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Author Topic: international romance  (Read 11013 times)
Emily Care
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« on: October 27, 2005, 07:36:33 AM »

Hey there,

From the orders I'm getting, looks like lots of folks in Europe are discovering Breaking the Ice.  I'm sure Ben & Eero's trek across Finland for the Polaris tour may be responsible, as well as the attentiveness of folks in the EU to innovative role playing found here, at rpg.net and elsewhere. 

I'm thinking of this because there's some more actual play of Breaking the Ice on the Mandragon role playing forums from the Netherlands.  Apparently someone is using BtI to flesh out how a pair of characters in their Nobilis personages--though it's not quite clear from the Babelfish translation I got.  (If  anybody knows a better online translation site, I'd love to hear about it.) 

Remko responds in the thread, so maybe he can enlighten us more if he's about.

[Breaking the Ice]Sfeer scheppen (creates environment)
http://www.mandragon.be/rpgs/blund/9138.topic

I remember hearing about an influential EU or UK gaming news site, but haven't been able to find it again. If anyone has a site or sites to recommend, please do.

best,
Emily
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Koti ei ole koti ilman saunaa.

Black & Green Games
Frank T
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« Reply #1 on: October 27, 2005, 07:49:08 AM »

Nice to hear! I hope there are a few orders from Germany as well, and I hope furthermore that these GroFaFo actual play threads might have promoted the game:

http://grofafo.org/index.php?topic=21233.0
http://grofafo.org/index.php?topic=22298.0

Also, there was a general thread about BtI a little further back:

http://grofafo.org/index.php?topic=20668.0

Not that I'm showing off or something. ;o)

- Frank
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Frank T
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« Reply #2 on: October 27, 2005, 07:52:16 AM »

Oh, not to forget Jasper's wonderful "Roleplaying and Real Emotion" which turned quickly into a discussion about BtI:

http://grofafo.org/index.php?topic=20666.0
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Blankshield
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Posts: 407


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« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2005, 09:01:32 AM »

Isn't it totally cool to get an order for your game from overseas?

I was totally knocked for a loop when I got an order from Finland.  I was giddy all day. :)

I also think I need to reorder BTI; my set-free copy still hasn't come home.

James
(now all I need is some AP reports...)
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I write games. My games don't have much in common with each other, except that I wrote them.

http://www.blankshieldpress.com/
Arturo G.
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Posts: 333


« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2005, 09:31:50 AM »


I already ordered BtI. I'm waiting for it with expectation.

But I'm having the feeling that there is no more spanish people around here. In fact I have not been able to find any spanish web-site or people talking about Forge's indie-games in general :-(
I'm trying to promote them among my friends, not only those living in my city. But it will  take time.

Emily, do you have any other orders from Spain? There should be someone out there! (I'm already registered in FindPlay with no success).

Cheers,
Arturo
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Emily Care
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« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2005, 10:16:16 AM »

Thanks, Frank.  I hadn't seen those!  I'm pretty sure I have sold more to people in Germany, my thanks to you.  :)  And James, yes, it is just amazing.  I like Matt's map of where in the world folks have bought PtA. It would be fun to do that someday.

I was impressed with the pair of characters one of which was part of Green Youth (environmental activists, I take it?) and the other worked for Living  Waters, a Christian organization that tries to reform homosexuals... what intense situations to deal with.  As I read it, I felt like the idea of "dates" might have been constraining the players somewhat--meeting at a restaurant eschews a lot of the amazing conflict ridden situations they could get into.  But it seemed like they explored this as time went on--at night in a bird sanctuary in the second date. 

Arturo:  I've got the receipt for shipping your copy in my pocket still! It went out on the 20th, so should get to you soon.  I will check to see if anyone else from Spain ordered it. Call me a matchmaker. : )  Frank & others have had good success playing it IRC, too, which might be something you could try. 

best to ya,
Em
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Black & Green Games
matthijs
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Posts: 462


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« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2005, 11:07:49 AM »

Well, since I'm half dutch... here's a very quick and dirty translation.

____________________

The idea for this chat RPG started something like this:

"What if we use BtI to work out the relationships between Nobilis characters?"
"Nah, takes too long. That won't work."
"OK, what about characters for Dogma XP?"

What? Three dates between two characters.
Where? A multiverse roughly based on Planescape where Dogmas have taken the place of ideas.

Who?

Jason Alkwär
Faction: Doom guard; the end is inevitable, but beauty is in impermanence.
Work: CEO. Worms his way into power through a multitude of tricks.
Hobbies: Climbing high trees.
Pets: Erin, an imaginary chameleon.
Clothing style: Very horribly incredibly boring.

Svetlana Fero
Faction: ...of the Well; every man can be a God. By living a good life you end up in progressively better incarnations.
Work: Linguist. Not a very good one, who doesn't care too much about scientific sources.
Hobbies: Rustball fan. Yoga and stretching exercises.
Skin color: Sometimes she's grey. Very Romero-zombie-grey, when she loses her self control.

Mini-overview (?)

The transcript of the game will follow later, so far only the first date has been played out.

Some comments:
- The game works very well by personal messenger. Especially without annoying MSN interface.
- I thought I understood the rules pretty well before we started... well, I was wrong. But you get used to them pretty fast, all in all.
- Before play, the game seemed to have too much potential for silly humor. In the end that... eh... didn't turn out that way.
- The rule that says 'do something stupid and get a re-roll' is damned annoying. Especially if you fail every re-roll in the game. With Jason it all went from bad to worse.

High points first date:
- Jason, certain that he can make a point about "decaying beauty" wrt trees, calls on the tree spirit/restaurant owner to praise her (schorsen?) beauty. Very obviously. Svetlana and the rest of the restaurant aren't really amused.
- Svetlana tries to make an impression with her eloquence, by speaking to a market salesman from another sphere in his own language. Not only is he more of a linguist than she is, he really rubs her nose in it. But instead of being deeply insulted she buys a linguistic book from him that is an obvious fake.
- Svetlana later accuses Jason that he's arrogant. Cold shower. The metaphor becomes reality as an old woman throws out a bucket of water from a window above, hitting Jason. His chameleon is whisked away and the following search leads Jason to the hospital in the end.

(Imaginary chameleons are so well-camouflaged that you only think you can see them).


_________________

[Reply about the re-roll rule in question]

Exactly that rule is the brilliant thing about Breaking the Ice. It recreates that exact feeling you have when a date seems about to fail: you desperately look for a way of making an impression, which (with a bad roll) indeed ends up making things worse.

NB: Sometimes it can be even more frustrating to come up with a way, when the other player is shown in a bad light, for your character to see that as something positive...
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JasperN.
Member

Posts: 41


« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2005, 01:29:49 PM »

Hi Emily,

I was part of that "living waters/green youth" - game. I think by now the second and third date are online, so you can go and see for yourself that we ventured into some pretty heavy stuff later on...My partner's English is not that well, though I might translate the play report some time. And I still owe you pt. 3 of the Andersen game...

I also managed to place a small article with a big magazine (big in Germany, that is.Intro magazine is a large pop-culture magazine, think ID/Wired/Rolling Stone drifted to alternative) on indie - roleplaying and The Forge, which specifically mentions BtI...might get you a few more orders from Germany. Though the Intro - kids are probably still too kewl for RPGs, in spite of my article, I assume. I was suprised they accepted it, anyway.
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Remko
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 76


« Reply #8 on: October 28, 2005, 03:05:13 AM »

Hey there,

From the orders I'm getting, looks like lots of folks in Europe are discovering Breaking the Ice.  I'm sure Ben & Eero's trek across Finland for the Polaris tour may be responsible, as well as the attentiveness of folks in the EU to innovative role playing found here, at rpg.net and elsewhere. 

I'm thinking of this because there's some more actual play of Breaking the Ice on the Mandragon role playing forums from the Netherlands.  Apparently someone is using BtI to flesh out how a pair of characters in their Nobilis personages--though it's not quite clear from the Babelfish translation I got.  (If  anybody knows a better online translation site, I'd love to hear about it.) 
Well, Most of the time I use Worldlingo. But you should check out this site, where multiple translation sites are compared.

Just as a little thing of knowledge, Mandragon is a roleplaying forum from Belgium, but in the Flanders, Belgium, people also speak a dialect of Dutch. Actually, In the Flanders, people speak Dutch, French and German, because those are their neighboring countries.

I honestly guess that the interest in our language region is indeed coming from guys on the Forge, like VictorGijsbers. Hopefully, Jeroen will be the one spreading it with our southern neighbours Belgium :).
Quote
Remko responds in the thread, so maybe he can enlighten us more if he's about.

Well, ok, allow me to enlighten you.

First, let me explain what it said.

Quote
Het idee voor deze chat-RPG begon ongeveer zo:

"Wat als we BtI gebruiken voor de relaties tussen Nobilis-personages uit te werken?"
"Nah, zijn we al te lang mee bezig. Dat gaat niet werken."
"Ok, wat dan met personages voor Dogma XP?"

Wat? Drie dates tussen twee personages.
Waar? Een Multiversum ruwweg gebaseerd op Planescape waar Dogma's de plaats hebben ingenomen van ideeën.

Translation:
It all started like this:

Jeroen: "What if we would use BtI to flesh out the relationships of our Nobilis-characters?"
Remko:"Nah, we've played with them too long already. It isn't gonna work out."
Jeroen:"Ok, what about for characters of Dogma XP?"

What? three dates between two characters.
Where? A multi-planed universum, roughly based on Planescape, where dogmas took the spot of ideas.

Ok, now for some explaination:
Nobilis is our ongoing, online RPG, also taking place on Mandragon. It's a narrravistic version of Nobilis and fairly freeform. All the characters developed a personal conflict, with which they had to deal with in the future. Jeroen, our Hollyhock God for Nobilis, is developing a new online RPG, named Dogma XP, which is roughly based on the D&D setting Planescape.

As I didn't have my BtI book yet, I've used the same rules as I used with Victor when playing The Ordeals of Love.

Genre
Slapstick humoured. Originally, I wanted it to be a bit more serious, also because I thought the game I played with Victor was really great, but Jeroen wanted a more 'light'-version, so we went for that.

Characters
Jason Alkwär
Faction: Doomguard: 'the ending of the world' cannot be stopped, but the beauty lies within decadence.
Work: Manager. Tries to get into a higher position with slimy tricks.
Play: Climbing high trees.
Play: Pet: Erin, an inmagined chameleon. (An inmagined chameleon is one which is so greatly camouflaged that one can only think one sees him)
Self: Dresses unbelievably boring.

Svetlana Fero
Faction: Believers of the source: Every human is capable of becoming a God. By living a good life, one reincarnates in a better form.
Work: Linguist. Not a very great one... one who doesn't take it too serious with her literary sources.
Play: Fan of rustball: an interplanar game in which persons have to hide the ball from the opponent in order to get it at their opponents play field at the end of the game. Pretty bloody, messy, also for the public, because they often have to engage in combat also.
Play: Yoga.
Self: When losing self control, her face transforms into a graylike colour, kind of an elephant colour.

Jeroen's opinion
- The game can be played pretty good using a personal messenger.
- I thought I understood the rules before we started... but, then again, I didn't. But they were pretty easy.
- Beforehand, the game seemed to have the possibility to be used for slapstick humour. In the end, that eh... wasn't really the fact. {opinion of Remko: it was pretty slapsticky, also because of Jeroen's self thought of chameleon}
- The rule that says: do something stupid, then you'll gain a reroll {Remko: in fact, that wasn't really the thing I said, but ok, it was slapsticky, so it went that way pretty much} is pretty frustrating, especially when every reroll is failing.

My reaction
Exactly that rule is the thing I like about Breaking the Ice. It really shows the feeling you get in when you would be in that situation yourself. When you try to do something extreme, and it fails, you get frustrated and you'll try even more.

I'll wait for Jeroen to describe the highlights.

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Remko van der Pluijm

Working on:
1. Soviet Soviet Politics, my November Ronnie
2. Sorcerer based on Mars Volta's concept album 'Deloused in the Comatorium'
Emily Care
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« Reply #9 on: October 28, 2005, 06:01:32 AM »

Quote
(Imaginary chameleons are so well-camouflaged that you only think you can see them).

I want one. Hey--I can have one. In fact, I do now. (hee-hee) I think I'll name it Jarvis.

Jasper: Thanks! I'll have to hunt down the magazine sometime.  I couldn't find Intro via google, could you post the site?

Quote from: Remko
Just as a little thing of knowledge, Mandragon is a roleplaying forum from Belgium, but in the Flanders, Belgium, people also speak a dialect of Dutch. Actually, In the Flanders, people speak Dutch, French and German, because those are their neighboring countries.
Belgium, check. Sorry!  I was going by the "netherlandstalige rpg-site" in the title bar.  Should have translated it. Thank you for the translation sites, too.

And thank you Matthijs & Remko for the translations. The difference in the last line was especially of interest to me:
Quote from: Remko
My reaction
Exactly that rule is the thing I like about Breaking the Ice. It really shows the feeling you get in when you would be in that situation yourself. When you try to do something extreme, and it fails, you get frustrated and you'll try even more.

Interpreting the outcome of a turn as a success or failure to fall more in love is one of those tricky things about the game. It was what I worked the longest with to try to find the right balance.

best,
Emily



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Black & Green Games
JasperN.
Member

Posts: 41


« Reply #10 on: October 30, 2005, 01:24:31 AM »

Here`s the Intro article:

http://www.intro.de/musik/magazin/1129559011
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Victor Gijsbers
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 390


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« Reply #11 on: October 30, 2005, 04:41:21 AM »

Good article, Jasper! It is good to see people combat the geek-ness of roleplaying games. (By the way, Dogs was written bij Vincent Baker, not by Brian Lumpley.)
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Matt Wilson
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 1121

student, second edition


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« Reply #12 on: October 30, 2005, 06:11:18 AM »

Yay international fame!

Now you are Emily Care "Huge in Flanders" Boss.
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JasperN.
Member

Posts: 41


« Reply #13 on: October 30, 2005, 06:59:55 AM »

Thanks, Emily. I´ve noticed the mistake myself, and Frank T. also spotted that one. I´m not sure how it got in there, though. My original draft has the right name in it. I´ll try and see whether they´ll run a correction. I wouldn´t want to rob Vincent Baker of his fame. Btw, do you speak German, or are you using a translation tool?
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Remko
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 76


« Reply #14 on: October 31, 2005, 04:15:02 AM »

Thanks, Emily. I´ve noticed the mistake myself, and Frank T. also spotted that one. I´m not sure how it got in there, though. My original draft has the right name in it. I´ll try and see whether they´ll run a correction. I wouldn´t want to rob Vincent Baker of his fame. Btw, do you speak German, or are you using a translation tool?


Really a great intro article, Jasper. My congratulations. This way, the dogma's introduced by Roleplaying stand-up comediants, like one of which I don't recall his name, but he was at Ratcon this year, perhaps are a bit thrown away. A bit off-topic, but I guess that people, not yet involved in RPG's, are really more into Indies (especially Nars)...
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Remko van der Pluijm

Working on:
1. Soviet Soviet Politics, my November Ronnie
2. Sorcerer based on Mars Volta's concept album 'Deloused in the Comatorium'
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