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Jynk
Posts: 62
Joined: Sat 17 Dec 2016, 01:46
Location: Round Rock, TX

Re: Problems of Setting

Thu 29 Dec 2016, 16:09

Absolutely. I do agree with you, though, that a pool of health points don't work nearly as well for this game as X number of successful attempts vs failed attempts, and even then that should probably work only with Showdowns or other major Troubles to keep the events special. Combat, or rather.. conflict isn't exactly touched on much in the Alpha, so speculation on how it should be handled is all we have at the moment.

How will you have your group fight or confront the Goshawk? How will you determine how the fight goes, and what the outcome is? Exchange of ideas is what this forum is about after all.  :D
"What matters most is how well you walk through the fire." - Charles Bukowski
 
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pelorus
Posts: 56
Joined: Wed 21 Dec 2016, 10:32
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Re: Problems of Setting

Thu 29 Dec 2016, 17:24


How will you have your group fight or confront the Goshawk? How will you determine how the fight goes, and what the outcome is? Exchange of ideas is what this forum is about after all.  :D
Pretty much exactly as presented on page 114 at the very bottom. The bird has Force 2 so to defeat it, the kids need to get two successes with Force. What that outcome represents could be a dead bird, but it could equally mean:
  • It escapes and comes to plague them later. A 'brain' to other lesser animals  
  • The implant is knocked loose and it flees. Just a normal bird.
I actually find the dead bird to be the least satisfying outcome  
It's a goshawk, not a roc. The kids are meant to come away shaken and scratched, not missing eyes or dying.
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Writer of The 23rd Letter, SpaceNinjaCyberCrisis XDO and ZOMBI.
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cwilsontrull
Posts: 35
Joined: Sat 17 Dec 2016, 03:20

Re: Problems of Setting

Thu 29 Dec 2016, 18:12

What I like about this system (and yes, I know the system is still being written) is that it harkens upon the early days of role-playing. I started playing RPGs back in the day when D&D had only one book. The house rule back then was If it wasn't in the book, you role play it out. Many of the games today have rules for everything. Fall off a rock? Turn to pg 18. Want to use a non-proficient weapon with your feet? turn to pg 937. Want more butterscotch topping on your sundae? As Snape would say, turn to pg 394. TftL has a basic core of mechanics to deal with a lot of scenarios, but what I love about it is it leaves a lot up to the storyteller. 

When I first started reading the PDF, my mind was racing on different scenarios I could put my players through. One that kept popping up was a single kid cornered and up against a group of 5 hoods. How would I handle it if the PC said that she wanted to stand her ground and fight them? Well, she was definitely out numbered, and while a little 14 year old kicking the butt of five 16-17 year olds would be awesome, it was highly unlikely (unless her name was Julie Pierce and she had been taught by Pat Morita). 

So I thought of a quick and dirty way of moving the story along and role playing it out, without out having a lot of back and forth rolls. Have the PC make one role - Force (Body) adding any bonus dice for items and luck that she wanted to use -  and for every success she would take out one hood. She would get a few good hits in, taking out one maybe two of the hoods, but more than likely they would end up beating him to a pulp. And if she took them all out? Well, then the dice gods had smiled upon her, and far be it from me to take that away from her.

The system even gives the power to PCs themselves. I say that if the PC is willing to play their kid losing an eye, I'd let them do it. I would make it affect some of their skills (anything dealing with vision), but if played right, that character would be a badass. I mean, look what it did for Carl.
 
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pelorus
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Re: Problems of Setting

Thu 29 Dec 2016, 21:38

That's an interesting scenario. A kid with, say, Body 4 and Force 3 and a special item (say, a nunchaku) would have 9 dice to roll. Assuming that only three of the five hoods can be in the melee at any one time, if the player got four successes, she would seriously demoralise the attackers in the first bout.

If I read the rules right, the first success would establish the hit and the GM could allow the buying of three Force bonus effects - three KOs. Or one KO and two Intimidates.
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Writer of The 23rd Letter, SpaceNinjaCyberCrisis XDO and ZOMBI.
http://lategaming.com
 
Nilo
Posts: 137
Joined: Thu 14 Apr 2011, 11:55

Re: Problems of Setting

Fri 30 Dec 2016, 10:04

One thing that should not be overlooked when comparing the system with other rpgs is that conditions isn't exactly the same as hit points. When you miss a roll you don't only loose "hit points"/ conditions, you actually fail and something bad happens. And you can't do the same thing again, if you don't press the roll. In some fights the entire fight is done in one roll, another fight is played out step by step, whatever seems most natural to the group/ the gamemaster. The Kids seldom go alone into deadly battles with a number of foes, but if they do, and the grupp seems to think that the fight is importent enough to get a lot of time and focus, I would let the player roll several times, first to get a good hit on the leader with the nunchucs, then to dodge an attack with a hammer and so forth. And when the player misses she actually fails, and sometimes she also gets a condition. This means the fight could be over in one roll, if it seems plausibel. The Kid doesn't manage to dodge the hammer to her head, and when she wakes up she is lying on the concrete floor, alone, freezing, and the bad guys are gone and they stole her robot. 

The way Cwilsontrull describes it could also be a good way to handle a fight, a beaten foe for each Effect. And the Gamemaster could actually also say that it's impossible to win a fight against several older foes and describe how they beat the Kid to pulp and take her stuff. 

A good thing to do if the Gamemaster want's the game to be harder is to demand more successes. The Kids need two successes to jump safely from the burning house, not one. And don't be afraid of hard consequenses, they could actually become new Trouble. The robot helps the Kid and all seems good and dandy, but later it stands outside the Kid's house in the middle of the night, it seems to follow him around, and when his older sister yells at him the robot comes bursting trough the wall attacking his sister. 

And, as someone wrote, this is more of a narrative game than a crunchier one with focus on numbers and tactics. The important stuff is what the Kids feel, what they do, how they do it. Most often they will succeed with solving the Mystery, but what does it cost them? 

(Sorry for any miss-spellings, I´m writing with my swedish phone which keeps "translating" words to swedish, it's a mess... :))
 
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pelorus
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Re: Problems of Setting

Fri 30 Dec 2016, 11:55

Nicely put.

Narrative importance is the gauge for me. Is it moving the story forward?

If an encounter with the Mooed gang is important then getting a single condition and losing their lunch money seems appropriate to establish the gang as bad guys. Maybe set them up for some revenge when the players get their Robot controller.

If the player provokes the Moped gang then a consequence could be being beaten unconscious and having their bikes, backpacks and lunch money taken. Maybe their eyebrows shaved. Or their trousers ripped (thinking what happened to Wolfgang in Explorers)
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Writer of The 23rd Letter, SpaceNinjaCyberCrisis XDO and ZOMBI.
http://lategaming.com
 
Nilo
Posts: 137
Joined: Thu 14 Apr 2011, 11:55

Re: Problems of Setting

Fri 30 Dec 2016, 13:14

Nicely put.

Narrative importance is the gauge for me. Is it moving the story forward?

If an encounter with the Mooed gang is important then getting a single condition and losing their lunch money seems appropriate to establish the gang as bad guys. Maybe set them up for some revenge when the players get their Robot controller.

If the player provokes the Moped gang then a consequence could be being beaten unconscious and having their bikes, backpacks and lunch money taken. Maybe their eyebrows shaved. Or their trousers ripped (thinking what happened to Wolfgang in Explorers)
The last part seems like a missad roll, not a consequence. A consequence is a hit, but with a but :) Maybe they chase the Moped gang away but then see that the gang has stolen something important, or they get badly hurt in the process. What will mam say when you come home with blood all over your new shirt, especially as she just lost her job and has told you how important it is that you all take care of your things, cause you don't have any money?

The Gamemaster should use the Problems and Pride to get those consequence extra nasty... :)
 
edd
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun 01 Jan 2017, 17:20

Re: Problems of Setting

Sun 01 Jan 2017, 18:14

Hi Björn,

Thanks for reply & video. I can get an idea of what you say, but Loop scenario seems to imply, for instance AI from robots. It does not bother me, and the magnetrine effect (which definitely would benefit from a more detailed info) could help to bridge the gap, but I come back to previous point: how can we explain gasoline squattest cars and gaussian carriers living side by side, two-floors buildings and huge eery illuminated high tech towers, or time portals with arcades. If it exists as a government/big corporation secret tech that does not affect normal people's life it is one thing. If it involves some other degree of integration, I really would need more explanation. Setting stresses the difference btw normal, boring life and Misteries, but I feel I do not understand how normal life is in these alternate 80's.

Thanks for any comments!
For me the setting is in part to do with how a 10 year old sees the world; the mundane and the amazing, and the amazing disregarded as mundane; the majority of them do not seek to explain the logic of the discrepancy but merely accept it as the way the world is, and hence the setting is also unexplained.
Having said that, it may well not be 'secret tech' but cost and desire; People cannot afford gaussian carriers, and business, in the 80s of the Loop, has yet to find a way to reduce the cost of mass production of 'small' gaussian ships to reach the consumer market.
 
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Intkhiladi
Posts: 13
Joined: Sat 13 Aug 2016, 07:35

Re: Problems of Setting

Sun 29 Jan 2017, 16:10

I believe that some take the word "game" as "numbers to win or lose". I prefer to see TFTL as a Scooby-Doo game. Yeah, you could lose but is not necessary to cut in half the kids (unless you play Friday the 13 ot Texas Chaisaw Massacre version of the game). I'm not playing the way if my players don't do all the right things the Universe will dissapear or the nasty things form the Upside Down devour all of us.

Im not concerned about "how technology works". You had to see it from the perspective of the kids: some ships fly, some had robots.  If you don't like it you could take it away and play ladventures as the X-files or Stranger Things. Or like Half-life videogame. Perhaps robots are part of a new goverment project and only a few had acces to it (scientist, universities, some goverment agencies...). Imagine a campaign about a fugitive robot that only wants freedom like in the Short Circuit movie.

The world is yours, you can make whatever you want :D
 
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Björn Hellqvist
Posts: 133
Joined: Wed 07 Dec 2016, 20:41
Location: Sweden

Re: Problems of Setting

Mon 30 Jan 2017, 12:10

I'm for suspension of disbelief. There should be a logical basis for the setting, if only to provide the GM with a framework. Also, being able to give a plausible explanation to the players help with the immersion. Just brushing it off with "don't ask, it works that way" is a cheap way out.
My life fades. The vision dims. All that remains are memories. I remember a time of chaos, ruined dreams, this wasted land.
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