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Topics - Aaron Friesen

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Hey all! So this is a hack that I've been writing on and off roughly since I found Apocalypse World. The number of times I've scrapped all text and started anew I can no longer count. I figured at the very least I would stop hiding it in the bowels of my hard drive, even if it's in the particularly rough form it is now. Enjoy!


Colours In Conflict

Colours In Conflict is a game about the end of the world. Not leading up to it, but what happens right after. Maybe you saw the end coming, maybe you didn't, but it doesn't matter. One way or another the mists of oblivion, aether, swept in and destroyed everything except small scraps now floating in a sea of nothing. There's hope though. You play beings of deific stature, passionate creatures of great power: Malari, or Painters. The now empty world is your canvas, and primal elements and emotions are your media. As you find Keys, remnants of what was, you can bring back what was or use the nascent power to create something new. That said, aether still encroaches and threatens to take away that which you work so hard to return to the world, and the light of truth that burns within you may be the only thing that can keep it back.

Inspired by games like Mystic Empyrean, Bastion, and Nobilis, as well as other works such as Homestuck, Dresden Codak, The Neverending Story, and the Malazan Book Of The Fallen series, Colours In Conflict brings powerful, epic scale stories of creation and destruction to your table. Using a system of draws – be they from a bag of coloured stones or chits, or a deck of cards – Colours In Conflict builds on the Apocalypse World and Mystic Empyrean systems to deliver moment to moment drama. Agenda and Principles put the power in all of the players' hands to make the world move, with individual players taking ownership of various realms and dangers. Now go out and paint a new world.

What You'll Need

At least one other person beyond yourself. Three or four is ideal. Fewer is fine, and more gets... interesting. No Game Master or Master Of Ceremonies here, though. We're all just folk.
Something to draw from. Coloured beads, wood chips drawn on with markers, paint swatches. Six colours (see below), at least three of each colour. Alternately, use playing cards (9, 10, J, Q, K, A).
Writing and drawing supplies. If you're a really crazy person, painting supplies too. Pens, pencils, and paper will all do fine.
Time. At least two hours in a go preferably. Three to four is ideal.
A schedule that permits repeat games. Once a week, every other week, once a month, or something alike.

Element  Colours    Cards
 Fire         Red         9
 Air          Blue        10
Water      Green     Jack
Stone      Violet    Queen
Light       Yellow     King
Aether     Black       Ace

Dungeon World / Just got my hardback, and oh my how apropo!
« on: February 14, 2013, 08:43:23 PM »
So my package arrived with my very pretty DW hardback, backer supplements and t-shirt. Pack the book into my backpack to leaf through it on my break at work. Trip to work is cut unfortunately short due to vehicular collision.

With my bicycle.

I fly 10 feet and land shoulder first. After a quick check of all major joints, head and neck, as well as snagging info from the driver, I walk away from the accident no problem and get myself to the hospital. Alas, Canada. 7 hours later a doctor is able to give me a full physical run down after two look-overs by nurses, clean bill of health, nothing more significant than a bruise. Danger Defied, yo!

Anyway, on the bus home, I remember I have the DW hardback. Check to make sure it's fine (not a scratch), and then crack it open. Signed, "The sky god watches over you," and, "Take +1 forward vs Trucks." No kidding, on both counts. Thanks guys :D

Monsterhearts / Cold as Ice
« on: January 06, 2013, 04:16:26 PM »
Yeah, the Vampire move.

It looks like it largely just makes things kinda worse. Any time you shut someone down, you lose an extra string or gain an extra condition, along with the target getting the same. It just seems to make the Vampire's life harder to no significant benefit. I'm going to go ahead and assume I'm missing something, either mechanically or thematically. Someone care to lend a hand on this?

Cheers all ;)

Apocalypse World / Hacking in strings
« on: October 24, 2012, 09:21:26 PM »
So, I'm running a solo game, and since hx isn't really worth much without other PCs we've thought about hacking in Strings from Monsterhearts. Here's my first draft. We're gonna run with it for the moment, but thoughts are appreciated.

When you go aggro, on a 7-9 they also give you a string; manipulate/seduce on a 7-9 give them a string, on a 10+ take a string on them.

Otherwise, when you bear your heart to others, truly, give them one string, when someone puts themselves in a position below you, take one string on them.

At the end of the session, choose one person who you've learned something about, take a string on them. If you think they've learned something about you, give them a string.

Monsterhearts / Ghoul hungers for chaos... temptation?
« on: October 03, 2012, 03:28:58 PM »
Hey! So I'm new to MCing Monsterhearts, and unfortunately my first opportunity is in a 1-on-1 game. Luckily, my associate and I both embrace the high school, dysfunctional attitude that the game really thrives on, so it's easy for the most part. Anyway, my player is playing a ghoul ("sent" origin, which we're using to great effect) with a hunger for chaos. Considering we decided a small town would be the best for our purposes (and went with the real town of Vauxhall, Alberta, which is basically a high school, a diner, and the houses around them. Check it out), chaos was the hunger he thought best, at least for a short term thing that this might be.

Anyway, I gotta say I'm stumped on how to offer temptation on the chaos hunger front. I have so far offered a few otherwise unmarked "fun pills" and the subtle suggestion that they be used to make things funky at the dance, but it felt a little weak to me. Suggestions?

Dungeon World / Spanterhook Guild AP report
« on: November 22, 2011, 04:53:40 AM »
Hey all! This is my first AP, so please forgive if it's a little odd ;)

Awright, so, sat down to play Dungeon World with some friends of mine last night. Ended up running two modules in a rather zany fashion and they may be sold on it.

Character creation, the first -

Sitting down with Dustin and Stewart, I pitched the concept, and they pretty nearly pooped themselves. Leafing through the playbooks, The Fighter and The Thief immediately appealed to them. They picked their names, race, look, and alignment; Dustin made Gregor the filthy neutral Human, and Stewart picked Rook, the likewise filthy neutral Halfling. They figured they were a couple of filthy thieves, and ran with it. Next I offered to let them either take the stats provided or roll for 'em, 4d6, drop the lowest. They took the dice, and proceeded to roll absolute shite. Well, not that bad really, two +1s and a -1 each, in the end, with all of their stats being one or two points away from a bonus upgrade. Gregor's signature weapon was a big two handed battleaxe, sharp, heavy and ancient. Quickly kitting themselves out with starting packages otherwise, and then jotting down a few bonds. Apparently they had a con running where they ran some mercenaries out of town, used Goldenroot to convince the mayor that they were those mercs, and that he should give them all the jobs he could. Gregor's Str and Con were highlighted, and Rook's Dex and Wis.

The Spanterhook Guild

I figured that would be the easier one to run without any prep time, and it was a blast. Quickly brought on my best “run down mayor voice” and explained the situation. Guild stole a gem from the idol of the orcs, shit was going down if we didn't get it back to them. Doing some quick digging around town about the guild, and consulting their own knowledge (discern realities and spout lore), they discovered that the gem was worth a ton to the right folk, and that Gregor had a friend “not from around here” (complete with hand motions implying the friend was a demon) who would give, ahem, “favours” for the gem. As far as they were concerned, their con was paying off in full, and they decided to rob the thieves' guild and leave the city to burn. Yeah, “neutral”, gotcha. Oh well. They also discovered the back entrance, and learned about the trap there: a light triggered Goldenroot spray, leaving the victims hapless on the appearance of the door guard, Girard.

Approaching Dogleg Alley, the Dirty Duo waltzed in with the appropriate amount of light, “no dimmer than a torch,” after all, the trap was meant to catch sneaky counter-theives. Plugging the spray spout, and then quickly searching for the hidden entrance, which they found without difficulty beneath the false barrels. I told them it was a vent/crawlspace. Getting down on their hands and knees, Rook went in first followed not far behind by Gregor. Looking through the grate at the other end of the crawlspace, Rook could see two fellows playing a dice game in the foyer. Forgetting that he's a halfling, and thus carries a much smaller bow, Rook just figures there's no way he can draw in the vent, and tries to quietly pop off the grate. Defying Danger, he manages it without alerting attention. That said, Rook has the brilliant idea of pulling Gregor out of the vent and the two of them creeping together to murder the two hapless fellows. This time it's Gregor's turn to defy danger, taking -1 for the noise that plate armour tends to make. Snake Eyes. “Oi! 'oo are you?” and one of them is on the run to the door in the back to get “the boys”. Rook lets his arrow fly, and Gregor makes quick work of the other fellow with a very nasty Hack 'n Slash roll. Searching the corpses like good murderhobos, they find a pittance in coin, and a few knives and such, but they take them figuring that every penny counts, and then barge through the door that the running man didn't dash to, discovering the test chamber. Whirling blades, gas on the floor , two obviously trapped chests, and holes in the wall by the door with crossbow bolts in the other. This was entertaining. Disabling the blades, and then just smashing through the door hard soaking bolts, they fall into the Trophy room, not breaking anything valuable (damn that Bend Bars, Lift Gates. Oh well, inordinate amount of noise it is).

Stuffing whatever they can into their packs and strapping on a pair of solid gold swords, they just start making a makeshift barricade out of trophy cases and stuff they weren't able to strap to themselves, preparing for the feet stamping their way to the ruckus. Bursting through the door from the Footpads, a big bruiser and a pair of knife wielding bastages start rushing. Gregor stands in protection of his compatriot, taking a thrown blade to the chestplate (ting!), and proceeds to drop the ball entirely on a hack n slash, getting floored a bit by the musclehead. A soft hit on Rook's bowshots has him climbing on top of the barricade to get a good shot, and he takes a glancing blow from a knife, just enough to get through his armour. Gregor, fighting from the ground, hacks up into the bruiser's belly sending him flying. At this point, I forcast doom with a THUMP, THUMP, THUMP. Gurnak is coming...

The remaining knify fellow tries to make a run for it, but is laid low with an arrow to the back, just as Gurnak stomps in, club raising high. Rook now dashes up to the ogre, and a soft hit on his defy danger has him throwing Goldenroot dust in Gurnak's eyes just as the huge fist swings at him. Luckily, Gregor has two hold left, which he uses to hop up and dash in the way, taking the hit, and halving the damage. Another blow glancing off his armour. Of course, that makes him the next person Gurnak sees. Besties forever. Hilarity ensues. A really well argued parlay has the big guy crashing through the guild, leading our intrepid “heroes” to the boss lady with the eye, who we'd not long before established as being in a meeting with some potential buyers for the gem. BB/LL to smash the door open (and to pieces, loudly), and the confrontation begins. “Who are you? Never mind. Boys, kill them and I'll take half the gold for the Eye.” Both Gregor and Rook now dive in for some Hack n Slashing. Rook rolls first, missing completely. He takes a sword to the gut, and the blade, shock!, is poisoned! A quick saving throw later, and he's passed out. Gregor, enraged some, rolls boxcars, and decides the extra damage is worth it. Also he'd levelled not long before, grabbing merciless, so he's rolling 1d10+1d6+1d4, and proceeds to thoroughly wreck the poor bastard. Putting him in a spot, the fellow who just stabbed Rook shouts out, “Come any closer, and I kill him!” “Challenge Accepted!” Gregor Defies Danger, and then removes the fellow's head, and slaps his friend, waking him up.

Turning to the Guild President, Rook holds himself together and tries to Parlay, “Give us the Eye, or we kill you.” Dropping the ball on that roll (not a good day for Rook), she simply says that her men will be there any moment to kill them both, and she can make that not happen if, rather than take the gem and leave her with nothing, split the profit three ways and get the crap out of this town. Hearing Gurnak (now no longer affected) charging their way, they quickly agree. The huge ogre squeezes through the door, lets out a loud bellow, only to be stopped by the boss lady with a, “No no, they really are on official business for me.” A confused Gurnak rubs his head and sits down, and everyone involved laughs.

The sale we do behind closed doors (as we were running out of time at our current venue) and just jumped to their inevitable Carousing. They both missed the roll. This was glorious.

“You wake up in a strange city, with a weird tattoo that seems to run from one of you to the other... and that bitch seems to have run off with all of your money! What?!” From my two players, there were nothing but smiles and slow applause.

Anyway, needless to say, we're sold. When we got to my place, we ran another game with the same characters, plus a wizard since another player showed up, but that's a story for another time. I think we may have a new game of choice. Well done!

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