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Kick Off! - A Claremont Adventure


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The start of the school year 2016/2017 at Claremont Academy will be a bit unconventional! While the traditional Kick Off Dance will still happen, it will not happen uninterrupted! Students of Elysian Academy have their own nefarious plans, and will show up at the dance to put them into action! And it will be up to Claremont’s students to stop them.



"Sales Pitch" :



The Kick-Off Dance happens at the beginning of the school year according to Hero High. This would be a great moment to get interrupted by a villain, for some Team-Up potential between the PCs (and possibly NPCs too). Now, there’s just one issue:

Why would anybody interrupt an event that will clearly have a lot of supers running around? Obviously it wouldn’t be a mindless attack, but something with a greater plan. Like possibly, as a few others brought up, a Diversion, for example to draw away security from other areas of the school and get something from there. (Student Records? A macguffin? )

This would probably work as a way to set up a longer plot, a huge attack at the beginning of the year, and then trying to figure out who/why and so on afterwards, during the year. Since it’d be tied to some degree of mystery, it would also allow smaller threads to tie into it, and possibly open up other plots spinning off from it.

The two reasons I thought about it were, A) Having a plot which would allow for a fair few threads going on, and B) Team-Ups! Actual teams, or just cliques! Maybe just one, maybe multiple with rivalries and all the things that come with them! A few people have shown interest in getting a team, with uniforms and all, going for Claremonters, and this would be a nice way to set it up.

Now, problems and concerns:

It’d be a huge event, affecting canon, big parts of the site and possibly a lot of PCs.

It could interfere with plans other may have had for future threads, but it should also be possible to work around this one.

It could interfere with plans for events, which would be more difficult to balance out and work around.

This would be a big thing, probably even a multi-thread event to make sure as many Claremont PCs as players want can be involved, which would obviously mean some coordination would be required.

There’d need to be some things ironed out, like motivations, exactly how many PCs and antagonists are involved, reasons why other heroes wouldn’t respond to Claremont being attacked, and so on. All possible, but something that would probably work best with multiple people cooperating and exchanging ideas.

The issue of running it all. Both in the sense of GMing where I would be up for it, but since it would involve quite an amount of canon elements, it might be best if a ref were to do it?  And also in the sense of the threads. Combat threads take quite a while, after all.




So, Kick Off. It started as a small idea, as a way to have some of the Claremont PCs team up. It went from there, and became something a bit bigger. The core idea still is the same : A way for PCs to team up, while actively fighting things! There’s more surrounding it now, however. A way to set up rivalries with the students of Elysian Academy, also known as Shadow Academy. And, if the thread goes well enough, a way to set up a connected plot. Something that’ll last for a while, something that connects various threads, both big ones, and if people feel up for it, smaller ones. Now, having others give their opinions and ideas will make the entire thing run smoother, and allow for people to be more involved in it, so there’ll be a lot of things for you all to comment on!



Now, organizational things:


The entire thing is barely more than a concept at this moment, and I want to incorporate other players into the process of turning it into an actual thread. Many things will depend on which characters are involved, how many of them are involved and so on.

Generally, since it’ll be something that would affect all of Claremont, any Claremont PC works, and having many going around means there’s more potential for future plots to follow. I want to give everybody a chance to play their characters. Speaking from experience, there’s also some issues involved with having a large amount of characters, more on that further down.


For the sake of momentum, pace and not having the threads drag on, I’d probably handle it with a few threads, happening parallel to each other. Generally speaking, the amount of threads and characters per thread will depend primarily on how many people want to get their characters involved. I have rough ideas for two to three threads, all handling different parts of what is happening, but I can always increase/decrease that number depending on interest.


Some things where player input is appreciated:


The rivalries mentioned above obviously work best if there is something that connects the two rivals, be it, for example, similar powers, similar upbringing, or the fact the two of them have nothing in common. Sure, not everybody will find a rival based on that (some might not find a rival at all, or multiple), but it would be cool to have a few rivalries happening, some recurring characters to use in future threads.


 Now, I could just go, look at everybody’s sheets, and quickly whip up something. But, since these are characters that might have a lasting influence on the PCs over the course of multiple threads, it feels better to do it a different way. If you have an idea, a concept, anything really, that you feel would work great as an antagonist to your character, write it down! It doesn’t have to be much, a single sentence is enough!


Another part of it is the story. I do a fair bit of improvising when it comes to long-term stories, but the attackers having a good reason for what they do is really important. They’re putting themselves right into the Lion’s Den, they know exactly what they’re there for and have planned it out. In the Sales Pitch I mentioned a few ideas that came up when discussing this in chat, the attack being a diversion so they could steal an important item, student records, or something else. 


But, there could be a lot of other reasons! Essentially, if you have an idea for why they could be doing this, write it down too! The more ideas, the better! Maybe you have an idea for the item they’d try to steal in the diversion mentioned above, maybe you have an idea for an entirely different motivation altogether! More ideas mean that it’s more likely that in the end, there is a believable reason!


If you have other ideas, concerns and so on, bring them up too! In this thread, in chat, per PM, whatever way you prefer! The more, the better!

As a quick thing to add: This will happen around early september, so there's not a lot of hurry!

Edited by olopi
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This sounds great, olopi! 


We're already doing a Murder League thing in Final Exam, so it could be connected to that - or something independent! 


Rivalries might depend on what PCs make it into the thread, I think. Who all is likely to be in the incoming class/visiting in that thread?


As far as reasons for why they're infiltrating the school, hmm! 


Student records seems plausible enough - ideally we stop that from happening. OTOH, that might be redundant with existing threads. Maybe what they're after is a Next-Gen/Young Freedom trophy, a McGuffin artifact their bosses want?


There's also the sacrificial lamb aspect - maybe their instructors are testing Claremont and have filled up their heads with stories of how easy it'll be to pull the wool over the eyes of these stupid sheep...

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Well I think a different goal for each thread all tied by one overarching goal might be a way to go.  Like the Elysian Academy instructors in a 80's frat movie style plot indicate to students desperate to prove themselves worthy that targeting claremont would be impressive.


So the Academy students break off in groups effectively competing to prove their squad is best.  The big bruisers all team up to just crash the Dance itself, a select group of heroes at the dance have to fight them off, possibly raise the stakes by them or another group spiking hte punch with some kind of nullifier so the NPC students are powerless and need protecting (Even ones that are jerks!  Proving Heroes help even people they don't like)  So that would be the big four color superbrawl for hte characters that works for.  Maybe some of the sneaker super-normals decide raiding records is the way to go to get family info as some of these kids must be kids of supers by now and threatening parents is a trop less fraught than threatening boy/girlfriends/kids on an OOC level.  They have to be stopped by a small group of students who can't go to the dance (Breakfast club detention group maybe?)  Maybe a third group of the more mystically inclined Academy students use the above to try and target the mystic history of Claremont trying to free/shackle/command the burning ghost, a student or two of Seven are tasked with monitoring the wards for any trouble while she's out of town (and are SUPPOSED to contact her to TP back if anything happens, but of course deal with it themselves)


I mean it varies a bit on the groups that end up getting put together but it's an option both to get some rivalries going and there are ways to split claremont groups up into teams players want them to form or to get some players face time with characters they don't normally have opportunity to RP with.

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This would be fun to involve Nevermore in. Maybe he's with the "punishment detail", or maybe he's just wandering the grounds looking dapper in a suit, who knows. I feel like he *could* go anywhere, but the sneaky stuff is most natural, while the next best option is the Brawl (he uses no powers, so is not very slowed down by a lack there).


Alternatively he could come back from a patrol, realize there are SHENANIGANS afoot, and start helping out, making him one of the very few folks in-costume. 

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Gauss, especially at her current skills, is probably best for the main brawl.  Then again, having her act as a human EMP to wreck the external drive the sneakier hacker types would have copied student registry to might also be a decent idea.

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I don't have a Claremonter at the moment but I do intend to get one going in August, and I'd love to get him in here. I don't have a lot to contribute here, though; he's a robot man made of US military hardware and alien programming, if that helps anyone's brainstorming.

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Okay, lots of interesting things to conisder have been mentioned, and I'll be spending a fair bit of time thinking and talking with people to work out some more precise plans!

Now, while I'm doing that (feel free to still add more suggestions regardless), there's some other things to consider:



Yes, arguably the most important thing, the characters. A few people have already mentioned how theirs could fit in.

Now, everybody that wants their character in can write it down! There's always open spots, so there's no hurry, but them being early is appreciated, because of the Rivals mentioned in the opening post.


Now, not everybody needs one. Some people might have some already, some people might not want them. But, if you feel your character could have a rival, a student going to the Shadow Academy that they cross paths with surprisingly often, then write them down too!


It doesn't have to be much, perhaps a single sentence containing a rough idea. Maybe you had/have a cool idea for a character that could have some conflicts with yours. Perhaps you found a concept in one of the many build threads, one that looks interesting enough to see in play as an antagonist. Maybe you feel one of the  Shadow Academy Students mentioned in Hero High 3E  could work! Maybe something else! All I need's a sentence or two, and I can craft something.


There'll be more after this, once I have some more plans. Things like what PCs show up where, thread structure, and so on. But, those are things to deal with once their prerequesites have been dealt with!


Regarding the Shadow Academy Students: Since I'm not sure on the legal status of sharing anything about them (even my own 2 sentence descriptions), I'll avoid any descriptions. If you don't own the book and are interested in them, I'm sure we can work something out per PM.


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     Might you need anyone to write for an NPC/ Rival? I know that I wouldn't be owning the character long-term, but I think it would be a cool way to get posts, as I do not have a Claremont character (and I am so unused to the style here that it seems to take about 6 weeks to get a character I create properly adapted.), and/or a kind of 'writing test'...

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My Claremonter is now sitting in the C-Bank waiting for approval, but I still don't have a rival or real adventure idea for Chrome. I don't know why he would be involved in a big fight like this! He's not even good enough at hacking to hack the hackerbox.


EDIT: An idea that occurs to me about his Shadow Academy rival; it could be someone that was unwillingly augmented. Think Adam Jensen "I didn't ask for this" taken to Cyborg levels; a sneaky individual with enough augmentations to make his attacks hurt. That could be a good counter and rival to Chrome's more straightforward smashiness.

Edited by Raveled
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Pacer and Stalwart's rivals kind of write themselves. What better rivals for a hyperactive speedster and a self-controlled powerhouse than flipping the two adjectives and the genders? An impulsive pretty female powerhouse and an unflappable male speedster. Done.


Waverider is...harder. I've actually never thought about it. She's a placid girl and it's not easy to get under her skin. I'm thinking it'd take someone as arrogant as the day is long. The Practical Darwinist approach comes to mind. Fictional group who believe that survival of the fittest should apply at all times on an individual basis. Don't need doctors or rescue workers. That kind of thing. One of those might find Naomi being treated exactly the same as anyone else to be horribly offensive. or you could take the low hanging fruit and just have it be a scumbag sonic controller. Just the skeeviest possible dude.

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The easy answer for Nevermore is a Lady Cat Burglar. (Animal theme yet to be determined.)


Bonus points if they meet outside of costume, and have a verbal fencing match. (Aleksander would be horribly outclassed.)


Alternatively, like I suggested above, if Alek is at the dance itself and the powerhouses bust in while there are depowered folks, he could fight a delaying action. 

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Okay, I should probably post an update now that I have started to work on the various NPCs!

So, I’m still undecided on some things, but this is where I’m standing at right now:

The attack is primarily a way for the Academy’s students to prove themselves, to prove that their training’s good for something, while also functioning as a way to get something from Claremont’s storage.


The main super-brawl :  I’m not quite sure how to handle this just yet, since taking out the NPC students is pretty much necessary, but only having the non-powered PCs here would tie them all up, thus not allowing them to be in other threads. Maybe the PCs just get lucky? Maybe not all Students are taken out? I’m still trying to figure this one out, since a big brawl does feel appropriate, but limiting it to non-powered PCs would make it rather narrow.


Sneaky things: A few Shadow Academy Students break into the more secure areas of the school, in order to get Records/A trophy/MacGuffin. I’m leaning towards MacGuffin right now, perhaps one that also plays into the other two? (A mystical scrying stone?) Unfortunately for them, a few PCs manage to see traces of them breaking in, so it’s up to the PCs to track down and find the thieves before they get what they want and get away!


Those are the ideas that I feel would work no matter what! For others, it would depend on the PCs, since something involving Magic (to take durf’s example) wouldn’t work too well without Mythical-based PCs. So, if there’s any suggestions or things that you feel your PC could do, I could use ‘em! Maybe a few NPCs fly off right as the brawl happens, so there’s a separate fight going on above the school?


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Exaccus, Facsimile's an easy one!


He turns into things, faces someone who turns other people into other things, or who copies the things other people can do with a twiiiiiist, or who is stuck in one super-form but has gotten real real good at it, and Alex has to switch things up to keep from any one form being overpowered. Or maybe he just fights a literal facsimile of something, like a "younger" copy of the robot hero Galatea.

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Well, if the power-drain is because of spiked punch, maybe everyone who's actively in that Brawl didn't drink punch? Maybe they had water, or soda, or maybe they happened to randomly eat a few snacks in a random order such that the power-neutralizing chemical was itself neutralized?


Final Exam and Feathers in their Caps are sort of "holodeck gone wrong" scenarios, Rav, but it has merit. 


As for the target in Sneaky Things, I'd bounce that off the Refs; there's probably an item or 3 that are nominally trophies but secretly a bit more potent than just shiny metal things...

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I'm in, and here's a thought - bait and switch villainy.  Primary goal, wreak havoc, which everyone knows.  Secondary goal, steal a student file or a precious 17th century MacGuffin, known to only a small team of bad guys.   But one of the intruders has a third goal, known only to him/herself - plant a plot device.  A bug, a bomb, communicator for a secret turncoat, whatever.  After all, when the dust settles, everyone will be noticing what the thieves were after, whether they got it or not.  Nobody will then be looking for something that got left...


As for a rival for Mammoth, here, I was EXACTLY thinking of a mystically inclined rogue, someone with a snake-based theme.  I'm planning on putting the big lug through some changes later on - maybe much later - and serpents will figure prominently...


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Ouroboros is clocking in at PL12 these days so might be a bit high in the PL spread as it stands but if you're interested in setting up a rivalry a rival magician is easy as would be a 'Monster' hunter type since he's a Dhampir, or an evil vampire trying to capture him for some vampiric ritual or prophecy like his parents have always warned him about.  

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Okay, as I have just been informed, school on the East Coast is starting/has already started. So, I need to hurry up just a bit.

Now, for the actual threads:


I’m thinking of 2 brawls. One happening at the Dance itself, one happening outside. Perhaps it’s people walking around the grounds catching a second group, perhaps it’s the main attacker’s back-up group. Perhaps the fight just immediately spills out into 2 fights? Of course, the closer the two are happening, the more there has to be a suspension of disbelief when it comes to not joining in on the other fight, but it should be possible! Then there’s the stealthy break-in / selfish plans thread!


With PCs I’m thinking something along the lines of:


Brawl 1 (Prom): Pacer/Stalwart, Mammoth, Chrome,  Open (1-2)

Brawl 2: Facsimile, Gauss, Bird of Arms, Waverider,  Open (1 more tops)

Stealthy: Nevermore, Ouroboros, 1-2 others


To be assigned: Frostbyte


That should allow everybody to get a spot, and I can always whip up a third thread should it come up! The reasoning behind putting Nevermore and Ouroboros in the Stealthy thread is two-fold: First of all the characters I have thought up as rivals for them probably fit there best, also it puts two of the high-PL characters in the same thread, so there is less of a balancing thing!


So, for the sign up: Just post which one you’d see your character in, and I should be able to work on the thread starts! Maybe take a look at other’s PL so there’s not too much of a balancing problem, but I can always give out HPs and use various techniques to not make it too much of a problem!

Edited by olopi
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