kill puppies for satan
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a bit about kill puppies for satan
kill puppies for satan is a roleplaying game. you pretend to be people who do just
exactly what the title recommends. it's 32 pages of blasphemy, obscenity, profanity, not
honoring thy father nor mother, and coveting thy neighbor's ass. or other pet.
in the game, when you kill a puppy (or other animal), you get points of evil. you spend
your evil to do supernatural evil things, like start fires. there must be fifteen
different ways to start fires with evil.
the system is minimal in the way that particularly irritates people who would rather be
playing rolemaster or millenium's end. you have only six stats, for instance, and that's
counting generously. one stat is how many people hate you. it takes about two minutes to
make a character, longer if you need a calculator to add low single digit numbers.
the system isn't just small, it's also clever and flexible. in addition to the
puppykillers, the main book includes rules for normal people, heroes, vigilantes,
religious fanatics, space aliens (pretty much the pcs' only competition in the cattle
mutilation department), sorcerers, ghouls, scientists, vampires, and demons, including a
nice section on how to play lucifer himself as an npc. cockroach souffle includes rules
for zombies, ghosts and werewolves too.
the game is gorgeous - well, i mean gorgeous in that perfect cruddy underground
manuscript kill puppies for satan kind of way. i found a font for the titles
that looks like somebody's typewriter and chainsmoking at four in the morning. between
puppies and cockroach souffle it's 55 pages and, like my buddy travis says, satan can't
afford capital letters. there's no art. all told a masterpiece of for shit design. they're
ten bucks for both.
you can click here to get some or read on.
so satan's actually a pretty nice guy. set aside for a minute the fact
that he's cold, fucked up, mean and relentless all at 10, he has
starting evil in the triple digits, and three point six billion
people worldwide hate him. underneath he's just this regularish guy
who watches pro wrestling and cspan. (and sure, rules hell and so
on.) but i mean he's not like the other guy, he's approachable.
he's not full of himself, he doesn't bogart the joint just because
he's the fucking fallen morningstar, the first person ever with the
balls to spit in god's coffee. (which you gotta fucking admit.)
but even so, if you want to hang with him, you gotta follow a couple
rules. they aren't commandments exactly, because he's willing to
overlook a few infractions, you know, out of neighborliness. not
like that other prick. just keep 'em in mind is all he asks.
- don't kill people if you can help it. if they're bad people,
satan would rather have them out doing evil in the world. if
they're good people, they go to heaven and nobody wants that.
- if you must fuck with people, better to make them say "why god
why?" than "god help me." real torture leads people to find their
inner strength and shit, petty meanness makes people lose faith in
each other. better to hit their dog with your car and drive away
- don't try to make the world a better place. i know this is a
no-brainer but you'd be surprised the kind of goody two shoes want
to be satan's buds. don't give money to amnesty international or
the nra or even the fucking kiwanis club. keep your cash for
yourself, spend it on cigs and porn, put it in stocks bonds and iras,
who gives a shit. anyway the world is pretty much just how satan
likes it, and if he wants it different he'll tell you.
- don't try to tempt people to sin. it's a union thing, and believe
me you don't want to scab on demons. just kill puppies and leave the
rest to the professionals.
- oh, and don't get caught, asshole. you definitely won't do satan
any favors from a padded cell in willard.
the evil fucked up side of ... guns
there are no good gun mechanics in roleplaying. probably there can't
be because it's just too complicated. set up the shot, pull the
trigger, and who the fuck knows? even supposing you hit, bullets
spin and tumble and bounce, they roll around your ribs and out the
other side, they mushroom or shatter into bits, the physics of
bullets is fucking crazy. one guy lives through ten rounds in the
torso, the next guy kills himself with an air pistol. so i'm not
going to bother. i'll give you some advice, but don't even expect
any mechanics out of me. if you need gun mechanics, go play squad
leader or millenium's end or whatever the fuck.
so here's my advice.
- the whole point is to kill. a gun that won't kill somebody in one
shot isn't worth selling to children, right? so absolutely every
single time somebody pulls a trigger, somebody might die. you, me,
random strangers, the downstairs neighbor, there's always a chance.
make sure your pcs know it.
- on the other hand, there's no such thing as a sure kill. i know
it's a special case, but jfk's brains were on the fucking trunk of
the lincoln and they didn't declare him until four hours later.
people get shot in the head and fall down and stop breathing and go
on anyway to live normal happy lives. not most of the time, not much
of the time, very rarely in fact, but it does happen. if your pcs
want to be 100%, make them use a fuckload of bullets.
- nobody knows what's going on in a firefight, and accuracy in the
real world is for shit. take this poor diallo guy. those cops shot
41 bullets at him, he was standing in a for fuck sake doorway, and a.
they only hit him with 19 or something and b. they thought he was
shooting back. nothing like flying bullets to make you stupid.
you don't know where you hit that guy, you just know he fell down.
you don't know where the shots are coming from. don't give your pcs
tactical information, tell them what they see and hear and make them
fucking sort it out.
- every bullet goes somewhere. roll the shot, miss, shit happens,
but do you know where that bullet is now? in a stone wall? through
a window and in old mrs merrihew's toaster oven? lodged against the
rib of a passing dogwalker? make your pcs remember to ask what's
going on on the far side of their targets.
- bullets don't kill you by magic, they kill you by tearing big
pieces out of you. they splatter blood, they blow off fingers, they
unhinge jaws and elbows, they make you puke your shredded guts out
your mouth and nose. there's no such thing as a clean kill. make
your pcs gag.
- dying sucks. sometimes you pass out and never wake up, sometimes
you scream for an hour, sometimes you piss yourself with pain until
fucking tomorrow. you shit yourself. sometimes a lateral headshot
will make your brain swell up and cut off its own circulation and
leave your brainstem alive, heart beating, breathing in and out,
perfect for organ donation but dead fucking dead. your best bet
whatever happens is to get to the hospital, but who knows. make your
pcs scared to fucking death of death. (let alone that they're going
straight to hell, and demons are going to piss lye into their
eyesockets for the rest of time.)
- different guns are good for shooting people under different
conditions. a glock 19 is good for shooting people under normal,
reasonable shooting people conditions like when the fucking jocks
have been pushing you around for four nightmarish years and you can't
fucking take it anymore, plus they're wicked reliable. a pump
shotgun is good for making that noise before you shoot people in
fucking half. a colt 9mm submachinegun is good for when you want to
kill everybody in the room but you don't really want to kill the
people in the next apartment, while an m16 is good for when you don't
care who the fuck you kill. make your pcs use approximately the
right gun for the job (but definitely don't expect them all to be gun
- oh, and if your pcs don't want guns or want them only to use on
animals not people, they're super cool (remember satan's guidelines).
tell them right on from me.
the evil fucked up side of ... that first session
you gotta break the ice and get the stupid pcs to work together. it's
the plague of roleplaying and fuck if most of the time we don't just
have them meet in a bar instead. you can go ahead and just do it
that way if you want, i mean hell it's your game, but maybe try this.
have everybody make their characters. you know how in some games it
says you must draw your character, to connect with the right parts of
your brain or whatever? in this game, you absolutely must write i
kill puppies for satan at the top of your character sheet. if you
don't do it, you're clearly not in the spirit of the game and you
might as well fuck off. tell your players that. tell 'em i said so.
turn to your first player. have her introduce her character. hi, my
name's morton and i kill puppies for satan. hi morton. please say
something about yourself.
if you're gonna run the kick in the head starting adventure that's
coming up, say how do you know gerald stebbins? why did he invite
you to his birthday party? no, come on, it's gotta be better than
that, he only invited like eight people and one of them's you. are
you like his friend or what? (everybody and their fucking dog
compares roleplaying to improv theater. make your players work for
now your next player. hi, my name's joanie and i kill puppies for
satan. hi joanie. my mother abandoned me in the dumpster behind a
post office, i was raised by a postal worker who muttered and mowed
his lawn every damn day, christmas, easter, rain, snow, the fuckin'
ice storm of '97, he didn't miss a single day, out there with his
mower grinding away at twenty two inches of solid frozen ice, i mean
fuck, man. thanks for sharing that, joanie. (what about you and
gerald stebbins? what gift do you get him?)
here it is: and how do you and morton know each other?
then sit there and don't say anything until they work it out. (if
it's clear that they're not gonna work it out, lazy fuckers, do
something mean to them. okay, well, you were internet pen pals, you
were both posing as fifteen year old virgin girls, you decided to
meet at the mall, and there you were. now you're friends, with
occasional benefits. suck it up.)
now your third player, hi my name's scooter and i kill puppies for
satan. yes i was named after the character on the muppet show. hi
scooter. gerald stebbins blah blah blah. and how do you know joanie
so by the end of this you'll have inter-character stuff going on,
just what you wanted, characters talking, getting to know each other,
spilling beer on each others' sofas and dropping butts in each
others' potted plants. never fails. i guarantee it or your money
back. tell the guy at the counter i said so.
how many fish would a blowfish blow?
or, the evil fucked up side of ... zombies
let's start with a sorcerous spell:
- the obedient servant, 3 potency - cast on a corpse. the corpse
becomes animate and supernaturally strong. it will follow your
instructions but is stupid as shit. the spell lasts for as long as
you want, but the corpse continues to decompose the whole while.
blowfish poison is a traditional component of the spell (as we know
from the serpent and the rainbow).
so that's where zombies come from.
now, the type of zombie you get when you cast the spell depends on
just how decomposed the body is. and yes, if you keep zombies around
they gradually change from one type to the next.
- instead of cold, zombies are minimally sentient, instead of fucked
up, they're a pain in the ass, instead of mean, they want to eat your
brains, and instead of relentless, they're single-minded.
- if you cast the spell on a body that hasn't begun to decompose, you
get a zombie who can pass as living. zombies of this sort usually
have high numbers in minimally sentient and pain in the ass, and low
to middling numbers in want to eat your brains and single-minded.
they can even occasionally talk or otherwise communicate ("want...
to... eat... brains..."). of the three, they make the best
bodyguards, not least because you can take them out in public.
- here's a character sheet for a recently dead zombie.
my friends and relations might still recognize me
i used to have a name
minimally sentient 4
pain in the ass 4
want to eat your brains 2
- if you cast the spell on a body that is definitely decomposing, you
get a classic evil dead sort of zombie, vicious and aggressive, with
a fucking fearsome hunger for brains. this sort has high numbers in
want to eat your brains and single-minded, and lowish numbers in
minimally sentient and pain in the ass. of the three, they make the
best killers and shock troops, if you can keep them quiet between
- here's a character sheet for a classic zombie.
dead by dawn! dead by dawn!
i haven't had a name for a while
minimally sentient 1
pain in the ass 3
want to eat your brains 5
- if you cast the spell on a skeleton (or mostly one), you get an
animated skeleton, of course. skeletons, being more brittle, pay
more attention to their surroundings, but god damn they still crave
the brains. their high numbers are in pain in the ass and want to
eat your brains. of the three, they make the best protectors for
your stuff, since they fold small and you can put them as an ambush
into like your closet or foot locker.
- here's a character sheet for a skeleton zombie.
ray harryhousen would be proud to call me his own
i haven't had a name for a long ass time
minimally sentient 2
pain in the ass 5
want to eat your brains 4
good grief and gravy
being the gm is the shit, and also bullshit. the shit because you get
to toy with peoples' little lives, bullshit because it's like the
goddamn sims, their little bladder meter goes all the way to the red
and they can't figure out for them stupid selves to get off the
stupid couch and go to the stupid bathroom. no, you gotta click on
the little thing, and click on the other little thing, and they spend
so long in there that they miss their carpool and get fired, and then
they come crying to you, wah wah wah. feebs.
right, but i mean your players. they think that if a. you didn't say
so or b. it's not on their character sheet, then it's not true.
which is a problem, because a. you can only say so many things, and
you hope to god they're more interesting than "scooter, you really
have to pee, do you go to the bathroom? do you make it back out in
time for your carpool?" and b. there are only eight things on their
character sheet, and one of them is that they kill puppies for satan
for fuck sake.
so what you want to do as gm is make them responsible for their own
pee. keep the good stuff for yourself, naturally, but give the
killing puppies is a perfect example. the first couple of times it's
kind of novel, if you're into it. but since
rule number one: there must be enough evil
you're going to end up going through puppies like
toilet paper. it can get a little dull. you could just hand puppies
out, okay you kill the puppy and you get two evil what do you do now,
but then you might as well be playing observe celestial events for
potency or some other lame shit. and besides
rule number two: there must be more grief
so slacking off on it will never do. no, you've got
to find a way to make the damn puppies carry their own weight.
here's a way. whenever one of your pcs wants to kill a puppy and you
don't want to deal with it in depth, hand it back to them:
- scooter: man, i'm down to my last couple evil. i gotta find a puppy
to kill. hey, can i find a puppy to kill?
- you: sure. what kind of puppy do you find?
- who cares what scooter says. i find a baby harp seal living under a
bench in the park, i find a rare beautiful tropical fish that
somebody left in a fishbowl on top of their car, i find a nice
parrot. give it to them, don't even sweat it.
- you: that's fine. you can kill it however you want. go ahead and
collect the evil. what grief does it give you?
now what you want, of course, is for your players to come up with
devious, perverse, and funny things to do to themselves, without any
more effort on your part. you might have to keep at it a while, but
sooner or later they'll catch on.
the first thing is to get them to stop thinking about their damn
- scooter: uh, i get -1 to my cold for the next six hours.
- you: yeah, right. that doesn't even make sense. try again.
- scooter: well how about if i get a penalty to my people hate me
- you: yawn. keep trying.
eventually they'll start coming up with good in character things,
genuine inconveniences, not just dumb dice penalties. making enemies,
leaving evidence, hurting themselves, costing themselves money or
time, stumbling into weird shit that they'd otherwise miss, on and
on, they're probably much more twisted than you gave them credit for.
sometimes dice penalties or new people who hate them will come out of
their descriptions, and that's cool, just not vice versa.
anyway once they get away from the dull mechanics-based grief, the
next thing is to make sure they're serious about it. whenever they
try to get away with weak grief you might just slap them down:
- scooter: okay, well as i'm bashing the fish with a brick i nick my
other hand with the corner and i get a wicked bad blood blister right
- you: nice try. actually, when you bash the fish with the brick, the
brick splits and there's this rush of foul air from the crack.
you're possessed by an obnoxious little demon, it's been trapped in
there for a long time. what's your favorite restaurant?
- scooter: uh. pinocchio's, downtown.
- you: great. the demon takes you downtown to pinocchio's and you spend
the next six hours gorging yourself on veal and scampi. you eat,
what, five dishes an hour, fifteen bucks a plate, call it five
hundred dollars worth of food. you skip out without paying, of
course, and then the demon curls up in a corner of your mind and goes
- scooter: you mean it's still there?
- you: naturally. and i gotta tell you, it needs five hundred dollars
worth of veal and prawns every day or it gets really nasty.
- scooter: but -- but how do i get rid of it?
- you: you wait. until christmas. oh, and plus, when you see morton,
the first thing you do is puke on him.
- morton: huh? you what?
show them that when they try to get away with lame grief, instead they
get fucked to spare. get them looking for that magic level -- bad
enough that you'll give it to them, but not so bad that they can't
live with it. and definitely definitely not as bad as you do to them
when they try to weasel out.
another fun thing is to turn it over to one of the other players:
- scooter: so i kill this puppy, and --
- you: hold on. morton, what grief does it give her?
- morton: huh? oh, i get it. well, let's see, what was it again that
she puked on me? veal and prawns?
- scooter: oh, come on now!
- you: no, go ahead, morton. run with that. what's the grief?
that'll learn 'em.
once you get it rolling, all you gotta do is decide occasionally to
play a puppy killing out in detail, so nobody gets too comfortable.
oh, and of course if they fucking cheated during character creation,
it's your civic duty to give them grief till the blood comes out
their ears. just in case you forgot.
get some kill puppies for satan