The Dark Tower
This campaign is inspired by a pletora of books/movies of science-fiction, horror, fantasy, war, cyberpunk. The major source of inspiration is the saga “The Dark Tower” by Stephen King. Other authors are Philip Dick, Tolkien, Silverberg, Asimov, Galouye, Newman, Sturgeon, Vonnegut, Primo Levi, David Gerrold, Paul Di Filippo, Harris, Kubrick, Argento, Carpenter, Bava, Leone, etc. I’m roleplaying with my friends at this campaign since 2005, and it yet is going on. One word about my english: it sucks!! Sorry. I hope you understand!
GERMANY, 1975 The Axis won the war. New Germany, former Berlin, has 15 million citizens. In 1954 its astronauts went into space, in 1964 landed on the moon. The Millenary Reich to rule a territory from the former France to the border with the China and from the former Scandinavian peninsula to Cecenia. In the 1944, three A1, missiles with a warhead of two tons of air-fuel esplosive stroke Boston, London and Moscow. The Angloamerican signed a truce with the Germany, but the they won the war against the Japaneses, in 1946. In the same year Moscow was being turned into artificial lake! The boss of the SS is Reinhard Heydrich (former chief Reich Security Main Office). Himmler was killed by auto-bomb in the 1965. Hitler is yet alive, though he’s 86 year old. Doenitz is the dauphin of Hitler. In Spain, after the death of Franco, there’s the civil war. Italy is carved up. Up the Gustav Line, there is the Fascist regime. Mussolini is yet alive, but very ill. Down the Gustav line there is a angloamerican protectorate. The two parts are carved up by a tall wall. Continuous terroristic attacks toss the cities of the Reich, mostly chechen bombs and kamikaze. It’s going to begin the invasion of the China. This is only one possible beginning of my campaign. Imagine Hitler killed in the Great War: the comunism, maybe, would have conquered the Western Europe. The Soviet Empire would spread from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Maybe would have stroke the angloamerican with a few atomic (or Hydrogen, or Gamma, or Plutonium) bombs. What if the Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union had destroy one another with weapons of mass destruction? Maybe, in the race of the conquest of Europe, USA and UK would have struggled!! I suggest you reading “The man in the high castle” by Dick, “Fatherland” by Harris, seeing “Doctor Strangelove” by Kubrick ,etc. for ucronic science fiction. These are only a few possibilities. The main thing is there is a “Cold war” between two super-potence.
FIRST PART: “PROJECT: BREAKERS”
This was the preface of my campaign. If one chooses the history where the Nazi Germany won the war, the PCs are being called by, really, Reinhard Heydrich, the boss of SS for a covert operation. A american universitary course come in Bologna, Italy, for visiting the oldest university of the world, the university of jurisprudence. Three undergraduates are identical to the PCs. The PCs must go to Bologna, kill the students, replace them and plant in the city of R’rley, in the east coast of United States of America. The goal of this action is finding out and killing another student, Longinus Smith. The operation is named “Project: Breakers”. Once in R’rley, the PCs end up in a nightmare: odd manifestations, monsters. They discover they aren’t the only one to pursue Longinus. There are strange creature (“Corpse Kissers” from “GURPS Creatures of the night”) who acclaim the “Crimson King”. They discover one their professor is hybrib Bale (from “Gurps Fantasy Folk”)/ Corpse Kissers who possesses magic powers! In the meantime, another german spy, resembling Danny Devito, approach the PCs, giving them aid. The spy could be a janitor of the campus, or another professor, or the like. The PCs must beware the chief of the local police, former green beret of WWII. Pheraps he did understand everything, and begin to stalk the characters… In the meanwhile, the PCs have to find out Longinus. Once they come into the room of Longinus, they end up in a library, full of books by Stephen King, Edgar Allan Poe, Richard Matheson, H.P. Lovercraft and the like. But… the books are totally blank!! Where is Longinus? Not in its room… What if he were in the old house, in Victorian style, on cliff of the cost, to hide himself from the Crimson King’s thugs? If the PCs cannot grasp where is Longinus, pheraps the german spy can give them a hand, by directing them. Once in the house the PCs are being catapulting into a dreamlike world; the Gm can choose a setting from the books of its favorite horror writer: King, Matheson, Poe, Barker, Lovecraft. I choose King: my PCs end up into an expanse of corn, with rows taller than a man. Soon they are being attacked by a bunch of children, with wild eyes, hymning to “He Who Walks Behind the Rows”. Gone over the children and the rows, the PCs end up into a clearing, intersected by a street, which separates the PCs from a service station, full of terrified people. In the middle of the street, there is a corpse, crushed and a rumbling car. In the distance other motor vehicles. It is the machine’s riot!! In front of the PCs, beyond the street and the station, over an hill, there is an old, snow-covered house, identical to the one where the PCs first entered. If the PCs manage to approach the house, they can see a man, with a hatchet in hand, who enter in the house. He repeats “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”. If the PCs elect to pursue the man, they will see the man who strikes a door with the hatchet. Beyond the door there is a girl covered with blood. She’s a powerful telekinetic psionic and she will attack the PCs by throwing mentally cook’s knives. Surpassed this obstacle, are faced with a staircase which, as within an Escher painting, rises ad infinitum. During the ascent, the PCs can see various images: a man crawling in a narrow conduct full of foulness; four kids ahead a corpse; a woman chained at the bed; a rabid Saint Bernard dog wandering the streets of a desert city, etc. At the end of the starcase, it open a large room. In the midst there is a man, seated on a throne made out of written paper. He looks like Jesus Christ!! Once the PCs approach the man, half a dozen creatures rise. They are “Wither Zombies” (from Gurps Creatures of the Night). In the meanwhile Longinus attacks the PCs with a few “Mental Stabs” (from Gurps Psionics”). I hope the PCs manage kill Longinus!! Once killed Longinus, the PCs end up in the old, run-down house where first entered. Then they encounter the german spy resembling Devito, who tells them their job is not finished. They have to kill others “Breakers” scattered all over the east coast of United States. He provide them a car (a Fiat cinquecento). Within the baggage car, there are a few firearms (a few handpistols and two shotguns) and three bullet-proof vests. The others Breakers stay in New York, Philadelphia, Baltimora, Dover, Annapolis. They are a pirokinetic boss of the Mafia, a little girl with powerful telepathic ability, an autistic child with Psychic Vampirism (from Gurps Psionics), a old psychic healer. In New York, which should be the conclusive stage of the american journey, the PCs can find out one CIA recruiting centre for psychic talents! They can break into it thanks to a nazi commando covertly operating in the area. Of course, as well the Corpsekissers stalk the Breakers and, consequently, the PCs. Beware! These monsters could have meta-human powers! The GM should allow the PCs find out the local base of the Corpsekissers: it stand below a cafeteria named “The Laughing Pig”. It’s alive!! It is a Maze Worm (from Gurps Creatures of the Night). Both the cafeteria and the being are full of Corpsekissers. They are eating crap!! After a devastanting battle, the PCs should prevail over the monsters and somehow to come back in Germany. But the “Project: Breakers” is not over. There are Breakers throughout the world. It would be entertaining if Heydrich sended the PCs in the most turbolent areas of the planet: Spain (where the U.S. military gives Republican Forces a helping hand against Francoist guerrilla, while nazi commandos support the latter); China (where it’s started a new german “blitzkrieg” as the PCs were in United States and the nazis has been opposed by, in addition to Chinese Army, commandos of Navy Seals and Rangers of U.S. Army); Chechnya (where the PCs will have to struggle against muslim “terrorism”). Just in Chechnya there’s a terrorist… Its name is “Crimson King”... It is the boss of Corpsekissers?? In a poor town crushed by the nazi domination, struck by the cannons of the German Army trying kill the terrorist, the PCs will have to face any sorts of odd aberration (from Gurps Creatures of the Night, Fantasy Bestiary and Space Bestiary): in addition of a lot of Corpsekissers, struggling against scheletrical soldiers, with glowing eyes, which wear modern soviet uniform, a huge red dragon hovers above the city. It will attack whatever approaches a castle in ruins. Within the building, there is the “King”... He is quite mad… he has devastanting mental powers… he is able to make real its fantasies. He will awake any sort of abomination. While the PCs deal with its monsters, the King, protected by the spell “Missile Shield” (from Gurps Magic), starts to say: “I have seen him! He has touched me in my dreams! There are worlds, infinite world… other than this! He is… He is…” It’s possible the terrorist was talking about the true Crimson King? This is the last section of the first part. Once the PCs come back to home, soon they are hunted!! A morning, someone ring for a PC. If he open the door, they will find, on the ground, a notebook. Within it there are about fifty names, all but five, crossed out. Three of the five names are the PCs. The PC recognizes a few crossed out names. They are spies or commandos sended to kill the Breakers!! Another ring at the door. Three men of the Gestapo, which want enter… A manhunt starts. The GM should see movies like “The Day of the Jackal” or “Three Day of the Condor” before play this section. The only safe place is the headquarters of the SS. The notebook has been dropped by the SS agents to advise the remaining Breaker killers. If the PCs don’t realize this and don’t get to Heydrich, this person will send a few agents to help them. Once in the SS headquarters, Heydrich will illustrate the order to eliminate the Breaker killers has been given by Boorman, personally. Heydrich send the PCs on another mission. In the lowest floors of the “Tower of Babel”, the greatest Institute of Researche of the world, there’is a door, shining with 13 different colors…
SECOND PART: THERE ARE OTHER WORLDS… The descent into the meanders of the Institute is supposed not to be easy… Tens of soldiers guard the entrances to the laboratory. Once in the bottom, the PCs find a door, 6 feet tall, shining with 13 different colors… Each color leads to one different, uncanny destination.
BLUE If the PCs enter the door when it is blue, they end up in a city, a big and sprawling city. Imagine the toy’s city of the film “A.I.” by Steven Spielberg. Suddenly, they encounter a bunch of motorcyclists who shoot one another. The bikers