Monday, February 25, 2013

Going to Valhalla, Alaska

Back when I was in high school I had these two friends that put together this "fake" band ala Spinal Tap.  The name of the band was "Harvey Goes to Valala" which was an obvious play on "Frankie Goes Hollywood" and my high school and college nickname "Harvey" (long story).  I say "fake" because it was supposed to be in fun, but my two friends really got into it to the point of "releasing" an album called "Pocket Full of Braincells" (also a full year before Spin Doctors came out with A Pocket Full of Kryptonite, no no there was nothing too that, something in the water in the late 80s/early 90s I am sure).

I liked the town, Valala, and always thought it was this out of the way place up north where the people were weird but had limited outside influences to keep themselves sane.

Valala, Alaska took various shapes and forms in my mind since the late 80s.  It wasn't till the late 90s/early 00s that I considered using the WitchCraft game.  I thought about it again when I was running a WitchCraft game online a few years back, "Vacation in Vancouver" which was a fun, but really dark and adult game (deaths in a prostitution ring that catered to supernatural clients).
The Valala game was going to be something along the lines of a weird Northern Exposure.  A town full of odd folk and supernaturals.  There was going to be humor, but dark.

Over the weekend I was doing laundry and found the "concert" shirt for the Harvey Goes to Valala World tour.  All the towns were places where we all had run off to go to college.  But it got me thinking about this game again.

I still think WitchCraft is a great choice for it, but again with dark humor and really strange people; both mundane and supernatural. Everything in most modern supernatural games are so serious.  This would be.  Sure things would still be dangerous. But the characters would all be locals and quirky ones at that.

With WitchCraft I could use all the supernatural types.  I have always wanted a Werebear character in one of of these games.  I also had this idea for an old and lazy vampire.  Basically the opposite of every other vampire you have ever seen. He's old, ugly, poor and lazy. He survives by trapping animals.
I'd also have to include some crazy ass, conspiracy theory- believing, "prepper" guy.  Someone living in a hole in the ground with his guns and cans of beans.

It was pointed out to me that this is a similar idea to Buffy.  But mine would be less Joss Whedon and more David Lynch.

I would need to get some basic adventure ideas together.  The trick is to take a normal supernatural adventure and do something bizarre with it.   The first one I came up with was about a Sasquatch.  In the normal adventure the Sasquatch is causing problems or killing the local livestock.  In a "Buffy" version the Sasquatch is a demon.  In the "Valala" version the Sasquatch is having sex with the females of the local moose population.  The cries of the moose are keeping people up at night.  The moose hanging around the outskirts of the city because they are enjoying are causing even more problems.  So the issue is not "wow Bigfoot is reall!" it's "Bigfoot is real. And he is a nasty perv keeping everyone up at night."

If I come up with some more ideas I'll share them.  Thought with what I have been thinking of lately you might not want me too!

I'll have to look to see what I have of this.  I seem to recall making a map of the town at one point.  It was on the water.

Though I think I am going to rename the town to be Valhalla, AK.  Kinda like calling a town "Hell" or "Purgatory".


Tim Knight said...

Oh wow, you just reminded me of a "fake band" a couple of friends and I put together at school called Terminal Leaf.

If I remember correctly they were an obscure Eastern European band and put together some mix tapes of their music using obscure Clash tracks from the multi-disc, experimental Sandinista album.

Eventually we had started to hear people saying they had seen the band on TV!

We printed fliers for a faux tour, but when we sold a ticket I started to feel guilty that the joke had gone too far, so we refunded the lad his money and let the band drift back into obscurity.

The odd things kids get up to school...

Anonymous said...

This actually sounds like my kind of thing and I would love to see the WitchCraft NPCs for this.

It also reminds me that I too threw in my go-to fake band, the Pop Tarts, into the adventure for the WC Chronicler's screen.

Back in Virginia, I once put up fake band fliers for a Pop Tarts April 1st concert at a venue that hadn't existed for years. I only found out later that there were folks who tried to go to it, so hooray for April Fools :)

Timothy S. Brannan said...

@Tim, yeah. I should at this point out that I had no part in this myself because I have no talent.

@Thom. I'll have to work on something. I was thinking of putting up some NPCs and some characters for people to play and then put out some adventures for free.

Kilsern said...

If you base it in Alaska, as an Alaskan, I beg you, do your research. Not related to your Witchcraft game, I know, but the movie and comic, 30 Days of Night makes me laugh out loud. First off, no trees in Barrow,AK and the idea that there are 30 days when no airplanes land there? PLEEEAAASSSEE! I've been to Barrow many times, AK Airlines lands there at least 6 days a week, 52 weeks a year. And the lack of Alaskan Natives in any of movie based in rural "Alaska", big giggles.

Timothy S. Brannan said...

@Kilsern. Absolutely! For me realism (even in a fantasy world) is important.

Also native Alaskans are for me a much have!