The Creeping Mould  (A Party Game)


by Mike Young 
and Hal Bowman

 

 

Originally published in Metagame, Spring 1998.

This is a good game for a party or social gathering, since many players will not be actively involved in the plot, at least at first. As the GM, you will need to photocopy the information sheets many, many times. You will also need a good supply of two kinds of small stickers. I suggest green and red dots, but the decision is yours.

Game Prep

Print the Creeping Mould and Heroic Human sheets below and make a good number of copies, at least one for each guest in your party.  You'll need a 6 sided die and the chart below.

Running the Game

Start the game by giving one or two of the guests a Mould sheet and a few green stickers. Then start looking for stickers on people's clothing. Optimally, a system should be worked out so that players can subtly signal you when they have put a sticker on someone. When you spot a sticker on someone, remove it and determine its effect by checking Table 1 and rolling a die. Table 1 shows the effect of the stickers on each type of character. If a character changes type, collect any information sheets and stickers they have and exchange them for the new type. 

The game ends when the players get bored with it, or one side "wins," that is, there are no more people to infect or cure.
 

Copy these, 
cut 'em out, 
and give them to players.

Handouts

Creeping Mould

You have been infected with the Creeping Mould from Another Galaxy. It has taken over your brain and you must obey it. The Mould wants to spread, undetected, until it has taken over all humanity. 

To do this, you must place a sticker on another person, without that person knowing. If you do so, please tell the GM so that your victim can get one of these info sheets and a bunch of stickers. The Mould does not want to be discovered, so you should act in all ways as if everything were perfectly normal. 

But the Mould does not have complete control. Its lack of control comes in the form of an occasional quirk. You must, occasionally, do something odd or unusual. You cannot tell people why, and must try to cover it up, but you must still do the quirk. Some day soon, the Mould will have a world full of human slaves. Then you will have won!

Heroic Human

Something unusual is going on. Something tried to take over your mind, but - somehow - you were able to resist. You must try to do something about this. Whatever it was, is still in your bloodstream, but you can now transfer your resistance to other people as well. 

You just need to find out who is infected and place a sticker on them to cure them. You do not want to cause a panic, and if you are found to have resistance, those who have been taken over will gang up to kill you. Therefore, you dare not say a word about what is really going on. If you do manage to stop all of the Mould, you will have rescued humanity and will win.

 Be careful! If you try to cure someone who isn't infected s/he will become a mould!

Sticker Effects Table
Sticker Type Seen on Normal Seen on Mould Seen on Heroic Human
Mould Roll die:
1-4: Becomes Mould
5-6: Becomes Heroic Human
No effect. Roll die:
1-4: Becomes Mould
5-6: No Effect
Heroic Human Becomes Mould Becomes Normal Becomes Mould

Notes:

  1. The die roll for succumbing to the Mould is tested each time a person is stickered.

  2.  
  3. If you see someone with a Human sticker, ask them if they are under the Mould's control. If so, tell them that they do not remember the Mould and have hazy memories of the past few hours. They are Normal again. If not, they have succumbed through irresistible infection.

  4.  
  5. You should be prepared to see a lot of stickers flying, so have a number of stickers and Mould sheets. You don't need as many Human sheets.

  6.  
  7. As GM, you should decide how you will handle attempts to sticker someone that are noticed. One option is to simply have the attempt fail. Another is to invent a provision for Normals to take some action in the struggle.

  8.  
  9. An interesting variation would be two different Moulds, with different stickers, both vying for control with only a few people immune to both. 

The Creeping Mould is Copyright 2000, Interactivities Ink, Ltd.  All rights reserved.  Permission is granted to copy and distribute this game as long as this notice is included in its entirety .  Contact: www.interactivitiesink.com,  mike@interactivitiesink.com.