*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
September 15, 2014, 06:57:36 PM

Login with username, password and session length
Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Search:     Advanced search
275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 105 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: [1]
Print
Author Topic: [The Pool] Second try  (Read 2001 times)
Florian Edlbauer
Member

Posts: 7


« on: April 11, 2003, 05:00:57 AM »

In case anyone is interested, here's my second playtest report for The Pool. Me and my small group moved much closer to a compromise between our playing style and The Pool htis time, I believe.

Feel free to comment. Thanks!

-----------------------------------------------------

We were three people. One player had also played in the first session, the other was new to The Pool. He's a bit of a Minmaxer, always thinks he's playing against the GM, which is why we don't play with him often.

The adventure was this:

http://www.sjgames.com/pyramid/sample.cgi?266

I wrote up a three paragraph description of the celtic setting for the players as inspiration, where I named some 12-15 possible "professions/occupations", talked about magic, weapons & stuff. That seemed very useful to get the players starting their descriptions. However, I forgot to give a list of Irish names. Both players asked for one...

I did not set a word limit. Descriptions were quite long, but regarding keywords, there seemed to be as many/few as in shorter writeups. As they had to buy their ratings from the initial pool, it wouldn't have mattered anyway.

The session lasted a bit more than 3 hours. Almost one hour was spent on character creation. We finished the adventure without any rush nor boredom. It was enjoyed by all.

We rolled the dice five times. Players said they felt like we had rolled much more often. The first and the last rolls were failures, the other three successes. The player who had played the Pool before said he liked the fact that dice rolls seemed to have more importance than ever before, because you could actually lose something.

There was only one Monologue of Victory. We use the Rule of Three (invented by Paganini I think): When I don't want a MoV I bid up to three dice for their pool, effectively buying/haggling for the monologue... It wasn't necessary, though. As said before, we're quite conservative about the role of the GM. The one MoV though was very adequate. PCs had travelled to the Otherworld. They had been told not to step on the shore, but needed an apple from the orchards there. The scenario suggested trading something useful; after all, it's a GURPS scenario where you'd usually have quite a long equipment list. One of my players however succeeded in catching a fairy being in a fishing net and  released her only in exchange for the promise of an apple.

Bad luck that the final roll failed though. The Brown Men (enemies in the scenario) could be defeated when brought into contact with an apple. The players thought they had to feed the apple to them, so one tried to cut some of it secretly into the porridge they'd eat and failed his roll. When they saw his action and approached him, he took a good bite and spit it into their faces, which (according to the scenario) was enough to defeat them. I didn't even ask for another dice roll.
 
One problem that came up was that in The Pool, one player can run the game on his own and take the rolls for the whole group (at least while he ist lucky). The player who had played The Pool before did so. By approaching the other player directly I managed to involve him more later on though. In fact, he was the one who played the staring role during the climax.

A second problem was how to handle keywords and dice pool after the session. The rules state that your dice pool is replenished to 9 if its less. Question: If I spend lots of dice on new keywords, do I still get nine for next session? We finally ruled that your pool is replenished before "advancement", so that even when you failed in your last roll and lost many dice, you'd have 9 points, increase one motif to rating 2 or something like that and still have a pool of 5 to start next session with.
Logged
Florian Edlbauer
Member

Posts: 7


« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2003, 11:09:07 AM »

I've finally made my translation of the rules available, along with two short setting descriptions (to hand out to players for inspiration) and a character sheet I happen to be using.

Sorry: It's all in German.

http://www.edlbauer.de/pool
Logged
Cassidy
Member

Posts: 165


« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2003, 01:37:47 PM »

Quote from: Florian Edlbauer
One problem that came up was that in The Pool, one player can run the game on his own and take the rolls for the whole group (at least while he ist lucky). The player who had played The Pool before did so. By approaching the other player directly I managed to involve him more later on though. In fact, he was the one who played the staring role during the climax.


I'm wrestling with a similar problem with the current game I'm running. Four players, one is very narrative oriented, one is reasonably so and has played the Pool before. The other two are a little tongue-tied when it comes to guiding events (MOVs); one of them has played the Pool before also.

Unsuprisingly the narratively adept players tend to overshadow the others in terms of story contribution. The quieter players take a back seat and are largely reactive when it comes to contributing to the story.

Hopefully continued play will eventually coax the less vocal players out of their shells and story contribution will become shared more evenly amongst the players.

To be fair I think their apparent reluctance to flex their narrative muscles is down to system shock more than anything else. They just aren't used to playing a game where they get to decide "what happens".
Logged
Kenway
Member

Posts: 98


« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2003, 06:20:32 AM »

Florian:  "1 person narrating the whole group problem"
How about something like this:

Whenever it's a pretty big encounter, whoever wins the roll narrates last taking a "starring role," and the other players narrate first knowing they'll have a "supporting role."
eg. if the party is fighting an evil Wizard and his army of goblins.
Tthe supporting players will describe how they wear down the goblins, distract the wizard, etc., and the starring player will tie together their actions with his/her victorious action- how he was able to weave through the chaos of falling goblins and surprise the Wizard and kill him.

I'm thinking that an experienced player will tie together the party's contributions nicely, and less-experienced players will get help from the others' cues.
Logged
Cassidy
Member

Posts: 165


« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2003, 09:40:12 AM »

Quote from: Kenway
The supporting players will describe how they wear down the goblins, distract the wizard, etc., and the starring player will tie together their actions with his/her victorious action- how he was able to weave through the chaos of falling goblins and surprise the Wizard and kill him.

I'm thinking that an experienced player will tie together the party's contributions nicely, and less-experienced players will get help from the others' cues.


That is tricky to accomplish given that a Monologue of Victory is just that; a  Monologue. When you make a MOV you are supposed to keep your narrative short then hand narrative back to the GM.

I don't know how would you conduct a Monologue resolving a group scene yet still engage all the players in the narrative and make them feel involved.

I would be inclined to break the scene down into a number of smaller conflicts so that each player has more of a chance to contribute to the narrative in some way. It's important that everyone feels involved. Listening passively to someone elses Monologue that resolves an entire scene doesn't sound much fun to me.

Taking your Wizard/Goblin scenario, numerous conflicts could occur as the scene plays out. Each conflict would require a roll, each conflict providing an opportunity for each player to make a MOV.

For example, you could have conflicts such as...

* Avoiding getting killed by the 3 Goblins charging towards you.
* Trying to save your friend who has been overwhelmed by Goblin foes.
* Trying to take out the Wizard with your bow.
* Stopping the Wizard from getting away.
* Countering some spell the Wizard has cast or is trying to cast.
* Fighting an ally that the Wizard has ensorcelled.
Etc, etc.

That's how I would try to structure a group scene in the Pool.
Logged
Florian Edlbauer
Member

Posts: 7


« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2003, 12:52:05 PM »

Quote from: Kenway
I'm thinking that an experienced player will tie together the party's contributions nicely, and less-experienced players will get help from the others' cues.

Thanks for the idea. Frankly, I don't really see how Monologues of Victory could become dialogues, without changing the rules quite drastically.

Also, I found out that I have to be very, very careful coaxing players to be more active.

I resolved the problem as I would in any RPG: give the other player(s) tasks via NPCs, difficult tasks, so that they have to roll to solve them. Standard GM lore, I know, but possibly still the best thing to do.

This is probably similar to what you had in mind as well: Sub-divide challenges so everyone plays a part?
Logged
Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 16490


WWW
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2003, 12:57:14 PM »

Hi there,

I'm thinking that my thread The Pool: Dragons and Jasmine has some stuff in it that's relevant to the whole multiple-player multiple-MOV issue. There're some links in there to older useful threads too.

Best,
Ron
Logged
James V. West
Member

Posts: 567


WWW
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2003, 06:35:56 PM »

Quote
I don't really see how Monologues of Victory could become dialogues, without changing the rules quite drastically.


I always envisioned MOVs being fully in the MOVing player's ballpark, with give and take from the GM or other players as that player needs or desires. So, it could be a "dialogue", technically.
Logged

Pages: [1]
Print
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
Oxygen design by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!