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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 73 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: [Cutthroat]2nd and 3rd Playtest  (Read 1358 times)
Troy_Costisick
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Posts: 802


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« on: February 16, 2006, 05:47:15 PM »

Heya,

I got in a couple playtests over the last three weeks or so.  Wow, did I learn some important stuff.  I'll go over the in-game stuff briefly here then discuss my findings.  Word of warning, the first account is rather clinical, the second one I'm really pumped about.

{Playtest 2}
Players: Troy, Dave, Jeff, Mike. (same as first playtest)

Starting Stats:

Troy:8
Mike:7
Dave:6
Jeff:8

-Rally 1: We're all so close in Stats that no one issues a Challenge.  As all our GFs are needy, we go quickly to our first Raid.
=Raid1: Dave fails to get his GF a diamond, Mike Got $4k from a pawn shop and took his girl for a high speed run, Jeff Failed to get a Necklace but succeeded later in robbing a bank (his favorite thing) for $4k, I got my GF new shoes. 
-Rally2: I get the +1 bonus for Bragging and made a successful Challenge on Mike but failed an Approach on Dave.  Jeff gets past Dave's GF but fails his Challenge (-1 to Stat until next Rally). Mike fails Approach on Jeff and wins his Challenge on Dave (-1 until next Rally).  Dave Challenges Troy and wins.  Troy calls Raid, all join except Dave.

Stats:
Troy:9
Jeff:7 (8)
Dave:7
Mike:6 (7)

=Raid2: Mike gets his GF another high speed run and evades the Police (played by Dave) and gets $4k from an ATM he knocks over.  Jeff tries to Rob a bank and is wounded by Police (-1 Stat), he withdraws from Raid on next turn (Coward tag applied).  Troy gets GF more shoes and evades Police, later I rob a rich old man and take $4k from his wallet.
-Rally3: Mike wins Bragging and has his Stat restored (now he's at 8).  Troy successfully Challenges Dave and successfully Approaches Jeff.  Mike successfully Approaches Troy but fails Challenge of Troy (rolls a 2, heh).  Jeff fails his Approach on Dave but successfully Challenges Dave.  Dave successfully challenges Jeff (Domination switches).  Raid is called, all join except Jeff and Dave.

Stats:
Troy:9
Jeff:7 (8)
Dave:8
Mike:8

=Raid3: (cutting it short)- Mike buys a New Bike and Fulfills his GF's Desire, Troy fails to steal 4k and gets wounded but fulfills his GF's Desire,
-Rally4: Mike wins Bragging again (his stat is now 11 from Bragging and Bike).  Troy fails to Dominate Jeff (-1 to Stat until next Rally).  Mike Dominates Jeff.  Dave Dominates Troy.  Jeff fails to Dominate Dave (-1 to his Stat).  Raid is called, Troy and Dave sit it out.

Stats:
Troy:8 (9)
Jeff:7 (8)
Dave:9
Mike:11

=Raid4: Mike evades Police both at the Jewelry Store and at the Burger King (said he always wanted to rob that place).  Jeff gets wounded at the Bank (-1 to his Stat). 
-Rally5: Mike beats Jeff in Bragging (His stat is now 12).  Mike successfully Challenges Troy (Domination Switches) and Successfully Approaches Dave.  Jeff fails his Approach on Troy and Challenge on Mike.  Troy fails his Approach on Dave and fails his Challenge on Mike (stupid low rolls).  Dave fails his Challenge on Mike.  Mike is the winner!

My though is that because Mike went after his new Bike right away while the rest of us really didn't think about it, he was able to get a significant Stat advantage and won easily.  We all learned something from that.

{Playtest 3}
Mike and Dave were busy and a few of our other friends showed up just to say hi.  I figured I'd show them Cutthroat, but I wasn't expecting much.  These guys are dyed in the wool DnD players.  One of the guys (Nate) has all three Monster Manuals MEMORIZED!!! He can tell you every feat by heart in the Player Handbook, Complete Adventurer, and Complete Divine.  One of the other guys (Matt) is attending college to become a youth pastor.  "Him playing Cutthroat?" I thought, "Hmmm." So, needless to say, I was a little worried how they would react to it.

WHOA! I couldn't believe it!  They got right into the game, never ONCE questioned the fact that there's no levels, no GM, no XP.  They took to it like bees to honey.  They totally kicked my butt in Bragging.  They're narration of what they did on Raids was hilarious and full of color.  It totally shocked me!  I mean they were busting into strip joints, acting like they owned the Police (even when their characters had gotten shot), and maximized every chance they had to Approach and Challenge.  It was the most fun I've had playing the game yet.  I'm not going to go into all the details of the game (it'd be similar to the account above except we had to go 8 raids to find a winner), but Matt (the youth pastor) ended up winning.  He was by the best bragger and narrator of the group.

{What I learned}

First, this game is a heckuva a lot of fun to play.  Way more than I expected.

Second, fulfilling a GF's desire can get redundant.  People have to be really creative and engaged to keep it fresh the whole game.

Third, having all NPCs capable of inflicting a wound on a Biker makes the game a bitt too lethal for my tastes.

Fourth, the GF's Secret is rarely invoked.

Fifth, people need more incentives to Gang Up and do a Job.

Sixth, there needs to be a limit on the amount of Cash you can steal per Raid.  I put it at $4,000 before the 2nd playtest and it seemed to be a good number.

Seventh, upgrading your Bike is a big deal.

-So all in all, it was a great set of playtests.  I'm really looking forward to GenCon now.  Soon, I will be posting a Design thread where I talk about how I'm going to address what I've learned above.  Thanks for reading!

Peace,

-Troy
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Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
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Posts: 16490


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« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2006, 09:21:58 AM »

At considerable risk to my immortal soul, I suggest that if a GF's Desire is fulfilled, she, uh ... (I smell the brimstone)

... gets a new, different Desire.

Best, Ron
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Vaxalon
Member

Posts: 1619


« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2006, 10:56:48 AM »

Mike and Dave were busy and a few of our other friends showed up just to say hi. I figured I'd show them Cutthroat, but I wasn't expecting much. These guys are dyed in the wool DnD players. One of the guys (Nate) has all three Monster Manuals MEMORIZED!!! He can tell you every feat by heart in the Player Handbook, Complete Adventurer, and Complete Divine. One of the other guys (Matt) is attending college to become a youth pastor. "Him playing Cutthroat?" I thought, "Hmmm." So, needless to say, I was a little worried how they would react to it.

WHOA! I couldn't believe it! They got right into the game, never ONCE questioned the fact that there's no levels, no GM, no XP. They took to it like bees to honey. They totally kicked my butt in Bragging. They're narration of what they did on Raids was hilarious and full of color. It totally shocked me! I mean they were busting into strip joints, acting like they owned the Police (even when their characters had gotten shot), and maximized every chance they had to Approach and Challenge. It was the most fun I've had playing the game yet. I'm not going to go into all the details of the game (it'd be similar to the account above except we had to go 8 raids to find a winner), but Matt (the youth pastor) ended up winning. He was by the best bragger and narrator of the group.

Sounds like their experiences, or lack thereof, had not caused either of them any particular mental impairment relating to narrative.
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"In our game the other night, Joshua's character came in as an improvised thing, but he was crap so he only contributed a d4!"
                                     --Vincent Baker
Troy_Costisick
Member

Posts: 802


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« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2006, 11:18:55 AM »

Heya,

Well Cutthroat is a very Gamist game and not really concerned with making a narrative of any sort.  So given their background in DnD3.5, which is also very Gamist, it may not be too much of a stretch.  But the fact that they didn't balk at the fact that there's no GM, no levels, and no classes did surprise me.  In the past, they had turned up their noses to non-traditional games.  So, for me, this was really encouraging.  It means that Cutthroat can appeal to a much larger audience than I first guessed.

Peace,

-Troy
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