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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 73 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: [Mortal Coil] Frozen Alaska and serious rules questions  (Read 21148 times)
coffeestain
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« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2006, 07:56:59 AM »

I wonder if it might work better to place tokens in offense and defense and then decide what the actual actions are after the reveal when everyone's got a bigger picture of how the conflict should play out.

It's tricky, but that's what the reallocation round is for. If you seriously miscalculate, you have a second chance.

Ah, right.  That makes sense.

Regards,
Daniel
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Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #16 on: August 25, 2006, 03:58:34 AM »

I echo Clinton's concerns.  "Steal a child" was Body + "Charmer".  We framed all of our actions as both active and directly opposed, and in play when they were resolved, there was no good way to accomodate the mutual successes.  Regardless of how obvious it may seem to others, it completely stopped us during the game. 

Siwash is sort of a period racist epithet, BTW - my guy was a Jilkaat Kwan clan Tlingit, and he was curing a child of smallpox.  Just to be, you know, clear. 
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Clinton R. Nixon
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« Reply #17 on: August 25, 2006, 04:24:14 AM »

Siwash is sort of a period racist epithet, BTW - my guy was a Jilkaat Kwan clan Tlingit, and he was curing a child of smallpox.  Just to be, you know, clear. 

I should have mentioned that. Thinking that way was important to the task - my character could ignore that character's lies because she felt he was not as pure as her, but, yeah, repeating it as a simple descriptor isn't awesome.
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Clinton R. Nixon
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Doyce
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« Reply #18 on: August 25, 2006, 04:47:10 AM »

We framed all of our actions as both active and directly opposed, and in play when they were resolved, there was no good way to accomodate the mutual successes. 

Okay, now I'm confused, and/or need further info.  If the actions were all active and directly opposed, how were there mutual successes?  The way I'm understanding the language, if there's direct opposition to a action, either the action or the direct opposition will succeed. 

Who won what in conflicts Clinton mentioned?
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Doyce Testerman ~ http://random.average-bear.com
Someone gets into trouble, then get get out of it again; people love that story -- they never get tired of it.
Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #19 on: August 25, 2006, 04:59:05 AM »

How'd that go down, Clinton?  I recall the shaman succeeding by one after a lot of fiddling around, but he failed to Klondike Kate in the other test.  Or something.  I don't feel like I have a solid grasp on the chip mechanic at all, and I sort of took a step back as Clinton and Remi went back and forth trying to figure it out. 
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Brennan Taylor
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« Reply #20 on: August 26, 2006, 02:22:37 AM »

OK, I think I need some more input on this. What were the stakes of this conflict? What you listed above were the actions. The more I think about it, the more I think "Steal a Child" is pretty broad for an action, and sounds more like the character's ultimate goal in the conflict.

Your main complaint I think is that the book doesn't give enough instruction on how to set stakes and then determine actions and their outcome, is that right?
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Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #21 on: August 26, 2006, 05:43:06 AM »

No, you lay out what stake-setting as and so forth, and as rabid hippie gamers we get that.  That particular conflict:

If I win, I take the kid out back and drive out the demons of sickness over a devil's club and rosehip fire.  I spent a magic token to say that this would, in fact, work. 

If Clinton wins, I'm chased away from the infirmary at gunpoint and can't return.  The unspoken assumption was that the kid dies.  I think that's right. 

We didn't know how to allocate tokens to resolve the conflict. 

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Brennan Taylor
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« Reply #22 on: August 26, 2006, 06:26:50 AM »

OK. I think I understand what's unclear in the rules regarding this situation. I've been thinking about it, and I've gone over the relevant sections of the rules. Stakes setting is pretty clear in there, and it sounds like you had good stakes for the conflict.

It seems like Clinton was saying that after he wrote out the conflict, he was clear on where the problem lay. My solution to the conflict is listed above, and that would move you toward the resolution of the conflict. However, I don't think the stakes would be achieved after this round of actions, because the shaman would fail to shake the nurse's faith. He would avoid being intimidated and take the child outside, but the nurse could then do something else to try to stop him, and you do another round of actions at that point, again aimed at the same stakes. I think this part is pretty clear in the rules.

What needs to be more clear in the rules is how you compare actions after the reveal and how these move toward a resolution of the conflict. Here's how I propose to explain it:

After the reveal, all of the players involved declare what their actions represent and which faculty and aptitude they are calling on. Then the GM (with the help of all of the players) needs to take a moment to sort out which actions are opposing one another. Any actions between two characters where the story cannot make sense if both actions succeed must be resolved as opposing actions.

The above conflict round is an excellent example for this rule, and I would use my readjustment of which actions oppose one another as the resolution of the example.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2006, 06:34:28 AM by Brennan Taylor » Logged

Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #23 on: August 26, 2006, 07:23:12 AM »

OK, I think we were playing all or nothing - one set of actions, then redistribute if you want to pay for it, then the stakes are resolved.  Which looks like it is wrong ... correct me if I'm mistaken, guys.
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Doyce
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« Reply #24 on: August 26, 2006, 08:14:44 AM »

*light comes on*

Oh, I see!  "Each side won one of the ACTIONS, so what happens to the STAKES?"  Right?  That's what it boils down to.

Phrased that way (simplified, obviously, far more easily than it ever is when you're sitting at the table), the answer is obvious: you play another round of conflict, just as Brennan says above.

Brennan, actually, I have a suggestion (and actually, for right now, I'm just going to put part of this up on the Wiki): at some nebulous future point if/when you revise Mortal Coil, USE THIS CONFLICT as the example for the text of "Conflict Rounds" on p. 58.

Quote
Often, after everyone involved in a conflict has taken an action [should maybe read 'all their actions'], the outcome of the conflict is still not clear. If the group is unsure who has won the conflict [really should be "the stakes" there], then [the conflict] is not complete and another round of actions needs to be initiated.

Now, I know that you HAVE an example there, but allow me to submit my humble opinion that it's probably the worst example text that you have in the whole book, because it's so very vague.  I read the "Conflict Rounds" bit and nodded, then read the Example and was in no way enlightened as to when that might come up in play... I didn't see the specific actions that failed and succeeded on either side that lead to unresolved stakes -- I was just told that they happened, so I suppose it failed on the "show me, don't tell me" writing rules.   

In any case, I sorta shrugged and figured "well, I'll know it when I see it."

And then Clinton posted pretty much exactly that situation, and I didn't know it when I saw it, despite the fact that their situation is a pretty dang good example of it.
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Doyce Testerman ~ http://random.average-bear.com
Someone gets into trouble, then get get out of it again; people love that story -- they never get tired of it.
Doyce
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« Reply #25 on: August 26, 2006, 08:21:53 AM »

OK, I think we were playing all or nothing - one set of actions, then redistribute if you want to pay for it, then the stakes are resolved.  Which looks like it is wrong ... correct me if I'm mistaken, guys.

Heya Jason,

Take a look at the "Conflict Rounds" section was just blathering about (redundantly to Brennan's post, mostly) on p. 58 of the dead tree edition.

I don't know that you're playing it "wrong" -- often, it seems like one round of conflict should resolve the conflict and indicate who won stakes.  Maybe not really really often, but yeah... fairly often.

You got one of those situations where you need that rule on page 58.
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Doyce Testerman ~ http://random.average-bear.com
Someone gets into trouble, then get get out of it again; people love that story -- they never get tired of it.
Brennan Taylor
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« Reply #26 on: August 27, 2006, 07:45:30 AM »

OK, I think we were playing all or nothing - one set of actions, then redistribute if you want to pay for it, then the stakes are resolved. Which looks like it is wrong ... correct me if I'm mistaken, guys.

OK, wow. Yeah, if you do that, the rules totally break.

Clinton, is this what happened?
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Clinton R. Nixon
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« Reply #27 on: August 27, 2006, 08:02:17 AM »

That's exactly what happened.

So, then, when is the conflict resolved?
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Clinton R. Nixon
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Brennan Taylor
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« Reply #28 on: August 27, 2006, 08:20:08 AM »

That's exactly what happened.

So, then, when is the conflict resolved?

If you do the first round of actions and it's clear which side won, then the conflict resolves.

If you get to the end of the first round of actions and neither side wins, you do a second round of actions (in the example case, probably the shaman trying to put the kid over the fire to do the ritual, and the nurse trying to stop him again). You continue to do action rounds, with your action tokens refreshing to your pool at the end of each one, until one side or the other is the clear winner. At that point, the conflict resolves.

Basically, if you can't win with your initial tactic, you try something else that gives your character a different advantage in the next round of actions. The nurse in your example could try to call for help, or get some tool to help her in the physical conflict (a gun, a club, whatever).
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Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #29 on: August 27, 2006, 10:34:44 AM »

So winning takes place entirely on the social contract level?
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