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Topics - Judd

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brainstorming & development / Daydreaming about Cyberpunk A.W.
« on: July 02, 2020, 12:41:49 PM »
I've been thinking out loud about using AW Burned Over to play Cyberpunk. I know there are other games that do this but I dig AW and think it can juuuust about do this out of the box.

I've got this strange Cyberpunk Nurse Asynchronous Video Play by Post game going with Daniel and it is fun. Hot damn...Burned Over. Dag, it is good.

And now I'm daydreaming about what this would look like as a finished product.

A supplement to Burned Over? A re-written AW with Burned Over playbooks?

I'd want essays from folks about gender, race, afrofuturistic cyberpunk, UX design in the near future and maybe something about hacking in games and media. I picture 3000 word essays at 15 cents a word. I've got people in mind. This daydream is specific.

And that is where I'm at. I just learned that this forum was back up, which brings me great joy and thought I'd share these thoughts.

Questions, warnings, cheers, hugs, and critique are welcome...

Apocalypse World / The Crests - Water, Surf, Bro's and Blood
« on: July 15, 2013, 01:27:47 AM »
This apocalypse is a mess. Super-heroes caused an apocalypse and the players are living in a surf commune on top of the ocean-flooded Rockie Mountains.The hardhold makes its surplus by desalianating water, making it drink-able.

Norrin Radd - Hardholder - he goes back and forth between being an affable, joking surfer-bra to being a frightening killer with an AK who will kill you while smiling and assuring everyone it was the right thing. Jay has him take stands at times that surprise me. Most folks just call him Radd.

Burdock - Savvyhead - known around the hold as the good cop, or the reasonable one. He's the one you go to if you've fucked up and want to soften things up before going to Radd. Yeah, he's an odd one but he's a nice guy and more often than not makes sense.

Trey - Gunlugger - she's the monster under the bed and the hammer Radd uses to bang on any nails who need banging. She's also an ogre of a lady who has a thing for Burdock and he doesn't seem to have much of a clue.

Two games in and we've got a shitty map of the local islands and mention of the Dark-side up north. Jason is the one who drops the most super-hero stuff and I have been putting in dribs and drabs here and there. They have a glove that seems like something off of Tony Stark's right hand, a big gray repulsor ray that Trey has taken a shine to.

Wisher had the glove and turns out he got it from an Atlantean, dropping intel to them in a bottle into the ocean, letting them know about the Crest's defenses and such.

This past game, all of the Sex Moves got activated right before the big feast. Trey slept with the bone-setting/barber, Mojo - but it wasn't exactly a love match. He just ended up crying to her, talking about his late wife after they both got off. Radd slept with Balls, who had been with Roark before Trey put a grenade in his sternum. No hard feelings, Balls wants to be the Number Two. We'll see how that works out. Burdock fixed Wise's cybernetic arm, in what was probably the most intimate moment of the evening, him taking apart the arm, cleaning it out and putting it back together so that she wouldn't have the shakes anymore.

Next game they execute Radd's plan, figuring out how to deal with the Aramadans. Armada is a string of boats out at sea who circle the islands and they came to the Crests, hat in hand, with nothing to barter but needing water. What they said was that they lost their usual shipment of fish due to a bad storm but word around the camp-fire is that they are sizing the Crests up, seeing what they will do and where the Armadans will side if a full-on water rebellion goes down.

It is Apocalypse World, so it is a big, glroious web of names, desires and lusts all pinging off one another.

Good times.

Inspired by: a conversation on G+, Apocalypse World, Sorcerer, this blog post , City of Fire and Coin, Dark Heart of the Dreamer, A|State and World of Dungeons.

Thoughts: How short can we make an AW hack?

The City: a short role-playing game about life in a fantastic city

One person will play a character, the other will be the Master of Ceremonies (M.C.).

Character Creation

Please answer these questions.

I live in the City, my district is known for ____________.

When I was younger, I got into trouble ____________. Now I try to stay out of trouble by ____________.

My apartment is above a ____________ shop. My neighbors are a ____________, a ____________ and a ____________.

The City has been through some rough times. When ____________ happened, the neighborhood dealt with it by ____________. I ____________ with my neighbor ____________ and ____________, a member of my family.

Today the status quo of my life was turned upside down when ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.


When there is a conflict roll two six sided dice.

On a 10+, success. On a 7-9, success but there is a complication or a hard choice. Less than that is a failure.

Moves play with this die rolling formula. Moves can be City Rituals, Civil Unrest, Governmental Mandates, Monstrous Details, District Happenings, and City Laws.

Master of Ceremonies

  • It is your job to play the characters of the city as if they are real people.
    Celebrate the player's creative input by challenging the status quo of the player character.
    Offer interesting complications and hard choices for rolls of 7-9
    Offering interesting consequences for failed rolls.
    Ask the player interesting questions.
    Put obstacles in the way of the city's deeper mysteries while at the same time, unveiling those mysteries.
    Make new moves with the player when they discover City Rituals.
    Make new moves on your own when they are needed in play.
    Draw maps, jot down district names and other details on scraps of paper.


  • Play your character as if they are real.
    Seek out the City's mysteries.

More Players

Someone else wants to play? Fine.

Answer these questions:

During the main character's troubled youth, I met them through  ____________. I moved to the other side of the City in the district known for  ____________ . I had to leave that district and move back home because ____________________________________. I sought out the main character because ________________________________________________.

Apocalypse World / L.O.E. Apocalpyse: Leaving Iss
« on: January 13, 2012, 10:59:23 AM »
Andrew, our new housemate, hasn't gamed before, so I suggested a few games and he chose Apocalypse World.  I suggested a few choices for apocalypses and luckily, he chose my favorite of the bunch, Jay Walton's Low Earth Orbit apocalypse.  Fantastic.

Andrew played an Operator, Lafferty who did surveillance for the local satellite lord, Roark, making sure the Angel, Doc, stayed put and didn't defect to a different community.

Anthony played a Battlebabe, Raymond Omega, who is a Bladerunner-style replicant, a cold killer with cool clothes.

Matteo played Doc, the Angel, who I didn't have much of a read on but seemed to be a jaded pragmatic guy out to do the least amount of harm possible while still looking out for himself.

The first scene of the game tipped the rest of the scenario.  Miller, a local pilot, came in to Doc at his module aboard the International Space Station with two thugs to talk him into coming with her to a new satellite she was starting up.  She wouldn't say how she was doing it but she was starting a new joint with hydroponic vegetables.

"You'll be able to take a proper shit, Doc."

Doc was in.

Things went poorly between the thugs outside.  Ray and Lafferty got into a brawl with them and the thugs both ended up getting got.

After that it was a blur of failed rolls, tense stand-offs, machine gun fire and zero-g brawls in the void.

In the end, they ended up with Miller, back in Eden, her hydroponic satellite garden.  The new joint was on an un-mapped trajectory that no one had found and was currently manned by a skeleton crew.  If/When we play again, the crew will go out into the other satellites and try to start pilfering solid personnel to make the move to Eden.

I had to get a bunch of things done after the game so I didn't get to talk it over with Andrew but will do so when I have a moment, get his thoughts on his first table-top RPG experience.

Dungeon World / From Grundloch's Surprise to the Spanterhook Slaughterhouse
« on: September 23, 2011, 01:00:05 AM »
I am having a stupid amount of fun playing this game.

Its not fully baked yet but what's there is nifty and even better, what's to come is damned exciting.

The second most powerful thief in the guild is the Extortionist whose stats are as follows:

level 4, 15 HP, 3 Armor, 9 Damage (Mace)

Every other thief had 5 damage tops.  I should’ve corrected the mistake.  Instead, I stuck to the text and killed Aaron’s 2nd level fighter/elf from last game, killed Anthony’s cleric twice and he had to change alignment and change which god he worshipped.  I should’ve noticed it and switched it but I didn’t.  Bummer on me.

Apocalypse World / Just Outside the City: Five Years Later
« on: September 17, 2011, 04:57:32 PM »
We haven't played all summer, so I cooked up this custom move/letter thing to get NPC's into place and get a feel for what the landscape looks like:

Dear Apocalypse Worlders,
Five years have gone by and the threat from the south never came, the remnants of the Five Points Empire collapsed like a flan in a cupboard.  New York City continues to eat itself in uncountable petty feuds.  The cannibals have crammed their way into the southern tip of the Garden.  Meanwhile the Hudson River Valley Compact has flourished and despite the harsh winter famines, commerce has blossomed and the roads were cleared.

There is a murmuring among the populace, some say it is time for elections and others say that democracy got them into the Big Mess in the first place.

Choose an NPC from your list.  You can choose to Hold them Tight or Set them Up.

Hold them Tight means you took them into your confidence and kept them with you during these past five years.  Roll ______________ to find out how that’s going.

Set them Up means you saw to them finding their own place and now they are in charge of some thing, place or organization in the area.  You can find that place on the map or you can explain what they are now in charge of.  Roll ______________ to find out how that’s going.

I'll have every PC listed with a list of relevant NPC's and we'll figure out what is going on in the post-apocalyptic Hudson River Valley.  I've missed them, being a fan of the PC's means missing games is like missing an old, fictional friends.

And of course it will be nice to see the real folks, face to face again as we get our soups, tea's and jackets ready for autumn.

Some nights I just don't feel like dropping the hammer hard.  Tonight I did a ton of hinting at future badness and vomiting forth.

When we last gamed, Doc had announced that he was going to set up his learning hospital in Hoover and he toasted the hospital's founding with the Engineer-in-Chief, having poisoned her glass.  The other PC's knew.

Hoover went into an all-night festival, everyone was getting drunk but Harlan, Cybelle and Doc were uneasy.  Harlan hit the town with Pima, accepting the free drinks that came with being the Croaker's driver for the night.  Cybelle just kept a watch out and Doc went back to the Croaker and went to sleep, nervous and feeling guilty.

That morning the engineers came for the Doc; they needed his help.  Phoenix, the Engineer-in-Chief was sick, really sick.  Doc went into Hoover Dam itself with Cybelle, saying that he might need her as his nurse.

Doc convinced Gold, Phoenix's second that he was legit after Reading a Person.

How would I get her to believe that I was worth supporting when this was all over?

You'd have to come clean and not bullshit Phoenix, not tell her that this sickness was a flu but that she was going to die.

Phoenix wanted to leave her brain for Hoover, having her soul stored in a glass bottle; once the Angel told her that she was likely to die soon she called for a quorum of engineers in order to make her sacrifice.

Before this, Cybelle had skulked around, looking into the Psychic Maelstrom, seeing if there were any other Brainers among the Engineers.  She picked up on two readings, the flickering of Phoenix and another odd thing way off down a hallway.  She came to a barrel-size glass tube with rubber stoppers on either end, attached to an old speaker-phone.

She figured out that it was Lovelocke, the Chemist's best friend and former Brainer, stored here for the past year.  She wanted to take his stored mind into her own, even though she already had a hitch-hiker, Ma, a failed roll from the first game.  She rolled under fire to see if she could take in Lovelocke.  The dice demanded a harder choice...sure, you could get Lovelocke but you only have room for two in there.  You'll have to leave Ma in the barrel.

Yup, Ma was left in a brain-tube in Hoover and Lovelocke was in her head now.

Good stuff.

Other moments to write about:
Phoenix into Oblivion
Doc and the Engineer's Convocation
Harlan's Drug Run

Tons of sitches and people read before this one moment...

The Five Points Empire is at work with Mrs. Dubya and her manufactories in Albany.  After some deliberation, the Hudson River Compact rides to aid her.

They attack in a brutal multi-pronged attack with Dent's Demons falling like old world para-troopers from the overpass that goes over their camp, Bullet's new truck spitting out heavy calibre machine gun fire and Baby's Boys riding in like a biker calvalry.

In creeps Marsh, under fire, with his tribal cult.  He comes face to face with number I, the creepy brainer kid, one of four left in Five Points.  The kid surrenders when Marsh goes aggro.

It is the first big battle like this where no one was shot-up terribly, no mad dashes to find a doctor, no comas, no scars.  Their losses are minimal.

I watched Padraic really think about this and then, in the middle of every thing he says, "Fuck this.  I walk up to the kid and touch him on the forehead, 'Go kill your brothers.'" He rolls for his move, puppet strings and nails it.

"Then I hand him his gun back."

The kid get's in one of the armored school-buses and drives away.

The Five Points Empire is done.

There aren't any really threatening groups out there anymore. I think they will spend the summer exploring, securing and governing this section of New York State that they have carved out for themselves.

Apocalypse World / Just Outside the City: Mission Aborted
« on: May 16, 2011, 01:44:06 AM »

We haven't played in a while and of the regular players, only Barry and Padraic could be there tonight.  The good news is that both Barry and Padraic have extra characters who haven't gotten a whole lot of table time.  Padraic made up his Savvyhead and we launched into Barry's Quarantine.  He had woken up the Major and was sent north to the nearest Army base to find remnants of the chain of command.

Randall, a friend of Barry's and guy who I've known from around for a while, was there when I arrived.  Barry asked if it was cool if he made up a character too and I reckoned that was fine.  Randall made up a male Battlebabe named Butane, a bad-ass with a monstrous rifle and a bright blue tuxedo.

The Quarantine made a roll to find out another clue about the apocalypse.  Barry asked me what they had tried and failed.  I told him that the army had started a psychic spec ops battalion but that it had ended poorly and his squad had been called on to hunt them down and kill them.

"So, you're saying that my squad hunted psychics?"

"Army trained experimental psychics...yeah."


Padraic made his Savvyhead, Nimbus, whose workshop was a Goodyear blimp.

I picked a spot on the New York State map, between Albany and Watertown and put the town of Tower.

Maybe Seven Samurai...nope

I needed to bring everyone together.  I decided that the blimp was a solid place to start.  Nimbus was bringing it down, a storm was incoming and a town built around a radio tower was the best bet.  Everyone saw the dirigible land in a nearby field.

Tower is a small town, behind on its payments to the Five Points Empire.  Their hardholder, Mother is hoping to get the radio working again in order to communicate with other towns.  But the Five Points have made it clear that they had to pay their tribute.  And in walk the PC's...

Mother was talking to Nimbus when Captain Dale came out of the forest in a poncho made by squid-eaters to help disguise the squad.  Dale looks like Five Points Empire muscle.  She draws her pistol, starts screaming at him.

Dale puts out his hands tells her that he is not affiliated with any local groups and asks her to notice the laser sites blooming all over her chest.

Rolled Manipulation and failed, one of the many failed rolls Barry would make that night.

She opens fire on Dale but the kevlar soaks it up and his damage roll is fine, he ends up on his back, dropped his gun.  The squad opens fire and she dies, the townsfolk who came to see the dirigible run, and Nimbus screams, runs towards his air-ship.

And that was the last we saw of Tower for the night.

Other Bits:

Butane's Intro
The Storm
Into the Maelstrom
Seize by Force
Seize by Force

It has been over a month since we gamed.  It seemed like a good night for letters:

Dear Driver,
You’ve gotten to know the roads around the Hub-towns pretty well, roll +Cool:

10+ Choose 3 from the List of St. Dale

7-9 Choose 1 from St. Dale and 1 from Crash and Burn

Miss, all Crash, all Burn.

List of St. Dale
•   Ask Read a Sitch for the roads and drivers around Hoover, get as many questions as you rolled on this move.
•   +1 barter for some parts you’ve picked up here and there.
•   +1 forward on your next driving related move because you know the area so damned well.

Crash and Burn List
•   You are driving one of the cars, you’re bleeding and the car’s lurching back into the Hub with trouble in your rearview.
•   One of the cars is not drive-able until you can get some parts and some fixin’.
•   You took a nasty wound and you are bleeding all over the damned seat.  Mark your wound countdown at 3.

Pete rolled 7-9 had Harlan read a sitch on the roads of Hoover and decided to be lurching back into the Hub with trouble in the rearview.  He was on his way towards Cocktail with a band of scavengers from the Roark clan in his rearview.  Due to a misunderstanding, they thought the Croaker's crew was trying to take their claim.

Dear Brainer,
Welcome to the life of a working stiff.  The good news is, take +1 forward for being well fed for the first time in your life.  Other than that, roll + Weird:

On a 10+ You can ask 3 questions from the list below about the Chemist or anyone in his employ.
On a 7-9 you can ask 1 question from the list below and somehow the Chemist get’s to ask one of those questions to you.
On a miss, you answer a question from the list below and the Chemist things you’ve stumbled on something you shouldn’t have.  Brace for trouble.

The List Below
•   Who do you love most in the world and what secret are you hiding for them?
•   If things move according to plan, where do you see yourself in five years?
•   If things go to shit, where do you see yourself in a week?

Sara rolled really well and asked 3 questions about the Chemist.  She found out that he loves his wife most and that her secret is that she is a burned out brainer from Area 51.  If things go according to plan, he'll have his own electricity in Vegas and no longer have to pay taxes to Hoover.  And if things go to shit, if his family was killed, he'd either throw himself into the canyon or walk into the canyon and let them ligers eat him.

They parted on good terms, as her month of employment was over.  She read a sitch and saw that as long as she didn't talk a bunch about the inner workings of his operation, he'd let her go and keep his side of the bargain.  Hum gave her a lift back to Cocktail. 

Dear Angel,
If you want, the hospital’s building is underway. Where is it?  If so, roll +Sharp:

On a 10+ you have +1 Barter from people excited to have an up and running hospital, you have +1 forward on your next roll advocating or defending the hospital and you & a small gang, a clan of scavengers has adopted the hospital as their place to protect, painting and tattooing red crosses on their necks and faces.

On a 7-9, choose one from the list above and you have a spy in your shop.

On a miss: The construction is a total mess and you need 3 barter to get it up and running again or else this site is going to go fall apart inside a few days.

If you aren’t setting up shop with the hospital, roll +Hot to see how things are going between you and Bar.

On a 10+, you two have really connected.  She gets to ask a Brainer question about you and you get to ask a Brainer question about her.

On a 7-9 You are both having good fun, nothing wrong with that.  Where was the last place you two had sex?

On a miss, you are in bed with her when catastrophe strikes…

Anthony wanted more time to think about the hospital, so we just rolled for him and Bar.  He got 10, so they learned about one another and are really close now.

To post later:
The Roarks
Pima and Harlan, up a tree
He shook her hand.
A toast

Apocalypse World / Lights of Hoover 7: Slow night in Hoover
« on: March 30, 2011, 11:22:58 AM »
In which a series of dice roll results send the Doc to Hoover

Visage is one of the mechanics in Wheelyard.  He has a tumor on the side of his jaw that pushes against his teeth and pains him.  The doc tried to at least take some teeth out to relieve the pain.  I did it as an Under Fire roll and he rolled a 7, so he couldn't do it entirely and will need to put Visage under anesthesia, put him unconscious for a while.

So, Anthony has Doc try out his new move Finger in Every Pie.  He get's another 7, so he get's nitrous oxide but its geared for a car, not for a person.  He needs someone to rig it so that he can apply it to Visage.  The mechanics have no idea how to make this work.  They offer to rig it up to the Croaker but don't know how to rig it so that a person could use it (rolled a d6, giving it a 50/50 shot if the Wheelyardies could do it - they couldn't).

The engineers would know how to do something like this. 

But before that...

Cybelle is sent to Hoover to meet the Chemist's drug dealers there and to sit in on their weekly card game.  She is told they have a guest sitting in on the game and that she should get a read on him and get a read on the Hoover dealers.

I knew that the card game would get hit by a jackal, Omar Little-style because Pima wasn't going to be there.  But suddenly, Pima was in Hoover.  But certainly the Doc would keep Pima close, right?

Nope, Doc reasoned out that having Vegas' best gun with him when he goes to talk to the Engineer-in-chief, Phoenix, would be a shitty idea.  He gave Pima his gun and sent him on his way to have some fun in Hoover.

So, we've got the Doc heading to see Phoenix, Harlan and an engineer are heading to the Vegas drug dealers' weekly card game (yeah, the engineer is the special guest the Chemist wants Cybelle to brain scan) and Pima out there in Hoover, gun in hand.

No one knows the card game is going to get jacked.

Apocalypse World / Lights of Hoover 6: Working for a living.
« on: March 23, 2011, 09:44:51 AM »
Doc and Harlan left the Chemist's place in Vegas (along with the NPC's, St. John, Shigusa and Mox and Pima).

Why was Pima, the Chemist's best gun with them?

Because the Chemist pressured him into becoming the Doc's apprentice over breakfast.

Pima offered the Doc his gun (he has two guns tattoed on his abdomen, so that they stuck out as if he always has guns in tucked into his pants).  Doc didn't want to take it until Harlan explained.  "He is taking you as his shogun and is offering you his sword.  Take it."

Doc took the gun after some hemming and hawing.

They drove out of Vegas, leaving Cybelle, who was working for the Chemist, Graham now.  Cybelle was escorted to one of Vegas' manufactories, where the drugs are cooked.  Graham introduced her to Nava, an elderly Mexican lady who shook hands with her before the Chemist said, "Cybelle is my counselor, much like Lovelock used to be."

Nava took her hand away, looking at Cybelle's Violation Glove like it was a venomous snake.  "Fucking brujah."  Nava and Graham sat down in the office to talk and the Chemist gave Cybelle leave to walk around the place.  "Feel free to go where you need to go and get a feel for the place."

Word had gone out among the workers that Cybelle was the new Lovelock and people started to get good and nervous.  She walked around, nice and slowly and one guy just broke.  He jumped a guard and took his gun, starting screaming that no witch was going to poke around in his brain and that he didn't steal much.

Cybelle threw knives at him and disarmed him, allowing the other guards to jump the guy and hog-tied him up (roll under fire).  I probably let too much get done with one Roll Under Fire roll but so be it.  The gun-man was taken into the basement and not seen again.

Happy with the whole endeavor, Graham called it a day and gave Cybelle some midnight reading, SPEC OPS MANUAL 053: Psychic Warfare.  We'd make that move in a bit.

Meanwhile, the guys were going out and doing their rounds.  They stopped by Cocktail to visit her working boys and girls.  A windstorm had swept through and taken her roof right off.  The prostitutes were grabbing bits of tin roof off the ground and putting them into piles.  The Croaker's crew helped as best they could but it was clear that Bar was short on temper and short on time.  They left, making their way around the rim.

The next town is called Gun.  Gun is a shack in the middle of the fucking desert with a speaker/mic, like in an old world fast food joint.  There was a dumb-waiter where one could put their gun and a barely understandable voice from under-god-knows-where-the-fuck.  Harlan got his shotgun sawed off proper and when Doc asked if they needed anything, the voice said that they did not.

Puzzled, they left for the next town on the rim, the Pit.  Pit is a pit with X-mas lights hanging from poles all around it.  Two biker gangs were parked around the pit and two gang members were disarmed and stripped naked, tossed into the pit until one beat the other and then all beef was said to be over.  One gang was on dirt bikes, they knew these folk, led by Esmerelda.  The other gang was led by a tall black fella named Lincoln, who had a necklace of shiny pennies.

"Your boy lost...he need me?" Doc asked.

"Nope, but thanks," Lincoln responded.

That was that.

Next around the Rim were the ruins of Library.  There was nothing but a burned out foundation and the concrete foundation, covered by sand.  Harlan and Doc walked around alone, talking about the politics of putting up the hospital here.

"I think its spitting in Phoenix's eye to set up here, Doc."

"Whaddya say, Harlan, want to stand up to her?  Want to set up here and fight?"

"No offense, Doc but this hospital was always your dream.  I'm always for moving on."

Then they ran across the map in the concrete.  They found a big ole map, etched in the concrete of Hoover and the Rim and the roads that connect them all together.

There was:

(gas, duh)

(drinks, sex)

(ammo, guns, repair)

(conflict mediation)


(parts, fixin)

(Ligers, Chaos)

(electricity, light)

Harlan made his new move, the one that allows him to read weird shit off of inanimate objects.

It was the first of failed Weird-based rolls that would send the game into an unforeseen direction.

Harlan's hitch-hiker

He failed his roll to read the lettering of Library, his new Weird read-stuff move from another playbook.  Suddenly, he was in a man's brain during his last moments of life.  He was in the back of an army truck.  It smelled like some kind of flammable liquid, like kerosene but worse.  They were setting their flamethrowers to burn Library down; it was a truck full of Engineers from Hoover.  The guy whose POV he is stuck in doesn't want to do it and says so.  He says burning down Library is wrong.

Someone slits his throat and he bleeds to death, watched by the men and women he thought were his friends.

The guy's name is Brooks and he's now in Harlan's head, another hitch-hiker, like Ma is in Cybelle's head.

Harlan found the man's bones nearby.

Speaking of Cybelle...

She read the book:
Cybelle reads the bookWhen you read SPEC OPS MANUAL 053: Psychic Warfare, roll + Sharp:

"It reads like stereo instructions but the stereo is your mind and the music it plays is the act of killing people."

On a 10+, you can take 1 of the following 3:

+1 forward with any Weird based roll used to hurt or infiltrate someone/something.
Take an XP in order to buy up your Weird stat or buy a Weird-based move (custom or from another playbook)
The next time you are in deep shit, you can roll Weird for the Seize by Force move.

On 7-9, you can take any one of the above but the MC can ask you to Roll Under Fire when you are doing something perfectly normal.  The book is training you to see people's minds as nothing but pieces in a wargame.

On a miss, this fucking book doesn't make any kind of fucking sense.  Fuck this.  And you also get the consequences of the 7-9 but with no good stuff to go with it.

I had it as a Weird roll but I like it better as Sharp.  I'll talk to Sarah about it, see if she's cool with future readings being Sharp rather than Weird.  I reckon she'll be able to read it once a game or so, though I allowed for two readings this game but from here on out, once a game seems reasonable, unless lots of time passes or something.

She failed.  She didn't grok the book at all.  What is the next thing Cybelle does, the next normal, human thing?

"She's been reading all night.  I guess she goes down to the kitchen, frustrated, looking for food."

"Roll under Fire."


"You have a bowl of chicken soup in your hands and your dog is growling at something.  At your feet is the quartermaster, the cook, the guy in the kitchen...what was his name?  Anyway, he's bleeding out of his nose and when he fell, he must've hit his head on the metal kitchen counter.  What the fuck just happened?"

The still-unnamed guy had some kind of seizure.  Cybelle screamed for help and Graham sent out a car to find the Doc.  The cook was put in a bed but he wasn't responding at all.  Everyone's spooked.  They remember the kind of shit Lovelock used to do with his brain and they're looking at Cybelle and they are fucking scared.

Cybelle goes into her room, throws up and locks the door.  Graham goes to talk to her and asks her if something happened, if the cook somehow provoked her.  She says that she really doesn't know what happened.

After the Chemist leaves, Cybelle spends the night talking with Ma, who doesn't know what the fuck happened either.  All she knows is that after reading the book she started seeing minds like pieces on a chess board, like things to be taken and something happened that she couldn't control.

She was still talking to Ma when Harlan and Doc came to her room, after the Doc had a look at the cook in a coma.  Harlan could hear her talking to someone in her room.

Other things to write about:
Doc meets Lovelocke
Harlan, Hum and Brook take a ride in the sweet new car
Cybelle and the Chemist talk
Not a whole lotta rolls tonight

the nerve core / A new thread about the Hoover game.
« on: March 23, 2011, 12:31:18 AM »
I posted a thread about tonight's game and I can see it on the AW forum but when I click to get into the AW forum it isn't there.

This happened once before, I saved the contents of the thread to e-mail in case it get's nixed.

Any idea what's up with that?

Apocalypse World / Lights of Hoover 5: The Chemist's Den
« on: March 10, 2011, 11:16:59 PM »
They spent the night in a converted executive office of some kind, now outfitted with military cots and tin tubs for bathing.  The bathroom worked.  This was some luxe shit, going on here.

Harlan went for a drive in the Chevy Interceptor, made by the GM.  I wish I could duplicate the speech he gave to Pima, who road shotgun.  Cubic inches, zero-to-sixty, make, model, how the frame ripples like water to keep bullets was inspiring shit.  St. Dale, who died so the roads could remain open after the apocalypse, works his will through Harlan and he did again today.  Harlan spray-painted 3's on the doors of the Interceptor.

They road down the crotch-rocket bikes that were careening down the highway with stolen drugs and when a semi-truck hit the highway from the off-ramp, Harlan just drove the Interceptor right up into the truck's loading dock.  When it was over, they had a semi, had the stolen drugs and had their enemies dead.

Pima was shocked that everything went so smooth.  Harlan seemed unsurprised, having always put his faith in Dale and his holy number of three.

We did some rolling under fire, some seize by force and all was well, Pete rolled high and killed this mission.  It was nice to see the Driver be awesome.

Other things to write about:

Cybelle's new job
Doc's politics
Hum's stupid
Harlan's new ride
Desert Junkies Attack

It has been a while so we started with some winter letters.

The Hudson River Valley shuts down as the river freezes up and the squid-eaters hole up in their villages for the winter.  A few squiddy families have sled dogs and will run messages up and down the valley but never into the city.

Dear Driver,
West Point is in pretty good shape.  Your main enemy for the winter is complacency.  The lumberjacks turn to drugs, gambling and worse.
When winter grips West Point, roll + Sharp:

On a 10+ pick 3 from the fireplace.
On 7-9 pick 1 from the fireplace.
On a miss, we’ll start our game with big problems.

The Fireplace:   
•   You keep Rubbin out of trouble for the winter, away from the crazy-bad shit the lumberjacks are getting themselves into.  +1 forward when you roll concerning Rubbin

•   You manage to regulate the lumberjacks, keeping their depravity from becoming too damned out of control.  +1 forward when you roll concerning the lumberjacks

•   You spend your free winter time bonding with a player character, which one?  What do they learn about you and what do you learn about them?  +1 Hx with that character

•   You cut a good deal with the dog-squiddies and keep the market place stocked with goods.  +1 barter

He rolled over ten and chose to keep Rubbin safe, keep the lumberjacks from going too far off the deep end and keeping the market place stocked.  In hindsight, this was kind of a boring move.

Dear Chopper,
Winter closes in on Kip-town, roll +Hard

On a 10+, some people die and some live and you had to make some hard fucking decisions but you deal and can choose 1 of the following:
-   The Kip-town guard is back up to muster, all 40 of ‘em to replace the Demons.
-   The Boys have their bikes primed and ready to roll for spring.
-   You have, Rook, a defector from the Five Points Empire and he is willing to spill all kinds of shit about those folks for a promise of protection.

On a 7-9, shit doesn’t go so well, choose 1:
-   You hold it together but you are in debt to Albany’s Mrs. Dubya, owing her five barter.
-   Half of the population either up and leaves or up and dies.  Them’s the breaks.
On a miss, Kip-town is a fucking starving mess.

She rolled great and elected to have 2 that I don't remember and also Rook.  Yay, Rook!

Dear Brainer:
The tribe has asked you to find other people native to this continent by traversing the Psychic Maelstrom.
When looking for other tribal folk in the Psychic Maelstrom, roll +Weird:

On a 10+ you make contact with other shaman in the Pacific Northwest, in the far, far north and the Yucatan Peninsula.  None of them is having an easy time of it but you can contact them with some difficulty if need be.

On a 7-9, you make contact but something/someone/what-the-fuck followed you back and is now stalking you whenever you open yourself to the Psychic Maelstrom.  You can feel it scratching at the membrane between the world and the maelstrom.

On a miss you don’t find shit and that thing found its way into one of your people.  Shit, shit, shit.  Which one?

This was the weakest one.  He rolled over ten.  Ah well.

Dear Maestro’D,
Winter is an odd time.  Folks have little to barter but everyone wants to eat and fuck even more.  What is a gal to do? 
When you seek to balance your joint’s books for the winter, roll + Sharp:

On a 10+, you notice some outstanding debts that are owed you through the eating and fucking of their gang-members/representatives.  Choose 3 people who owe you 1 or 2 barter.
-   Mrs. Dubya from Albany
-   Millions from Pole
-   Baby from Kip-town
-   Marsh from Bear
-   That Squid-eater asshole who drives the big garbage boat the one whose dad committed suicide after that nonsense in Kip-town.

On a 7-9, one person owes you and another you owe.  Choose from the list above.

On a miss, the MC chooses someone on or off the list and you owe them.  How the fuck did that happen?

She ended up missing this roll, so she owed Baby.  I was considering making it Mrs. Dubya but for some reason, having it be a player made more sense to me.

Dear Dent:
How is married life treating you?
When you try to make good on your married life, roll + Hot:

On a 10+, life is fucking good.  Lee has taken up as the Demons’ den mother and you are finding that your bride fits into your lifestyle really well. +1 forward when dealing with the Demons.

On a 7-9, man, relationships are fucking work and Lee is a whole lotta work.  Something is wrong and you need some fucking advice.  Take +1 advice if you talk to someone other than just your mask, an actual living person (stacks with the +1 from your mask’s advice, if you do both).

On a miss, shit at home is bad, something is really wrong.  Until you sort it out, when you go home, you roll Under Fire.

He rolled 7-9 but hasn't sought out anyone for relationship advice...yet.

The tone was set.

Things to write about:

Marsh sees Baby's lovers fight
The Blacksmith and the Midwife
The Demons do their thang
Bullet's coma

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