Monday, January 19, 2009

The Long Lost Boys

GM: Erik Andersen

Blurb: “The boys on the island vary, of course, in numbers, according as they get killed and so on; and when they seem to be growing up, which is against the rules, Peter thins them out…” - Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie

System: less

My Character: Match, leader of the Lost Boys in Peter's abscence. The oldest, strongest and bravest among them. Bearer of Peter's sword.

Review: Some games are forgettable, some you'd rather forget, some are good but nothing special, some are great, some are even better. A very very few are transcendant, their memory lasting for years to come. This was one of those.

Peter has been away from Neverland for eight years. In that time things have become relatively peaceful. The pirates are gone, the indians have settled down, even the lions, tigers and bears exist in harmony with the island's other inhabitants. The lost boys have grown older, if not yet grown up, and the nature of some of their games has begun to change.

But now a chill wind blows, and a familiar crow is heard. Peter is returning and the island begins to wake...

Everything about this game was excellent. In most systemless games there comes a time when you feel that you miss some sort of mechanic to add a sense of danger or to resolve a conflict. Even the *thought* of this didn't arise in this game, though. The essence of the game was that a fairy visited and reminded each of the Lost Boys exactly what they would lose with the return of Peter. The boys had to decide whether they would stand against Peter's return - especially when doing so meant standing beside a certain 'Dark and sinister man'.

Two of these amazing things about this game:
1. Everything was *so* cinematic, helped by the amount of time everyone spent in character. Just about every scene played in my mind like it was up on a movie screen.
2. The incredible balance struck between the innocence and the fantasy element, and the darkness in what Peter represented and the moral choices that had to be made. It resonated perfectly with the original story.

Highlights: The cucumber hunt, the fight against the panther, the meeting with the fairy, the flying, the fight with the pirates, Peter's return, the capture of Tinker Bell, the vitriolic showdown with James (played by Marcus)... oh hell, the whole damn thing!

Notes: My only regret was that I couldn't work in the (you guessed it) romantic subplot between my character and I-won't (the resident female Lost Boy) who had recently given Match a thimble.

Erik, very deservedly IMO, picked up the award for best rated individual session for this game.

An event from this session (nominated by myself) also won the best individual nomination award for this CMOA:

Delivered ice-cold as the character crushed the above fairy by clapping his hands together "I don't believe in fairies"


  1. Thanks heaps for the positive feedback! You show down with James was one of the crowning moments in my mind.

    The romantic sub-plot is there as part of the whole growing up theme, and of the 3 times I've run that game, only once has it come up really.

  2. A note from Marcus (who played James) in an email he just sent me (and one I wholly agree with):

    Of course playing wise, TLLB was the best one-off session I’ve played – probably ever… [snip]
    I sort of wish I could bottle that magic up forever and use it in small doses in the future! You know, just thinking back on it, for a couple of hours there on the evening I really did feel like a Lost Boy myself… but like the boys themselves I had to come back and continue to grow-up :P