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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 61 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Three Rounds of The Pitch  (Read 856 times)
jburneko
Member

Posts: 1351


« on: February 06, 2002, 12:19:43 AM »

Hello,

Okay, so tonight my regular Tuesday night gaming group shows up and we're in the middle of the last part of the Freeport Trillogy for D&D3E.  Turns out that through a little creative manipulation of the rules they managed to completely bypass the last third of the scenario.  Oh well.

Anyway, we're sitting around talking and I tell them about The Pitch and suddenly they want to try it out.  Whoopee!  So, I go print out the rules.  Now mind you one of the players really IS a script writer and absolutely has gone through pitch sessions for real.  Another player is an actor who has heard many tales of pitch sessions.  So these guys are pros.

The game was an absolute BLAST!  But we found a few serious holes in the mechanics I thought I'd point out plus our solutions.

First of all, the point distribution mechanics at the beginning are wonky.  One guy did this:

Actors 0
Props 15
Location 15
Special Effects -10

Basically anytime a prop or a location was mentioned he'd jump in, claim all the chips, change the element and let the person in control of the pitch just keep rolling.  So, we basically just droped the negative rule and said distribute 20 points, no score can be 0.  Seemed to work okay.

The second problem is that there isn't enough incentive to assume control of the pitch.  It's WAY more advantageous just to let one person ramble on, jump in to change an element, bid, if you win, keep the chips and let the person keep going.  Our fix was to say you only had to return half the chips to assume control of the pitch instead of all of them.  That helped but it really didn't seem to be enough.  There wasn't much of a struggle to assume actual control of the pitch, just change the elements.

Also there was some confusion on just how the central mechanic works at this point:

Okay A, B and C are all playing.  A is in control of the pitch.  So, A suggests a Prop.  B and C contest the suggestion and draw a chip and roll.  What exactly does A do?

In our case we assume that A ALSO draws a chip and rolls.  But then we said, what happens if A wins?  Not only does A get the chips but he ALSO retains control of the pitch?  We just played this way.  It doesn't seem to hurt anything but seemed slightly unclear.

We also had one player who rarely wanted to change anything but simply wanted to build on an element.  So we added a rule where you could contest OR add to an element when it was introduced.  For example, if I said, "At this point there's an invasion by bug eyed monsters." then a player could draw a chip and roll on Props to add, "Armed with Laser Guns."  If the original pitcher or another player won they would have to add a Prop element to the bug eyed monsters.

Another thing we noticed is that there really is no reason what-so-ever to call for a script rewrite until the very end after all the chips were distributed. We just ended up having one more round of script rewrite bidding.  Nothing wrong with this but there were no shouts of, "Okay, we need to rewrite this thing." mid-game.

The biding/exchange rate of some actions seem really strange.  For example, the only reason to call for a script rewrite is to try and insert one of your quirks and maybe throw out a quirk of another player.  A quirk in the movie is worth 5 points.  This means that it is not advantageous to ever bid more than 4 chips on script rewrite because at 5 or more chips you're either gaining nothing or losing out.

This is similar to the rating vote at the end.  It is never advantageous to stuff the ballet with more than one extra vote.  Because one vote is bought with three chips but winning the vote is only worth 5 points.  So after the first additional vote, it's a losing venture anyway.

Finally, all the players agreed that there absolutely NEEDS to be a 'wrap up' rule since all three of out movies just died mid pitch when we ran out of tokens.  Kind of anticlimactic.

Despite all of this we had a hilareous time.  Everyone was really getting into it.

Just thought you might be interested in the feedback.

Jesse
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