HELLO GAMERS. I don’t know who this Kenneth Branagh guy is, but if we ever sit down at the same game table, there’s gonna be physical violence.
Because while Thor may be a good movie, it’s a terrible campaign.
Players: “Hey wow, we’re all playing gods. Epic Level! Awesome! I’ve always wanted to try that!”
KENNETH BRANAGH: “Yeah, and THOR, you are about to get crowned KING of the GODS!”
Michaels: “DUDE! Suhhh-weet!!”
KB: “Yeah, but then some Frost Giants show up and interrupt the ceremony.”
Michaels: “I interrupt their SPINAL CORDS with my HAMMER!!”
Players: “HAM-MER! HAM-MER!”
KB: “Yeah, um, actually you don’t get a chance to because Odin sics The Destroyer on them.” (rolls two dice just to make it look good) “They’re toast.”
Michaels: “So I get to be KING?”
KB: “Um, no man… um, the Norwegians have a rule that, um, you can’t hold a coronation in a room… where…. Frost Giants… dare to tread.”
Michaels: “The Norwegians would never have that rule.”
KB: “Sorry, dude. The Frost Giants ruined it.”
Michaels: “OHHHHH FROST GIANTS! I am TOTALLY kicking their ass! Do they have a lair? I go to their lair!”
KB: “Yeah, Loki thinks that’s a really great idea. You should go to their lair. Who’s playing Loki again? Skiddle?”
Skiddle: (fumbling with his iPhone) “Hum? What?”
KB: “You think it’s a really great idea to attack the Frost Giants’ lair.”
Skiddle: “Guys, let’s go there.”
Michaels: “That’s what I’m sayin’!”
And then there’s a huge fight where the Frost Giants get hammered like a bunch of 8th-graders at their cousin’s wedding in Iowa.
There’s no loot, though, but you’re all GODS so, like, who needs loot. You have frickin’ MJOLNIR. You’re self-looting.
Players: “…No, dude, that was AWESOME. I’ve never actually used a +10 weapon before.”
Michaels: “We waltz up to big daddy Odin and tell him the coronation may proceed post haste: his Frost Giant problems are OVER.”
KB: (putting on his most stodgy, medieval voice) “Huh-ho, I say Young Thor Odinson, say what, say you?”
Michaels: “Dude, I will SLAP you.”
KB: “Am I to understand ye hath broken yon truce with thine Froste Gyantes of Yuntenheim?”
Michaels: “Not doin’ it, dude. NOT doin’ it.”
KB: “Thou art impestuous and unworthy of the crowne! I cast ye out Thor Odinson! I CAST YE OUT!!! –And then there’s some lightning and stuff and you wake up in a van in New Mexico.”
Michaels: “Ok, DUDE… Let’s order another pizza.”
So the whole premise here is that he’s a GOD… who’s no longer a god anymore.
For my next game, I’m running an Underdark campaign that takes place entirely on Bespin.
Skiddle: (wiping pizza grease out of his iPhone case) “So do we see Natalie Portman? Is she wearing that thong from Your Highness?”
KB: “No, you’re not there. You’re still in Asgard. You didn’t get cast out.”
Skiddle: “Yeah, but we fought the Frost Giants too.”
KB: “Yeah, but you’re not in line for the throne.”
Skiddle: “Ummm… it says here on my character sheet ‘Loki is second in line for the throne.’”
KB: “Yeah, but it wasn’t your idea to start anything with the Frost Giants.”
Skiddle: “Ummmm… No, it says here ‘Loki recently contacted the King of the Frost Giants to start a war with Asgard.’”
KB: “It says ‘secret’ before that! SECRET!”
Skiddle: “Oh. Yeah. Well I wanna see Natalie Portman in a thong.”
KB: “Well you CAN’T because you’re NOT cast out!”
Players: “Are ANY of us cast out?”
KB: “Nope. It was all Thor’s idea, so it’s just Thor.”
Players: “So… what do we do?”
KB: (sweating furiously) “Ummm… you… feast. There’s a feast. People are sad, and you have a feast.”
Skiddle: “FOUND IT.” (holds up iPhone) “Check THAT out.”
And then there’s this big long ordeal where Thor THINKS he can just pick up his hammer and he’ll be a god again but of course it’s NOT that simple and he gets captured by that one dude from Iron Man who we thought was kind of cool but in this movie is sorta douchey and it just sorta goes on and on until we click through enough search results to find out that at least SOME of that was a body double and Loki does some ominous stuff and we’re all trying to figure out why we care about Asgard anyway until finally the game gets so boring even Odin falls asleep.
Players: “Odin fell asleep? We sneak off to Earth!”
Skiddle (busy googling Scarlett Johansson): “Guys, guys. You can’t do that because the guard won’t let you past.”
KB (to the Players): “The guard lets you past.”
Skiddle: “What? Dude…”
Players: “We go down to Earth and confront Natalie about this body double issue.”
Skiddle: “WHAT! No fair, I send The Destroyer after them.”
KB: “Really? Because, you know, there’s NO WAY they can defeat The Destroyer. It’s certain doom.”
Skiddle: “Oh. Dude, I don’t want to kill anybody. I call it off.”
KB: “Uhhh, too late! It’s already gone!”
Skiddle: “Oh. Sorry guys.” (holds up phone) “See? I think that’s totally photoshopped.”
And then there’s a big fight which is climactic in a movie sense, but not at all climactic in the D&D sense because nothing the players do can hurt this guy. It’s like trying to remember which spells affect an iron golem.
Michaels (throwing his car keys on the table): Hey guys, I’m back. What did I miss?
Skiddle: “You left like FOUR hours ago.”
Michaels: “Yeah, well after I picked up my little sister from the basketball game she wanted to stop at McDonalds and when we did Alison was there.”
Skiddle: “WHOA. Alison does NOT need a body double. Am I right guys?”
KB: “So ANYWAY, The Destroyer blows the pet store SKY HIGH. WHAT DO YOU DO?”
Michaels: “Destroyer? Who’s fighting The Destroyer?”
Players: “We are.”
Michaels: “Sweet! Do I have my hammer back?”
Michaels: “Do I have my powers back?”
Michaels: “Have I sealed the deal with Natalie Portman?”
Michaels: “Screw this, I kill myself.”
Michaels: “I got no powers, no hit points, and no game. This is bullcrap. I am the LAMEST god ever. I kill myself and go play Call of Duty.”
KB: “Ummmmm… AND JUST THEN, Mjolnir FLIES through the air and lands in your hand. Your self-sacrifice has proven you worthy!”
Michaels: “Sweet. I take my worthiness and go play Call of Duty.”
KB (calling after him): “But don’t you want to hear Odin’s big speech!?!”
Michaels: “Not unless it goes ‘WE HAVE CAPTURED THE ENEMY FLAG.’”
KB (looking around the table): “Oh. Well. Anyway, there’s a big feast and Odin congratulates you and tells you all what a really great job you’ve done.”
Skiddle (googling Kat Dennings on his phone): “Dude, I thought Odin was asleep.”
And THAT is why Kenneth Branagh is a crappy DM.
…Although his name makes a really great battlecry: BRANAAAAAAAGH!