Aug 042016

Today’s RPGaDay question is the character moment I was most proud of. This is tough one for me as I don’t tend to play as much as I GM. Most of the times I get to play are at conventions, which are not the best opportunities to truly develop a character. However, I would say that the one moment that stands out in my mind was my first chance to play Trail of Cthulhu at GenCon 2014, with the amazing Mike Gruber as the Keeper when one of my characters went completely and totally insane.


As far as I can remember, we were investigating some supposed psychics performing seances. I wound up with a character who was a total skeptic. I jumped into this investigation with both feet, intent upon proving the psychics fakes. The other investigators weren’t so sure (justifiably so) and managed to turn up evidence that while there was fakery afoot, there was also some very weird otherworldly witchcraft at work that ultimately was going to summon bring something very bad into our world.55567I played my skeptic to the very last scene, disputing everything we saw, pointing to trickery in every odd event, stubbornly refusing to see what was there. But, in that last scene, as the gate was about to open and the witch was about to be released, the sheer horror of the scene was such that I realized my character would not be able to dispute the supernatural events before his very eyes, so without so much as a sanity roll, decided this was it for his sanity. He would snap and act completely out of character to restore “sanity” to the world.

He drew his revolver, shot dead the summoner and then shot each of his allies in the room (we had chased the summoner into a basement or something and the rest of the party was further back)

Not only would he ensure that this horror was stopped, but the sheer knowledge of it had to be eradicated from the world and that meant eliminating everyone who knew about it.

He then returned to the rest of the group, professed a terrible accident and that it was all trickery and we all left, confident that I had kept the secret safe from the world.

It was a terrible betrayal, but it was a moment of pure insanity, which felt absolutely perfect in the moment. In retrospect, he should have killed himself, but somehow I guess he thought he would remain the protector of this terrible secret.

More awesomeness...

Justin Schmid

Justin started tabletop gaming in 1983 with Basic D&D (red box) and never looked back. He runs and plays in a wide variety of games, including Savage Worlds, Dungeon World, Trail of Cthulhu and many, many more. He also writes professionally for role-playing games, including writing and creating Night's Edge an Alternate Reality Universe for Cyberpunk 2020. He went on to write eight more adventures and sourcebooks in the Night's Edge line, adding vampires and other supernatural perils to the already dangerous world of Cyberpunk. As a freelance writer, he wrote The Bermuda Triangle for Call of Cthulhu, Shadows of the Mind, and Psi Wars for Conspiracy X and contributed to Last Unicorn's Star Trek RPG, as well as to Cybergeneration sourcebooks, and many other games. When he's not creating imaginary worlds for his daughter, he's running games for his friends and writing new adventures or designing new game systems. He currently lives in Vancouver, B.C., Canada.

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