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Messages - Christian

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Hi Korbl! When you say:

"I know one person who I've played with that I would maybe trust to not kill all the players an hour into the first session, whether through malice or incompetence."

I'm a bit dumbstruck. That's really rather sad. And it has nothing to do with Apocalypse World (AW), because no game can protect you from that. Especially not all those traditional games that give the GM leeway to do whatever they want. In fact, AW has principles and agendas that directly tell people NOT to act like this. Check out these agenda items for the GM:

• Make Apocalypse World seem real.
• Make the players’ characters’ lives not boring.
• Play to find out what happens.

Is it "real" to have characters land on a bear? Only if you've established in the fiction already that it would make sense. It would definitely make the character's life not boring, and it would be interesting to see what happens. But you should follow all three items.

But what should the GM do instead of the bear? You were asking for "without broader lists of potential complications for such rolls." Let's take a look at the GM Moves:

• Separate them.
• Capture someone.
• Put someone in a spot.
• Trade harm for harm (as established).
• Announce off-screen badness.
• Announce future badness.
• Inflict harm (as established).
• Take away their stuff.
• Make them buy.
• Activate their stuff’s downside.
• Tell them the possible consequences and ask.
• Offer an opportunity, with or without a cost.
• Turn their move back on them.
• Make a threat move (from one of your fronts).
• After every move: “what do you do?”

These are broad and easy! Here are examples of them in action, regarding the climbing roll you mentioned:

• You fall off the wall and land on the other side. You're separated. And to make that have teeth, you hear enemies coming. Can your allies get over the wall in time to help you?
• You fall right into a net (depending on your fictional circumstances: mutant raider trap, giant spider, ...). You're captured.
• You make it up, but there is someone with a gatling gun on the other side, aimed at you. You're in a spot. What now?
• You take one harm from the fall, as established by the wall being dangerously high (why else call for a roll?).
• You drop and lose your weapon, and it falls into a crack on the other side. How to get your stuff back?
• You spot a piece of treasure on the other side! You can grab this opportunity, but only at a cost of leaving your allies behind.

All of these without even knowing anything more than "there's a wall you're climbing." Imagine how these Moves could spark ideas when you've got a whole fictional situation going on!

I love AW because it sets out these stakes before every roll. I know the GM moves. You know the GM moves. No need to discuss the bad things that could happen. Just roll and snowball forward.

Apocalypse World / Re: Hardholder rules question
« on: September 27, 2011, 01:45:58 AM »
It also turns out that "idle" can be much more serious than it sounds. :)

I like these a lot!

That's really all I wanted to say. :)

Monsterhearts / Re: Played today!
« on: November 23, 2010, 02:13:02 PM »
Hey Nils,

As a note from the sidelines: thanks for writing this up! I enjoyed reading it, and if this was a show, I'd totally watch it. :)

Apocalypse World / Re: Playbook: A Boy and His Dog (new)
« on: November 19, 2010, 11:39:55 AM »
Cool! I might steal some of those moves for non-dog things (like Scout--excellent move there).

roleplaying theory, hardcore / Re: The Function of System
« on: November 10, 2010, 02:02:16 PM »
So I like systems that provoke fiction that's not only guided in some way but, more importantly, useful. Or actionable. I haven't really figured out the best word for it.

See, when I'm at the table and it's my turn to say something, Apocalypse World gives me things to say. This requires two things, though: moves and moving pieces. So the moves alone are great but not sufficient, I also need pieces (NPCs, factions, relationships, feelings, details of the fictional environment...) to move. Apocalypse World does a great job in many ways of providing these pieces (I.e., the actionable fiction) through the setup and moves. The Hx questions in the playbooks, more than establishing some number, give players bits and pieces of fiction to work with (again, NPCs, relationships, memories...). Reading a sitch provides reliably actionable fiction. Deep brain scan does. Many of the moves are great at this. Creating Fronts is exactly this. (So are town creation in Dogs and oracles in IAWA; but neither of those games does this as well during actual play, with Dogs' raise and sees requiring it but not providing near as much specific help as AW).

I'm going to point out, too, that I personally could use a little more from AW in the initial setup. "Ask questions like crazy" and "look for where they are vulnerable" are good starts, but more specific questions would, for me, provide more reliably actionable fictional pieces. AW can definitely do this with its default assumption of scarcity, for example, by asking about the various sources of resources, who holds them, and at what price or danger. I mostly point this out because I feel that a more thorough setup could have helped my (greaat) current AW game be even better.

I was thinking about this while reading Monsterhearts, because I think those initial questions will be different for each hack. But also, hacks should make sure that their moves provide good moving pieces/actionable fiction for the game to keep rolling on.

Monsterhearts / Re: Outsourcing
« on: August 17, 2010, 10:44:13 AM »
(Bret just quoted my all-time favorite song! Awesome.)

explodes your love
your insecurity is so soft to me
I can’t let you breathe in
we are falling into us
I see you dying in my eyes

Just let it all go
you're left
so am I
(we go insane)
just let it all go
we leave all inside

- Guano Apes, Quietly.

Apocalypse World / Re: Augury: How does it work in YOUR game?
« on: August 11, 2010, 10:59:47 AM »
In our world, Gitch the Savvyhead (who will be portrayed by Peter Dinklage in the TV adaptation) has a place in his workspace where he uses a giant hookah machine to smoke special stuff from his controlled growing environment. He trapped Doghead's overwhelming lust for H in the hookah with this Augury; it looked like purple swirling smoke.

Later, our driver and perennial fuckup Phoenix decided it was a great idea to smoke that hookah with a woman from the local chopper gang...

Dungeon World / Re: Apocalypse D&D Rules
« on: August 04, 2010, 05:10:13 PM »
Nevermind about carouse, I misremembered that one. I just got the overall feeling that even a 10+ is rarely a full success without drawbacks.

Dungeon World / Re: Apocalypse D&D Rules
« on: August 04, 2010, 04:59:27 PM »
A lot of the moves are pretty harsh even at 10+. Is that by design? Like, I would hate having to bend bars, and I'd definitely never carouse.

Monsterhearts / Re: Stats & Basic Moves?
« on: August 03, 2010, 11:28:31 AM »
Yeah, use Volatile. Much more punchy than Unruly. And in a game that lists Twilight as a source, there should be no worries about overdoing anything. :)

Monsterhearts / Re: Stats & Basic Moves?
« on: July 30, 2010, 04:15:21 PM »
Feral? Unruly?

A Song of Ice and Fire Hack / Re: Playbooks
« on: July 30, 2010, 04:12:52 PM »
The qualities definitely need to follow the "prescriptive and descriptive" path.  That is, if you have "Nobility 5", people treat you that way, but if you get screwed out of your title in-game, you lose that quality and go to "Outlaw 1".  Right? :)

Apocalypse World / Re: Hatchet City with my group, and my Dad
« on: July 29, 2010, 11:31:09 AM »
Wonderful, thanks for sharing!

Monsterhearts / Re: Monster, What is Thine Heart For?
« on: July 27, 2010, 03:51:46 PM »
Instead of scarcity tying people together, it's usually like, "we have to live among humans and pretend to be normal, but we'll never really fit in and always have to fear discovery."

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