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Author Topic: Talking Points for Sorcerer  (Read 2602 times)
Michael S. Miller

Posts: 846

« on: October 24, 2003, 11:19:27 AM »

As Luke Crane mentioned, I'll be helping him pitch games at Lollagazebo in two weeks. There's been a thread on talking points for My Life with Master, and I'm pretty good at explaining Universalis, but at GenCon I found myself tripping over my tongue whenever someone wanted to know about Sorcerer. I knew getting into minutae wasn't the way to go, but I honestly couldn't think of anything else to say. It was like I knew too much to see the game with a newcomer's eyes.

So, Ron, and anyone else for that matter: What selling points should I stress about the game in general? Any tips on explaining the supplements?

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Ron Edwards
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Posts: 16490

« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2003, 12:13:34 PM »

Hi there,

Shilling for Sorcerer works best for me when I do this.

1. Ask the person whether they want to talk system/resolution or premise/setting. Carry into one of the following as appropriate based on their answer.

2. Grab some dice and demonstrate 2 things. (a) A character smacks the demon to get its respect first and then commands it. This shows how to roll over victories, especially if the command fails and the demon then rolls its victories into an attack on its master. (b) Four characters all have guns pointed at one another's heads, Woo-style. Resolving this in most other games is agonizing; doing so in Sorcerer is chillingly simple.

3. In talking about the premise, point to the text on the back of the book and say "This isn't lying." When I contrast that detail to other games, that usually gets a laugh.  But focus on the content of that text, and segue into how the demons/sorcery are customizable. Give examples; make damn sure that they know the religious context is an option, not part of the game per se. Give references to all kinds of non-Judeo-Christian demons.

Do not talk about how there's "no setting" or "make your own setting." This is not a selling point until they understand the premise.

4. Describe player-characters as walking time-bombs ... I usually draw one hand across horizontally, representing the character getting what he wants, and bring another hand up diagonally toward that plane, representing the negative side of dealing with demons catching up with the character. "Whatever happens, it makes a story." I contrast that very explicitly to "story games" which rely on learning mounds of stuff and playing out, or reading, someone else's story.

5. Refer to the modern day, sword-and-sorcery fantasy, and various details in the other two sections as all kinds of available setting. Describe things like the detective-ish stuff in The Forbidden Tome and the whacked fantasy-weirdness in Azk'Arn.

6. Point out the bulleted points in Chapter 1 of the core book and have them hold the book and read them themselves.

7. Point out the Denial, Dysfunction, and Function text in Chapter 1 of Sex & Sorcery and have them hold the book and read it themselves.

8. Point out the Story Now stuff in Chapter 7 of Sorcerer & Sword and have them hold the book and read it themselves.

No one gets all of this, of course. I take it from #1 and see what happens. But #3 and #6 always get in there somehow.

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