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Topics - Praion

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AW:Dark Age / An Actual Play Hangout On-Air
« on: March 10, 2014, 06:13:20 AM »
We played a game of AW:DA on saturday,
you can watch it here

AW:Dark Age / We ran our first playtest
« on: March 05, 2014, 06:14:35 PM »
*Apocalypse World: Dark Age thoughts and AP after first session*

This is our map (parts of it are german. sorry. You can ask me about it)

 We had Wigun the Dragon Herald who rules in an ancient keep in the old forest. His cult is basically "lets live to the fullest now because something terrible is going to happen". A lot of the old families and knights in the region still follow his cult and twice a year there is a big orgiastic party at the old stone-circle on the cliff.

There is Primo the Wicker Wise who is a wandering healer and magician and he has good connections to the mountain clans. His player described him as "basically Merlin". His shrine is a grotto in the mountains.

And we had Etsel the War Herald. He is tasked with watching the mountain clans and rules over a big estate with farmland. He has a big watchtower too that warns of attacks from the clans. His WArband are the chosen fighters from the important families of his estate.

We took a lot of time preparing the map, deciding where everyone is, what their oaths are and introducing characters (not really in this order). I added the extra towns that are not part of the players holding. There is Waves End a seaport trading town, OldTown (pronounced Ulton), the former highpoint of civilisation in the area but kind of in a decline after the empire of eagles fell (both are allied) and Equsten but that is not really defined yet.

Players made their fortune roll and WH and WW failed.
So we had Primo facing a hunger from the hunter connections he had but he had a champion from the mountain clans. A kind-hearted but deadly fighter woman named Grogar (i insisted she be female and reminded the WH also to include fighting women).
Wigun however had a bigger problem. He has to face infamy, outlawry, hunger and obligation but can rely on the safety of his keep.

Etzel got new recruits but faced a potential low muster.

Starting scenes were there to see what the daily lives are like before the problems. So we checked in with every character. Wigun had to learn that the food reserves are running low and that there is no tribute coming from his settlements in the big forest. He decided to visit Etzel to plan to rob Waves End. Primo also visited settlements in the northeast of the forest and heard that there are trolls that stop everyone from going out to hunt. He too went to check in with Etzel.
Etzel was eying his new recruits and i took extra time to describe all 5 of them. 2 women, 2 men and a boy. I gave them all characteristcs using the method described in the blogpost linked in the document. That took a lot of time but i hope it will pay off and i can use them in future sessions. These 6 and the other named 4 characters are the faces of the warband for now.

So everyone met later at Etzels manor and plans were made. We used *take stock* both to check on how to best deal with the new recruits and to formulate a plan of attack against WavesEnd. I am not sure if this is correct or not but it felt okay in game.

So they made a plan and then had a big feast the next day after the muster was complete. 1 day might be fast for a muster, there are no guidelines on how long that takes but i guess between 1 and 4 days usually, especially if the roll is made 10+.

So Etzel gave a speech, Wigun frenzyd them to give him offerings and then lose themselves in eating and drinking and Primo made a ritual to bless everyones armor and spirit.

Wigun prayed to his dragon goddess Maternia but rolled a 7-9 and his offer was declined. Maternia wants a bigger sacrifice and showed him visions of a burning city with him slaughtering people, asking "when?".

On the next day the warband set out to circle the forest from the east side to check in on the troll sightings in  the northeast. We ended the session with a cliffhanger as everyone was attacked by javelins, thrown from the woods.

Small spoiler for my players about how all the tags work together in my head:

There was double hunger so this is a big deal. There is hunger because of the trolls hunting game and people. There is more then one troll. Two settlements couldn'T live with that anymore and fleed their homestead, becoming bandits. That is who is attacking them right now.
I want to use obligation to "force" Wugin to travel to OldTown to bless a newborn there. I am not sure on what to do with infamy yet but it will probably hit him there.

*[Spoilers End]*

As a GM i wasn't quite sure on what to do really but decided to do a bit of following around and then the problem emerged in my head and i just followed the players deal with it. A lot of exposition is done anyway by the creation of the map i think. Otherwise i maybe answered questions a bit to easily, mostly giving them opportunites with a cost, where they would have needed to Take Stock beforehand. But it still felt good and gave me a chance to put my ideas into the world.
I also updated the maps with a few things that clicked into my head as they happened and informed everyone about it.

?+Vincent Baker asked for favourite, least favourite and surprising parts and i made a list (lets hope i can still read it).

I really liked holding and map creation because it gave me a world to work with and then the tags from the failed fortune rolls gave me the rest for the beginning of the game. I feel like "every problem is solved i don't know what to do" is a good point to move the season forward.

My players liked that the game was not PvP heavy as they thought it could be. Oaths help to enforce keeping your words and being helpful to each other, especially the prewritten once are about supporting each other. Also none of my players pushed for an antagonistic thing and neither did I. I felt like there was enough going on right there without me having to create extra conflict when we (and especially I) still need to find me feet with the game.

The XP rule was mentioned as liked because it gives you direct reward and forces you to do a lot of things. We had to discuss how getting XP for something works. Does getting your full muster is enough to "use" your *large* warband? We decided that the size bonus had to be used in battle to be XP worthy. Same thing for shield wall. On the other hand that means that you could get 3 XP from one battle situation/move. However i personally don't think there should be a singleton type rule for these kinds of things. Armor only gives XP when you get hit, harm only gives XP when you harm someone. Followers give XP when you go yourself and interact with them. If the GM brings them into a scene you would have to make a move at them for it to count (inspired by Saga mostly here).

The WW player liked the magic at a price and without a roll.

The general dark fantasy setting was liked.

Everyone liked that you already start out powerful. A mover in the world, not just a lowly peasant.

The Dragon Herald was extremely happy with his playbook.

Least fav.
In the beginning i was really confused on what to do as a GM but i think i found my grounding quite good. It felt really different to DW (no surprise really) because in DW i am much more aggressive and on the gas pedal, here i made more moves in response to players doing things since i also wanted to see them doing "their thing".
That doesn't mean i made no moves though.

The WH was a bit confused because he rolled a 7-9 on his fortunes but because of the combination he choose there was only 1 want available after he choose his bounty. The same thing would have been true on a 6- so that was a bit weird to him/us.

The WW player was rather tired and didn't insert himself enough but also i didn'T give him so many opportunities. We need to see more of his wandering wonderhealer type thing in the future.

People were unhappy they could only take 1 extra class move in the future. They want more! That is a good problem to have because of the scarcity element being present in the characters also.

How little PvP there was.

People were really surprised on how powerful the fortune roll was to create situations. I think this really forces you to go out and improve your holding through the fiction to get a chance at a better roll. It won't get better by itself.

People were surprised on how the Oaths made everyone work together instead of being in their own little kingdom doing their little things.

I think that is all i have for now. Any questions?

AW:Dark Age / Wolfspell
« on: March 03, 2014, 06:32:02 PM »
Wolfspell is only a word. I guess it is a Ceremony to turn you or someone into a Wolf?
Do they stay intelligent?

"Turn someone into a Wolf, your decision if they keep their wits meanwhile"

Is what i would use for now.

AW:Dark Age / XP and Troll Slayers
« on: March 03, 2014, 06:27:04 PM »

i found the Troll Slayer to have less checkboxes then other playbooks. And that is cool. Different progressions for different playbooks make total sense to me. However i feel like the wondrous weapons could use a checkbox.

Apocalypse World / New Work in Progress Playbook - The Handler
« on: December 29, 2012, 05:17:27 PM »

so this is the handler. It's a guy with a big hulking monster. A dragon, godzilla, a buelette, a siege mammoth

Something like that. It's also about beeing unable to perceive people as people.
It's a hot playbook.

Choose a basic kind of body (i think i can drop the instincts here)
* Lizard I instinct : to hoard
* Mammal I instinct : to mate
* Mutated mess I instinct: to shatter sanity
* humanoid I instinct : to get away
* insectoid I instinct : to mate

In battle it counts as a 2 harm small gang
Give it two additional abilities

* Fire breath 3 harm close, area, fire I impulse: To destroy
* Immens strengh and claws 3 harm hand, messy I instinct : to show power
* More than animal cunning I instinct : to corrupt
* It’s heavily armored 2 armor I instinct : to rest
* It’s gigantic +1 armor I instinct : to destroy whole buildings
* It has wings/can burrow or has other unique movement modes I instinct : to get away
* It can carnouflage itself I instinct : to scare
* Uses psychic powers to destroy your mind 2 harm ap quiet I instinct :
* Is grows strange diseases ridden fungus on his skin *mechanical stuff* I instinct : to infest
* It’s extremy sleek and agile I instinct : to get away
* Can carry a ton of stuff I instinct : to rest

How do you control it
* With whip, threats and constant oversight I instinct : to get revenge
* A psychic link I instinct : to follow the will of the maelstorm
* Bribes of special food I instinct : to eat
* Sheer luck, you have no idea why it listens to you, and only to you  I instinct : to protect
* You have a team that controls  I instinct : to mate

A lot of these moves are about seeing people not as people but as animals or make you a bit more animalistic. That's why you don't get read a person. I was thinking of removing manipulate and give the handler Pack Alpha with hot.

Maybe this playbook right now is a bit much about packs and gangs and groups and too less about the monster. I am not sure but i like it.
The advancement doesn't give you the option to get a gang right now... If he get's pack alpha with hot a gang would be cool. He then would have the possibility to pick manipulate up with a move.

A Handler get’s all the basic moves but read a person
He get’s "Monster Control", "A beast in battle" and "Pack Order"
(not sure if A beast in battle should be mandatory. It's based on the Juggernaut. Maybe it is okay to make this something you can pick up)

* When you control your monster roll+hot
On a hit it does as you want to but you still have to control it the whole time
On a 7-9 it also follows one of it’s instincts during the time and there is nothing you can do against it
On a miss it will follow all of it’s instincts with little control from you

* A beast in battle
When you are in battle with you monster you can go aggro and seize by force using hot

* Pack order
When you read a group of people roll+hot
* Who is the pack omega
* Who is the pack omega here
* How can I damage this pack
* Who in this pack is easiest to manipulate
* Who is fighting with the pack alpha for power

Primal Howl
When you howl like a wolf to scare your enemies roll+hot
On a 10+ they get away in fear
On a 7-9 choose one
* They freeze up for a moment
* One of them looses his cool, the others don’t fall for it

Animal Speak
You can talk to animals and can use moves on them like on humans

Homo homini lupus
Get the “read a person” move

When someone does something with his gang you can help or interfere with hot
(is this to weak)

If you have sex with somebody they get +1 hold. They can spend this hold to make your monster loose interest in them for a moment.
(Even in his special, the Handler is still about the monster, not the people)

- get +1 hot (+3)
- get +1 sharp (+2)
- get +1 hard (+2)  (i have no stat array so treat these as placeholders)
- take another Handler move
- take another Handler move
- take a move from another playbook
- take a move from another playbook
- remove one instinct from your monster
- get a breeding pit (workspace, detail) where you can work on animals?

No looks, Hx or stats right now.

Monsterhearts / So what does a 7-9 on Turning On mean?
« on: December 16, 2012, 01:55:51 PM »
"They give themself to you" <- what does that actually mean in play. Especially when used on a PC.

Apocalypse World / Loveletter advice please?
« on: December 06, 2012, 02:13:27 PM »

in my game the Savyhead had just decided to form a gang to work for Balls (local food shop owner) to rebel against the tyranny of the SWAT tribe lead by Jackabacka. Smith the brainer is still working for him (Jackabacka wants to kill Balls). The Angel Key and Killer the Gunlugger are still undecided.

Actually Killer has mist the last two sessions (session 2 and 3) so i will have to prepare a loveletter for him anyway. To get some time moving and slow down the action our next session will pick up 1 month later. This gives Oz the Savy enough time to put his gang together and work on the old factory building where they will be housed.

I want a bit of advice on the moves in the loveletters i will put out. Also, should i give my players the letters today/tomorrow or just when we start gaming? I love the feeling of printing them out and handing them to them but some of them will require a bit of thought beforehand so i am not sure if this will slow the game to much, what are your experiences?

This i have for the Savy right now:

yadadada yadaddada yaddaada GANG.
I will put the gang creation list on the letter and make him create his gang. I will also create a namelist of like 12 people that are in his gang.
Then there are a lot of quesions about them.
Who is your second in command?
Who do you trust the most and why isn't he in command?
Who hates you the most? Why?
There is someone you are really happy to have in your gang, who is it and why is he valuable to you?
There was also someone you didn't get, who is it and what else does s/he has to care for? Is she still loyale to the SWAT? Is it about his daughter?
Who here is actually working more for balls then for you?
With whom did you sleep? (he should get his sexmove for this right?)
Who here finds your pet creepy and want's to get rid of it?

You had a first advance against the SWAT 2 weeks ago, tell us about it and roll+hard.
On a 10+ choose 3, 7-9 choose 2. On a Miss it went downhill but choose 1
You made a show of force
You only got slightly injured (tell us who took a bullet)
You definitely reached your objective
You yourself came out okay


Not sure about this one. I think i should ask where her loyalties lie and why. She also went to 9:00 so she has to do something about it.

You really are in need of a doc and you are the only one here so get a mirror and get to work. (also roll+sharp)
On a 10+ everything fine. Go back to 3:00
On a 7-9 choose 1 (or 2?) On a miss choose 2 (or 3?)
* you used up ALL of your angel kit (or maybe just 2?)
* it wasn't as easy as you thought so just heal back to 6:00
* You had to open your brain to the psychic maelstorm about it and Shazza took control for a bit*

*Shazza is the Not-Skinner of the hardhold that Key failed to save last lession (she rolled A LOT of 3s that session) and that now lives in her head (5 on healing hands)

I want to do something with this possesion of her in the loveletter too.
This is a new beginning of session move she has to take:

When you try to get rid of Shazza roll +Weird
10+ everything is fine, for now
7-9 the MC holds 1
Miss: The MC holds 3
The MC can spend hold to have you act under fire if it goes against Shazza's wishes and plans

Is this okay?

She cared about a streetkid named Tao and said she want's him to work for her. Should there be a +hot move for this? I have actually no idea - manipulate doesn't seem right...


He made an enemy out of Barker. I think i want to resolve this, or give him the chance to do it with this letter. (Barker also has his Brainwave projector stashed away) 
You got confronted by Barker so roll +hard
10+ you killed that fucker
7-9 choose 1
* You gave him a good beating but he is still alive
* The SWAT is pissed at you
* His family (Martini and Goldie) knows you did it

You also had a chance to put some in-brain-puppet strings on 2 people. Tell us who it is and how you did it. Roll you move normaly and use your result for both cases. Tell us the command you gave them.


this is hard. I have to ask what he did for two months. I will give him 3 options i think.
* Raiding with the target gang (why? They are fuckers and they killed your father)
* Cruising arround with Dany, the driver from a nearby hardhold
* A secret mission for Jackabacka (tell us about it!)

Both Jackabacka and Balls then tried to get him to work for him so i will ask how he decideds (not choosing is an answer)
He is also a mercenary/hitman for hire so he will get a move for that.
You went out to kill someone for money. Tell us who it was (and who ordered you to kill him) and roll+hard
On a 10+ fuckers'dead and you get +1 barter
On a 7-9 choose 1
* You thought he is dead but he isn't
* You caused problem for your client and now he is pissed at you AND he didn't pay
* You got hefty injured, Set you'r harmclock to 9:00
On a miss - oh you poor poor soul... *evil grin*

This is what i have right now? Seems okay? I think the question stuff is okay but i need 1 or 2 more for the Savys gang. It could also use a bit more scarcity i think, water is actually hard to get...

Apocalypse World / My Savy's Pet
« on: November 27, 2012, 03:07:25 PM »

the Savyhead in the game we started two weeks ago used his "special gear" to get a Pet Bettle-Scorpion-Cockroach Mutant from the Skinner Playbook.

It's basically moving arround and could potentially be cover if he is fired on but what do i do with it? It's basically the size of a bigger dog but seems to be peacefull as long as the Savy supplies it with enough of his drugs.

What do i do now? It's Gear he has taken at char gen so i don't think it should be like a major threat. I have a threat about the mutant insects and stuff in the sever but the Beetle?

Now that i think about it, my Psychic Maelstorm is all about Family, Matriarchy and Pregnancies and Babies (basically the ALL-MOTHER), so maybe Bettle should lay eggs. Crazy mutant eggs.
It would keep the pet in play but make it a problem too and enforce the weird theme a bit.
Does this seem right? Any other ideas and best practises on how to deal with his crap? I am also threatening his drug farm with a weird red affliction so i don't know if i hit him too directly. I want to be a fan of his stuff but i HAVE to do something with this thing right?

Dungeon World / [AP/Help needed] Don't stumble into the summoning circle
« on: October 22, 2012, 09:29:06 AM »

after deciding that Thelons Rift was maybe not the best model for a DW one-shot i decided to do something improvised with Gnolls, an old observatory and a far realms rift.

Venturing into the old dwarfen observatory where the human fighter Gregor, a halfling thief named Maus and Rurgrosh, Cleric of Kratar the dwarfen god of secrets and knowledge (who's symbol is the Ibis...)

The party found themselves in front of some old bearcaves that hid the entrace to the observatory. They where send there to check on the dwarfs (also followers of Katar) because no one had heard from then in a year.

They entered the first room that was made up of a perfect dome, hammered from the stone and found a big pile of bones in the middle of it. Maus went and searched for traps and found a magical force field that was sure to activate some kind of trap. After throwing a stone against it to safely activate it the whole dome started to shrink magically, threatening to crush our lovely bands of adventures to rubble. Maus and Gregor made a quick run to the exit but Rurgosh wasn't fast enough. Alone in the room he casts guidance and a ghostly Ibis flys to a specific point in the globe. The dwarf makes a rush for it and passes through an ilusoary field directly into the next room. A huge cave filed with glowing stones (no one asked but the glow really wasn't natural), a small but fast river and lots of shrubery vegetation. They had no time to check the scenery as a pack of 3 hyeans appeared over the next small hill and charged them. A battle ensued in which Gregor was hit by an arrow, coming from *somewhere over there*. Maus saw this and went to sneak up on the archer, a gnoll scout. He was ready to jump and backstab him as another Gnoll, this one really thin and hungry looking wacked him over the head and tried to bite the shit out of him. Meanwhile the battle had thrown Rurgrosh into the River where he lost his Warhammer. Gregor went to charge the Gnoll archer put had to dive behind some cover while he was layed with covering fire. Maus used the moment of unbalance of the Gnoll and kicked him into the river and then jumped the archer, ending him in a quick 2 combo backstab. The hungry gnoll continued to fight the dwarf but a whack of the trusty dwarfen hammer ended him too but he fell on Rurgosh nearly chocking him as he fought for air.

A moment earlier while searching for his hammer Rurgosh saw a third gnoll scout, heading into a tunnel but did nothing about it.

The group made camp then. On Gregors (totally failed) watch a huge group of far realm monsters looking a bit like Will O Wisps entered 2 of the 3 tunnels that lead out of the big cave. The dwarf realised with a shock that these creatures are sworn enemies of the cult of Kratar since they tricked and killed people with to little knowledge. He decided to take care of them later and the group went into the tunnel that the Gnoll took. Soon in complete darkness the cleric tried to cast light (but failed) and the whole party was suddently emitting bright, slightly pink, light. Maus knew that this surely had to mean that they where chosen of Katar and had to go on a quest to please him before he would rid them of his "gift". As he is a sneaky kind of guy he really wasn't happy with being a walking torch ( i am really not sure if this went against "being a fan of the PCs" but it seemed so cool to me in this moment).

After a while they found themselves in a one corridor library with magic books of Katar-Priests (only readable by some). Maus of course went an got some books that looked valuable to him but failed to notice the far realm beasty sneaking up behind him.

A flesh colored blob from which from time to time a humanoid shape with 3 arms emerged was "sneaking" up on him. Throwing bookshelfs arroudn and turning them to colorfull goo with just a touch. The others saw it and came to help there halfling "friend". After Gregor choped on of the 3 arms (that seemed to move and reapaer wherever the creature wanted) with his signature sword the arm kept glued to the blade and continued to harras him. Growing extra palms and nails to hit him. He ran into the next room.
The battlecleric of course took his warhammer and tried to bash this things flobby featureless face in but a touch of fingers turned the ground into a pudding/quicksand like substance and the dwarf had to fight getting eaten by the ground. Meanwhile a giant eye had appeared on the side of the creature and as Maus stabbed it with his trusty rapier he had a vision of himself completly covered in his own blood as if every blood vessel he had had suddently exploded, he found his arm to be covered in tiny scratches afterwards.

In the next room, the main observatory all hell had brooken loose. Gregor was still fighting with the arm on his sword, a rift to far realm had oppened over the telescope and more of the glowing lightpoints where flying around but this time they had tentacles. In the other corner where a group of 3 gnolls arround a big fire. He charged them, hacking there leader nearly to death as the arm seemed to help him. Maybe it was just hungry for flesh, who knows.

In the library Maus tried to get the attention of the thing so that his dwarfen friend could escape and dodged his long, Mr. Fantastic like arms by jumping against a bookshelf where saw a big book with gold envelop and had to get it, even if that meant that he was buried under the falling shelf. This gave Rugosh enough time to get out of the pit and distract the thing himself so that the two of them could run away.

In the observatory Gregor was trying to kill the gnoll shaman now that was chanting arround a ritual circle with the big fire inside. A pair of demon hands rose out of the ground and with to much momentum from the strike the fighter stumbled INTO the circle himself and promptly had to defy danger of demonic possession. He missed. His vision turned red and his companions arrived just in time to see a glowing crown of fire appear over his head.

The demon instatly summoned a firesword to his hand and did lay waste to the gnolls arround him. Then Rugosh stepped in to help his friend. But neither his magic nor his fighting power was enough to help him. The arrows, fired by Mouse also didn't help and even after trying to stop the demon again with sheer force of will or muscle Gregor could not shake this demon off. He grew balrog like wings, destroyed the rest of the ceyling and took of into the night.

We ended the session there. I gave Gregor the chance for the last breath move and he rolled a 7-9. A devil appeared in his mind. Telling him that this possession tipped the cosmic balance and that this was not acceptable in devil hell. He offered him a trade. Possession of a helpfull devil instead of a rampaging balor. He accepted.

Gregor also had a level up and didn't decide right away what move he wanted to take. I was thinking of giving him the chance to take this move to reflect the deal with the devil.

A deal with the devil
From time to time the devil in your head will suggest that you do a certain thing. If you do it, take +1 forward in the pursuit of this thing and mark 1 exp when you accomplish it.

This could easily lead him into a compendium class (The Faust maybe) that offers moves that give you instead success for devilish control later. Something like this

Devil tongue
When you led the devil in your head to the talking for you you can treat your parley roll as a 10+ but the devil get's 1 hold on you. The GM can spend that hold to make you do things without your control. If you want to fight it you have to defy danger with cha.

And other things like it. Maybe getting a firesword or new knowledge... What are your thoughts about it? Has someone allready designed something like that?

I now need to create some fronts. I will post about this tomorrow and hope i can get your help.

I and the players had a lot of fun. I was actually planned as just a one shot before we pick up our Mouse Guard game again but now everyone wants to know what will happen to Gregor. Lot's of fun was had even though the players kept getting off-topic a lot.

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