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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 50 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Matchmaker the rpg  (Read 3882 times)
lumpley
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« on: November 29, 2001, 08:06:00 PM »

Matchmaker

a roleplaying game for four players

So okay, four players.  One is Cupid.  Two are the Destined Lovers, and it's Cupid's job to get them together.  The fourth is Everybody Else in the World.

Character Creation

Cupid: get a sheet of paper.  This is your Quiver of Tricks. Write some tricks down on it, like 'you meet in a bar' and 'what's your sign?'  Or else doodle little hearts with arrows through them on it.  Whatever.

Destined Lovers: go into the other room together.  Come back when you've made up three things about your characters: What do we have in common?  What one thing could you do that would turn me off to you forever?  What one thing could I do that would turn you off to me forever?

Everybody Else in the World: call for pizza or read the TV Guide or something.  But don't sweat it.

The Game

Cupid, you win when the Destined Lovers fall in love.  This happens when they discover, in character, in play, the thing that they have in common.  (The players already know.  Your job is to get their characters there.  Since you don't know, it'll be tricky.)

Destined Lovers, you always win, no matter what.  You'll have more fun if you make Cupid and Everybody Else work for it, though.

Everybody Else in the World, you win when one of your characters replaces one of the Destined Lovers in the affection of the other. This happens when a. you figure out what the Destined Lovers have in common before they get to it in play, b. you make one of your characters have it in common with them too, and c. you manage to make it so that one of the Destined Lovers discovers the in common thing with you instead.  Got it?

Responsibilities

Cupid is responsible for:
a. Setting the scene;
b. Introducing things that happen;
c. Introducing NPCs; and
d. Suggesting in-character things for the Destined Lovers to say.

The Destined Lovers are responsible for:
a. Playing their characters, and
b. Introducing NPCs.

Everybody Else is responsible for:
Playing all the NPCs that Cupid or the Destined Lovers introduce.

"You meet in a bar," Cupid says.  "Robin, you oughta say 'What's your sign?' to Pat."
"What's your sign?" Robin says.  "I don't know why I said that, you must get sick of people coming up to you like this."
"Actually, yes," Pat says.  "Excuse me, I have to go away now."
"Uh oh," Cupid says.  "Okay.  A guy with a gun bursts through the door."
"On the floor!  Now!" Everybody Else says.  "Pat, I warned you!"
"You know this guy?" Robin says.  "I get between the gun guy and Pat, you know, to use my body as a shield."
"Oh please," Pat says.  "I shove Robin aside.  Come on now, Mitchell. Put the gun down.  I know you never load it."

And so on.

Mechanics, which god forbid you do without

If anybody thinks that the outcome of something is uncertain, here's what.  Every player does this.  Look at the situation and choose one factor that you think could determine the outcome, or one possible outcome, or something that makes sense in the moment.  Write it on a scrap of paper and toss it in a hat.  Somebody, pull one out.  That's what, and whoever's scrap of paper it is gets to narrate.

"I shoot the gun!" Everybody Else says.  "I hit Pat!"
"No way," Pat says.  "Let's roll for it."
Pat writes on a paper: Mitchell never loads his gun.  Everybody Else writes: I do too. Robin writes: I'm still kind of in the way.  Cupid writes: Mitchell is too upset and misses. They put them in the hat, pull one out, and things go from there.

Design Notes

Silly I know.  Actually I just like having a section called Design Notes.

-lumpley Vincent

[ This Message was edited by: lumpley on 2001-11-29 23:09 ]
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joshua neff
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« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2001, 08:15:00 PM »

I (wait for it) love this game! (Rimshot, please!)

No seriously, that's brilliant.
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--josh

"You can't ignore a rain of toads!"--Mike Holmes
Zak Arntson
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« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2001, 08:15:00 PM »

Your resolution mechanic is the best!!  But you should note that everyone gets to see and discuss what they're sticking in the hat (so you can get "He forgets to load the gun" "I do not" exchanges, hee!)

I'd love to play anything with that mechanic.

I'd like to see how Matchmaker works during play.  Problems I can think of off the bat:

* Requiring 4 players. That could be a drag.  
* Everyone Else. Let's hope the Destined Lovers don't introduce a zillion NPCs!
* Cupid only gets to setup and suggest? I'd like to see more play on the Cupid's side.

Anyhow, that's an awesome game.  You need to put that up on a website or something ..



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Paul Czege
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« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2001, 09:01:00 PM »

Vincent...it's awesome!

The apportionment of control over aspects of the game to the various roles is pretty damn inspired. At first, the Cupid player seems like the GM, but then you realize that it's essentially a competition between the Cupid and the Everybody Else. The Destined Lovers fulfill the challenge management role of the typical GM, while lacking the ability to frame scenes! It's really great.

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
Matt Machell
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« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2001, 01:31:00 AM »

It sounds hilarious!

My thought was actually, this'll appeal to many people who don't know jack about RPGs. It's has lots in common with a party game, for example. Easy to grasp premise too.


Matt


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Jeffrey Straszheim
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« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2001, 07:41:00 AM »

Why?Huh?

Why didn't you post this before Thanksgiving?  I was in town with my wife and my parents.  There were four of us!!!

Talk about a great way to drag the parents into roleplaying.

:smile:

Anyhow, neat game.

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Jeffrey Straszheim
Ron Edwards
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« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2001, 11:14:00 AM »

Brilliant, Vincent ... except just as with "Soap," I'm not sure the Win mechanic needs to be there. It seems to contradict the idea that the lovers always succeed.

Perhaps a point-scoring system so that whoever introduces the most COMPLICATIONS wins? Rather than disrupts the romance entirely?

Best,
Ron

P.S. Or I could have just read the whole thing wrong. This was a snap-shot posting, I'm afraid. (Not really an excuse)
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Gordon C. Landis
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« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2001, 12:53:00 PM »

I see the "win" clause here as describing what the objectives of the particular players are - giving them a motivation for the way in which they participate, not really providing a way to "acheive victory" in the game.

But maybe I've just got the whole Gamist discussion stuff on the brain.
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lumpley
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« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2001, 03:53:00 PM »

Thank you everybody for your very kind words.  Y'all are awesome.

Zak:

1. I suppose you could have a fifth player play half of Everybody Else in the World.  Beyond that, you're right, it could be a drag.

2. You're right, let's hope.  I think I'll put in some stuff to Everybody Else about how you're never obligated to have a conversation with yourself, and if anybody says you should you can give them a dirty look and summarize it instead.

3. Ah, good, I'll be more clear.  Cupid gets total scene control, starting, stopping, cutting, introducing stuff, everything scene-wise a GM usually does.  I'll write that.  I'll also add some stuff about how if it seems to be going well, let it go, but if it's not, step in.  "Robin, your taxi arrives, so that's that.  You happen to bump into each other two years later on a ferry boat..."

Ron, Gordon:

Gordon, you're right.  I could've said: Cupid, your goal is to get the Destined Lovers to fall in love, Destined Lovers, your goal is to goof off and make it fun, Everybody Else, your goal is to get one of the Destined Lovers to fall in love with you.

When I say that the Destined Lovers always win, I mean they shouldn't worry about whether they fall in love with one another or not.

If I were serious about the whole 'win' thing, I'd assign points like this: if the Destined Lovers fall in love, Cupid gets 2 points; if one of the Destined Lovers falls in love with an NPC, Everybody Else gets 2 points, and either way both Destined Lovers get 1 point.  But I'm not serious, I just mean you're happy if.

-lumpley Vincent
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lumpley
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« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2001, 05:46:00 PM »

You can see the revised game at

http://www.septemberquestion.org/lumpley/matchmaker.html

So that's good.

-lumpley Vincent
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Bret
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« Reply #10 on: December 04, 2001, 04:10:00 PM »

I agree with Zak that the resolution mechanic is amazing. The rest of the game isn't exactly my cup of tea though it does sound fun. :wink: I'll have to try running a game with that mechanic sometime, though.

Peace,
Bret
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