Monday, September 14, 2015

Sky High: It was the finest, fanciest Science Fair anybody's ever seen.

We had this session about two weeks ago. Lily wanted to co-blog the account of the session, so here it is. Her comments are in italics.

Yeah I did!

We open directly after our last session. At Doctor Mordred’s invitation, Doctor Doom will be a special guest judge at the school science fair, and if our heroes can scan Doom’s armor, they will be able to replicate its power source, thereby acquiring one of the three components they need to repair the Ewok ship.

The title of the post is a reference to the Trout Fishing in America song.

Before the fair starts, Summer talks to Amy about Winter. Ever since their parents vanished Winter had always been mean to other kids, but very protective towards Summer. She’d been distant after the events in the museum, and now she’s taking Dr. Mordred’s special classes, and basically ignoring Summer. Just this morning, she said she had to talk to Summer about something “very important”, but Summer is still upset, and isn’t sure if she wants to talk. Amy advised her to talk to her sister. The most interesting part of this was that immediately after she said that, Lily started second guessing her choice. I explained that there was no right answer, or even a best answer, and she could do whatever she wanted.

I had the right answer.

The heroes head out to the gym and the science fair opens with a brief speech by Vice Principal Hodor “We have called those who participate in science fairs geeks and nerds. We are right. But this year, we have a participant who may make science cool.” He then hurries out of the room with his Chihuahuas yapping behind him. Asami, is like “All right, that was weird. Allow me to introduce my fellow judges.”

Asami rocks so hard. 

She does, and there are five.
  • Asami Sato – Assistant Amy Midnight
  • Doctor Doom – Assistant Zod
  • Lucy, Sr four time second place winner of the Sky High science fair. (Lucy Sr. is our cross-eyed cat in real life. In the game, she has heat vision, but it always comes out at weird angles because she’s googley eyed.)
  • Neil, four time winner of the Sky High science fair. He’s greeted by crazy cheers. Even Zod claps for Neil, though he’s careful not to let anyone see him. Neil gives a thumbs up to little brother.
  • Leonardo DaVinci – Guest Judge – tiebreaker.
Leonardo DaVinci only comes in if worse comes to worst.

Neil comes over to congratulate Zod and he’s got good news of his own. If he gets Doom to sign his letter of recommendation, he’s a lock for an internship at the Baxter Building.

The heroes then go around to the convention and interact with the participants. We went kitchen sink and threw in everybody who was even slightly applicable.

Gizmo, from the H.I.V.E. was grouped with the Teen Titans. He was quite proud of his anti-gravity machine, and proclaimed it would revolutionize everything. Cyborg interrupted him and pointed out that the entire school they were on floats through anti-gravity.  Gizmo shoots back with “Oh, yeah, what do you have?”

Cyborg unveils his “refrigerating machine”, a.k.a a refrigerator.  DaVinci is profoundly impressed . “It’ll revolutionize everything!” Asami and Amy exchange looks.  We continue the gag of DaVinci being impressed by entirely mundane technology throughout the session.

Beast Boy had “ Stuff I found between my toes”,  Robin had his 16 Bit training simulation,
Starfire had “A study in linguistic paradigms: Challenges and opportunities in adapting Tamaranian syntax to a majority English speaking environment, with particular emphasis on Lexeme-based morphology”, and Raven’s project was titled “I am sad, so very, very sad.” It was black Nail polish on a Smiths album, and she dotted all I’s with little skulls.  When she saw the PCs, she promptly abandoned it and said “Come on, Zod, let’s make fun of the geeks”.

Zod’s scanner went off periodically, indicating that it was time to scan Doom, except Doom kept ordering him on errands. He tells Zod to get him a half-caf, soy milk vegan mocha latte with minimal foam, with Doom’s face drawn in the foam. Zod failed his intelligence roll when it came time to order, and thought Doom wanted a pumpkin spice latte. Doom does a spit take when he takes a sip.

Anne (of AnneDroids) and Anakin Skywalker were sitting next to each other, and both answered whenever anyone said “Annie.” Doom tried to melt down C-3P0, but the heroes convince him not to. Doom sends Zod to Reddit to downvote all of Reed Richards’ posts and to steal and repost an image of a kitten that Richards had posted.

A very large student with a nametag that reads “Shmice Schminipal Schmodor” rushes into the room and quickly sets up his display about teaching his Chihuahuas how to spin. The heroes exchanges glances and hurry on past. From across the room, Doctor Doom says “Doom wearies of perpetual motion machines!”

Doom sends Zod on an errand to make sure that the Doombots are taping his soap operas in the AV room. Zod convinces Raven to go in his place. She goes, and sees the best Doctor Doom poster of all time.

The heroes talk with a couple more participants. We had a fictionalized version of Lily with her own award-winning science fair project.

Ash Ketchum was there with a Starwhal he had captured in his Pok├ęBall He demonstrated it for Zod…by releasing it. “Starwhal! Face slash! Starwhal, testicle slash! Starwhal, go for the eyes! THE EYES!” Zod manages to subdue it, and Amy distracts Ash allowing them to stick the thing back in its prison. Ash is like “So, do I win the science fair?”

Okay, that was like the best scene in the science fair.

President Dog and Lucy Junior have spots right next to each other. President Dog invented the poop funnel (we have to keep the dog in our house away from the cats’ litterbox, otherwise she’ll gorge herself and become sick. Thus this picture)
 and communicates through calligraphy. He has wonderful penmanship.

Lucy Junior had a voice synthesizer, which she used to discuss her invention of the automatic door butler. She and President Dog got in a fight, with hissing and barking, but then it turned into making out, and our heroes hastened on their way. Doom sent Zod out for Latverian caviar. 
While we were trying to figure out where to find the caviar also had a throwaway exchange about Amy's Aunt Girtha.
Zod's player: The caviar is probably someplace cold, like a refrigerator.
Lily: Aunt Girtha has eight refrigerators. (Beat) (Sheepishly) She likes to eat.
Me: And she likes to kill transients and freeze their bodies.
Lily: What?
Me: Never mind. Where are you looking for that caviar?

Zod retrieves it, and Doom proclaims, “Doom does not feed himself! Feed Doom like a baby bird!” Zod does so. “Open wide, here comes the airplane.” “Doom does not want a plane! Doom wants the Fantasticar!” *Sigh* “Here comes the Fantasticar!” “Excellent!” (Powering up gauntlet blaster) “Doom shoots down the Fantasticar!”

Asami sees Franklin Richards and H.E.R.B.I.E. Franklin claims that he built H.E.R.B.I.E. and H.E.R.B.I.E. denies it. Asami doesn’t care; she just wants to keep Doom away before there is an incident.  Amy agrees to babysit Franklin Richards in exchange for his cooperation in leaving the gym as soon as possible, and Zod focuses Doom’s attention away through careful positioning of the caviar spoon.

Doom assigns Zod the task of sockpuppeting support for Doom on the Baxter Building forums. Zod dutifully created accounts Doomlover17 through 34.

Other participants include Hiro from Big Hero Six, Young Syndrome from the Incredibles, Fio Piccolo and her air pirate cheering section from Porco Rosso, Brainiac 5 with a force field belt and flight ring and Belle from Beauty and the Beast. She has her father’s wood cutting machine from the movie.  She’s constantly trying to break into song. Doom tries to silence her, but secretly wants to sing along. 
Zod asks Doom to sign Neil’s letter of recommendation, and he reads it and signs it. “Yes, let this young man serve as Doom’s herald in the cursed Baxter Building!”

We go into voting. After some discussion the prize is awarded to Lucy Junior. Doom’s smartphone buzzes, and he sees an email that his account has been suspended at the Baxter building forums because a number of suspicious account signups all originated from the same IP address he was using. He cuffs Zod with his gauntlet, and looks like he’s about to do more. Neil intervenes and sticks up for Zod. Doom backs down, but takes the letter of recommendation and rips it up.

After that, Lucy comes up and accepts the trophy full of tuna. Doctor Mordred, who has a more ostentatious costume every time he appears, heads up and places his hands warmly on Neil’s shoulders. His eyes glow orange, his hands glow orange, and then Neil’s eyes flare with the same orange glow. The glow is only visible to heroes. We end on that note.

We all really enjoyed the session. I think it was the best game of the campaign so far. I forget who said it first, but I remember reading that comic books that people really remember are the ones with a lot of sitting around and talking. (I always think of X-Factor #87 when somebody references this, the issue where the team goes to Doc Samson for therapy after a mission.) This game felt like one of those issues. We had some one-off silliness, running gags, we advanced our short term goals and the main story too. I can’t think of what more I would want out of a game.

Lily: I didn't write enough. Type a bunch of letters after lily!!! .;.fvhkrfjhbkutfhbugvygbh type type typety type type gfhgfjhjvdghvgfdghjcfgvfhcvgbnvhv hjfcvjhgvjhghvhchgvjhgchgc, am I right?jbghjbdfjh gdjfhgbfhdjb jhdb gj,hbsgdjh dbgfdb g  SSSSSSSSSSSTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWHHHHHHHHHHHHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss!!!!Aw, yeah ma peeps!(I don't really talk like that.)

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