Author Topic: Dungeon World is...  (Read 18554 times)

Dan Maruschak

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #30 on: March 07, 2012, 06:43:38 PM »
You play Dungeon World in a "step on up" manner
No, this is 100% wrong.

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Both of us read the "Be a fan of the players" and say "hell yea, I'm a fan of the players!", and then go about being fans of the players in two totally different ways. Dungeon World works for both playstyles.
Does it work for both? I don't know. I think I go about "being a fan of the characters" the way the book tells me to:
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Treat the players' characters like characters you watch on TV. You want to see how things turn out for them. You're not here to make them lose, or to make them win, and definitely not to guide them to your story. You're here to portray the interesting world around them and see how interacting with that world changes everything.

I'm still interested in seeing your answer to the question I asked.

JBMannon

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #31 on: March 07, 2012, 06:52:52 PM »
I've listened to you run your game. If that isn't your goal then you need to reassess how you are using the toolbox. You are running in a "step on up" mode, which is a great choice, but it sounds like that isn't the choice you wanted to make. I'm not saying you are playing it wrong or that you and your players aren't having fun but your characters are dying to fairly weak opponents, that says "step on up" in spades.

sage

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #32 on: March 07, 2012, 07:02:45 PM »
I don't have enough context on either podcast to say anything here. Just a few comments about specific points:

Being a fan of the characters means, as it says in the book, wanting to see them in interesting situations doing interesting things. Seeing how they react and grow and all that. See them do what they do best.

That dovetails nicely with becoming a hero, but you're NOT here to make them heroes.

I'm not quite sure how we're defining "step on up" here. I hate to be that guy, but I'm not sure we all have the same understanding on the Creative Agenda. Are we talking "step on up" as in the DM sets challenges that the players have to prove their meddle by facing? Cause that's not really DW. The GM is under no obligation to make challenges for the players, they present a dangerous world which of course becomes a challenge.

I don't think anyone here is actually saying anything different, I just think we're not using the phrase the same way.




"When characters take damage it's because that's the most fictionally consistent thing to happen based on the moves we've been making."

THIS. If you're doing that you're using damage right.

Dan Maruschak

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #33 on: March 07, 2012, 09:20:08 PM »
You are running in a "step on up" mode
I'm really not. Whether or not you're using the term in the Forge jargon sense, I can't think of any interpretation of the phrase where it would be a good characterization of how I'm playing. I can go into more depth about how I know that if you really need me to, but that seems like it would be pretty far afield from the topic of the thread. The amount of damage or number of deaths isn't really a good proxy for determining someone's approach toward a game.

I would still be very interested in seeing you address the "really earn it" question.

JBMannon

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #34 on: March 07, 2012, 09:56:40 PM »
There are only a few instances where I can see letting a character die in my game (this is my style there are others, but this is mine). If they have fought valiantly dispite obvious danger against an overwhelming force then it makes sense that they could and likely will die. If they are faced with a foe they have stuggled to face then dying when they face that foe is significant. If their death will save someone they care about, the rest of the party, the village, the world, they have decided their sacrifice matters, who am I to argue?

When I will strive not to kill my characters is when they fight a nameless, NPC or a wandering monster. If they confront such a danger when they are low on HP and resources and go for it anyway then they have decided to make their last stand, I did not decide it for them. They "earn it" by making choices that put them in mortal peril. To me that is a sliding scale and very situational. I find ratcheting up the tension does not require dealing out damage on every failed roll, only the ones that matter. It took me a while before I turned the dial to a place that worked for me and my groups. As they progress up in levels the dial will move but my aim will remain the same, if they die, make it count.   

nemomeme

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #35 on: March 10, 2012, 03:37:45 AM »
I thought this thread might garner some interest.

I just popped back in mostly to thank Sage for his answers and to say that I am looking forward to Beta 2. 

The "definitely not OSR" comment was interesting to me.  Two of my friends that read DW assumed it was that without my indicating it might be.  Probably just because there's a lot of OSR out there right now...  Or maybe OSR has now become synonymous with "D&D clone." 

One of them ran it last weekend.  They had a blast but the party got TPK'd.  He commented that one reason he loved it was how "hardcore," "old skool" and "gritty" it was.  I offered that was not necessarily the direction the designers had for it but was glad they enjoyed it.

I think the "half damage" option that is forthcoming may help me with my own personal tightropes with the game.  If nothing else it will add another signal layer to the fiction.  1) "Okay, now you're in a spot and I'm narrating how this guy is going to fuck up your world."  2) "Okay, here's the monster making a Move and incidently doing half damage to you."  3) "You missed again?  Well, fuck.  Here's what happens and you're taking full damage now.  More than your hit points?  Can't say you didn't see it coming...."

I'll be running Dungeon World at Gamestorm on the 24th.  The game filled within a couple hours after I posted it so there's clearly a lot of enthusiasm for the game.  :)

noclue

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #36 on: March 11, 2012, 08:41:50 PM »
I think that in a game about pressing on through a series of encounters, where fighting wounded is a given, the game needs clear and specific rules about damage dealing by the GM. AW doesn't need this guidance because typically wounded players are not expected to rush into the next battle or fire trap, they can seek treatment, hold up in "safe(ish)" territory recuperate, etc.* DW is about heroes facing danger and risk, so the GM is going to be making the decision whether or not to deal killing damage often.

*unless things have gone absolutely fucking pear-shaped, in which case started building coffins.
James R.

    "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which can not fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance-that principle is contempt prior to investigation."
     --HERBERT SPENCER

sage

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #37 on: March 12, 2012, 11:27:12 PM »
What kind of rules for dealing damage are you looking for? Because I feel like we already have those rules. Thus:

Dealing damage is a hard move. That means you only do it on a golden opportunity or a miss (or maybe hack and slash).

(As of beta 2) other moves may deal damage incidentally. Deal half the monster's damage when it hurts someone as a side effect of an attack, say by throwing them into a wall or trampling over them.

All of these fall under the grand principle of Gm moves: your moves are your way of taking some part of the fiction and using it. Your moves don't establish new facts out of nowhere, they take a bit of the fiction and make use of it.

noofy

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #38 on: March 13, 2012, 02:29:42 AM »
Sage, that should be highlighted in the rules, either as a 'boxed advice text' or in the rules proper. So important and so liberating. Fantastic distillation mate :)

All of these fall under the grand principle of Gm moves: your moves are your way of taking some part of the fiction and using it. Your moves don't establish new facts out of nowhere, they take a bit of the fiction and make use of it.

noclue

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #39 on: March 14, 2012, 12:10:17 AM »
Dealing 10 hp to a character with 30 hps is a very different thing from dealing 10hp to a character with 5 hp. I've seen it done well, where it felt right and everyone was cool with it and I've seen it done poorly, where it felt like a let down that the character died. In both, the move followed logically from the fiction, but in one the danger was telegraphed and everyone knew how high the stakes were, while in the other it just seemed like a thing that happened.c
James R.

    "There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which can not fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance-that principle is contempt prior to investigation."
     --HERBERT SPENCER

noofy

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #40 on: March 14, 2012, 02:13:11 AM »
Totally with you on that James. This is explained in the GM section quite succinctly;
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At all times, use your principles and agenda as a filter or inspiration. If something falls flat it's usually because you ignored one of your principles or acted on a different agenda. If you're unsure of what you're about to say just take a moment and look at your agenda and principles to make sure you're abiding by them.

Perhaps there needs to be a reference back to this in the section on 'Death and Dying'. Especially considering that the 'something falling flat' is the death of a character.

sage

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #41 on: March 14, 2012, 01:48:58 PM »
We're constantly revising HP to make that less of an issue. There are very few one-hit kills, only if you make a monster that's clearly beyond the PCs (I Hope) with the latest revision. Instead you're taking maybe a half to a fourth of someone's HP, more or less, depending on class and monster. One move should never take them from "looking good" to "dead." A series of moves, though, can certainly do that.

Keep in mind too that most monsters only live long enough for a few attacks at most and that healing is plentiful. Monsters should hit hard, cause they don't get to hit for long.

Compare this to the D&D clone I playtested a few weeks ago where a starting character had around 15 HP and the first monsters we faced did 1 damage (with a decent chance of missing). That was a game of attrition, where you only got to Cure Light Wounds once. Dungeon World is a game of action, where so long as you can still get into a position to cast it healing is always around the corner (with a roll).

Colin

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #42 on: March 14, 2012, 04:51:17 PM »
Half to a fourth of HP sounds about right even if you inflict harm on every 7-9 hack and slash result, specially when you add in Defend and healing spells.

- Colin

Dan Maruschak

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #43 on: March 15, 2012, 01:11:41 AM »
Dungeon World is a game of action, where so long as you can still get into a position to cast it healing is always around the corner (with a roll).
Maybe it's an artifact of the small party size of my group and the classes they chose (2 players, Paladin + Thief, still first level), but I don't think healing has felt abundant to us. Are we just outliers, or are we maybe missing some easy source of healing?

Anarchangel

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Re: Dungeon World is...
« Reply #44 on: March 15, 2012, 01:46:05 AM »
I hope the "healing is abundant" comment means they're improving Lay on Hands.

Otherwise: Clerics usually get lots. Bards and Rangers can get almost as much. Elven Wizards can have some. Paladins can in a pinch.