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Author Topic: Capes play at Gamestorm!  (Read 4542 times)
Joel P. Shempert
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« on: April 02, 2008, 06:34:42 PM »

Hi, all. I just ran my favorite Capes game ever, at Portland/Vancouver's Gamestorm con. I posted it up on Storygames.

I encountered some nuances, both good and bad, that I hadn't before. I mentioned some of them in the play report, but briefly:

1) The positioning around the table (like Hero-Hero-Hero-Villain-Villain instead of H-V-H-V-H) makes a huge difference to the pacing and flow. Not good or bad necessarily, just different.

2) Characters affecting conflicts from different locales runs pretty smooth and slick. None of the instances felt forced or "acting for the sake of actin."

3) On the other hand, the Mind-reader seems like a hard power set to play. A lot of actions end jup being repetitive, since there aren't a lot of ways to physically affect a conflict with mental powers (sure, there are a lot of possible descriptions but they all ende upbeing some flavor of "I mess with your mind!")

4) All the Heroes got the story tokens for once! Usually it's the villains that reap the first crop as they let the heroes beat them at their initial goals. But this time the Heroes took away the prize and saved the day handily (though still ended up with a deadlocked conflict over what really mattered).

5) Speaking of which, we had a deadlocked conflict that was pretty cool. It was a goal for a hero to prove himself, so leaving the question undecided at the end of the "Issue" left the story on a nice, angsty note. I'm confused on one thing, though: the rules say a conflict is Deadlocked when it is tied and cannot be resolved on further turns. In our case, this was true because our con slot was over in like, 3 minutes. But how could this happen normally? You can always stake, split, and roll dice up and down. So how would you ever encounter an unbreakable tie?

6) I actually got a Capes game without any Silly! I've never played a session that had an even, earnest tone without goofiness or parody creeping in. But I asked my fellow players for it, and I got it! Rock on!

All in all, this was a blast! I know I always say this, but thanks once again Tony, for designing such a wicked cool game!

Peace,
-Joel
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Story by the Throat! Relentlessly pursuing story in roleplaying, art and life.
TonyLB
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« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2008, 04:29:17 AM »

5) Speaking of which, we had a deadlocked conflict that was pretty cool. It was a goal for a hero to prove himself, so leaving the question undecided at the end of the "Issue" left the story on a nice, angsty note. I'm confused on one thing, though: the rules say a conflict is Deadlocked when it is tied and cannot be resolved on further turns. In our case, this was true because our con slot was over in like, 3 minutes. But how could this happen normally? You can always stake, split, and roll dice up and down. So how would you ever encounter an unbreakable tie?
All sixes, and all players who care have staked to the max.  I saw it happen once in playtesting, and firmly expect never to see it again ... but it is mathematically possible.
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Just published: Capes
New Project:  Misery Bubblegum
Joel P. Shempert
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« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2008, 09:24:24 AM »

Gotcha. I guess that's a key factor: there has to be a player willingness to stake and split.

Anyway, I think we've found a fruitful use of the Deadlocked condition: when a tied conflict "feels" (for whatever reason, like it's the last conflict on the table at the end of a con game) right to resolve in a stalemate. We were all pretty jazzed about our angsty ending. Smiley

Peace,
-Joel
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Story by the Throat! Relentlessly pursuing story in roleplaying, art and life.
TonyLB
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« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2008, 09:29:44 AM »

Yeah, the question of conflicts that shouldn't clearly resolve has fuelled a lot of my design thinking since finishing Capes.  I think it's very fruitful territory.
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Just published: Capes
New Project:  Misery Bubblegum
Joel P. Shempert
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Posts: 451


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« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2008, 10:08:58 AM »

Totally. To be honest, most of your inquiries into the subject have been making my head spin. But I'm eager to see the eventual results.
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Story by the Throat! Relentlessly pursuing story in roleplaying, art and life.
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