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Author Topic: [DitV Actual Play] Pioneer Flats (& the obligatory rules question)  (Read 5641 times)
foucalt
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« on: July 03, 2006, 05:57:28 AM »

Awesome session of Dogs last night - sad to say after a year of owning the pdf, it's my first. Happy to say it will be the first of many.

The Dogs:

Brother Remus was raised an orphan in a Faith orphanage by tough, mean old Nuns of the Faith, and that makes him nervous around women (2d6). The other kids were mean to him, and they killed the little mouse(2d8) that was his only friend. To him being a Dog means freedom (2d6), and he's a good shot (2d8) who'll stand up for children(1d8). He's got a big, but falling apart copy of the Book of Life(2d4) from the orphanage. For his initiation, he wanted to learn to solve something without firing his gun, so when there was a little bandit trouble near the city and the sheriff asked the Dog's Temple for help, his instructors told him to go and not to kill anyone. He came across a couple of bandits off by themself and burst out of the underbrush to call them to repentance with his Book of Life in hand. When that didn't work and one of them drew a gun, Brother Remus clubbed him with his Book and subdued them. Thus, The Book of Life is a Weapon, too: 1d6

Sister Jennifer married young and had a little boy. When her husband was away in town buying supplies, the boy fell ill.  As they lived off on their own, she had nobody to turn to and so anointed the boy herself, even though she knew it wasn't her place. The boy died anyway, and while her husband was on his way home he was waylaid and shot with his own gun. She was broken and felt irredeemable, but when she returned home to Bridal Veil Falls City, her Steward convinced her that being God's Watchdog might heal the wound (They told me I should be a Dog 2d6). Now she's afraid of guns (2d6?) so she carries a walking stick(1d8) she knows how to use to disarm (2d6?). She's also very attractive, and has a good singing voice (both d6s). For her initiation, she wanted to prove to herself (and maybe her instructors) that she has the Tenacity needed to be a Dog. So, when she saw one of the instructors letting a harlot out the back gate of the Dog's Temple one night, she decided to confront him in front of the other instructors. It soon became clear that nobody was buying his story that she was his sister, and Sister Jennifer won her Tenacity trait.

Here's what's up in Pioneer Flats:

Bro. Abram used to be a real hotshot Dog - a legend. Incoming players will have heard tall tales of him during their time in Bridal Veil Falls City. Everyone had him pegged to become one of the Ancients of the Faith, but right after he stopped being a Dog he fell in love with and married Running Deer, a Mountain Person girl who had converted to the Faith. Not everybody approved of their union, and life was tough for her in the city, so they moved out to Pioneer Flats to make a new start.

Last October, the Steward in Pioneer Flats died of natural causes while some Dogs happened to be riding through town. It fell to them to appoint the new steward. Just about everybody (not least of all Bro. Abram) expected they'd pick Abram to be the new Steward, but these Dogs had served with Abram and weren't impressed that he gave up his potential for "that Mountain Person girl." So, instead, they appointed the old Steward's oldest son, Bro. Nathan, to the job, even though he has a few character faults and lacks Bro. Abram's experience. This led to PRIDE on Bro. Abram's part.

Then, in the winter, Running Deer contracted a fever, and grew quite ill. Brother Abram decided to do the right thing and try to get over his misgivings about Nathan - he asked Nathan to come and anoint her with sacred earth and bless her to recover. Nathan came, but while he was blessing her the King of Life whispered to him that He was calling her home and that the most Nathan could do would be to ease her passing. When she died at the prayer's end, Abram was furious! Now he knew for certain he should have been the Steward, for in his eyes Nathan lacked the proper faith to restore her, and that constituted INJUSTICE.

After Running Deer was in the ground, Brother Thomas (Nathan's younger brother and the other son of the old Steward) came to visit Abram and offer his condolences, and he admitted that he too felt like maybe Abram should've been Steward. It probably didn't help that he could remember all the times Nathan had beaten him up when they were kids, or the times they used to shoot coyotes in the gut and then watch them howl and die. Thomas felt, as Abram did, that Abram probably could have saved Running Deer if the sacred earth had been anointed by him. To help console him, Brother Abram's sister,  Agatha, came to live with him for a while. Abram stopped going to church on Sundays, which even he knew was a SIN.

To remind himself of Running Deer, Abram took to sleeping with some of the things she still had from her time with him, among them a small ancestral statue she'd kept even after she converted to the Faith. When he slept with the idol next to him, Abram began to dream of Running Deer's ghost, who would whisper to him that only he could properly serve the town as Steward. Of course, we all know these were Demons in the dreams, and that when Abram started having prayer meetings on Sundays for himself and Agatha and Thomas, this was FALSE DOCTRINE.

It's springtime now, and time crops were planted and sprouting. Too bad every day is so hot it cracks the ground, and every night a mist rolls in and makes mold grow where the seeds have been sown. If the crops don't sprout soon, the harvest will be ruined this year, which is exactly what the DEMONIC ATTACKS are for.

Agatha and Thomas got to liking eachother, and decided they should be married - by Brother Abram of course. This hasn't quite happened yet, but when it does it'll be FALSE PRIESTHOOD. Thomas has been having dreams too, and he thinks Abram should be Steward. It's just a seed for now, but by the time he gets married it will have grown to the point where he's willing to MURDER Brother Nathan.

Enter the Dogs, who ride in on a Saturday:

After a quick initial conflict with Sister Patience, wife of Brother Nathan, they get the idea from her that she thinks that if Nathan would just apologize to Abram, they decided to go and visit Abram. Abram was out in the hot sun wearing his red and black leather Dogs coat plowing his fields, and he was pretty gruff with the Dogs. Basically, he told them he expected them to be here representing the King of Life and that he was waiting for an apology on behalf of the King himself.  This should have been a big clue that he wasn't quite on the right track, but the Dogs sort of took his side and went off to hammer on Nathan for failing to save Running Deer.

That night at the Steward's house, over rabbit stew, they determined (through conflicts) that 1) Brother Nathan was not the racist they took him to be and felt he did all he could for Running Deer, and they won followup stakes to convince him that his job was to serve, not to have the Dogs confirm his authority to everyone like he thought, 2) Thomas (not present at dinner) has been going over to Abram's on Sundays after regular services, and 3) Sister Patience thinks an apology would bring Brother Abram back to Sunday meetings. At which point, they're like "WHAT! HE'S NOT COMING TO CHURCH? HE'S HAVING HIS OWN MEETINGS?? OH CRAP!! FALSE PRIESTHOOD!!"

First thing Sunday morning they go to see Thomas, who gives on the conflict and tells them he doesn't think Nathan's doing right as Steward, and that he goes over to Abram's mostly to see Agatha. But yes, he thinks Abram ought to be Steward.

After the regular church service, they head over to Abram's house with a bone to pick. When Sister Jennifer tried to tell him she'd lost a loved one too, he's all "What do you know about it, DOGG!?" and Sister Jennifer starts a conflict with stakes of "Does he apologize?" and she starts it by shoving him against a wall with her walking stick. He reverses the blow and pins her to the wall, and it isn't long before he wins the conflict and doesn't have to apologize. Followup conflict though is getting him to realize he's in the wrong, and pretty soon Brother Abram has drawn his gun on Jennifer and Remus has in turn drawn a gun to cover her. When Remus drew his gun, we all agreed on that raise that fallout was now d10s, even though it was talking going on, because there were itchy trigger fingers. So, Remus raised pretty high, and I had Abram use all his little dice to see, meaning he flinched and Remus fired, and now Abram has 4d10 waiting for him in fallout. Beautiful. Remus fired on Abram's see (and has the fallout to prove it), but Abram's raise is he pulls sis. Jennifer in front of him (using my two highest dice for a 17). Sis Jennifer had to take fallout too, so she's hit as well. A little more fighting and then Bro. Abram calls on Running Deer's spirit to help him, which as we all know is him calling on a demon for help and suddenly he's got 4d10 demonic influence! With some clever Trait & Relationship pull-ins, Remus gets him deposessed and sorry just in time for him to collapse. He's seriously wounded and will die without attention. (we forgot to roll Jennifer's fallout dice at this point, but it worked out later, you'll see)

Remus thinks Abram's redeemed and should get Last Rites, Jennifer feels strongly he was guilty of False Priesthood and deserves to die in the dirt. What's at stake in the new conflict between them is "Does he get last rites?"  Enter Rules Question #1: Since we all agreed he was dying anyway, I was willing to give narration rights to either player for what Bro Abram's doing - is he drawing a tree of life in the dirt with his hand or is he reaching for his gun? Not everybody was sure it was OK for me to allow this, so we didn't end up using it. Would it have been within the rules for me to allow Abram's actions as sees and raises in a conflict between Jennifer and Remus? Jennifer won the conflict when Remus drew his gun on her and she knocked it out of his hand with her walking stick. By this time we remembered her fallout dice and she rolled them, then failed the Body see, so she collapsed too! Drama! it was beautiful.

Remus now had to try to save Jennifer, who was dying from the same bullet that killed Brother Abram. Midway through this conflict comes Rules Question #2, related to #1: 2a) Is there any way for him to use her traits and relationships in this conflict? like "Hey she's kinda cute (a d6 trait of hers) I really should save her" ? or is he stuck using only his own traits/relationships? 2b) If the person doing the healing wasn't another player, could Jennifer's player use those traits since she'd be the one handling the dice for that side of the conflict?  In the end, she made it, just in time for Agatha and Thomas to come out and be horrified at Abram's death. Agatha attacked Jennifer but Remus pulled her off and made her understand it had to be this way. Rules question #3 is: what kind of Fallout does Remus as healer take in the medical conflict? We said d6s, but I wasn't really sure based on the text.

That night the mists were gone, and the Dogs decided to stay in town for a week so Jennifer could recover from her wound and they could decide what to do about the Steward situation. We decided Nathan had learned his lesson about serving rather than demanding support from the Dogs, and he was kept as Steward. Thomas and Agatha repented and Nathan married them. By week's end crops were starting to sprout in Pioneer Flats. It was going to be okay.

Reflection & experience fallout entailed Bro Remus taking Brother Abram's coat and gun, which are known throughout the land, which I thought was pretty cool.  Sis Jennifer ended up taking her tenaciousness down a notch, and adding dice to her Acuity, since she wants to stay out of fights like that.

All in all, an excellent inaugural session. Comments on the town or the rules questions are welcome here! Thanks
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David Younce

dave dot younce at gmail dot com
ffilz
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« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2006, 08:18:06 AM »

If a PC is healing another PC, you definitely would not get to use the wounded PC's traits. You could take an immediate relationship, and if you wanted to base it off the wounded PC's traits that would be the way to do it (so Remus could take, say a 1d6 relationship with Jennifer: "Jennifer's cute and deserves to be saved.").

If an NPC is healing a PC, I think the only way to do it is to use the PCs dice, and any traits that make sense (so sure, the attractive trait could be pulled in). The NPC would contribute 2 stat dice and a trait of his own per standard aiding another rules(which will help make up for the fact that the wounded PC will have lots of traits that can't be used...). If the wounded PC has any free relationship dice, and doesn't yet have a relationship with the NPC, I'd allow the PC to add a relationship to the NPC.

On question one, I think either player could narrate things that dying Abram is doing. Of course remember your "most discerning player" check on raises and sees. Also, remember that a raise or see can not resolve the conflict. I could see one player raising "Look, he's scratching the tree of life in the sand, he's worthy of proper last rites." And the other player blocking: "No, as you can see, he's just clawing desperately at the ground, that's no tree of life."

Frank
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Frank Filz
foucalt
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« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2006, 09:59:26 AM »

Thanks, Frank! On the healing conflict, that's how we ended up playing it, but it felt funny when, for example, Remus wanted to show Jennifer's coat to her to remind her of her duties here on earth, and he was disappointed he couldn't get the dice either for her coat or for her relationship to the Dogs.

Anyone have an answer for healing fallout? Or thoughts on the town itself?

d
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David Younce

dave dot younce at gmail dot com
lumpley
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« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2006, 10:30:30 AM »

Me personally, I'm open to using the victim's traits and things during a first aid conflict. If I have "God promised me a long life 2d10" on my character sheet, for instance, you can BET I'd want the person giving me first aid to roll it.

That's one of those things I'll leave to your group's discretion, though, case by case.

Either way, Remus could totally have rolled Jennifer's coat as an improvised thing. I bet it would've counted as excellent.

And you get to roll a relationship with the Dogs only when you're in conflict with a representative of the Dogs or when your standing as a Dog is at stake, so he wouldn't've gotten to roll that anyway.

The healer's fallout is d6 when he takes a physical blow, d4 for non-physical ones, same as any. Here, let me find that old post ... got it. Be sure to read down to Judd's (Paka's) example too, it rules.

-Vincent
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ffilz
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« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2006, 10:41:49 AM »

Hmm, couldn't you pull in the relationship with the dogs with a raise to the effect of "You can't die now, you still owe the Dogs a year of service!" (presumably the real raise in play would be better, calling on the current situation and past situations, etc.)?

That thread you referenced is great. I'll have to remember those ideas.

I can definitely see how some of the victim's traits would be appropriate to roll even when it's a PC doing the healing.

Frank
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Frank Filz
lumpley
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« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2006, 10:46:40 AM »

Frank, you don't get to roll relationships for pulling them into a raise or see, unlike traits and belongings. Roll relationships at the beginning of the conflict, when a) the relationship's with your oppenent, or b) the relationship's with the stakes.

-Vincent
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ffilz
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« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2006, 10:53:02 AM »

Oops, keep forgetting that one. So yea, I can see that the relationship with the Dogs would not apply (well, maybe if the healing conflict was a followup of absolutely just the right prior conflict - I'll worry about something like that when it actually comes up).

And of course by that token, if the healer going to apply unused relationship dice to the wounded character, they need to do that before dice are rolled, not after they're halfway through the conflict and losing.

Frank
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Frank Filz
foucalt
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« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2006, 11:03:41 AM »

Oops, we did that too...
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David Younce

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« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2006, 11:08:21 AM »

About relationship dice assigned mid-conflict, see this thread.

-Vincent
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lumpley
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« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2006, 07:16:59 AM »

Oops, we did that too...

Lots of people do. I'd guess that playing that way's almost as common as playing it straight. So I'm not going to get worked up about it, especially if you had fun.

If you came in here saying "conflicts felt a little, I dunno, flat, deflated, like they never quite got going," I'd point to it, but as you didn't, I won't!

If you're curious about why I designed it the way I did, let's see... here's a very old post about it that explains my thinking. The thread's a big kerfluffle but maybe that one post is pretty approachable.

-Vincent
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lumpley
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« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2006, 07:35:39 AM »

Oh and I meant to mention:
Quote
Rules Question #1: Since we all agreed he was dying anyway, I was willing to give narration rights to either player for what Bro Abram's doing - is he drawing a tree of life in the dirt with his hand or is he reaching for his gun? Not everybody was sure it was OK for me to allow this, so we didn't end up using it. Would it have been within the rules for me to allow Abram's actions as sees and raises in a conflict between Jennifer and Remus?

Absolutely. Extremely in keeping with the rules, letter and spirit.

-Vincent
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foucalt
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« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2006, 08:23:08 AM »

Glad to hear it! Even though we didn't end up doing it that way, it totally felt right to me that we should be able to. 

I think we'll try playing Relationships strictly by the rules next time and see what affect that has - if it does turn up the gas on conflicts, that'll be great!
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David Younce

dave dot younce at gmail dot com
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