Marvel Plot Points

A fan site for the Marvel Heroic Roleplaying Game by Margaret Weis Productions

The Road to Civil War: After-Action Report

About a month ago I got some guys together on Skype and ran my first full session of MHRPG. Since then I’ve been intending to do this recap post, but life kept happening to me.

The team consisted of:

  • Fellow Plot Points Bullpen member Seamus Corbett playing The Punisher
  • Ryan Goodman playing Doctor Strange
  • Marcos Bolton playing Spider-Man
  • Dustin Curtis playing Deadpool (the Plot Points version…Yes, he hit the Bea Arthur Milestones)


Odd combination of characters? Absolutely. Did it work? Yes it did.

Since some of these guys had played through Breakout before, and I had recently gotten the Civil War Event pdf, I decide to start the Road to Civil War story-line I assumed that most of these guys had at least looked through the event book, so I wanted a way to throw them a little curve ball. I liked setting the sequence in Washington D.C., but Titanium Man didn’t do anything for me. I also liked the Doctor Doom action scene that is also in Civil War, but the whole fighting over Mjolnir didn’t crank my tractor. Then I thought: COMBINE THEM! (Yes, I sometimes think in Capslock) My idea was just to replace Titanium Man with Doctor Doom and go, but I decided to run the idea by my buddy Mark Meredith. Mark liked the idea, but kicked it up a notch when he said that Doom needed to be testifying before Congress…in full armor. To which I responded, “Yes. Yes he does.” It also gave a nice tie-in to Secret War, as Doom demanded an audience with Congress to discuss the (unofficial) American involvement in the destruction of Castle Doom and assassination of the Latverian Prime Minister. Doom was there ostensibly to encourage the passage of the SHRA in light of this event, but we all know Doom has plans within plans…

Now, that’s pretty much all I’m going to say about the story-line from the game. Seamus is working on a ‘War Journal” post from Punisher’s POV, which I am very much looking forward to reading.

I wanted to take a little time to give you my “lessons learned” from my first real Watcher session. In the hopes that it might help someone else out there.

  1. I didn’t have as good of a handle on the Doom Pool rules as I thought I did. Really spend some time in that section of the Operations Manual.
  2. I’ve got to work on letting go of the reins, and not trying to force my players to follow the story like I think it should go. I was playing with some really creative people and looking back I feel like I really got in their way. Marvel is a very different beast from my other GM experience in this respect. Let your players tell the story with you.
  3. Do stuff other than just attack/damage every time. I kind of got in a rut a little and didn’t get creative with my bad guy’s effect dice.
  4. Relax. It’s a game, not a job.


Overall I think the game went pretty well. Well enough that everybody said they would like to play with this group again. Hopefully that will happen soon. Since this session I’ve run another game of MHRPG for some friends in person. I think I did a much better job that time around, and really built my confidence a lot.

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9 comments on “The Road to Civil War: After-Action Report

  1. Ryan G. (@RTGoodman)
    September 28, 2012

    Hey! Ryan a.k.a. Doctor Strange from the session here! It was a great time, and I thought the background of Doom testifying before Congress was a great idea. It was a really good way to tie together the SHRA/Civil War stuff along with the Secret War and other things going on at the time.

    Here’s a helpful hint for you players out there: Read your SFXs! I was really excited about rolling a high total with a d12 effect die to bind Doctor Doom up with the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak Complication, and I completely forgot the SFX that let me step up the effect die! It could have been a one-hit K.O. against a rampaging Doctor Doom!

  2. Jared Rascher
    September 28, 2012

    Doom testifying and tying the SHRA into the events of Secret War . . . that’s genius. I am so going to have to steal this idea when I get ready to run Civil War.

  3. Dustin Curtis
    September 28, 2012

    My only regret, the naked Deadpool dance to mentally stress out Doom!

  4. daraen
    September 28, 2012

    Awesome! I’m glad it went well. Wish I got the email to join in earlier; sounds like you guys had a blast and hope to hear more if it goes forward.

    And boy will I be watching my inbox more.

  5. Shane Bradley
    September 28, 2012

    My group has cheat sheets including one for the doompool sfx and complications really make the difference

  6. Marcos "Salsa" Bolton
    September 28, 2012

    Things I normally consider when I’m running the game:

    Grandstanding with multiple effect dice turns out to be an awesome way of building the doom pool in my opinion.

    Generating resources and assets also helps a lot.

    Activating events in a scene is also a cool way of spending DD.

    Refrain from only picturing the dice pools and not the action itself. I always describe exactly what I wanna see in a combat situation and THEN I build my dice pools based on that.

    Upgrade minor characters datafiles into major ones if they’re the main villain of a storyline.

    ————————————————

    Looking forward for our next session, looks like this could be a promissing little sandbox 😀

    P.S. Andrew, after re-reading the reflexes trait, turns out I was right about using it for actions involving agility and not only reactions.

    • Andrew Gatlin
      September 28, 2012

      I didn’t mean to give you the impression that you could only use Reflexes for reactions. If I did, I was wrong. Some traits naturally lend themselves to actions or reactions, but to me if you can reasonably explain how you are using it then it’s fair game.

      • Marcos "Salsa" Bolton
        September 28, 2012

        I know, it’s ok. It did seem you thought it worked that way, that’s why I ended up looking for it in the book (not that I would judge your final say about anything in the game, as you’ve probably noticed by my game style) 😀

  7. Pingback: The Road to Civil War: Deadpool’s Diary « Plot Points

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This entry was posted on September 28, 2012 by in Actual Play.

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