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Independent Game Forums => lumpley games => Topic started by: GB Steve on September 15, 2005, 04:43:48 AM



Title: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: GB Steve on September 15, 2005, 04:43:48 AM
With all the Dogs games I've run, Fort Lemon 5(ish) times + Buffalo Run, and in the game I played (I forget the name of the town), much of the conflict has been over matters of major importance:
- Should I shoot them out of anger?
- Is this baby a demon?
- Why don't we burn them now?
- Can a man beat his pregnant wife?
- Is our dead friend a hero or a rapist?
that kind of thing.

Has anyone played a game with a much lower conflict threshold with less grand ambitions, or at least with much less seemingly at stake? I'm interested in things like:
- the sign of life should be made with the right hand.
- mountain men are of god, but not god's creatures.
- planting at the full moon is silly.

And if you have, do you still go to guns over these?

I'm interested in the extent to which the conflicts in Dogs tend to be over things that might seem more important and whether I'm missing out on some more subtle uses of the mechanic.


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: TonyLB on September 15, 2005, 05:53:44 AM
When I ran Kettle Lake (http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forum/index.php?topic=15898.0) the players immediately fixated on house-keeping as a litmus test of how faithful a family was.

But then, someone offered them lemonade... best lemonade they'd ever had.  They took it as an attempt to bribe them in their official duties.  Which it was, but just in the friendly "Let me be nice to you so you're nice to me" way that everyone does anyway.  Damn near shot the woman over that lemonade.

My intuition is that the players will read, off of you and off of each other, whether something is important to the group.  The GM will be a focal point of that.  Me, when somebody says "What do ya mean by offerin' us such good lemonade?" I get all excited, because I think "Wow, this'll be fun."  I suspect that people read that, and take it as permission to make the lemonade important.


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: Meguey on September 15, 2005, 06:29:20 AM
I ran a first session of a town where the issue was hoarding and hunger, and as I remember, the conflicts were much lower stakes. More on the par with 'does the boy tell the truth' and 'can we convince X to stop stealing'. I'm pretty certain there were no guns involved. (Vincent, Joshua, check me on this? This was down in New Haven last fall, I think.) I'm not sure if that's the sort of conflict you mean.


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: Blankshield on September 15, 2005, 06:44:46 AM
I ran a town a little while back that went from Pride all the way up to sin.  I can't remember the exact details, but it was something to do with corn liquor.  I think the pride was "I deserve a little relaxin' after a long day's work" or something similar.

Most of the conflicts were pretty low key stakes, but they were fought hard.  The "what the demons want" was for the Dogs to go overboard and shoot someboy, and they damn near got it.  In the end, it was one of the most satisfying towns for our group because they had to work hard not to pull those guns, and it came to the wire more than once.

James


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: Frank T on September 15, 2005, 07:34:46 AM
I ran a game where the worst thing that had happened were three little girls spreading lies about their teacher, who got suspended, and a sheriff losing his faith and starting to drink. I wouldn’t do it again. Not “grabby” enough.


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: Jason Morningstar on September 15, 2005, 09:20:39 AM
I've written - but have not had a chance to run - several towns with lower stakes, which really appeals to me for some reason. 

http://www.meekmok.com/sassy/dogs/resources.html

Wahanish and Liberty are both pretty bucolic.

--Jason


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: Andrew Morris on September 15, 2005, 09:47:12 AM
When I ran Kettle Lake (http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forum/index.php?topic=15898.0) the players immediately fixated on house-keeping as a litmus test of how faithful a family was.

But then, someone offered them lemonade... best lemonade they'd ever had.  They took it as an attempt to bribe them in their official duties.  Which it was, but just in the friendly "Let me be nice to you so you're nice to me" way that everyone does anyway.  Damn near shot the woman over that lemonade.

If I remember correctly, though, that was all from one player, and the rest of us were pretty unenthusiastic about anything other than getting him to knock it off. It actually highlighted my least favorite element of the system, which is the fact that you have to be involved in a conflict from the beginning or not at all. When the "lemonade" conflict started, I didn't care about it. But when the player drew a gun...well, I wanted to have my Dog go pistol-whip him. Another thing I noticed was that the low level of sin threw me and a few of the other players -- we kept looking for the demons, and there weren't any.

What I got out of this was that towns with lower stakes are hard. When I bring Dogs to my little group, I'm starting with the big stuff -- demons and sorcerers -- then moving on the really subtle stuff that highlights tough moral questions.


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: ptikachu on September 18, 2005, 10:57:08 PM
I've written - but have not had a chance to run - several towns with lower stakes, which really appeals to me for some reason. 

http://www.meekmok.com/sassy/dogs/resources.html

Wahanish and Liberty are both pretty bucolic.

--Jason
I do want to run that Fourth of July town with the Faithful cheating to win one of these days. It strikes me as a nice change of pace from players expecting demons and hellfire all the time.


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: rrr on September 19, 2005, 12:48:18 AM

- Is our dead friend a hero or a rapist?


Heh.  That was me...

But anyway, I'm wondering if the fact that lower stakes conflicts seem rarer is because perhaps the GM is less invested in their outcome?  So in effect they "say yes" rather than "roll the dice".

Perhaps the system is set up so that unless you are specifically looking to have low stakes conflicts, they're kind of not going to just happen organically?

Drew 


Title: Re: The Devil is in the Details
Post by: Larry L. on September 19, 2005, 04:00:25 AM
But then, someone offered them lemonade... best lemonade they'd ever had.  They took it as an attempt to bribe them in their official duties.  Which it was, but just in the friendly "Let me be nice to you so you're nice to me" way that everyone does anyway.  Damn near shot the woman over that lemonade.

(snort!)