Got to play There Is No Spoon at the con last week, which was a joy because I wrote it. I love hearing someone using my words and mechanics to lead play and have fun. It’s like writing a play, almost – the same words I wrote down now coming to life.
Anyway, we were a usual hovercraft crew, pre the finding of Neo. I was playing Husk, a guy who had learnt how to Cut and Paste his skin, taking textures off any surface and copying them onto his avatar. We were all pretty sneaky, in fact – Lochrinus could hack anything with a chip in it, MD was a grifter who could shape his image to subconsciously make anyone trust him, Slither could turn his avatar 2-D to slip through cracks, and Crowdsource could hack the environment to do crowd control and flash mobs, just sending out subconscious messages through code-hacking. And Crash was our wheelman.
With the sneakiness and Leverage-feel in mind, and with so many of us, our GM John cleverly used heist-style plotting, both to keep us all involved and to keep the action moving – ie instead of planning, we simply described an action as we did it, as you do in heist films. We did a Matrix run to pick up a package, but before reporting back to our captain (Tilda Swinton as Captain Pandora) we decided to take a peek at it, and discovered it was the plans for a nuclear bomb. Then we got a mysterious phonecall from somebody who shouldn’t have known where we were and then there were agents in helicopters. Crash got caught in a police spotlight but instead of being killed by an Agent, he was thrown a palm pilot.
Turns out that the pilot contains a list of names of kids in a downtown orphanage. One of the kids is Crash’s daughter, Elyse. Assuming he HAS a daughter, rather than just remembers he has (cue philosophical debate).
We run a second mish to pick up the nuclear pile from a big steamship. Another heist, but while we’re doing that, MD is breaking into City Hall to check out the orphanage. The heist goes bad and Lochrinus gets cornered by an Agent who again doesn’t kill him when he has the chance. He says instead that the Item is going to be used to destroy something they find Valuable, so the Agents and the Operatives can work together to stop a greater threat. By now MD has figured the same thing: the orphanage is probably bogus, it was put there to stop people looking at the power-hub underneath, and the info was a ploy to get us to stop the bomb.
Investigating Captain Pandora reveals she is very shady indeed, and keeps meeting with a guy called Captain Twist who is probably a renegade, gone off Zion’s reservation. He and Pandora have decided to nuke the city – destroy the illusion so people have nothing to hide in, forcing them to reject it and wake up in their egg sacks (apart from the millions who will die, or continue to live on in the hell-zoned city). We spend a long time talking about it. Eventually, we decide that we can’t kill people, even coppertops, as that makes us as bad as Agents. We turn on Pandora and go into the Matrix to stop her plan.
Her Matrix skills get her past our snipers and she runs into the orphanage while Twist and his men attack from across the street. Crash and Lochrinus take out the low-levels while Husk goes one-on-one with Twist in a katana battle to the death. Meanwhile Crowdsource summons a crowd of orphans to delay Pandora long enough for Slither to catch up to her. Slither’s deal was never to put his neck on the line, but his fate was that one day his time would come. And it did – he took down Pandora single-handedly, and turned off the bomb.
Alas, Twist escaped, but some of us decided that from now on, there were more dangers than Agents – rogue Zion operatives who had been driven mad by the cause were just as bad. Husk and Slither set up a special squad to catch Twist and other rogues. Like that madman prophet, Morpheus….
STING! ROLL CREDITS!
If you’d like to play your own Matrix film, you can download There Is No Spoon at this link, until my website proper goes up.