So we finally get to have another session of our homegrown Marvel Heroic Roleplaying campaign. In our last episode, the heroes (the Ultimate Posse) discover a supervillain organization called the Zodiac that has been responsible for insuring that villains that are captured are released, provided they are "franchisees" of the Zodiac for a measly 15-20% of their gains. Members of the Posse adopt supervillain identities in an attempt to become franchise members and discover more about the Zodiac's organization, only to discover that the Ferret, posing as the superninja Deathstriker, has actually been inducted into the Zodiac proper as Libra!
In this episode, the Posse ponder how to take down the Zodiac. There are several suggestions, including teaming up with the mystical supervillain team the Pact in order to even the odds. But Control, the director of the superspy organization UNTIL, wants the Posse to learn more about the Zodiac. There's just one problem: two of the active members on duty don't have supervillain identities. The first is cowboy with alien technology Union Galactic, who disguises himself as the cyborg samurai Strongarm. The second is a new superhero, a young teenage superheroine Bubblegum. She poses as a burglar-villain called the Black Spider, but is worried that her bubblegum-related powers might give her away.
The group is contacted by the Zodiac's leader, Taurus, and given an assignment to prove their worth as franchise members. Bialya, a rogue state in the Middle East, is arranging to buy a WMD from VIPER, an international terrorist organization. Taurus wants the WMD for himself. Abrasax (in his guise as Baron Von Bloodlust), Strongarm, and Black Spider go to Bialya. They are accompanied by Sagittarius, formerly Arrowhead, who is monitoring their activities for the Zodiac. The Ferret secretly follows them, unbeknownst to Sagittarius.
After "stealing" the Posse's aircraft, the heroes go to Bialya and insert themselves into the presidential palace under the guise of catering staff for the nation's independence day celebration. They manage to overhear plans for the transfer of the WMD between VIPER and Colonel Rustam, director of Bialya's Post-Human Resources Division. The heroes head out to the off-shore oil rig where the trade will take place and rig it with several traps. Rustam shows up with his two post-human bodyguards, Manticore and Sirocco. VIPER appears in a mini-sub bearing several crates of weapons and one "special package." The heroes trigger explosions and gum-traps on the platform, causing mass confusion. Rustam and his agents begin to battle VIPER, and the heroes grab Rustam's payment, hijack the sub, grab the weapons and the package, and get back to their plane.
On the way back, the Ferret opens the special container to find a small, human baby. He switches the baby for some technobabble material that Patchwork and Mr. Eternity had created (as NPC's), and the baby is secretly handed over mid-air to Dr. Mind (again, an NPC at the time) while Sagittarius is distracted by the awkward advances of Union Galactic.
The fake package and 15% of Rustam's money is turned over to Taurus, and the heroes quickly head back to the Posse's base to figure out what to do about the baby.
GM's note: One of the real pleasures of this adventure was that through complete coincidence the PC's that would have been truly effective--Samkhara or Ghost Raven, who had Covert abilities and Criminal contacts; Dr. Mind and his mental powers; or Patchwork and Mr. Eternity with their technical abilities--were all absent. Instead the group had to work with their limited talents to try to be superspies instead. The switch-out at the end, which they had planned from the beginning, had a great "Leverage" feel to it, and the stress of trying to pull the wool of Sagitarrius' eyes the entire time finally created a sense of tension often missing in the campaign. What's more, the group managed to avoid combat for the most part, which is really more a success than a failure in my mind.
Comments always welcome!
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