Author Topic: Do we have to have stats? Or basic moves?  (Read 2968 times)

Chris

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Do we have to have stats? Or basic moves?
« on: July 15, 2010, 12:54:29 AM »
Here's something I've been playing with: why do we have the stats? Their main purpose is to differentiate PCs and focus their skills into "class appropriate" blocks while still offering character options.

But the character moves do the same thing. A brainer isn't really weird because they have +2 weird; they're weird because their moves are crazy fucking weird.

You still get differentiation with the varying options of moves. My savvyhead will be different from your savvyhead.

Now stats also affect basic moves; they help make the skinner better at seducing than the gunlugger. They, with the stats, make a reason to play different classes through mechanical differentiation that comes with applying different pluses and minuses on the same basic move.

So....

What if we take the stats out and then just move the basic moves into each character playbook while making them different.

So the skinner's seduce move is called something entirely different and the "list options" of +10 and 7-9 are generally "better" than that of the gunlugger. For instance, maybe the gunlugger can seduce okay, still at 2d6, but on a 7-9 he picks from options that hurt someone mentally or physically. And his 10 might include the need for some assurance right now.

Each basic move gets a rewrite with not only the flavor of their class, but also the general perceived skill set.

I'm not saying that this is a "problem" with AW. Nah, as you guys may have noticed I actually like the whole stats/leveling thing in AW.

It's more for a game I've been working on called The Colony, where the players are the first team down on a planet that was recently terraformed.

There is a lot more stuff I'm working on (like associative moves that establish and mechanically re-enforce familial relations and also moves that change over time to re-enforce Fronts rather than a straight progression system) but the stats are what really jumped out at me.

A player of mine playing a gunlugger - "So now that I took infinite knives, I'm setting up a knife store." Me - "....what?" Him - "Yeah, I figure with no overhead, I'm gonna make a pretty nice profit." Me - "......"

Shreyas

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Re: Do we have to have stats? Or basic moves?
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2010, 01:42:47 AM »
Stats and basic moves do some particular things vs. your alternative implementation with, uh, let's call them "similar moves" customized for each character type.

- Repeatedly using stats ties related moves together. Sharp ties the "read" moves together; you know that if a given character is good at one, they're good at the other, unless they have a stat-replacement move.
- Stat-replacement moves are a shortcut way to re-color character actions; when a brainer uses Unnatural Lust Transfixion, you know she's seducing people with her creepy brain powers, and one supposes that the player's expected to portray accordingly.
- They allow the MC to come up with relevant custom moves for threats. In your system, I'm not sure how that would work really.

Given that, maybe poke around at some of the ideas in Knife & Candle, regarding modifying the basic moves based on what the characters are or are doing. I personally find it to be an interesting middle ground between 'custom moves for everyone' and 'all moves are the same'.

Orpheus

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Re: Do we have to have stats? Or basic moves?
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2010, 04:31:01 AM »
Short answer? Stats are highlighted. Moves are not. It's important.

The modifier on stats gives you an incentive/decentive to take a certain tack when faced with a problem.  When you pick a specific stat line or improvement? That's you as a player saying, "I want to do this with this character." 

The 'mark XP when you roll a highlighted stat' also gives you an incentive/decentive to take a certain tack when faced with a problem.  The stat that someone highlights? That's someone else in the group saying, "I want to see you do this with this character."

Think about it. Long answer waits for later.

Chris

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Re: Do we have to have stats? Or basic moves?
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2010, 11:12:01 AM »
Yeah, you can easily just have them highlight a move, or any other number of advancement methods.

And remember, for the little game I'm doing, there's no xp based advancement.

When you pick a specific stat line or improvement? That's you as a player saying, "I want to do this with this character." 


Same goes with picking a move, though, especially if the move list is expanded. Hmmmm.

A player of mine playing a gunlugger - "So now that I took infinite knives, I'm setting up a knife store." Me - "....what?" Him - "Yeah, I figure with no overhead, I'm gonna make a pretty nice profit." Me - "......"