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Old 10-20-2017, 09:25 AM   #1
martinl
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Default Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

Last night I ran a quick one-shot for a subset of my GURPS group, as the GM of our current campaign was out of town. I made a hand out, and realized instead of just deleting it now that we're done I should share:
Welcome to the Ponyplex

The year is 2035. As Equestria enters the 11th year of Princess Ivankia’s third term as monarch, the ponies are in foment. MegaCorps own almost everything except the actual Ponies, and they’re working on that. The divide between the ponycracy and the drones is gapes even larger than gap between the drones and the rabble. Pro-Ivankia and pro-Corp propaganda fills the Net, the airwaves, and every vertical surface that holds still long enough. The triple Ps turn out in force to suppress protest and arrest “agitators” even as crime in the foalvalas has become so ignored and so organized as to be almost a third form of government. Stuff is clopped up. Equestria cries for heroes.

You are not them. You are shadygallopers, folks who do dubiously legal and highly deniable missions for the ponycrats in exchange for large wads of hay. Tonight you are going to break into Mirrortree Tower, the blasglass and alloy factorcology of KeeblerCorp, and investigate the covert bioweapon program “Azure Thunder” that Nekko NLC fears they are running in the subsurface “root” levels. Information is good. Sabotage is better. Bring the bioweapon back to NekkoNLC for enough sweet sweet hay to live the rest of your life like a Ponycrat.

Game on.

Glossary
Blasglass – armored glass
Clop, Clopped, etc – Pony slang for “frak”
Drones – folks who work for corps, actual robots are called “robots.” Tend to high loyalty for … reasons.
Equestria – The country the Ponyplex is in
Factorcology – Factory/arcology – a company town in a skyscraper.
Foalvala – a slum.
Hay – Legal money is digital and traceable. This is not and is not. Various forms.
Ivankia – Leader of Equestria. Widely loved for … reasons.
Keebler – Drone that works for Keebler Corp.
NLC – Non-liable Corporation. These days, just means corporation.
PonyCrats – The aristocrats! Owns a corp or large parts of one.
Ponyplex – a giant sprawl of a city.
Ponypopo/PPP/Triple Ps – the cops.
Rabble – folks who neither own nor work for corps. Always hustlin’.
Shadygallop – doing dubiously legal and highly deniable missions for ponycrats in exchange for large wads of hay

PCs were Prancerfaust (power armor brick) and Blood Spatter (Dexter as a pega-cyber-samauri) backed up by NPC Cable Jack (the hacker - her player had to work late.) They succeeded in getting a sample of the Nanotech Cookiemonstershoggoth from the basement and earned a lot of sweet sweet hay.
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Old 10-20-2017, 09:55 AM   #2
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Default Re: Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

My Little Pony meets Shadowrun. I must say, as a non-brony, I would play in this. :)
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Old 10-20-2017, 10:29 AM   #3
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Default Re: Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

I'm pondering what other genres you could do...

My Little Pony: Friendship is Treason! Celestia is Your Friend. Trust Celestia.
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Old 10-20-2017, 10:48 AM   #4
martinl
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Celti View Post
I'm pondering what other genres you could do...
All of them. This is GURPS.
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Old 10-20-2017, 08:46 PM   #5
clu2415
 
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Default Re: Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

I am intrigued by your ideas and wish to subscribe to your newsletter.
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Old 10-20-2017, 10:39 PM   #6
David Johnston2
 
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Default Re: Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

Ponythulu. Of course if you see a human they qualify as an eldritch abomination that you need to roll a frightcheck for.
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Old 10-24-2017, 01:25 PM   #7
martinl
 
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Default Re: Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

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Originally Posted by clu2415 View Post
I am intrigued by your ideas and wish to subscribe to your newsletter.
I'm not sure if you mean more info on the Ponyplex or more info on alternate genres of pony gaming.

Here's a little of both:

The Ponyplex Shadygallop I ran was based on using my daughter's toys as minis. Aside from the obvious ponies, there was

A lost little girl with a bear (actually a disguised security robot that ran a behavioral AI looking for folks who reacted weirdly to children - the PCs were friendly and kind, and didn't realize it was Keebsec until much later.)

A matryoshka warbot that shot plastic explosive cookie dough that stuck to you and then detonated, leaving behind a delicious odor. Every time they "killed" it a smaller warbot popped up from inside, until the last one was the size of akcat and just stomped on.

A translucent white stag that looked like a hologram but was actually an artistically designed robot with sonic emitters designed to improve employee morale. (Mostly weirded out the PCs, but also took them a lot of time.)

A cross between Cookie Monster, a T1000, and a Shoggoth (the bioweapon they were looking for) that was basically unkillable short of nuclear strike. It swallowed the powerarmor pony, who temporarily fragmented it by tripping concussion grenade from the inside - the slice pony grabbed a sample in a container and they ran while Keebsec tried desperately to contain it again.

The best part was the safe door though. As an anti-hacking measure, the Keeblers had an old fashioned completely mechanical safe door in the PCs way. The hacker had to ponygoogle it to even understand what it was. This sparked a talk about old-fashioned tech, and somehow hacking old school temporary light-up highway signs was brought up, including the instruction that "the DoT never changes the default password." They captured a drunk exec and coerced the combo from him - it was still the factory default setting.

---

Adding ponies to another genre is easy, since the show basically does not restrict them realistically. Peg got winged flight, unicorn got some TK, otherwise ran them without any pony template. It works largely because no one was taking it too seriously, which was the intent.

The best genres to mash with "innocent children's entertainment" are gritty ones, because it heightens the silly factor and is a contrasting flavor. Pony DnD is meh, but Pony Dark Sun is cool, and Pony Madlands is probably too mindblowing for me to ever run.

Even more generally, when I run a genre mashup, I try for contrast. Yes, sometimes two dark things go well together (VtM Zombie Apocalypse), but it can easily become overbearing in play. If you have two or three opposing poles of mood, you can easily adapt to the table.

And don't worry about it making sense. In this great hobby of ours, awesome beats sensible 9 times out of 5.
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Old 10-24-2017, 01:32 PM   #8
sir_pudding
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Default Re: Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

Quote:
Originally Posted by martinl View Post
and Pony Madlands is probably too mindblowing for me to ever run.
That would be extremely meta, mashing up a darkly reimagined children's story with another children's entertainment.
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Old 10-24-2017, 02:07 PM   #9
martinl
 
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Originally Posted by sir_pudding View Post
That would be extremely meta, mashing up a darkly reimagined children's story with another children's entertainment.
It's ponies all the way down, man.

.
.
.
But yeah.

I understand that to experts in the history of art and literature, a lot of culture is kind of fractally sedimentary - X is basically Y in a modern setting, which was based on P, Q, and G, each of which was .... until you hit the epic of Gilgamesh or something, for which we lack sources, but is clearly based on earlier stuff.

I'm not sure I'd want to see my favored media that way lest the instinctive pedantry ruin the fun, but then again maybe the instinctive pedantry is more fun than the normal way.

Meh - less analysis, more Pony War 2: Ponies of the Eastern Front.
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Old 10-24-2017, 03:37 PM   #10
sir_pudding
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Default Re: Welcome to the Ponyplex (Setting Sketch)

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Originally Posted by martinl View Post
I understand that to experts in the history of art and literature, a lot of culture is kind of fractally sedimentary - X is basically Y in a modern setting, which was based on P, Q, and G, each of which was .... until you hit the epic of Gilgamesh or something, for which we lack sources, but is clearly based on earlier stuff.
That Madlands was The Hundred Acre Wood as dark fantasy survival horror is significantly more transparent than that though. It's pretty much already on the level of the Ponyplex.
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