Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Messages - DannyK

Pages: 1 ... 4 5 [6] 7 8 ... 11
Apocalypse World / Re: Touched by Death
« on: January 30, 2012, 01:52:44 PM »
My 2 cents: as an MC, I figure the moves do what they say on the tin, no prerequisites.

I agree that "in your care" should be read as active care: Tum Tum comes in a with a gut wound and you tried all night but couldn't save him, or the enemy scout gets hurt during capture, the character tries to patch up their wounds, and can only watch as the pissed-off Faceless beats them to death right there in the infirmary.  That kind of thing.  

So get to that +3 Weird, the character will have to spend a lot of time in the infirmary, orchestrate the deaths of infirmary patients, or rouse up enough trouble to guarantee a good supply of critically wounded people that are likely to die on the table.  And they'll have their fingerprints all over 3 or 4 people's deaths.  That's a lot of leeway for fuckery!

EDIT: Is the Angel in this game a PC or NPC?  I think that could set up some nice triangles either way.

Apocalypse World / Re: Wacky fun vs gritty realism
« on: January 20, 2012, 04:16:27 PM »
My favorite theory of humor is McGraw and Warrens Benign Violation Theory:
Laughter and amusement result from violations that are simultaneously seen as benign.

Here's a nice article about it.

The relevance to AW, I think, it that it's the MC's duty to make everything a threat -- so I think it's fair game to make the funny not-so-benign sometimes, like having Trout's followers kill people based on their interpretation of Trout's pop culture references.  It takes a careful hand to make this fair without leaving the players feeling like they're getting screwed for their cleverness. 

I think you can also prevent this kind of in-game humor from getting cheesy by keeping the humor all this side of the fourth wall; Trout is very funny to the players of the game, but he's a serious religious leader within the game world. 

In the world of humor writing, Terry Pratchett is very good of this, creating scenes and dialogue that are funny to the reader while being sad or grim to the characters involved.

Apocalypse World / Re: The Blisser Redux
« on: January 20, 2012, 04:03:34 PM »
Neat idea!  I want to play Bill Burroughs with a tommy gun..

Generally speaking, the problem with being a dope field isn't the dope; the dope is fine.  It's getting the dope. 

Therefore, I think the playbook needs a custom move along the lines of "When you try to score..." with exciting outcomes like others getting a hold over you, pissing people off, and it costing more than usual.  At the very least, "where do you get your dope" should be a major existential question for the Blisser.  (I'd call him a Juicer, but that risks angry emails from the Rifts people).

Maybe an Operator-style gig could be added to the playbook where the Blisser both takes and also deals drugs.  That hooks him/her into a whole dysfunctional web of postapocalyptic people.  If not a standard part of the playbook, it should be an advancement option. 

I think the effects of the drugs might be rolled into a single core Blisser move, and it seems a bit overpowered to me.  If you can get +2 to a single stat while you're high, and an additional +1 from your Blisser move, that's a huge bonus that can move around from session to session.  How about a stat-reshuffling trick, so the Blisser can increase Hard at the cost of Sharp, or Cool at the cost of Hot?  That way you get an interesting unbalanced character who's completely screwed if the kind of challenge he's facing changes suddenly. 

Finally, and I hope you're not offended at the input, Juiced seems to me to strike a wrong note.  Addicts aren't particularly known for being good shots or deadly combatants.  I think a bonus to Go Aggro might be more thematic:

Crazy Eyes: The character enjoys a +1 to the Go Aggro roll as their glazed eyes give no indication of whether they are bluffing. 

Apocalypse World / Re: No thief/sneaker Playbook ?
« on: January 19, 2012, 09:44:02 PM »
Not an expert, but my feeling on the matter after having participated in some discussions and tried to do some myself that didn't quite gel is that playbooks work best when built on a really strong archetype rather than a play style or role.  

If you go through the other playbooks and look at the mechanics, you can find a wide variety of different mechanics used for specific moves, and different arrangements of moves to use as inspirations.  

EDIT: As usual, forgot to address the heart of the question.  You'd want to really sharpen the concept of the playbook first.  Is this someone who thrives by stealing from other survivors, like a sneak thief?  Or a sort of quasi-professional burglar who steals for themselves and hires themselves out to others for jingle?  Or just a sneaky, stealthy person who approaches everything from the ninja angle, whether or not it involves stealing?  I think you really have to decide this kind of thing early on before you start making moves.  For one thing, it might help you decide things like "This guy is like a Gunlugger, but with stealth instead of guns". 

That said, potential moves might include an improved, stealthy version of Act Under Fire, a move for Casing the Joint that allows the character on a successful roll to accumulate holds to be used later during an operation, and a version of Go Aggro specialized for ambushes where the target is unaware of the attacker. 

Apocalypse World / Apocalypse Reloaded, or "Twenty Years After"
« on: January 06, 2012, 04:56:55 PM »
I ran an online game of AW called "A Town Called Gaga" that was pretty fun, set in postapocalyptic Arizona along the mystically preserved Route 66, AKA "The Old Road". 

The game ended in an awkward note, as online games are wont to do, but the players and I are up for another go at AW, and I thought it would be fun to take the same map and the same world, but start up with a new bunch of characters, somewhere between 1 and 5 years later.  It's an option for people to create a new, older version of their old characters, but I think most folks will try something new, which allows me to use the old characters as threats.  I still have the old Front worksheets somewhere, so I can figure out what happened with those threats and fast-forward a bit to present a new and interesting situation. 

One mistake I think I made with "Gaga" was that I disregarded some of the guidance in the rulebook and made a place that was too nice -- plenty of water from ancient wells, some breathing space between them and the psycho warlord on one side and the cannibal cultists on the other, an NPC hardholder who was crazy but relatively benign.  It made the characters tend to hole up and protect what they had, and even though I had threats pointed right at all of those good things, it took too long to build them up and the characters had the luxury of addressing them one at a time. 

So this time, I'm planning to make the setting that much more dysfunctional and dangerous, more haunted by shortages and scarcities.  I can do a lot of that from extrapolating from all the Fronts which raged out of control in the interim, and get input from the players as well.

Has anybody done this with AW? The title was inspired by Twenty Years After, one of my favorite Dumas novels, where the Four Musketeers reunite but things aren't quite the same.

BTW, if anyone is interested, we made a Wiki which is pretty detailed about the first session and setting, although I never updated it for the later game:

Apocalypse World / Re: Apocalypse Random
« on: January 06, 2012, 04:43:06 PM »
Interesting.  I think the playbooks are flavorful and hook-laden enough that they can act as oracles -- stare at a random character for a little while and he/she will come to life. 

Did you also generate the Fronts randomly?  That would be interesting

In the AW online game that I had to shut down, I was inspired by some of the Southern ladies I've known to have the hardhold, Gaga, have a designated eldest citizen, a daffy old lady whose grossly inaccurate memories of the Old Day were the best guess anybody had to how things were.  In practice, she functioned mostly as a social arbiter and etiquette guide -- the NPC hardholder liked to do things properly.  So, for example, when you had a formal council, you had to stage it like a dinner party, with good things to eat and people sitting boy-girl-boy-girl around the table... She had a remarkable ability to overlook all the nasty aspects of life in Gaga and act as if everything was pleasant and cheerful. She was a lot of fun.

Apocalypse World / Re: Custom Playbook: The Synthetic
« on: December 09, 2010, 05:07:36 PM »
Yeah, how is the sentience mechanic working for him?

Also, I was thinking about the source material and I was wondering about explicitly tying the Synthetic to a Threat in the game, maybe as an option.  For example, start off knowing only that your Synthetic character is built to collect information, and later discover that he was meant to be the scout for a coming robot invasion. 

Apocalypse World / Re: Urban Apocalypse Brainstorming
« on: December 09, 2010, 04:59:14 PM »
Come to think of it, there was a thread on Story Games a while ago where we made Gorillaz oracles for In A Wicked Age.  So clearly, Gorillaz have the Lumpley nature. 

Apocalypse World / Urban Apocalypse Brainstorming
« on: December 05, 2010, 09:15:47 PM »
So I've been listening to the Gorillaz a lot lately and really getting an interesting Apocalypse World vibe off of them. Especially one song, "Kids With Guns":

Kids with guns
Kids with guns
Taking over
They won't be long
They're mesmerised
Kids with guns
Kids with guns

Thinking about that and reading recently a Financial Times columnist talking about the war between cops and gangsters in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro who said that the government would never regain control of the city "until they did a better job than the criminals of providing essential services,"  it got me thinking. 

You actually don't need all the post-apocalyptic trappings of toxic mists and radiation zombies to make an Apocalypse World, it could totally be a huge city on the ragged edge of collapse anywhere in the developing world, Mumbai, Mexico City, Lagos, take your pick.  All the threats still work, pretty much, the Warlord from five blocks over, the Cult that's stealing babies, the Barrier that won't let you get to the river, the Brutes that rule your neighborhood. 

There'd probably have to be an outside force of some sort, the Cops or Federales or occupiers who keep the people from rising up and seizing the good things from the rich people. 

Apocalypse World / Swell Maps of Hell
« on: November 28, 2010, 11:36:42 PM »
I thought it might be nice to have a thread to share some of the maps we make for Apocalypse World.  I'm going to use the clickable thumbnail option with photobucket so I don't screw up the forum with big JPEGs.

I'll start with two maps I made for my "A Town Called Gaga" game:

This is the map of postapocalyptic Arizona.  I think it came out pretty well.

This is the butt-ugly map I made with Microsoft Paint to represent the town itself.

And this is the detoured map Madu made for an online game I'm in, posted here with his permission.

Again, click on the images to see full sized versions, post your own in this thread!

Apocalypse World / Re: I double-dog dare you.
« on: November 24, 2010, 01:30:50 PM »
Kanga Rat Murder Society is now my official Scott Pilgrim band name.  I like how the names kind of peter out when you get to "Mountainous New Continent Connected to North America." 

This is Jack Kirby, right?  True America genius. 

Apocalypse World / Re: Playbook: A Boy and His Dog (new)
« on: November 20, 2010, 12:57:59 AM »
I've thought of making it so the only way the Dog can die is by using Canine Intervention, otherwise the bastard just runs away for a while. 

Apocalypse World / Re: The seed of the text blooming (or not) in play
« on: November 20, 2010, 12:56:16 AM »
If you're really in the first couple sessions, I think the yeast is just starting to work, I don't think you have to push it too much. In my online game we're part way through the second "session" and we've got two characters independently plotting to take over from the NPC hardholder, somebody plotting to murder the NPC who's going to put another PC on the throne, PC's scanning each other's brains and letting their henchmen break each other's fingers. 

I think it'll get shooty soon enough if I keep the heat on.  I'm not sure how it works, but it's amazing how some characters have really been pushed away from each other - two them were explicitly conceived as partners working for the Maestro D', and they've liking each other less and less as the game goes on. It all goes back one of those questions I asked during chargen -- "what did you guys argue about last week?"  Very satisfying to wedge the PC's apart like that.

Apocalypse World / Re: Custom Playbook: The Synthetic
« on: November 18, 2010, 07:55:00 PM »
Well, maybe the "need a Savvyhead to keep you going" flaw could be one from a pick-list.  I almost feel like the Synthetic playbook should have you stat up your package the same way you'd create a Hocus Cult or a Holding --some good stuff, some bad stuff. 

I was thinking about the limited lifespan aspect -- this is something that historically hasn't worked really well in RPG's.  At RPG.Net it's called the "Juicer Problem" because the same thing comes up with Juicers -- they're supposed to trade elite combat skills for a short lifespan, but it doesn't play a role in the game. 

So maybe the Synthetic should start at the point when their countdown is almost done, so they have to fight mental and bodily decay every session -- like the fortunes roll, except if you miss, you take a debility.  I think that would keep the advancement more problematic -- you'd have to choose between spending XP on improvements and trying to fix the ravages of time. 

Finally: in the Hx session, I like the idea of another PC being the Master, but I don't think the text should assume it's a friendly relationship.  Maybe the Synthetic has been serving as a night watchman or executioner or manned a pump for the Hardholder PC, he's been a living tool.

Pages: 1 ... 4 5 [6] 7 8 ... 11