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Author Topic: DMK's 3 crazy game ideas for Game Chef 2012  (Read 930 times)
dmkdesigns
Member

Posts: 59


« on: April 13, 2012, 04:02:57 AM »

Hello!

I've been working on three game ideas. Below are my ingredients, brief intro write-ups for each game and PDF links for the current drafts.


INGREDIENTS (2 sets)
4 Words: Coyote, Doctor, Lamp, Mimic

4 Threads:
Courage as currency (Thread # 27419)
Stalin's Story (Thread # 18194)
System design for 2 different games (Thread # 1691)
Exposition, example of play, IIEE on the Edge of Forever (Thread # 13183)



SPIRIT QUEST

A game of adversity and ingenuity among spirits over the fate of your tribe.

About: Characters take on roles as animal totems that represent a tribe in crisis. Each tribe is on the brink of destruction due to starvation, disease, war, the environment or other causes. It is the responsibility of the totems to journey far from their homes to the Edge of Forever, where the great spirits gather. It is here where the totems must make a case for why their tribe should receive aid.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKspiritQuest.pdf

Note: This game needs a fair bit of feedback as it is the least developed concept.



RAGE, RAGE

A game about the last chance for hope in the face of futility and madness.

About: This is a collaborative narrative-focused game that uses a loose framework and suggestions to construct a one-shot story. You can try to accept it, you can try to deny it, or you can try to bend it to your will.

Rage, Rage was inspired by: “Macbeth” (William Shakespeare), “Out, Out—-” (Robert Frost), and “Do not go gentle into that good night” (Dylan Thomas).

It is dedicated to those of us who must confront hard choices in life, which exist between hope and fear, courage and madness.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKrageRage.pdf

Note: This game has some unusual mechanics that I'd appreciate specific feedback on how to simplify or clarify.



COYOTE PASS

A game about smugglers searching for identity and life beyond the Edge.

About: Coyote Pass is a role-playing game where your Player Characters (PCs) are Coyotes, smugglers along the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories. It is a life of deceit and desperation where Duties to Clients and Debts to Innocents come into conflict with the Authority and other Coyotes who try to reclaim their lives along the way to a new life beyond the Edge.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKcoyotePass.pdf

Note: Of the three, this game feels the most like a traditional RPG. Does it make sense?



Best,
-David-
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Mathalus
Member

Posts: 26


« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2012, 09:45:42 AM »

After skimming your three games, I think I am most interest in Rage, Rage. If you were pitching those three games at a con, I would pick that. The concept just jumped out at me. I will reread the pdf and ask more questions about the mechanics as soon as I can. If you are hitting refresh on this thread over and over, maybe you can answer the Power 19 and see if it helps.

1.) What is your game about?**

2.) What do the characters do?**

3.) What do the players (including the GM if there is one) do?**

4.) How does your setting (or lack thereof) reinforce what your game is about?

5.) How does the Character Creation of your game reinforce what your game is about?

6.) What types of behaviors/styles of play does your game reward (and punish if necessary)?

7.) How are behaviors and styles of play rewarded or punished in your game?

8.) How are the responsibilities of narration and credibility divided in your game?

9.) What does your game do to command the players' attention, engagement, and participation? (i.e. What does the game do to make them care?)

10.) What are the resolution mechanics of your game like?

11.) How do the resolution mechanics reinforce what your game is about?

12.) Do characters in your game advance? If so, how?

13.) How does the character advancement (or lack thereof) reinforce what your game is about?

14.) What sort of product or effect do you want your game to produce in or for the players?

15.) What areas of your game receive extra attention and color? Why?

16.) Which part of your game are you most excited about or interested in? Why?

17.) Where does your game take the players that other games can’t, don’t, or won’t?

18.) What are your publishing goals for your game?

19.) Who is your target audience?
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dmkdesigns
Member

Posts: 59


« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2012, 04:43:00 PM »

After skimming your three games, I think I am most interest in Rage, Rage. If you were pitching those three games at a con, I would pick that. The concept just jumped out at me. I will reread the pdf and ask more questions about the mechanics as soon as I can. If you are hitting refresh on this thread over and over, maybe you can answer the Power 19 and see if it helps.

1.) What is your game about?**

2.) What do the characters do?**

3.) What do the players (including the GM if there is one) do?**

4.) How does your setting (or lack thereof) reinforce what your game is about?

5.) How does the Character Creation of your game reinforce what your game is about?

6.) What types of behaviors/styles of play does your game reward (and punish if necessary)?

7.) How are behaviors and styles of play rewarded or punished in your game?

8.) How are the responsibilities of narration and credibility divided in your game?

9.) What does your game do to command the players' attention, engagement, and participation? (i.e. What does the game do to make them care?)

10.) What are the resolution mechanics of your game like?

11.) How do the resolution mechanics reinforce what your game is about?

12.) Do characters in your game advance? If so, how?

13.) How does the character advancement (or lack thereof) reinforce what your game is about?

14.) What sort of product or effect do you want your game to produce in or for the players?

15.) What areas of your game receive extra attention and color? Why?

16.) Which part of your game are you most excited about or interested in? Why?

17.) Where does your game take the players that other games can’t, don’t, or won’t?

18.) What are your publishing goals for your game?

19.) Who is your target audience?


Thanks. I look forward to more questions. Thanks for posting the Power 19 -- I've run across that before as well.

I'm curious to know what about the concept got your attention?

Best,
-David-
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Mathalus
Member

Posts: 26


« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2012, 08:24:42 PM »

Rage, Rage interests me because it's about darkness and madness. The other games are much lighter, and they seem fine, but I feel like I can play something else to get those stories.

I can't tell you how to fix it, but I wish Madness wasn't just a discrete score. What if it was something closer to the adjective tags in Technoir?

Don't you think that courage and madness should go up together, rather than be an inverse?
Logged
dmkdesigns
Member

Posts: 59


« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2012, 08:53:12 PM »

Rage, Rage interests me because it's about darkness and madness. The other games are much lighter, and they seem fine, but I feel like I can play something else to get those stories.

I can't tell you how to fix it, but I wish Madness wasn't just a discrete score. What if it was something closer to the adjective tags in Technoir?

Don't you think that courage and madness should go up together, rather than be an inverse?

Interesting.  :-)

Having never played or read Technoir, I can't follow the example. Could you summarize what the adjective tags in Technoir are like?

Good points. I can see how Courage and Madness could be companions. However, I wanted something with "predictable" results (spending Courage points) and unpredictable results (Madness dice). Also, while it may be simplistic, I like the idea of Courage feeding Hope and Madness feeding Fear -- though too much hope can be disastrous, as in the Hope Runs Wild condition. I wanted to draw a parallel of hope/courage/light vs fear/madness/darkness in this game.
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Mathalus
Member

Posts: 26


« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2012, 11:37:41 AM »

If you download the player's guide I think it will give a better explanation than I can provide.
Logged
dmkdesigns
Member

Posts: 59


« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2012, 12:39:50 PM »

If you download the player's guide I think it will give a better explanation than I can provide.

I read over the Adjective part in Technoir. So how do you use the adjectives in Technoir and how would you see that be useful in Rage, Rage?

-David-
Logged
dmkdesigns
Member

Posts: 59


« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2012, 12:49:51 PM »

Hello!

I've been working on three game ideas. Below are my ingredients, brief intro write-ups for each game and PDF links for the current drafts.


INGREDIENTS (2 sets)
4 Words: Coyote, Doctor, Lamp, Mimic

4 Threads:
Courage as currency (Thread # 27419)
Stalin's Story (Thread # 18194)
System design for 2 different games (Thread # 1691)
Exposition, example of play, IIEE on the Edge of Forever (Thread # 13183)



SPIRIT QUEST

A game of adversity and ingenuity among spirits over the fate of your tribe.

About: Characters take on roles as animal totems that represent a tribe in crisis. Each tribe is on the brink of destruction due to starvation, disease, war, the environment or other causes. It is the responsibility of the totems to journey far from their homes to the Edge of Forever, where the great spirits gather. It is here where the totems must make a case for why their tribe should receive aid.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKspiritQuest.pdf

Note: This game needs a fair bit of feedback as it is the least developed concept.



RAGE, RAGE

A game about the last chance for hope in the face of futility and madness.

About: This is a collaborative narrative-focused game that uses a loose framework and suggestions to construct a one-shot story. You can try to accept it, you can try to deny it, or you can try to bend it to your will.

Rage, Rage was inspired by: “Macbeth” (William Shakespeare), “Out, Out—-” (Robert Frost), and “Do not go gentle into that good night” (Dylan Thomas).

It is dedicated to those of us who must confront hard choices in life, which exist between hope and fear, courage and madness.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKrageRage.pdf

Note: This game has some unusual mechanics that I'd appreciate specific feedback on how to simplify or clarify.



COYOTE PASS

A game about smugglers searching for identity and life beyond the Edge.

About: Coyote Pass is a role-playing game where your Player Characters (PCs) are Coyotes, smugglers along the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories. It is a life of deceit and desperation where Duties to Clients and Debts to Innocents come into conflict with the Authority and other Coyotes who try to reclaim their lives along the way to a new life beyond the Edge.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKcoyotePass.pdf

Note: Of the three, this game feels the most like a traditional RPG. Does it make sense?



Best,
-David-


I'll be posting a full-length for each of the above game here in a moment.

-David-
Logged
dmkdesigns
Member

Posts: 59


« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2012, 12:57:00 PM »

Hello!

SPIRIT QUEST

A game of adversity and ingenuity among spirits over the fate of your tribe.

About: Characters take on roles as animal totems that represent a tribe in crisis. Each tribe is on the brink of destruction due to starvation, disease, war, the environment or other causes. It is the responsibility of the totems to journey far from their homes to the Edge of Forever, where the great spirits gather. It is here where the totems must make a case for why their tribe should receive aid.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKspiritQuest.pdf

Note: This game needs a fair bit of feedback as it is the least developed concept.



Spirit Quest

A game of adversity and ingenuity among spirits over the fate of your tribe.

By David Miessler-Kubanek


1 GM + 2 to 4 additional players (collaborative and competitive)

ABOUT
The Game: Characters take on roles as animal totems that represent a tribe in crisis. Each tribe is on the brink of destruction due to starvation, disease, war, the environment or other causes. It is the responsibility of the totems to journey far from their homes to the Edge of Forever, where the great spirits gather. It is here where the totems must make a case for why their tribe should receive aid.

A World in Crisis: The world dances with uncertainty as the Tribes believe the great spirits are deaf to their pleas, or have left their people alone and unprepared for the challenges at hand. It is up to you, to act on behalf of your Tribe.

Cross-purposes: The reasons for why Tribes are in crisis ... is because the Tribes want something from each other they believe they do not have ... their actions have led to the crisis originating from within, but choose to blame another for it ... they have angered the great spirits and now must suffer.

Your Tribes: Tribes are the physical presence in the world -- the civilization of people who have wandering dreams and practical needs. Each Tribe has a collective identity known to other Tribes and expressed as Traits by a Tribe's Animal Totem spirit. Unfortunately, at the moment, all of the Tribes are in crisis as the result of internal and/or external challenges.

Being an Animal Totem Character: You are a spirit animal manifestation of the best and worst aspects of your Tribe, the land of people, who are unfortunately now in crisis. And it is your responsibility to your Tribe to seek out help from the Great Spirits of the World -- for their wisdom and power in your Tribe's time of need.

Traits: Best and Worst -- using Best or Worst Traits to your advantage may help you during challenges (+1 to a test roll), or may help others prove their capabilities, and thus they earn additional Courage tokens from Coyote along the dangerous journey.

Coyote: In this game, one player usually has a role as the referee, usually called a Gamemaster (GM), will be the called the Coyote. The Coyote will be responsible for facilitating the challenges along the way to test the Totem Characters along their journey from their homeland to the Edge of Forever. Coyote will both try to inspire and discourage the Totem Characters through adversity and assistance. What this means is that sometimes Coyote will provide opportunities which the players may not be able to overcome (such as pushing through the night during a blizzard), or should not accept as part of their journey (such as a bribe of power). However, it will depend on the the circumstances of the encounters, the nature of the players within your group and their Totem Characters as to how challenging the tests should be.

Courage as currency: Use of tokens and dice for this.
Each Player, including the GM, starts the game with 4 Courage tokens. They may spend these during a seasonal phase on challenges. Courage tokens used for oneself are exchanged with a black die, one for one. Courage tokens used for others are exchanged with a white die, one for one. Whenever you use a die (such as rolling in a challenge) you will exchange the die for a Courage token and give that token to whomever you tested against, such as Coyote, or another player's Totem Character.
   They may also help or hinder another by spending a Courage token from their pool. The tokens are immediately transferred to other Totem Characters or Non-Totem Characters (played by other players) so long as this gesture is accompanied by a narration of how this is possible. Mechanically, this adds (for helping), or subtracts (for hindering) 1 for each token spent.


SETUP
Determine your Tribe, the Animal Totem you will play that best represents their Tribe, and the crisis at hand that forces you as a spirit of the Tribe to journey far from home for help. The journey takes place over four metaphysical seasonal game phases: Spring, Sumer, Autumn, and Winter. If the Totem characters survive, they will find the Edge of Forever.


JOURNEY
Seasons as game phases
   Spring - play out the Tribe in crisis for each Totem Character, with the other players taking on roles to support the crisis from Setup. Write down notes, including how challenges are resolved for each season as these will be tallied at the Conclusion phase of the game. Be sure to include the color of the die, the number rolled on each and the outcome.
   Summer - play out either part (such as montage or flashback comments), or whole of how the Totem Characters met and what their current challenge is as a group and how each overcame it as victor or fell victim to it.
   Autumn - frame the journey so far for each Totem Character and then play out a reflection scene for each Totem Character with the other players taking on roles to fill in the scene. Talk about this out-of-character, if you want to get a sense for how much background is needed to play the parts. Introduce challenges and resolve them as needed.
   Winter - play through a major conflict based off of either: a prior challenge that resolved with half or more Totem Characters as victims -- and the challenge haunts the group, or a new challenge. If your group is up to it you may want to consider using cutthroat challenges in this phase of the game.



Difficulty numbers and Seasons: Each Season has a difficulty rating that progresses with the flow of time and pressure to resolve your Tribe's crisis before it is too late. Here are the unmodified difficulty ratings for each Season (using a d6): Spring = 2; Summer = 3; Autumn = 4; Winter = 5. Rolling 1s results in a [condition or change in your Totem Character's nature]. Rolling 6s results in ???

OR

Roll = 1-3   SACRIFICE
      You may ask one question
      You make it through the challenge by sacrificing something
      Everyone else in the group gets to collectively choose one of the following for your Totem Character: Downstep a Trait, bring another Totem Character into the challenge, or surrender two Courage tokens to either another Totem Character or a Non-Totem Character, as appropriate.

Roll = 4-5   SETBACK
      You may ask two questions
      You make it through the challenge with a setback
      Coyote gets to choose one of the following for your Totem Character: The challenge persists (requires another test roll), the challenge shifts (a different Totem Character must test), or the challenge takes a toll (give a Courage token to Coyote).

Roll = 6   SUCCESS
      You may ask three questions
      You make it through the challenge as desired
      You get to choose one of the following: Trade in two Courage tokens for a Boon (a favor from Coyote to be used in any further challenges, such as rerolling a challenge for yourself or another), award a Merit (from Coyote, give one Courage token to any one or more other Totem Characters or Non-Totem Characters you feel deserve it), or for being Resourceful in a future challenge (adding 1 to your next challenge test roll).

At the end of each seasonal phase, vote, either openly or secretly, which Totem Character deserves to be rewarded with a Courage token. Coyote will also roll a d6 for each Totem Character with even numbers giving the Totem Character an additional Courage token and odd numbers giving none.


CONCLUSION
   The Edge of Forever is found sometime after the Totem Characters resolve their Winter phase challenge. Coyote shows them the way to where they will have an audience with the great spirits of the world.
   The spirits are represented by characters (Witnesses) the Totem Characters helped or hindered along the way, even if they are things personified, such as natural disasters and extreme weather into something which can communicate in this spiritual gathering place along the Edge of Forever.
   Have the Totem characters make their arguments with the Witnesses with Coyote as the intermediary for the great spirits.
   Whichever Totem character(s) proved their courage the most, the great spirits shall reward them. Whichever Totem character(s) proved their courage lacking shall be denied assistance.




Use “scores” and other things? Outcomes mean what?

Sample challenges ...

Sample play through the phases (Setup, Seasons, Conclusion)


Circular board with sections devoted to focus areas. Wheel --> circle.
Setup in outermost circle. Conclusion in innermost circle. Solstace and Equinox spaces may hold extra value. Spirit quests for either characters on the brink of failure/KO'ed. One special space per season, but fewer spaces with each season ring. Escalation of time pressure to resolve with each successive season.

Rows and columns (rectangular pattern shifting)?





Game Chef, 2012, Idea 1

[Collaborative/competitive game.]

[Design as if only played once.]


INGREDIENTS (2 sets)
4 Words: Coyote [GM -- main adversary/guide], Doctor [Shaman encounter], Mimic [act like Coyote to trick Coyote]

4 Threads:
Courage as currency (Thread # 27419) - spending Courage to make moves.
Stalin's Story (Thread # 18194) - winning favor from authority/replacing authority -- Coyote and great spirits.
System design for 2 different games (Thread # 1691) - game within a game -- earning reward to help your Tribe.
Exposition, example of play, IIEE on the Edge of Forever (Thread # 13183) - great possible title, "On the Edge of Forever" with the circular design shift or moving into the center of authority to make moves. Getting to the end/center by wisely spending Courage to perform deeds, protect others from harm, to share resources, etc.
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dmkdesigns
Member

Posts: 59


« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2012, 01:12:31 PM »


RAGE, RAGE

A game about the last chance for hope in the face of futility and madness.

About: This is a collaborative narrative-focused game that uses a loose framework and suggestions to construct a one-shot story. You can try to accept it, you can try to deny it, or you can try to bend it to your will.

Rage, Rage was inspired by: “Macbeth” (William Shakespeare), “Out, Out—-” (Robert Frost), and “Do not go gentle into that good night” (Dylan Thomas).

It is dedicated to those of us who must confront hard choices in life, which exist between hope and fear, courage and madness.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKrageRage.pdf

Note: This game has some unusual mechanics that I'd appreciate specific feedback on how to simplify or clarify.



Rage, Rage

A game about the last chance for hope in the face of futility and madness.

By David Miessler-Kubanek



The End is approaching.
Only you can see the signs.
Perhaps you can alter its course.

What are you willing to risk to keep hope alive?
Who are you willing to sacrifice for a higher cause?
How will you prevent the dying of the light?



CH 1. ABOUT THE GAME

This is a collaborative narrative-focused game that uses a loose framework and suggestions to construct a one-shot story. You can try to accept it, you can try to deny it, or you can try to bend it to your will.

Rage, Rage was inspired by: “Macbeth” (William Shakespeare), “Out, Out—” (Robert Frost), and “Do not go gentle into that good night” (Dylan Thomas).

It is dedicated to those of us who must confront hard choices in life, which exist between hope and fear, courage and madness.



CH 2. THE END : : “The End is approaching.”

End Examples: The End can mean the destruction of the world, or something smaller in scope or more personal in nature — what some hope to avoid. Here are a few suggestions for an End:

The fall of a great empire or civilization ...
The demise of a band of heroes ...
The breakdown of sanity when facing a truth ...
The betrayal of trust by friends ...
The loss of freedom when conquered ...
The death of a beloved family member ...
The revelation that can harm a community ...
The ruination of a reputation or power ...

End Pathway Examples: As a group, you will agree upon the thematic nature of your End for this game. Here are a dozen End Pathway examples to connect with your End:

The lighthouse off the coastline that guides your family/rivals home.
The family’s heirloom torch that’s been burning since foundation day generations ago.
The moonlight from an eclipse that holds a phantom village in time.
The lamp in the mines used to locate treasure/cave-in victims.
The flashlight in the haunted house that keeps fears from taking over.
The star in a galaxy far, far away, which is being studied by an orbiting research station.
The ancient gemstone that glows with the life force of those nearby.
The firefly that keeps the stories of time and space trapped in its abdomen.
The lightning rod used in the experiment to communicate with spirits.
The hearth that has witnessed countless joys and tragedies in a home.
The fire in the wilderness that keeps wild animals at bay and calls vagabonds near.
The candle at the altar that burns during a an ancient secret ritual.



CH 3. THE SIGNS : :  “Only you can see the signs.”

The Signs are significant indicators that an End is drawing near. This may include loss of resources, lack of communication, a change in policy or behavior, threats to interests. You will notice more Signs when your Madness increases. Signs are created by players other than yourself, approved by the GM and given to the players who notice them.



CH 4. ALTER ITS COURSE : :  “Perhaps you can alter its course.”

The PCs are the kinds of people who are directly involved with the major events. All PCs are agents of potential change. This may be real or imagined, credible through evidence, doctored through schemes to avert or to confront the End head on. As a result, the PCs will use their connection to the Lamp to heal or harm others by accident or with purpose.

As core characters involved with the End, you will need to consider your course of action regarding the nature of the End and what to do about it.


COURAGE & MADNESS

With that in mind, there are two main attributes all characters possess: Courage and Madness. Their total value is six.

Courage begins at 4 (minimum: 0; maximum: 6).
Madness at 2 (minimum: 0; maximum: 6).
Courage represents how many points you have to use as action currency and/or to resolve conflicts in a scene.
Madness represents how many dice you get to use to resolve conflicts.
Whenever Madness increases, Courage decreases and vice versa.
Once a PC’s Madness equals or exceeds their Courage, turn their Lamplight Pathway over, from Hope to Fear.
If a PC’s Madness recedes below their Courage, turn their Lamplight Pathway from Fear to Hope.

Spending Courage (by one or more characters in a scene)
To bring one or more supporting characters into a scene: 1 pt.
To buy additional Actions during scenes: 1 pt each.
To repel Madness by restoring Courage: 4 pts per.
To recover from a conflict: 2 pts.
To soak damage during a conflict: 1 pt each.
To sustain the Light in the Lamp: 1 pt.

Earning Courage
Challenge a Fear, once per scene (it cannot be the same Fear two scenes in a row).
If you are able to convert a character of a different kind to be your kind.

Earning Madness
Killing another PC.
Note: If any 1s are rolled (per conflict test) with Madness dice, automatically increase a character’s Madness attribute by one and decrease their Courage by one.

Dying
Note: Characters may die if they are harmed and have no Courage to counteract the harm. However, characters who are dying have a final action utilizing their Madness dice pool — if any 6s are rolled the dying character may harm one or more characters for each 6 before succumbing.


RESOLVING CONFLICT

When conflict requires risk, go to the dice and use a combination of Courage points and Madness dice to help resolve the conflict.

Note: To succeed, you will need a number of Hits, based on the difficulty determined by the GM (see below). A Hit can be made by a combination of spending points of Courage and/or rolling Madness dice and getting a 3 or higher on the dice.

Hits   Difficulty
2   Easy
3   Difficult
4   Challenge
5+   Extreme



CH 5. HOPE : :  “What are you willing to risk to keep hope alive?”

The hope of the game is in the hands of the characters. It is represented with the Light in the Lamp. For some, they will hope for the End to come, or to be avoided. Hope is also a value which connects each character to the the fate of the Lamp which is at the center of your game’s Pathways and includes a possible End for the game.


RISK FACTOR

The risk factor is that concept of love, revenge, glory, family, power, which is represented in concrete terms, such as a peace alliance through a document, vows to another through a ring, stability at home in exchange for a key to a locked door. What are you willing to risk to pursue your hope as represented as the Light in the Lamp?


BLINDED & BURNED

Also, for some games, too much Light may go too far with dire consequences. It may blind characters from real dangers, it may eliminate safeguards, it may burn a world faster than the cold empty darkness without Light — leaving it desolate and charred, or preparing it for new growth and life to emerge in time.



CH 6. WHO : :  “Who are you willing to sacrifice for a higher cause?”

Kinds: While this game can host a multitude of characters, it includes only three kinds of characters, all of whom are deeply invested in the fate of their world. The three kinds are: those who surrender to the inevitable, those who rail against it, and those who seem to mastermind it. And, as like in some stories, it is possible that characters may shift between the kind they play from start to end.

Sacrifice: Furthermore, it is likely that some characters will be abandoned, slaughtered, imprisoned, or worse while others pursue their causes. Think about who may suffer the consequences of (not) pursuing a risk to keep hope alive.

Who Pathway Statements: The player characters (PCs) of this game are the most important characters of the game and they will be linked by Who Pathway Statements. The PCs will be connected directly to each other as follows, according to the position of the players in a circle. The player to the right of you will have a backstory linking your character’s Hope with their PC. The player to the left of you will have a backstory linking your character’s Fear with their PC. Write down the nature of this relationship on a card and place it between the players — be sure to note which is for the Hope and the Fear.

Supporting characters will play their parts, run by the GM, as needed to help facilitate the PCs.



CH 7. DYING OF THE LIGHT : :  “How will you prevent the dying of the light?”

The Dying of the Light refers to extinguishing the light in the Lamp. It means that hope has been lost and that the End has arrived. Whether the End arrives, or is prevented, the game stops, finishing with an epilogue — each player gets to describe their character’s conclusion.

Think about how your character is involved directly in the dying of the light, based on their Lamplight Pathway Statements, Who Pathways Statements, what kind of character they are, the risk and who may be affected along the way to the End.


THE LAMP

A Lamp is used to represent both a physical construct or vessel that holds or emits the Light. The Lamp is connected to each character through a Hope and a Fear.

Lamp Pathways Statements: Use an index card (both sides). On one side write down your character’s Hope. Pass the card to your right and that player will write down your character’s Fear on the back.

Darkness Begins at Game Start: The player who last turned off a light source has their  character begin the game with their Lamp Pathway showing Fear instead of Hope.

Twilight Calls: At the end of each scene, if a character was successful in helping Hope they either keep their Lamp Pathway showing Hope, or turn Fear to Hope. If the character was unsuccessful then Fear either remains or Hope changes to Fear for that character’s Lamp Pathway.


THE SHADOW MOVES

The player who began the game with Fear rolls a d6. The number that results is the scene (in addition to the first one) when the Fear indicated on the character’s Lamp Pathway should enter the game, as determined by the GM.

Whenever another Lamp Pathway turns from Hope to Fear, that person then rolls 1d6 to move the Shadow of Fear into the game for their Character.


HYSTERICS

A character may choose to increase their Madness (and decrease their Courage) in exchange for avoiding a confrontation with their Fear. However, the character must spend the scene behaving irrational or non-functional as a result.


FALSE LAMPS & ARTIFICIAL LIGHT

It is possible that the use or creation of false lamps and/or artificial light may happen in your game. Consider their consequences and if it is better to stick with the actual for your first experience.



CH 8. LIGHTFALL

Lightfall is the final endgame condition of the Light and/or Lamp in the game, of which there are only three possibilities:

Hope Prevails: Revives and is strong. If Fear ever shows for all living characters the game stops. Fear Prevails and each character gets to state how their character responds.

Fear Prevails: Goes out and is gone. If Hope shows for all living characters AND the characters have no Madness the game stops. Hope Prevails and each character gets to state how their character responds.

Hope Runs Wild: Gets loose and does harm*. If Hope shows for all living characters AND the characters have all spent down their Courage to zero, leaving only Madness, the game stops. Hope Runs Wild and each character gets to state how their character responds.

* This most likely includes unexpected changes to the world.



Game Chef, 2012, Idea 2

Theme: Last Chance — Design your game as if it might only be played once. After all, the world is going to end.

INGREDIENTS FOR RAGE, RAGE
Words: Lamp [major use, focal point, symbolic nature for hope or something else of value to the group], Doctor [major use — although indirectly, involving the light to heal or hurt]
Threads: Courage as currency (Thread # 27419) [major use, earning and spending Courage to keep hope alive], Stalin’s Story (Thread # 18194) [minor use, winning favor from authority/replacing authority/changing viewpoints of others by switching kinds to gain support and avoid defeat or death]

Twitter description: A RPG about the last chance for hope in the face of futility and madness.
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dmkdesigns
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« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2012, 01:21:21 PM »


COYOTE PASS

A game about smugglers searching for identity and life beyond the Edge.

About: Coyote Pass is a role-playing game where your Player Characters (PCs) are Coyotes, smugglers along the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories. It is a life of deceit and desperation where Duties to Clients and Debts to Innocents come into conflict with the Authority and other Coyotes who try to reclaim their lives along the way to a new life beyond the Edge.

dmkcreative.com/games/gameChef2012DMKcoyotePass.pdf

Note: Of the three, this game feels the most like a traditional RPG. Does it make sense?



Coyote Pass

A game about smugglers searching for identity and life beyond the Edge.

By David Miessler-Kubanek



Game
About: Coyote Pass is a role-playing game where your Player Characters (PCs) are Coyotes, smugglers along the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories. It is a life of deceit and desperation where Duties to Clients and Debts to Innocents come into conflict with the Authority and other Coyotes who try to reclaim their lives along the way to a new life beyond the Edge.

Under the Skin: Coyote Pass is designed to examine the trading of values and identity between others in a fictional setting. It is a game about taking risks in trust and consequences, of keeping and breaking promises made. It is a game about people who have turned to this kind of life as a last chance before the end in the hope of being reborn. No character should emerge the same as when they got to or left Coyote Pass.


Player’s Role
To be invested in the shared setting with their Coyote, and to help promote the enjoyment of the game for all. This includes suggesting ideas in- and out-of character for others at the table, as well as actively driving scenes through to the conclusion of the game.


GM’s Role
To be invested in the shared setting, to help showcase how awesome the Coyotes can be in balance with how ruthless or powerful the Authority can be. To play up the importance of Innocents and value of Traits. To encourage and integrate suggestions from the Players as much as possible at the table, as well as actively describing success and failure in interesting ways and providing a comfortable environment for the group to share the stories of their characters through to the conclusion of the game.


Game Structure
1. Talk about the game, the setting (mundane or supernatural), the Authority, Coyotes, and Others.
2. What kind of contraband would need to be moved from one “world” to another?
3. Who would be a good Client for this?
4. Who would benefit or be hurt if the Contraband does or doesn’t make it through?
5. Consider Innocents.
6. Begin phrasing out and writing down a Contract with Duties required to fulfill it.
7. What Debts would need to be made to take on a Contract?
8. Match up Contracts with possible Debts.
9. Which Innocents would hold Traits?
10. Create Trait decks.
11. Make Coyotes: Draw Traits; finalize Contracts, Duties, Debts, and Innocents; 3 Courage points.
12. Start play with whichever Coyote has the most severe Debt nearest the left of the GM. Continue scene by scene in a clockwise manner until all of the Coyotes have died or have successfully found freedom beyond Coyote Pass.


Coyote Pass
This refers to both the specific paths as well as the means of travel by Coyotes through the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories. Only Coyotes seem to have the determination and the cunning to make these treacherous trips on a regular basis. Only Coyotes are desperate enough to risk it all to avoid the Authority to fulfill a Client’s Contract.


Edge of Forever Borderland Territories
It comes in two default versions:

Mundane: This is like the world we know, or think we know, in a stretch of land fraught with internal tension by local powers and the neighboring lands. The Coyotes smuggle contraband   between two or more lands with the constant threat of danger affecting them and those they care about — hoping one day to get away from it all, with as much of their life intact. If you feel the need to name real or invented cities or towns in your group, go ahead.
Supernatural: This takes place in a space between worlds, between mythologies and legends, where deities and powerful forces do business over and under the table. The Coyotes (named after the trickster deity) smuggle contraband between two or more worlds with the constant threat of danger affecting them and those they care about — hoping one day to get away from it all, with as much of their life intact. Feel free to borrow or invent identities for the worlds Coyote Pass connects.


Coyotes
It is a hard life with unknown dangers as constant companions. Coyote Pass is the closest thing to home you know. Your Clients expect you to come through, or else. The Authority is always dogging your heels and limiting your options. You may grow to trust other Coyotes who are your peers — it’s likely some Coyotes remind you of yourself. Or protect the Innocents you have faith in and who support you when none others could — when they are not caught up in your life.


Authority
In Coyote Pass there are two main groups in charge of each world that’s connected through Coyote Pass along the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories. Either group will investigate Coyote Pass if Coyotes disturb the status quo too much. Keep track of each separately during the game as the Coyotes influence the environment.

The Law: Government officials and their enforcers, such as police, soldiers, bureaucrats, diplomats, and other official agents. Default: Presence (1), Duration (1-4 scenes).
The Underworld: Unofficial agents, mercenaries, bounty hunters, black market fixers, gangsters and other criminal elements. Default: Presence (2), Duration (1-2 scenes).


AUTHORITY INVOCATION
Always roll a 1d6 for each the Law and Underworld when any of the following occurs:
Whenever a Contract is made: Law -1, Underworld +1.
Whenever a Contract is fulfilled: Law -1, Underworld +1.
Whenever a Contract is NOT fulfilled: Law +1, Underworld -1.
Whenever an Innocent is killed: Law -1, Underworld +1.
Whenever a Coyote is killed: Law +2, Underworld -2.
Whenever a Coyote ceases and leaves: Law +1, Underworld -1.
Whenever a Game of Chance (rolling dice out-of-character, and/or gambling in-character) occurs: Law +1, or Underworld +1.
Reset the Presence and Duration to default following an invocation of the Authority.

If you roll equal to or less than the Presence number then that Authority (perhaps both) will enter a scene for their Duration to make things interesting for Coyotes.

Note: Interacting with Authority is how Coyotes may create new Traits.

While the Law and Underworld are the major players, there are others involved.


Others
These include the numerous nameless inhabitants encountered by Coyotes on a regular basis who are non-Coyotes, non-Authority, such as Innocents.


Innocents
These are the Others who exist on either side of the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories and are connected to Coyotes. They themselves do not use Coyote Pass, and they are neither Coyotes nor Authority. Innocents hold answers and help for Coyotes, including pieces of their past, their true identities and other secrets. Unfortunately, Innocents often get caught up in the crossfire and traffic of Coyote Pass, sometimes even changing into a Coyote or Authority depending on the outcome. Each Coyote will have at least one Innocent who helps them with their Courage.
   Each Innocent holds onto 1 to 5 Coyote traits total. These traits are associated with one or more of the Coyotes connected to them. Innocents may help Coyotes gain a point of Courage by roleplaying through a scene about their relationship through flashbacks (such as how they met), or during their current relationship.

If an Innocent is hurt, it must discard one of its held Coyote Traits.
If an Innocent no longer holds any Traits, that Innocent is on the edge of dying, but can be pulled back by any Coyote who is willing to surrender a Trait (gaining a Debt with the Innocent).
If an Innocent is “killed,” but another Coyote dies in the process, the Innocent survives to become a Coyote, starting with one of the recently discarded Coyote Traits from one of the departing Coyotes. The new Coyote may be played by a Player (who currently is without a Coyote) or the GM (if no Players are free to take on a new Coyote).
If an Innocent is killed, but no Coyotes die in the process, the Innocent becomes an Authority (either in actual or through a different associated character) — Law or Underworld, as appropriate. Note: increase the Authority Presence and Duration by 1). The Authority is usually played by the GM. However, Players may be asked to take on roles during scenes in which their Coyote is absent, in exchange for a point of Courage.


Clients
The entity with an agenda for your Coyote. Clients hire Coyotes to smuggle contraband through Coyote Pass. If you fail your Client you may incur more Debt, or risk a confrontation with your Client. Some Clients are easier to manage than others; some Clients are members of the Authority; some clients are Innocents who have no one else to turn to; all Clients are invested in the completion of a Contract; and some Clients don’t give second chances.


Contracts
Contracts are agreements between you and your Client for you to fulfill your Duties in exchange for reduction of your Debts. How you negotiate the terms of your Contract may vary from Client to Client. However, the more Debt a Client may offer to reduce, the more likely if you fail, the Client will take it out on you, or those you care about. Games of chance to settle Duties and Debt obligations are a common form of Contract negotiation for Coyotes — though this often brings the Authority in earlier than desired.


Contraband
This is the concrete thing your Client expects you to move through Coyote Pass as per your Contract. It may be supplies, weapons, food, drugs, creatures, or even Authority members, or other Coyotes’ Innocents. It could also be something more symbolic, such as propaganda literature, tactical plans, or religious relics.


Duties
Every Coyote has duties to perform that may help relieve Debts or rescue Innocents. Duties are both goals and skills that are related to a Client and a Debt in a Contract. Duties are designed to help make your particular Coyote who and what they are. Duties involving high-speed chases, dank bar brawls, high-profile grifting should inform you about the Coyote you’ll be playing. Remember, failing in your Duties may increase your Debt or bring Hurt to an Innocent. The best Duties conflict with your Debts and create tension with other Coyotes.


A RULE OF THUMB
List 2-5 Duties in any Contract. Anything not covered by Duties falls to improvisation, taking on more Debt to gain a new Duty, or getting help from Innocents and other Coyotes.

Debts
Debts are obligations that keep you tethered to Coyote Pass. Debts are why you got here in the first place, even if you can’t recall the details. Coyotes have to adapt and mimic their surroundings to survive. As a result, they have lost parts of their identity (as Traits), severed connections to Innocents, or worse in order to keep going.
   However, each Debt needs to be connected to an Innocent. Debts include loans for your gear, medicine for family, favors owed from the past, addiction to the lifestyle that hurts you and others, oaths you swore to save another. The best Debts conflict with your Duties and create tension with other Coyotes.
 
Coyotes begin with 3 Debts and 3 Traits. Spread out 6 points among the three Debts (1 to 3 for each) to indicate how severe each is.
However, they may be more or less severe than each other in value, 1 to 3, with one being light, two being moderate, and three being serious. It is possible to have a maximum of 4 Debts, each at severe. Anything more would result in the death of the Coyote (see above).
When you have paid off your Debts your Coyote may leave Coyote Pass, free of their old life, ready to begin anew.
For each new Debt gained a Trait must be either given to an Innocent to hold, or lost forever in the Borderland Territories.
Coyotes may only have up to 4 Debts at any time. If put into a position where a 5th Debt would be accepted than the Coyote dies and must become an Authority (Law or Underworld, as appropriate) NPC — no longer a PC.


Traits
Traits are true things about a Coyote that they have lost and seek to regain, or aspects of life outside of Coyote Pass hoped to be acquired as part of a new life away from here. Traits are lost when Debts are gained. Traits may be regained from Innocents as Debts are paid off. Once a Coyote pays off all of their Debts they cease to be a Coyote. Each Coyote begins with 3 Traits and 3 Debts. Not all Traits a Coyote carries may be true to them. Some Traits may be ones mimicked from another Coyote in order to survive. Through the use of Innocents and Debts, Clients and Duties, Coyotes may be able to trade Traits for ones they hope to be true for now or for the life beyond Coyote Pass.

Generating Traits
At the beginning of the game session, each person in the group, including the GM, answers a series of questions about characters and writes them on notecards which will be shuffled into a number of Trait decks (typically six decks at start, though more decks may need to be created) — one for each question answered (Trait). Each Coyote Player will be dealt one random Trait from any three of the decks.

Lost Traits
Traits which must be discarded without an Innocent to hold, are lost to the Borderland Territories, in their own deck aside from the other Trait decks. Only a Coyote who is dying can locate and restore a Lost Trait for oneself, or another Coyote.

Courage
Courage is the measure of how much a Coyote has impact in the world at any time. Courage is earned and spent during play on a number of things as points. Only Coyotes have Courage, ranging from 0 to 12 points (pts).

SPEND
To create a new Trait (from interactions with Authority): 10 pts
To trade a Trait with an Innocent: 10 pts
To regain a Hurt Trait: 5 pts
To regain a Hurt Duty: 2 pt
To join another scene: 1 pt
To shift any one die up or down by one number: 1 pt

EARN
Helping another Coyote to fulfill a Contract: 5 pts
Succeeding to fulfill a Contract: 4 pts
Putting yourself into Harm’s way: 3 pts
Rescuing any Innocent from Death’s Edge: 2 pts
Creative use of a Duty or Debt: 1 pt


Games of Chance
Games of Chance enable change along the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories. They allow Coyotes opportunities to fulfill their Contracts and to maybe get free of their tether to Coyote Pass. However, whenever any Games of Chance occur in the game with dice rolls by the game group, OR, inside the game by any characters the likelihood that the Authority may be invoked or persist, increases (see above).


Conflict Resolution
In Coyote Pass, a fair bit of the resolution should come through narration based on the setup of Coyotes with their Contracts and Duties vs. appropriate Debts. If it fits within this scope, describe events without rolling any dice.

Optional: You could even bet using Courage points with 1d6 that you will roll a number equal to or less than the number of Courage points put forth. Use the difference for and against as described below to narrate the results. Note: Remember to increase the Authority invocation rating whenever a Game of Chance is used.

However, when things seem riskier than usual, or if there is a possibility of interesting success or failure, go to the dice at the climax of the scene — not for every back and forth task or action — wait for the build up and then make the roll and play off of the results. Note: Remember to increase the Authority invocation rating after rolling any dice.

This game uses 2d6 to make conflict tests. Only Players roll the dice.

Conflict success chart
Odds (1, 3, 5) AGAINST Coyotes: 1 - That Was Too Close; 3 - That Stings Bad (1 Hurt); 5 - What Just Happened? (2 Hurt)
Evens (2, 4, 6) FOR Coyotes: 2 - Squeaked By; 4 - Not too Shabby; 6 - Did You See That?   
Doubles are Criticals: Escalations or twists, suggested by others and ruled by the GM using the above Odds and Evens. Criticals are a big deal.


Hurt
Getting hurt is part of the life as a Coyote.

Should your Coyote ever get hurt while trying to fulfill their own Contract they will need to make an appropriate Trait inactive until it may be healed through spending Courage.
Should your Coyote ever get hurt while trying to fulfill another Coyote’s Contract they will need to make the appropriate Duty inactive until it may be healed through spending Courage.
If all of a Coyote’s Traits are inactive and a Coyote is Hurt again then that Coyote begins to die.
If no Innocents or Coyotes find a Coyote within two more turns then that Coyote dies cold and alone, lost to the Edge of Forever Borderland Territories.
Note: Any Coyote may spend Courage points, individually or collectively, on other Coyotes to help them recover from being Hurt if it is appropriate.



Game Chief, 2012, Idea 3

Theme: Last Chance — Design your game as if it might only be played once. After all, the world is going to end.

INGREDIENTS FOR COYOTE PASS
Words: Coyote [major use, PCs], Mimic [minor use, Traits]
Threads: Courage as currency (Thread # 27419) [major use, Courage points], Exposition, example of play, IIEE on the Edge of Forever (Thread # 13183) [minor use, setting], System design for 2 different games (Thread # 1691) [minor use, Games of Chance]

Twitter description: A RPG about smugglers searching for identity and life beyond the Edge.
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