The Awakening - any good?



Has anyone read the new Awakening adventure? Is it any good?

(I've tried Full Eagle City and the Sleeping Kin modules - great plot and story if it were a novel, but if players want to actually think....way too railroady for me)

I don't have Awakened yet, but I do plan to pick it up at Gen Con in a couple of weeks.

I played through Full Eagle Day, and my players are still complaining about how railroaded they were... especially towards the end. I am currently making things up with oddities while they patrol, and plan to use the structured adventures as a baseline in the future while continuing to throw odd crimes at them. It should keep my players busy, and it's quite possible they will miss early hints on the adventure. If that happens, I'll play it out in my head and have npc judges respond. The story can continue and the players can join it if they want, or not.

Hopefully it'll work out. Anyway, once I have had a chance to read through Awakened, I'll let you know what I think. I have a feeling it'll be similar to the other published adventures though. The story is great, but the whole modules should probably be used as a guide.

I am about halfway through running the Awakening, and there is more player choice in the senario, but I may have to railroad them slightly to get them onto the next Prog - they missed out on looking up some information at the end of Prog 5.
All in all, if you have a psi in the party, you definately need to check out what psi powers they have, and expect them to use them - my psi had psychometry, and used it in Prog 1
on the spikes holding the tortured perp down
, so I had to make something up on the spot, other than that, it runs OK.
All three of my judges were Street Judges (it's what they wanted) when I ran through Full Eagle Day, but one of the judges created a new character after graudation to be a Psi (perfect time for it really). I'm looking forward to seeing the kind of trouble we can get into with this.

I think any story has to railroad the players a little... I guess it's just a case of disguising any railroading. I mean, if there is a countdown to an event, and the judges wander off on sidequests... so be it. If they continue to avoid the adventure control could repeat a call for judges to investigate something... or a senior judge could ride by and tell them to join him... alternatively, they could stay destracted and indirectly cause a massive explosion of whatever to occur. They could then get heavilly scolded by the sector chief and put on traffic duty of catch wagon duty as punishment. That'll make them think twice before blatently avoiding the adventure next time.

In fact, you could then have an adventure where the players go around in the catch wagon, collecting perps, getting laughed at by other judges, and generally made to feel bad... but then something happens... like as they uncuff a perp from the holding post, a crew of sky surfers come speeding down, knocking the player judges over, and rescuing their buddy.

Sorry I'm getting a little off topic...

I just got the Awakening this weekend and have read it (and rewritten some of the handouts so I don't have to cut up the book nd made them look a little more official... i have them on a MS Publisher file if anyone wants a copy - I have done handouts 1 - 9...) - I have to say it reads really well though does seem pretty linear.

I won't be running it for about a month as we are still halfway through my adaptation of the Dredd novel Black Atlantic (tonight one of my players accidentally got himself killed whilst trying to hide behing another Judge who was doing all the heroics... in fact the whole team of 5 was almost wiped out - I had to have my creature back off a bit and attack the one who had the most hit points or the whole squad would have died and it would have been game over - I think I made the creature a bit too powerful for them... oops!) Anyway, this adventure still has another 3 or 4 sessions to go, but as soon as they return to Mega City One, it's straight into The Awakening!

A tip for railroading - have the players think they have been really clever in getting any clues which direct them to a particular place, and do throw in extra (preferably non-dangerous) encounters which have nothing to do with the main plot - your game may take a couple of extra sessions but eventually all roads should lead them to exactly were you want them :>

I hate having to resort to Control getting on the radio and saying, 'Go to this location and arrest this particular perp' - that's not very intereesting. Much better to have the team find the perps name through a nark or through a 'lucky' data access roll... even for them to have to spend a couple of hours making no progress on a case before they realise where they should be going.
True, but I meant that control could say something more like: "Reports of shots being fired at Hampton Hills". It's more of a nudge in the right direction rather than picking the players up and putting them where you want them. They might be busy with something else, maybe an npc judge responds before they can...

Control can be used to enhance the game, but it is very easy to railroad the players if you aren't careful.

Having not read the novel Black Atlantic (can't find it in the US) I would love to hear more about your adventure, and see anything for it that you wish to share with us.

My players are quite far away from being able to take on The Awakening, but I'll be picking it up next week anyway. When you do run that, I would love to hear about any issues, or barriers where you really had to think on your feet.

Since the novel is new, I won't be posting the entire plot here as I would hate to spoil it for everyone and it really is a good read. You can order the book from - it is well worth it as there are some fabulous set pieces to use in a game. Here are some highlights of the game.

Control send the team to arrest a scientist for illegal experimentation - there are no further details other than the name of the scientist and a location, and instructions to impound any computer equipment, notes and scientific equipment they find, and very clear instructions to take the scientist alive. On thier arrival at the scene, they spot a bunch of mobsters loading some cannisters into a refrigerated wagon. There is a firefight (and possibly a chase if they don't act before the loading is finished) after which they can proceed into the factory.

The scientist sets a Warchild on the team. The Warchild is her Biological weapon experiment - a fearsome genetically engineered monster with pre-programmed battle tactics and the ability to regenerate, turn it's arms into blades, and fire poison darts from it's arms, amongst other things. This one she has had to release from it's cryo-tank early and without full programming, so it's fairly weak, but still strong enough to easily take out any PC in hand to hand combat. The team must destroy this monster and prevent the scientst from escaping.

Having done this, the team are called into the Sector House for a special mission briefing. It seems that the scientist has already delivered 12 fully working Warchild Units to a location she will not reveal, but it is over the sea. She is not cracking under interrogation at all - she has spent years building up Psi resistance techniques and Truth Drug resistance, too. It is revealed to the players that th Warchild project was being developed by this scientist when she was working for Tek Division - one of the very few civillians who was considered clever enough to do this. When Hershey became Chief Judge, the project was scrapped and the scientist disappeared. She had continued her work, but this time with Mob money, promising the mob a huge return when she sold the Warchild Units abroad.

A raid of a dockside location run by the mob recently found some containers of chemicals - analysis showed the chemicals to contain traces of Justice Department gene-stock, powerful mutagens and growth accellerating hormones. This was eventually tracked down to the factory the team have just raided. An undercover Judge (this is a slight simplification of the books plot, but worked well in the game) who managed to infiltrate the factory has managed to put long range tracking devices into each of the caskets containing the Warchild Units - the team were supposed to raid the place before the Units were sent out - all the itellegence pointed to the Units still being at the factory, but our scientist friend has had them sent out early just in case of a raid.

Unfortunately, the strat bat carrying the Units over the sea to Brit Cit hit very bad weather and crashed into the middle of the Black Atlantic. A scavenger ship has picked one up and brought it back to it's City - said City being a Cityship - that is, 500 vessels welded together and home to a million people - most of them mutants!

The Justice Dept has picked up the signal, 2000 miles into the Black Atlantic, and also a distress call from the City Ship...

And so the team are sent out to retrieve the warchild. They must take the scientist with them as she claims that she knows the only way to swich the creatures off - she has a codeword but each weapon has it's own unique one and she won't know which word to use until she actually sees which one of her babies has got onto the Cityship. They can also take the Wally Squad Judge, who is a good source of background information.

They just need to get onto the Cityship, gain the trust of the population, capture or kill the warchild and return to the City. Simple!

To tell more would be too big a spoiler, I think. Suffice to say, it has been a really fun time :)
I'm sure you will get some soon...

Everyone I have spoken to that has picked up a copy of The Awakening has said that it's the best scenario so far for the d20 game. I sincerely hope that Mongoose decides to release further adventures, as I'm sure they get many submissions, but in the meantime, this is the best there is so everyone wants it.

I just wanted to add that I have now picked this up, and am very impressed. Matt Pritchard is very good at putting together these adventures and I really hope to see more from him.

The adventure seems nicely laid out, with good sketches of important locations and it's very easy to follow the flow of the adventure. I especially like the handouts and briefing items that reminds me a lot of the GW Judge Dredd game. This is great stuff and I recommend this supplement. I haven't run it yet, but just from reading through it the flow is much better, and the right information seems to be given.

Matt Pritchard is also the author of the Dark Phoenix Rising 2 part adventure that is currently appearing in Signs and Portents (13 & 14).

i think THE AWAKENING is a really good scenario (with one or two name glitches in the text....the speaker on the radio changes his name sometimes while he is speaking *g*....and strangely the last chapter/prog in the book has to be some pages earlier to make "sense")

the psi judge in my group is a i think he will like the scenario very much :)

Heh, it's fun to see all these old posts resurrected. I did think this was an amazing scenario, but unfortunately my group fell apart before I could run it. I'll have to dig it out and check about the last chapter though...

nothing great....only the "interlude: sector house..."is the last chapter in the book...but it has to be played before they leave MC1 for the cursed earth. they even get all necessary information ABOUT the trip in this interlude :)

and some of the radio talk....(example page 38 ):
"....this is C-Watch Commander Juniper....(blabla bla)....Walton out!"

seems he changed his name while talking :)

(happens another time)

nothing i said....just strange :)'s a great JD scenario