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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 158 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: [TSOY] Camp Nerdly: Mayahuel's Revenge  (Read 3188 times)
Jason Morningstar
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Posts: 1428


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« on: October 16, 2006, 05:17:16 AM »

I ran The Shadow of Yesterday for six players at Camp Nerdly:  Krista, Remi, Joe, Dave, Frank, and Andy.  Two players were quite familiar with TSOY but the other four were not.  The adventure I had prepped was designed for convention play, so it is pretty straightforward and relies heavily on the front-loaded Keys that have players both protecting one another and at each other's throats.  Beyond inter-group conflict, I just set up a situation for each of the three assassination targets, and three interstitial scenes that could be used as needed. 

The characters are all Aztec worthies selected by Mayahuel, Goddess of Alcohol, to hunt down and kill the three Gods who've been her romantic partners at various times.  She's an angry Goddess, and with good reason.  I arranged the characters so that at least two had a vested interest in not killing each God.

We played three scenes, two that I had prepared and one that emerged spontaneously, across four hours.  Two Gods got kacked and we didn't have time to get to the third.  The TSOY rules were introduced incrementally and everybody grasped the essentials quite quickly in play.  People were hitting Keys, burning them, applying new Keys and Secrets, and one player even transcended. 

Lessons learned:


Six players is really too many, and I actually designed the adventure for seven.  Maybe for convention play I should have a co-GM or assistant.

That seventh that I took on as an NPC was as tightly intertwined as the rest, and I was too busy to push his Keys.  This meant that two characters - Lord Bird and General Mountain Flag - got short-changed on interpersonal conflict. 

Laying out flexible key scenes and being ready to move with the players ideas worked just fine.  All the heavy prep is built into the characters. 

Various players proposed going off on their own, which is perfectly acceptable in general but slows the pace a bit.  I think I'll make it explicit that they must stick together, for the sake of expediency.  Or bring in a co-GM. 

The "Aztec-ness" didn't seem to be a stumbling block, although I'm interested in feedback on this.  I listed everyone's Nahuatl name ("Quiahuitl") but we used the translation at all times ("Lady Rain"). 

Overall I was very pleased with how it went, and I hope to hear from the players with suggestions, high and low points, and their impressions.
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foucalt
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Posts: 66


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« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2006, 06:07:51 AM »

Firstly, let me say, this game was a LOT of fun for me. Jason's well-constructed scenario and player interrelations were miles ahead of anything we might have come up with on our own for these characters.

I was Lord Bird, the Sacred Drunk.  Key of the Coward, Key of the Mission, and Key of the Foolhardy Hero. Lots of fun to play the guy who irresponsibly brings everyone into a dangerous situation and then hides under the table throwing slippery mangoes and banana peels while everyone else does the real fighting.  There were a few conflicts between some of the players where I didn't seem to have any particular stake, but I don't know whether that was due to the absence of Shattered Stone or not. The second page of the character sheet was extremely helpful, where Jason put down the information not just on our keys and secrets, but also invaluable information on our relationships to the other players and the gods who were our targets.

I had bought and read TSOY, but never played it, and felt like it was easy to pick up and use - the more experienced players were helpful but never pushy with rules-knowledge. Thanks for running this.
 
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David Younce

dave dot younce at gmail dot com
Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2006, 06:24:41 AM »

I'm glad you had fun, Dave - I figured you did, based on the chaos you sowed!  Did the Aztec theme present any difficulty to you?  I felt rushed and distracted a bit, since there were a lot of things going on in the lodge and the noise level was high, and I worry that I didn't provide enough detail to ground the setting or individual scenes. 

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foucalt
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Posts: 66


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« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2006, 06:32:05 AM »

No, the Aztec-ness was fairly approachable. Maybe phonetic guides to make trying to say some of the Nahuatl names easier (I would have liked to, but was afraid to try on some of them) could have helped. Or including a third page with small print reference material on gods & heavens - tell players not to bother reading it ahead of time but that if/when these things come up in game, they could take a sec and read the paragraph to give them what their character would already know about that place, god, or person. It was loud and distracting in there, but with 6-7 players there would have been a lot going on even if we'd been all by ourselves.
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David Younce

dave dot younce at gmail dot com
TonyLB
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« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2006, 07:58:20 AM »

All I know, having been in another game nearby, is that you guys spent an entirely awesome amount of time discussing how the horde of rabbits was responding to your drunken orgies.
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Just published: Capes
New Project:  Misery Bubblegum
Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2006, 09:03:27 AM »

I put the character background material here if anyone is interested. 

I'd love some ideas for structuring the Keys and backgrounds to make it possible to remove one, two or three PCs and still have it all click, based on uncertainly-attended convention play.
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foucalt
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Posts: 66


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« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2006, 09:25:50 AM »

I'm not sure if this is intentional or not, but Lord Bird's sheet has nothing on it about Ehecatl.
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David Younce

dave dot younce at gmail dot com
Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2006, 09:37:27 AM »

That's a mistake - thanks, I'll correct it. 
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SNES Chalmers
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« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2006, 04:37:25 PM »

I heavily enjoyed TSOY, and loved the organic growth mechanic (more than any other I've encountered, I think). I didn't feel that the number of players really hurt the game-everything felt like it ran smoothly. I loved Andy's "fudge dice" the most.

...

Anyway.
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-Frank

This beholder loves to be painted.
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