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Topics - Arvid

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Is Jesus a Chopper or a Hocus with a bike?

I run an event called "The Indie Room" at a Swedish rpg convention. The name is an old tradition, but I feel a bit uncomfortable with how it implies that the games we run are "indie games". I feel there is a lot of confusion and value-charged terminology in Swedish rpg discourse, and the notion of "indie games" only helps that.

So this year I'm providing little information plaques for all the games with labels and tags that signify design school OTHER than "indie games". A little game theory education and clarification, so to speak. For Apocalypse World, I've written, sloppy translation to english:

Game philosphy and rules similar to that of improv theatre's "yes and..."

Players with a narrativistic agenda aim to create a story by adressing human themes with their characters. A game is not narrativistic in itself, but can encourage a narrativistic agenda.

So, Poison'd and In a wicked age, I'm tagging with "IMPROV GAME", but what else? I'm considering tagging Poison'd as some kind of adult/hard improv game where you are encouraged to play hardball and put a lot of trust in other players. I actually feel this is an important point to make when assessing what kind of design/game philosophy this game moves within - But then, maybe Apocalypse World should have that tag as well.


Apocalypse World / Sunken Sydney, a Hatchet City-style scenario.
« on: April 05, 2011, 12:31:35 PM »

Yeah, we kind of stole the name from noofy. It was a project name that stuck, as is tradition. You cool, noofy?


Apocalypse World / Toning down the weird harshness of the world
« on: March 10, 2011, 01:28:10 PM »
One of my players suggested playing in a rather straight northern-american environment, think The Postman. I'm feeling sceptical. I feel that would lose the inherent brokenness of the world, the strangeness of it all - And I like that. I have a hard time imagining people named Rolfball and Dog Head and Mother Superior in a pine forest outpost.

What are your thoughts?

Apocalypse World / 15% of my job as MC is DJ:ing
« on: October 13, 2010, 03:34:56 PM »

I set up a sweet Foobar interface, and with my netbook on the playing table, I can discretely pick and choose songs for what's going on right now. I love it, and definitely consider DJ:ing a part of the MC package.

Anyone with me?

My players, does the music works feel like a big thing or a little thing to you? What percentage of the experience would you set it to?

Apocalypse World / Why Apocalypse World Rocks
« on: September 25, 2010, 06:07:30 AM »
I've made a blog.

Tomorrow, or maybe the day after that, I'll post part two, which is a more in-depth analysis of flow in Apocalypse World.

Rogue Trader: Apocalypse / Ship option moves?
« on: August 17, 2010, 07:04:02 AM »
From the custom ship moves thread:

Cartograph Department: To get anything useful out of the ship's cartography department, roll Charming. On a 10+, they'll send you an accurate map. On a 7-9, they'll send you a map, but choose 1:
  • It's inaccurate.
  • They demand a shipment of luxuries.

On a 12+, they'll actually tell you where they are located on the ship.

Hey, is this a unique move for your playgroup, or have you considered adding moves to ship options? Like, if you want a big chapel in your ship, maybe that gives you a custom move to protect against insanity, or gain inspiration, or whatever.

Or if you have an ancient powerful engine, there is a move for going there. On a miss, you get lost, on a hit you find what you were looking for, and maybe something new and interesting. That would be awesome!

Apocalypse World / Give me some good folk songs for the road
« on: August 14, 2010, 07:11:33 PM »
PC's going to hit the road with hope in their hearts and purpose in their stride. Once I heard Ain't No Grave I knew I was going to have to play it.

Wayfaring Stranger too, probably. In some version.

What else is good in american folk? Instrumental, a plus. My usual mood music consists of Hex: Or Printing in the Infernal Method and The Bees Made Honey in the Lion's Skull by Earth, and the soundtrack from Dead Man, now I'm looking to add a little more hope and community to that. You know, folk.

Apocalypse World / AP: Welcome, New Jerk
« on: August 13, 2010, 04:37:33 PM »
A blasted postapocalyptic California wasteland, with it's biggest hardhold New Jerk in it's center. New Jerk is a an old military fortress, surrounded by the settlements of 300-something souls. Roads are crap, gas is extremely rare, everybody rides horses. "Welcome, New Jerk" is what the welcome sign says.

Daimyo, a 20-something hardholder, who rules the unruly pack of savage warriors inside the fortress with an iron hand. Seem to have some fascination for militaria and culture. Always wears a gas mask out in the hardhold to protect himself from the filthy citizens. Hates and fears the maelstrom.

Nero, a 20-something operator working security and raiding for Daimyo. A rather kind man in a jacket suit (probably the only guy wearing a jacket post apoc.) who seeks to learn what the maelstrom is all about.

Canaveral, battlebabe in her early 20:s. Rode into town and hung around. Got a reputation for being the knight of New Jerk. Carries an ornate gun and spear. She and Daimyo have heard each others names in their dreams, so they've decided to hang around and find out what that is about.

Apocalypse World / Facebook pages
« on: August 13, 2010, 04:04:42 AM »
Hey Vincent, you don't mind that I set up a page for Apocalypse World, using one of your artworks, do you?
It's here.

There's nothing there really, not yet at least, it's just so I can put it in the list of things I like. I put up the page for Dogs in the Vineyard as well. If you wanna put up an AW page and make it official, that'd be even cooler. :)

Apocalypse World / Battle rolls - Am I doing it right?
« on: August 07, 2010, 07:02:42 AM »
Second session in, and the players have razed a rival hardhold. Felt a little uncertain as I barfed forth apocalyptic battlefield violence upon them and called for rolls. If anyone would like to clear these situations up with me, it would be appreciated. Here's how I interpreted the rules in the end:

- Sneaking into the hardhold, you roll Acting under fire. (Getting spotted is the fire)
- If someone spots you and fires upon you with a 2-harm weapon, they inflict 2-harm on you by default, automatically.
-- Fighting them, you roll Sieze by force (And can then choose to suffer little harm, 1-harm instead of 2-harm)
-- Taking cover or running away, do you roll Acting under fire or Sieze by force (Siezing a cover or an escape)? And, if successful, do you avoid harm entirely or what?
- To stat up gangs, I basically give them a harm rating and an armor rating based on their equipment, just as I would with an individual, plus assigning gang size... Right?


Apocalypse World / Fronts - Am I doing it right?
« on: August 04, 2010, 05:18:06 PM »
Hey guys!

I've run my first session of AW. We have a hardholder, a battlebabe and an operator. They are all resident in New Jerk, a sprawling hub of decadence (300 inhabitants, want: hunger, disease, reprisals, savagery). The hardholder is a commander of an old fort full of savage warriors, and the hardhold just kind of grew  around that fort and the protection it offers. The operator and battlebabe are pretty much loyal to him.

I have some fronts I'm considering, but I'm not totally sure about them. Take a look:

Splitting New Jerk (Decay? Ambition? Ignorance?)
Threats: Two Moon's cult of peace and water, and the savage dog worshippers.
Dark future: People pledges loyalty to either of both groups, and tension rises until an all out war breaks out in New Jerk. Two Moon's cult fortifies in the only water supply, the dog worshippers goes amok and brings ruin to the hardhold.

Postapoc California power balance (Ambition)
Threats: A Warlord, several smaller hardholds.
Agenda: Unite the smaller hardholds and throw off the tyrrany of New Jerk, who raids/taxes the area. The influx of barter and commerce ends, and people are killed in skirmishes.

Famine (Hunger)
Threats: Raiders, drought, collapsed trade routs.
Dark future: The swelling population of New Jerk starves.

My questions:
1) You can't really beat Famine. Hunger it will always be a Want as long as New Jerk is so big. Is that a problem?
Perhaps I should rewrite it into "The famine of year X", have it be a beatable challenge.

2) When a fronts doesn't really threaten anything except the characters power and influence, is that a problem?

3) I don't really have any good NPCs to make clear stakes for these fronts. Does that mean I should stay in "first session-mode," exploring the characters, introducing NPCs? We didn't have as much time for that as I'd liked, maybe. I did like, zero prep. Just a little imagery daydreaming.

4) The regional front is basically a PCs vs Warlord thingie. Is that a problem? Can entire hardholds be threats?
Also, I'd like to know what it takes for an hardholder to improve on his hardhold. Does the hardholder have to buy bustling market if his hardhold is to have one, or can that happen through play? Or are you required to both reach it in play and solidify it with an improvement?


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