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Author Topic: [Dark Days]My core concept is dumb, please help.  (Read 1228 times)
chance.thirteen
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Posts: 210


« Reply #15 on: November 30, 2009, 02:29:15 AM »

If you wanted the darkness to be non-sentient, my thought was similar to ones mentioned before. Something about the nature of returning from death brings back this manifestation of darkness. Maybe it is the "sin" of not wanting to be dead, or of violating the natural cycle of life and death.

Sin is a great term, though I use it not in the specific sense that it is a debt owed to God.

You could think of it as the destruction slated to the character at death, which given a larger world can grow, and attract destructive elements. Instead of being used up, it can merge with these things and grow.

The characters are charged with powers because their very existence is some sort of symbiosis with it. Lich like you could say. Likewise, it's not that the darkness made a deal with them, it's that they had to willfully become whatever it is they become to return. They might be conflicted or sickened by it, they may not have understood the consequences of their actions, but it's all them. They had a choice between going into the light, or into the nothing, or in grabbing onto this darkness, and forcing it to give them something, anything, so they could continue to go on.

I am big on human choice, and human evil.

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northerain
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Posts: 94


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« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2009, 11:40:46 AM »

I remember about 20 years ago, this movie called Flatliners, where they college kids died and came back to life, and brought something back with them. I was pretty excited until I realized that what they brought back was a bunch of guilt-induced hallucinations that somehow had the power to bust up Kiefer Sutherland's face. Nice going Joel Schuemacker. Anyway, I always thought that it would be cooler if they brought back something more sinister and supernatural than just repressed guilt.

Sticking with the idea that Darkness is non-sentient, maybe its just the soup between life and afterlife. You pass through it one-way and there you go. You're not supposed to come back to the land of the living once you're in it, so when you do,you bring back some supernatural stuff with you. The supernatural stuff could be some sort of powers, or impossible knowledge, or even the ability to see other supernatural stuff (like in that movie Constantine).

The thing here would be to let the player decide why the character comes back, through out other stuff they didn't count on, like normal people that look like monsters to them, or newfound abilities, and see what they do with it.

Also, sticking with your idea about misery spreading; maybe using their powers or whatever causes bad things to happen. Instead of energy points being spent, the character throws out bad karma as a by-product of using their abilities. This would have one of two effects on the character: they would feel terrible about using their powers, or get over it and start to become not very good people.

Happy Holidays,

Ken

Ken, I think that's what I'll be going with. I knew how the Darkness works, I just couldn't find a way to describe it so that it didn't sound corny. I think the idea that Darkness is just a byproduct of them returning and not something that helps them come back is much much better.

I wouldn't want to boggle the game down with extra mechanics that solidify that using Darkness is bad. I think the characters themselves pull that off very well on their own. For some reason in the playtests, I managed to have everyone make terrible choices simply because there was nothing else they could do.




Quote
Dark Days is a game about people with supernatural powers, that investigate and battle horrors in a world filled with the occult and the supernatural.

Are they magicians? No. They're people that died and then came back from the dead imbued with powers. Where do the powers come from?

You want to make this idea really sing, you should stop right there. Let the question be answered through the mechanics and through player choices.

I kinda have been doing it for a while. In the playtests the Darkness is just a voice that keeps whispering in their heads and nothing more. I guess I needed to solidify that in my brain.

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northerain
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Posts: 94


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« Reply #17 on: December 01, 2009, 10:04:23 PM »

I took your feedback and my own conclusions and I updated the text in the draft.
This is a short text taken from the character creation chapter, defining what the characters are.

Wayward/Revenants (I can't choose a name to call characters. I know it's a very WW-thing to do, but I get tired of saying ''those guys'' or ''the characters''). I'd love any ideas or feedback on these 2 names.
In Dark Days, you play the role of a Wayward.
You are one of the dead that came back. You wanted something so bad that not even death could keep you from returning to it.
You came back from the dead but you brought something with you. It?s somewhere deep inside of you, a voice in your head that asks you to do terrible things. Sometimes you have to listen to it. The Darkness inside of you is constantly tormenting, baiting you, trying to make you do things that will push you deeper into Hell and allow it to take over your body, make you an instrument of entropy and destruction.

You used to be someone. A person with a life that resembled ??normal??. You had a wife, maybe kids. You held down a job. You had ??hobbies?? and ??acquaintances??. Then things started to go wrong.
Your wife got sick. Cancer. Your son disappeared from the playground when you weren?t looking. Your dog, your only real friend got hit by a truck. Your house burned down and you lost your job. Whatever it was that befell you, your life went down the shitter, along with a part of you, the shallow, shitty part of you.
This part, we call Darkness. The entropy of shitty luck. The disease in your loved one?s lungs, the black van that killed your son, the well dressed guy that seduced your girlfriend. The accident around the corner, waiting to leave you paralyzed.

This is Darkness at play. It touches you and turns everything to crap. It makes you one of its own.

Then you died. Funny how things can always get worse. You have no idea just how bad things can get. You didn?t go towards the light, no pitchforks were waiting for you, all you got was Darkness. You didn?t understand it, but you caught a glimpse of it when you crawled out of your grave, gasping for air, your heart pumping again, nerves on fire. What you saw in that dark place pushed you to return to the world of the living, it reminded you of things you left undone, things you needed to take care of. So you came back.
You?re something else now, you can do things taken from someone?s nightmares. You?re more resilient, you can make people do things, you look at a guy funny and he wets his pants. And you?re not alone.

A group of Wayward is called an Enclave, much like a group of Crows is called a murder.
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Ken
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Posts: 196


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« Reply #18 on: December 03, 2009, 01:41:16 AM »


Wayward/Revenants (I can't choose a name to call characters. I know it's a very WW-thing to do, but I get tired of saying ''those guys'' or ''the characters''). I'd love any ideas or feedback on these 2 names.
In Dark Days, you play the role of a Wayward.

Yeah, it can be tough to break out of the gravity of White Wolf when creating a modern horror(ish) game.

Of the too character titles you came up with I definitely prefer Revenants. I also thought of Returners; it sounded kind of cool, and has that interesting made-up quality (mostly because its made up).

The other title that I thought might fit was Shadows. This could tie into your high concept. When the characters return they look like they did but lack certain human qualities (and more embody the few qualities that drove them back to life), and thus are shadows of their former selves.

Just an idea. Thoughts?
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Ken

10-Cent Heroes; check out my blog:
http://ten-centheroes.blogspot.com

Sync; my techno-horror 2-pager
http://members.cox.net/laberday/sync.pdf
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