Moon Rises is Nerdarchy’s brand new live play series of Monte Cook Games’ Cypher System! Set in the science fantasy post apocalypse of our own Earth, the heroes must help the charismatic leader Unic Hopebringer in reclaiming Manhattan to rebuild it as New Manhattan. We interviewed the cast of Moon Rises to get some insights into their characters, the world and the TTRPG system breathing mechanical life into this alien yet familiar world. Today, we’re sitting down with the player behind the ancient astronaut with a psychic twist! Today we’re talking about the tanky deep sea diver with an alien wetsuit!
Cypher System live play
Please introduce yourself and your new character
“Hi everybody! My name is Steven Partridge and I’m playing Goggles, a Kind Warrior who Explores Deep Waters.
Goggles is a big dude (6’4”) and built like an ox but he’s a gentle giant. He loves making friends and is loyal to a fault. Though you might expect this sort of character to be a leader type he prefers the role of follower. He possesses an alien magitech suit that may or may not have a consciousness of its own. It’s imprinted itself upon him and he’s still discovering new powers and capabilities all the time as he’s only recently acquired it.”
The new campaign is a Cypher System campaign. What are your thoughts on the system?
“I was actually skeptical of the system. I tend to be skeptical whenever I meet any new system because I’m just so ingrained into D&D. The book itself is a little difficult to navigate due to some places with confusing wording and I did have to consult the internet to figure out a couple of core elements. However, Dave was super gracious in walking all of us through the confusing bits. Now that I have a fully fleshed out character I really like the system. Though there is a learning curve I think the system treats many elements of TTRPGs quite elegantly. While I’ll hold my final judgment until after I’ve played a few sessions I do think this is lining up to be one of my favorite systems!”
What role does Goggles fill in the party?
“In terms of the Five Token Band he’s both the Big Guy and the Heart. He’s friendly to literally everyone he meets and while his naivety sometimes comes back to bite him, his optimism keeps him going.
His alien magitech lets him breathe underwater and withstand the crushing pressures of the ocean depths. A byproduct of this is his suit doubles as very strong armor. Weirdly, it turns super flexible, almost like putty, reconstructing itself to adapt to the situation. At the start of the campaign these adaptations include a harpoon gun, a giant crab’s claw, lights, boot flippers and a mask for breathing underwater. All of these help him withstand both underwater and land based threats like a tank.
While talking with Doug about the campaign I mentioned I found it funny he and I sort of reversed roles for our characters, as he is now playing the cautious fish-out-of-water with a mysterious flair while I’m playing the lovable lug meat shield with an evergreen optimism. It is amusing.”
Everyone needs a pastime. When Goggles isn’t actively pursuing danger and mayhem, what does he do for fun?
“Goggles loves cooking! Eating and making new recipes are two of his favorite pastimes, a welcome interest in the post apocalypse. He loves sharing his food with others. His specialties revolve around seafood and water based herbs for obvious reasons.”
If Goggles were playing a game of Humans & Households, what type of character would he be? (Who would Goggles be in our modern day and age? What would that look like?)
“I imagine if he were in our modern day and age he would be a social media influencer of some variety. His charming, genuine personality and love for sharing his interests would solidly peg him there in my opinion. His platform would likely focus on his waterfront life and how to cook healthy, hearty meals using fish and ingredients from his local area. He might post the occasional thirst pic of himself in a bathing suit by the waterfront, but usually the focus would be on the adorable hermit crab in his hands. He might also talk about recycling and the environment, since in our campaign he’s quite resourceful and was a salvager and scavenger before finding his alien suit. He might even dabble in abstract junk art.”
Where did Goggles live prior to adventuring?
“As I just mentioned Goggles went on regular diving expeditions because he’s loves swimming since childhood. He would recover old relics, rare plants, do a little spear fishing — whatever he found interesting at the time. Usually this consisted of what might seem to be junk to others, often pieces of the old world.
He lived in a waterfront town (if it was even big enough to be called that). It’s one of those places where everyone knows everyone else. Aside from those few details, which were already worked out with Dave, I’m open to whatever my GM throws at me about his hometown! Sometimes, discovering your character along the journey is half the fun!
Also previously mentioned (but it feels appropriate here), during one of his diving missions he went out just a bit farther than normal. The sun was high and the weather fair after all.
He discovered what couldn’t have been an alien shipwreck, yet that’s exactly what it seemed to be. Venturing cautiously into the wreckage, he saw a glowing machine. As he drew closer to inspect it, the thing came to life, latching onto him! Whether he wore the armor or the armor wore him is up for debate.”
Does Goggles have any friends/family members/other key figures in his backstory?
“Well, I kind of hate the dead parents trope so I imagine his parents are still alive, probably living in the same waterfront town where he grew up. I also imagine he’d also know the local pawn shop owner fairly well, given his past profession.”
What does Goggles desire most? What are his ambitions?
“Goggles craves new experiences and adventures, new friendships and new food. He’s surprisingly hedonistic at times yet it’s birthed from a love of simple pleasures and a keen awareness of the dangers of the world. After all, nobody knows when they’ll finally be scooped up by a lunar daemon.”
Does Goggles have any secrets or weaknesses/flaws that you would be willing to share?
“Goggles’ most obvious flaw is his naivety, which often gets him into trouble. His earnestness and unwillingness to deceive is another arguable flaw. While he has no qualms or hesitations about open conflict with daemons, monsters or people he doesn’t know he abhors conflict with his close friends and family and will avoid it to a fault. I imagine that growing up in a seaside town he probably knows how to brawl at least for sport, as backed up by one of his warrior talents. However, he’d never touch a friend or family member in anger. I suppose you might call that flaw exploitable honor?”
Many people put a piece of themselves into their TTRPG characters. What parts of yourself did you put into Goggles?
“I love cooking and food every bit as much as Goggles. I love swimming and grew up around the water, and I even gave my character the same haircut as myself. I think probably the biggest part of myself I put into him is my love of making new friends. Between him and Prudence (from Those Bastards!), Goggles is very much more like myself.”
Having come fresh out of Those Bastards, what are your thoughts about this new campaign?
“I’m very excited not only to play a new system but also to play a totally new character. The setting is so unique and it evokes both nostalgia and wonder for me. It literally exploded my creative inspiration when Dave gave us the pitch.
The system seems elegant and engaging and I’m looking forward to continuing playing with a bunch of friends as awesome as the Nerdarchy crew!”
That’s all for Goggles!
Are you excited for Moon Rises as much as we are? What are your thoughts on the setting, characters and other elements we’ve revealed so far? Have you ever played Cypher System, Numenera or other Monte Cook Games? Let us know your thoughts in the comments! You can tune in every Tuesday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern to watch the ongoing saga of Moon Rises at the Nerdarchy Live YouTube channel. Be sure to subscribe and hit the notification bell so you don’t miss the live play game or our other longform video content like daily and weekly live chats here.
Until next time, later, nerds!