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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 180 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Escalation  (Read 2544 times)
rafial
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« on: September 29, 2004, 10:05:44 AM »

So I've got a rules clarification question prompted by Hans Christian Andersen's actual play report:

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Moving beyond that, watching a desperate opponent Escalate from Words to Guns, and beating him without escalating in turn, is astonishingly fulfilling.


This sounds very cool, but after reading it, something niggled at me and I went back and looked through the book.  And unfortunately I don't have it with me so I can't cite page numbers, but in the section I read it's pretty much laid out that if your opponent escalates, you must either give, or escalate yourself.

Is this correct, or am I reading more into the text than should be there?
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Brand_Robins
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« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2004, 10:35:50 AM »

While I'm sure Vincent will be along in a moment with an official answer, I do think I know where your confusion comes from. On page 37 it says "Now I get to decide if I'll Give or Escalate to match" -- giving the possible indication that when someone else excalates you have to do so as well.

However, I don't think that this was supposed to be the rule. In the example at hand the GMC had only 1s left in his pool, and so could not have matched the new escalated raise -- even by taking the blow. He either had to eat it or escalate in turn.

So I always felt that escalation was a choice, and that you could continue without it even when someone else did it. (Elsewise you'd never get the cool scenes where you calmly talk down the deseperate man with a gun.)
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- Brand Robins
rafial
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« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2004, 11:50:58 PM »

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However, I don't think that this was supposed to be the rule. In the example at hand the GMC had only 1s left in his pool, and so could not have matched the new escalated raise -- even by taking the blow. He either had to eat it or escalate in turn.


Now that I have the book in hand again, I can confirm you got the page reference right for the text I originally read.  Looking further, I think that the example on page 38 seems to support your theory.  "I/Me" escalates, but there is no mention of "You" before forced to escalate as well.

Incidently in paragraph six, I assume that "You" is using the just rolled 8 to See and Reverse the Blow even though that step is skipped over in the text (it just jumps from Raise to Raise).

I also find it illuminating in that example that the type of fallout dice is determined by the narrated action, not by the current level of escalation.  So you could actually have a conflict that goes from words to blows to shots and back to words before it ends, if that's how both sides want to play it.

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Elsewise you'd never get the cool scenes where you calmly talk down the deseperate man with a gun.


True enough, although in my opinion just pulling out a gun and waving it around and threatening to use it isn't escalation, it's still just words.  It's when somebody pulls a trigger with intent that I think escalation happens.
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Valamir
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« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2004, 05:17:24 AM »

Actually I think drawing the weapon is the escalating act.  Actually shooting someone would happen with a raise after such escalation narrated as such.  Although the raise could still be described as verbal...just verbal where one's words are being emphasised by Sam Colt.

I LOVE the escalation rules.  They were the first part of the game that made me say "wow".

They are absolutely perfect for even more general western genres.  It would be so easy to use this system to power the classic gun play scene where some one insults the gunfighter with words and the gunfighter has to decide whether to eat it and take the fallout from the taunt, or escalate to gunplay.  

Every now and then a mechanic comes along that I REALLY wish I had invented.  This one has rocketed to the top of that list for me.
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rafial
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« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2004, 08:29:22 AM »

Quote from: Valamir
Actually I think drawing the weapon is the escalating act.


I'll clarify why I disagree.  As I understand the example on page 38, if I wave a gun around and rant as my raise, and one of my opponents is forced to Take the Blow from that rant, it's still only d4 fallout dice, because the blow was words, not bullets.  It doesn't seem to me you should get the dice for escalating until you do something that risks handing out d10 fallout (i.e. shoot somebody).

And I agree.  Escalation is a marvelous mechanic.
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lumpley
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« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2004, 08:48:10 AM »

You get dice for the gun as a Belonging when you incorporate it into a Raise or See - by drawing it and waving it around to emphasize your point, by firing it in the air, by firing it at someone, whatever.

You get dice for Escalating to gunfighting when you shoot at someone.

(Or when you physically react to someone else shooting at you - ducking behind cover is a perfectly valid Escalating See.)

-Vincent
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