Can anyone provide insight into why everyone at the table can’t get this reward? I understand the spirit of this rule - it’s far better for the game to demand challenging roleplaying than to sit around high fiving each other for being awesome, but what if your entire group really rises to the occasion?
I ask because that’s exactly what happened tonight. When voting for this reward, we had one unanimous nomination and then two that were locked in a tie. Everyone had brought some new shades of their character to their table and no one could decide who of the two were more deserving.
As GM, I opted to hand out the reward to everyone with the understanding that the bar has been set and this will never happen again. It felt like the right ruling, especially now that they know I’m expecting more from them from our next session (number 13, by the way).
If you give it to everyone then there’s no real discussion. As soon as you leave someone out, there MUST be a conversation about who did the best job and then, at best, a decision about the one player who goes without. It’s called game design.
MVP and Teamworker are specifically limited to one character each, and both rewards can’t go to the same character. Embodiment allows it to be awarded to multiple people but specifies that it can’t go to everyone.
Everyone did distinguish themselves. More importantly, we saw each character distinguish themselves in new ways. The only reason why they wouldn’t all receive the reward is because the rules say not to.
No, there absolutely was a real discussion. When we voted, there was a tie. The problem was that based on both there was no easy way to say who was more deserving because everybody brought their best this session.
I also don’t think it’s particularly useful to say, “It’s called game design.” I totally get the spirit of the rule (and if you think I don’t - address my analysis of it). My question is why it couldn’t go to everyone in the situation I described. Maybe a better question is: how do you arbitrate when there is a tie?
There is a performance element to the embodiment award, but really it’s about who really nailed their character in play with the decisions they made? Who gave us new insight into their character?
And it’s a bar that is intended to rise. If the group is having difficulty deciding between two players, that’s a sign that you’ve found a new baseline and neither should get it. Going forward, anyone must exceed that baseline to earn the Embodiment award.
So now I get it. I think that’s exactly what happened. 12 sessions in, we raised the bar.
I think now that we’re really getting the rules down together we’re free to do a lot more. We’ve opened up. Also, we’re beginning to gel a lot more as a group. We’re achieving synergy between strategic, personal, and team oriented decisions. I think when those elements start to come together, you get what happened last night. Not to mention that the characters are growing as well. I mean, when purifying water during camp is no longer a big deal because we’re rolling 6 dice base, that makes a huge difference. I mean, we can’t ignore those necessities so we have to keep earning checks and we have to track those things appropriately, etc, but I think we’re opening up to bigger challenges, and therefore we’re being forced to confront what we’re really about.
With that said, yeah, the discussion has changed. Let’s keep bringing our best to the table and award the person who really goes above and beyond from here.
Thanks for clarification, Thor. When our group is making nominations for these rewards, we make sure to include the specific moments and rolls driving recognition for all rewards (MVP, Teamworker, and Embodiment). The difficulty of this decision was that everyone make very character-driven decisions, roleplayed, and brought out new sides of their character this session. We definitely felt that the floor of expectations had risen and that the following sessions need to get more intense.
to build on Jared’s comment, the game forces you to decide because the reward is more about (as much about?) that discussion then it is about the answer you come to. Since you have to resolve ties, the way your group does that will say a lot about how you approach the game, especially when the game presents difficult, no win situations. The game doesn’t let you off the hook because it’s not a game that’s interested in letting people off the hook.