[The Ward] Medical drama powered by the Apocalypse

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Chroma

  • 259
[The Ward] Medical drama powered by the Apocalypse
« on: April 05, 2016, 02:08:39 PM »
Life, death, and walking the fine line between, while low on coffee.

Medical drama role-playing with the player characters on the front lines; juggling their patients' lives, their social lives, and their own sanity as the pressure mounts.


Hey all! I love Apocalypse World and all its mutated children so I've been taking a stab at putting together my own hack. It's called The Ward and it's a medical drama (or comedy!) story game; I've been working on it in private for several months, have run some great playtest sessions, but I wanted to get some more eyes on it.

I've created a Google+ group for people interested in playtesting and posting feedback, so if this piques your interest, drop me a note and I'll send you an invite!
"If you get shot enough times, your body will actually build up immunity to bullets. The real trick lies in surviving the first dozen or so..."
-- Pope Nag, RPG.net - UNKNOWN ARMIES

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Chroma

  • 259
Re: [The Ward] Medical drama powered by the Apocalypse
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2016, 02:12:21 PM »
Some things to start discussion/generate interest:

Stats

Brains – intelligence, training, learning
Guts – physical and mental fortitude, willpower
Heart – empathy, emotional strength, humanity
Nerve – audacity, chutzpah, confidence
Cxn – your connection, good or bad, with the other players’ characters

Basic Moves

When you try to Act Professionally, or maintain your composure, in a difficult or dangerous situation roll+guts:
On a 10+: You keep it together.
On a 7–9: You slip, crack, or hesitate: the MC can offer you a worse outcome, a hard bargain, or an unforeseen side effect.
On a 6-: Miss: Things get complicated

When you interact directly with someone in need or difficulty, roll+heart:
If you Show Compassion, concern or true caring:
On a 10+: Hold 3
On a 7–9: Hold 2 and they Hold 1
On a 6-: Miss: Things go poorly.
While you’re interacting, either player may spend their hold to ask the other player these questions, 1 for 1:
•   What’s really troubling your character?
•   How can I help your character?
•   Where is your character vulnerable?
•   What would your character like me to do?

If you Show Contempt, disdain or indifference:
On a 10+: Miss: It goes badly.
On a 7–9: Hold 1 and they Hold 1
On a 6-: Hold 2
While you’re interacting, either player may spend their hold to ask the other player these questions, 1 for 1:
•   How could I get your character to ___?
•   Where is your character vulnerable?
•   Are you telling the truth?

When you Display Expertise[/i] about a problem at hand, through word or action, roll+brains:
On a 10+: All three
On a 7–9: Choose two
•   You’re actually right: the MC will tell you an interesting fact about the current problem, and you may ask a follow-up question or two.
•   Everyone realizes you’re right
•   You’re not exposed to what’s going on
On a 6-: Miss: You get it wrong.

When you Feign Competence in the face of a difficult or dangerous situation roll+nerve:
On a 10+: Choose two
On a 7–9: Choose one
•   Your peers accept you
•   Your patient/subordinate trusts you
•   Your superiors find you credible
•   You’re actually right
On a 6-: Miss: They see through your façade.

When you Stick Your Hand In to someone else’s situation roll+Cxn:
On a 10+: If an NPC, they succeed or fail, your choice. If a PC, they take +2 or -2 to their roll, your choice.  If the character succeeds, they owe you a favor or, if a PC, they can give you +1Cxn instead, their choice.
On a 7–9: If an NPC, they succeed or fail, your choice.  If a PC, they take +1 or -1, your choice.  Regardless, you’re exposed and/or vulnerable.
On a 6-: Miss: You definitely don’t help.


A note on rolls:
For the most part rolling in The Ward is just like Apocalypse World where “high” equals “good”; in some cases, however, a low roll is the “good” result, particularly Show Contempt.  This is intentional!  When you’re under pressure, feeling like crap, or just having a bad day, it’s much “easier” to show contempt than compassion, and the game works that way.  Just so you know, 7-9 is always a “weak success” and any time a move has a “bad” result, it’ll be listed as a “miss”, along with the roll result and, unless there’s actually mechanics listed, whatever is written in that “miss” section is simply secret code to the MC to make a move as hard and direct as they like…
"If you get shot enough times, your body will actually build up immunity to bullets. The real trick lies in surviving the first dozen or so..."
-- Pope Nag, RPG.net - UNKNOWN ARMIES

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Hildy

  • 25
Re: [The Ward] Medical drama powered by the Apocalypse
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2016, 02:58:50 PM »
Neat idea! Lots of stuff emulates the action of police dramas or crime shows, but the medical drama (and comedy) is clearly something that draws in viewers. It would be interesting to see how that translates to the tabletop.

Re: [The Ward] Medical drama powered by the Apocalypse
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2016, 12:06:40 AM »
Nice! I've been working on my own 'MASHED' which also has a hospital focus (see the "MASHWorld" thread and the new playtest PDF link: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/30189637/MASHED_playtest_v160424.pdf) but to a lesser degree.

Not to cannibalize your own game and time, but I imagine you'd have some good feedback for me, if you want to check it out. ;)