[20:31] <+PatrickL> Hello, My name is Patrick I am the founder of, and lead developer at Sproutli Games
[20:32] <+PatrickL> We recently Just launched out latest game, Planet Crashers: Galactic Boogaloo Edition, on Kickstarter. I say latest, but Ironically Planet Crashers was actually the first game I had ever released.
[20:34] <+PatrickL> 3 years ago I challenged myself to a 48 hour marathon, in which i was to design, write and release a whole RPG in a 48 hour period. After a sleepless weekend and begging one of my artist friends to draw me up a cover art. Planet Crashers was released to positive reception.
[20:35] <+PatrickL> Now that I have had such a long period of playing the game with friends, and at conventions, I have improved the game to the point that I feel it is deserving of a second edition.
[20:36] <+PatrickL> (done)
[20:36] <~Dan> Thanks, PatrickL! The floor is open to questions!
[20:36] <~Dan> Can you tell us what the game is about?
[20:37] <+PatrickL> The game itself is a comedic gambling based RPG, which has players staring as the cast of a B-Rate science fiction television show.
[20:38] <~Dan> Is there a built-in setting?
[20:39] <+PatrickL> what really sets the game apart is that when making a character you choose a Trope/Stereotype that you want to play by, because the more you ham-it-up and play to your Trope, the better your character will do.
[20:41] <~Dan> How does that work?
[20:41] <+PatrickL> Yes there is a built, in setting. Heavily drawn from the worlds depicted in ‘Space Dandy’ and ‘Cowboy Bebop’. However, as with any RPG, GMs are always welcome to develop their own settings.
[20:44] <+PatrickL> With Planet Crashers being centered around 1-shot ‘Episodes’ opposed to a more standard campaign, I really tried to streamline the second edition’s character sheets. Allowing players to hop right into the game. This has resulted in each Trope getting it’s own unique character sheet that players can quickly fill out.
[20:44] <~Dan> Can you link us to the character sheet?
[20:44] <+PatrickL> Similar to the way that Dungeon World or Apocalypse World’s character sheets are set up.
[20:45] <+PatrickL> Here is a link to the work in progress character sheets:
[20:45] <+PatrickL> (Link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/1wcgxy3261shyhk/AN2017%20-%20Character%20Sheet%20%282%29.pdf?dl=0)https://www.dropbox.com/s/1wcgxy3261shyhk/AN2017%20-%20Character%20Sheet%20%282%29.pdf?dl=0
[20:46] <~Dan> Hmm… Could we use the Meat Shield as our example for learning about the system?
[20:48] <+PatrickL> I generally prefer to use the Made Scientist, The meat shield lends itself to a group example instead of a single player’s action. Making the description more complex
[20:48] <~Dan> Ah, I see… Let me scroll down, then…
[20:48] <+PatrickL> If you are checking on the character sheet document, The Mad Scientist is page 8
[20:49] <~Dan> Okay, I’m there. So what’s the basic mechanic?
[20:50] <+PatrickL> The game is set up as as a galactic bounty hunt by default. The players control a ragtag band of mercenaries while the Game Master, referred to as the Director in this game, takes on the role of that episode’s bounty target.
[20:51] <+PatrickL> This frames the game as a more Players vs. Director
[20:52] <+PatrickL> When organizing the game, players pick their Tropes [the Director also picks a Trope, to be this episode’s Villain] and each player including the Director are dealt a hand of playing cards, and given a few Poker Chips
[20:54] <+PatrickL> The poker chips given to each player represent their character’s life and are gambled away when overcoming obstacles
[20:55] <+PatrickL> If the players can force the Director to lose all their tokens, the players bring down the outlaw, collect the bounty and get to write their own ending to the episode.
[20:56] <~Dan> Interesting…
[20:56] <~Dan> How does the gambling aspect work?
[20:57] <+PatrickL> As for the mechanics, the Director tries to write an engaging episode, so they will throw narrative obstacles as the players, and set a base wager (usually 1, 2 or 3 Poker Chips)
[20:58] <+PatrickL> The players must then decide among themselves, who will be the Leading Actor for this scene (who the camera is focused on if you will0
[20:58] * ~Dan nods…
[21:00] <+PatrickL> the Leading Actor meets the Director’s wager using their own poker chips. They then can invoke their character’s Powers [Seen at the bottom of the Trope Sheet] narrating how they help their character with the obstacle.
[21:02] <+PatrickL> Ex.The ships engine is fried, so the Mad Scientist activates his ‘Cyborg With One Too Many Enhancements’ power, saying that he connects his robotic arm right into the engine’s control panel to get a better view of the problem.
[21:04] <~Dan> (Howdy, ChrisGrey! Meet PatrickL, tonight’s Q&A guest!)
[21:04] <+PatrickL> When doing this, he shades in a segment of the Power Star paired to the ‘Cyborg With One Too Many Enhancements’ Power, consuming one of his limited uses of the Power
[21:04] <~Dan> Why is one already shaded in?
[21:05] <+ChrisGrey> Hey PatrickL and Dan
[21:05] <~Dan> (Chris here is a future Q&A guest of ours. You guys feel free to swap KS links and such. 🙂 )
[21:05] <+PatrickL> Activating this Power however, forces the Director to wager two additional Poker chips. Raising the Stakes for the Director (2 Poker Chips for the Mad Scientist vs 4 Poker Chips for the Director)
[21:06] <+PatrickL> In addition to Powers, players can also activate their Trope to gain benefits
[21:07] <+PatrickL> The Mad Scientist Trope is to force the director to Wager 2 additional Poker Chips when they justify their action with non-nonsensical technical jargon (Technobabble)
[21:10] <~Dan> When it says “one from each category”, does it mean one from each square?
[21:10] <+PatrickL> so using the previous ‘fried engine example’ our cyborg scientist could say “I plug my robotic arm into the engine’s mainframe, and begin to tamper with the machines quantum drive. Hoping to reduce the polarity on the quarks and free up the mag-drive from and hiccups”
[21:11] <+PatrickL> ^that burst of technical jargon activates the Mad Scientist Trope, Forcing the Director to add two more tokens to the Wager. (2 vs 6) now
[21:11] <+ChrisGrey> Sounds like it could be a good drinking game too….seems fun 😉
[21:11] <+PatrickL> Dan, I will get into the reason why the first tip is shaded in shortly gotta explain Encore before that
[21:12] * ~Dan nods
[21:12] <~Dan> (Howdy, WineDarkSea!)
[21:12] <+PatrickL> As for “one from each category” yes that refers to the boxes
[21:12] <+PatrickL> the first box is species, then the other three are general powers
[21:14] <&Silverlion> Surprised meat shield has no lizard-man option
[21:15] <+PatrickL> alright once both the Leading Actor and the Director are ready to go, it is time to conclude the gamble. This is done by both the Leading Actor and the Director taking one card from their hand and revealing it simultaneously. Who ever reveals the higher card keeps their gambled tokens, and the loser’s tokens are taken out of the game.
[21:15] <+PatrickL> Silverlion, any reason you say that? these are still works in progress, if there is a good reference I am missing let me know I will add it in.
[21:17] <&Silverlion> Well lots of big lizard guys in fiction, Gorn in Star Trek (although bad guys), Drakh (despite being an Enemy, not evil, just opposing humans in Enemy Mine) lots of written fiction have them, mil sci loves lizard men, like Tanya Huff’s series is all about recruiting some.
[21:18] <+ChrisGrey> YES!!!!! An Enemy Mine reference…..nice Silverlion
[21:18] <+PatrickL> Thanks! I will have to check it out and possibly toss it in
[21:18] <&Silverlion> In B5 there are the Narn, and the Drazi
[21:20] <~Dan> What is combat like?
[21:20] <&Silverlion> ChrisGrey: Thank you 😀
[21:20] <+PatrickL> One thing I would like to point out about the games setup, is that the Director’s pokerchips are split into two stacks, dividing the game into two phases. The first phase, called The Hunt, has the Game master without a trope sheet, making them unable to use Powers or a Trope. This phase is all about tracking down and getting to the Villain.
[21:21] <+Geno> (g’night)
[21:22] <+PatrickL> once this first stack is gone, the Director pulls out their second stack and finally get’s their own Trope Sheet. This phase starts when the players come face to face with the episode’s villain and the climax begins.
[21:23] <+ChrisGrey> This sounds like an RPG my girlfriend would actually play
[21:24] <+PatrickL> Combat works just like any other gamble. It just depends how you narrate it. Though combat most often takes place during the second, climax, phase. where the leading actor and the Director have a back and forth of using their character’s Trope and Powers, stacking up Poker chips before each card reveal.
[21:25] <+PatrickL> While each gamble is really between the Leading Actor and the Director, The other players aren’t left out. They take on the role of an Active Audience and have a number of things they do to aid or alter the gamble
[21:26] <+PatrickL> Some Trope’s like the Meat Shield, and the Bleeding Heart excel at being an active audience member
[21:27] <+PatrickL> these players can also invoke their Character Powers to aid the Leading actor. This is done by wagering poker chips at a 1 to 1 ratio against the Director apposed to shading in segments on the Power Star
[21:27] <+PatrickL> Active Audience members can discard ‘powerful’ Trump cards from their hand in order to activate special suit powers and change up the gamble.
[21:28] <+PatrickL> and most importantly, Active Audience members can bet Encore on the Leading actor.
[21:30] <+PatrickL> The way encore works is that each player starts with 1 Encore Token at the start of the game. If the Leading Actor does something, cool, funny, or just something you enjoy you can reward them by adding your Encore Token on to their gamble.
[21:31] <+PatrickL> The act of receiving this reward Levels Up the leading actor allowing them to unlock another segment of a Power Star, giving them an additional use of the power of their choice. (Leveling up is denoted by shading in the tip of the star)
[21:32] <+PatrickL> Dan to answer your earlier question, all stars start at level 1 allowing the player to use them once before needing to gain Encore to use it again. That is why the top tip is dark.
[21:34] <+PatrickL> With Encore being added on to the Gamble, the leading actor has to win the gamble in order to keep the Encore. If the player loses the Encore goes to the Director. (the leading actor still get’s their level up regardless of whether they win or lose the gamble)
[21:35] <~Dan> How much opportunity is there for roleplaying with this mechanic?
[21:36] <+PatrickL> The Director having Encore is bad news bears for the players. As they can Encore themselves to activate Director only Powers. The more Encore the Director can wager at the same time the more devastating the affect.
[21:40] <+PatrickL> While the game has a strong, competitive root in mechanics. There is still plenty of room for roleplaying. As players are encouraged to get into their chosen cliche though the themed abilities and Trope Power, which lends itself very well to the one shot structure of Planet Crashers.
[21:40] <+PatrickL> One look at a filled out character sheet and you know exactly who your character is, and what they are about. Allowing you to quickly dive in and get into their personality
[21:42] <+PatrickL> because characters are so identifiable I have found that even the less confident role players can easily hop into character.
[21:43] <+PatrickL> It often ends up that each gamble becomes it’s own narrative conversation, allowing players room to RP their character.
[21:46] <~Dan> And you said the game is designed around one-session adventures?
[21:46] <+ChrisGrey> Did you ever play the board game Order of the Schtick? That mechanic of being involved in the final battle even though you’re not fighting reminds me of that
[21:48] <+PatrickL> ChrisGrey I have not played the Order of the Stick board game, but I am familiar with the comics. Will have to check it out :0
[21:48] <+PatrickL> ** 🙂
[21:49] <+PatrickL> yes, as with the original Planet Crashers, the new version also focuses on single session adventures. or Episodes as I like to call them
[21:50] <+ChrisGrey> I really like the quick session premise….I’ve ran across a number of people in my life that have told me they never got into RPGs because they didn’t want to have to be so involved
[21:50] * ~Dan nods
[21:50] <+PatrickL> Players are welcome to player multiple sessions with the same characters, in a Monster-of-the-Week formula. But each session is to be self contained and independent.
[21:51] <~Dan> Do you allow for character growth?
[21:51] <+ChrisGrey> Like beyond their cliche, Dan?
[21:51] <+PatrickL> I did in the original one, jury is still out on how it will be in Galactic Boogaloo
[21:51] <~Dan> Well, or just increased abilities.
[21:52] <+ChrisGrey> Ah
[21:52] <+ChrisGrey> That has a nice ring to it too, and just plain fun to say
[21:53] <+PatrickL> I do have a ‘Points’ System in place to track who the ‘Fan Favourite’ of the Episode was. That could easily be converted over to experience points.
[21:53] <+ChrisGrey> Or maybe as simple as a bonus to your next start
[21:54] <+ChrisGrey> Like an extra Encore chip maybe
[21:55] <+PatrickL> most likely I would allow for 2 or more abilities from the same category. and allowing power stars to start a session at a higher level
[21:55] <+ChrisGrey> So does this game have its own cards and chips?
[21:56] <+PatrickL> I looked into it, for a small print run like we are looking at getting custom poker chips or cards aren’t feasible.
[21:57] <+PatrickL> but as a kickstarter exclusive reward we are offering Oak poker chip sets with the Planet Crashers logo laser etched into them
[21:57] <+ChrisGrey> So it relies on people having a deck of cards and chips then?
[21:57] <+PatrickL> the set contains, chips, cards and encore tokens. everything you need to play
[21:58] <+PatrickL> yes
[21:58] <+ChrisGrey> Right on, that’s a cool reward idea
[22:00] <~Dan> Do you have any expansions planned?
[22:01] <+PatrickL> hahahah do I ever
[22:01] <+PatrickL> we are currently $540 away from reaching the first expansion on the kickstarter.
[22:02] <~Dan> Which is what?
[22:02] <+ChrisGrey> That’s awesome
[22:04] <+PatrickL> The first expansion is themed after Spaghetti Western movies. It is based on a radio quiet planet which researchers have place a state of the art radio telescope upon. This telescope is so sensitive that even the slightest communication or electrical signal can compromise it’s data. Making it the perfect place for Outlaws to hide.
[22:04] <+PatrickL> the whole planet feels like an old western movie. With Trope sheets and mechanics altered to match
[22:05] <+PatrickL> Rather than the Power Star, sheets have revolver chambers at the bottom. Which change how encore is used and how powers level up
[22:06] <+PatrickL> another fun narrative idea, is there is a standoff to determine the Leading Actor for each obstacle. Where players make a gun with their hands and point at who they want the leading actor to be.
[22:06] <+ChrisGrey> That sounds cool….it could have a character modeled after one in Westworld lol
[22:07] <+PatrickL> wow chrisgrey you are just stacking up things that I need to check out
[22:08] <+PatrickL> After the Cowboys Expansion, we are looking into Space Pirates and of course you can’t have a game about cliches without Space Ninjas
[22:08] <+PatrickL> each with their own tropes and specialized mechanics
[22:09] <+ChrisGrey> Nice…ninjas are awesome
[22:09] <+PatrickL> With pirates playing more like a game of cheat, where you say to your card value rather than revealing it. and the other director can call you out on it.
[22:10] <+PatrickL> and Ninja’s focusing more on each player having a secret mission or even being a traitor.
[22:10] <+ChrisGrey> Like pirate’s dice….I like it
[22:10] <+PatrickL> ChrisGrey how do I not know any of your references!
[22:11] <+ChrisGrey> lol
[22:11] <+ChrisGrey> Have you thought about any time traveling expansions
[22:12] <+PatrickL> interesting idea, not one i had considered before
[22:14] <+ChrisGrey> It opens the door to a lot of different kinds of settings
[22:15] <+PatrickL> fair, but when you are dealing with sci-fi, how does a jungle planet with dinosaurs differ from going back in time?
[22:16] <+ChrisGrey> The characters are still sci-fi though as they’re doing the traveling…just a thought
[22:17] <+PatrickL> fair, I will keep it in mind 🙂
[22:19] <+ChrisGrey> I have to get going….good luck with your KS….I might be able to drop a few bucks your way next week…have a good night
[22:19] <~Dan> Take care, ChrisGrey!
[22:19] <~Dan> In the time remaining, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up PatrickL?
[22:20] <+PatrickL> Night! thanks for the chat!
[22:21] <+PatrickL> honestly, I think I covered the basics and have nothing more I would like to add. But I am happy to answer any questions still
[22:22] <~Dan> Sounds good! I’ll go ahead and log the “official” chat, but you’re more than welcome to hang out with us as long as you like. 🙂
[22:23] <~Dan> Usual reminder to the folks: My tip jar is at (Link: https://gmshoe.wordpress.com/the-gmshoes-tip-jar/)https://gmshoe.wordpress.com/the-gmshoes-tip-jar/ . 🙂
[22:23] <~Dan> Thanks very much for joining us, PatrickL!
[22:23] <+PatrickL> and If you haven’t check out already most of what I have said is on the games kickstarter page:
[22:23] <+PatrickL> (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/376200266/planet-crashers-galactic-boogaloo-edition)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/376200266/planet-crashers-galactic-boogaloo-edition