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Messages - Maleficum

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In the original question and situation described I'd have them roll Act under fire.

On a 10+ Sure, no problem.

On a 7-9 maybe an ugly choice? "Sure, you can stop them, but you'll have to harm them." or a worse outcome: "You do it, no problem, but while you strugge they bite your hand, take 1-harm and roll the When you take harm move.

On a miss: They get inside and start thrashing on the perceived thief, he/she is on their back arms raised in a defencive position and look terrifyed. They're clearly taking harm. What do you do?

Apocalypse World / Re: Playbook advances - tiered plusses?
« on: February 24, 2018, 12:13:20 PM »
Thanks! This helped much! I'm meeting the MC a bit before next session and I am pretty sure he will enjoy the lateral (or maybe even regressive?) advancement. One problem we've had is that the end game approaches rapidly, with the feeling that the characters have much more to offer.

This time we've not thundered through to get XP, and it helps.

Apocalypse World / Playbook advances - tiered plusses?
« on: February 20, 2018, 01:38:25 PM »
So my Hardholder changed playbook at the dusk of last session. We've never really had many Playbook-changes, but a thing that struck me now is that I have a couple of questions, especially since part of the reason we don't experience many playbook shifts is that come to many STATS+2 the endgame fast approaches and the MC get bored.  ::) ;)

So: I know you lose everything intrinsically to you old life and keep everything intrinsically connected to your self, but I was wondering if I took +1 WEIRD as a Hardholder, do I need to take a +1 advance from a Playbook that has two +1 WEIRD?

I know I probably needn't, and that we players can and should take responsibility for fiction and meta, but has anyone else thought about having a finite end of advances? ...maybe not endless STAT-change moves as well?

Also: I was wondering if I should ask my MC what he thinks about changing base statline to one from the Battlebabe. It would fit the character who's secret when Hx reset was that he hated being The Hardholder, having responsibility and dependents and always doing the hard choices.


In your experience, what's the best timing and approach for "making it official"? Do you give the player the appropriate moves, wait for them to be paid with an Improvement, bank it in advance, or what? To what extent do you try to make the fiction and the moves coincide, if at all?

I can imagine a few different ways this could go, and I'd love to hear a) some examples of how it's gone in your games, and b) how you think it works best or should work.

A)  Well, the reverse was true for my Hardholder just now. As the Gunlugger and Skinner siblings wanted Vega and his daughter to come with them to Geiger Town (which from were they escaped a year before), the three f them convinced Vega to drop, and with the XP from not killing the "pet" (a freakin' click beast) and abondining the attempt to save his Hold(sfolk) he emerged from scavenging a basement ruin as a Battlebabe.

In another game I MC'ed the Hocus, who had abonded the cult as everyone abondened the hold (NPC Hardholder) and come back to see the cult in horrible practices, actually lost 4-5 XP in the firefight as she could not decide if she'd take over the hold (advance: change playbook to Hardholder) or to do the route (advance: chance playbook to Angel). It wasn't decided until as a "worse outcome" the child she was bearing (whom the player really wasn't that involved with) was lost (MC Move: "You feel blood running inside your thighs") and suddenly the player wanted to keep the child and advanced to Angel). As she raised herself to take in the battlefield I asked what Ember thought of the people running about: "I have nothing but contempt for these sheep, who will follow any lead but their own. I still have sympathy for humans as induviduals, though."

B)   I believe there's no real true way to do it, but I believe in making players (including myself) pay for upgrades. We once had a Hold were the Angel's Hardholder wife ended in a coma and noone really took command, but people would refer to the battle-hardened medic, and it was clear he was not able to do things as easy as if he'd have the Hardholder playbook.

I'm really a fan of having players put their XP were their mouth is, and there should be a fictional difference between a Hardholder hard+2 and a gunlugger hard+2 (or even hard+3), as Vincent talked about in the X/Y-axis of playbooks. (Some have lot's of personal power, others lot's of fictional positioning - and the Battlebabe flips the bird to establish the z-axis.)

Apocalypse World / Re: 2nd edition trifolds
« on: June 06, 2017, 06:07:50 PM »
Thanks! I've heard more moans than mine around the table for the trifolds, (even though I had a tendency to print them wrong). :P

Dungeon World / Re: Allowing Healing at 0 HP?
« on: March 29, 2017, 03:15:50 PM »
Dungeon World don't have rounds. I have don't have them roll directly, but allow for the players to tell me the last time [The Character] was badly hurt, or who saved them or who they wished they'd kissed if they took their last breath now. This allows characters to help, if fictionally positioned to do so, or at least react to their friend's last moments, at least emotionally.

Dungeon World / Re: Why Should I?
« on: March 29, 2017, 03:11:31 PM »
For me Dungeon World is the closest I've experienced to the "when everything was new and magical" (besides Burning Wheel).

Apocalypse World / Re: Bringing in a new character half way though ?
« on: February 06, 2017, 07:43:45 PM »
I've experienced it, as my character The Brainer was killed by The Hardholder, (after The Gunlugger had tried and failed twice, but then did so ent passant, but saved her...). The Hardholder had protected her from both the Gunlugger and the Towers gangmembers, and it took us all by surprise.

In addition we had a Battlebabe, and as the Gunlugger also was the medic, the Angel was an unattractive playbook, so I took the Chopper.

The Procedure:

We established that my character and her band of waterjet bike-riding young guns had regularly been to the Tower and it was her favorite place. She also was attracted to the battlebabe and we agreed it was partly because she had stood up to me, whole gang and all (first Hx) and I believe the Hardholder had one as well, and then we read our on your turns and got off. I was included in most of the first scenes, (I think we even shot someone in the Hardholder's Office), and the Battlebabe postphoned her Change to another playbook-move to accomodate a new character.

In short: Do introduction and Hx like in session I and give room to the new character. The new character also knows people and places, or will soon. (Let two weeks pass and he/she/they will surely have met a large part of the 72 inhabitantes of whatever ramshackle place they live. If the role is completely new, just skip two months ahead in the story. Or two weeks. Hell, a new lone face with important skillsets would be known in two days, right?

The feelings:

At first it was a little underwhelming, as the others had their STATS+3, extra fancy moves, but I took the +1 HARD advancement really early, and +1 COOL, so I would regulary succeed in my base moves (I wouldn't have done this otherwise). As the Chopper is a bit distant and aggressive she didn't immidiately make any friends, besides the Hardholder who bonded with my violent and occam's razor-nature, but still had to treat her like a threath.

After two sessions I was right in the tick of it, the Battlebabe changed her view from "Wow, Diamond is really crazy" to "you guys suck, Diamond is the only one keeping it together here"

I'd like to add that everyone was really cool also in involving my dead character. The Hardholder would explain every bad luck with "This is Pallors doing!" and when there was some weird stuff they would say "She would have known what to do" (every character had -1 weird).

Things should work well, but take care to include the new character - and let the player "feel her out". As a new character, it might be better to have clear, easy-to-understand motivations, but that has more to do with group and it's playstyle.

One thing I should mention is that as the end game approaches it can be sad to never get the trancendent roles (for expanded basic moves), or to feel that the character has much more play in it while the others tear the locale apart in a local harmageddon...

Apocalypse World / Re: 1 question
« on: January 20, 2017, 01:41:31 PM »
PC-NPC-PC triangles.

Sure, you're eager to know or your friend's oftener right or whatever, but would you really go to them while your ex is on their arm? And I agree that the gunlugger could help you by providing covering fire, but would you really ask or count on it if you knew they were pissed about what you said/did to Isle?

And you might seem at ease around the table, but when you live in Apocalypse World and are one of it's paragons of coolness, sharpness, hotness and crazy brilliance while being hard as fuck you do stuff when you do it, in accordance to the rythm of the conversation/lay of things - because at any time that +5 forward will be spent on a pissed off-boyfriend heading your way! The MC are really not doing their job if they let you accumulate and sum up bonuses while making everyone's lives boring.

Yeah, you've got a +3 cool and hard in your statline, but your friends around the rpg-table said they wanted you to interact with people in the setting and reflected it in their hightlights.

... and speakiing of highlights. The game will end very soon when the GM recognize that the players' regulary roll with a 4% chance of failure. Any game will need a bit of uncertainty, Apocalypse World just as much.

A rare time you'll actually bang the Gunlugger just as you go tell the Warlord to sod off and leave everyone alone, as the Savvyhead believed was the best option, while the News and the Skinner both inspire you or something, while the Brainer helps... hopefull that's cool as the nordic hell and whatever will rize in said Warlord's dust be not boring!

Apocalypse World / Re: Battlebabe Sex Move
« on: January 20, 2017, 01:19:27 PM »
I'll just add to the "I enjoy the sex" (i.e. sex scenes), and I recognize that that the Playbook special is to give sex a "this happened"-feel. I for one do not care about drawing the curtains*, but a friend of mine said that the rules made him more enthused about sex in roleplaying games - and he actually designed his character for hooking up.

The Battlebabe is awesome, and is so because of the special. In my last campaign I played a driver with a battlebabe friend - and while we were just that friends who hung together because we both got what we needed from eachother; (the battlebabe couldn't trust my driver, and I got someone to get me out of heat), we all knew that any potential hook ups would actually NOT fuck up our relationship/friendship, as it did with everyone else.

Hell, aren't half of the specials at least only one-sided in upsides? I mean, the Battlebabe is so cool s/he can fuck the Brainer and not worry about mental and emotional health.

*)  We describe violence, why should we not describe sex?

Apocalypse World / Re: 1 question
« on: January 19, 2017, 04:35:09 PM »
You still only get help from the best rolled help, right? (But now you can roll help AFTER the roll to be helped has been made.)

Apocalypse World / Re: 2nd session woes - an observation
« on: January 15, 2017, 07:40:25 AM »
Thanks, Ebok. This was actually a general question, since there's two of us (we've both played a lot together, but also with other groups) who've noticed that the 2nd session usually don't sing that well.

(excuse the idiom, when something sings it's describes when everything falls into place, engages/entertains and has exxcellent flow)

In this case the player's really said it wasn't that bad, but I (as MC) did bad calls and I think especially I was to timid in presenting the threats. (I've now gathered that 3 o'clock should be something serious (someone get's shot/the generator breaks down/someone get's ill/bugs appear on the crops/etc, ...and not simple an announce future badness, that should be for telling there's a threath.

Quote from: Ebok

I dont do second session prep. first session is the same as second session for me. I just keep pushing, we keep learning, and together we normally find out whats going on.

This is quite possible really good advice, and I will need to test it out, as in there's often something limiting the first session. (Now we had telephone-interupptions, but it could be ... stressed from work (and late), communal dinner dragging out, the old "it's been ages since we've met: how are everyone?" or just "there's too many choices", "what playbooks should we take?", "do you remember when?" ...

I do recall on campaign where uncertain fronts made for uncertain MCing on my part, but... extending the first session and not caring whether there's threats that should be announced could be great solution.

Thanks everyone, I find it interesting too contemplate rpg-craft. Improvement in RPGs often means improvement in other fields in life as well.

Apocalypse World / Re: 2nd session woes - an observation
« on: January 13, 2017, 10:09:01 AM »
Thank you, ZombieAcePilot, this is very insightfull (and helpful).

Apocalypse World / Re: Chopper Bikes
« on: January 13, 2017, 08:08:58 AM »
Tight will let you describe you turning around corners and rocks and barbed cactii with wild abandon. Should help in chases, and in situation were tight manouvering is vital.

An aggressive bike seems like it's got great acceleration, can be loud (help with Go Aggro?) and I would even let someone Go aggro (or maybe even Do battle with it.)

I let my hog roar visciously and lift the front wheel up from the ground. Is the guard really going to deny me entrance?

Roll+HARD to Go aggro, if they suck it up it will hurt as 400 ponds trounce you from above and the back wheel spins on top-of you. At the very least they should run.

Helping with description is a huge thing - and it's also helpful for the MC, maybe especially for finding threath moves and the like. Descriptions help the MC make your life not boring.

Your Chopper just robbed a hardholder. They and a few from the gang run towards their bikes while under fire. A 7-9 result could result in everyone taking damage, but that might be boring (it often get's repetetive) so while the bullets are blazin' the MC says: "As you get to the bikes, you here Kickback taking a bullet. Maybe the armor stopped, maybe not. As you see Pinky and Skull pick him up you kickstart your hog and ear the familiar hk-k-k-kk-k-k-k-k-k-kh and you recognize the sparkplug and/or fuel-distribution issue you've been hoping to understand... what do you do?"

Apocalypse World / 2nd session woes - an observation
« on: January 13, 2017, 05:20:58 AM »
So, we've had quite a few decent Apocalypsw World campaigns, and quite often the first sessions sings beautifully, but the 2nd session is often really bad. It's turtling in every sense of the world, from both MC and often the Players; new NPCs are stale and the characters often get to roll less. I myself fumble alot when MCing the 2nd session.

Is this something common to Apocalypse World? (..or even the -PbtA  RPG engine?)

Some thoughts:

Is the reason a bad grasping of the threath clocks? I think I often try to involve them after making them between the first and second session, but in the first session things flow because I just make a judgement en passant and I think cooler things happen. Maybe I'm shoehorning in my threaths?

Also I think my threath clocks are wrong*. I think I just announce future badness in the 3 o'clock-segment. Something should happen. Something immideate and threathening.

Is is just that Apocalypse World demands a lot from it's MCs? Incorporating into the fiction, learning about the characters, springing forward with named, human NPCs, thinking off screen (mechanical and fictional), caring about versimilitude, being a fan of the characters and being a fan of the players' enjoyment**, saying relevant things, finding perfect break spots (while the players really enjoy the flow), understanding the Psychic Maelstrom and being sure everyone gets a say while validating different playbooks input, understanding just that playbook that doesn't tickle your fancy, ... etc, etc

Do anyone have similar observations, or thought on our observation (and musings)?

*Maybe threath clocks could be a topic for another thread
** another thing I've been thinking of. Different players seem to have different wishes (/preferred enjoyment)

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