How many factors are you typically using?

I’ve run “Trouble n Grasslake” twice so far. I’ve noticed (and had it commented to me) that, badass Nature 8 turtle aside, obstacles tended to be pretty high for most tests, at least compared to the skills the sample PCs had. E.g., Sloan’s player wanted to make some replacement window-panes, but even a generous reading of the factors for Glazier had the task at Ob 3. With her Glazier 2, even with help, that’s pretty tough.

So, am I just factoring in too many factors? It seems that even basic tasks will net Ob 3, which is tough for even a skilled (Skill 3-4) PC. Or, is that the intent?

I tend to use a lot of Ob 4s and even Ob 5s, especially for things that involve the whole patrol.

My obs have ranged from 2 to 7 in the last two sessions, lots of ob 3 & ob 4.

Loads of opposed rolls, with opposition pools of 6-12d. (Which means, roughly, equivalent to Obs 3-6…)

It’s the intent. She succeeds, no sweat off anyone’s nose. She fails, you either twist or you give a condition. In many RPGs, failures are “dead ends” but in MG it’s almost the opposite.

Very true. But failure+twist still means that the player does not get their intent, right?

Once they pass the twist or receive a condition, they achieve whatever it was that caused the condition/twist. So if the intent is to cross a stream and they fail and you apply a condition (Tired for having a hard time getting across, for example), they’re across.

If you twist, once the twist is resolved or back-burnered, they accomplish their intent as well.

At least, by the letter of the rules.

You guys are referring to p.91?

Alternately, if the twist is successfully dealt with, the patrol moves back on track for their mission. They dust off their paws and say, “Now that that’s over with, we can get back to business.” Move the story forward as if the patrol had overcome the initial obstacle that caused the twist.

I guess I didn’t read it that way, as the basic definition of Twist is (on p.91 and 68): “You can fail to overcome the obstacle and the GM can inject a twist into the game…” I didn’t think the idea was that the players get their intent no matter what. There are three outcomes: succeed, fail + twist, or fail + success but with condition. The Conditions of Success passages are the only ones that say the players achieve their intent despite biffing the roll.

I mean, the example of finding the dead grain peddler’s body in the snake doesn’t seem to like achievement of intent. If they had made the roll, the peddler would be alive.

Not really. The goal is “find the grain peddler” with the side goal of “determine if he’s a traitor” (or find evidence of it). Both are achieved regardless of the twist: The peddler is found on a successful Scout check but also found (dead) with the snake twist. After all, Scout doesn’t determine state of existence, only finding something/someone. :slight_smile: That happens, succeed or fail.

What the twists/conditions do is make it harder to succeed overall by beating down the guardmice over the course of the GM Turn.

Then what stops the GM from deciding that the grain peddler is dead no matter what the outcome of the roll is? I.e., what’s the difference between the player succeeding on the roll and the GM saying he’s dead, and the player failing the roll and the GM saying he’s dead? Basically, what does “harder to succeed” mean when the players succeed no matter what?

I dunno. BW and BE do not work like this. When you biff a roll, you don’t get your intent, period. If you declare your intent and know you get it no matter what, it’s just the “cost” that varies, that seems pretty boring. What reason is there not to just ask for the sky every time you make a test?

I mean, conflicts don’t work this way. If you lose, you lose, compromise or no.

The GM deciding that he’s dead anyway would mean that some OTHER result would be the twist for failing the search roll. Perhaps a hatching batch of little snakes…

I’m gonna split this to a new thread.

I think the other thread will eventually lead to this answer …

Obstacles look “tough” for two reasons:

  1. It allows other mice to help. “What’s gonna work? Teamwork!”
  2. Failure at the check doesn’t mean you don’t get what you want … you might have to pay a little bit more to get to that success.

You can also look at it this way … the only way to advance a skill is with BOTH successes and failures.

Most PC’s will have at least one skill at 4, and often a trait, a wise, and a tool, for 7d, and 50%. Add one helper and you have 8d, and is about 66% likely to make 4s and pass an Ob3. Adding a die (9d) from a second helper pushes it to about 76%.
Ob 3 isn’t tough for a normal group of 4 mice with one having skill 4 and the rest having some relevant help skill. With 3 mice, it’s still likely, without artha.

7d outcomes:1x0 7x1, 21x2 35x3, 35x4, 21x5, 7x6, 1x7 /128
Ob 1: 99.2%
Ob 2: 35+35+21+7+1=99/128=77.4%
Ob 3: 35+21+7+1=64/128=50%
Ob 4: 21+7+1=29/128 = 22.7%
Ob 5: 7+1=8/128 = 6.3%
Ob 6: 1 = 1/128 = 0.8%

attaining 9d isn’t that hard, either. For a lone mouse, it’s skill 6 (peak), Wise, Tool, and Trait. In a group of four, that’s skill 3, 3 helpers, a wise, a tool, and a trait.

Ob 3 is only hard when alone and low skilled.

Aramis, I think you’re being pretty generous. In the Grasslake scenario, the PCs have a lot of skills at 2, and all of their Traits are level 1, so are one-use barring recharge, and wises that aren’t always relevant. What you’re describing is a best-case scenario. Against the turtle, they are looking at a minimum of 8 dice in opposition.

Which may very well be intentional, of course.

Skill at 2, +wise, +3 for team is still 6d; if they can cobble up an advantage… 7d. If they can coble up a tool, as well, 8d.

The other thing is I didn’t run it with stock characters, but with my group. Two of whom were using stocks, but not the grasslake characters.

The stock characters have 2 fighter 4’s, plus weapons, plus 3 help, those are 7D-8D throws in combat, should they fight it, more if they recruit locals.

That mission is pretty damned easy, once you get to the turtle… split into two teams, filling out with NPC’s to 4mouse teams… one defends while the other attacks. On your 1st attack, spend your persona for adding nature, and you shoot up to 11D-12D, and if you get several 6’s, fate those. Beast can be taken in one round with a little luck and some persuasion, and some Artha.

To that group of characters, it should look like a nail to be hammered; it’s their only strong area.

I had two players with Loremouse at 2… they chose to talk, and then used Persuade 4 and deceiver 3 to talk it away. (Used Conflict-Duel of Wits…)

Ah, I see. We were running with just two PCs one session and three the next (ergo, less help). Not to mention, we were all pretty green with the rules. I see better some of the possible synergies. Thanks!

This has been driving me crazy. What in tarnation is this Artha thing I keep seeing mentioned? Is that BW term? An acronym? What?

It’s the collective BW/BE term for Persona and Fate points.