Background characters

I saw this very cool thread over on reddit

Basically you have some people playing a character in charge of a faction who gets limited information on the goings on in the game after each session, and gets to spend some of their limited resources to take action. This sounds like a fantastic way to make more conflict in games.

Nice, this could make some really cool scenarios.
Also, it gives the players a more open world.

I’ve done this by email for someone who wanted to play but couldn’t make it to the games. He was the Dark Lord the players were trying to cast down, and he had to get information from and give orders to his legions of incompetent minions. He was executing them for failing him for the last time in a week.

This works especially well with BW, where the skills scale agnostically and well. You can have an entire slow-paced game of administrators and rulers acting entirely through underlings. Just make sure the underlings’ success depends on the ruler’s Strategy, Logistics, Administration, Accounting, and so on and so forth.