I wanted to ask, after a conflict where we were opposing two weasels we won with 8-0 disposition. Our goal was something like that we wanted to kill or capture the weasels. Our compromise was that one weasel died and one got away harmed, but when we want to go after it our GM claims that is breaking the compromise. Should we be allowed to hunt it or just face the fact that it’s gone?
It got away. In the Story your characters can go looking for it, but its up to the GM whether its possible for you to actually find it somehow.
That being said, if its the player’s turn and you want to spend a check to track down the weasel, I don’t see why I would block that as long as you suffer whatever consequences the compromise required.
Hunting the escaped weasel would be a great use of your checks in the Players’ Turn.
I’m assuming that you lost some Dispo as well. What was your starting Dispo? If it was 16, then you should be giving up more than if it was 9. The fact that the Conflict resolved at 8-0 is not nearly as important as the difference between your starting and ending scores.
Did your GM allow you to have such a wishy-washy Goal? It should have been something very solid like “We will KILL both of the weasels” or “We will CAPTURE both of the weasels”. If your GM allowed it to be “something like killing or capturing the weasels”, then that’s weak.
If you’ having a hard time recalling exactly what the Goal was, I would also argue that that’s weak as well. This is all part of that “It’s not what you fight, it’s what you fight for” aspect of the game. In my game, I make sure that all of the players are 100% on board with their side’s Goal before we choose a single move for a Conflict.
As James and Daniel have stated, the Players’ Turn is the perfect opportunity to tell the GM what you’d like to accomplish beyond what happened in his phase of the game. I hope you and your patrol didn’t play things too safe and boring, and that you instead managed to earn plenty of Checks so that you can go after that slippery rodent. If not, no problem; there’s always the Players’ Turn of your next game. If you truly think that it’s important to get that other weasel for some reason, let your GM know that it’s important to you, and to be prepared for the fact that you’ll probably try to track it down later. If he keeps fighting you on this, you might want to consider implementing some changes. If this were my game, I would probably require one Check to track the weasel, and then another to either instigate another Conflict or some other form of dealing with it. If I wanted that particular weasel to escape because it had some kind of important role in future events, I would either accelerate the timeline of those events, or find a way for that particular weasel to “hand the torch” to another weasel or weasel-friend, who is even more dangerous and/or hard to deal with.
My apologies if parts of this reply seem blunt. I run a fairly hard corps Mouse Guard game, and my players are used to their mice getting beaten up pretty badly. They’re also used to being able to “take the stick” when it’s the Players’ Turn, and turn that beating back onto all of the Evils of the world, so all in all, we end up battered and bruised, but ultimately happy. If your GM is not “surrendering the stick”, it might be time to have some conversations about what everyone expects out of the game, what you think is working and not working, and what changes might be in order. If you’re just starting out with Mouse Guard, remember that it’s not just a new type of roleplaying game for most players, but also for the GMs.
Here’s a question, why did you want to chase that weasel?
teehee; a weasel is not a rodent.
ok, seriously, I agree with slashdevnull’s response very strongly. The starting and ending Dispo is the strongest determinant in the compromise; the Goal needs to be a strong determinant in the premise of the conflict.
The Goal should not be a direct, binary opposite of the enemy. So, if the patrol states a goal of, “We will kill both these weasels, if needed, while trying to capture them alive,” the opposite side shouldn’t be saying, “We’ll get away alive and avoid capture.” Those two goals run pretty much directly against each other–like a game of chicken. What happens in the case of a double win? Can the team and the weasels both have their goal? Not if the goals are such binary opposites.
In contrast, make sure the goals are askew, but crossing each other. Without trying to rewrite the conflict, you could look at, “We will kill both these weasels if needed while trying to capture them alive,” as the GM works up something askew for the weasels, like, “We will carry our message to the tunnel lord even if it is the last thing we ever do.” Then, even in the case of double win both teams can have their goal. Also, in the more likely event of a single team winning with some degree of compromise, it works in an exciting twist of plot.
I’ll resist my desire to write more into the example. I’d go on for hours.
Using the Player’s Turn to follow-thru on conflicts which were not fulfilled is totally okay. Yes, if the compromise allowed for one weasel to get away, he’s done so–right then. Then you’ve finished the GM turn with any other obstacles, and now you spend a check to start a new conflict (maybe a chase conflict), with a new goal (maybe, ‘we must not let him report what he learned’), using a new premise (e.g. we’ll hunt him down, since he got away).
Alright, just for that, I’m going to have to disagree with the rest of your post.
The weasels were hiding in a badger hole and we wanted to know what became of the badger James (on top of that it’s best if the tunnel lord never gets to know about us).
That sounds like it would have made a great Conflict Goal.
Your Goal should really be what you ultimately want to get when the Conflict is resolved, not what you need to do in order to get what you want. The “what you need to do” part (running off the weasels, killing them, capturing them, interrogating them) should all support the Goal.
Yeah, the way it looks killing the weasels is a triviality. Compromise should have centered on the desire to know what happened to the badger and not be discovered. Then you can imagine a compromise where (depending on how much dispo lost) you learn about the badger but the weasel escapes to tell the tunnel lord. That’s the real result here. The escaped weasel means nothing if you just track him down before he’s ratted you out, without some cost somewhere.
noclue: Weasels can’t rat someone out; they’re not rodents.
Bill: Hopefully these are helpful replies. The way that Mouse Guard runs is a totally different experience for a lot of gamers, so don’t be discouraged if it sounds like we’re all saying “Duh! You’re doing it wrong!” – It usually takes a few sessions of diligent play for most groups to really get the hang of how the system works.
I know, tried new systems a couple of times and it always takes a while to get your bearings. I appreciate all the help!