I’ve just got my copy of the box set last week and finally finding time to read it. Naturally, a few things raised some questions so I decided to sign up and ask. I do apologize if my questions have been asked before or if it is answered in some part of the book; this is my first read-through and I’m not even halfway through the book yet.
I decided to start with the New Rules New Missions book simply because it was smaller and took a look at the missions. Is it just me or is this like a “choose your own adventure” type of game? ie, players are going down a path, then they have choices to make (each choice and result pre-mapped out) and the next part of the story depends on which path they took. Reading the missions reminded me of my basic programming computer course, a lot of “if-then” statements. Are missions supposed to be mapped this way?
Then I got to reading the main book (beautiful art, btw!), and page 11 mentions Unplanned Stories… which kinda goes against the way I understand how the missions work, wherein the GM knows the story (or stories), he just doesn’t know which one the players end up with.
On page 68-69 (Failure), it says that the GM can deal with failures in either two ways – twist the story or succeed with a condition. I’m thinking right now that if a player gets a Success, the story continues as usual, so the simplest thing to do is if the player fails, the story continues as usual but the players get a condition as well. Also, on the example on page 69, it makes it sound as if the GM cooked up the overturned cart scenario right then and there. “He decides that the patrol is too late…” No, he doesn’t decide. He’s planned that out beforehand. If the players fail, they are too late and only see an overturned cart. No then-and-there decisions, just following the if-then storyline. When it says “new, unforeseen obstacles arise,” these aren’t really new, unforeseen, at least not by the GM.
Also, I cannot see how one session can last 2-4 hours. One mission is one session, right? Reading the missions from the supplement book, it seems like it’ll run an hour or two tops, unless a lot of non-game discussion is going on. So how can a game last two hours?
Structure of the game:
Reading p.12, how exactly does a game go? Based on what I read from the supplement, the GM just basically goes “right, you are doing this then you come upon this problem, you will need an Ob XX Science check to destroy the dam, etc. etc.” Isn’t that railroading in it’s purest form? Or what if the players decide on an altogether-new way of solving the problem, maybe talking to the beavers or using their mounts to break down the dam? Can the players even decide on a new (as in, something you’ve not thought of during the planning stage) solution during the GM’s turn?
Then again on page 66-67, the book tells the GM to describe the setting, then put the obstacle in front of them, then tell them what skill/ability they need to use to overcome the obstacle. Even though it says on page 67 that the GM can give the players options, it is still the GM who dictates what the options are. Isn’t this a prime example of “railroading the players?”
On page 70, where it says plans and suggestions are offered up to the GM, this doesn’t really affect the skill to be tested or the Ob of the test, does it? If I understand it correctly, all this does is testing to see if the player can get any more dice from helful mice, proper supplies, or the right approach to a situation – simply trying to better his odds of beating the obstacle. Is this correct?
Results of dice rolls:
On page 94, it says that everyone who helped out on a test will be affected by the result of that test. Does that mean that if one player makes a roll, and the other two players help him out, a failed roll will mean all three will get a condition (angry, hungry, tired, etc.)? What if the GM decides to do a twist rather than “succeed with a condition”?? Does this also apply to tests done during conflicts?
Little s – do they count only if you pass your test, or can you use them TO PASS the test? ie, if you need 3 successes and you roll 5D+1s, and get 2 successes, can you use the +1s to bring your successes to 3 and pass the test?
Book version - I realize this RPG has been released some time ago. My box-set book says second printing 2010. Has all the errata been incorporated into this second run? Is there still an errata list for this second print?
My son loves the comics, and I promised him last week that we were going to play this Saturday. Is it possible to game with one GM and one player? I don’t think I’m going to finish reading the book by Friday night, I am currently on the Resolution chapter - are there chapters I can skip? Is there a chapter I should pay particular attention to? Is there a newbie-friendly mission I can run? I know the book has a few but the Grain Peddler mission is too “canon” and the rest seem too complicated for me (as a new GM) and for my son (as a new player, and also as a lone mouse). Any aids/tips/hints appreciated.
One thing I like about this RPG is it is more “R” than other games, if nothing but for making players write out goals and beliefs and rewarding them for it, not just for having a high attack or a high crit chance percentage. I’ve played a few D&D games before and play some computer RPGs (Fallout 1, 2, 3, Dragon Age, etc.) and I must say this game focuses more on character and history and background than on how many attacks-per-turn you can do. Plus the “missions” you can do are very varied as well as being quite kiddie-friendly, so I know there are more role-playing opportunities than simply finding another orc/goblin/troll/bandit and bashing their heads in.
I do apologize for the number and variety of questions – I typed them out after reading a section of the book so that I don’t forget my queries. Please quote the part you are answering so that I know which section I am getting help on.
Thanks for reading!