Looking for feedback on my new game - Low Fantasy Detectives

Started by SamSlayde, December 04, 2011, 06:31:37 AM

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Thanks for the support guys!

You have given me a lot of great things to think about and helped me find some things that should really be in the book that are missing. Keep it coming!

I'm going to keep collecting feedback from a number of sources for a while, then start working on implementing it into the text.
Dungeon City Blues
Low Fantasy Detective Procedural


I had a great conversation yesterday with a friend about this game and things it's missing.  A couple of great ideas came out of it.

1.) Time - Time is important in an investigation, having the GM set up a time line of future events that the perp will try and accomplish, or even other criminals, will put pressure on the detectives to get the right answers in time. It would restrict what they have time to do before something bad happens, and the deadline is not easily known so the players have to assume that they are on a tight schedule.

As Time passes, other crimes can be committed, by the same perp or another, the case load can begin tot build up as many things need addressing.  This can start to encourage the characters to cut corners, to maybe "cheat" a little to get some cases closed, or put someone they know is guilty, but can't prove it yet, in jail. This directly relates to...

2.) Responsibility - This is a big deal for law enforcement. What are you expected to do? What are you responsible for? What are crimes you are to look into and how are you to do it?  A core part of this is the desired behavior of the detectives. What are their limits? What extremes are they allowed to go to in order to solve a case? What are they not allowed to do?

Once this has been compiled; the players can now choose to follow these guidelines or go against them in order to make their lives easier for the moment, ie: No evidence? Just kick in the guys door and search his home without permission, that'll turn up something. But going against them would start to build up corruption in the precinct, something I already have a mechanic in progress for, and cause problems for them in the future in exchange for making something easier right now.

What do you think? Does anyone have any good or bad experiences with games that have players adhere to a schedule and/or a set of expected responsibilities?
Dungeon City Blues
Low Fantasy Detective Procedural

Paul Czege

Jared Sorensen's Time to Kill has interesting time management mechanics.

"[My Life with Master] is anything but a safe game to have designed. It has balls, and then some. It is as bold, as fresh, and as incisive  now as it was when it came out." -- Gregor Hutton

David Berg

Serial Homicide Unit is relevant here, but the site isn't super informative.  I'll try to come back and describe the game in a bit.
here's my blog, discussing Delve, my game in development


Thanks for the links!

Time to Kill looks awesome and gave me some great ideas, tracking time with tokens and using different ones to randomize events, very cool, Mr Sorenson has some good stuff going on there.

Serial Homicide looks interesting, but you're right about the site. I'd like to know more, is it a LARP? Long-term/Multi-session or one off? It kind of looks like one of those Solve the Murder party games.
Dungeon City Blues
Low Fantasy Detective Procedural

David Berg

I'm pretty sure S.H.U. is a one-shot.  Here's a page with a little more info, plus links to podcasts with (I assume) deeper coverage.

If you have any specific questions, post 'em here!  The game's creators told me they'll stop by to give answers at some point.
here's my blog, discussing Delve, my game in development


  So, I generally shy away from mystery games because of the issues that the others discussed previously (I.e., how clever do I have to be?). Typically, I am not clever enough.
  I have found two exceptions:
1) InSpectres, in this game the players make up the clues if they roll well enough and the GM does if they don't. What I found was this game benefits from prep, but falls down if the GM has the solution already in mind.
2) It sounds like you want to avoid this kind of play, and if that is the case, then the other kind of mystery that I do enjoy are the kinds similar to the TV show criminal minds, where the world operates with a solid set if rules and those rules help you solve the case.

  Finally, I wanted to suggest a mechanic, maybe call them clue points. In a heavy prep game the GM starts with them and gives them to the players that have a clue. In an improv game, the players start with them and give them to the GM when they get a clue.  And if it is mxed, some of each has tokens.
Dave M
Author of Legends of Lanasia RPG (Still in beta)
My blog
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