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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 75 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: [Kissanil] Answers to Power 19  (Read 3115 times)
Conteur
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« on: October 21, 2007, 02:18:47 PM »

It's a great bunch of questions to help me focus my game.
Answers to Power 19

1.) What is your game about?<2.) What do the characters do?<3.) What do the players (including the GM if there is one) do?<4.) How does your setting (or lack thereof) reinforce what your game is about?<5.) How does the Character Creation of your game reinforce what your game is about?Everyone in Kissanil is powerful. They can transform the world around them much more than a simple human could. For exemple, they can craft stone with their hands very quickly, creating a house in less than 3 hours. Every character also has flaws giving him more depth.

6.) What types of behaviors/styles of play does your game reward (and punish if necessary)?
I reward fun around the table. I award xp for a good laugh or intense drama and emotion. I would punish hack and slash gamers.

7.) How are behaviors and styles of play rewarded or punished in your game?I award xp points for good roleplaying, drama and humor. I also reward xp for overcoming physical, mental or social obstacles. I punish hack and slash with characters repercussions in his life or finding a more enjoyable player. Violence in game is good if there is a story reason.

8.) How are the responsibilities of narration and credibility divided in your game?<9.) What does your game do to command the players' attention, engagement, and participation? (i.e. What does the game do to make them care?)The game is created to instill a sense of wonder in the players and the complex plots were designed to make them feel emotive. I always center my campaign around the characters and not the other way around. A Storyteller must know what kind of game a player want before making it.

10.) What are the resolution mechanics of your game like?It is resolved by task rolls. Every sword strike need a dice roll. I could explain my choice by writing that I love unexpected situation ---. It is calculated by an ability (like Dexterity) added with the skill (Melee) added to a D10 and a D8. These dices are the basic roll.

11.) How do the resolution mechanics reinforce what your game is about?Should I save my dying friend or strike my nemesis now? Dilemas like that happen a lot when tactical battle is involved. Critical hits and miss are also fun and we often forget our daily life when we fear losing our loved character.

12.) Do characters in your game advance? If so, how?<13.) How does the character advancement (or lack thereof) reinforce what your game is about?With awards comes power. With power comes responsibility. Dilemas like the one I explained comes from these responsabilities and power. Imagination is also more prevalent when a character can fly surrounded by fire and shooting lightning from his palms.

14.) What sort of product or effect do you want your game to produce in or for the players?I want players to feel memorable moments around the table to tell around the campfire. I want them to feel emotive about the situation their characters are in. I also want them to be fascinated by the wrld and their actions.
Some aspect of my games make people wonder about our human life after the game. The Merchant Revolt in my game is my critic about the Mega Corporation, the pollution and alienation in our world.

15.) What areas of your game receive extra attention and color? Why?<16.) Which part of your game are you most excited about or interested in? Why?<<18.) What are your publishing goals for your game?I wanted to concurrence Dungeon with Kissanil when I was 14 years old...I disliked every games I swaw because it was too simple or I had few information. Now, I think more rationally and my greatest aspiration would be to create a community of paying members (not much, maybe only 10$ per years to pay those millions of pictures I want) who could get an automatic update of a PDF Kissanil (with Lulu.com, I will have my book and be happy now).
-I really need some pictures. Without them, I will never write post my entire game. (my Site has less than 10% information on Kissanil)

19.) Who is your target audience?
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David Berg
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Posts: 612


« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2007, 12:35:37 PM »

A few points I'm having trouble reconciling.  You say:

1.) What is your game about?<2.) What do the characters do?The characters are generally adventurers or important characters hoping to change the face of the world in whatever way they want. They are rarely seeking glory, fortune or danger for the fun of it (respect is not acquired this way in Kissanil).

6.) What types of behaviors/styles of play does your game reward (and punish if necessary)?
. . . I award xp for a good laugh or intense drama and emotion.

But then you also say:

2.) What do the characters do? . . . I also work presently on the need to respect the usefulness of a team. Characters used to be able to do everything; now they are more specialized

19.) Who is your target audience? . . . Peope who like details, who like tactical combats

These aren't contradictory or anything -- you can certainly have soul-searching and world-molding plans that involve tactical team fighting.  I just want to be clear which way you envision it:

a) it's okay if lots of play goes by without tactical fights, as long as some dramatic plot is being pursued, or
b) it's okay if dramatic plots get little attention at times, as long as play includes a lot of tactical fights

If what you actually want is:

c) meaningful events as parts of dramatic plots occur consistently in play, and so do tactical fights

then that's a pretty challenging game to design.  That's a lot for your system to make happen.  The following assumption is drastically insufficient:

11.) How do the resolution mechanics reinforce what your game is about?Should I save my dying friend or strike my nemesis now? Dilemas like that happen a lot when tactical battle is involved.

I've played many, many tactical battles in games where the survival of one's comrades was just another piece of the strategy, not some thematic issue.
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here's my blog, discussing Delve, my game in development
Conteur
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Posts: 43


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« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2007, 12:12:23 PM »

I commonly put an action scene right in the beginning of the game but I don't like boring combat. So, tactical combat is something I like.
Then, I love it when the whole game continue in dramatic roleplaying.
Sometimes, there is no combat at all but when there is one, I want it to be tactical and dramatic.
As for the dilemas during a fight, I can think as a war veteran and count my soldier's heads but I can also do stupid things because my emotions drive me to do them. Hmmm.Maybe my example is not clear...
As my new Game Example in my site show, I use task resolution to increase tension in players and in characters. If a character knows he's not a good lie detector, he could jump on you by suspicion of treachery...
Maybe my mechanic is flawed but it's the only one I knows...
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pells
Member

Posts: 192


« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2007, 06:49:37 AM »

Hi Patrick !!! Me again ...

Your power 19 gives me information about your goals... but not how your mechanic helps you reach them !!!

For instance :
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5.) How does the Character Creation of your game reinforce what your game is about?Everyone in Kissanil is powerful. They can transform the world around them much more than a simple human could. For exemple, they can craft stone with their hands very quickly, creating a house in less than 3 hours. Every character also has flaws giving him more depth.
So, you want power and flaws. But how does this works exactly ?

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6.) What types of behaviors/styles of play does your game reward (and punish if necessary)?
I reward fun around the table. I award xp for a good laugh or intense drama and emotion. I would punish hack and slash gamers.
Is this some kind of advice or is there a mechanic related to it ? How would punish hack and slash ? Don't give me a recommendation there. For instance in the shadow of yesterday, hack and slash for no reason is somehow punished because the risk is very high of dying and you gain no benefit from it (the main question being why the fight ?).

Quite frankly, I could do that for every points. Defining your goals is one thing. Finding a way of mechanically enforcing them is another. And maybe, if you want our help, put emphasis on goals you haven't find a way to reach yet ...
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Conteur
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« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2007, 07:37:37 AM »

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pells
Member

Posts: 192


« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2007, 09:21:59 AM »

Patrick, here are my comments :

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Sometimes, when he's really angry, hate consumes him and he go on a rampage of destruction. It's okay with me so far as he recognize many people will hear about that and consider to eliminate him. Many games passed by without any fights (that player dislike fighting) but when it's story oriented, it's necessary...
The same thing could be said about d20. What you are describing is more related to DM's pratice than systems. Keep in mind two concepts :
Fluff : setting/situations related.
Crunch : system related.
Maybe your recommandation is what you are looking for, but then remember that this is not a constraint due to system.

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As for my flaws, I didn't say it but you gain Character Creation points for every flaws you take. Most players also love to have flaws that adds a great roleplaying complexity.
That's the meat Patrick !!! And that is what you have to show us !!!

So, I would recommend you to do all your power 19 over, putting emphasis on the meat !!! Yeah, I know, this might seems like a pain, but I think the more you work on this, the easier the promotion of your product will be ...
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Conteur
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« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2007, 08:39:23 AM »

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pells
Member

Posts: 192


« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2007, 11:22:07 AM »

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Quote
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Some things that my system is good for are:
Then it is important to mention them into a power 19. Those might be good reasons to choose your product over another ...
Speaking of which, a simple question : would it be possible to play Kissanil using another system than yours ? Which one ? Why ? Are there limits ?

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here), but without real success. The thing is, you will need to determine what place the system plays in your games. For instance, in Avalanche, which is a setting oriented project, our choices were clear : we don't provide the setting for a given system, so you can do what you want and we will provide stats using three archetypes (d20, TSOY and Fudge). But, please, note that Avalanche is written with almost no details, so it is easy and it makes sense to allow the DM to choose its own system.
That said, the place of your setting in your product, the way it is written, the information you provide : state this and tell the public how it helps reach your goals.

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Finally, I have a question about enforcing my goal in some mechanical way. I've seen some games and I've never found something I liked there. Do you have an idea?
Patrick, in my opinion, there is something very important for you to understand. Systems are meant to do a job : help you reach your goals. That is, it doesn't matter if you like them or not. Hey, maybe those goals are not yours after all. So, when looking at other systems, TSOY for instance, your approach should not be "do I like this ?", but "do these rules help reach the designer's goals ?".
Now, concerning your project, you're the designer !!! You establish goals and set rules that help reach them. And I guess we can help you in the process.
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Conteur
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« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2007, 12:49:29 PM »

I've played Kissanil with many games but none could give me what I really wanted. I think you could still play Kissanil with D20, Rolemaster, Fudge or TSoY. However, some adjustment would be necessary because the setting was made around the rules. In Kissanil, a house takes about 3 hours to build and so the magic must be boosted very much...
The overral goal of Kissanil is dilemmas and evasion, but more than that, every RPG goal should be to have fun. If a Storyteller don't like rules, he has the duty to change them the way he like.
I would not play TSoY as it stand because I think xp should be always awarded for what you learn, not what you are. I learned many things in my life that are in no way linked to my Key (or my personnality). I'm learning maths right now and maths continue to be my weak point. I changed my Key many time in my life and still I can return to my origin.
It's only my opinion and maybe I don't understand the Key system correctly but I know I don't want to make xp system centered on roleplaying. I didn't compare TSoY and White Wolf, just the way they reward roleplaying.
I thought of a new system I could use by seeing some of the games you mentionned. Instead of awarding xp for roleplay and fun (like I do), I would award something like a Player's pool. They could have a communal pool of point increasing every time we have fun or we see good drama. Every player could boost one of his roll by using these communal points. Is it a good idea?
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pells
Member

Posts: 192


« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2007, 10:36:08 AM »

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The overral goal of Kissanil is dilemmas and evasion, but more than that, every RPG goal should be to have fun.
Be careful with fun. Fun is just like humor, it depends on the person. What you might think as fun may not be found fun by others. For some people, having fun in a rpg is to play without DM, short games with a strong system that takes into account narrative power. That might not seem fun to you.

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I would not play TSoY as it stand because I think xp should be always awarded for what you learn, not what you are.
It really depends on the approach (maybe what you are saying is more simulasionist). Well, anyway, here's a proposal for you : xp should be awarded as to encourage a certain behavior. In d20, you earn xp by killing monsters, so this is what is encouraged. In TSOY, you earn xp by hitting your keys.
Quite franckly, I'm not interested in a realistic xp distribution. I don't care if it makes sense in a "real life context". I only care about it in the context of a game.
And, by the way, in TSOY, you can drop keys and take others ; no problem with that.

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I thought of a new system I could use by seeing some of the games you mentionned. Instead of awarding xp for roleplay and fun (like I do), I would award something like a Player's pool. They could have a communal pool of point increasing every time we have fun or we see good drama. Every player could boost one of his roll by using these communal points. Is it a good idea?
Well, I don't know ... But, think of the place of the xp in your game as a way to promote a certain type of behavior or as a way to simulate reality. But be careful : a gamist mechanic with a SIM xp distribution might be very weird !!!

Anyway, Patrick, I strongly advice you, again, to think about your game as a whole, not just separated pieces (PC creation, progression ...).
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Conteur
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« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2007, 09:11:45 AM »

Be careful with fun. Fun is just like humor, it depends on the person. What you might think as fun may not be found fun by others. For some people, having fun in a rpg is to play without DM, short games with a strong system that takes into account narrative power. That might not seem fun to you.
But isn't it the real goal behind every game. I mean, if someone don't have fun with dilemmas or evasion, he will not play this kind of game.

I'm thinking everyday about one of your first comment. "What does I'm providing you with?". I needed to make it clear and I worked on that since. Yesterday, I wrote (in my PDF) why does my game leads to dilemmas (in the section about politics and Frakal). I also worked on my rules and character creation (and would like to have help there maybe...)
You said that maybe that goal wasn't for me. Why it it, so, that every player felt my world was the most dilemma-making world they have seen? I don't think it's just my Storytelling style...
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your approach should not be "do I like this ?", but "do these rules help reach the designer's goals ?".
I know my rules are not really oriented for dilemmas but that's only because I can't find a way that please me to do that. If I don't like the rules I create, I will stop to create my game right now. My goal was and is achieved through my setting, if I could achieve it through my system in a way that I like, I would do it.

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That said, the place of your setting in your product, the way it is written, the information you provide : state this and tell the public how it helps reach your goals.
I could use an example about that. Is the way I wrote my Frakal (in my PDF) a good way?

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In d20, you earn xp by killing monsters, so this is what is encouraged.
In fact, in D20, you can earn xp with any challenge. I've played intrigue, horror and political game with that system. You earn xp when you learn. I want to use a system like that. In fact, that's why the D20 system and Rolemaster work so well in Kissanil (I could also try Fudge). Anyway, all Storyteller use the Golden rule and keep only the core idea).
I just think you can also have poor roleplay in TSoY when a player choose to take every Key just to gain more xp (yeah, stupid of them but when you think about power, you think this way (and you forget the rule about Transcend)).
I think the pool system I spoke about is a way to keep xp for learning and reward good roleplay too.

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Anyway, Patrick, I strongly advice you, again, to think about your game as a whole, not just separated pieces (PC creation, progression ...).
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pells
Member

Posts: 192


« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2007, 07:08:23 AM »

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You said that maybe that goal wasn't for me. Why it it, so, that every player felt my world was the most dilemma-making world they have seen? I don't think it's just my Storytelling style...
Two things here :
- I only said that the notion of fun wasn't universal. That meant that some games may try to reach some goals that aren't what you might be looking for. You're better off finding out why would people find your game fun, than "having fun" has a goal for your game.  Fun gives no information at all.
- Now, please, don't get me wrong, but who are those players Huh Your friends ? People you've been playing with over the years ? They might find your world wonderful, but be careful : if you're trying to publish, your public is going to be much larger ... And, then again, "providing the best dilemma-making world ever seen" provides no information. You're better telling me why it is a dilemma making world.

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I know my rules are not really oriented for dilemmas but that's only because I can't find a way that please me to do that. If I don't like the rules I create, I will stop to create my game right now. My goal was and is achieved through my setting, if I could achieve it through my system in a way that I like, I would do it.
Then work on it.

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I could use an example about that. Is the way I wrote my Frakal (in my PDF) a good way?
Quite franckly, more or less. That's not exactly what I'm looking for. Here's another advice (something I have learned here from forgites) : try to give me a step by step way to use your product as a way to create a dilemma. I know this is not easy. For instance, I'm still doing this for Avalanche. Its "special feature" is the calendar of events. So, I'm writing down a step by step way to use it in writing, preparing, playing and after the session. All with examples. Is it easy ? No. Is it worth it ? Yes.

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In fact, in D20, you can earn xp with any challenge. I've played intrigue, horror and political game with that system. You earn xp when you learn. I want to use a system like that. In fact, that's why the D20 system and Rolemaster work so well in Kissanil (I could also try Fudge). Anyway, all Storyteller use the Golden rule and keep only the core idea).
Then again, two things :
- Patrick, to be exact, in d20, you earn xp when overcome adversity. Not when you learn. It is taken for given that when you defeat, you learn. But d20, as it is, is not meant to play horror, nor politic. If you have to make adjustements to the system to do this, then you need to ask yourself some serious questions.
- The golden rule. It is not true. Not all DM just keep the core and make adjustement. Maybe in d20, because it doesn't do what you want. But in a good, not abashed game, no need for this.

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I just think you can also have poor roleplay in TSoY when a player choose to take every Key just to gain more xp (yeah, stupid of them but when you think about power, you think this way (and you forget the rule about Transcend)).
What is poor role playing ? good one ? You seem to take for granted that good role playing for you is good role playing for me. It is not true !!! So, find out what is good role playing for you and tell us about it. That might turns out to help you understand your goals. And TSOY is not about gaining power (not at least in a d20 sense).
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Conteur
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« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2007, 12:20:04 PM »

At long last, I was able to do a part of it and discuss it with my players. In my pdf (english only), I now explain the way to use Kissanil to create dilemma in a step by step method of creating a campaign. I saw that dilemma could happen in any game but now, it's impossible to play to my game without it (in fact, this game is intented to be played a long time and not for just one quick story).
Thanks a lot Sebastien, this was a truly great question I had to answer. I'm still not finished with it but I just wanted to know if I'm on track...
As for a game system about dilemma, one of my player made me look upon my
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pells
Member

Posts: 192


« Reply #13 on: December 03, 2007, 04:49:06 PM »

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I'm still not finished with it but I just wanted to know if I'm on track...
Is this the part "The Storyteller" in the english pdf version ? Maybe next time, put a link toward the material or put the text here ...

That said, right to the point ... I don't think you're on the right track. Let me explain.
Then again, your text is too generic. It could be used for d20, even for Avalanche !!! Try to be specific. If I can create dilemmas the same way in forgotten realms than in your world, why should I use yours ?
Also, I don't see the use of your material. You name cities, for which I have no information !!! Maybe you should try to present your material for the purpose of using it. Well, that means a lot of changes in your pdf ...

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Meanwhile, the Storyteller decides that to create confusion and wonder, the KissanJiJi must succeed.
Are you recommending me to fudge the dice (ignore any random result) here ?
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