Beginning with an introduction that sets the scene for the game - monsters are real, the characters have come to realise it and have taken matters into their own hands to deal with them - and for the concept of what role-playing is about, it then looks over the basics of the Storytelling System game mechanics. Although summarised here, most is kept to the adventure itself and the character sheets provided, so that rules are only brought to your attention when they are needed. Still it's a good summary, particularly if you are unfamiliar with the system or haven't played it in a while.
Next comes a more detailed exposition of the situation. For the purposes of this game, the characters are already aware that monsters exist; but as their players might not be familiar with the 'New World of Darkness' setting, some of what is going on is explained here. Hunter organisation is complex, because - perhaps fearing ridicule - most Hunters don't like to admit to what they do, so they operate in cells (small groups like the characters in this adventure) who may have links with others in compacts and even larger groups called conspiracies. However, the adventure itself is intended to take the characters deep into the World of Darkness... so not too much is explained here!
The basic idea of the adventure is the hunt for a serial killer who turns out to be... well, shall we say not just a normal psychopath. It's clearly presented for even a novice GM to run, but obviously a Storyteller familiar with the New World of Darkness will find it easy to make the whole thing come alive.
The characters are brought into the case on account of their being police officers, indeed new members of a special unit set up to deal with unusual cases. (Oddly, I have been running a campaign on this premise using White Wolf's Tales from the 13th Precinct for the past year, now this new game is going to fit in very nicely to develop that campaign further!) There are plenty of good ideas for running what is in effect a 'police procedural' at the outset, which should enable you to run it well and get the characters involved and feeling that they can actually accomplish something.
A nice touch is that some of the major NPCs are provided with detailed write-ups and complete character sheets - as they are people the characters could expect to interact with on a day-to-day basis they could prove useful if you use this adventure as a springboard into your own games. Likewise, the characters provided for your players are well-detailed and presented and should serve well as either exemplars or even characters that your players might want to stick with. There's also a blank characters sheet - perhaps someone has their own ideas of what they want to play, or you might have more than 3 players to accommodate so need to make more characters to provide for them.
Overall, this is an excellent introduction to what bodes well to be a fascinating part of the New World of Darkness.
Return to Quickstart 1: The Hunt page.
Reviewed: 1 August 2008