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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 57 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Agon - Oracle idea, looking for feedback  (Read 3808 times)
Nev the Deranged
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Dave. Yeah, that Dave.


« on: March 21, 2007, 04:14:04 PM »


 Hiya. Still working on putting together that con scenario.

 One of the ideas I had was for one of the quests to involve an Oracle on a mountaintop. And of course, if the heroes journey to see an Oracle, they had better get some prophecies, right?

 So I was thinking one of two things... and then those two things turned into several variations on themselves.

 Idea 1: I let everyone roll Insight to interpret the Oracle's cryptobabble. If they succeed, they get an Advantage equal to their victories, if they fail, I get an Advantage against them equal to the victories. Either way, they tell me what the prophecy was. This is similar to the Bridge of Souls idea. Perhaps too similar.

 Idea 2: I make up a handful of Prophecy Cards beforehand (by writing some vague, cryptic phrases on some notecards, like "Your true strength lies in the arms of another", or "Beware the eyes of the air" or whatever). Everyone draws a card, and then they can turn it in whenever THEY interpret in-game events to have triggered (or fulfilled, or whatever) their prophecy.

 Idea 3: I let the players themselves jot down a prophecy on a notecard, then shuffle them and hand one to each player.

 I kind of like the card idea, sort of a mini-TMW inspired deal, but then what? Is a card good for a specific benefit? Or could it just grant the player narrative power for a moment? What about negative prophecies? Maybe a combination of a card, and a die roll to see if it's positive or negative?

 Should the benefits be restricted to Advantages? Could it be maybe a refreshment of impairments? A few extra Divine Favor? Maybe even buying off a spent Fate point (I am capping Fate expenditure at 4 per PC for the con scenario)?


 I dunno. I think it's a neat concept, but I'm not sure what would be the best way to implement it. I'm open to suggestions.



 Also, on a slightly unrelated note, because Agon has SO many options for PCs to get bonuses and such, I am planning to hand out a short list just so everyone (including me) can keep track of them. Maybe spiffy up a character sheet printout showing where everything is and how it can be used. Just so I don't miss anything, so far I've got:

 1. Creative Abilities
 2. Helping Abilities
 3. Oaths
 4. Divine Favor
 5. Fate
 6. Contest for Advantage
 7. Invoke Hubris
 8. God Oaths

 Does that about cover it, or am I missing something?
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John Harper
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« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2007, 07:30:16 PM »

Hey Dave,

I love the card idea. How about each cryptic phrase also has a benefit written with it. Like "d10 Advantage" or "Restore 3 Divine Favor" and such. The PCs can have a contest to interpret the Orcacle (gotta have that contest!) and for each victory they get, they may draw a card from the deck, then discard all but one.

Or, hell, maybe they can keep what they draw. If you're feeling generous.

Failure, of course, gives the Antagonist cards.

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Agon: An ancient Greek RPG. Prove the glory of your name!
Darren Hill
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« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2007, 08:45:00 AM »

This con scenario is sounding cooler and cooler. Will you be uploading it anywhere, afterwards? Or, even better (for me!), do you want someone to playtest it when it's nearly ready?
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Nev the Deranged
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Dave. Yeah, that Dave.


« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2007, 04:20:35 PM »

 
 Thanks, John. I think I will probably do cards with cryptic phrases and benefits/penalties on them, but I definitely want to keep the part where the players decide when they apply. Maybe it'll work, maybe not, but anything I can do to get them shoulder more of the load is good, heh.

 Well, Darren, the playtest will be when I run it at CoDCon. I will barely have time to put it together by then, and I won't know if I'm biting off more than I can chew until it's too late. ^_^

 I will be running it for the second time at Forge Midwest, and I have one more slot open, so if you want in, go post on the planning thread to secure your spot. Unless you'll be at CoDCon, and then you could, in fact, be in on the "playtest".

 D.

 
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John Harper
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« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2007, 05:25:22 PM »

Yes, the players should decide when they apply! Absolutely.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2007, 02:52:59 PM by John Harper » Logged

Agon: An ancient Greek RPG. Prove the glory of your name!
Mel White
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« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2007, 11:37:19 AM »

Idea 2: I make up a handful of Prophecy Cards beforehand (by writing some vague, cryptic phrases on some notecards, like "Your true strength lies in the arms of another", or "Beware the eyes of the air" or whatever). Everyone draws a card, and then they can turn it in whenever THEY interpret in-game events to have triggered (or fulfilled, or whatever) their prophecy.
I gave this a try in a recent Agon game.  It worked pretty well.  I used 'Idea 2'.  In audience with the Oracle at Delphi, the heroes faced a Spirit contest as she 'read their auras'.  Each hero victory entitled that hero to draw a card.  All the cards were advantage dice of different values.  The hero would choose when to apply the card.   The simple contest was only 2d6--I didn't spend any strife, but even then only one hero earned one card, which read something like 'Water cuts the hardest stone;  d8'. 
I made about 20 prophecies just in case.  Other prophecies were "Hades awaits you eagerly"; "Aphrodite grows jealous"; "In death you confront your fear"; "An enemy seeks retribution"...stuff like that. 
Mel 
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Nev the Deranged
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Dave. Yeah, that Dave.


« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2007, 03:24:25 PM »

Neat! I actually never got to implement this idea in my game.

How did it work out? Was it more dramatic to have only one hero get a prophecy (since they rarely come in batches in the fiction)? How/when did they cash it in?

Good to hear I said something someone found useful ^_^

Dave.
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Mel White
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« Reply #7 on: December 13, 2007, 08:15:33 PM »

Neat! I actually never got to implement this idea in my game.
How did it work out? Was it more dramatic to have only one hero get a prophecy (since they rarely come in batches in the fiction)? How/when did they cash it in?
Good to hear I said something someone found useful ^_^
Dave.
It worked out very well.  I regretted that I only got to hand out one prophecy, but that definitely made it more special for the hero who received it.  Thinking about it, next time I do it, gaining a reading from the Oracle will be the prize awarded to the winner of the Aura Reading--one prophecy (or maybe one per victory).  The players who did not get a prophecy were disappointed!
I can't remember exactly when the prophecy was cashed in.  I recall it being at an appropriate time--either crossing the River Styx or trying to 'cut through' an enemy...I know the player held onto it for a long time before using it!
Mel
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Noclue
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« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2007, 11:38:18 PM »

Mel, I'm thinking if there's only one prophecy and it goes to the winner, why not make it a full agon rather than a limited contest? Then the PCs could really duke it out for the reward. That would make me feel better if I was one of the players who didn't get the prophecy.
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James R.
Mel White
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« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2007, 05:34:47 AM »

Mel, I'm thinking if there's only one prophecy and it goes to the winner, why not make it a full agon rather than a limited contest? Then the PCs could really duke it out for the reward. That would make me feel better if I was one of the players who didn't get the prophecy.
A full agon?  Do you mean a battle?  Perhaps a non-combat battle to determine who sees the Oracle...That's a reasonable variation.   I think the same effect would occur if, in the Aura Reading (which is a simple contest of spirit), the players know that only the best roll gets the prophecy, and that the players have a better understanding that the prophecy mechanic is an advantage die--a good thing!
I wouldn't put too much attention on the prophecy, it's meant to be an addition to whatever information the characters have come to obtain.  In a different set-up, obtaining prophecies might be the whole purpose of the quest in which case it probably should be a bigger deal.  In the game I ran, the heroes went to the Oracle in order to learn why all the fire in the world was extinguished.
Mel   
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Nev the Deranged
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Posts: 741

Dave. Yeah, that Dave.


« Reply #10 on: December 14, 2007, 05:47:30 PM »


Quote
In the game I ran, the heroes went to the Oracle in order to learn why all the fire in the world was extinguished.

Nice.
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John Harper
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« Reply #11 on: December 14, 2007, 11:18:35 PM »

Yeah. That quest setup is very cool, Mel.
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Agon: An ancient Greek RPG. Prove the glory of your name!
Noclue
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« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2007, 09:19:02 AM »

Mel, I'm thinking if there's only one prophecy and it goes to the winner, why not make it a full agon rather than a limited contest? Then the PCs could really duke it out for the reward. That would make me feel better if I was one of the players who didn't get the prophecy.
A full agon?  Do you mean a battle?  Perhaps a non-combat battle to determine who sees the Oracle...That's a reasonable variation. 
Mel   
Yes, battle. I was being play-y with the greek word. I too like the setup.
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James R.
Mel White
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« Reply #13 on: January 31, 2008, 04:57:35 AM »

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