*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
October 31, 2014, 09:15:57 AM

Login with username, password and session length
Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Search:     Advanced search
275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 71 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: [1]
Print
Author Topic: Misspent Youth: A Game of Juvenile Delinquency and Being Awesome  (Read 2342 times)
Robert Bohl
Member

Posts: 525


WWW
« on: August 24, 2006, 09:42:28 AM »

On another thread, James suggested a new thread, and I shall comply.

2) Does this matter?  Am I going to get anything useful from looking at these distributions?  Should I just go with my gut and have it playtested?

(PS: On the drive home from Gen Con I wrote the complete notes/outline of a game.)

Hi Rob,

To answer question 2: Yes, it matters; in games with dice, dice mechanics affect the shape of play greatly.  However, you probably don't need to know curves and probabilities and all the rest of that, except in very broad terms.  I would suggest you're going about this a little bit backwards:

In the context of your game, find out what effect you want the dice to have, both in terms of possible range and effect and probably outcomes.  Then develope on the mechanic that does that, playtest it to confirm it matches expectations.  Lacerate, rinse, repeat.

Dice mechanics and probability curves are fun (for some people) and useful to know as a tool in your designer's belt, but without the context of the game it's going to be in, it's basically mathamatical wanking.

So... what's your game idea?  (probably best for a new thread, esp. since it seems you've gotten your answer to #1)

James

The Big 3 on Misspent Youth:

1)  What is your game about?

Misspent Youth is about standing up to power and having fun (not the standard "games are fun right?" stuff, having fun as characters is important to the game) while doing it.  It's about growing up too fast versus being sheltered.  It's about whether you can ever stand up to power and have it mean something, or if it's all just gas.

2)  What do the characters do exactly?

Characters fight The Authority as it tries to pollute, crush, or harm the things that matter to them.  They show off to one another, help one another, sometimes undermine one another.  They try to spread the rebellion and hang onto youth as long as they can.

3)  How do the players play the game?

Players design the characteristics of The Authority, choosing the aspects and methods which appeal to them most and then create their troublemaker, detailing how the child got to where she is today.  At the outset of play, an Operation is detailed and during play players set scenes to address the Operation and their own issues.

There's a lot I could talk about but hopefully that gets most of the Big 3.  I'm willing to elaborate.  I have half of a playtest ruleset written and the other half completed design but in scattered notes that have to be brought together.

--

What do I want the dice to do?  I want the dice to determine the outcome of conflict (and during action scenes, task) resolution with a representational-of-reality bell curve of probability, so that extreme results are rare.  Bonuses increase the size of one die, penalties decrease the size of one die (from a base of d6).  Three dice are always used. 

What I expect the dice to do is as bonuses are gained, the average total will increase and the spread will fatten out. Here are the possible dice pools (depending on the total number of penalties and bonuses one has) from the other thread.

3d1
2d1, 1d2
1d1, 2d2
3d2
2d2, 1d4
1d2, 2d4
3d4
2d4, 1d6
1d4, 2d6
3d6
2d6, 1d8
1d6, 2d8
3d8
2d8, 1d10
1d8, 2d10
3d10
2d10, 1d12
1d10, 2d12
3d12
Logged

Game:
Misspent Youth: Ocean's 11 + Avatar: The Last Airbender + Snow Crash
Shows:
Oo! Let's Make a Game!: Joshua A.C. Newman and I make a transhumanist RPG
iago
Member

Posts: 863


WWW
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2006, 10:41:11 AM »

I think as presented it's a little too early to be offering up dice mechanics.  Looking at those, and wiping vestiges of our GenCon conversation from my mind, there's no connection for me between the dice pools and how your system is geared to deliver on your answers to the big three.

Connect the dots for me?
Logged

joepub
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 569

Joe Thomas McDonald


« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2006, 10:44:31 AM »

Hey, Rob.
Interesting - we're both designing games on wasted youth, fighitng the authority.

Check out Boulevard.
Logged

Robert Bohl
Member

Posts: 525


WWW
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2006, 10:47:24 AM »

Yeah I was kind of afraid of that.  The dice thread requested a big three thread, but without explaining a lot more of the system I don't know how I can make that clear enough.  I'll try.

You roll for a conflict with 3d6.  Each bonus ups one die by one size.  You can't go up a second size until all dice are the same size.  (i.e., 2 bonuses is 2d8, 1d6, NEVER 1d10, 2d6).

Penalties work the same way.  Each penalty reduces a die by one size.

Lots of things can get you bonuses and penalties, but the main one is the traits on your character sheet. You get bonuses for having traits that apply to the scene (and benefit you).  You get penalties for traits that apply to the scene (and hurt you).

One picks traits which are in-theme, and then in using them and acting in-theme, you wind up supporting the theme of the game.  If you increase your viciousness, you can get bonuses but that is likely to make you get old before your time.  If you take penalties to look cool, you get authorial-control chits.  We're starting to get to the point where I will have to explain the whole game, but hopefully that gets close to answering your question.
Logged

Game:
Misspent Youth: Ocean's 11 + Avatar: The Last Airbender + Snow Crash
Shows:
Oo! Let's Make a Game!: Joshua A.C. Newman and I make a transhumanist RPG
Robert Bohl
Member

Posts: 525


WWW
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2006, 10:48:37 AM »

Hey, Rob.
Interesting - we're both designing games on wasted youth, fighitng the authority.

Check out Boulevard.

Oh boy. I hope we're not too similar.  I'll go looking for Boulevard.
Logged

Game:
Misspent Youth: Ocean's 11 + Avatar: The Last Airbender + Snow Crash
Shows:
Oo! Let's Make a Game!: Joshua A.C. Newman and I make a transhumanist RPG
Robert Bohl
Member

Posts: 525


WWW
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2006, 12:51:31 PM »

Joe:  Your game seems pretty cool and it seems very different from mine.  Phew.  I like the social satire element of it a lot.  And the cap gun thing is really out there (probably a good thing).
Logged

Game:
Misspent Youth: Ocean's 11 + Avatar: The Last Airbender + Snow Crash
Shows:
Oo! Let's Make a Game!: Joshua A.C. Newman and I make a transhumanist RPG
joepub
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 569

Joe Thomas McDonald


« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2006, 01:25:45 PM »

RobNJ,

check out Caz's game Covert Generation. I believe it is available through IPR.
It is very similar to the things you are trying to do -

It's a game of peaceful, subversive revolution - carried out by 12-16 year olds.
It's got a very cyber-punky feel. Edgy technology. Corporate control. Drone society.
These Covert Generation kids are the only ones who can break the cookie-cutter society that Generation X formed.
They are the only ones, and they've banded together to form a society.

It's about stickin' it to the man, but doing so according to your ethics and your rules.
It's also about being hella cool - pulling off cool moves, being slick and stylish - getting boosts.

The game doesn't bump die sizes - it instead adds dice.
But... I suggest taking a very critical look at it.
Then tell me what is similar, and what is different - between it and your game.
Logged

Robert Bohl
Member

Posts: 525


WWW
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2006, 02:25:31 PM »

Right, Covert Generation. 

So I came to Gen Con and decided I'd spitball some ideas for my game with some of the guys there, but wouldn't seriously think about doing anything with it for like a year.  So I'm taking to some guys at lunch about the game and they're like, "Wow, that sounds a lot like this game Covert Generation."

I get panicked.  I get back to the convention hall and ask for a schpiel on CG, and get more panicked.  It's pretty clear that there's a lot of overlap and, not only that, similar inspiration (we both had a reaction to a the same game as part of our generative impulse for the games in question).  I get a demo, and I'm worried cause I liked it so much and there seems to be overlap.  I play a 2 hour demo and relax.  But only a little bit.  Because after that point I feel a fire under my ass to get something written which in the end results in me writing the rules on the drive home.

Now to answer your question:

CG is inspired by things like Codename: Kids Next Door and Agent Cody Banks.  MY is more inspired by A Clockwork Orange, Malcolm X, The Yippies, etc.

In CG, there's a lot more setting intact and presented to you.  In MY you generate all of the setting although the rules bias toward a certain vibe.  For example you need not go for oppressive corporations or drone society, you define what is screwing up the world, and how it's doing it.

CG seems to me to be generally more task-resolution-based than MY.  MY has rules for special task-resolution-scenes, but for the most part it's conflict resolution.

MY has a major mechanic centered around the characters' age.

--

Those are some of the differences off the top of my head.  Obviously when it comes time to actually produce a book, I need to pay attention to how Covert Generation presents itself and make sure that the distinctions between the games are clear.

--

PS:  I meant to try out Perfect and never got the chance to.  The setting is right up my alley.
Logged

Game:
Misspent Youth: Ocean's 11 + Avatar: The Last Airbender + Snow Crash
Shows:
Oo! Let's Make a Game!: Joshua A.C. Newman and I make a transhumanist RPG
joepub
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 569

Joe Thomas McDonald


« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2006, 04:45:44 PM »

Cool.
I am excited to see Clockwork Orange - the game. (Perfect drew inspiration from it, as well.)

Clockwork Orange... the characters are placed in a world they care nothing about.
Their violence doesn't even register on their own radar. They have not been taught how to empathize.

But... the more they hurt, the more they feel.

How can you reflect that with mechanics?
Is there a way to "step it up"? The more you crank the intensity, the more die sizes you get... but the higher the chance that you feel remorse?

Just some thoughts.
Logged

Robert Bohl
Member

Posts: 525


WWW
« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2006, 04:53:34 PM »

I should say that MY is about the rowdy youth aspect of A Clockwork Orange more than the violence issues per se.  The gang of droogs out to have fun and thumb their nose at everything mentality, I mean, rather than the gleeful raping.  The kids in MY struggle with whether to use violence or not, and there are violence escalation bonuses and enticements to spiral down where being violent makes you better at being violent.

However, being violent also ages you, and getting old is a two-sided coin in Misspent Youth.  It is in fact this notion of "spending" your youth--and the risks that entails--that gave the game its name.  (Thanks again for inspiration on the name, Fred.)

That said, the kids in this game do care about their world.  They want to make it better and protect it from The Authority.  But the mechanics sort of operate in reverse from the emotional narrative you detail in A Clockwork Orange.  Being constantly violent, brutal or cruel hardens you and ushers you out of the game.

PS:  I'm almost done with only-I-can-grok-them playtest rules.  I expect to be done tonight.  I expect shortly thereafter to be begging friends to let me playtest the game with them.
Logged

Game:
Misspent Youth: Ocean's 11 + Avatar: The Last Airbender + Snow Crash
Shows:
Oo! Let's Make a Game!: Joshua A.C. Newman and I make a transhumanist RPG
Pages: [1]
Print
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
Oxygen design by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!