Drivers

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Drivers
« on: November 13, 2010, 04:12:58 AM »
Thinking about it I don't recall hearing too many stories of drivers in Apocalypse World. A player in my new game intends to play a driver and wondering if any players of drivers or MC's with them in you games have any tales to tell or tips on how to avoid them just becoming the guy to go to when you need to get from a to b.

how do you keep the driver involved when you're not ... driving?

I'm sure it's totally possible, just wondering how it's gone down in practice.

Re: Drivers
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2010, 09:31:33 AM »
When I had a driver in my game, I will admit, the PC pretty much had to work to shoehorn in the car's usefulness. But, y'know, it was something he could do. Like, driving from one part of the hardhold to another, rolling down the window to have a conversation with Newton? Meeting Dremmer's advancing gang in your car, leading the charge? Yeah.

If I were to do it again... the first thing I'd do is draw a map, and be like "Okay, why do people always come to YOU to drive them to THIS place, instead of some other punk with a vehicle?" "Why won't you drive to THAT place, regardless of how much jingle's being offered? How did the last person you explained that to take 'No' for an answer?" Etc.

And like the comment in the book about how the Angel works best if he's got some juicy motivations to work with other than "heal people when they need healing", the Driver works best if she's got some motivations other than "Drive people when they need driving". Ask her what she wants in life. And what stands in her way.

Re: Drivers
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2010, 12:27:30 PM »
In both of the games I've played with "Drivers," the characters started out as other character types and then bought moves from the Driver playbook.  Even then, unless the MC really brings conflict on the road -- chases, races, street combat, etc. -- the "Driver" player has to go seek that kind of thing out.  Really, it should be at least 50-50 there, right?  I mean, the MC's job is to make the characters' lives interesting and if you have a Driver and you're not having big chase scenes at least every other session... sounds like you're doing it wrong.

Re: Drivers
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2010, 06:52:51 PM »
A problem I have been having is that when MC'ing a game with a Driver is that the solution to a lot of conflicts becomes "drive away from there" which can invalidate a lot of setup from the MC and the play other characters have been doing. I know there's no such thing as status quo in Apocalypse World, but depending on the unity of your group you might end up with having to scrap a lot of the setting every session. Creating PC-NPC-PC triangles with non-mobile NPC's can be a pain in the ass too.

The solution I have come up with to these problems is unfortunately to limit the player characters, and the driver in particular:

Make the Driver Dependant on a key place or NPC for fuel.
Cut the character off: Stranded on an island, in a canyon or in an area surrounded by acid maelstrom winds.

I've given the characters a mission escorting a caravan, and therefor making some NPC's mobile and close to the characters. It will probably be a lot of fun, but I can't help thinking that the Driver is a bit inflexible to begin with.

Re: Drivers
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2010, 07:09:20 PM »
Thanks for the tips.

We have a hardholder in the group so we won't have the problem of just leaving the area, they're going to need to see to their hold. I like the thought of ensuring there's exciting chase/drive scenes. Will give the driver a real purpose and that should be fun and a little different feel than my previous campaign.

Really need to make sure the driver is weaved together in the other players stuff so he doesn't just become the transportation.

Re: Drivers
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2010, 06:32:44 AM »
I had a driver in the first game I ran and have another in my current game.

The guy in the first game was probably the nearest you'll get to a "standard" AW driver.  Guy owned a Hilux-style off-road vehicle.  Given that the other 3 characters at the start of the game included a Savvyhead and a Chopper, that sort of set the tone for the game.  Things took place over a fairly large area we ended up calling Saw County, with characters routinely travelling all over the place to get things done.  He quickly took Moonlighting and delivery Gigs to get himself stuck into the game and got in all kinds of scrapes.  It worked well enough.

The new game is a bit different.  The Driver in that game is called Big John Deere ("Big" to his friends).  His main vehicle is a massive John Deere tracked agricultural vehicle.  Like a cross between a tractor and a bulldozer.  He's hooked up with the other PCs (an Operator and Savvyhead) and they're competing in post apocalyptic tractor pulls. 

He started out with the Collector move to have a flatbed truck for taking his tractor and anything else from place to place to compete and a runaround car for getting places in a hurry.

Re: Drivers
« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2010, 10:42:21 AM »
I play Annette the Driver in my face-to-face game.  We also have Yodd the Chopper, Justin the Savvyhead who drives a semi with his workspace in the trailer.  And Trey the Gunlugger who rides in Bus with me when he's between bikes.  We play a caravan and we're always on the move (except for the 90% of the game where we're at a hold dealing with problems :-)).

It hasn't been a problem for me.  For one, the game is alot about vehicles -- fixing them, chasing people down, going into combat, driving through buildings, that kind of thing.  And besides, I can still do all the stuff with Annette that I could do with any character, it's just like I have one fewer move (until advancement started happening and everyone is out of sync anyway) when we're not driving -- but a pretty super one when we are.  Yeah, it just isn't a problem.