Thursday, January 7, 2016

A Droids Gotta Make Them Credit Somehow

The second part of the Old School Crew's second Deadlands game is up for your listening pleasure, and of course hot droid on droid combat.  All I can say is that always bet on Robocop, always.

Originally I was quite hard on the new Force and Destiny RPG by Fantasy Flight Games.  I really liked the Star Wars setting and have played in a number of short term games based off the old D20 rules, including one with the infamous character Bon Bolo, he's like Han Solo's more unethical unscrupulous brother.  The dice are what really threw me for a loop and caused a cynical reaction that it was just a cash grab like the combo rpg/deck builder games from the mid 90's.  After playing in 5 or so sessions I have come about face and in fact think that the dice solve a lot of crunch problems in games and does two things mechanically that I really enjoy: moving the narrative of the story forward and quickening up combat.  Often combat in games can get overly complex with lots of die rolling and calculating while everyone looks around board and starts stacking dice or playing phone games.  There is damage to be dealt during combat but the GM has a lot of interpretive power on how the combat flows.  Death is also handled interestingly.  You do not just take you hit point loss to negative and then bleed out, you take an ever increasing amount of negative aspects to your character until you get lucky enough to roll high enough on a D100 to die, which is rather pulpy and fits the Star Wars setting well.

The dice also drive the narrative forward by adding problems or extra successes when rolling, so it is not a pass/fail dynamic as with other systems such as Call of Cthulhu.  You could succeed but roll a despair dice so that you actually were able to break into the computer network but you also tripped the silent alarm or you rolled a triumph so that you when you broke into the network the silent alarm got tripped buy you were able to change the source of the breech to another terminal on the other side of the station.

If you have not played the system yet I would highly recommend doing so.  I believe that if the product line becomes successful in the long term a lot more companies are going to be looking on how they can adopt their product to be more narrative focused, or even wholesale steal the idea of making their own dice.


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