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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 75 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Can I take a dip in your pool?  (Read 10661 times)
Mark Withers
Member

Posts: 18


« on: October 22, 2002, 07:42:19 AM »

The Birmingham(UK) university Roleplaying Society is planning a convention, roughly scheduled for the new year. Since this is a *massive* undertaking for a very inexperienced society we would appreciate whatever help we can get.

We will obviously be running all the usual commercial suspects of the day (D&D, White Wolf etc...) and a couple of indie games (Well, Deep 7 stuff since they've given us playtests in the past)

I was also very interested in showcasing my game, which, as I'm sure you've guessed by now, uses the resolution system of the pool.

Well, modified anti-pool, but I suspect that's a moot point.

James, do you want to be credited in the game? It will run close to a 64 page, laser printed, don't know how I'm gonna make it stick together kinda manuscript - to be given out to anyone who plays and probably 20 or 30 others. Eventually, I will get the game on the internet in some way (I haven't even looked into that yet so don't ask for a link)

At the moment, the game is my mostly in my head and chaotically organised in handwritten form, mostly consisting of scribbled ideas, in game notes, and sections of prose and poetry to evoke the setting. 64 pages is part guesswork and part forcing myself to get disciplined!

As things come together, I'll post the game piece by piece on the forum.

What does everyone think? Interested? Horrified?
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Matt Machell
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Posts: 477


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« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2002, 08:37:26 AM »

Bloody hell, talk about a small world.

I was chair of BURPS a few years ago (96-97). How's the old society going?

-Matt
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 10459


« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2002, 09:47:46 AM »

Anti-pool! Well, the only thing I'm interested in is how it plays. You will post here (or in Actual Play) an account of the play? I, for one, am dying to know how it goes.

Mike
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James V. West
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Posts: 567


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« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2002, 06:25:55 PM »

Mark:

That sounds awesome!

Yes, please credit me as creator of The Pool and credit Mike Holmes for devising the Anti-Pool variant. Proper credit where credit is do is really all I ask of anyone for this game. Proper credit would include my name (James V. West) and my website address (www.randomordercreations.com).

Easy, huh?

And the other thing is you HAVE to post here about your game. I mean, you just have to. Especially since you'll be the first to try Anti-Pool (he is the first, right?).
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 10459


« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2002, 07:25:09 AM »

Quote from: James V. West
(he is the first, right?).

As far as I'm aware, and I've been keeping my eye on it.

Mike
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Mark Withers
Member

Posts: 18


« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2002, 01:50:27 AM »

Well, I'm behind on the game already (typical isn't it?) since I've had an ill girlfriend to take care of for the last two days.

Firstly, Hi Matt. The Society is live and well, despite threatening to die out completely in the year before D&D3 came out! We've been recreating BURPS from the ground up, and have just realised that we're sitting on a bunch of unspent society grants. We're looking to spend ~£800 on this convention, most of which we already have, so admission fees will be so small you'll hardly notice them.

As for the game, the provisional title is Dragons and Dreamers, an explicit homage to the author Samuel R Delany. The game consists of a spread of three settings, each incredibly different, but bound by the themes of civilisation, barbarism and change. The kicker is that players pick the same character core for each setting, making changes for each, to learn more about the character and the nature of change. The inspiration comes from Delany's series Neveryon, and his realisation that the reflection of a reflection is a very different thing to the original. As I'm sure you guessed, the three settings allow me to play with the idea of reflections, since the first character is the original, the second his reverse and the third is the reverse of the second character.

I'm aware that I haven't explained that well, since it's a concept that has very little meaning without analogy. Alas, my Friday morning brain lacks a little sharpness, so you'll have to make do with the hints and vagaries.

Mike and James will be dully credited, although in writing my idea seems even more ambitious than it did in my head, so I'm sure that many other names will start cropping up as invaluable helpers.

Any input will be appreciated, since there are just so many games designers that I have the utmost respect for here.

Thanks for listening to my ideas!
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Matt Machell
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Posts: 477


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« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2002, 06:50:25 AM »

Quote
Firstly, Hi Matt. The Society is live and well, despite threatening to die out completely in the year before D&D3 came out! We've been recreating BURPS from the ground up, and have just realised that we're sitting on a bunch of unspent society grants. We're looking to spend ~£800 on this convention, most of which we already have, so admission fees will be so small you'll hardly notice them.


Sounds good. I should imagine the Guild is still playing silly buggers when it comes to room bookings and losing the games library ;-). Best of luck with the Con. If you want non-uni persons turning up, I can probably get some Alumni along (I'm still in Brum).

-Matt
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James V. West
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Posts: 567


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« Reply #7 on: October 26, 2002, 01:20:47 AM »

The idea sounds awesome. I've read some Delany, but not the Neveryon sories. This makes me want to check it out.

The concept of having the same character core is a cool one too. I've never played a game like that, though I've seen a couple. Didn't Amazing Engine use that kind of char gen?

Anyway, good luck with the project and keep us posted!
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Mark Withers
Member

Posts: 18


« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2002, 08:23:54 AM »

Here are a few hints to keep you posted on the progress of Dragons and Dreamers. I plan to present the settings in a deliberately vague manner so that individual Narrators can decide upon the details of their own campaign. A few well-developed ideas will be included for each setting for those people who like to start gaming immediately.

Overriding themes:
Civilisation
Barbarism
Change

Premise:
“The reflection of a reflection is not the same thing as the original”

The settings need not be connected by genre; the first could be a medieval court intrigue game, the second a tightly insular mutant academy and the third, space opera style trading and adventure, for example. In fact, there is a lot to be gained from genre swapping in this way...

Below are the themes of the settings, which Narrators use as a framework for designing worlds and running adventures.

Setting 1
Themes:
Constancy
Power
Facades
Slavery
Enemies:
Incompetence
Good people who have lost the will to fight

Setting 2
Themes:
Outsiders infringing upon your traditions
Family unity
Pride in self-reliance
Morals of necessity
Enemies:
Outsiders who profit from destruction
Those who’s pride obscures their reasoning

Setting 3
Themes:
Time of personal freedom
Discovery
Common goals
Artistry
Enemies:
Opportunism
Too rapid advances
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Paul Czege
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 2341


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« Reply #9 on: October 30, 2002, 10:02:23 AM »

Hey Mark,

You've got some cool stuff going on with the Themes and Enemies for the settings. They're nicely compelling, I think, fertile ground for creation of conflicts and setting detail through play. So I can't help but believe that the Premise of any game based on your settings is going to be very much defined by the conflict between the Themes and Enemies, and not hardly at all by your over-arching notions of reflections. You might feel otherwise, but from my perspective this isn't a bad thing at all. It seems to me that lots of folks who have difficulty formulating Narrativist Premises might benefit from your Themes and Enemies approach.

Paul
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My Life with Master knows codependence.
And if you're doing anything with your Acts of Evil ashcan license, of course I'm curious and would love to hear about your plans
James V. West
Member

Posts: 567


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« Reply #10 on: October 30, 2002, 06:40:50 PM »

I agree with Paul although I'm still intrigued by the dualities idea. I love dualities and have plans for exploring the concept myself next year.

Thanks for the update. Your idea is whetting my appetite for more!
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Mark Withers
Member

Posts: 18


« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2002, 02:15:09 AM »

Quote from: Paul Czege


You've got some cool stuff going on with the Themes and Enemies for the settings. They're nicely compelling, I think, fertile ground for creation of conflicts and setting detail through play. So I can't help but believe that the Premise of any game based on your settings is going to be very much defined by the conflict between the Themes and Enemies, and not hardly at all by your over-arching notions of reflections.

Paul


Yeah, you could be right. I certainly want players and Narrators to be focussed on the details of the individual settings, so I tried to include things that would inspire interesting conflicts. I don't imagaine the players will lose sight of the premise, which I suppose is more of a motto or tagline for the game, since it will have such an impact on the creation and development of thier characters.

Thanks for your input guys!

I probably won't refer to the reflections thing as the premise anymore - it doesn't seem quite right to me. I can kind of imagine it as part of the cover though, "the reflection of a reflection is not always the same as the original"...

My next post, when I find time for it, will start to explain the title of the game; what the dragons represent and the importance of dreams in how the game progresses and the settings link together in play.

Untill next time!

P.S. Are any of you guys interested in getting a playtest package? I could certainly use the feedback, and the pressure of producing something readable!
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