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Author Topic: First RPG Design Challenge  (Read 1756 times)

Abyssal Maw

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« Reply #30 on: September 14, 2006, 01:29:51 pm »
Not that I hold anything against Stolze. I just think In Spaaaaace or Meatbot Massacre would be more of a game than

"..ok, I'll pretend I'm the president and you pretend your'e like .. the SecDef. And we discuss what to do about the alien invasion. For like 2 hours."

Man. There's just nothing there.

On the other hand if the game were like this I would play it:

GM: "ok, so your'e duck hunting, see.. and you notice Jim's character is over in the blinds."

Player (as Dick Cheney): "I shoot him in the face!"

GM: "roll for inititative!"

See, now thats a game.
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One Horse Town

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« Reply #31 on: September 14, 2006, 01:48:29 pm »
I've had an idea similar to a previous poster, (strangely enough a few days ago).

Archetypes printed on card-stocks (or my original thought, laminates). This has a picture of a typical member of your class. It includes Stats and that's it, the stats take care of all the skills, there's no need to include them individually.


Combat (this covers all combat type skills)
Social (all social skills)
Magic (you get it)
KNowledge (facts, botany, lores etc)
Sneaking (move silently, hide, pick pockets all the sheaky stuff)
Skills (anything not covered above. Climbing, tie ropes etc)

These values are from 0-6 and each archetype has them printed on the sheet.

Success at a task isn't bound to how difficult the task is, but to how good you are at it. Thus to succeed at a task covered by one of your stats, you have to roll equal to or under that stats rating on a single d6. Simple.

Opposed rolls are decided by the character who has the higher stat rating, if both achieve a success, or a random 'roll off' of a d6 if still tied.

Damage to a person makes you turn your character sheet sidways (like tapping in a CCG), further damage upside down, then finally turn the sheet over on the third bit of damage. Now the PC is out and possibly dying. No damage rolls, no different damage for different weapons (if an archetype is a barbarian who uses 2handed weapons, then his combat rating is higher, not the damage). Wearing armour allows you to ignore one piece of damage in a combat.

Magic items serve as a bonus to your stats or give you a rating where you had none before. Weapons could give 'double damage' or armour enable ignoring two lots of damage etc.

Money and treasure is rated by what it can buy you, such as; weapon, armour, grimoire, magic item, home etc. etc

That's a game right there. If there's interest, i might start writing some stuff up (largely archetypes as the rest sorts itself out).


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« Reply #32 on: September 14, 2006, 01:59:29 pm »
So ideas I'm hearing people like thus far are...

A) Cardstock archetypes.

B) Scooby/Goonies

Just for the sake of the argument, I'm gonna throw out a couple of other suggestions...

American Politics Parody Adventure Game (a la Team America: World Police)

Time bandits-esque "Steal shit... in TIME."

(Buddha Blaster, Kung-Fu Ghandi, Pope mailbox baseball, etc.)

Caesar Slaad

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« Reply #33 on: September 14, 2006, 02:00:11 pm »
Its funny you all talk about archtypes on cards (though multiple cards that add aspects is a new twist.) See up in my first post where I talk about Dream Park? All the archetypal characters were printed on cards. Each character had a little color pic on one side, and their 10 "skills" on the other.

I could see gutting FATE for this "mixed archetype cards" thing:

Quote from: fonkaygarry
I'm totally in agreement with the idea of modular character creation.  In a police procedural, the character sheets could consist of linked pre-printed cards.  Each card would have an archetype name and a listing of skills that archetype has.  To spice things up, there could be a series of flaw cards, focused only on those things the character does poorly.

Example:  I want to make a shooty officer who has his head on straight and puts duty first.  So, I take a "Marksman" card, which has healthy percentages on shooting and firearms skills at the cost of investigational and interpersonal skills.  Next, I take the "Ice Cool" card which, again, trades high percentages in my favored skills for low skills in others.  Finally, to make things interesting, I pick my characters flaw card, "Toe the Line", which puts him at odds with any ideas or actions that go against orthodox police work.

You mention FATE earlier in your post; this is a perfect fit for it. Each card could have one aspect on it, each aspect with 4 different skill picks. Pick one card per aspect, tally the skills, and away you go!

For reference:

It's free. It's open source.

I may actually try throwing something together like this. Anyone want to help me come up with these cards? I may start another thread if there are those of you whose thoughts are leaning other directions with this.
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« Reply #34 on: September 14, 2006, 03:21:41 pm »
* Players can focus on roleplaying their characters rather than creating the overall game narrative

This means the players can focus on their characters rather than the traditional job of the "GM".  I don't think it means they have to sit around talking though... I think the three options for the traditional job of the GM would be:
1) A single player - The traditional GM
2) Equally amongst all the players (which is what Levi is thinking)
3) The game itself (which is what I'm thinking)


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« Reply #35 on: September 14, 2006, 04:08:09 pm »
Stuart, have you seen either Arkham Horror or Avalon Hill's old Magic Realm? Or to get really obscure, SPI's old Wreck of the BSM Pandora? All have a sort of "game as GM" quality, although I'm very fond of Arkham Horror.

Also you're absolutely right that "winning" for a GM could just be that the baddy gets away or the gang is upstaged by the police. I don't know why I overlooked those simple options.


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« Reply #36 on: September 15, 2006, 01:29:43 am »
Quote from: Balbinus
I think this is very clever, would one card modify another?

There's no reason why that couldn't happen.  To steal another idea, the whole game would be "skill" based.  I don't see a need to differentiate between attributes and skills for an entry level game (unless we go with Slaad's idea about FATE, which I think is pretty cool.)

Characters would all start out with a base value in each skill.  On a hypothetical 1-6 scale for d6-based resolution I would imagine 2 as the base.  Each card would then add or subtract from each value.  So if you took a "Burnout" card that upped your Lunatic Insight (let's say +2) and cut your Rationality (let's say -2 because I'm a d20 GM), you'd still wait until you had all your cards to add up the modifiers.

The idea is to have cards in three categories.  I imagine Training, Talents and Trouble (alliteration FTW.)    Splitting up the categories like that would ease creation of a character's backstory.  Picked up Martial Artist (Training), Poetic (Talent) and Emo (Trouble?)  Sounds like a judo player going through a goth phase to me!

Or were you thinking in a more holistic approach, in which each card had a proportional effect on the modifiers of all the other cards?  Math isn't something I've studied very much, so I've no idea how that might work.

Slaad, I'd like to help with your FATE idea.  I've no real design chops, but it's an interesting enough idea that I'd like to be involved.

One idea for the competition angle:  Limit the number of scenes in a game.  Each scene would have a general breakdown (X number of clues, X NPCs to question/fight/tickle, X appearances by the Big Bad,) with the "finale" scene only coming around if the PCs have enough clues to piece the mystery together.  If they do, cue the climactic conflict.  If they missed too much, enter the cops with the perp/Big Bad.  It puts the players on the clock, providing a sense of urgency and putting a time limit on the game.

Maybe there could be an Advanced ruleset with rules for advancement.  Every time the PCs win, they could earn points toward buying off their flaws.  After Shaggy's unmasked enough ghouls, he figures it's time to lay off the Scooby Snacks and cuts his "Smoked the Fuck Out" penalty by one.
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