Getting Back to Rifts (Soon, I Hope)

After several months of playing nothing but Warhammer 40K, I'm looking forward to beginning our Rifts game through Google Wave, but the setup is slow going. The last time I started a Rifts campaign, I used pregenerated characters so we just picked them up and played. This time, just getting the ball rolling has been a challenge in and of itself.

First of all, everyone is creating characters from scratch, and one of the quirks of the Palladium RPG system is really shining through: very involved and very time consuming (for new players, at least) character generation. The detail is nice in actual play, but seems tedious when you're setting up. Second, Google Wave is still in beta for a reason. One of my players has had difficulties getting it to work correctly, and it seemed to take forever just to get the invites to go through. Once we get all of the characters rolled up and sort out the software issues, we'll actually get to play a bit!

In the meantime, I'm reading more and more of MercTown... which I'm beginning to believe will be a commonly recurring location in my future Rifts campaigns. I love this book... so much that I might try to get my hands on a copy of Merc Ops as well. With literally hundreds of locations, MercTown is the best fantasy (well, sci-fi) setting book I think I've ever had the pleasure of reading. The best part, though, is that it doesn't go overboard on the detail. There's a sweet spot somewhere between leaving the GM with so much empty space that the PCs test his improvisational skills on a regular basis and providing so much detail that the GM is overwhelmed with setting info. The location descriptions in MercTown have just enough detail to fuel a plot hook but not so much that a creative GM can't spin the story into something interesting... just the way I like it.

Here's hoping I get to write about the beginning of our Rifts campaign soon...
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