Author Topic: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool  (Read 1075 times)

tsawac

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Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« on: January 19, 2017, 01:08:51 AM »
At the prompting of a friend who's new to MCing, I made Apocalypse Fuel, a random generator that barfs forth brief, prompt-like descriptions of NPC gangs, hardholds, maestro d' establishments, cults and the like: http://samkabo.com/ApocalypseFuel/. The idea is to produce raw material that can be changed around, torn down for scrap, and built on; not any better than what you could come up with yourself, obviously, but perhaps at least something different that you might not have thought of. Or, y'know, if you just need some kind of raiders real quick.

Here's some sample output:
Quote
the Mad Bullet Girls are an allied gang, associated with a hardhold but keeping some independence from it. They are a large gang - 60 violent bastards. They're well armed, including at least one taser; and heavily armored in pre-Fall riot gear. They are savage. They mostly care about fear - they're terrified of someone or something. They are under the unwavering leadership of Ravager Bai Lockjaw. Just now they're planning a broad-daylight raid on the encampment of Claw Spine.
 
Notable members:
Hookhead: much too nervous for this shit; deadly with a wood axe
Quick: looks stunning in aviator shades and a thong; into shoe-collecting
Annsdotter Rough: always tweaking; after your job

I honestly don't know if it'll be helpful! I've had some MCs say that it will be, but no actual play reports yet. (I plan to keep adding to it, so if anyone has suggestions I'm very eager to hear 'em.) If nothing else, though, it's a quick way of producing a whole lot of apocalypse-y names in a hurry:

Quote
Ganglia
Radiator
Trauma
Rowdy Lem Needle
Godking Kim
Fist Em
Cangue
Dimebag
Milan Rocha
Premier Line
Scragger Abe
the Engine Speaker
Saffron Liberty
Dry Raven
W-Horn
Oksana
Essica
Alice Ghost
Vashti
Dank Alice

Paul T.

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Re: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2017, 07:04:08 PM »
I think this is fantastic. Many of the details add really good notes about relationships and reputations, helping these entries be useful in play.

My one qualm is that some of the entries are very low on colourful detail (apocalyptica). It would be nice to see more of that! (I'm thinking of things like the dogs with a second set of eyelids in the AW text.)

Nice work!

Ebok

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Re: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2017, 03:14:16 AM »
Yeah, unless that doesn't fit with a given apocalypse. Then those alien entries might disrupt an otherwise useful output. Seems more like something that should be added case by case to engrain a default into the active story world.

Paul T.

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Re: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2017, 04:06:55 AM »
Perhaps!

I think that - for me - that wouldn't be a problem.

First of all, I am more likely to use a random generator when I have very *few* preconceptions (and that's generally where "apocalypse fuel" would be the most useful), so that's not a detractor for me. Second, if I am using this in a context where the "Colour" could clash with what I already have, it would be very easy to simply ignore it.

Frankly, however, "reimagining" some bit of apocalyptica to fit with the mood and style of what I already have going on would be an *excellent* and fruitful exercise - exactly what I come to random generators for.

Therefore, I would see that as more of a feature than a bug. If what I came for was "A rival gang threatens their turf", but what I got instead was "A rival gang, carrying stop signs as makeshift shields, threatens their turf", it's VERY easy to ignore the "shields", and just take the part that was useful to me ("A rival gang [...] threatens their turf").

(Even more fun, though, perhaps thinking about how stop sign shields *could* fit this situation or setting would prompt me into unexpected territory and lead me to discover or invent something really new; something I wouldn't have thought of trying on my own. That, to me, is perhaps 2/3 of what I come to a random generator for - to prompt new ideas.)

Paul T.

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Re: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2017, 04:15:40 AM »
Oh:

I just ran a few things through the generator... it is REALLY good!

It looks like it's being/been continuously improved (either that, or I have an overactive imagination). Great work!

Borogove

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Re: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2017, 06:29:15 AM »
I'm loving it. I discovered it via a blog post about using it along with Loom of Fate to help with solo AW play and it works amazingly well for it. The name generation is aces, a bit closer to Fury Road than the standard AW names list.

The Maestro establishment's crew relationship details are hilarious, and suggest an additional modification that could be made -- once a gang, or a hardhold, or a character has been introduced, it should be slightly more likely that those entities get referenced by future entity generation, to make callbacks and webs of connection.

tsawac

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Re: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2017, 05:13:17 AM »
Apocalypse Fuel is now up to version 9, and has become a lot more web-friendly (and mobile-friendly, for that matter).

Borogove: you are not the first person to suggest this, but I feel like the Maestro crew thing is already straining the possibility of coherence to pretty near its limit.

nerdwerds

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Re: Apocalypse Fuel - an AW random-generation tool
« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2017, 04:37:53 PM »
I love this! Thanks for sharing, I'll definitely be using it.
Looking for a playbook? Check out my page!
http://nerdwerds.blogspot.com/2012/12/all-of-playbooks.html