One of the great things that I really appreciate about being part of the role-playing game community, and the wider nerd community in general, is the opportunity to meet a lot of cool, interesting people.

Last night I ran a City of Mist one-shot in my home at the request of a friend of mine, Daniel, who’s an active member of the RPG meetup that I run, the Chicago Alternative RPG Meetup (CARM). Daniel’s friend, Debs, was visiting from Vancouver and he had never had the chance to game with her before.

Debs from the geek band Debs & Errol.

For you pop culture nerds out there, Debs was one half of a Toronto-based geek band called Debs & Errol. They’re no longer active together as a band but still maintain a loyal fan base. And while Debs doesn’t currently focus on the genre of geek music, she still maintains her inner geek spirit. She’s also a fan of D&D who had never tried playing any other RPG systems so Daniel wanted her to have a chance to try something different as well as just have the opportunity to game together. My GMing schedule (and all the prepping that goes along with it) keeps me pretty busy but Daniel’s a good friend and I wanted to accommodate so we agreed that I’d run a one-shot of City of Mist, a game we both like.

city of mist

This particular one-shot is an adventure I wrote myself and have run a million times so I know it like the back of my hand.

Debs brought her travel companion, Dan (not the same guy as my friend, Daniel), from Ontario, Canada. It turned out he was also an RPG fan and had run City of Mist many times as a GM, though he had never actually played it, so he was excited to finally experience the game as a player. We also invited a fellow CARM member Kris who’s someone we both love playing with and who had also never played City of Mist before.

city of mist - dan
Debs’ friend Dan, who had previous run City of Mist but never played it himself.

Fast forward to the actual game and everyone’s having a grand time. As usual when we have players new to a game, we spent some time choosing pregenerated characters and going over the rules. We then got right into the actual game. There was natural chemistry between the players and I thought they did a great job with the scenario, making a module that I’d run so many times feel fresh again for me too. And one of the most gratifying moments for me, as the GM, was when Debs expressed that as much as she likes D&D, she had even more fun playing City of Mist, and that whereas her playing style in her D&D games is usually passive, here she found herself naturally playing her character in a more proactive, creative way.

After the game we all got a very nice treat as Debs treated us to a couple of her songs. I had a guitar lying around and the subject of music came up, whereupon Daniel asked Debs if she’d be willing to sing us a song or two. She graciously agreed and we got to hear an acoustic version of “Tie After Tie,” a Debs & Errol parody of Cyndi Laupers’ “Time After Time” which is about the trench run in Star Wars: A New Hope. This was a real treat.

I really enjoyed meeting Debs and Dan and I hope the rest of their trip in Chicago was a good one. And, guys, if you’re seeing this post, I want to remind you that my invitation to come back to my house the next time you’re in Chicago will always remain open. Just name whatever game you guys want to play and I’ll run it!

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