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46709 Posts in 5588 Topics by 13297 Members Latest Member: - Shane786 Most online today: 30 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: [DitV] Judges in the Mega-City - alternate setting  (Read 2478 times)
SavageInOz
Member

Posts: 3


« on: February 25, 2008, 06:00:58 PM »

Had a great idea for an alternate setting for DitV (although I love the standard setting):

Judges in the Mega-City
-----------------------------------
Based on the 2000AD comic Judge Dread. Really easy to convert. Horses become Lawmasters, Guns are Lawgivers and your coat becomes your Uniform. Towns becomes Blocks.

As far as the Block design, Pride (Injustice)... leads to crime...leads to criminal/anti-social thoughts...leads to Criminal organizations/gangs..leads to Hate and Murder.

Ceremonies are Arrest procedures.

If you have the Judge Dread d20 there is lots of great background and lists of sentances for crimes to use.

Voila. What do you think? Input is most welcome.
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Indy Pete
Member

Posts: 9


« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2008, 01:29:53 PM »

Hi SavageInOz

The Judge Dredd (JD) universe is a great setting, and sure there is plenty of material out there to flesh your game out with.

I dunno though: if your players are Judges and they have read the comics, then IMO they will be inclined to pull out their Lawgivers (big iron) and blow perps (sinners) away. JD isn't ever about helping people, or saving a citi-block (Town): JD is more about sending peps to the iso-cubes. The Judges aren't even on the same side as the perps: as I remember it Judges enter the academy really young, and a me vs them mentality is hammered into the psyche of a Judge, so it's not like you can even bring a Relationship with a perp into play.

As far as the Block design, Pride (Injustice)... leads to crime...leads to criminal/anti-social thoughts...leads to Criminal organizations/gangs..leads to Hate and Murder.

IMO, this needs work: the Sin (Crime) progression is one of the main DitV hooks upon which a lot hangs. Why does Pride lead to Crime? The connection isn't obvious there, at least to me. The comics have always been satirical in tone anyways, so how about considering a totally satirical Crime progression? As I remember it, most citizens (perps) in MC1 have nothing to do so that is what leads to them breaking the law. So how about this for a Crime progression? (Totally off the top of my head as you'll see.)

Boredom (manifests as looking for something to do); leads to...
Actually Doing Something (manifests as getting a job (!) or joining a stamp-collecting club); leads to...
Thinking You Are Worth Something (manifests as expecting more than is your lot; jaywalking); leads to...
Taking What Is Deemed Yours (manifests as expecting to be paid for working; stealing; getting yet another job); leads to...
Block War!

No logical progression on that last one there :D This is Judge Dredd after all. You may start out slipping your hovo-socks into your neighbours lanudry-bot-basket in the morning, but come lunchtime you'll be shoving a splat-gun up their jacksies.

I think the idea is worth pursuing if you are really into JD, but I would think it'd be a lot of work. Go for it if you believe in it though :)

Finally, it's Judge Dredd, not Dread :D

Cheers
Pete
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SavageInOz
Member

Posts: 3


« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2008, 09:18:46 PM »

Sorry it's taken a while to reply. Work has been a cruel mistress and I wanted to take time to address your thought provoking response properly. Firstly my idea initially was largely a throw out, top of the head idea for someone to pick up and run with but on reading your reply and thinking about my answer I realised this may be something I would like to run with a little myself. Also I should say my only defence against the dreadful (pun intended) crime of dread not dredd I can only atribute to reading too many posts on here re Dread: The First Book of Pandemonium.

Hi SavageInOz

The Judge Dredd (JD) universe is a great setting, and sure there is plenty of material out there to flesh your game out with.

I dunno though: if your players are Judges and they have read the comics, then IMO they will be inclined to pull out their Lawgivers (big iron) and blow perps (sinners) away. JD isn't ever about helping people, or saving a citi-block (Town): JD is more about sending peps to the iso-cubes. The Judges aren't even on the same side as the perps: as I remember it Judges enter the academy really young, and a me vs them mentality is hammered into the psyche of a Judge, so it's not like you can even bring a Relationship with a perp into play.

Well I see your point but I think the idea of an Alternate setting is to allow you to tell different types of stories and have a different feel otherwise it's just re-skinning a game that you a) have already played and b)ain't broke so don't fix it. JD would have a different feel certainly and while they may not be "helping" they are serving the law to keep the peace. They restore order to a citi-block and sending perps to iso-cubes is no less valid as a conflict than exorcising demons. Also while they may, and I stress may, escalate the conflicts more quickly, the JD world does have SJS Judges who will come down hard on Judges who murder a perp without proper procedures and too many bodies does get you investigated. As reagrds to relationships they don't have to be friendships or positive a Judge could "take a interest" in a up and coming kid who he thinks may be going astray, or an interest in a perp which he uses the relationship to make sure he is cubed and then never use it again. DitV often has realtionships with the "bad guys". They also develop relationships with their fellow judges, someone in the Justice department, weather control, traffic control, motor pool etc. I think the true difference in feel with the JD setting is that the Judges have much more back up either by equipment like a birdie lie detector (like calling their name) to the justice dept resources which I would develop as relationships so as they get the back up when they need it. That is not to say a Judge just calls in the Wally squad whenever they want, Judges are expected to be self reliant and resourceful first and to not waste the justice depts resources on matters they can handle themselves.

IMO, this needs work: the Sin (Crime) progression is one of the main DitV hooks upon which a lot hangs. Why does Pride lead to Crime? The connection isn't obvious there, at least to me. The comics have always been satirical in tone anyways, so how about considering a totally satirical Crime progression? As I remember it, most citizens (perps) in MC1 have nothing to do so that is what leads to them breaking the law. So how about this for a Crime progression? (Totally off the top of my head as you'll see.)

Boredom (manifests as looking for something to do); leads to...
Actually Doing Something (manifests as getting a job (!) or joining a stamp-collecting club); leads to...
Thinking You Are Worth Something (manifests as expecting more than is your lot; jaywalking); leads to...
Taking What Is Deemed Yours (manifests as expecting to be paid for working; stealing; getting yet another job); leads to...
Block War!

No logical progression on that last one there :D This is Judge Dredd after all. You may start out slipping your hovo-socks into your neighbours lanudry-bot-basket in the morning, but come lunchtime you'll be shoving a splat-gun up their jacksies.

I see your progression as the very thing you wanted me to make clear Pride (Injustice) (although a better term is needed) all the first four are part of stage one) they then after take what is deemed theirs they have committed a crime, and crime gangs or larger crime organisations form or are joined which leads to the people in the block answering sometimes willingly/sometimes in fear to these false priests of crime and their demonic crime organisations (who want their representatives to commit further or larger crimes) which leads to hate/murder and on occasion Block wars!!

I think the idea is worth pursuing if you are really into JD, but I would think it'd be a lot of work. Go for it if you believe in it though :)

On final idea and inspiration for doing this is the options it gives you to play in different settings and even campaigns may be interesting. You could be pursuing a criminal organsiation over a whole sector block to block, you could take the charcaters to the undercity, to brit city, atlantis or even the wastes all with different feels and agendas.

Again thank you for your reply, and I think I will give some thought to this and write up something and post here if people are interested and any further ideas from you or others would be most welcome.

SavageInOz
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zornwil
Member

Posts: 86


« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2008, 05:09:27 PM »

Hi, I love alternate settings!  Please post away.

I'm not sure about changing the ladder for Judge Dredd anymore than for, say, the Reign of Terror Dogs (Les Chiens de la Terreur) game I've run.  I suppose you might want to have Block Wars as some level even higher than Hate and Murder.  But otherwise, I'm not sure what needs to be changed?  I guess the question is, what is really different about sin, what are you getting at here?  For Office Dogs at the Watercooler, a version of Dogs as powerful business consultants, I do have to use a different ladder to a degree, though it starts the same and is analagous, because we don't (much!) have "hate and murder" in the office but we do have "hate and (wrongful) terminations".  Anyway, to me the thing is, what are you getting at?  Not saying there isn't a great reason, I'm just missing it. 

That said, I think JD is an easy shift, so to speak, setting aside of course that the work of giving setting info, the morality of the Judges, and so on is real work.  I have read Judge Dredd, and although I know it's the exception, the Judge did show mercy on occassions during its best-written stints, it wasn' a bloodbath over every little digression as it became for long periods. 

Personally, I'm interested in what is seen as so different.  In running Les Chiens de la Terreur, the ideology is different, and the setting is different (a French Revolution that never was...), but the sins, the demons, the authority of the Dogs, and so on are all the same. 

But I do think that "just" reskinning creates some great differences, because with different morality you get different player reactions and tints to their viewpoints.  Les Chiens de la Terreur takes shape around ideological issues of equality being carried to its extreme more than typical Dogs does, for example, or at least I should say, properly, that it more immediately suggests that as an issue or theme. 

Anyway, mainly, wanted you to know I'm interested to see more and encourage you to do more with JD and let us know.  I've often thought of wanting to run a Dredd game.
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- Wilson
Darren Hill
Member

Posts: 867


« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2008, 05:26:58 PM »

I love the idea of a Judge Dredd version. One thing I'm having a conceptual problem with, is the Town. In a Judges game, what exactly is the community that is being judged? The sample "alternate settings" in the rulebook, from memory, are things where the 'Dogs' are part of the community they are judging, or can be bound up with them in some way. In Dredd, the judges are really, really a people apart, and the nature of their judging: "find a criminal, judge him, move on," seems to me to be hard to work into the town format.
If you were playing SJS guys, I can see that. But otherwise, a judge dredd game to cries out for, "we've just arerested this jaywalker, but now a dinosaur has broken out of the zoo three blocks away, while the panic is causing a 40 car pileup." It seems a lot more impersonal than Dogs.
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zornwil
Member

Posts: 86


« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2008, 10:40:45 AM »

You raise a good point re the adventure aspect.  Here's a couple thoughts. 

One I said already, which is I would take as a model those stories where Judge Dredd is sympathetic and use those as the model, but that might just be me.  I raise this though to answer the "community" part.  In those stories, he's clearly not divorced, and we see the purpose of the judge as truly a peacekeeper and controlling point. 

The other is, I think, you sort of hit the nail on the head with the dinosaur example, and here's the way (perhaps) to meld the action and the judgement, which is that you have judges presented with choices about which are greater evils and which to prioritize, which can play into that.

Although really you have to admit/set expectations that the action is secondary to the judgement.  Or if you flip those, maybe then you could play my version of Action Dogs for Judge Dredd.... ;)  Seriously, though, I think it is a fundamental issue in that what I think of when I think of Judge Dredd are the stories where he's had to consider mercy and pass "reasonable" (in context!) judgements; others will think of, as you say, stopping the mugger of the little old lady and then suddenly the dinosaur appears.  Or just big kill-'em-all Block Wars.  I'd suggest all 3 of these latter alternate understandings of Judge Dredd are all 3 separate games, and only the first is Dogs in the Vineyard.  The 2nd version MIGHT be playable using the Conflict Resolution mechanics but introduce so many action aspects that it may or may not hold together, and that's where we've been playing around using Action Dogs.  The third sounds like a good octaNe game, or some similar action system.

But to your point, Darren, the players have to get on the same page on what we mean in playing "Judge Dredd." One thing if I were running this settnig is have a list of the moral imperatives the Judges live by, and that would be a simple, high-level, philosophical list - just as with the Faith in the book.
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- Wilson
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