Spiraller
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Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Fri 12 Jun 2020, 18:47

A panic that triggers a panic in others, which triggers a panic again to everyone including the original person who panicked, which yet again triggers a panic to everyone, etc. etc.

Is this how it's supposed to work?
 
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Fenhorn
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Fri 12 Jun 2020, 19:00

I think that you are only going to get one panic roll per "event". So if you got panicked so another character get panicked, you don't roll again because of that, it is from the same "event". That is how I see it anyway.
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Diego
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Fri 12 Jun 2020, 19:50

A panic that triggers a panic in others, which triggers a panic again to everyone including the original person who panicked, which yet again triggers a panic to everyone, etc. etc.

Is this how it's supposed to work?
Yes you can, it is unlikely but it can happen, it can also get quite complicated and difficult to sort out. For instance if someone gets 'scream'

Since anyone who has already made a panic test, will then make a second one and resolve it as per the rules on pg 104 (more panic). This can mean someone else gets scream, forcing everyone to roll again. Everyone is still only resolving 'one panic' as per the more panic rules, but will get a worse panic result than what they originally got.

I just advise you put a cap on how many times you let 'extra' roll effects trigger. I work it out on an adhoc basis depending on the situation. If someone screams, we do the second panic test, but if that triggers another 'scream' effect, I don't them ask for a third round of panic tests. We just have one big scream fest and move on.
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Vindictus
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Fri 12 Jun 2020, 20:23

A panic that triggers a panic in others, which triggers a panic again to everyone including the original person who panicked, which yet again triggers a panic to everyone, etc. etc.

Is this how it's supposed to work?

yes its how it works. and its incredibly stupid.

an easy fix is to change panic results 12-14 give everyone +1 stress instead of causing everyone to panic.

that gets rid of the ridiculous panic cascades

Yes you can, it is unlikely but it can happen

unfortunately its not unlikely. Its very common especially in act 3 when everyone has a lot of accumulated stress.

all it requires is one person to roll a 12-14 on the panic table and make everyone else panic. And then for a second person to roll a 12-14 on the panic table to make everyone else including the first person panic again with a higher panic result which causes everybody else to panic a third time and it sets off a chain cascade of panics. Since the panic result escalates by +1 each time someone panics eventually everyone is rolling 12-14s and making everyone else panic repeatedly.

the first time it happens its funny. the second time it happens people dont want to play the game anymore.

its a serious flaw in the game system that really should be fixed.
 
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Diego
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Sat 13 Jun 2020, 15:49

all it requires is one person to roll a 12-14 on the panic table and make everyone else panic. And then for a second person to roll a 12-14 on the panic table to make everyone else including the first person panic again with a higher panic result which causes everybody else to panic a third time and it sets off a chain cascade of panics. Since the panic result escalates by +1 each time someone panics eventually everyone is rolling 12-14s and making everyone else panic repeatedly.
Yep, already described that. I just don't see it happen often. But I'm guessing from you mentioning act 3 you play a lot of cinematics, most of my use of this game is campaign play. Only in really horrorfying situations does stress tend to reach the level where someone hits 12-14 and then even with triggering a second panic in others, most of them don't reach 12-14 and so it stops with the second roll. I personally wouldn't change the panic results of 12 to 14, just limit cascades by saying no more panic results after the second (what people land on, they finish on). But that's mostly because I've had a few great scenes, where one person has totally lost their sh*t and that's triggered everybody else around them and has been rather satisfying. Resulted in a fair few bodies one of times as well, beautiful horror moment.
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Vindictus
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Sun 14 Jun 2020, 18:44

I dont like automatic panic or how the panic table works in general. I feel its a bad mechanic because it often unfairly punishes people who keep their stress moderately low just because they can end up rolling a 5 or 6 and still get a bad panic result.

I also disagree immensely that someone screaming at you, running away, or going berserk on an alien would cause anyone else to panic. it wouldnt. it would cause stress but not automatic panic.

IMO you should only panic if your stress is high. you shouldnt panic before then. panic is a result of stress accumulating until it reaches a breaking point. you shouldnt panic if you havent reached that breaking point yet.

I also dont like items like naproleve either that magically reset all stress. managing stress should be a key aspect of the game and there should be consequences for poor stress management. you shouldnt just be able to inject a naproleve and ignore those consequences. Changing how naproleve works was one of the first things I did.

The panic aspect of the game could definitely be improved. the way pushing works is perfect and I really like the stress mechanic in general. But the panic side of things can be absolutely miserable for players and I often feel like it doesnt add anything to the narrative to just have players randomly panic for no good reason. It just doesnt work in campaigns to have players constantly panicking every game session.
 
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Diego
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Mon 15 Jun 2020, 23:45


I also disagree immensely that someone screaming at you, running away, or going berserk on an alien would cause anyone else to panic. it wouldnt. it would cause stress but not automatic panic.
That's cool, we can agree to disagree, Though just for reference, if someone makes a panic roll, they still might not panic, a result of 1-6 does absolutely nothing. Though if I was already stressed out and then someone started screaming uncontrollably I feel it might tip me over the edge.

I also dont like items like naproleve either that magically reset all stress. managing stress should be a key aspect of the game and there should be consequences for poor stress management. you shouldnt just be able to inject a naproleve and ignore those consequences. Changing how naproleve works was one of the first things I did.
Personally I'm fine with Naproleve, though behind the scenes I am playing with it. For one I keep it as a controlled substance. You can't just buy it over the counter, it is something that the only person who get easily get it is the ship medic (think doctor with prescription pad kind of benefits). Secondly I am also keeping track of how much of it the players have had and how frequently, as I am going to make addiction part of it.
The panic aspect of the game could definitely be improved. the way pushing works is perfect and I really like the stress mechanic in general. But the panic side of things can be absolutely miserable for players and I often feel like it doesnt add anything to the narrative to just have players randomly panic for no good reason. It just doesnt work in campaigns to have players constantly panicking every game session.
My only issue with the panic table is that my players are getting to the point now where they know it. Like by rote they can immediately say what panic result 7 does as unsurprisingly it's the one we see the most. 8 is pretty much at that point as well. I really am going to have to expand the table, or more to the point, have alternative outcomes for the different results.

Incidentally if you happen to do something like that, let me know as I'd love to see what you come up with.
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Vindictus
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Tue 16 Jun 2020, 02:12

That's cool, we can agree to disagree, Though just for reference, if someone makes a panic roll, they still might not panic, a result of 1-6 does absolutely nothing. Though if I was already stressed out and then someone started screaming uncontrollably I feel it might tip me over the edge.

Youre right they may not panic. But they can also be at stress of only 6-7, then roll a 5-6 and get a panic result of 12+, and trigger off a cascade of panics among other players. The problem I have with the panic mechanic is the sheer randomness of it. I dont like the fact you roll 1d6 and add it to your stress level, that adds way too much swinginess to the panic result.

Personally I'm fine with Naproleve,

im not fine with it mainly because it costs $20. which literally makes it something you can buy at any store and stockpile in huge quantities. and you cant really stop your players from doing that if you go by the rules in the book. because youll have a hell of a time explaining why something that only costs $20 isnt readily available everywhere in huge quantities.

naproleve is very much an item that shouldve been expensive and rare. not cheap and common. thats one of the first things i changed in my campaign I made it much more expensive and rare. that makes naproleve something special that the players want to save until a dire moment of need. rather than something they constantly abuse to circumvent the stress mechanic.

Incidentally if you happen to do something like that, let me know as I'd love to see what you come up with.

I already came up with some alternative panic rules theyre in my colonial marines campaign thread.


Essentially whenever you roll a 1 on the stress die (or automatically panic) you no longer roll 1d6 and instead the panic result you use is equal to your (current stress + 7) - (your empathy attribute).

Then the GM can decide to add or subtract 1 from the result if the GM feels the panic result warrants being slightly more or less severe and that also allows the GM to add some variation to the panic results.

That has the advantage of making panic way less random and higher empathy contributes to your ability to deal with stress. That helps make the empathy attribute less useless. I definitely think empathy is the weakest attribute by far.


And I also dont think panic results 12-14 should cause other people to panic. They should give other people +1 stress instead. That avoids the problem of panic cascading out of control to the point where everyone is panicking repeatedly over and over in a single turn. Like I said before panic cascading out of control is funny the first time it happens but its a real turnoff for players when it happens multiple times. It exposes a flaw in the panic system that really needs to be addressed.
 
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Diego
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Re: Is it possible to keep panicking nonstop?

Tue 16 Jun 2020, 03:00

im not fine with it mainly because it costs $20. which literally makes it something you can buy at any store and stockpile in huge quantities. and you cant really stop your players from doing that if you go by the rules in the book. because youll have a hell of a time explaining why something that only costs $20 isnt readily available everywhere in huge quantities.

naproleve is very much an item that shouldve been expensive and rare. not cheap and common. thats one of the first things i changed in my campaign I made it much more expensive and rare. that makes naproleve something special that the players want to save until a dire moment of need. rather than something they constantly abuse to circumvent the stress mechanic.
It is cheap and I didn't bother to change the price, instead I just made it a classified substance. There are many drugs in the real world that are cheap, but are not available over the counter. I just made it something that legitimately they can only ever possess a small quantity of, and if they want to get more then it comes down to getting it under the counter, which is way more expensive. And as I mentioned, there are going to be other side effects that make this wonder drug much less wonderful and far more interesting. I do certainly find it a little bland for something that does affect the mechanic so much.
Essentially whenever you roll a 1 on the stress die ...
Interesting work around, I imagine it works quite well with the type of campaign you've talked about running.
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