young women conspire among themselves to win his affections...

Kagematsu is a fast paced game for 3 to 6 players - one of whom must be a woman - with quick scenes that plays out in one session.

Offered by Indy Pete

Mouse Guard

I'll have vanilla Mouse Guard in my bag that I'll run on demand, if there is such a thing as ravening demand to play a mouse with a sword.

Offered by Indy Pete

Mythic Russia

Death and Taxes

The elected Prince of Novgorod has just been killed, ripped apart by Perun's Holy Bear while in the World of Magic to assert is authority of the city.

Of course, none of the PCs had any part in his death.

The city needs to appoint a new Prince before the tax collector from Moscow turns up and makes everyone's life a misery.

Of course, none of the PCs wants to become the new Prince.

Getting there involves treachery, magic, political machinations, religious conflicts, giant clockwork soldiers and a very angry bear.

Offered by Neil Smith, written by Scott Dorward and Neil Smith
Afternoon slot
5 players

Ordinary Angels

Dead Beat

Lost souls, demonic pimps and a date with the Devil. All in a day's work when it's your turn on the night shift.

Offered by Andrew Kenrick

Over the Edge

Is This Seat Taken?

At one of the hottest spots in Al Amarja’s nightlife, an agent seeks out their contact in order to transfer a package, unaware that agents of an opposing conspiracy are watching and waiting to intercept the exchange... This being The Edge, however, things are nowhere near that simple. A game of secrecy, betrayal, confusion, large crowds and speed dating for up to 8 players, this will involve lots of standing as I will insure that there are fewer seats than players! Choosing whether to sit or stand are vital parts of the game and affect what your character can do.

A character driven Over the Edge game for players who enjoy getting into role.

Offered by James Mullen
Afternoon slot
6-8 players

Quickies

Two games that are fast enough that both of them can be played within 3-4 hours...

Pyramid

A tactical pulp adventure about a team of Victorianesque explorers searching a newly unearthed tomb in the hunt for the treasures guarded within... players take turns to perform simple actions, but you also represent the spirit of the Pharaoh to the player on your left!

When Bad Things Happen to Good Magicians

Think of this as what happens when the Fellowship of the Ring escape the Mines of Moria and, instead of continuing with their quest, try to decide who is to blame for Gandalf falling to his death... by going on the Jerry Springer show. The PCs are stereotypical heroes who have returned from their latest quest in shame and must now face accusations in the Royal Court of Public Opinion. A game of bidding and passing the buck.

Offered by James Mullen
Morning slot
Up to 4 players

Ribbon Drive

We tell stories about letting go on the open road

Ribbon Drive is a game about telling the story of a group of people on a road trip. It's about deciding who they are, what they want and then discovering if they get it or not. The game is GMless with everyone taking one of the characters on the road trip, it is focused sharply on telling the stories with each player taking turns in framing scenes along the way and moving the story along, or bringing in obstacles that may detour it off in unforseen directions.

The game is based around the mix tapes that get played in the stereo while on the open road. Every player can bring along their own themed mix CD, I'll have a bunch with me too, and we randomly choose one to start the game going. We'll listen to the first two songs and use them to generate the road trip and the characters that are on it. From there the game plays with the CDs making the soundtrack in the background, sometimes this comes to the fore, sometimes you barely realise it's there, but you'll be surprised how big a difference it has on the game.

The game is very mechanics light but also manages to shine the spotlight on the wants and needs of the characters within it. What rules there are are easy to learn and often barely needed.

If you want to bring along a themed mix CD, feel free. It should be at least 40 minutes long and will need to play on a normal CD player. Please bring along a copy of the lyrics for the first 2 tracks on the compilation.

Offered by Mik Reed
4 players, plus Mik
Afternoon slot

Shadowrun

Setting Britain

Mr Johnson wants a technology Acquisition job done, standard fare but these are the Shadows of Britain where guns have never been very popular with the authorities and a slightly gentler touch may be in order.

(Scenario from this year's Conception)

Sorcerer

Mad Love: A Scientific Romance

Mad scientists need love too.

Sure, you can create an army of cloned newt/human hybrids and conquer Belgium. Or maybe you can build a giant steam-powered exoskeleton that can crush tanks in its huge metal hands. The effervescent synaptic-regulation formulation you added to the reservoir has the residents of your home town chanting glory to your name with every step they take. But does any of this make you truly happy?

The more the voices in your head drive you to greater and more terrible glory, the more you are aware of the dark, cold hole where your heart should be. You're missing someone to complete you, someone who can fill the emptiness and still the voices, someone who can slow the march to your otherwise inevitable self-destruction.

And maybe this time you won't have to drill a tiny hole in their head to make it work.

Madness, horror and romance, for four adults.

Offered by Scott Dorward
4 players
Afternoon slot


Warhammer (3ed)

Privistock

The characters are given the job of investigating the town of Privistock, which seems to have become lost. It is not on many maps and this has sparked the interest of the Travellers Guild in Altdorf. As to why it seems to be being removed...?

Offered by Sean Connors
Morning Slot

Indie Game demos

If you haven't already, now's your chance to have a quick try of some of those newfangled hippie indie games. I'll be offering 15-minute demos of a few games in the cracks between the main gaming sessions. If you like what you see, you should be able to pick up the book from those nice people at the Leisure Games stall.

I should be able to offer demos of:

  • Cold City (The Allies 'co-operate' in 1950 Berlin to clear up after the Nazi's twisted technology)
  • Covenant (The Apocalypse your cult leader promised didn't happen. Now what?)
  • Dogs in the Vineyard (almost-Mormon paladin gunslingers in a Wild West that never was)
  • Don't Rest Your Head (surreal modern horror)
  • Hot War (post-apocalyptic 1963 London)
  • Grey Ranks (child soldiers in the Warsaw Uprising of 1944)
  • Spirit of the Century (1920s pulp)
  • The Shadow of Yesterday (pulpy fantasy)
  • Thou Art But A Warrior (Islamic warriors trying to prevent the Spanish Reconquista; a Polaris variant)
Offered by Neil Smith