Overlapping cult and gang?

  • 3 Replies
Overlapping cult and gang?
« on: May 16, 2012, 12:48:03 AM »

So this thing happened in our new-ish AW game where something interesting is happening between my Hocus (Vision) and another player's Touchstone (Clarity). We started out as respectful comrades, sharing optimism for the future. So naturally, when Clarity got into some trouble, Vision and her cult gave her shelter and protection. Clarity and Vision are somewhat at odds in how to approach the trouble (violent revolution vs. exhaust all other possibilities first) and Clarity has had a chance to interact with Vision's cult a bit, getting some of them to lean towards her way of thinking.

At the end of this past session, Clarity earned a gang. Story-wise, it kind of makes sense that some of her gang would also be members of Vision's cult. But mechanically? It seems a little fucked up. Like, my Hocus has enough problems with avoiding getting the shit beat out of her by her own cult, so to add to that loyalty issues - ugh (since I can all but guarantee we're not always going to see eye to eye). But...it could make for some interesting fiction.

So I'm wondering...is it mechanically kosher to have gang/cult overlap (or even gang/gang if her recruits come from the Hardholder)? Has this come up for anyone else?


Re: Overlapping cult and gang?
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2012, 08:58:48 AM »
Not only is GANG-CULT mechanically sound, it's also very interesting. Time to set up PC-NPC-PC triangles!

GANG-GANG is a bit harder to justify.  But, I guess if you're ok with that, why not?
« Last Edit: May 16, 2012, 09:04:16 AM by JoeNobody »



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Re: Overlapping cult and gang?
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2012, 11:06:45 AM »
There's two problems here. One is that the other player may not exactly like you taking their stuff without them having a say (like, they'd probably be fine if you convinced their dudes to follow you by a big speech, but would be less okay if you just took their dudes by an advancement option).

The other problem is that "co-ownership" of NPCs in AW is definitelly going to be weird. Some NPCs "belong" to you the same way something you can do by virtue of a more personal move, and yet they kind of don't, 'cause they're people. This interplay is all fine and good when there's only the MC and the player sharing control over the group... But I suspect as soon as there are multiple mechanical claims on a group, that'd you'd suddenly have to start caring very deeply about which player gets to roll first, which can get pretty frustrating.

Still, if you're interested in a story about shifting loyalties at all, I'm pretty sure AW can handle it, just not as well as straight-up ownership or moves.

I personally would like to see you play through it anyway, for science if not anything else. :)

So basically... Several ways you can handle this. Two obvious ones are just playing with the rules as they are and gritting your teeth through the hard parts, or just getting the gang from a non-troublesome source (fast-forward time if needed).

You can also repurpose a bunch of other AW rules to make dealing with this easier. If you go that route, more than one way to deal with it... I can think of two, either complimentary or independent:

1) Custom move with hold! Get hold either on a per-session basis (On session start, roll +x...), or a per action basis (When you sway your gang to your favour, roll +x). Then, during that session, you can cash in on that hold to do something that the other co-owner would disagree with.

2) Player-personalized front! The gang becomes a front that's about losing loyalty to the cult (or vice versa), and ticks down as usual unless action is taken, and becomes fully one player's or the other's once the front gets resolved.

And so on.

Re: Overlapping cult and gang?
« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2012, 09:47:52 PM »
Thanks very much for the thoughtful and helpful replies!

I think there will be just a touch of overlap at this point - enough to make it interesting. Have to wait a couple more days to try it out, though. :)

Thanks again,