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Author Topic: [SoY] More noobie questions  (Read 4040 times)
dindenver
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« on: February 08, 2008, 08:02:22 AM »

Hi!
  OK, here they come, please be gentle:
1) Where does bonus dice fall in IIEE? My guess is in the second "I"
2) I have a misunderstanding, when you are stakes setting in the first "I" is it possible to set uneven stakes outside of BDTP? Meaning If player A wins, player B is dead, if player B wins, his char gets a cookie? My guess is, that is alright if the players agree, but is the "normal" SG behavior to have the stakes of losing on par with the stakes of winning?
3) Further, I am having trouble reconciling this contradiction. In a "simple" resolution, you can't permanently resolve a conflict without BDTP, but in the book, you say that setting Stakes of "your dead" is possible. So, um, what does that mean, am I just looking at this from the wrong angle?
4) Tracking is confusing to me. Why do you need a Secret to hide your tracks? Wouldn't tracking someone who was trying to hide their tracks normally be a contested roll?
5) If I change IIEE to SCAN - "S" for Set Stakes "C" for Cast the die, "A" for Analyze the numbers, and "N" for Narrate the actual action, would that break IIEE or is it, hopefully, synonymous? The reason I ask is that for some reason my mind can't remember IIEE, what they stand for and what they mean, so an alternate mnemonic might help
  BTW, I know I am asking a lot of dumb questions, but I have read the rules a couple of times and I do love your game!
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Dave M
Author of Legends of Lanasia RPG (Still in beta)
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shadowcourt
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« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2008, 08:54:01 AM »

Dave,

I'm leaving 1 and 5 alone. I never remember the IIEE acronym. The flow of a round is so natural for us that it never comes up anymore. Someone who's more ritually-focused will have to answer those for you.

I can hit the others, though. Some of the answers I give will, in fact, be wildly different than those of other folks. But here's my crack at what I can answer with at least some small confidence.


2.) (This will actually answer 3, as well) You can, and you're right that its "normal" SG behavior to try and balance it. What you DON'T want, by my experience, are people agreeing to stakes they can't abide. And that means not just "Oh, man, if I lose this, I can't be happy with it ever" but also the surprising "Wait, I didn't really want that if I win." I often have sides set stakes, and if it seemed even slightly convuluted, formally repeat the stakes as SG, just so everyone's clear. This is helpful with new groups, as people sometimes put riders on it, or even realize they want to change the stakes.

Incidentally, there are plenty of times I've let my named StoryGuide characters crumple and die without going to BDTP. It's always your RIGHT to let stakes go through against you, even if BDTP would be necessary, even as a player. In fact, technically, if Character A wants to die, and Character B wants to kill you, there shouldn't even be a roll required. There's no drama there to the roll, unless Character C doesn't want A to die; in this case, the contest is between B and C, not between A and anyone else. A can, of course, throw bonus dice or assist B if he wants, but he's the stake now, not an "opponent."

Weirdly, the contest could even be B vs C, with the stakes being "if C wins, A kills C." It makes for some VERY fun contest designs, though.

3.) See some of the stuff for 2, above.

4.) This is a "Secret of the Unwalked Path" question, I take it? There's a couple of different answers to this one, potentially. The easiest one is that its damn hard to cover your tracks in a lot of wilderness situations, and most people just can't do it. Imagine trying to hide your footfalls in a mud-slick forest, on a sandy beach, or the like. So this is an example of a "spend one die from a pool to use an ability in an unusual way" Secret.

As Storyguide, I'd let anyone who wanted attempt to cover their tracks, but they'd have to go slowly, make Stealth checks, and I'd often apply one or more penalty dice to their attempt. Similarly, they'd run into all sorts of potential barriers and obstacles: "Uh oh, guys... muddy riverbank. We have to go around this to some place stonier, and lose some time." If anyone was pursuing you, it'd be a nightmare. But you could always make the attempt.

WITH this Secret, I'd let you run at top speed through the woods, crashing through brush, heading in any direction you liked, making only Woodscraft checks, and leaving traces that required beating your check to follow. In classic fantasy terms, its the druid or elf who is so nature-wise that they're difficult to track under any circumstances.


None of these are dumb questions, incidentally. TSOY's not always easy to master, especially if you're teaching yourself the system. The Forge is all about this kinda stuff. And there are always plenty of people willing to debate even the most minor of details. Watch how someone else has a totally different answer for the "Tracking" question, for instance.

-shadowcourt (aka josh)
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oliof
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Harald Wagener - Zurich, Switzerland


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« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2008, 05:37:58 PM »

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dindenver
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Don't Panic!


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« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2008, 09:03:04 PM »

Hi!
  OK, good to know.
  I wasn't trying to lock Bonus dice into one phase, just trying to understand the phases.
  But, I do want to be sure that I understand it well enough to explain it to new gamers.
  Josh called it, I am trying to understand why we need "Secret of the unwalked path." When it seems like Tracker vs guy covering tracks would be opposed roll, not a secret power.
  I kinda like Josh's answer, but am curious what others think.
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Dave M
Author of Legends of Lanasia RPG (Still in beta)
My blog
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Clinton R. Nixon
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« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2008, 08:17:41 AM »

Dave,

I got to this a few days late, but yeah, everyone else is pretty right here. Let's see if I can clarify more:

On IIEE, ignore it unless it's important to you. The central conceit in all my games is that you know how to do this stuff, and your group has its own rituals and ways to play that it brings to every game. Those should plug in to the Shadow of Yesterday. On a technical level, with bonus dice, they can come in at any time before final resolution. The bonus dice for chained actions, of course, come first, as do most ones from Secrets. You roll, and anyone can give you Gift Dice after the roll (they can before-hand, too, of course.) If you have a Secret to get bonus dice, or you want to spend from a pool, you can do that after the roll, too.

Josh is very right on the Secret of the Unwalked Path. One dirty secret about TSOY is that I wrote it over years, and my play style and the game's direction changed a lot over that time. This shows up most in the Secrets, which are all super-wonky and reflect a time in the game when it was way more crunchy. I still love them, though, and think they are very useful applied to the rules now. (For example, the Secret of Mighty Blow was supposed to be, "I hit hard with a weapon." Now people use it for all sorts of things, and that's fine, if your group likes that.)

Stakes: I think you'll find the game to play best if ordinary conflicts aren't about "does X happen or Y happen" and instead are about "does X happen." Bringing Down the Pain is the place to shift that around.
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Clinton R. Nixon
CRN Games
dindenver
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« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2008, 09:18:36 AM »

Hi!
  OK, so an ordinary conflict is really, does X happen or does nothing happen?

  Also, I am a little unclear, can a char have access to both species keys/secrets and culture keys/secrets? For instance the Maldor description seems to imply that don't accept non-humans in their culture, or is that a generalization and their are plenty of Maldor Elves, Goblins, Ratlings,etc..?

  I am going to make a cool Lifepath system for TSoY, any hints, tips, vital components?
  It will basically be a variation on this:
http://www.mvlan.net/~davidm/NuYork2020Skills.DOC
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Dave M
Author of Legends of Lanasia RPG (Still in beta)
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Free Demo
Clinton R. Nixon
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« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2008, 09:42:45 AM »

Dave,

So, another major part of TSOY is the concept of cultural cross-pollination. Your characters can learn any cultural secret they want, provided that someone will teach it to them. (The idea that you have to learn secrets from other people is often overlooked in TSOY, but it shouldn't be.) As for what you start with, if someone wanted to start with a cultural secret from another culture, I'd let them, but I'd want a reason. As for the non-human species, yes, they can definitely have cultural secrets, but yes, they are marginalized.
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Clinton R. Nixon
CRN Games
dindenver
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Don't Panic!


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« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2008, 09:44:08 PM »

Hi!
  Thanks Clinton. OK, one question I need to come back to though is IIEE.
  Do you think I have it right? The gaff is, our "local ritual" is to play by the book. As an example, our group never stunts unless playing a White Wolf Game. Then they do it as well as they can. Its usually pretty good Stunts, but that'sthe point. We do it because it is in the book.
  So, I need to describe IIEE in such a way that we are all on the same wavelength. Do you think SCAN works, or is it all wrong? The reason it is critical is that probably only half of my group will ever read the book. So, I need to make sure that both factions (readers and people that I explain it to) are all on the same page. So, um, whadya think?

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Dave M
Author of Legends of Lanasia RPG (Still in beta)
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Free Demo
Clinton R. Nixon
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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2008, 03:35:30 AM »

Dave,

Here's the deal: IIEE is what you already do, which means it's not much to explain. Your "SCAN" mnemonic is basically correct, but I think it could lead to some issues: there's no "setting stakes" in TSOY, and "narrate the action" reads to me like someone gets handed the right to narrate, which isn't correct, either. That last one's just me picking at it, though, so how about "state action" for S, and I say that sounds good, ok?
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Clinton R. Nixon
CRN Games
dindenver
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Don't Panic!


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« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2008, 08:51:38 AM »

Hi!
  Thanks for clarifying Clinton. I appreciate it so much. lol, this is my idea of game prep. I don't make maps or any other non-sense. I learn the rules as well as I can and make sure I understand how the Setting is supposed to work. And you have been super valuable on that front.
  Really, you are my hero!
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Dave M
Author of Legends of Lanasia RPG (Still in beta)
My blog
Free Demo
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