Every Monday the group comes together at a very secret location. Their task: Collate a never ending stream of green boxes into a coherent collection. Each file is played out as a one shot with throwaway PCs as specified in the green box's history. Then they write a report, give a recommendation, and hand the file off to more competent people they do not know.
In context an image forms that implies the Cult of Transcendence driving mankind insane enough to make a play for a place at Azathoth's court, but that isn't important. It could be any end of the world.
The reveal is that it already happened
The question is how to bring it all together. How to handle the recommendations the players make. When to play an actual mission with the primary PCs. What would work well in general.
The structure is based on Final Revelation.
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Well, if you look at each of the component Final Revelation adventures, each 'contributes' slightly towards the twist, though in a way that the GM might be the only one to fully appreciate.
I think what you could do is take the November 12 1937 thing repeated over and over again? Perhaps this recurrent date is when the play was performed or when it was drafted? It's a good lead - having the date repeat over and over shows its importance.
>It could be any end of the world.
No, no it couldn't. You need to be quite sure WHAT has happened so that you can place relevant and appropriate hints towards that end.
So imagine this is a Hastur apocalypse. You need to presage that with certain imagery that makes sense after the fact; a certain character was always wearing a yellow tie; recurring mask/facial disfigurement imagery; lakes as a common location; the frequent invoking of plays and other theatrical/dramatic workings as plot elements.
Anon is right, you need plans not possibilities.
Here's an idea, pick a date and have the players think its coming up, but really its already gone by, that was the start of the apocalypse
Right. In Final Revelation the apocalypse is
Shub Niggurath, so they're all about this fecundity of life; the Colour in Dying is drawn to the earth by Shub; the birds in Watchers are her freak-children; in Dance In The Blood the players are the not-freak kids and Rending Box involves literally delving inside her
That said, Final Revelation was always a bit disjointed because the frame narrative came LATER. It was four scenarios (three really good ones and The Rending Box) that they then decided needed some common element or theme to justify publishing together, which is where the Friday Group element comes in.
STARTING at the frame narrative gives you the opportunity to make the whole more cohesive, but you should be careful to make sure the through-line is buried nice and deep.
Here's how I'd structure it (when I say "Frame X" I mean the Friday Group esque meta-level and when I say "nested" I mean the scenarios like Dance, Dying or Watchers):
Frame Session 1: Open with coming to the Green Box. They get an "after action report" on a mythos artifact or something like that found there. This "after action report" is, of course, Nested Story 1.
Nested Story 1 should play out fairly straight and be fairly far back in the past. It should have a fairly definitive END, but leave loose ends for the Frame Investigators to pick up on; the loose end should link back to the "real" world one way or another.
Frame Session 2: Having fed intel gleaned from Nested Story 1 into their databases, the Frame Characters kick in some doors, bust some heads and generally appear to be doing some shit. They take an artifact from whoever they just door-kick-head-busted to a green box for collation only to discover that these guys were former DG - Group, not Program, the guys who never came in from the cold. A little blue-on-blue should leave a bad taste in your mouth, but no time to dwell, it's Nested Story 2!
Nested Story 2 should be less obviously relevant to DG's interest etc and the artifact that triggers it should be similarly not-obvious; not a military after action report or spy debriefing, something more mundane or obscure. Perhaps it takes the form of the minutes from a symposium of Yugoslavian civil engineers, or the employee records of a paper company in the Midwest. Nested Story 2 should refer back to, but absolutely sever any and all loose ends from, Nested Story 1 - not resolve, not tie up. Sever. The PCs that survived? Confirmed dead. That mission they were on? Never happened. But at the end of it, there's still this evidence that Bad Shit is around the corner, that someone's trying to make the Stars Come Right.
Final Revelation is short; but this could be endless.
What do I mean go on forever? Simple. Your Frame Narrative DG guys are trapped in this endless recursion "forest of mirrors" that spy fiction loves so much, taken to existential, absurdist extreme. The conspiracy goes so deep that there's no bottom, always deeper to delve and no "real" progress ever happens. Eventually they might even loop and find themselves kicking down the door A again to pick up.. the same thing they picked up last time they kicked down door A. They're stealing from one green box to take the artifact to another green box, only to turn back around and break into THAT green box. The cult they smash in session 3 was the DG friendly cell in session 1. Perhaps they even come to suspect themselves of being double agents.
This is what their apocalypse is for DG; a constant recursion of infighting and self-destruction, unable to trust each other.
Start with a central idea and mindmap it, riff and associate. Scatter these ideas through time with established link. For this set-up, that central idea is The Apocalypse (whatever that means for OP). Each idea connected to the apocalypse and feeds back into it, that's your Nested Session; the Frame Sessions are those links to each other through time, the dotted line that connects A to B
>post my idea
>someone suggests making a new thread
>wake up to ind this
Sometmes, /tg/, I really love you
This is definitely true. I don't think I'd want to play up the dates too much. With the idea of asking the players to decide on a coure of action, they may well consider the dates more often and give the game away too soon.
Got it. My vagueness on that front was because I hadn't really gotten that far. My working theory so far is that the linking threat is the Cult of Transcendence and Azathoth (and Nyarlathotep, obviously). Having Nyarlathotep appearing in various guises throughout and sometimes addressing the player characters regardless of whether they're playing the "real" characters or their flashback characters might be a little much.
This is definitely my worry. Got to keep player's guessing whether there is a through-line or whether there's simply nothing at the bottom of this horrible well, and whether they'd have been better off leaving well alone.
This is a really excellent plan. And whilst I love the idea of the endless espionage and investigation, I struggle to think of how you'd represent that in a game. "... And you keep on doing this forever and ever and ever." doesn't strike me as a good way to end the game. That's kinda why I was aiming for the CoT as a "villain", because at the heart of that web of horror and evil, there's just a house with a few sick old men in it. That's a really suitable place for the Final Declassification to happen, I think. The player characters delve inside, looking for... something, intent on finding the evil behind everything that they've worked on. And in the end they almost step into Azathoth's court. Maybe have a confrontation with one or two of the Masters, who haven't been orchestrating anything. And then, whatever they do, when they turn around and leave, they've got their eyes finally opened. They try to leave that place of horror and find they can't, even when they head back home.
One thing I should have added before is that what really got me thinking was the whole Home section of the new DG rules. Since the framing characters will be a little less exposed to direct sanity loss than the flashback, it should be a little easier to target their bonds. Then in between the framing scenarios and the nested scenarios, we can have little Home sequences, where the Agents' increasing understanding of reality begins to destroy their home lives, and more hints and indications of the unreality of the world can be given, in little personal apocalypses.
>In context an image forms that implies the Cult of Transcendence driving mankind insane enough to make a play for a place at Azathoth's court, but that isn't important. It could be any end of the world. The reveal is that it already happened
>You need to be quite sure WHAT has happened so that you can place relevant and appropriate hints towards that end.
I think that's what OP meant.
Well remember, that's what Final Revelation is:
"The Friday Group didn't succeed; you've been not-succeeding for eternity. You will forever not-succeed."
Yeah, on a game-level you can't expect the players to turn up week after week etc. But the characters, they're doing it forever. That's why you shouldn't start with briefing them, giving them the investigation etc. Start in medias res. They're already investigating, they've always been investigating. They are questing for a meaning that has been burned to the ground and completely destroyed.
I personally think Azathoth isn't a super-good fit for this style of cyclical stuff, since he's more about total annihilation. You could maybe work in some more angle around dreaming - it's not so much about entering Azathoth's court as his mind?
This would be why the meaning is gone from the world, because it's made contact with sheer mindlessness of Azathoth's "mind". Perhaps the Cult sought to usurp Azathoth's power by becoming his mind?Hastur or Nyarlathotep might be better fits; they're more about masks, endless deception and manipulation.
What if when they come face to face with the old men of the Cult of Transcendence, they come to face themselves as old men? In the nature of the apocalypse, time has broken and the past is meeting the present/future. In the spirit of cosmic fatalism, their actions are in fact bringing about/have brought about the actions they were intended to prevent because that's what already happened.
The font is Tlwg Typo Bold and its color is a palette from the image.
Do it before they do it to you.
Remember to try and provide some sense of purpose to the twist so that it makes sense.
Introduce some time-fuck goings on in some of the nested sessions to preface the whole "you're not in the present" thing.
For the cult thing, have the Frame narrative characters lose SAN in a controlled fashion so that it makes sense that these guys, in time, could plausibly become cultists.
Sometimes he does. This one was written and originally performed by David Bowie though.
Find me a better pic and lyrics.
Starting in media res is a solid suggestion, though I'd probably start it with them walking into the building they do their work in, just to establish the details of that, so that that can begin degrading and changing over time.
>it's not so much about entering Azathoth's court as his mind?
Is there a difference? Who knows? Those suggestions are good though.
>Hastur or Nyarlathotep might be better fits
I had thought about both. But I think they both strike me as symptoms rather than the cause. Hastur is the effect of rubbing discordant realities together, the blinding light of revalation creating spots and bizarre shapes in your vision. It bleeds into the Agent's reality as they uncover more and more of the "truth" and introduces more and more falsehoods and masks to hide the real truth. Nyarlathotep is, I think, overused as a villain. But It works as a sidenote, the person grinning at the Agents from the sidelines as they delve deeper and deeper into madness, sometimes encouraging them deeper when they need it, sometimes dropping a few clues. He's the messenger and soul of the Outer Gods after all.
>What if when they come face to face with the old men of the Cult of Transcendence, they come to face themselves as old men?
I love this. Especially since I was figuring, given the Masters' habit of occasionally leaving the mansion to perform apparently random errands, having the agents occasionally spotting old people around who look very familiar could be another nice bit of foreshadowing.
I'm in the same boat. All of this is spitballing because I don't actually have a group of people to run DG for at this exact moment in time. This is all purely hypothetical.
>For the cult thing, have the Frame narrative characters lose SAN in a controlled fashion so that it makes sense that these guys, in time, could plausibly become cultists.
That should be doable. Especially if you target their bonds a little more.
DLZ by TV On The Radio
>This is beginning to feel like the long-winded blues of the never
>This is beginning to feel like it's curling up slowly and finding a throat to choke.
Oh I was just criticising from the sidelines. I'm not going to put any actual work in. Keep up the good work though.
And I just had a look, and damn, you're right it's much harder to get pictures of such things.
So, going with the psychological metaphor and the confusion that happens when you mesh the mentalities of the PCs as agents trying to prevent the Apocalyspe with the cultists they end up being, perhaps that's all Hastur and Nyarlathotep "really" are? Hastur is cognitive dissonace, the the sensation of trying to hold two mutually conflicting thoughts in your head at once. Nyarlathotep could be that bastard the conscience, who keeps popping up now and again to remind you just what shitheels you are (except you aren't yet so it appears like unwarranted antagonism) or perhaps he's the seductive devil, the embodiment of that temptation the Agents succumb to in order to become the Masters.
Of course, simplifying the Mythos to Jungian psychology somewhat lessens the "cosmic horror" angle, so you are probably going to want to keep some overt Lovecraftian bullshit going on to make sure people "get" that it's more than just ALL IN YOUR MIIIIIIND and all.
>I'd probably start it with them walking into the building they do their work in
It could be a reoccuring vignette, introducing each new green box/mission. The agents meet in the parking lot and walk through security together, talking about anything but the content of their files (not yet secure) and revealing insights into their character, motivation, and situation. Then they pass the final door and work begins, no more time for idle chatter.
I disagree. I think a key part of getting this twist to work properly is to divorce all sense of a world outside the investigation. Tell the players you want to keep things relatively focussed, not waffling and so on, but then over time... wait, when was the last time you ate? Is your daughter in college? (Daughter.. when did that happen?)
Yeah, it's not super-necessary but I think of it as one of those meta-level twists that someone like Kojima would pull. "It's just the investigation and action because that's what you want, right? Just action action action. That's who you are. There's nothing outside of that."
I'm not sure. I think the horrible truth of the revalation is lessened if the player characters don't feel they're losing anything. If all they are and all they've ever been is these investigators, then what is there to lose? I think it'd work better if there's a Lie they've constructed about the world outside, about a web of relationships and people they care about that degrade and warp over time as they dive deeper and deeper into the truth.
But I'll need to consider that.
This is getting really meta, but...
all a roleplayer does is imagine another reality around a fictitious conception of self, in our dreams we play every role - the hunter and the hunted - at the same time. So the step from
>What is your character's family like and why do they matter?
is not far to
>Tell me more about your imaginary family, schizo.
And I think that's pretty important. If the whole point of the final revalation of the unreality of things is that nothing is real, and if the player characters start off like that anyway, then the revalation doesn't have an impact. I think you'd have to bait the players into believing their backgrounds and networks of relationships matter to have any hope of affecting the players when they're taken away.
Otherwise it could easily be...
- DRAMATIC CONCLUSION -
The secret mystery you have been revealing bit for bit over the last years and now finally can glimpse in its entirety is that
you are roleplayers playing a game!
There is no such state as too much Floyd.
I think the balance to strike would be REFFERING TO but never SHOWING the outside world. You might say "your character feels better going to the Green Box after knowing your son is safe at home now" but don't have a scene that actually features the son or is set at home. So its "real" to the players (and the characters) until it is revealed not to be.
As I understand it, downtime is not played out but rolled for. It's where you regain your mental stability and social network. And I would do it just like that. Ask the player what the character plans to do until next Monday, roll and process results, and switch back from narration to free play as they come back to work.
This can still fit perfectly. In hindsight it will be the moment when they always transfered into the shared delusion. They would have spent the week in a motel room or an empty unkempt house drinking and watching TV, then enter the facility and tell each other about their family and whatever other fantasies their subconscious painted in a mental hygiene reflex.
>As I understand it, downtime is not played out but rolled for. It's where you regain your mental stability and social network. And I would do it just like that. Ask the player what the character plans to do until next Monday, roll and process results, and switch back from narration to free play as they come back to work.
It's played out in the rules as written, though they're meant to just be short scenes of more than a few minutes each.
Though I suppose that'd actually be a solid way of involving them.
>So, tell the other characters what the most important thing you did at home this week
So what's the stance on christianity in the mythos? All a lie, based on something?
As much to it as you like, definitely a good way to draw in impressionable people.
>it was considered a collossal fuck-up?
Was it, though? The official explanation for why Waco caught fire was that the cult was doing it. But one alternative (debunked) theory was that gas grenades fired with pyrotechnic charges were the source of the blaze. What if the DG agents on scene realised some Seriously Bad Shit was occuring and fire was the only solution?
Fire is the best solution for most problems
Interesting. Is "amen" an intonation to YS?
That's some David Icke shit, isn't it? It means more along the lines of "So be it" or "Truly" or "BITCH I HURRD DAT".
No-one? Seriously? I find that hard to believe. It's a notorious case and nerds are notoriously tasteless.
I think it's a bit too polarized to publish. It might be okay nowadays, and it's always okay with your friends. But to include it in a frivolous conspiracy theory for a game setting like maybe today writing a scenario where the Bush clan has been behind Hitler, the Saudi dominance, the JFK assassination, and 9/11 because they're part of some ancient cult which completely controls the elite through blackmail.
Man, he just stops in the thread once every day or so to say "Stop liking what I don't like!" He's not even trying anymore, just report him and move on.
Now that they're moving away from the 90s I doubt we're gonna see any official publication of what "really happened" at Waco and I'm honestly fine with that. It adds to the idea that Waco was such a clusterfuck that not even Delta Green knows exactly how it all went wrong. It reinforces the fact that in the end cowboy era Delta Green is just a bunch of loosely connected cells doing what they can, not some all knowing Illuminati-esque conspiracy. Maybe they found out the Davidians were up to some eldritch shit, maybe they didn't find anything at all. Some questions are more interesting when left unanswered and besides, Delta Green "canon" was never about certainty.
That's one of the things I really like about DG. It doesn't try to explain any of the awful things humanity does "Because the Mythos". The Mythos is always a side-event, sitting parasite-like beside human atrocities.
I think my preferred explanation is just the simple one that it was a collosal fuck up on DG's part. Some cowboy decided to ramp up the pressure and push the feds into over-reacting. Then in the aftermath, when the Agents are sifting through the wreckage, they all eventually go "Well shit, turns out there was nothing Mythosy going on here at all. Welp."
As well as Yog-Sothoth, there's a Dreamlands scenario where Nyarlathotep implies he was Jesus. But I think that's kinda silly. Of course the idea of a benevolent and omnipotent God is a lie in the Mythos, it couldn't be anything but. But the myth of Christianity could be based on real events. Jesus could have been a real preacher, sinister and preternatural events could have surrounded him until some Cthulhu Invictus investigators decided they had to be rid of him.
>Man, I sure do hate legibility
>I know, I'll pick an ass-tastic font and make it bright fucking yellow!
Please, Anon, for the love of god, next time use a decent font and choose a colour that at least compliments the image chosen.
>ISIS is a cult trying to usher in the end fo the world, riding on radical Islam
>Coming into contact with them is highly dangerous
>Memetic engineering nasheeds causes ground troops to break, flee and convert
>Towns submit to the will of their conquerors after being subjected to "re-education"
>Infected Iraqi troops are executed to stop any further spread, then declared missing
>The Kurds remain mysteriously unaffected by this
>The infection has already spread to every nation on earth, wherever the memetic devices can be received
>Turkey is a boiling pot of infected people, just waiting to complete the conversion
I know what my new setting is.
>Jehovah's Witnesses is restorationist Christian denomination, distinct from mainstream Christianity
>They believe that the destruction of the present world system is imminent, circa 2055
>They are best known for their door-to-door preaching, distributing literature, and refusing blood transfusions
>They reject the Holy Trinity, immortality of the soul, and the concept of an afterlife
>Adherents commonly refer to their body of beliefs as "the truth" and consider themselves to be "in the truth"
>They are taught that it is vital to remain "separate from the world"
>The Governing Body of Elders warn members to "avoid independent thinking", claiming such thinking "was introduced by Satan"
Looking to run a DG game where the Agents assault a Drug Lord's mansion, any ideas on what to include?
Mythos connection was going to be something that exposes regular people to cult-y stuff, makes them more receptive to worshiping outer gods, or something like that.
The Drug Lord is Johnny Carcosa, the latest drug on the streets is something strange, called Aklo. The high causes users to believe that they have achieved a higher consciousness, possibly having seen the true nature of the world or connected with an otherworldly entity. Side-effects includes glossolalia, extended periods of catatonia and extreme bouts of sadomasochism.
In the basement of his mansion is held a shoggoth, held in a circle of thirteen living but fused human beings, all of whom are covered head to toe in in an unknown script. His drug is cut with shoggoth 'blood'. It decreases SAN, and an overdose can lead to mild but hideous shapechanging (vestigial limbs, melted features, tail)
So, if two special agents were called in to be chewed out by their superior, who would chew them out?
FBI Special Agents, sorry
If the investigation's got some resources devoted to it, the Special Agent in Charge would be the one to distribute beatdowns. If the sabotage is big enough, it'd be bumped up to the assistant director.
I don't know.
For me, the Waco Siege is the first large and public case of the new basic assumption in law enforcement: military aggression and psyops against the civilian population. And that is the underlying theme for the War on Terror. So seeing as the new DG is modeled after the War on Terror, the Waco Siege should be a central event in DG history as well.
Also, it's a really charged situation and the anticlimax of false positive just fails to deliver. If ever DG could present a more compelling explanation than the official narrative, Waco is it.
Also I want to include Bill Hicks.
For those of you making these "Operators operating" pictures: a bit of The Mutton Birds' White Valiant might be good.
"here we are
on a hill over there
see all the cars parked in a field
and the crowd walking down the fenceline"
Tcho Tcho have been distributing a street drug that draws users to the mansion to be used for sacrifice/food. DG is called in after an oddly large number of vagrants are brought into a local police station raving about an Outer God of choice.
Alright. Let's get into the details of this Waco thing.
Vernon H. is a 7th Day Adventist splinter group preacher who teaches the End of Days to 130 men, women, and children at Mt Carmel under the alias David Koresh. His spin is that he is the second coming, and his mission is to father an army of divine offspring and teach the true believers for the imminent apocalypse in the form of the US government. To this end the group prepares an arsenal and drills for the coming war.
After gunfire from the Mt Carmel shooting range alarms the local Sheriff, the ATF launches a months long investigation involving surveillance and an undercover agent trying to infiltrate the Branch Davidians. The agent is welcomed cautiously and shown everything over weeks, but unknown to him his cover never held a second.
The ATF prepares a surprise raid attempting to arrest Koresh and secure the armory, but Koresh is warned and confronts the undercover agent, then lets him leave. Warned that the element of surprise is lost, the ATF operation proceeds regardless. Shots are fired almost immediately as the ATF enters the main structure at the main entrance and through 2 roof windows. During a 30 minute stalemate bullets are constantly fired indiscriminately through the structure, killing and injuring several, children among them. The Branch Davidians attempt to negotiate with the local Sheriff, but the ATF communications officer on the scene cannot be reached. A seize fire is eventually reached and the ATF withdraws.
With federal agents dead the FBI takes over and negotiates with an injured and emotional Koresh and his deputy. A surrender is agreed upon after a recording of Koresh has been broadcast on national radio. Media attention rises, but at the last moment Koresh receives a divine message that he must wait. The FBI strategy changes.
A group of children is allowed to leave the siege. Their parents and several other children remain. They record videos explaining how they are not hostages.
>A group of 30 British Branch Davidians were living at Mt Carmel.
>The ATF shot and killed an armed Branch Davidian attempting to return to Mt Carmel on foot on the first day, leaving his body on the ground for 3 days.
>82 civilians, including 21 children were subjected to intense psychological warfare with tanks circling Mt Carmel and speakers blasting loud noises, the screams of dying animals among them, for sleep deprivation.
>The FBI negotiators completely lost control of the situation internally.
>The decision to penetrate the structure with tanks to pump in massive amounts of gas was made on a political level.
There's so much potential here.
>Also, it's a really charged situation and the anticlimax of false positive just fails to deliver.
But that is what actually happened. That is the nineties, the ultimate anti-climax. You could run a game based on the Y2K bug being an actual end-times precursor, but it wasn't.
Bin Ladens death was anti-climactic. Abandoning Iraq to ISIS was anti-climactic. The anti-climax is perfect for DG because it underlines the inherent uncertainty, risk and lack of control associated with these operations.
There are no hero's in DG. No parades. No uniforms. Just trying not to fuckup when the whole world is at stake. Better to burn a bunch of people in their home on a chance than to risk the world because you can't get past the Bill of Rights.
If you don't like that you can always go back to checking manure receipts for the Iowa FBI field office.
>Vernon and his deputy are found side by side, charred, in a hallway. Vernon was shot in the head, his deputy shot in the mouth.
>Vernon used to be a musician. There are still albums of his you can get.
>In 2009 his mother was stabbed to death by her sister.
My feeling is something either got inside Vernon and left him once his task was complete (Yithian?), or something talked to him and made him believe everything he did to an end (Nyarly?, MJ-12?). He was frantically writing religious texts during the siege (Carcosa?)
What if it IS the brain of Jesus Christ?
You should not apply the attitude of an agent toward GM duties. It never goes well.
DG's flavor is a lot about subverting these iconic tragedies and offering a secret explanation that makes a little more sense than what is presented on the news. It has fun with conspiracies. I don't need a game to play bleak reality.
Bin Laden's execution in Pakistani arrest and inciting civil war in Iraq have no relation to this.
> I don't need a game to play bleak reality.
3edgy m8, 3edgy.
>Bin Laden's execution in Pakistani arrest and inciting civil war in Iraq have no relation to this.
They have everything to do with the relationship of Anti-climax with Delta Green. Real shit is pretty anti-climactic and it has a purpose in DG. It need not be constant, and no one is saying this.
2nd place, 2007. U.X.O by Bret Kramer. VERY anti-climactic.
Well my feeling is that the Mi-go would have the original Jesus cerebrum stored somewhere safe and are drawing/growing copies to use for experiments. If one comes out bad (mad) you just take the next.
As to the question of SAN loss, just look at David Koresh. I'd say it was a significant amount. But that's the beauty of cultists, you just keep playing with SAN 0 and ignore any further SAN loss.
True but it's also about subverting the omniscient government conspiracy trope; no government is competent enough to pull it off. MJ 12 are idiots, DG are borderline sociopathic, underfunded and under-strength.
Having some fuck ups just be fuck ups is in keeping with the theme.
We'd could explain a few things.
>The Bradley tracks repeatedly running over the grave of a freshly buried Davidian.
>FBI FLIR recordings of automatic gun fire and grenade explosions directed into the compound.
>The presence of about 20 military 'advisors' at the end of the siege.
>The massive use of volatile CS gas for hours, paired with pyrotechnic CS projectiles when the fire started.
>The burning body impaled on a tank's crane which was quickly pushed back inside the collapsing structure.
>15 shot corpses piled around the only remaining exit of the compound.
>The detonation of a demolition charge on top of the concrete room where the children were hiding from the fire.
>The concerted efforts to prohibit any remotely credible witnesses from leaving the scene alive and the disproportional media campaign to draw the Branch Davidians in general and David Koresh in particular as a pedophile cult in the illegal weapons trade with drugs and coercion.
This sets some boundaries. For starters the core of the congregation was the objective of the original raid, and not one of them would have walked out no matter what. Then they must have had something more than their children to keep the agencies at bay, some tactical advantage that the feds did not dare go up against. They had been under investigation, surveillance, and infiltration by the ATF for months, so this was planned. The corpse mutilation was obviously an attempt to keep it from rising. Information from inside the compound not getting out was a central theme of the entire siege, so this must have been crucial. Some kind of informational contamination was a main containment objective. And finally none of Koresh's offspring could be allowed to live.
>DG's flavor is a lot about subverting these iconic tragedies and offering a secret explanation that makes a little more sense than what is presented on the news. It has fun with conspiracies. I don't need a game to play bleak reality.
On the contrary, I think the authors have gone out of their way in a lot of cases to not provide Mythos explanations for iconic tragedies. The Holocaust wasn't caused by the Mythos, but it was there on the sidelines as an awful little parasite (mostly brought on by human action). The Great Famine wasn't caused by the Mythos, but the Ghouls certainly thanked The Great Provider. It's easy to assume that the secret history means that there has to be a mythos secret behind everything, but it cheapens the Mythos when it is involved, and lets humans off the hook.
The biggest danger to humanity in DG isn't that Azathoth will decide to wake up. It's that some really smart idiots in a government-funded lab will work out how to generate infinite energy from Azathoth, or some really stupid idiots in some deranged terror cell decide that following the instructions in the Mad Arab's book will definitely destroy the Great Satan. The real theme of Delta Green is humans fucking up against the backdrop of cosmic meaninglessness.
Waco being what happens when DG fucks up and makes the wrong decision makes perfect sense to me. DG are only human, and especially during the cowboy years, they were reckless, dangerous and on a massive ends justify the means bender. Over-reacting and pushing the button too early before they'd actually worked out whether something was really happening is perfectly in character. It still offers a secret explanation, but it doesn't contribute to an air of DG never making mistakes, or everything bad ever being the fault of the Mythos.
The alleged meth lab was a feint to get around the Posse Comitatus Act.
The entire compound was penetrated with transmitting fiberoptic cameras and audio bugs, giving the authorities perfect situational awareness.
The 3 agents who went into the roof window had all been Clinton's body guards.
The problem is that it's what really happened, with overzealous DG substituted for a politically threatened FBI. There's no alternate history here, just history with one actor renamed. It is too close to the true tragedy to be entertaining in any way. In fact I find it unsettling, and not in a nice Lovecraftian way. It would make the game political, and that can not lead anywhere.
No. DG is fantastic, not reactionary.
Oh, without a doubt. But they're not perfect. They make the same mistakes everyone else does, and sometimes things get out of hand and control is lost.
I think DG should be unsettling, and not always in a Lovecraftian "life is meaningless and we float on a speck in an ocean in which swim things immeasurably superior to us, which regard us with ambivalent malevolence" way, though that that has to be part of it. To me, it's also much more about dealing with very petty, human evil.
Very often that evil is tinged with the Unnatural, but at its core is some people doing very human things for very human reasons. The pharmaceutical company in Targets of Opportunity that are working with the excretions of alien parasites with an eye to curing death, who run human experimentation labs in Africa supported by corrupt local militia. The Exalted Circle running human trafficking rings where rape and violence are commonplace. The Nazis trying to buy an alliance with the Deep Ones with the offering of subhumans to use as breeding stock. And an overzealous government agency overstepping the mark, crushing civil liberties and human rights in the name of an agenda they refuse to allow the public to know.
I think DG has to be political, in a way. DG Agents are agents of the federal government whose whole modus operandi is to ignore the law and march lockstep over anything approaching human rights in the name of their cause. Not for nothing have I heard people refer to DG as a cult that worships the Great Old One "A-Cell". When those people are your protagonists, and they're agents of government, you kinda have to see the game as political, even if it doesn't actually make a judgement over whether Delta Green is right to do what it does.
The three Clinton guards who died inside the roof window were killed by friendly fire from outside and from one of the helicopters.
At least one dead ATF agent was brought to the scene in a body bag.
Seems to me like 2 cells were on the scene, one eliminating the other and placing fake evidence.
Maybe the siege was a standoff between two cells that just happened to use Mt Carmel for deniability.
It would make a much better clusterfuck than um- we were wrong?
The gamebooks say that there was some connection between the Branch Davidians and something DG were investigating. This was back in the cowboy days. DG decides it's time to clean house and reveals the firearms offences to the FBI, prompting Waco and the disaster that followed.
Word on the extent to which DG was involved is not available.
DG considered it a resounding success, because no DG agent was put at risk, they got another agency to do the dirty work, and whether or not anything Mythos was happening, it isn't may more because they're all dead.
This sums up pre-Fairfield cowboy Delta well.
>reveals the firearms offences to the FBI
It was an ATF operation until day 2 of the siege.
I think the alphabet soup in Waco should be relevant, because it reflects the messes DG agents run into regularly.
Semi-related; I like giving my players the ability to affect when everything goes all alphabet soup, usually only ways to speed it up though, they aren't very good at being discrete until they are being directly supervised.
A good way to approach this would be to have many characters with specific interests. The tragic situation arises out of the interdependency of these interests.
>SAC of ATF Texas operations
Federal law enforcement, and the ATF in particular, are under scrutiny and intense pressure to justify their budgets. A big media event featuring heroic agents in ATF windbreakers would go a long way towards the coming fiscal year. Turns out a unit has been running up expenses staking out a bunch of gun toting religious nutjobs on a hilltop, a perfect opportunity. Plan the raid, get a search warrant, and alert the press.
>3rd Engineer Brigade "Greywolf", 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood
If the Iraq war is demonstrating one thing then that nothing beats experience. Those green recruits aren't worth their fodder until they taste life fire. So when an agency requests help in the form of training for an operation, helicopters, or armored vehicles, that's great! Because those things come with personnel to operate them, and that personnel gets a taste of the action.
>Special Operations Command, Fort Bragg
Those bootlickers down in Hood got a hot operation from the feds, and they're in over their heads. Let's deploy in a support role and show them how it's done!
>FBI SAC National Security Branch, South Region
We're still in damage control over Ruby Ridge, and now the ATF has gotten 4 of their agents shot in a standoff with some militia. This needs to be handled professionally, send everything we've got. We must avoid the appearance of a totalitarian state, but we must also make it absolutely perfectly clear to even the last hillbilly in front of a TV that anyone who shoots at law enforcement gets incinerated.
The End Times are nigh. The holy war is imminent. Blessed are those who can prove their faith in earnest. The evil armies draw together under banners of deceit. Mankind is lost, only the chosen few can ascend on The Last Day. This here is our stand.
ATF undercover agent
ATF commander on the ground
FBI hostage negotiation team
FBI press office
FBI tactical operations
Attorney General Janet Reno
Bill Clinton's chief of staff Mack McLarty
At least 2 of these contain operatives of DG or something like MJ-12.
What I meant, but was too lazy to type, was that at least on DG cell is there. And there is another group operating on the same level. It might be another DG cell, it might be MJ-12, hell, if you're playing in Canada in may well be M-EPIC. The important thing is that this is the real mission objective.
From the constellation it seems clear that one cell is hunting the other, has different information, and will get the 3 former Clinton guards shot in the raid on day 1.
The cell with the Clinton guards must have had more members, or they'd be out. It could be interesting to reconstruct their mission or summon their spirits for questioning or something, but I think the situation will be more tense if there are remaining members still in the fight.
They were already on a mission, and that mission must have triggered someone high up to activate their retirement plans. It seems obvious that this original mission was concerned with Koresh and his offspring and teachings. And this must be volatile enough to cause the hidden higher levels to dissent and operate against each other. Obviously the Koresh vector is a risk and must be contained, but there might be a power play in there. Getting one of the kids into reprogramming and attempting to use the bloodline for one's own purposes could be a tantalizing opportunity for someone like MJ-12. Similarly, investigating that possibility could be a DG mission.
Now the second team is activated because someone on the level of A-cell wants to stop the first team before they cause a giant mess, or because they are making a play for what the original team was sent to prevent.
The Branch Davidians are still at the root of all this. But this could have been solved with a gas leak or a sniper in a few minutes. But now that everyone has to cover their asses and suspect hidden motives behind every move the situation spins out of control. No one can make any moves, except desperate concealed ones.
The first team know they're on a list after 3 of their members were gunned down from behind. But that doesn't mean they can abandon their mission. The second team thought they would go in with a scalpel but ended up in a complicated mess, maybe they don't even know who the remaining members of team 1 are. Meanwhile, TV crews swarm like bugs.
L and K never went on missions back in the day. She was his replacement.
Yeah, it's MIB, but I always thought it was better that the gif was of an actual DG team, not an MIB team.
Naming their chatroom MIB is just a way of showing that they have a goo sense of humor.
What if Koresh had some kind of power like the Word of God from Preacher?
It would explain the complete failure of the original raid, would provide a reason for the siege, and would present interesting problems for the agents on the ground.
Anyone within earshot of Koresh can fall under his control, and this includes not just their actions, but their beliefs and motivations as well. He can completely turn people with a carefully worded sentence. That's why massive loudspeakers were a vital part of the perimeter.
All the agencies want to do is shoot him dead without having to explain to much to any cameras. But he is surrounded by families of loyal victims. And how contaminated they actually are is unclear at the beginning of the siege.
It's based on the cartoon series. In the animated series, they all went on adventures together, and it was pretty awesome.
Honestly, the animated series, despite keeping K on board, wound up being a much better sequel to the MIB franchise than the shitty ass movie sequels.
>um- we were wrong?
The parlance is "mistakes were made". The difference is clear, especially when you might have to go before a house select committee.
Other than that, I love the clusterfuck idea.
That made me incredibly sad. It will be written into my games canon. Thank you.
The Jehovah's Witnesses have put back when the world was meant to end over a dozen times, since 1874 through to "within the lives of those living now" in the 90s.
What would their play be?
I can explain Mi-go with Jesus genetics. The Gray love themselves some bloodline manipulation. And as a sidenote, the 'original' is unveiled as another experiment.
Nyarthotep just likes to fuck with people. But he would want the messiah role, so if it's him then he is Koresh and is just having a blast.
I can even explain a Carcosa connection. Maybe little Vernon had a shaping experience with the Hastur complex, and paired with his intense religious upbringing and being groomed as a leader it triggered something inside him, made him an agent who shills our entropy to dark powers through religious indoctrination.
Yithians stay out of shit, so I don't really see them having any stakes here.
And the Shan? What do they want? Don't they have their little country to run? I mean there were a lot of Brits at Mt Carmel...
Sexual deviance is common in cults. Hell it is common in any group where the strong can prey on the weak with little outside influence.
If you want to go the hedonism route, you got to have more than that. A cruel alien hedonist is going to want to derive more outre pleasures from the flesh of his host than sexual romps with frumpish dressed middle-aged mothers.
Everything else is just allegations. Even FBI Director William Sessions says it was bullshit.
>Reno is the Shan.
>The Brits on site had been a group of Army of the Third Eye.
>ATF investigations turned up nothing illegal, but noted a bizarre alien invasion sub-plot in the sermons.
Mine works without trying to rewrite the official narrative.
>A cruel alien hedonist is going to want to derive more outre pleasures from the flesh of his host
Shan are psychic. No idea what manner of depravity they can get up to in your head. But just because there aren't mutilated corpses piling up doesn't mean much when it comes to EM bugs.
Just finished the second season. Shame it didn't have the spooky/philosophical elements (at least to the same degree as) season 1 did.
If I wanted to get into Delta Green, should I wait until the kickstarter is released, or am I good with the old 90s edition? Do I need a Call of Cthulhu rulebook to play the old one or is it stand-alone? Should I just play with the rules they posted online? Sorry if these are retarded questions but this shit is confusing as hell.
Definitely play with the new rules they posted. I switched my classic DG group using the very same. You won't need anything else.
>>Quickstart kit + adventure
>>New core rules official beta
That's the game market for ya. There's no reprints with the interesting publishers. Hundreds of books are never heard of again, and a few keep getting more and more expensive.
But now there's POD.
Excellent quality, thanks.
Okay, let me write up Waco with the MJ-12 angle before this vanishes in the archives.
Vernon Wayne Howell is born on August 17, 1959 in Houston, Texas to a 14 year old mother living with an alcoholic. He lives with his grandmother for years until his mother's return from having a different family. He describes his childhood as lonely. At 22 he joins the Born Again Christian movement and shortly after his mother's 7th Day Adventist church. He is thrown out by the pastor after proclaiming intent on his daughter because god gave him a vision.
>Vernon is the latest in a long line of experiments by the Mi-go which also brought forth the original Jesus and probably many other prophets and messianic figures. His central nervous system is grown from a genetic seed that has been marked for evolutionary progress and social impact.
In 1982 he joins the independent Branch Davidian community at Mount Carmel and recruits new members while playing with his band at clubs in the area. In 1983 he claims the gift of prophecy, has a relationship with the 65 year old leader of the group, and begins teaching his own "The Serpent's Root". The group was divided and the designated leader to be, George Roden, threw Howell and his group out at gunpoint. Another group also left.
>As the Jesus evolution takes hold Vernon begins to develop powers over the minds of others. His vision of the world informed by his interpretation of scripture intensifies the assumption of the coming apocalypse from the 7th Day Adventist church.
Howell and his followers set up a temporary camp in Palestine, Tx. He travels around the world and recruits new members for his congregation. In Israel he reports another vision and takes the name David Koresh, changing his legal name.
> He sees a final war already happening where the last remaining true believers must face Armageddon in progress, led by his offspring of 24 holy children. Beyond the bible quoting he is of course perfectly correct.
By 1987 Koresh has earned recognition by the entire Branch Davidian community and Lois Roden dies of old age married to him. Her son George challenges Koresh to a prophet-off and goes so far as to exhume his mother's body for a contest of raising the dead. When Koresh takes a posse to Mt Carmel to take photographs of the exhumed body as requested by law enforcement, a shoot out ensues which is resolved by the Sheriff after Roden is injured.
>Koresh's power over others seems to fail with individuals close in the Jesus lineage.
In 1989 Roden murders another false messiah with an ax and is imprisoned. Koresh raises money to pay debts on Mt Carmel and retakes the center, discovering a meth lab which is reported to police. On August 28th 1990 Koresh's name change is made official.
>Koresh perfects his method of control over others. He preaches celibacy and that he must father 24 children with women from his congregation of true believers, from a 13 year old daughter to wives and mothers of members. All this happens with complete consent of all involved, people are not aware of his control over them.
The Branch Davidians are an outwardly open community. Some of their members work jobs in surrounding towns and they are well known from shopping in town. Koresh deals in guns for profit and has a good relationship to local gun dealers. He sends members to gun shows to buy and sell weapons. Everyone learns to shoot at the Mt Carmel range.
>Koresh knows the end is coming. Pressure has been steadily rising with allegations of child abuse from relatives of congregation members. A gun dealer informs him that the ATF has been asking questions and Koresh calls the agents to invite them for an inspection which never happens. He prepares his followers for battle and preaches how the hordes of evil have taken over the government. By now he can change a person's life with spoken command in a moment, bending their entire perception and memory to his will.
Of course MJ-12 has always known about Vernon Howell. Whether this was a subversive operation, a sign of conflict among the Gray, or what the Mi-go had been planning all along is unclear. But they want that genome, and they can't grow it from cells, so they have to get one of the children. But the fully developed powers of the adult specimen are a problem. They activate a unit embedded with the ATF which sets up surveillance down the road and sends in an undercover 'believer'.
>Of course MJ-12 cannot send any of its people within range of a person who can make them spill all their secrets with a word. So they use an uninitiated ATF agent, full knowing that Howell will identify him as such almost immediately, but gambling that he will allow the pawn on his board if that pawn is 'just' looking for gun violations.
Delta Green may have been remotely interested in Howell's supposed powers, subtle as they were. But a suspicious ATF operation definitely puts them on the map. One of the earliest opportunities is a request by the ATF to Ford Hood for training and helicopters in anticipation of the raid on Mt Carmel. But as these things go it would certainly be advantageous to also have someone in the FBI hierarchy. If things go bad a Special Forces cell is standing by.
>This is where it starts getting hazy and I definitely have to get more of the structure done before I can position the PCs. My feeling is that Clinton's office coordinates MJ-12 and Janet Reno runs the DG operation.
Last Things Last is short and sweet. It is no Haunting, but it comes close. Then I'd look at the other short scenarios and a few Shotgun Shells, run very short missions until everyone is immersed in the setting, maybe kill a PC if the opportunity arises to drive home the setting's deadlyness.
Then look at the 90s books or maybe by then Impossible Landscapes is released. This is where you start serious missions with an overarching plot.
Yeah, I'm not unleashing rape monsters on my group.
Actually this might work because My group needs something new to do so they don't get burned out on my werewolf game. Month or so of main game, week or two of DG
Oh, I know sexuality and the horror of rape is a mainstay of the genre. I just don't want to invite a bunch of newish people to the game and start describing how dicks are turing them into mindless slaves
I mean, Lover in the Ice is about as sexualized as Alien. The perk of it is that the scenario is only as graphic as you want it to be. Unless your group is completely immature about it or are the type to immediately turn their noses at the thought of anything remotely sexual you should be able to spin it in a way that will get them the good kind of uncomfortable.
Eh, I need to work on my GMing before sticking mind control phalli down the throats of PCs. RPPR had a group that not only trusted each other but do this way more often than I do. So, I'd rather wait to do something like this with my group.
>Virt makes two or three half assed bait posts in every DG thread and is largely ignored
>He actually posts on his tumblr bragging about it
He's doing a great job, I bet he's getting lots of notes. Jesus, what a fucking loser.
>constantly spamming "Virt" in a million threads
>constantly posting pictures of things "Virt" has posted in a million threads
>constantly talking about what "Virt" says on reddit and now fucking tumblr
It's confirmed, this guy is obviously "Virt". Nobody else in the universe could possibly care about this asshole this much... except for this asshole himself.
So yeah, fuck off "Virt". You were banned for a reason, fucking stay banned you piece of shit.
General creepy works. But really it depends on so much, your group's tastes and tolerances, the setting and locations, the themes and mood of the scenario, your personal style, in the end you can use virtually anything if the situation comes up.
I don't know shit about his activity on tumblr or Reddit but I think we actually discovered in one of the earlier DG threads that the guy shitposting really is Virt evading his ban. I don't know about the people calling him out but either way just report/ignore all of their shit and talk about the game.
There's 2 separate campaign ideas being worked on, plenty of OC posters generated, and noobs are getting good advice.
You DO know that the term Cyber has no actual meaning in reality and we just teach it to politicians to make fun of them?
If DG had anything seriously labeled cyber- I'd be concerned about their competence.
>One of the snobs asking for help picking out a oneshot scenario. Is PX Poker Night good? It looks like it can be a good intro for the setting
It is a pretty solid intro to the setting. It's short, creepy in places and gives plenty of opportunity for roleplaying. Not entirely sure about using it as the introduction for a group of characters though, since it only really fits a certain group of characters, who then go on to be Friendlies rather than full-blown Agents.
But what you could do, if you wanted to run a more traditional DG game in the long run, is have that as the intro for the players, then put those characters to one side and introduce the normal characters separately. Then, when the Cell calls for backup from some deniable assets, you can bring in the survivors from PX Poker Night as DG's big guns, similar to BLACK FLAG in A Night on Owlshead Mountain.
Cyber is English for "I don't understand it and it scares me. And it has something to do with the Internet."
Cybernetics in turn is a vague term to describe an interdisciplinary approach to analyzing and regulating large complex systems, usually through technology. The closest phrase of actual relevance today would probably be Big Data.
Cyberpunk is a loosely defined literary genre that started in the 1980s and is mostly considered overtaken by reality.
Police or military with cyber- anything is a joke and you should consider what your taxes are paying for. Not that security isn't a big topic in IT, possibly the biggest. But never in history has any product or organization labeled cyber been anything but snake oil.
Personal aesthetics of a 90's kid, but I've always thought cyber was a more evocative and better sounding descriptor than "digital" "online" or "e-".. I would much rather have cybercrime than e-crime or online crime.
That's like having a motor vehicle crime unit that takes every case where the suspects used any kind of motorized transportation.
No, the way to do it is to educate every law enforcement officer on aspects of modern life in the age of information technology, and also provide specialized support units that can handle identification and evidence collection. So exactly like we used to do it in the 90s with telephones, only scaled.
No, they deal with crimes involving traffic or vehicular injuries.
The Cyber Crimes division get involved with crimes involving crimes committed online.
It makes total sense to have a detective or investigator trained and focused on one aspect of the law.
Time to start thinking about the next thread.
For a topic of conversation, how about mundane-detectable traces left by Mythos activity? Stuff that your investigators will be able to pick up on early on as indicators (but not 100% confirmations) that shit is about to get tentacular . For this I'm thinking of the neural scarring that occurs from the Skopsi mind control in the Teeth of God campaign, or Krantzberg Syndrome (a form of dementia unique to spellcasters) from the Laundry series.
I think is DG that is expressed as social damage more than anything. If you want to add another dimension, standard body horror should work well.
>You touched the thing when you had not realized that your glove had a tear. Now there's a spot on your finger. It looks like a deformed wart, and you think it might be growing.
All the way to
>You are sure now, something small is crawling under your skin. And it's not just one. You feel tiny claws climbing up your neck, they're swarming!
It was thinking more like stuff that might be found at a crime scene etc that hints at something being more than a mundane crime/event.
>the burn patterns make you uneasy as you evaluate them. Though the fire ravaged whole house, certain areas burned far too hot and with no chemical trace of accelerant. When you smooth away the dust and you see the buckling, warping, yet damningly regular concentric circles burned into the very foundations, you know this was no insurance job.
Right, but they can also be great scenario hooks/seeds which is why I thought brainstorming them might make a good topic for a new thread.
>the fingerprints are clear, even without powder or chemical agent, easy to take. Whatever it could be that caused the metal bannister to rust where the perp gripped it, that's something else entirely.
>you'd think they'd have hardcovers available after release, right?
They said something in one of the KS updates along the lines that having more hardcovers than they know are being sold is more trouble than it's worth. They might be on POD sometime in the future though, and PDFs should be go on sale as the books are released.
>CONSUMERS: After we deliver each new product to backers, consumers will be able to get it in PDF from DriveThruRPG and in print from stores and from Indie Press Revolution.
There will probably be limited stocks.
They stated that limited means a few hundred books. They had books in the past that they made no money on because of storage and logistics.
If Barnes and Noble orders 10,000 copies I'm sure they'll print them. But it doesn't seem likely.
The way things look now you can only get the original run through the KS or with some luck, i.E. a quality retailer who gets his order in before the books go to print. Maybe talk to them now?
After the first printing is gone there will only be POD. It will be more expensive, and I don't know if the quality will be the same. Many POD books aren't even offered as hardcovers.