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Topics - zefir

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brainstorming & development / Cosmonauts - Retro Hard SF
« on: January 29, 2015, 10:36:37 AM »

I am thinking about Retro SF hack, based on the golden era SF, and leaning more in the retro hard-sf direction (my main inspirations are Polish SF writers - some early works of Stanislaw Lem, but also others - general it will have delicate soviet era flavor): atomic rockets, low techlevel computers and automata, exploration, etc.

Currently I am assuming three archetypes: coordinator & pilot (kind'a captain - can be potentially broken between two classes later on), engineer and scientist.

- every character will be picking options of the rocket, so coordinator will choose general tonnage and drive plus maybe some other options (recon rocket, recon satellites - using film rolls of course), engineer will be able to select additional equipment (ground vehicles, automata, etc), scientist will be picking science equipment ('computer', more extensive lab, thermonuclear devices for seismic tests)
- bits of equipments will be giving additional moves
- tradeoff between the size of rocket and other parameters (only smaller rocket will be able to do atmospheric manuevring) - here I have a bit of difficulty of what should be a tradeoff for larger rocket
- I want this to more or less work as PvE without "hard" conflicts between characters

Characters will be getting mission briefing, which would be kind of main threat for them. No burning, but some kind of graph for creating general mission for MC. High level option:
- exploration (new planet)
- investigation (mysterious signal, some strange activity)
- rescue mission

There will be some mission criteria: "gather information on what happened to previous mission" for instance.
When the characters uncover all important information bits, they can consider their mission done (should they know how much they need to ncover?)

But characters will also have their personal success criteria:
- coordinator: gets points for completing mission as fully as possible
- engineer: points for conserving rocket/team resources and keeping everything working and undestroyed
- scientist: gathering science data (maybe I should call it Impact Factor points?) - this can coincide with the main mission, but doesn't have to
- pilot (optional): planet/system exploration (mapping, etc.)

Moves ideas:
Remind of the Mission - social moves, allowing him to appeal to the characters sense of duty, so they focus on the mission.

Repair - fix stuff, which will eat up resources and in case of 7-9 can also need some additional stuff (cannibalise something in the rocket, gather some local resources, use up more spare parts)

Research - gather research data, in case of 7-9 could get entire team in jeopardy, break something, disturb something locally.

Explore - this I have trouble with.

- how much picks characters should have
- how much dedicated moves
- what general moves to pick for them, and what moves to leave for fiction
- should all character be able to use moves from special stuff picked by others
-- no (why?)
-- yes (won't that make them feel redundant?)
-- yes but with lower attributes ratings (maybe the better you are at 'your' stuff, the worse you are at other)
- balancing rocket size - higher 'mission cap' for larger?

How to do development:
- don't: one mission - one player wins
- additional options for rocket (with rocket size dependent on how much options players taken)
- additional character development
- larger crew with smaller specialty areas (engineer + robotics expert instead of engineer, multiple specialty scientists)

Things I missed here? Obvious issues I am not seeing?

My first hack idea, and any insights, reading suggestions, inputs - anything, will be very welcome.

Apocalypse World / A bit help on custom between-session moves
« on: December 10, 2013, 10:10:09 AM »

I need to design three custom moves, that will help me determine what exactly happened between sessions.
A bit of background - the previous governor of the city is being overthrown. On the last sessions, three players (Chopper, who will be changing the playbook to Hardholder, Operator and Gunlugger) managed to destroy the gang that was supposed to help the current governor in defending his position, and Operator orchestrated alliance with Chopper and one of important town families. My idea is, they will overthrow Governor, with help with another neutral gang (called Mustangs). However - majority wants that to happen off screen (and I agree), so I wanted to design custom moves for the 3 that were on last session (2 were not present, so I will assume they return after dust settles).

What I have so far:

For Chopper and to-be Hardholder:
Roll +Hard, on 10+ keep 3, on 7-9 keep 1:
- small number of casualties in your gang
- Governor was captured (didn't run away)
- no important gang members from your gang were harmed/died
- small destructions to the town
- you enriched yourself additionally (+3 barter)

For Operator
Roll +Cool, on 10+ keep 3, on 7-9 keep 1:
- you don't get new obligation gig toward Mustangs
- no one from your team was hurt/died
- you enriched yourself (+3 barter)
- you enriched yourself (+2 barter)

For Gunlugger
Roll +Cool, on 10+ keep 3, on 7-9 keep 1:
- you didn't get hurt
- you enriched yourself (+3 barter)
- Your favorite Pub is untouched (the place that he both sleeps, and likes to drink very much - closest to home, that character has)

I am a bit at loss for more options, and I am unsure how much of them I should really include - if 5 isn't a bit too much. When they fail, or succeed partially, most of the nagative options will come to life.
Thoughts, suggestions?

Apocalypse World / Chopper's uniqueness - or lack thereof
« on: November 08, 2013, 02:43:24 AM »
Hello Again - thanks for responses in previous post.

In one of the campaigns I'm playing in AW, I joined group that played quite a bit - Hardholder, Angel and Battle Babe - characters have pretty large number of improvements.
I picked chopper, and now I am feeling that my character is kind of redundant.

I knew and expected that he will have less improvments then others, but issue sprouts from something else. I get feeling, that everything my character can do - someone else can do better. I have large Hard, but Battle Babe is superior in this - better weapons, better moves. But that's fine - Chopper's essence is his gang. But - BB has gang (bought with one of improvements) which is the same size, and has similar stats (and was additionally armed and equipped for barter - so they have cars).

So I guess my question here is - why choppers gang is not better. Other characters can take holding, but hardholder has the best, they can take a cult - but hocus has the biggest - but in case of chopper, only serious difference is his move. But to be honest, if you have character with Hard +3, Leadership only fails if you roll 3, so that doesn't make all that difference.

What do you guys think about this?

Apocalypse World / Can MC use players/characters moves?
« on: November 05, 2013, 05:33:35 AM »
I played and GMed few sessions of AW already, but I'm still unsure of this - and repeated searches through the rulebook didn't answer this in straightforward manner.

Can MC use basic and/or character special moves? From what I understand he can only use the MC moves - which usually allow for the same things, but without dice rolls and mainly as reactions to what players do (or as actions when they do nothing).
But that would mean that you can't (for instance) have NPC skinner who would hypnotize one of the players.

Is that correct, or did I miss something when I read through rulebook?

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