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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 76 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Pretender: Attack of the Mechanical Dinosaurs  (Read 4728 times)
xiombarg
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« on: October 22, 2003, 09:46:24 PM »

Well, some of the players couldn't make it to Unsung, so we grabbed a free-floating player and played Pretender instead. Though I greatly abbreviated the pregame prep and took a larger "standard GM" role than is perhaps normal, I think it went really, really well. Everyone got to narrate at least once.

Here are the logs:

http://ivanhoeunbound.com/pretender1_ooc.txt
http://ivanhoeunbound.com/pretender1_nar.txt

You can see all the pregame stuff in the OOC logs, including comments from people watching the game but not actively playing. As usual with indie netgaming stuff I post, the narration happens in the "nar" log, which lets you read the session as sort of a story. Even there, you can see people trading the narration.

I am very pleased with where Vincent's Otherkind engine, tho heavily modified from the original engine, has taken us in actual play -- it makes me want to try out the original game as it was written.

I'm curious what people (anyone, players and nonplayers alike) think about how the game went and how the system performed.
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love * Eris * RPGs  * Anime * Magick * Carroll * techno * hats * cats * Dada
Kirt "Loki" Dankmyer -- Dance, damn you, dance! -- UNSUNG IS OUT
AgentFresh
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« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2003, 10:18:50 PM »

Like I said on #Indie_ooc, I like the mix of structure and openess going on with the system/setting. The rolls became more than just math exercises and I was interested seeing how each one turned out.

Also, group participation in every scene and roll is facilitated well. No sense of sitting around waiting for "your go." It's always potentially your go. You can always find a way to add dice or advice to the conflict. And the fact that you could be called on to narrate at any time really gives you a stake in every conflict resolution.

Jesse was fun to play, too. The Stat system, being based on the very sim "a stat is what it should be" idea, was a breeze to adjust everytime he absorbed a new form. I was able to take him from 6 year-old, to 6'7" gutter punk, to a bat and finally to a fat guy who worked in the chinese place down the street with just a few keystrokes and without slowing down the action a bit.

Thanks for running it, and thanks posting the logs so I could see the set-up discussion that happened before I dropped in.
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<>< Jason Sims, just some guy from Hypebomb.com

IndieNetgaming: where RPG Theory becomes Actual Play
Lxndr
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Master of the Inkstained Robes


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« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2003, 06:15:08 AM »

Free-floating players are good things.  I think Indierpgs needs more of them.  And it sounds like our game may have managed to recruit machmoth.  :D

I had fun coming up with my character, blending two separate story ideas, and being elected to do the last narration of the night allowed me to, well, reassert my challenge for "lengthy narration king".  475 words, longer than most narrations, but I really was given a lot of stuff to jam into those words.  :)

About rules:  I think the website could be better organized, somehow, with regards to the rules, but I'm not sure exactly how, and in any case the rules themselves were rather darned fun to work with.  

As Jason pointed out, the whole "attributes are what they should be" stuff really allowed changes to characters happen in the game (and in retrospect I should have manipulated my Earth and Fire as I switched bodies or assimilated new ones, but it didn't occur to me at the time - or perhaps I should have listed four different earth/fire scores, one for each body).

I wonder, though - if 3 is the human average, what does that say about the majority of mankind?  There are 4 spots for dice at a minimum, which means the average human, in every task they perform, will have at least a single one, and possibly more.  I have to wonder, philosophically, where most people "choose" to put their ones - probably either in narration or style, for after all a lot of us are followers, and a lot of us are dorky too.

Two bodysnatchers (one a multi-person hive) and a dinosaur-robot-woman-thing... what a group we made.  :)  And now our characters have a new ally, in case we ever get around to resolving this cliffhanger.
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Alexander Cherry, Twisted Confessions Game Design
Maker of many fine story-games!
Moderator of Indie Netgaming
Dana_mun
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« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2003, 07:36:50 AM »

heh, she was a mechanoid shape shifter =)

I thought it was interesting seeing the both types of snatchers in ation. and the jesse bat rawked! heheheh!
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xiombarg
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« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2003, 08:28:36 AM »

Quote from: Dana_mun
I thought it was interesting seeing the both types of snatchers in ation. and the jesse bat rawked! heheheh!
Yes... I'd like to note, system aside, that Jason, as Jesse, used the IRC medium to maximum effect by changing his name slightly every time he changed form. Very cool.
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love * Eris * RPGs  * Anime * Magick * Carroll * techno * hats * cats * Dada
Kirt "Loki" Dankmyer -- Dance, damn you, dance! -- UNSUNG IS OUT
Lxndr
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 1113

Master of the Inkstained Robes


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« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2003, 09:38:00 AM »

I thought about doing that every time I had a different Phoenix speaking, but I think that would have cluttered things up waayyy too much.

If I was to re-do Phoenix in the light of reflection, I think I'd split the Earth and Fire scores, as I mentioned above, and I'd add a note that cooperation augmented it - so two bodies acting together would get higher-Fire+1, three would get highest+2, and so on.  

Complex, but Phoenix was fun.  A combination of two ideas I've been interested in trying in a game for a while - bodysnatching, and a group-mind like the Tines from "A Fire on the Deep."
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Alexander Cherry, Twisted Confessions Game Design
Maker of many fine story-games!
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MachMoth
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« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2003, 06:27:33 AM »

I suppose I should inject my $0.02.

It was an interesting game, to say the least.  One I was glad to be, uh, present for.  It would seem that the narration was meant to be done on the fly, which IRC kind of slowed a tad.  There was a few "wait a sec" and "quite, I'm not done" when it came time to resolution.  The system forces at least some detail into the narration, and as far as I'm concerned, that's a good thing.  One roll took some time to resolve (even before narration), but then it would propel the story a good distance, making up for any lost time.  Some may not like the jerky pace, but then I suppose those people shouldn't be playing RPG's, now should they.
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