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Author Topic: [DitV] Noob question...gaming the system?  (Read 2429 times)
AnakinOU
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« on: September 20, 2007, 07:38:23 AM »

I'm completely new to the whole "storytelling/indie/Forge" RPG scene, so please forgive me if I'm a bit off base.  Having never even SEEN DitV in play...I'm a little concerned about the "Raise/See/Give" mechanism, specifically, counting dice and making extremely calculated decisions. 

You see, when we get Dogs to the table, my group will probably want to totally "game" the system.  I'm concerned specifically about the "roll all your dice, then put them forward a little bit at a time over the course of the encounter" bit.  Are all the dice that have been rolled completely public knowledge?  I'm really afraid my crew would have difficulty seeing past the dice if they're all out there. 

e.g. I would totally expect to hear any one of my players say the following: "I have a 1 1 1 2 3 3 4...you have a 2 2 3 3 6.  If I Raise with my 3 4, then you'll likely see with the 6 2, then Raise with the 3 3.  That would mean I'd need to See with the remaining 1 1 1 2 3, and that would give me 5d6 worth of Fallout.  Given what I already have set aside in Fallout (3d4), I'm probably good for experience, and 5d6 is too risky and would likely put me over 10 points on the Fallout roll.  I'll just See, and won't Raise."

My crew are all D&D'ers.  They will gladly sit down and roll 2d8+STR all afternoon, just trying for a 16.  They get a kick out of creating arbitrary class and skill combos that push the limits of the system.  They're munchkins, and very gamey.  I was hoping Dogs would be a good first step into more narrative games for them, but given some feedback I've gotten from them already, the open dice pool thing my be a stumbling block...pulling them out of whatever narrative mindset they were establish in the first place.

How easy is it to "break" Dogs?  Would it break the system to play with hidden dice pools?

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lumpley
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« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2007, 08:16:26 AM »

Gaming the system is part of the fun! Calculating out your dice vs mine like that doesn't hurt the game at all, I encourage you to do it. That's how you decide whether to escalate now, later, or at all.

Remember that all the dice aren't on the table up front, though. You roll your stats and relationships up front, but not your traits. Not knowing which traits you and your opponent will be able to bring into play, or what numbers those trait dice are going to roll, is also part of the fun.

-Vincent
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Georgios Panagiotidis
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« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2007, 09:22:55 AM »

I was hoping Dogs would be a good first step into more narrative games for them, but given some feedback I've gotten from them already, the open dice pool thing my be a stumbling block...pulling them out of whatever narrative mindset they were establish in the first place.

To me, the key to keeping the system from breaking is by emphasising the close tie between narration and the Raise/See mechanic. Even though it's spelled out in the book, I missed it the first few times: it's not a legitimate raise/see unless the dice are tied to relevant narration.

At my table this means: without the dice, your narration has no effect. And without appropriate narration, you cannot use your dice to raise or see.

After a while your group will have naturally worked out a standard for what qualifies as appropriate narration. Until then though, it's up to the GM to be strict and unforgiving about this. Especially when your players aren't used to narrating essential parts of the game themselves.
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Five tons of flax!
I started a theory blog in German. Whatever will I think of next?
AnakinOU
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« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2007, 03:37:26 PM »

Wow...thanks for the prompt replies. 

Yeah, I imagine getting my crew into the narrative mode might be challenging.  But there's a good game here...I can feel it.  I just need to get everyone else's buy-in.  Smiley

While I'm asking newbie questions, is there any reason (beyond rule #0) that my dogs won't just carry many guns into battle?  After all, if each one gives them dice, why not bring and use 3-4 guns per conflict?
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lumpley
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« Reply #4 on: September 20, 2007, 03:42:45 PM »

There was a thread about that! I like my post from it, so I'm going to quote it here:

James is right. Every gun he pulls, he gets its full dice.

Wicked pissa, huh?

You can ask him to justify pulling another gun, but if he's at all with it he'll be able to justify handily. You provided good justifications (blast away with both hands, wave the bigger gun around for intimidation) right in your examples. And there's always "[Raise] I empty the cylinder at him and throw the gun to the side... [Next Raise] I pull out my next gun, empty the cylinder at him and throw the gun to the side..."

Totally legit. Yes, he'll get a metric buttload (2.2 buttloads Imperial) of dice. Yes, it'll take a mob armed to the upper teeth of NPCs to even make him nervous.

And remember that he gets to decide which guns he cares about, and he almost certainly cares about all of them, so he can go ahead and stat the lot.

But it's all just fine. The more dice people have in their guns, the happier I am, as GM. Every die in a gun is a die that wants you to shoot someone. When you put all those dice on your character sheet - they're yours, all you have to do is point a gun at someone - you set yourself up for hard decisions about life and death.

Doyce, those guns are his gift to you. Accept them with a glad heart!

Here's the whole thread: [DitV] Dealing with *reservoir* Dogs Smiley

-Vincent
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