[20:00] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Hi, I’m Alex White, and I’ve created a sci-fi tabletop RPG called Starguild: Space Opera Noir.
[20:01] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The genesis of it goes back a long, long way – starting as a homebrew campaign using Runequest rules back in the 1980’s if you can believe it.
[20:02] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I did put an early version of it up on the internet in the mid nineties, although you can only find that through the waybackmachine now 🙂
[20:02] <~Dan> 🙂
[20:02] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The version which I’m kickstarting at the moment is entirely rewritten for the 21st Century
[20:03] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I started when WotC introduced the OGL, which gave me a way of licensing mechanics officially. I also found some of the other OGL material which was being produced very compelling
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[20:03] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Particularly the ‘damage save’ mechanism which was introduced in Mutants and Masterminds, and then the True20 system.
[20:04] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Guest68!)
[20:04] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> One of the things which I had never been satisfied with in the OGL world was that everything revolved around the combat round, but there wasn’t any way as exciting to handle social conflict. And I could see a way around that.
[20:05] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So I’ve used my own variation of the ‘damage save’ mechanic to handle social conflict as well as melee conflict.
[20:05] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> For good measure I extended it to include vehicle combat, starship combat and various intellectual conflicts
[20:06] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Intellectual conflicts like manhunts, infiltration, interrogation, chases of various kinds and so on.
[20:07] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> All this helped me to fulfil the ‘noir’ aspect of ‘space opera noir’ – it provided mechanics which helped support the kind of betrayal rich adventures which I enjoy running and playing.
[20:07] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So – you create a character by choosing their Passion, Intellect and Physique, which reflect their emotional, intellectual and physical capabilities
[20:08] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> You then choose a talent, background and homeworld – which give a basic set of skills and advances and a whole bunch of story-based hooks which can be used during game to your advantage.
[20:09] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Finally, you set up your relationships to other PCs – what you owe and what you want, and decide upon your own Dark Secret. Then you’re ready to go!
[20:09] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> and with that, perhaps we are ready to go with the Q&A 🙂
[20:09] <~Dan> Thanks, Alex!
[20:09] <~Dan> The floor is open to questions!
[20:10] <~Dan> What is the premise of the setting?
[20:10] <+GenoFoxx> so can you do the whole tension of the poker game of Casino Royale?
[20:10] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Essentially the setting is in a globular cluster outside our galaxy and a long time ago.
[20:11] <~Dan> A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away? 🙂
[20:11] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> There is a history detailed about the rise and fall of civilisations, all of which provide little hooks which can be used for future adventures
[20:11] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (exactly Dan – Star Wars was very much one of my inspirations!)
[20:11] <~Dan> <– genius!
[20:11] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The current setting has five distinct political regimes, each with their own characteristics
[20:12] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The Holy Republic is secretive and unprincipled
[20:12] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The Keron Federation is Courtly, eccentric and (as one friend puts it) weaponised archaeologists
[20:12] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The Martell Union are militaristic and aggressive, possibly fascists
[20:13] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The Gateway Alliance are independently minded and resourceful
[20:13] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The league of stars is small and overshadowed by its neighbours.
[20:13] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Each has distinctive starships too.
[20:13] * ~Dan nods
[20:14] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I was inspired by Babylon 5 here – that there are lots of opportunites for conflict when there are powerful political entities with conflicting agendas
[20:15] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The other two key elements of the system premise are firstly that there are two kinds of world –
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[20:15] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Core worlds which are highly civilised and refined. No weapons other than the cut and thrust of social conflict
[20:16] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> and Frontier worlds which are much more wild-west, with ranchers, miners and townships
[20:16] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (a little bit firefly-like if you like).
[20:16] * ~Dan nods
[20:16] <~Dan> Cool.
[20:16] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The other key element is that it is human-ocentric. No aliens in funny costumes.
[20:17] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> There may be aliens, but they are all in the lovecraftian, inimical and possibly unknowable mould.
[20:17] <~Dan> I just got a mental image of gray aliens in clown suits.
[20:17] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (one of the adventures in the ruleset brushes against one of them).
[20:17] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (greys in clown suits – too star trek for me :))
[20:18] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (not to diss star trek, which I also love… but this is a different genre)
[20:18] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So – that is the premise.
[20:18] <~Dan> Cool!
[20:18] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> To GenoFoxx’s question:
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[20:19] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Social conflict normally involves more talking than you would see at the Casino Royale gaming table –
[20:19] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The main elements of social conflict are:
[20:20] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Captivate – grab someones attention so they are not focussing on other things (useful in Casino)
[20:20] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Persuade – give someone the logical arguments and sway them to your way of thinking (not so much for Casino)
[20:21] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (sorry, that should be Convince)
[20:21] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Dissemble – leave people thinking that you’ve answered their questions when you haven’t (I could see that being applicable)
[20:22] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Peacemaking – getting people to stand down from violence and give up their weapons (not for the casino)
[20:22] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Seduction – binding them to you with ties of love and dependence (why not?)
[20:22] <~Dan> (I dunno. You should see my buddy at the casino when he’s losing…)
[20:23] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Sow Distrust – to make people distrust each other (highly useful)
[20:23] * +Alex_StarguildRPG laughs
[20:23] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Swindle – which is for confidence tricks big and small (highly relevant for the casino)
[20:24] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> and Taunt – enraging people into irrational action (again, highly useful for the casino)
[20:24] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Do you know, after having gone through that I rather fancy having a high-stakes card game as one of the key scenes in my next convention adventure I run!
[20:25] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> It is worth mentioning…
[20:25] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> That the general rule of conflict is that you make a skill check (d20 plus bonuses) to accomplish something,
[20:26] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Then someone makes a conflict save (d20 plus bonuses) to avoid or reduce the consequences.
[20:26] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> By the way – I just realised that in my introduction I didn’t say where people can find the kickstarter (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1283988566/starguild-space-opera-noir-tabletop-rpg)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1283988566/starguild-space-opera-noir-tabletop-rpg
[20:26] <~Dan> Always a good idea. 🙂
[20:27] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> or my blog about the game (Link: http://starguildrpg.com)http://starguildrpg.com
[20:27] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (done)
[20:27] <~Dan> Can you give a general overview of the tech level of the setting?
[20:27] <~Dan> FTL travel? Personal energy weapons? etc.
[20:28] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The tech level of the setting is like star wars, but having stagnated somewhat.
[20:28] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Think episode 4 rather than episode 1.
[20:29] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> There have been breakthroughs in hyperdimensional generators – one of them allows FTL travel, another provides starship forcefields… but they are hugely risky.
[20:29] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> In the history of the game there have been two major catastrophes from research that went wrong. Still, people are bound to keep trying 🙂
[20:29] <~Dan> Well, certainly. 🙂
[20:30] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (One of the adventures in the stretch goal collection is related to such an endeavour. It is called “For Science!!”
[20:30] * ~Dan chuckles
[20:30] <~Dan> Is starship combat of the Star Wars cinematic variety, then? Dogfights in space?
[20:31] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Weapon technology ranges from slugs (chemical and gauss rounds), stunners, lasers, micromissile and disrupters.
[20:31] <~Dan> (And capital ships inexplicably traveling on an agreed-upon 2-dimensional plane? 😀 )
[20:31] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Starship combat is definitely in the cinematic mould, and we don’t worry about the plane of combat
[20:31] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> 🙂
[20:31] * ~Dan chuckles
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[20:32] <~Dan> (Howdy, WonderRat!)
[20:32] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> positioning is abstract – your range might be close, medium or long, and pilots will be working hard to keep your ship at the range which is best for you and worst for your opponents.
[20:33] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> In spaceship combat everyone on the bridge has something to do – captain, pilot, navigator, engineer, medic, gunners
[20:33] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I didn’t want anyone to get bored in space fights!
[20:33] <~Dan> Good plan.
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[20:33] <~Dan> (Howdy, CapRap!)
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[20:33] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Captains have an important role in inspiring other crew members, helping them to do their jobs better.
[20:34] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I like to think that I model leadership quite well through the leadership skill in the game.
[20:34] <~Dan> Heh. Captains are bards. 😀
[20:34] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> music to my ears, so to speak!
[20:34] * ~Dan chuckles
[20:34] <~Dan> You’ll do well here, Alex. 😉
[20:34] * +Alex_StarguildRPG smiles
[20:35] <~Dan> Now, do the Lovecraftian aliens have technology of their own? Or are they more of the xenomorph monster variety?
[20:36] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> One of the adventures in the book is a short one of the xenomorph style. Otherwise I assume the aliens have their own technology but it isn’t the kind of thing someone could just pick up and fire.
[20:37] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> One of the alien forces appears to use stone sculpted into particular shapes to make things happen. Who knows how that works? it’s impossible!
[20:37] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Another one of the alien forces, known only as ‘the enemy’, appears to be intangible and immaterial, so how does their technology work?
[20:38] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I do like using the Mi-Go in adventures (who doesn’t like brains in jars?) and any of the lovecraftian races could find a place.
[20:39] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (there is one guild, “The Watch”, whose members are entirely focussed on tracking down rumours of aliens and dealing with them. Great for x-files style campaigns.
[20:39] <~Dan> Are there open hostilities between the aliens and the humans?
[20:40] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> It is much more of a secret war. As far as most human societies are concerned there are no aliens.
[20:40] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> People who think there are aliens are considered to be conspiracy theory nut-jobs
[20:40] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> naturally.
[20:41] <~Dan> Huh. That’s an interesting approach, actually.
[20:41] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> In the ‘game history’ there was a time of war with ‘the enemy’, but since they work by possessing people it is harder to make that into a real ‘alien threat’, easy to justify as just people.
[20:42] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> There is one group of ‘good’ aliens who I refer to obliquely a couple of times in the rules as ‘the Watchers’.
[20:42] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Rumours about them, or that point to them.
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[20:42] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> In my campaign they are very much inspired by the Mihalli from Empire of the Petal Throne, but other gamemasters could take them in whatever direction they wanted.
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[20:43] <+GenoFoxx> so the enemy is like the ‘Mysterons’ from Captain Scarlet?
[20:43] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> A little –
[20:44] <+GenoFoxx> only no so big on announcing their intentions in a big booming voice over com channels
[20:44] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> essentially, at one time there was some hyperdimensional experimentation why let ‘something’ in from another place. Something inimical and which can possess people
[20:44] <~Dan> To what degree to you cover alien flora and fauna of the non-sapient variety?
[20:44] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> People possessed become tougher and stronger.
[20:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> and recognise each other, although nobody else except Guildmasters can.
[20:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> They then attempt to gain political and military power, and arrange for the possession of others.
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[20:45] <+GenoFoxx> is Psionics?
[20:46] <+GenoFoxx> there^
[20:47] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Regarding alien flora and fauna – there are rules for different classes of creature – trappers, aggressive herbivores, giant grazers, stalkers, pack hunters and so forth, with a range of customisations
[20:47] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So that alien flora and fauna can be described as desired, and there are mechanics to support it
[20:47] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Regarding psionics…
[20:47] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So, there are are no psionics as such. Officially.
[20:48] <~Dan> It’s all in your mind?
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[20:48] <~Dan> (Howdy, Maelthra_!)
[20:48] <+GenoFoxx> Mecha?
[20:48] <+WonderRat> (Hi, Folks!)
[20:48] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Guildmasters (think Jedi knights) have some limited psionic abilities – sensing things, healing themselves, improving their capabilities and using psionic devices include a lightsabre analog
[20:49] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> psionics research is outlawed by guildlaws, yet criminals and barons are always attempting secret research. The PsiCops guild is determined to stop that though. A future supplement will deal with this area in more detail.
[20:50] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> No Mecha at all. Starguild is a mecha-free zone 🙂
[20:50] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> War is conducted by using hovertanks and troops.
[20:50] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (there is a chapter of conflict specifically to support that, in case someone wants to run a mercernary campaign.
[20:52] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Just to reflect back on the alien question again for a minute – it ties in with the ‘noir’ themes of secrecy, hidden agendas and betrayals; aliens which people might not believe in, and have their own agendas
[20:52] * ~Dan nods
[20:53] <~Dan> I was wondering how you felt about the connection between aliens and the noir aspect.
[20:54] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> It is the kind of thing where someone could run a campaign which never touches on aliens at all, but just deals with intrigue in the federation and on various diplomatic stations.
[20:54] * ~Dan nods
[20:54] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Someone else might decide to make aliens a key theme of their campaign.
[20:54] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> My roadmap for the future is a short series of supplements to give more information about different campaign frames…
[20:55] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> A ‘Watch’ campaign that delves into alien threats more
[20:55] <~Dan> Cool.
[20:55] <+GenoFoxx> so are humans from Earth are there ‘brothers of man’ who still fight to survive in the heavens
[20:55] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> A ‘Psicops and Cybercops’ campaign that delves into illegal psionic and cybernetic research, criminal gangs and secret baronial research centres
[20:56] <~Dan> Oh, there are cybernetics?
[20:56] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Mercenary campaigns and High Society campaigns.
[20:56] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> GenoFoxx – the humans are indistinguishable from us, but Earth isn’t in the picture. This is a long time ago in a very different place 🙂
[20:57] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Dan – there is a short treatment of cybernetics in the appendix – enough to get people started if it is an area they are interested in it, more will be coming in the supplement dedicated to that area.
[20:58] <~Dan> Are there any transhumanist elements in the setting as well?
[20:58] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I don’t really have any transhumanist elements in the setting…
[20:59] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> with the possible exception of the ‘Guildmasters’ – people who work for a guild and how have certain special abilities awoken in them.
[20:59] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> They could be considered transhuman by some definition.
[20:59] * ~Dan nods
[20:59] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> But essentially this ties into my technological stagnation idea.
[20:59] <~Dan> Yeah, that makes sense.
[20:59] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So much technology has been risky and destroyed civilisations that novel research is frowned upon and dangerous
[21:00] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Besides which, the Core world citizens are just enjoying themselves with arts and poetry.
[21:00] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The Frontier world citizens are scratching out a living ranching and mining.
[21:00] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Who is going to be doing the research?
[21:01] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (well, mad scientists working for the system lords, obvs.) 🙂
[21:01] <~Dan> 🙂
[21:01] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Of course, lots of archaelogical research is being done, to reclaim technologies and secrets of the old empire
[21:02] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> They have many hidden research stations, and in those there are technological wonders (and horrors) ripe for discovery.
[21:02] <~Dan> How much more advanced was that period?
[21:02] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Not significantly more advanced – in Traveller terms perhaps half a tech level?
[21:03] * ~Dan nods
[21:03] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Their empire fell because of hyperdimensional research mistakes, but they may have had some discoveries which were safe and not yet discovered.
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[21:04] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> People might look for AI research, new weapon technologies, new dimensional stuff, new power sources, new psionic amplification stuff.
[21:05] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> incremental improvements, mostly – although gamemasters can choose how much they want to introduce themselves, of course!
[21:06] * ~Dan nodnods
[21:06] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> That’s an impressive double nod there. Did you use a stunt double?
[21:06] * ~Dan chuckles
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[21:07] <~Dan> How specific are the skills?
[21:08] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So, each ability score has got eight general skills associated with it.
[21:08] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Within each skill, there are a number of specialties.
[21:10] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So for someone untrained in Survival, they would make a Physique check in order to attempt something survival related in a hostile environment.
[21:10] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> If someone is trained in Survival, they get +5 on that check.
[21:10] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> If someone has a specialty in a particular aspect (like Survival(Jungle) ) then they would get an additional +5 in that specific environment.
[21:11] <~Dan> So both skills and specialties lack levels of ability?
[21:11] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> It is possible to have a specialty without being trained in the skill. Natives of the desert planet Zared all have Survival(Desert) as a specialty – so they all get +5 to survival checks in desert environments, but are no better than anyone else in other environments
[21:12] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> That’s right Dan – it isn’t granular below the level of ‘trained’ and ‘specialty’.
[21:13] <~Dan> What was your thinking on that approach?
[21:13] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> It is cheaper to attain a specialty than it is to get trained in a skill (as an ‘advance’ you can get trained in one skill or you can get two skill specialties)
[21:14] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I did this because I didn’t like the ‘point bitching’ of D&D 3e, where you had to separate out points between various skills and it rewarded super-specialising in a few things.
[21:14] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> What I wanted was something which was simple to set up as players (and for NPCs) but which would have broad flexibility.
[21:15] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Characters can specialise to a certain extent in something they are interested in, but they tend to become more broadly capabile rather than hyper-specialised.
[21:15] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> That seemed to fit better with a sci-fi game where there are so many different avenues which adventures could take.
[21:16] <~Dan> I can see that.
[21:16] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Plus made for easier maths while playing
[21:16] * ~Dan nods
[21:17] <~Dan> Now, a quick note: I may ask questions that you’ve answered pre-Q&A for the sake of our audience and readers.
[21:17] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Style has specialities like Dress-sense, Oratory and Perform, by the way.
[21:18] <~Dan> To whit: Given the Physique stat, are you able to distinguish strength from dexterity?
[21:18] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Sabotage has things like open lock, bypass security, disarm bomb and set iED.
[21:18] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (no worries about pre-Q&A questions)
[21:20] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Nope, other than in descriptive terms. Physique is generalised physical awareness and control. One character might define high physique as being physically strong and imposing, another might describe it as being swift and agile. Just the one Physique covers that.
[21:20] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Up until a few years ago I had the standard D&D six stats, but having three physical stats, two intellectual stats and one emotional stat didn’t meet my design goals – I wanted all three areas to be equal.
[21:20] <~Dan> That being the case, how do you prevent huge, clumsy creatures from being master combatants — the “Ninjasaurus Effect”?
[21:21] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So I broke from tradition (gasps!) and rolled Str, Dex and Con into one stat.
[21:21] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Good question!
[21:21] <~Dan> Thank you!
[21:21] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The answer is that size is considered separately.
[21:21] <~Dan> How does that work?
[21:22] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> A Large creature (like a bear) gets -5 on its melee attacks, but does +5 on its damage TN (threat number)
[21:22] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> A Huge creature like an elephant gets -10 on its melee attacks, but does +10 on its TN.
[21:22] <~Dan> Ah! Excellent.
[21:22] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> A bear might be Large with Physique +3, a Cow might be Large with physique -2.
[21:23] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> i.e. bears are faster and stronger than cows – but a cow could still mess you up if it gets a trample in!
[21:23] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The animal size scale tops out at -20 to hit, +20 to TN.
[21:24] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (this applies if someone tries to ram you with a car or truck too, BTW)
[21:24] <~Dan> And with weapons of various scales, I presume?
[21:25] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Exactly.
[21:25] * ~Dan nods
[21:25] <~Dan> Cool.
[21:25] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Typically military field weapons or MBT turrets have the same base damage as a laser or gauss pistol but at +20 to TN. Starship weapons are about +40 to TN.
[21:26] <~Dan> MBT?
[21:26] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So if you want to go elephantoid hunting with tanks, that is doable.
[21:26] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> MBT = Main Battle Tank
[21:26] <~Dan> Ah.
[21:27] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Mounted machine guns are considered ‘large’ versions of hand-held machine guns and so forth.
[21:27] <~Dan> Right, gotcha.
[21:28] <~Dan> I’d like to get your opinion on social conflict mechanics.
[21:28] <~Dan> Specifically, the degree to which they determine PC reactions.
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[21:29] <~Dan> (Howdy, Snoof!)
[21:29] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So this is something which I address in the introduction, and I have a little section under each of the social conflict types to address what it means for PCs
[21:29] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Fundamentally, I don’t think that being affected by social conflict de-protagonises your character.
[21:30] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I think that it adds some additional interesting constraints which you get to play with while role-playing the character.
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[21:31] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Say someone forces you to distrust another character – they have made their attack successfully and you’ve really blown your social save.
[21:31] * ~Dan nods
[21:31] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> You then get to think of the other person in the worst possible light. Perhaps bring up things from previous adventures which you can claim are signs of his bad behaviour
[21:31] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Distrust his advice.
[21:32] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I don’t know whether you’ve done many ‘team building exercises’ at work – but they often come with particular constraints which force creative solutions.
[21:32] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I see the possibility of being affected by social conflict in the same way.
[21:32] <~Dan> I haven’t, but I see your point.
[21:33] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> If, for instance, your character has been successfully seduced by someone, then they want to get intimate with them and will take risks to do so if you failed your save badly enough.
[21:34] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> This happened in a recent con game I ran.
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[21:34] <~Dan> (Howdy, Lin_Chong!)
[21:34] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> One of the players was secretly in love with another, and so attempted to seduce them, and was successful.
[21:34] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The other player felt conflicted – intellectually she didn’t like the captain but couldn’t deny her attraction to him.
[21:35] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> She enjoyed role-playing the internal conflict which she was feeling.
[21:35] <~Dan> Have you ever gotten any pushback on the issue?
Session Close (#rpgnet): Fri Feb 12 21:39:57 2016 -0600
Session Start (Dan:#rpgnet): Fri Feb 12 21:40:24 2016 -0600
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[21:40] *** Topic on #rpgnet is: #rpgnet welcomes Alex White (Starguild) 02/12/2016 8:00 p.m. CDT! || Q&A schedule: (Link: http://tinyurl.com/rpgnetschedule)http://tinyurl.com/rpgnetschedule || Q&A logs: (Link: https://gmshoe.wordpress.com/)https://gmshoe.wordpress.com/
[21:40] *** Topic set by Dan (14 hours ago at 7:17 AM)
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[21:40] <~Dan> There we go.
[21:40] <~Dan> Okay, sorry. If you answered my “pushback” question, I didn’t see it.
[21:41] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Not sure – what was you ‘pushback’ question?
[21:41] <~Dan> [21:35] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> She enjoyed role-playing the internal conflict which she was feeling.[21:35] <~Dan> Have you ever gotten any pushback on the issue?
[21:41] <~Dan> (Did that show up?)
[21:42] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> No, that didn’t show up.
[21:42] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Actually, I haven’t.
[21:42] <~Dan> Basically, I was just wondering if you’d ever had anyone object to having a roll of the dice determine how they had to roleplay.
[21:42] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I’ve run the system numerous times at conventions, sometimes with complete strangers, and I’ve not had anyone object to it at all.
[21:43] <~Dan> Huh. Well, that’s good.
[21:43] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Perhaps because I bill the game as including social conflict there is a degree of expectation.
[21:43] <~Dan> Right.
[21:43] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> And people do have a save to attempt to avoid it –
[21:43] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> and Conviction to spend to attempt to just edge over a save which they nearly missed.
[21:44] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (they all love the conviction mechanic, by the way)
[21:44] <~Dan> What is Conviction in this context?
[21:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I just wrote an update about it on the kickstarter site today
[21:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1283988566/starguild-space-opera-noir-tabletop-rpg/posts/1490649)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1283988566/starguild-space-opera-noir-tabletop-rpg/posts/1490649
[21:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> In short – it is a renewable resource you can use to help yourself out.
[21:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Spend it it add +1d6 to a roll you have just made
[21:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Spend it to get an extra action in a combat round
[21:45] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Spend it to be ‘nearly dead’ instead of ‘dead’ 🙂
[21:46] <~Dan> Ah, so it’s a hero point mechanic of sorts.
[21:46] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Yes, exactly.
[21:46] <~Dan> How is Conviction earned?
[21:46] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> You start an adventure with an amount equal to your level (there are maximum 10 levels in the game)
[21:46] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> You can regain it by acting in line with your background, or talking about your background.
[21:47] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Remember up at the top I said that you choose your talent, profession and homeworld?
[21:47] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Act in line with your talent (being caustic, being brainy, demonstrating your strength or addiction) recovers conviction.
[21:47] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Telling stories about your life as a soldier, a rancher, a politician, recovers conviction.
[21:48] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Telling stories about your homeworld, what it was like, your experiences there, recovers conviction.
[21:48] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> So ideally it is spent and recovered freely during and adventure – not hoarded.
[21:49] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> And the mechanism for recoving it is tied into your background, and helps build the shared story of the game.
[21:49] <~Dan> Very nice.
[21:49] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I encourage players to make up whatever details they like about their homeworld, and that becomes part of the ‘truth’ about that world for my campaign
[21:49] <~Dan> Cool. 🙂
[21:50] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Some games give hero points for being awesome. I can never be as awesome as other people, so that didn’t work for me 😦
[21:50] * ~Dan chuckles
[21:50] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> But anyone can make up a little story about their background or homeworld.
[21:51] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> We love role-playing, and putting in some colour related to our ‘talent’ is pretty easy in most cases.
[21:51] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> People can end up with ‘trademark’ actions
[21:51] <~Dan> In what remains of “regular time”, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up?
[21:51] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> And I like the way that we increase our confidence in our ability by reminding ourselves of who we are.
[21:52] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I think we have covered a surprising amount in the time we have had.
[21:52] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> There are five adventures in the back of the book, each of which showcases different elements of the rules; each of which I’ve run as convention adventures successfully on several occasions.
[21:53] <~Dan> That’s handy!
[21:53] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> If we reach the stretch goal for the kickstarter (less than £200 off it at the moment) then everyone who has backed at the £20 level or higher will get an additional book of six adventures which I’ve run at conventions.
[21:54] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> And characters for one-off play, or some guidance about including them in a campaign.
[21:54] <~Dan> Very nice.
[21:55] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> The kickstarter is primarily to raise money for additional art – and I’m fully funded for that, so barring some kind of collapse of Kickstarter I’m going to be getting the final art commissioned and get the game out to backers by July at the latest.
[21:56] <~Dan> Great!
[21:56] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I guess I’d just like to say thanks for this opportunity to chat about my game
[21:56] <~Dan> Congratulations are in order, then.
[21:56] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> Really appreciate the opportunity to share my excitement about it.
[21:56] <~Dan> You’re very welcome. I hope you’ll hang out with us in the future!
[21:56] <+Alex_StarguildRPG> I will do, I’ll certainly pop in now and again
[21:57] <~Dan> Thanks as well for staying up so late with us.
[21:57] <~Dan> If you’ll give me just a minute longer, I’ll get the log posted and get you the link