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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 98 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Primetime Adventures: Epidemonology  (Read 37852 times)
hanschristianandersen
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« Reply #15 on: October 05, 2004, 09:29:50 AM »

Hmm, maybe you could call it "Second Horseman".  Like as in the Second Horseman of the Apocalypse.

Jumping back a few tangents, though -
Quote from: Vincent
Yes! Several times I had to stop myself from rolling like you would in Dogs - the very instant that something might even possibly be at stake. I was like, "okay, let's roll dice! Yet there's not enough information yet! Vincent to brain. Brain? Come in brain..."


Hey Vincent, having just played Dogs, I was really interested in that observation.  Would you mind calling out one or two conflicts from your game that demonstrate how to do it "right" in PTA?
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Hans Christian Andersen V.
Yes, that's my name.  No relation.
Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #16 on: October 06, 2004, 06:53:17 AM »

Quote from: Paul Czege
We had a PTA setup conversation last night, and what we're doing is a drama about astronauts and their families during the Apollo missions of the 1960s. The network executives are probably in favor of titling it Canaveral.l


I think Canaveral is a show about a bunch of bike cops on the boardwalk around Cape Canaveral. There are lots of bikinis.

Or maybe they're surf cops. Yeah, surf cops who guard the big water tank under the rocket engines!
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the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #17 on: October 06, 2004, 08:48:44 AM »

Quote from: lumpley
Oh! Like one of us - I forget which - did at the beginning of the session proper, I want to point out: all the players are playing cross-gender. Worthy of going "huh."


How's about this: with three Protagonists being played by women and one by a man, the three women all see the available powerful roles (given the 1940s environment) as being in the hands of men. I wanted to play Vicky because she's a journalistic Rosie the Riveter and First-Wave Feminist.

So I would suspect that we're all playing cross-gender because there's a lot of gender conflict to be had.

We loves the conflict!

No one's Black, at least not yet. We'll see where things go.
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the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
lumpley
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« Reply #18 on: October 06, 2004, 09:38:36 AM »

Quote from: Hans
Would you mind calling out one or two conflicts from your game that demonstrate how to do it "right" in PTA?

I'm not sure I'm the guy for the job, being the GM and all. J, any thoughts? Em?

-Vincent
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Emily Care
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« Reply #19 on: October 06, 2004, 11:09:44 AM »

Quote from: Hans
Would you mind calling out one or two conflicts from your game that demonstrate how to do it "right" in PTA?

Did Carrie have to roll to see if Joe tossed his cookies? If so, that was just right--Cyrus wanted to get everyone out of the room so he could check out the bodies, Joe was looking a little squeamish, so Cyrus starts asking Joe all kinds of graphic questions and showing him the bodies. Dice are rolled. Success. Joe yarfs on the attendant.  We must have rolled for that, right? If not, we lost an opportunity.

I know we did for the sister conflict that came later. When Joe had to pull the dead body off the meat-hooks. The conflict was also to see whether Joe could hold it together, and this time he did.  

We had a discussion at some point about whether it  was task or conflict resolution.  My recollection is that it varied. But the most important aspect of PTA conflicts is the fan mail.  Time after time, a flurry of dice were put in by the other players, usually supporting the player whose character was involved.  Once I recall, no one added anything, which I thought was interesting in its own self.  

In Dogs, the dice need to be rolled prior to description of the whys and wherefores of a conflict. Save that for your raises and sees. In PTA it felt right to have been able to set it up properly in character, then let fly with the dice, calling in the opinion of everyone else.

There's no reason why we couldn't have just made it all up without the dice. Except, of course, that its more fun this way.

--Em
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Koti ei ole koti ilman saunaa.

Black & Green Games
Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #20 on: October 06, 2004, 11:46:52 AM »

Quote from: Emily Care
Did Carrie have to roll to see if Joe tossed his cookies? If so, that was just right--Cyrus wanted to get everyone out of the room so he could check out the bodies, Joe was looking a little squeamish, so Cyrus starts asking Joe all kinds of graphic questions and showing him the bodies. Dice are rolled. Success. Joe yarfs on the attendant.  We must have rolled for that, right? If not, we lost an opportunity.


Yeah, if I recall, though, the conflict was "do you get the squares out of the room?" and Carrie gave her dice to you.

I know we did for the sister conflict that came later. When Joe had to pull the dead body off the meat-hooks. The conflict was also to see whether Joe could hold it together, and this time he did.  

We had a discussion at some point about whether it  was task or conflict resolution.  My recollection is that it varied. But the most important aspect of PTA conflicts is the fan mail.  Time after time, a flurry of dice were put in by the other players, usually supporting the player whose character was involved.  Once I recall, no one added anything, which I thought was interesting in its own self.  

Yeah. It's a challenge to use up that budget, for sure, but it seems to me that the key to the game is moving that fan mail around a lot and using your traits. We'll have to see how it goes, but I suspect the fan mail is more important than Traits, statistically, and we might want to conisider that aspect of the game and how it conveys the story.

Quote
There's no reason why we couldn't have just made it all up without the dice. Except, of course, that its more fun this way.


And fun it is! You know, I'm not sure the dice matter that much. The fan mail matters a lot and I think the dice are purely there to make it a little less deterministic than budget - vs - (fanmail + traits).
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the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
Matt Wilson
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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« Reply #21 on: October 06, 2004, 12:04:05 PM »

Quote
You know, I'm not sure the dice matter that much. The fan mail matters a lot and I think the dice are purely there to make it a little less deterministic than budget - vs - (fanmail + traits).


Among other things, the dice represent the audience perspective. As players of the game, you're not just writers and directors (and maybe actors), you're also the audience. And part of the fun of being the audience is not being sure what's going to happen. If you're watching a show that you really love, you know the story's going to be good no matter how it goes, but there's some fun in being surprised.

As for the rolls, I'd call 'em conflict resolution. Ideally, no matter how the dice land, there's something to say that propels the story forward.
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Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #22 on: October 06, 2004, 01:11:50 PM »

Quote from: Matt Wilson
Quote
You know, I'm not sure the dice matter that much. The fan mail matters a lot and I think the dice are purely there to make it a little less deterministic than budget - vs - (fanmail + traits).


Among other things, the dice represent the audience perspective. As players of the game, you're not just writers and directors (and maybe actors), you're also the audience. And part of the fun of being the audience is not being sure what's going to happen. If you're watching a show that you really love, you know the story's going to be good no matter how it goes, but there's some fun in being surprised.


Yeah, sure, I see that, but right now they feel kinda awkward. Like V pointed out, it's hard to sort evens and odds. Pip dice seem like an OK way to do it, with the caveat that there will be more ties than with d10s, and therefore, calling the next scene will be a little more confusing.

You didn't answer my question above, though: if you're using d10s instead of d2s and choosing the highest number(s), the probability curve should be the same, but the high roll will always be the person who won the conflict, which isn't the case with the rules.

In fact, the d10ness of the roll is only there to determine who calls the next scene (and therefore, it's budget vs. fanmail, traits, and assistance from other players), but the d2ness of it determines who wins the conflict.

I'm really just trying to get this straight in my head because I was having a hard time seeing what was going on with the dice last weekend. Everything went very, very smoothly, but the dice made the timing stutter.

Quote
As for the rolls, I'd call 'em conflict resolution. Ideally, no matter how the dice land, there's something to say that propels the story forward.


Yeah, I like that a lot. I like how much everyone's on the same side, and that, win or lose, what happens next is good for the story, and therefore good for all players, Producer included.
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the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
lumpley
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« Reply #23 on: October 06, 2004, 01:18:56 PM »

High die doesn't call for the next scene, but narrates the outcome of the roll. We actually played "narrates the outcome" to mean "gives the outcome final approval," with all narrations handled by the group. Which I remember saying, but I'm not surprised it didn't stick in your (or probably anybody's) head. "Group narrates, one person approves" is a very natural, unobtrusive way to play.

I'm not even sure that you, J, ever got to approve narration. The one or two conflicts Vicky was in, I might well have had the high die.

-Vincent
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Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #24 on: October 06, 2004, 02:59:48 PM »

Quote from: lumpley
High die doesn't call for the next scene, but narrates the outcome of the roll. We actually played "narrates the outcome" to mean "gives the outcome final approval," with all narrations handled by the group. Which I remember saying, but I'm not surprised it didn't stick in your (or probably anybody's) head. "Group narrates, one person approves" is a very natural, unobtrusive way to play.


Well, I guess it's unobtrusive. I obviously don't remember it well.

Quote
I'm not even sure that you, J, ever got to approve narration. The one or two conflicts Vicky was in, I might well have had the high die.t


Nah, but I was so excited about the way the game was going, I was chuckin' stuff in all the time anyway.
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the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
lumpley
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« Reply #25 on: October 07, 2004, 05:37:57 AM »

Exactly!

What you didn't spot is me watching for "nah..." cues when Carrie or Emily had the high die. That's all there was to it.

-Vincent
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Matt Wilson
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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« Reply #26 on: October 07, 2004, 06:05:40 AM »

That sort of "quiet veto power" thing is an interesting way to handle the high-die narration rights. Did you interpret it that way in the text, or are you adjusting it a bit to accomodate your group's style. Am I understanding it right that the "narrator" as determined by the high roll isn't necessarily the one in your group that's doing the talking?

For those watching at home, the default method, the way I imagine it, is that the "high-die guy" has the floor, and gets to do the talking, and the other people can make suggestive outbursts that he or she can accept or refuse as desired.
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lumpley
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« Reply #27 on: October 07, 2004, 07:21:28 AM »

Well let's see.

First of all this is a new group, we don't really have a style yet. But I chose to enact the narration rules this way on purpose, because that's what I wanted for our style. For what it's worth I don't think you'd'a found it shocking: there was never a time when the high die guy didn't talk, for instance. But we didn't do any formal "now ___ has the floor, now I do" procedural stuff.

I think that "who's saying yay-or-nay" is more important to a game dynamic - any game dynamic - than "who's talking," and I've thought so pretty much since I playtested Otherkind that one time and it was hard and uncomfy.

Moose in the City was the same way - all talking all the time, with veto rights passing to the high die guy.

-Vincent
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Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #28 on: October 07, 2004, 08:06:24 AM »

Huh. Look at that. That's some pretty good GMin'.
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the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
Meguey
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Meguey


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« Reply #29 on: October 10, 2004, 10:03:47 AM »

Ok, the game is great, and I'm thrilled to be playing with Carrie &  everyone else. But especially Carrie, since she's been a huge 'potential gamer' in my head for a year.

My in-sights: I really liked the freedom this game gives players to describe and edit sceens. I was able to really get in there and tell the sceen in the diner where Frank and Cyrus are chatting the way I saw it in my head. One thing I really like is how the framework of 'tv show' lets me overtly bring in and name things like camera angle and lighting and such that would not only not work for many other games, it would clearly break the feeling of the game.

I love the fan-mail economy, because it really rewards good play, good ideas, and nurtures good agreement between players, and that's cool. The scene-setting was great for me, because I often feel a bit like I'm in a black-box stage when playing, because the setting has not been set. I'm already looking forward to the next series of PTA, to see if the settings hold up as well.

I got very little screen-time, but felt like I had pivitally important sceens. I felt free to say 'ok, this is the sceen where I do the exposition thing, and the audience gets that we're old friends, I dated his wife in high school, and that she's now dead, and that Cyrus has done this sort of investigating as a semi-hobby for a while.' That left us free to cut to the good bits, where Cyrus shows Frank the crime-sceen photos (in black and white to Frank, camera changes to Cyrus POV, and there's color all over them, thus illustrating the point of the color earlier), and we realize that there's way too much blood fro the minor scrapes on the strangled youths. I even got fan-mail for my timing on saying "Then who's blood is it?" and the scene cut to Joe and Ernie and one of them saying "I don't know." which was just great. I am looking forward to seeing our supporting cast ideas come forward much more next session.

Speaking of sessions, the method of determining screen-time is brilliant, and makes everyone fully engadged in the current episode, knowing they are not key, knowing their turn will come.

I do have to respond to Joshua though:
 
Quote
How's about this: with three Protagonists being played by women and one by a man, the three women all see the available powerful roles (given the 1940s environment) as being in the hands of men. I wanted to play Vicky because she's a journalistic Rosie the Riveter and First-Wave Feminist.


Um, I looked for what character I wanted to play, and then what gender it was. I wanted to play someone that would be tied into the political situation at the time, to increase the feeling of setting, and being a part of 'the good war' seemed perfect. Yet I wanted to be around, so I couldn't be on active duty. Being injured in duty and ok with that seemed especially cool, and when I put all the pieces together, that character was male.  Emily originally envisioned a Sherlock Holmes guy, and the character was male from the begining. I don't know what Carrie's process was. I don't think I was at all looking at the power positions and going for the male ones.

Another strong possibility for me was the Black woman blues/torch singer, with interesting connections that would have included some clan stuff and some early civil rights stuff. But that's a different show; I wanted to be able to freely focus on the demons as disease, not on the 'demons' of society. (I think sometimes that can be a problem with any work - knowing where the story is and not trying to tell more than the story at hand) Noone's playing a closeted homosexual (that we know of) or a political activist or a migrant farm worker, either.

And J, that photo's not exactly a candidate for reduction surgery. Remember the clothes of the era, the tailoring, and the way underwear was built, and rethink that angle. Or, just be really clear that Vickie being really painfully chesty is part of the character, and not just a stereotype you're falling into.

~Meguey
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