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Started by Mel White, November 12, 2006, 10:04:46 PM
Quote from: Mel White on November 12, 2006, 10:04:46 PMIn character generation, I think the initial response was from everyone, myself included, was 'what have we gotten ourselves into?" There is a lot going on at the start of the game. Characters are generated using the Ganakagok tarot deck as inspiration, good medicine is divided up into gifts, bad medicine is divided up into burdens, a character map is generated, the world map is created, and the Ganakagok tarots are used to determine what's going on in the world at large, and in the village of the characters. Interpreting the cards is a lot of the fun of being the GM, and the experience at MACE makes me think that the players would enjoy more opportunities to interpret the cards.
Quote from: Jason Morningstar on November 13, 2006, 08:48:37 AMGanakagok has a good amount of complexity that demands explanation up front, and were I Bill I'd try to find ways to address this in play, perhaps through some procedure akin to initiations in Dogs, where the important bits are introduced methodically but gradually. We had a sub-optimal situation (Tanith arrived late, people were eating, it was a chaotic room full of noise) and things got explained, re-explained, and occasionally lost or missed. All this, and the game itself does not really conform to a four hour block effectively. Mel did a good job under the circumstances. I think a "convention version" could be developed that adjusts rules (as Mel did on the fly, by necessity) to make it punchier and faster at the outset.
QuoteI decided that we would play one round each for Night, Twilight, and Dawn stages, ending with the narration of each character's Fate at Morning. In a normal game, Stage change occurs when the mana levels in the magic spitit pools reach a certain level. But in the four-hour convention timetable, we would not have enough time to do that. The format we used worked out well in that we were able to get to morning in just under 4 hours (we ended after midnight but we started late).
QuoteThis was the first time I'd seen the cards and they are nice, although the purist in me chafes at the indiscriminate mixing of iconography from Northwest Coast to Athabascan to Inuit. The books themselves look great, too.
QuoteThe most interesting thing for me was observing the two players who fell into the game more or less by chance, showing up to play D&D. They obviously found Ganakagok very accessible and at the end of the night expressed their intention to buy a copy.
Quote from: Bill_White on November 13, 2006, 01:52:48 PMWhat were the moments where playing the game was cool, or conversely, a drag, beyond that initial steep learning curve of "This is how we're going to do it right now, for this game" or even within it?
Quote from: Mel White on November 13, 2006, 08:27:33 PMQuote from: Bill_White on November 13, 2006, 01:52:48 PMWhat were the moments where playing the game was cool, or conversely, a drag, beyond that initial steep learning curve of "This is how we're going to do it right now, for this game" or even within it? Bill,One concern I had during play was that Jeremy would not be able to participate in the in-game activities because his character, Anitahu, began the game with 2 good medicine and thus only 2 gifts. During play, as we carried out each player turn, I could see that Jeremy wanted his character to do something to influence the results of the other characters' conflicts, but he couldn't unless Anitahu was present. I've been thinking that if this is a problem, some solutions could be to have a floor for the amount of gifts a character starts with, allow the character to draw an additional card for gifts, or provide an opportunity for the players to trade gifts and burdens at the start of the game. Mel
Quote from: Andrew Morris on November 13, 2006, 03:03:18 PMI've had the exact same experience of two D&D players sitting down at the game when another session folded. And they rocked it like crazy. It's interesting to hear that Bill has seen D&D players take up Ganakagok easily.Bill, do you see D&D players having an easier time grasping Ganakagok? Like, more so than White Wolf players, for example?
Quote from: Jason Morningstar on November 13, 2006, 02:12:10 PMMy favorite bits were my grandstanding, hateful screeds, where Tornliaq laid into the entire community, scolding them and criticizing their behavior while begging them to listen to him. That was great.
Quote from: Mel White on November 12, 2006, 10:04:46 PMTwilightTarlanegaq—Hunting on the ice, sees ice wolf tracks and decides to follow them. The tracks lead to a nude man, sitting on the snow. The man reveals himself to be Kotoye, a god, and he needs a mortal body. Tarlanegaq agree to give up her body, but indicates she is not a worthy vessel and could find Kotoye a better form. Kotoye agrees, and shares Tarlanegaq's body as she finds him a new vessel—Adulop, her former suitor! Kotoye leaves Tarlanegaq and takes over Adulop. [This scene ended here without conflict. I should have said that here is the conflict—can Tarlanegaq convince, subdue, or otherwise defeat Adulop so that Kotoye can take over Adulop's form. Ah, well. It was cool nonetheless.]
QuoteTornliaq—[I'm a little confused as to what happened here. I messed up during the turn. It started as Tornliaq's turn but led to a conflict for Amikvik. Tornliaq returned to the village and instigated the actions in Amikvik's scene (below). Tornliaq did not face a conflict of his own.]Amikvik—The village is restless. The people see the changes occurring, they see other villages moving, they hear of strange incidents at sea, and they are concerned. A group of villagers confronts Amikvik to see what he wants them to do and why isn't Anagutokug (the village) doing something. Amikvik reassures them, saying he knows what he is doing. Amikvik believes that the coming change is good, thus no action is necessary. But the people are worried, and Kotoye (in Adulop's form) starts calling for a new chief. Tornliaq joins in! Amikvik's leadership is at stake as he must convince the people that he knows what is best. Amikvik wins the Face challenge in the ensuing debate, but then appoints his daughter Tarlanegaq as the new village leader
Quote from: Bill_White on November 14, 2006, 09:20:29 PMThe point is, once the player has committed the character to a course of action whose outcome depends on how others react or respond, you've got a roll. Will that work, do you think?
Quote from: Bill_White on November 14, 2006, 09:20:29 PMDid Amikvik's turn come right after Tornliaq's (or during it), or did you play out Anitahu's turn first?If I understand correctly, here is where Jason-playing-Tornliaq went back to the village and shrilly demanded that the People heed him, in direct response to a situation card. How did you frame that for him, Mel, do you remember?
Quote from: Jason Morningstar on November 15, 2006, 07:27:26 AMActually Andy narrated himself into the scene and moved forward with a compelling bit of narration, changing things a bit - I was glad to step back and let him have a conflict there. I didn't see any reason to enforce rigid turn sequence - it seemed natural.
Quote from: Mel White on November 15, 2006, 05:19:34 PMQuote from: Jason Morningstar on November 15, 2006, 07:27:26 AMActually Andy narrated himself into the scene and moved forward with a compelling bit of narration, changing things a bit - I was glad to step back and let him have a conflict there. I didn't see any reason to enforce rigid turn sequence - it seemed natural.Jason was very gracious about my messing up the turn sequence. But I do like the turn sequence, I think it's an important aspect of the game. That is, younger characters act first so that older characters can choose to base their actions on what they saw happen to the younger character. We saw a little bit of this in the game at MACE. In the first turn, where Tarlenagaq was confronted by her mother (Mom forbid Tarlenagaq from going out on the ice to hunt). At this point, Andy introduced his character Amikvik (Tarlenagaq's father) as being present. It was Amikvik (played by Andy) who brought up the idea of marriage for Tarlenagaq and indicated that he was discussing the marriage with Adulop's parents. That inspired the idea of a pre-wedding dinner to showcase the bride-to-be. And in Tornliaq's first scene, in which he was confronted by the northern paddlers, Jeremy suggested that his character, Anitahu (who was an older village fisherman) would also be there. So, in Anitahu's scene immediately following, he and Tornliaq start off together. Now, that's not to say that younger characters can't seek to be present in older character's scenes, but the turn order builds the dynamic where it is the 'youngsters' get themselves or the village in trouble, or set the scene, and their older and wiser compatriots who come to the rescue or provide some element of wisdom to move the story towards the endgame. Mel