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Author Topic: Sorcerer Gedankensetting  (Read 4948 times)
Ben Lehman

Posts: 2094


« on: September 09, 2003, 03:22:15 PM »

Yes, I'm going to get back to work on 15 minutes one of these days.  I've been drowning in work.

However, Chris K's quote, below (from the thread in RPG Theory) sparked a silly idea for me.  Might be good for a grimly comedic Sorcerer game.  I mean no offense to Chris (I actually agree with him).

Quote from: Christopher Kubasik about character role-playing inspiration

The two matters are, in my view, consecutive, and both matter.  There's the "summoning" (dear god) and the "manifesting" (into the real world, to "reveal" the character to others.)

BL>  Well, actually, there are three steps.  Contact, Summon and Binding.  You don't Bind them until you've reached 7th level.  Then you get to learn REAL magic.

I give you:

Dark Dungeons (or Mazes and Monsters, if you would rather.)
A setting for Sorcerer.

The setting is the suburban US, during the mid-80s.  You are impressionable young teenagers who, rejected by your peer-group, have turned to the that new, dangerous fad sweeping the nation: the role-playing game.  There's just one thing different from the real world.  All the worst things you've heard about role-playing games are true, because the characters are real.

Demons are RPG characters.  They are universally Possessors, who possess their Summoner, and grant them assorted powers whilst possessed.  They all have the same Need, as well, to be portrayed in the context of a role-playing game.  (This is why it sucks to lose a character -- you need to deal with a Demon in need until it starves, and it knows that it is doomed.  This is also why campaign play is of paramount importance.)

Humanity represents your "ties to normality."  High humanity characters can get dates, not be wedgied by jocks, and interact with the normal world.  At 0 humanity you go insane, most likely permanently possessed by one of your demons, and either kill yourself or others.

Lore is your knowledge of RPG minutia.  It can be used for rules-lawyering, as well as many other things, and is VERY usefuly for controlling demons (you know exactly what they can do, after all.)

The one rules modification is that demons can "level up" -- gaining power and possible new abilities.

Any comments?  Is this in wildly poor taste?  Does anyone else find it as funny as I do?


P.S.  It would also be interesting to run this with "games within the game:" essentially playing your characters playing their demons in Rolemaster, AD&D, Star Frontiers, or the like.

Acts of Evil Playtesters

Posts: 1113

Master of the Inkstained Robes

« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2003, 04:26:31 PM »

This is the same "germ" of a concept that inspired my Unknown Armies fledgling adept school, "gammancy," where you gain "charges" by participating in roleplaying games.  

Yes, it is in wildly poor taste.  Yes, I find it as funny as you do.  And yes, I'd actually play in it.

But remember, a demon doesn't necessarily find itself doomed.  Why do you think "raise dead" and "resurrection" are so important?  Of course, you have to hope your coven leader/GM is forgiving, and you might have to play a character in the meanwhile (another summon/binding?  two characters to deal with in the game?)

Alexander Cherry, Twisted Confessions Game Design
Maker of many fine story-games!
Moderator of Indie Netgaming
Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Posts: 16490

« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2003, 06:57:03 PM »


This idea was first proposed by Jared Sorensen, in that the gamers were sorcerers and the characters were the demons, in a thread at the Gaming Outpost. Those threads, alas, are no longer readily available.

My favorite suggestion from the enthusiastic discussion (might have been Mike Holmes, not sure) was that the GM was the only normal guy at the table.

Anyone remember that discussion?


Posts: 61

« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2003, 04:23:46 AM »

Hilarious. Just re-read the Chick tract on-line. I used to collect my favorites, but can't remember most of them. Their was another one about the Illumanati. . .

I started playing when I was 5, 1983. I think that was the peak of the D&D scare. I inherited my collection from my older half-brothers whose mother made them burn what wasn't saved. So yeh, its funny, but to an extent. The religious fundamentalists would be a lot more funny if they weren't in power.

"We have to break free of roles by restoring them to the realm of play." Raoul Vaneigem, 'The Revolution of Everyday Life'

Posts: 187

« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2003, 02:46:59 PM »

This is only tangentially related, but it seems to me that the current ways of describing HeroQuesting in the world of Glorantha seem rather parallel, in some ways, to playing an RPG, too.

That is, you enact or re-enact specific mythic deeds, there are 'stations (ie, encounters) that you run into, sometimes you don't run into what you expect (wandering monsters).  Too many layers of 'meta' makes my brain hurt.

Instead of making them possessors, though, you could make them object demons.  In the form of little pewter figures.  Or perhaps dice.  Figures work better, though. Or maybe character sheets or rule books, for that matter...

A slightly parallel idea would be to use a LARP game instead of a straight 80s table-top RPG.  That's probably in even poorer taste, though.

Dana Johnson
Note that I'm heavily medicated and something of a flake.  Please take anything I say with a grain of salt.
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