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Café Casablanca

Casablanca. December 1941. The flotsam and jetsam of Europe has been washed up on the North African coast by the tides of war. Morocco is nominally neutral under the control of the Vichy French, but they are overseen by the German representatives. Agents from European and other powers congregate in Casablanca, where they are joined by refugees, displaced tourists and underworld figures eager to take advantage of the chaos. Anything you want can be found in Casablanca, either in the Casbah or Rick Blaine’s (in)famous Café Americain. The Casbah is no place for the unwary, but everybody comes to Rick’s.

This is the setting for Cruel Hoax Productions’ large-scale roleplay game, Café Casablanca, based on many films noir, but set firmly in the locations of Casablanca. SFC Press ran the game over a weekend at the beginning of March 2000. I took part as “Eddie Brennan”, a bum with the catch phrase “Was you ever bit by a dead bee?” – instantly recognisable to anyone familiar with To Have and Have Not. I had huge fun getting involved in the many plots that intertwine through the game – one of the advantages of having a character that nobody takes seriously. By the end of the game Eddie had recovered his memory, pulled himself together and taken a terrible revenge on the servants of Fu Manchu (which just gives you an idea of the diverse sources that have been cannibalised for the game).

I took some photos of the event and have scanned a few in to give you an idea of the goings on. I have put them on two pages, to which the links follow. Note that these pages will be slow to load.

In the Casbah – shady types in The Blue Parrot
Everybody comes to Rick’s – marginally less shady types

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Page created 17th March 2000. Last updated 24th February 2012.
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