In a Wicked Age

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Comments

  • edited October 2007
    Re rules, I hadn't spotted the issue of conflicts such as "endeavour - influence others" vs "endeavour - asserting myself", with the potential of "exhausting" as opposed to "injuring" (either being able to subtract dice) and whether they are meant to or not. Subject to others weighing in, that seems fine that they do (it would be 'exhaust' not injure in that case).
    I'm not sure we're on the same page here. The rule is that dice damage (from any conflict) is applied either as exhaustion (damage to 'exert yourself') or as injury (damage to 'endure duress'). That is, dice damage never goes to any other endeavor - just one of those two, as chosen by the player of the damaged character. I'm suggesting that it should be possible to apply dice damage to other endeavors, as well, depending on the circumstances.

    Is that what you took to be my meaning?

    If so, I don't think it follows because 'endure duress' and 'exert yourself' are both basically physical endeavors. You could argue that being humiliated or losing an argument or getting enchanted by the sorcerer or something similarly non-physical could somehow 'tire' you or make you more apathetic ... but that strikes me as a pretty stretched argument. Why not just hit a more appropriate endeavor, instead?

    There's also the technical aspect: someone with two strong stats, one attached to 'endure' and one attached to 'exert', is tougher than anyone else, and for no good reason. It makes certain character builds less viable, but there's no clear reason that that should be so - it seems to be just a inexplicable twist of the rules.

    In any case, I actually posted a question about that at the Forge. I might just be missing the point of it. And ... having just checked the relevant Forge thread, Vincent indicates that, in his present version of the rules (which we don't have, yet), endeavors don't exist. So maybe we just make our own call.
    When do we move from pitch-thread to "IC-Thread"? Suggest once the "list" above finalized.
    Sure.
  • edited October 2007
    • the ghosts and devils (or their leader, or a ghost or devil)
    • a fur-trapper
    • the fur-trapper's daughter
    • a conjurer
    • uncouth spirits (or their leader, etc)
    • an innkeeper
    • a wealthy guest at the inn
    • kin of a slain traveler and/or investigators looking into same
    Naturally, I invite people to rewrite this, but here's a version:

    A wealthy conjurer is staying at the inn while he searches for appropriate blood for his enticement of the ghosts and devils that meet in a nearby ruin. The ghosts, in fact, are the ghosts of the people murdered by the innkeeper ... other wealthy travelers that he killed, hiding their bones in the ruin. There is a fur-trapper (possibly owing a debt to either the innkeeper or the conjurer), and his daughter might happen to have the 'blood of an innocent' that the conjurer requires.

    Possible things: The conjurer doesn't need to be a bad guy. He could just be needing the blood of a pig or something, and he might be looking to exorcise the ghosts/demons. Also, the innkeeper could be the conjurer ... he kills people, takes their money, then binds their ghosts.

    Also, the daughter could be somebody. The conjurer or the innkeeper, for instance, or she could be dead (one of the ghosts). Actually, I kind of like her being the conjurer or the innkeeper.
  • And for setting ... this is definitely a situation that doesn't need much detail, but could we say something like: An inn by the side of the road in, say, medieval Germany? Not looking for some kind of German historical realism, but just for a consistent feel.
  • edited October 2007
    re exhaust/injure, I see what you're saying, yes misread a bit first time. Exhaust or Injure go to Exert/Endure, you negotiate losses to other things than the stats assigned to those in the "negotiating consequences" phase. Thinking about it, that seems okay then, losses elsewhere come in via negotiation. I suggest we try it that way and see if outcomes wonky.

    On situation possibilities, why don't we wait until (a) another 24 hours pass and rugsri, Simon, Garvey weigh in on the list. The list's members and the situation aren't elaborated until we get to (b) starting play with the Players going first as indicated picking the ones to take as PC's, the GM picking rest, then the GM stating one character's interest, Players going and GM jumping in with another turn between Players as rules suggest, if GM desires, and presenting the interests of the rest anyway at end. That's the process in the draft rules and the division of authority in game they suggest is part of what attracts me to it.

    On the weakness of characters who put lots into Defending, presumably that helps them avoid harm, Assertive and Influential characters are more effective in those sorts of Endeavours. Would the trick be for them to instigate conflicts using those, and also to assign the non-Endure Exert dice to their other freeformed endeavours since they won't deteriorate from lost to Endure and Exert. Also, since stats refresh and can be re-arranged each Chapter (as one of the choices to take and existing or new mastery or bump up a mastery) one can be high Endure Duress in one Chapter and high something else next, you're not trapped. You've got to be wiped out in a single Chapter to be killed if Player not done with character yet.

    I admit I'm vague on when a Chapter ends, I assume it's when the interests declared at Chapter start have been resolved as interests refresh each chapter.

    I'm okay with 'feudal Germany' as template for feel, sort of like Warhammer's fantasy setting of the "old world", pseudo-germanic names and titles etc.

    Rob
  • The list looks good to me. I'm still pretty happy with staying out of this round and then maybe jumping in again later.

    Something I was thinking about is that, as per the rules, a conflict happens when you're doing something that's in conflict with the desires of another character. It should usually be clear when that's happening, but I think some sensitivity should be exercised about how you describe what your character is doing. For example, end your post with a possible point of conflict, or even with a roll of the dice. It's also probably not a good idea to quibble with something in the middle of someone's post. If they're like "He creeps into Alan's house at night and tries to murder him in his bed", don't be like "No way! He'd never get into the house" but rather make the conflict about what they've made it about, the attempted murder. Unless it's something you really can't live with.
  • I admit I'm vague on when a Chapter ends, I assume it's when the interests declared at Chapter start have been resolved as interests refresh each chapter.
    It's when you decide to end the chapter. That's all ... find a good stopping point, and you're done. If there're plot threads left unresolved, you can feed them into your personal oracle as story points to be selected later.
    On situation possibilities, why don't we wait until (a) another 24 hours pass and rugsri, Simon, Garvey weigh in on the list.
    Well, what I'm really doing, here, is discussing who the characters actually are. Is the daughter also the innkeeper? That's important, and it has to happen before characters are chosen.
    On the weakness of characters who put lots into Defending, presumably that helps them avoid harm, Assertive and Influential characters are more effective in those sorts of Endeavours. Would the trick be for them to instigate conflicts using those, and also to assign the non-Endure Exert dice to their other freeformed endeavours since they won't deteriorate from lost to Endure and Exert. Also, since stats refresh and can be re-arranged each Chapter (as one of the choices to take and existing or new mastery or bump up a mastery) one can be high Endure Duress in one Chapter and high something else next, you're not trapped. You've got to be wiped out in a single Chapter to be killed if Player not done with character yet.
    I'm not entirely sure where you're going with this ... I do feel I should point out, though, that this is a fairly lethal game. Even with the rules as written (dice damage can only be applied to 'endure' and 'exert', affected player's choice), and with the 'super-tough' character who has his best dice put in 'endure' and 'exert', you can only take dice damage, um, six times. Which can totally happen. Remember, when you win, you don't necessarily want to accept negotiation. Often, the tactics say you want to pound down the other guy's dice, instead.

    And that's one extreme ... the pumped up, exploiting-a-flaw-in-the-system character. The opposite (either blissfully-unaware-of or ignoring said flaw) could go down in, um, two failed conflicts. God ... that's worse than I thought. In any case, getting wiped out in a single chapter can happen, and often does, to read the AP reports. Check out mine, even - two of three characters were removed from play, and the last man standing was one step away from dropping.

    * * *

    I really do think it is necessary to remove the restriction on applying dice damage to only 'endure' and 'exert'. There are three reasons:

    • First, there's the reasonability of it. You've been backed into a corner and humiliated in front of the community. Why take damage to 'endure' or 'exert', endeavors used solely for physical activity? This isn't something I think should be left to negotiation, since that undermines the use of dice damage as an always-applicable baseline to fall back on if negotiation breaks down. It should just be: I'm humiliated, check, I'll take damage to 'assert' unless I can negotiate an alternative.

    • Second, there's the mechanical consequence of the roll. In all other cases, distributing stats among your endeavors is purely a matter of describing how your character deals with situations. If you put a strong stat in 'influence' or 'assert', you can defend yourself against attack through social means. If you put a strong stat in 'defend', you can fight back. If you put it in 'endure', you can resist the attack passively.

    But placing this emphasis on those two endeavors for the purpose of dice damage screws up the balance. It adds to the significance of those stats (they determine how long you'll stay alive), and there's nothing to balance it, elsewhere - it's the only thing in the game that ascribes particular significance to any given endeavor. So, in a system that is otherwise built on seeing out your base character concept, giving equal treatment to all, there's this one thing that favors certain builds/concepts over others. Not good.

    • Third, it doesn't do anything, aside from cause these problems. There's really no good reason for that restriction to be there. In my tabletop game, we chucked it halfway through the game and were like, "Hey ... that's better. Cool." It's nothing but annoying.
  • Why don't we let others weigh in before continuing.

    I see the argument that it should be the stat used in the Endeavour chosen that is threatened with damage. If you have a favourite stat and use if for lots of Endeavours (as I read it nothing stops you putting the same stat on all your free form endeavours except that's it's kinda boring), you are risking it being burned down, this encourages you to switch tactics in a Chapter when one tactic fails you and also encourages not overusing same stat.

    If others are fine with it, sure. Otherwise I think the default should be the game as written (even though Vincent has actually rewritten rules but not put them out yet), I admit I didn't really sign up to be re-writing a game as opposed to playing it. If a character loses about 3 conflicts in a row without getting on owe list in process then yes dice attrition could kill a d8 d6 stat that kept getting picked on. Then again, 3 lost conflicts and no interesting concessions maybe it's time for character to be done. Assuming PC's are playing contrary interests, you're getting pretty beat up by that point. I assume GM is not pushing that hard for death and is pushing for story-enhancing concessions.
  • edited October 2007
    I don't have any opinions of the rules yet. I'd like to see the system in action, right now it all feels pretty abstract. I'd lean towards a minimal level of tampering with the system. I like the Polaris-like negotiation scheme though. Structure there seems needed for PbP.

    As for the situation, I think we should just leave it at the words from the Oracle and the characters listed out. Then we should all pick characters, and state intentions. If somebody wants to play the daughter and somebody else wants to play the inn-keeper, then they can't be the same. Or maybe somebody could call both, stating they are one and the same. Then we can state intentions for each character and that'll dictate the specifics of the situation. So, who wants to pick first? Since I was the last to join, I'll leave it to somebody else to choose first.
  • Actually, I think first-come, first-served makes sense. We lack an 'order around the table', so that's as good a pecking order as any. So ... go.

    And, alright, that makes sense. If you want to claim a character to fill more than one role, go for it. To recollect everything:
    • A fallen-in mansion, where by night ghosts and devils meet.
    • A fur-trapper, simple but good-natured, and his daughter.
    • A conjurer who needs blood to entice his uncouth spirits.
    • An innkeeper who murders and robs his wealthy guests.
    • the ghosts and devils (or their leader, or a ghost or devil)
    • a fur-trapper
    • the fur-trapper's daughter
    • a conjurer
    • uncouth spirits (or their leader, etc)
    • an innkeeper
    • a wealthy guest at the inn
    • kin of a slain traveler and/or investigators looking into same
  • edited October 2007
    Sigismund Orn, ghost of a slain traveler

    Art d8 d6 -> Exert (Exhaust damage)
    Grace d10 d4 -> Defend, Assert, Influence
    Guts d12 d6 -> Endure (Injure damage)

    Other Endeavours - Pass Unseen (Art), Sense Emotions and Intentions (Guts), Sense the Unnatural (Art),

    (leaving declaration of Interest till next round)

    [we should probably move to a IC thread with OOC thread soon, OOC - I pick a ghost because it leads to obvious interests/conflicts with some other characters and it's cool to me, I do so expecting that in conflicts etc. others can easily narrate injury etc. to my ghost via various means as harmful to a ghost as a blade to a mortal etc., not trying for any uber character and the Endeavours really same as a thief or sorcerer might have for sneaking etc.]
  • Wanda, the trapper’s daughter

    Art d10, d4
    Grace d8,d6
    Guts d12,d6

    Asserting Self
    (Guts)
    Defending Self
    (Grace)
    Enduring Duress
    (Art)
    Exerting Myself
    (Guts)
    Influencing Others
    (Grace)

    Other Endeavors
    Skin Demons (Art)
    Wilderness Lore (Guts)
  • edited October 2007
    Andreas Richter, a wealthy conjurer

    Art d12, d8
    Grace d6, d4
    Guts d10, d6

    Asserting Self Art
    Defending Self Grace
    Enduring Duress Guts
    Exerting Myself Guts
    Influencing Others Art

    Other Endeavors
    Binding the Ghosts and Spirits - Art
    Making Love - Guts
    Reciting Ancient Lore - Art
    Summon the Demons - Art

    Note: Meant to be a wealthy guest at the inn, as well as the conjurer
  • Ok, that's it, I think. That leaves me with:

    • potentially, other uncouth spirits
    • the fur-trapper
    • the innkeeper

    We can probably let 'kin or an investigator' go.

    I think I'll make the other uncouth spirits a mastery, but not assign it to someone. They don't seem worth a character, but it's clear they'll come into play, so I'll stat it out as a mastery ahead of time.

    Stats for the trapper and innkeeper shortly, and then we'll go to a new thread. I'll stick the sheets in a wiki, so we don't have to refer back.
  • Simon, are you playing this round? It didn't seem clear from your comments above. We certainly have other interesting characters available.
  • That's true - it isn't entirely clear. I'll wait.

    Garvey, you may want to rethink basing both Endure and Exert on Guts. That means you'll take all dice damage to that stat, regardless. Three hits, with the antagonist refusing negotiation, and you're done.

    Though, again, I dislike that rule.
  • If "spirits" (as in bind the) is meant to include "ghosts" suggest that be clear.
  • edited October 2007
    Posted By: ValvorikIf "spirits" (as in bind the) is meant to include "ghosts" suggest that be clear.
    I suppose so. I've modified the sheet to indicate that.
  • Well, the ghosts and demons will likely be considered one mastery, in this case, due to how they are handled in the two relevant oracle entries. Maybe not.

    In any case, it doesn't really matter - you aren't strictly confined to the endeavors on you sheet. Or, rather, you can do things not specifically outlined in your endeavors ... the extra endeavors are just there to prevent confusion later on. Generally speaking, if anyone wanted to bind something, in that sense, I'd say it's Assert or Influence ... maybe Exert. Specifying with an extra endeavor just sets it in stone.

    In this case, if Garvey wanted to bind anything vaguely spirit-like (ghosts, demons, or anything else that would come up, even in a later chapter), he'd default to Binding Spirits because, hey, that's pretty obviously more relevant than anything else. He'd only need to further specify if he wanted to, say, bind elemental spirits with Guts. For some reason.
  • Thanks for waiting, but I am gonna sit out this round, and watch how it plays out. I'm looking forward to jumping in later though!
  • This exchange came up in a playtest discussion over on the forge, and I thought it was relevant here:

    The Danish playtester wrote:
    Most importantly, "What you use is what you risk". We have a rule replacing the standard Injury/Exhaustion baseline for consequences of defeat with damage to whatever dice you were using in the conflict. As always, it's subject to negotiation.
    To which Vincent replied:
    For the public record, I'm totally cool with this and barely even consider it a rules mod. Since you can get the same effect informally without deviating from the written rules, formalizing it doesn't bug me a bit.
  • Thanks Simon, that tilts me over a bit, I don't object then to "what you use is what you lose" being the "default, no negotiated offer accepted" standard.
  • I was saying more that it should just be something relevant to the action, not necessarily what you used ... but this works for me. Maybe better, in a way, since it lets you choose where the damage will go if you lose - if you have a weak stat, it can't be targeted by someone out to get you. Of course, as a price you'll only be able act in certain ways, but that just makes sense.
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