Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves

  • 9 Replies
  • 5914 Views
My players always want to do multiples of the same moves, particularly when a combat breaks out. It doesn't seem quite right to tell them no on this but it might be kind of a time sink over time and doesn't feel quite right letting this happen.

Example: A charged situation occurs, and the three characters present ALL decide to read the situation. Well.. there's only so many questions and they end up asking the same ones.

I can see going two ways:
1) As long as the character succeeds, then can continue reading, but a failure lets me make a move and inevitably moves the story forward.
2) Only allow one character to read a particular situation from a single point of view unless the situation significantly changes.

Any advice?

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2010, 06:54:36 PM »
Let them, but not simultaneously. If you run out of meaningful answers, sucks to be the last guy who's risking a miss for nothing!

Also, remember that the PCs aren't always going to be working together. Work their different goals and needs to make sure they're at odds. Then, you really will have different things to tell them when they hit a read roll.

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2010, 07:05:57 PM »
It's definitely important to really colour the Read results with character specific stuff.

• where’s my best escape route / way in / way past?
- everybody has a different way out, in or past, right?  they're all in different places with their own skills for getting around

• which enemy is most vulnerable to me?
• which enemy is the biggest threat?
• what should I be on the lookout for?
- these ones should be obvious

• what’s my enemy’s true position?
- who is your true enemy?  do they ALL share the same enemy?  not always.

So, yeah, let 'em.  If they all want to roll at once there's no harm.  I wouldn't say okay to letting them roll every single second of a battle, but if that's all they want to do, make 'em act under fire, first.  you can't just stand there gawking without the risk of a bullet to the brain.

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2010, 08:00:32 PM »
"How do you read the sitch?" is a key question. You don't just, like, look around. How they answer will color how the read questions go. They won't be identical for everyone then.

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2010, 09:06:48 PM »
hah.  Best escape route?  Well, if you were to get them to focus on Pallor, you could walk out none the worse.
My real name is Timo

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2010, 10:04:31 PM »
I totally agree that there should be different answers to a lot of the same questions when asked by different people. And don't forget the fuckery.

"Jackabacka's the most vulnerable to you because he doesn't like to hit women. Thinks they're all fancy and shit, ha ha, am I right?"

"Well, for Brace, the biggest threat was Balls, because she's got the biggest gun and is kind of firing it around indiscriminately. But you, man, didn't you steal some chick Harridan was flirting with once? He's probably gonna single you at and try to make it hurt, yeah."

"Your best escape route, seriously, you gotta ask? You know they're here for Hope. Just don't stand between them and her, run a different way, they probably wouldn't even bother with you. Cultists, always obsessed with something, ya know?"

Plus, only people who ask the question get the bonus to the roll. Just because Brace has recognize that Balls is the biggest threat doesn't mean Hope's done so enough to capitalize on the matter. So there can be a reason for multiple people to ask repeat questions even if they're expecting the same answer, and you're not exactly robbing them if you just go "Yeah, same as before for the exact same reasons, ditch Hope and you're golden."

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2010, 12:49:30 PM »
If the circumstances were right, I'd be tempted to ask for one main roll with help from the others, with everyone who helped getting the bonus for following the advice.  Has a certain cinematic field, with a gang using subtle signals like meaningful glances or muttered comments before the fireworks begin.  But it presupposes a point person, and a united front.

If they're truly separate actors in the situation, then they might be each other's biggest threats and best ways out.   "Popeye, Bluto's always had a soft spot for Olive.  Your best way out is to grab her and stick a gun to her head.  Olive, it wouldn't take much to provoke Bluto into a jealous rage against Popeye, which would give you a chance to slip out."

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #7 on: August 25, 2010, 12:57:03 PM »
Resist the temptation!

If they've managed to set themselves up so that they're acting as a united front, let them enjoy it while it lasts, but don't mechanically reinforce it. Helping them form and sustain a "party" goes against 2/3s of the MC's agenda: "Play to find out what happens", and "Make the PCs' lives not boring". ("Do they hold it together, or give in to constant temptations to fuck each other over?")

*

DannyK

  • 157
Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #8 on: August 25, 2010, 03:22:21 PM »
Look on the bright side: 3 people rolling "read sitch" is three chances for a failed roll, and they can't all have Sharp at +2. 

In the fiction, you've got three guys rolling up on someone's turf and obviously casing the joint, eyeballing the locals and in general acting like they're about to rob a bank or start a war.  Make a move as hard as you'd like and see how they like it. 

Re: Need a bit of advice on characters repeating moves among themselves
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2010, 03:52:54 PM »
Look on the bright side: 3 people rolling "read sitch" is three chances for a failed roll, and they can't all have Sharp at +2.  

Haha yeah I wonder how many game sessions it will take for them to figure out the danger in that. Not like your typical game.

Also the earlier suggestion for helping sounds pretty good to me. The characters should be allowed to help each other when they feel so motivated. Certainly need to describe it in the fiction, though.