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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 77 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: [UtB] Sell me, dude  (Read 16320 times)
Jason Morningstar
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« on: August 31, 2005, 05:12:34 AM »

So ... Under the Bed gets a lot of buzz, and a lot of people I respect rave about it.  There are neat UtB ads in the back of cool new games I got at Gen Con.  But beyond a paragraph of ad copy, I have no idea what it is about, or how it works, or if it would be fun for me.  Your Web site doesn't help. 

So what's the deal?  What's the single coolest thing about it?  Sell me on your game!

Thanks,

Jason
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Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2005, 08:48:54 AM »

Geez, what is this, GenCon? ;>

It's a game about toys defending their children from the things children fear. The game assumes that children are afraid because things can hurt them. Things like monsters, bullies, and abusive parents.

What I like most about the game is that players universally bring their own greatest fears to the table and play with them.

The mechanics of the game favor tragedy, and success is almost always bittersweet.

What else can I tell you? What gets you jazzed?
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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.
Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2005, 09:40:22 AM »

Hey thanks, I didn't mean my question in a bellicose way.  I'm genuinely curious.  UtB sounds like a very intense experience.  Does play take place through a lens of magical realism?  Can your toy directly confront a bully?  Are the fears always well founded?  Are there actual play posts somewhere?  Thanks,

--Jason
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GreatWolf
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« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2005, 10:13:59 AM »

Also, I'm curious how Under the Bed compares and contrasts with Little Fears, assuming that you are familiar with the latter work.
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Seth Ben-Ezra
Dark Omen Games
producing Legends of Alyria, Dirty Secrets, A Flower for Mara
coming soon: Showdown
Eric Provost
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« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2005, 10:51:31 AM »

Lisa and I were fortunate enough to get a playtest of UtB.  We loved it. 

Quote
What I like most about the game is that players universally bring their own greatest fears to the table and play with them.

When I first read that line I felt skeptical about it's validity.  But almost immediately I realized it was totally true.  In our short play our child came up against bullies, being lost, and security guards.  Easily three of the top things that scared me when I was that tall.  Stunning stuff.

I expect to get a copy soon.  I want to use it to introduce some people to gaming that has no geekdom.  The only reason why we didn't pick it up thirty seconds after we playtested it was the pricetag to prettyness ratio.

-Eric
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Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2005, 02:36:12 PM »

Also, I'm curious how Under the Bed compares and contrasts with Little Fears, assuming that you are familiar with the latter work.

I'm familiar with it, but I don't really want to comment on it. Suffice to say that they're very different games, about different things. Buy Little Fears, too!
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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 #6 on: August 31, 2005, 02:51:11 PM »

Lisa and I were fortunate enough to get a playtest of UtB.  We loved it.

Glad to hear it!

Quote
Quote
What I like most about the game is that players universally bring their own greatest fears to the table and play with them.

When I first read that line I felt skeptical about it's validity.  But almost immediately I realized it was totally true.  In our short play our child came up against bullies, being lost, and security guards.  Easily three of the top things that scared me when I was that tall.  Stunning stuff.

It's even more true when you're playing with your friends, whom you trust. When playing at the con, I was amazed by how willing people were to open up and tell me what scared them when they were little, but when I play with my friends, their active, adult fears come up, as well.

Quote
I expect to get a copy soon.  I want to use it to introduce some people to gaming that has no geekdom.  The only reason why we didn't pick it up thirty seconds after we playtested it was the pricetag to prettyness ratio.
Quote

Yeah, part of the experiment of Under The Bed was to see how much I could sell it on game content alone. I'm a graphic designer and know very well how a book design sells a game - I did both Mountain Witch and Dogs in the Vineyard - but I was being deliberately low-budget on UTB.
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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.
GreatWolf
Member

Posts: 1155

designer of Dirty Secrets


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« Reply #7 on: August 31, 2005, 09:42:20 PM »

I'm familiar with it, but I don't really want to comment on it. Suffice to say that they're very different games, about different things. Buy Little Fears, too!

Uh, let me be a little clearer.  I own Little Fears.  In fact, I did some of the writing for it.  So, I'm fairly familiar with LF.  However, the sum total of my understanding of Under the Bed is the ad in the back of Polaris and the fact that I happened to spend about 45 seconds touching Ralph's copy.  (Just got back from his house.)  When I saw the ad in Polaris, I thought, "Huh.  Someone else is taking a run at doing Little Fears again."  I'm not looking for you to diss LF to pump up your game; rather, I want you to disabuse me of my first impression.  Apparently you see the two games as being very different; I'd like to share your understanding.

Can you help me out?  Please?

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Seth Ben-Ezra
Dark Omen Games
producing Legends of Alyria, Dirty Secrets, A Flower for Mara
coming soon: Showdown
Ben Lehman
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Blissed


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« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2005, 12:50:37 AM »

Uhm... so I'm not Joshua.

Don't take anything I say to be his opinion or an official statement from glyphpress.  I'm no more than a big fan of Under the Bed who has also read Little Fears.

Little Fears, in short, is a horror game.  The fear and the center of the game comes from great big supernatural bogies from beyond space and time.  If real people do bad things, it is ultimately linked back to the big supernatural bogies.  These bogies are the central conflict of the game.

Under the Bed is not a horror game.  It is a game about real life.  While the players can introduce genre elements (fantasy, horror, ghost story, whatever), these serve as emotional buffers against the central conflict of the game which is, quite simply, whatever real childhood troubles the players bring to the table.

yrs--
--Ben
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GreatWolf
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designer of Dirty Secrets


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« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2005, 05:12:34 AM »

Ah, that seems to make sense.  So the default setting of Under the Bed is "the real world", not "the real world plus Closetland".

That helps a lot.  Thanks!
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Seth Ben-Ezra
Dark Omen Games
producing Legends of Alyria, Dirty Secrets, A Flower for Mara
coming soon: Showdown
Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2005, 06:46:01 AM »

Thanks, Ben.

Seth, the default setting is fairly fantastical. Talking toys, monsters, and the like. The way the game deals with them, though, assumes that they represent real things that you experience and particularly things you experienced as a child.

Many fun and tense games I've played in have had fantastic elements - talking swamps, Messerschmidt dragons, and walking around in train set towns - but those are the medium, not the message.

So, yeah, I read Little Fears, but I didn't find it to really approach the subject I was after, though it had amazingly similar color. For what it's worth, I was already working on UtB when I first came across Little Fears, and knew what I wanted to confront and how.
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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.
GreatWolf
Member

Posts: 1155

designer of Dirty Secrets


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« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2005, 07:07:41 AM »

Thanks, Joshua.  That helps explain a lot.

By the way, while I did not have the chance to look over the rules at Ralph's yesterday, I thought that the format was particularly interesting.  It's not everyday that you see an RPG that could be packaged as a card game.

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Seth Ben-Ezra
Dark Omen Games
producing Legends of Alyria, Dirty Secrets, A Flower for Mara
coming soon: Showdown
Joshua A.C. Newman
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« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2005, 08:16:15 AM »

Thanks, Joshua.  That helps explain a lot.

Great. If you have a chance to play, particularly with close friends, I'd really appreciate an AP report.

Quote
By the way, while I did not have the chance to look over the rules at Ralph's yesterday, I thought that the format was particularly interesting.  It's not everyday that you see an RPG that could be packaged as a card game.

It's true, and while it probably doesn't hurt internet sales that it's that format, I'm pretty sure I lost shelf sales at GenCon because it's so small.

Shock will come it two sizes: regule (6 x 9 or some such) and a pocket size. I like the idea that you can cram a game in your pocket. I sure wish that the game books I'd had as a kid didn't require backpacks to lug around.
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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.
MichaelCurry
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Posts: 12


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« Reply #13 on: September 06, 2005, 05:46:33 PM »

By the way, while I did not have the chance to look over the rules at Ralph's yesterday, I thought that the format was particularly interesting.  It's not everyday that you see an RPG that could be packaged as a card game.

It's true, and while it probably doesn't hurt internet sales that it's that format, I'm pretty sure I lost shelf sales at GenCon because it's so small.

Can you describe the format of UtB a bit more, for those of us who haven't seen a copy for ourselves?
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Michael Curry

My gaming blog: Flaming Monkey
Kirk Mitchell
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Posts: 268


« Reply #14 on: September 06, 2005, 06:06:18 PM »

I remember this game! Way back in its early development. I can't remember the name though... I got really excited over it (I wanted to play it with my old childhood stuffed animals and action figures, making them jump around the room and stuff). I guess its time to get excited again! Unless I'm really confused and am thinking of a totally different game, which would really suck because it looked cool. Also, I'd look like an ass, but I am an ass, so it doesn't really matter.

Either way, you've sold me.

Kirk
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