Separate moves with interactive effects

  • 2 Replies
Separate moves with interactive effects
« on: January 18, 2015, 02:01:37 PM »
So I'm thinking about a Star Trek flavored AW hack, and I'm watching some original series episodes to identify various moves.

In the episode "Journey To Babel", at the climax of the story, McCoy is doing heart surgery on the Vulcan ambassador while the Enterprise is under attack. Mechanically, that's two separate move sequences: McCoy is doing healing moves while Kirk is doing ship combat moves; both aspects are dramatic enough to call for moves and die rolls.

However, the jostling and power fluctuations on the ship are interfering with the surgery; the outcome of the doctor's moves are dependent on the success of the captain's moves.

I can think of a few ways to model this in the basic AW framework:

* McCoy rolls Healing, hits 7-9, MC says "the ship is getting shaken around pretty badly, and you're going to lose your patient if the raider ship isn't dealt with right quick; Kirk, what do you do?" This is unusual because the normal 7-9 shtick is to make the acting player make a choice, but here MC's shifting the focus and decision to another player -- not necessarily a bad thing.

* McCoy rolls Healing, misses with a 6, MC says "the ship's getting shaken around too badly, and you're going to lose your patient; Kirk, you can help him here by beating the raider ship." MC doesn't want to reduce the starship fight to a single Help roll; instead she improvises a special move that gives the effect of a Help roll if Kirk beats the raider without the ship taking more than 2 harm or something.

* McCoy rolls Healing, hits 10+, MC says "you'll be able to save him", cuts to Kirk, the space battle plays out, with narrative cuts back to sickbay as the ship gets shaken around. Works fine in vanilla AW rules, but the surgery lacks the suspense that the entire episode has been building towards.

In another context, I've considered using a "reverse countdown clock", requiring multiple successes from the players for different subtasks in order to reach a major goal, and I think that mechanic might be a good way to handle this kind of partially-dependent move series.

Anyone else have ideas on how to handle this?

Re: Separate moves with interactive effects
« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2015, 12:15:24 AM »
Can I ask, why would you have McCoy roll first? Why would his roll affect Kirk's? My instinct would be to have it the other way around: Kirk gets a bad roll on ship-to-ship combat, and the MC's move is to put McCoy in a tight spot, Act Under Fire and the fire is the ambassador might die!

Re: Separate moves with interactive effects
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2015, 11:47:39 PM »
Yeah, that actually does work better. As an MC, I'll have to keep in mind, whenever anyone is about to undertake a long and involved process, to cut to another character in a nearby situation that might be able to screw it up :)