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[DitV Town] Two Forks - My first town - comments please

Started by Brother Seth, April 19, 2006, 03:18:30 PM

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Brother Seth

Two Forks

People -
Millicent Atwater, the daughter of William and Alice
William Atwater, father of Millicent
Alice Atwater, mother of Millicent
Martin Atwater, younger bother of Millicent
Caleb Wilburn, Town Steward
Margaret Wilburn, Caleb's wife

There's Something Wrong In This Town...

Millicent Atwater is 3 months pregnant.

She's 16, and her over-protective father, William Atwater, hasn't approved of her starting to court yet.

The baby's father is the town Steward, Caleb Wilburn.

The Steward Caleb is 31, and feels he is due a second wife which he has not earned.

The Steward Caleb is rather new to the job, having become Steward one year ago when the old Steward died of consumption.

Millicent's father William wants to replace the Steward Caleb feeling he can do a better job, and he also resents that he himself wasn't chosen when the old Steward died.

Millicent's father William behaves badly towards his daughter Millicent since he feels his she's now damaged, and he resents that's she's taken up with the man who holds the position he covets.

Millicent's mother, Alice Atwater, sides with the daughter Millicent, but only until the baby is born because she wants to care for the baby herself. Once the baby is born, she plans to turn Millicent out.

Millicent wants to marry the town Steward Caleb as his second wife.

The Steward's current wife, Margaret Wilburn, doesn't approve as her husband Caleb was cheating on her and she feels that he's acting above himself.

The instigator and helpful soul driving this is Millicent's little brother, Martin. He's a troublemaker. He's got the demons in him, and is always making sure everyone knows everything.

Sequence of events
Caleb initiated relations with Millicent
Martin made sure to distract their parents often so the couple could be alone
The couple became intimate, and Martin often spied on them
Alice noticed first, but she didn't act because she felt William was too stifling by not allowing Millicent to court
Margaret became suspicious of Caleb's change in manner and confronts him, but he convinces her he's innocent
Millicent became pregnant
Alice recognized the changes in Millicent and confronted her, after Martin loudly asked Millicent about her discomfort
Millicent began to confess her love of Caleb and their plans to wed once Caleb was approved for a second wife
Martin hurried out to the barn and told his father William that Alice wanted him for something
William overheard the conversation and burst into the room demanding to know details
Knowing that Millicent's next stop would be Caleb's, Martin ran to Margaret and said Caleb needed her
Margaret overhears Millicent's tearful confession and Calebs' reassurances, but doesn't immediately confront them
Just as she's starting to show, the Dogs ride into town

Steward Caleb feels he deserves a second wife he does not merit
Millicent feels that her love for Caleb makes it all right
William feels he would be a better Steward than Caleb
William feels that his daughter should remain a little girl forever
Alice feels feels she would be a better mother than Millicent, and William would make a better Steward
Margaret likes being the wife of a Steward, and fears this will endanger that position as she's heard the talk

Steward Caleb has taken to courting Millicent on the sly
Millicent has been receptive to Steward Caleb's advances
William has stifled Millicent to the point that she's acted on her needs
Alice has counseled William to be lenient on Millicent so the baby will be born at home
William has taken to treating Millicent badly
William has started talking about how this shows how he would make a better Steward

Steward Caleb is guilty of both Faithlessness and Sex, for he has been neglecting his duties as Steward in pursuing, wooing, and screwing Millicent, a sin in and of itself

Millicent is guilty of the sin of Sex, for she allowed Caleb into her bed

William is guilty of Disunity, for using this as a reason to preach for a change of Stewardship and for his treatment of his daughter

William is also very close to the sin of Violence, for he will attack Steward Caleb at the slightest provocation

Alice is guilty of Deceit and Disunity, for concealing the true nature of her interest in the pregnancy and her post-pregnancy plans for her daughter

Martin is guilty of Disunity for purposefully enabling all of the confrontations

Demonic Attacks:
The demons simply saw to it that Millicent got pregnant when she was with Caleb, and then
   made sure to whisper in Martin's ear whenever anyone was misbehaving

What Everyone Wants:
Steward Caleb Wilburn: Wants the Dogs to grant him the second wife and legitimize his relationship with Millicent, but it's more about a trophy than love

Millicent Atwater: Wants the same thing Steward Caleb wants. She really loves him

William Atwater: Wants the Dogs to remove Steward Caleb as Steward and install him, and censure Caleb for ruining his daughter

Alice Atwater: Wants the Dogs the send Steward Caleb away, install William as Steward, and then leave so she can complete her plan

Margaret Wilburn: Wants the Dogs to send Millicent away and make Caleb return to his Steward duties and to make William shut up.

Martin Atwater: Wants the Dogs to go away and leave things alone



Before I dig into this I have one question.  Are you deliberately experimenting with the Town Creation rules because the above doesn't exactly follow them?  It seems you have every townsperson involved in every category, which isn't the norm.


Brother Seth

No, it just ended up that way. I started with the one thread (Millicent being pregnant by the Town Steward) and everything else followed from there.

Brother Seth

Brother Seth

The bit with Martin was added towards the end of the process.

Brother Seth

As far as the town creation procedure, I didn't really follow it. It's one of the reasons I'm seeking comment. How important is it to follow the procedure? I've played this game once at a convention, and I'm very intrigued (I bought two copies).

Brother Seth

My thought was to provide multiple levels depending on how deeply the group investigated.

Adam Cerling

I doubt anyone can say whether it's important to follow town creation: but I think those who've run the game can certainly say it is very effective to follow town creation.

That said, I think you've followed it close enough that your Dogs will have plenty to do in this town. Realize, of course, that they will not judge the same way that you've written things down. They may decide that the only Pride is Caleb's, that he seduced Millie, and she and her father are innocents dishonored. Or they might lay it on William's back, saying he drove his daughter into Caleb's arms. They could blame Martin, or Alice, or even the steward's wife who you happen to think is innocent!

And any of these outcomes is, of course, just fine.

This is why you don't need to give Pride and Injustice and Sin to everyone in the town. Once the Dogs get the scent, nobody's safe from their judgment. Everyone gets touched.
Adam Cerling
In development: Ends and Means -- Live Role-Playing Focused on What Matters Most.

Brother Seth

Well, I've been running games for 26 years, but this is quite a gear change. Designing scenarios without solutions.


I strongly recommend the town creation rules in the book.



Quote from: Brother Seth on April 23, 2006, 03:28:27 PM
Well, I've been running games for 26 years, but this is quite a gear change. Designing scenarios without solutions.

And that is one of the neat and revolutionary things about Dogs in the Vineyard.  Solutions get in the way of what the players are there to do, which is to come up with their own solutions, and then live with the consequences thereof.  As Vincent has noted, you, as GM, are not the judge, only the prosecutor.  The players get to be judge, jury and executioner.  Dogs is a great departure from my experience GMing as well.  It's weird. It's scary.  It's damned cool.


Brother Seth

I guess what I need to understand at this point is what differences there would be if I re-designed this using the town creation rules. The concensus seesm to be that I should use the rules, but I don't understand what would be different. It'd help me grok the differences.


Easy! Redesign it using the rules, post it here, and we'll see.


Brother Seth

Well, maybe when I get a chance, I'll get around to it.

I hate to say it, but "Do it over" is not exactly constructive criticism. It really took the wind right out of my sails. When someone is as charged up as I was about this game and they ask for outside comment, I would think that being helpful will generate more sales than "That's all wrong, do it over".

I'm done with the soapbox now.


Quote from: Brother Seth on May 04, 2006, 03:29:09 PMI hate to say it, but "Do it over" is not exactly constructive criticism. It really took the wind right out of my sails. When someone is as charged up as I was about this game and they ask for outside comment, I would think that being helpful will generate more sales than "That's all wrong, do it over".

You asked how it would be different if you designed it the other way. Many times, trying something to SEE how it is different is a much better experience and leads to much better/more concrete understanding of the differences than being TOLD how it is different, hence Vincent's suggestion you redesign it using the town creation rules and thus SEE FOR YOURSELF how it would be different. This is a very far cry from "That's all wrong. Do it over."

Also, I'll note Vincent made no value judgement at all, he neither states nor implies anywhere that you did it wrong -- you seem to have inserted that yourself. Take a deep breath. Calm down. No one is judging you.
Rev. Ravenscrye Grey Daegmorgan
Wild Hunt Studio