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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 51 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Quartet  (Read 1396 times)
Jared A. Sorensen
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Posts: 1463

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« on: October 04, 2001, 04:02:00 PM »

Okay, bad idea time.

Four humans from earth (the players) are taken aboard a huge starship, given crazy phat technology and powers by a group of benevolent aliens and charged with the mission of saving the Known Universe from A Horrible Menace.
In order not to alert the earthlings, each person aboard the ship is duplicated* and the dupe is sent back down to earth to "fill in" while the player character is gone. In order to make sure that the player character is kept informed of the events of his life, the double's memories are recorded and fed into the PC at regular intervals.

Pretty standard gamer wish fufillment. Here's where it gets nutty.

First of all, you play yourself. But the trick is, you play both yourself (up there) and your duplicate (down here). In order to do this, each player keeps a journal of real-life stuff that happens in between games. This translates to stuff that has happened to your double.

Your "real" self (you, ie: the one playing the game, ie: the one fighting the horrible menace in deep space) can draw upon events from this journal in order to gain bonuses to skill rolls (or something).

- J

*Pseudoscientists may ask why not just dupe the 4 humans to begin with. The answer is something suitably obscure but sensible that I haven't thought up yet.
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jared a. sorensen / www.memento-mori.com
Galfraxas
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Posts: 75


« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2001, 06:33:00 PM »

Just a thought:

What if the player characters were the black sheep of society? Like gamers, trekkies, and stuff like that. I think that would be kinda fun. Or maybe the super powerful alien beings that create the clones get the personalities wrong... Maybe a clone of a jock accidently gets the personality of a die-hard Rifts GM. :grin:

Galfraxas


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Jared A. Sorensen
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« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2001, 08:38:00 PM »

What if the player characters were the black sheep of society?

Well, the PC is you, so it very well may be.

The thing is, it's a way of allowing your real life to creep into the life of your game character (which is also you) without having the two diverge.

Which is to say, if you play yourself in a game, it's only really "you" until the game begins. Then it diverges into "you as a vampire" or "you as an occult investigator" or "you as a superhero."

In this game, what you had for breakfast is what your character (er, its double anyway) had for breakfast.

Post-crypt:
Inspiration for this idea comes from two things: wanting to make a game with a set number of protagonists* and making a game where the in-game player/character divide was used as part of the game.

*I'm hoping that Spaceship Zero does this (although it probably won't) by having the players portray one of a number of "set" PC's -- no character creation, as such. Flies in the face of the typical RPG, where character = king.

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indie game design from beyond the grave

[ This Message was edited by: Jared A. Sorensen on 2001-10-05 00:40 ]
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Zak Arntson
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« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2001, 09:42:00 AM »

I think playing the body doubles would be funny, too.

What if the clones had to go through daily life, but weren't nearly so good as the originals?

You could tie in the player-journal ... "how would my day have gone differently if I were a naive, fresh-from-the-vat clone?"  Remember the robot stand-in from The Last Starfighter?


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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 10459


« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2001, 12:00:00 PM »

Quote

On 2001-10-05 00:38, Jared A. Sorensen wrote:
*I'm hoping that Spaceship Zero does this (although it probably won't) by having the players portray one of a number of "set" PC's -- no character creation, as such. Flies in the face of the typical RPG, where character = king.

Dude, I reserve the role of the dark and brooding self-centered renegade type whose lack of ethics really rankles with the rest of the ship's crew, but who is still useful to the point that they just can't seem to get rid of him.
:smile:

Mike
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 10459


« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2001, 12:03:00 PM »

Quote

On 2001-10-04 20:02, Jared A. Sorensen wrote:

*Pseudoscientists may ask why not just dupe the 4 humans to begin with. The answer is something suitably obscure but sensible that I haven't thought up yet.


As whazisnam mentioned above, the duplicates aren't quite up to snuff. They are definitely clumsier. Imperfect copies and all that, y'know. The aliens need the real McCoy, so to speak.

Mike
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Nathan
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« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2001, 01:40:00 PM »

Almost sounds like someone saw "GalaxyQuest" not too long ago...........

Funny idea!

Thanks,
Nathan
nathan@mysticages.com
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Paul Czege
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2001, 07:24:00 PM »

Hey Jared,

The concept is cool. After Scott's Sorcerer scenario, my very dark scenario for The Pool, and truly horrible world events, I've been looking around for a game system that features a little humor. Unfortunately, a lot of game humor comes from players putting the shaft to each other, and it's not a style of humor I'm enamored of. Quartet seems skewed toward situational humor, so even though I think it'll be harder than you expect to create humor-facilitative mechanics for it, I'm excited to see what you come up with.

each player keeps a journal of real-life stuff that happens in between games

This is the one part I rather dislike. It feels like busy work. And the narrative bang from the time investment seems like it would be fairly low. How about allowing the player to "cut scene" to narrate an event in the life of his double for a bonus?

Paul
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