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Apocalypse World / Re: Rules for Embodied Tabletop Play
« Last post by Munin on January 18, 2018, 09:01:50 PM »
I once ran a freeform game for some friends during a camping trip, I think there were 5 players. I had each one create a character (high concept framework, one great "attribute," one poor "attribute," and three "skills" or things they were good at). So for example, the "Xenobiologist" was and inquisitive bookworm with good intelligence and poor courage, who was good at bio-science, computers, and math. Easy.

I then had each player come up with a character secret and tell it to the person on their left, including how that person knew their secret. So the Xenobiologist was herself an alien-hybrid, and the Cyborg knew because he had been her bodyguard since she had started working for "The Lab."

Finally, once they were all finished, I had each person pass their character to the person on their right, at which point we began play.

Everyone loved that twist, and we had a blast.
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Apocalypse World / Re: Rules for Embodied Tabletop Play
« Last post by Paul T. on January 18, 2018, 02:53:24 AM »
I like that a lot.

Some variations:

The "chairs" aren't characters but they are roles (like the MC role). Perhaps one is the troublemaker, one is trying to keep war from breaking out, and so forth.

For Apocalypse World, the "roles" could by playbooks, too. At first, the Hardholder was running the place, but now that Brainer is. How will they be different? And the Hardholder... is now the medic/healer in the place of the Angel.

I have no idea what game would find this an appropriate design, but experimenting with stuff like this is usually fruitful in some fashion.

There was a one-shot at gaming club I was a part of once where there was one PC and four GMs. The GMs switched places on the hour, for a four-hour session.

That's not the way I would have organized things (each GM player is inactive for 3/4 of the playtime, for starters!) but apparently it was still a lot of fun for everyone involved, and included lots of surprises for everyone. (The GMs were not "in" on a certain plot or storyline, so each had to interpret the previous GM's input and decisions into a larger story.)
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Apocalypse World / Re: Rules for Embodied Tabletop Play
« Last post by bonkydog on January 17, 2018, 10:40:55 PM »
A more extreme experiment:

  When XXXXX happens, every player except the MC moves one seat counter-clockwise.
  This is your new seat.  This is your new character.

What is XXXXX?  How often should it happen?  "Never" is the sensible answer.  What are others?

Can our group drop the "except the MC" clause?

Perhaps the rule is retired once we have cycled back to our original places?

Is moving to a new chair important?
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Apocalypse World / Re: Crow's Flats: Skyfall - A Scenario and brief AP
« Last post by Paul T. on January 17, 2018, 09:48:05 PM »
Groovy! Thanks.
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Apocalypse World / Re: Crow's Flats: Skyfall - A Scenario and brief AP
« Last post by Ebok on January 17, 2018, 06:37:00 AM »
Yup.
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Apocalypse World / Re: Crow's Flats: Skyfall - A Scenario and brief AP
« Last post by Paul T. on January 17, 2018, 04:20:54 AM »
Ebok,

I found that last post of your harder to follow, but if I understand correctly, it sounds like we're talking about the same things. I like your suggestion of tying her situation in with another faction/Front/PC/NPC/someone, to complicate the situation.

If you meant something else by "my honest suggestion is to make that position more interesting by bringing the players into that drama", then let me know!
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Apocalypse World / Re: Crow's Flats: Skyfall - A Scenario and brief AP
« Last post by Ebok on January 17, 2018, 02:16:21 AM »
I wasn't saying this is the only way to use Love Letters, just that I've found it works out pretty consistently.

As for Newton. I mean, she's just an idea right now. My first reaction would be that the strings attached to her with the other factions are more important than she is at the moment, and by bringing focus on them you point to their strings to her and thus create more player interest. In the end, it's the players that elevate NPCs through these stages. Right now, what makes her interesting has nothing to do with her, but her position. So my honest suggestion is to make that position more interesting by bringing the players into that drama.

If you don't want to do this, and you want to bring them into contact with her immediately, then my suggestion would be to bring her back to the players in such a way that forces hard decisions. Make them choose what to do, what to lose, or what to get. Since the player delegated when it could've been him, that, in the vein of AW, is ripe for ALL KINDS of shit to go wrong.

What I wonder about is if she wasn't stolen away from someone she loves--someone with a less then favorable opinion of our Hocus sullying her, or his deal to sell her. So if I brought her back, I might do it by force, with her in tears, and the surviving one or two of the NPCs being all like, hey--boss, I don't think those folk is giving up. Then let the players decide what to do.

Still, though, it depends on your fiction, your cult, I don't know these things. But I can say that you should make the most of anything interesting you got on screen--just don't overestimate the importance of someone st stage 1. The stages represent player involvement after all, and no involvement often means no attachment to what happens.

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Apocalypse World / Re: Crow's Flats: Skyfall - A Scenario and brief AP
« Last post by Paul T. on January 16, 2018, 05:42:53 PM »
Ebok,

I don't see anything about the description of "love letters" in the AW book to indicate that there's any kind of clear line between "custom moves" and "love letters", although I can see how you might draw a bit of a distinction, as you do in your post.

My own "love letters" tend to position PCs relative to threats and opportunities, or tease out what kind of thing they're more or less interested in. It's a more fun way of asking, "hey, are you more interested in capturing one of their spies or dealing with trouble back home?"

Introducing new material is also a good thing to do. My own love letters for this mini-campaign did some of that, although they didn't go as smoothly as I had hoped due to a couple of things we should have done differently (as I wrote in my original post).

Your post above on NPCs, however, is really solid, I think: a wonderful bit of "AW MCing theory" I'll definitely be keeping under my belt. Your stages make a lot of sense to me, and they put the focus on the right aspects of the NPCs and how to use them to tell stories.

In my case, "Newton" is still at Stage One (we haven't even seen her on stage yet, although she was invented by one of the PCs - the Hocus - so we know one of her connections already), and I'm looking at taking her to Stage Two, in terms of your framework here.

I had hoped to jump directly to Stage Three, I suppose, by creating a situation where another PC (the Savvyhead) was going to have to deal with her, establishing some kind of relationship. Unfortunately, the PC chose to delegate this business to some NPCs, who are now running off after her. Hence my need to think about how to handle a rather important situation/scene "offscreen".

Do you have any specific ideas on how to develop her further along the lines of your framework in a short timeframe? She's geographically separated from the PCs (being abducted, currently, and across a river which isn't easily crossed), so framing them into a scene together isn't entirely obvious here. A custom move, love letter, or clever MC move seems more appropriate here.
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Apocalypse World / Re: NPC Name Habit
« Last post by Borogove on January 14, 2018, 04:05:35 PM »
Sam Kabo Ashwell's Apocalypse Fuel has a great name generator -- mostly list based, but with a little bit of procedural transformation and great combinations. A sample:

Urm
Rat
Bo Shotgun
Lupin
Dump Bounder
Velvet Lark
the Gorgon Lord
Granola
Wicked Lupin
Bomb Sev
New Sig
Dragon Basher
Autumn
Squicky Squicky
Bog Partner
Sinclair Trembly
Pleasure Boris
Saffron Mo
Badluck
the Crusher Madame
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Apocalypse World / Re: NPC Name Habit
« Last post by bonkydog on January 13, 2018, 09:17:31 PM »
I just realized another reason I love this project.

It produces a textual artifact that expresses layers of meaning in homophonic names and weird orthography  (e.g. "Ferrous", "III") that may be less accessible in the spoken name.

Once the name has been seen in written form, these layers continue to resonate in speech.

Spelling counts.
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