[19:31] <+RobinDLaws> Hey everybody. This is writer and game designer Robin D. Laws. You may know me from such roleplaying games as Hillfolk, Feng Shui, The Esoterrorists, and Ashen Stars.
[19:31] <+RobinDLaws> I am the author of eight novels plus the short story collection New Tales of the Yellow Sign, and have edited five original short fiction anthologies. Hear my soothing voice on the weekly podcast Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff.
[19:31] <+RobinDLaws> I’m here tonight to type at you about The Yellow King Roleplaying Game, now Kickstarting. This innovative new GUMSHOE core game takes you on a brain-bending spiral through multiple selves and timelines.
[19:31] <+RobinDLaws> Inspired by Robert W. Chambers’ influential cycle of short stories, YKRPG pits the characters against the reality-altering horror of The King in Yellow. This suppressed play, once read, invites madness. Or a visit from its titular character, an alien ruler intent on invading and remolding our world into a colony of their planet, Carcosa.
[19:31] <+RobinDLaws> Four books, served up together in a beautiful slipcase, confront your players with an epic journey into reality horror. [Done]
[19:32] <~Dan> Thanks, RobinDLaws!
[19:32] <~Dan> The floor is open to questions!
[19:32] <~Dan> Can you tell us about the premises of the four books?
[19:33] <+RobinDLaws> In Paris, you play American art students at large in Paris in 1895. Your bohemian ways soon bring you into contact with the mysterious forces who have brought into the world a terrible play: The King in Yellow.
[19:34] <+RobinDLaws> In The Wars, you play French soldiers in the 1947 Continental War as it rages across Europe. Ducking bizarre war machines like the stalkers and dragonflies, you fulfill your mission for the Loyalist alliance—while solving occult mysteries on the side.
[19:35] <+RobinDLaws> Aftermath jumps ahead to the present day—but one in an alternate reality where you have just helped in toppling the nearly century-old Castaigne regime, whose Emperors have ruled America with the aid of the pallid-faced king.
[19:36] <+RobinDLaws> Then finally in This is Normal Now you play the same people in a world (apparently) like our own, as the influence of Carcosa spreads into apps, social media, and the glittering nightlife of the downtown scene.
[19:37] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[19:37] <~Dan> When you say “play the same people”, how’s that work?
[19:37] <~Dan> (Howdy, SirGene!)
[19:39] <+RobinDLaws> Let’s say you play Sam Bishop, heroic reporter and hero of the revolution in Aftermath. In This is Normal now you play his counterpart in an alternate reality—technical writer Sam Bishop.
[19:39] <+xyphoid> So is this a game or an adventure or both?
[19:39] <+xyphoid> or something more like Orpheus where it’s focused campaign and game together?
[19:39] <~Dan> (Howdy, Bart_ThievesCant, LucusPalosaari!)
[19:39] <+Bart_ThievesCant> o//
[19:39] <+RobinDLaws> This is a new core game. Each of the four books includes an intro adventure.
[19:39] <+Guest17> What are the notable differences between Chambers’ & the YKRPG approach to horrible incomprehensible aliens and the more familiar Lovecraftian (or at least Call of Cthulhu style) horrible incomprehensible aliens?
[19:40] <~Dan> (Guest17: Please set your name with the /nick command; e.g., /nick Dan 🙂 )
[19:40] <~Dan> (Thanks, DrewC!)
[19:40] <+RobinDLaws> Chambers’ aliens are less incomprehensible. The King in Yellow may claim to be a living god but he cares about us enough to want to invade our world and warp it to our will.
[19:41] <+LucusPalosaari> So are you sticking more to the original Chambers version? Or are you use Hastur in a larger context?
[19:41] <+RobinDLaws> Lovecraft’s entities destroy us not because they care but because we believe we’re significant in a vast howling cosmos and lose our minds when, just by existing, they show us we don’t.
[19:42] <+RobinDLaws> YKRPG is about reality horror rather than cosmic horror. It’s about an idea, an artistic expression, a symbol that can get inside your mind and rewrite it.
[19:42] <+Will> (eep, running late)
[19:42] <~Dan> (Howdy, Will!)
[19:42] <+RobinDLaws> And in this take on Chambers, can do the same to reality itself, splitting off alternate timelines dripping with menace.
[19:42] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[19:42] <+DrewC> Thank you, sounds very interesting.
[19:43] <+LucusPalosaari> Nice. glad to hear.
[19:43] <+Will> Man, I imagine the ‘suggested reading/watching’ list will be large
[19:43] <~Dan> Are all four books sold as a set, or as separate games?
[19:43] <+RobinDLaws> Lucus: Yes, sticking to the Chambers version, plus my riffs on that. This strips the Derleth and HPL out of Chambers, so no giant worm named Hastur.
[19:44] <+RobinDLaws> Dan, it is one item, four books in a lovely magnetic slipcase that unfolds to become a GM screen.
[19:44] <~Dan> Oh, very nice!
[19:44] <+RobinDLaws> However there is also a Paris supplement, a found object/collage guide to the city called Absinthe in Carcosa.
[19:44] <+LucusPalosaari> Is there anything you’re taking from say Ambrose Bierce or others that have included various references to The King in Yellow and/or Carcosa etc?
[19:44] <+RobinDLaws> And a novel, The Missing and the Lost.
[19:44] <+Will> Sorry if I’m hitting stuff I missed, but… so the original story was basically late 1800s scifi about the 1920s. Is any of that stuff in particular referenced, or is it more about the play itself?
[19:45] <+RobinDLaws> Lucus, it does draw some inspiration from Bierce and from other writers of the period who dabbled in horror: Maupassant, Leroux, Feval…
[19:45] <+xyphoid> so is the idea that you play a ‘campaign’ where you play through corresponding stuff in each setting in a cycle?
[19:45] <~Dan> (question pause after xyphoid’s question, please)
[19:46] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Guest56! Please set your name with the /nick command; e.g., /nick Dan 🙂 )
[19:46] <+RobinDLaws> Will: The Aftermath setting is the world from “Repairer of Reputations”, if it was real and not a hallucination, and the bad guys won, 97 years later.
[19:46] <+Will> Oooo
[19:47] <+RobinDLaws> Xyphoid: Exactly. You can play it while sticking to one setting, or in one-shots, but the funnest version is the one where you play all four in sequence with connections pinging back and forth between them.
[19:48] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[19:48] <~Dan> (Questions may resume!)
[19:49] <~Dan> Can you tell us about the tech level of The Wars and The Aftermath?
[19:49] <+LucusPalosaari> This isn’t a question, more a resource to others if you’re looking for a quick reference: (Link: http://kinginyellow.wikia.com/wiki/Have_You_Seen_The_Yellow_Sign%3F)http://kinginyellow.wikia.com/wiki/Have_You_Seen_The_Yellow_Sign%3F = an excellent Wiki on all things King in Yellow. I found it just recently as I was trying to remember Bierce’s name
[19:50] <+RobinDLaws> The Wars is weird Jules Verne-Art Nouveau weaponry, some of it made possible only by supernatural physics.
[19:51] <+RobinDLaws> In Aftermath, it’s the present day but because the US has been mired in an oligarchic dictatorship for 100 years tech is stuck in the 70s or 80s. No video, no internet, only those giant brick-like mobile phones, paper databases for fingerprints…
[19:51] <~Dan> (Howdy, KJ!)
[19:52] <~Dan> What happened to the weird tech stuff from The Wars?
[19:52] <+Bart_ThievesCant> So a stark improvement over reality in many ways :p
[19:52] <+RobinDLaws> But of course the Castaigne regime made great advantages in suppressive weaponry so there are exotic stun-guns, electro-whips, and other nasty stuff left kicking around from the old security state.
[19:52] <+RobinDLaws> The war machinery from The Wars is around but not on center stage. If you want to see a Walker you go down to the Imperial War Museum in Washington.
[19:53] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[19:53] <+DrewC> So following up on the concept of alternate timelines, is this something the King is doing in a deliberate and, to some degree, controlled manner? Is he crafting these timelines with intent, or is he throwing rocks at reality in pursuit of his goals, and these timelines are the result?
[19:54] <+Bart_ThievesCant> Is the game designed to be winnable // have happy endings?
[19:54] <+RobinDLaws> Drew, this is something the GM (and possibly to some extent the players) determine in play. The game presents a list of options as to what might be happening and you pick the one you like.
[19:54] <~Dan> (wb, Drew)
[19:54] <+Bart_ThievesCant> Or is it more like Darkest Dungeon // Arkham Horror
[19:54] <+DrewC> Cool, thanks.
[19:55] <+RobinDLaws> If you’re familiar with Ken’s Trail of Cthulhu stuff, where you get several different takes on each Old One and can pick between them, this provides a similar degree of GM optionality.
[19:56] <+RobinDLaws> Bart, it’s a horror game but doom is not foreordained. You might just be able to turn back the King at the end of the big climax and prevent him from destroying all of reality.
[19:56] <+RobinDLaws> Or whatever awful scheme you’ve decided he’s pursuing.
[19:56] <+RobinDLaws> Maybe he’s locked up in a tower back home and his feuding daughters are running the show.
[19:56] <+RobinDLaws> Can’t have only one answer to the big mystery!
[19:56] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[19:56] <~Dan> Is the King a supernatural entity, a “sufficiently advanced” entity, or something else?
[19:57] <+RobinDLaws> Exactly, Dan, exactly.
[19:57] * ~Dan chuckles
[19:57] <~Dan> Fair enough.
[19:57] <~Dan> 🙂
[19:57] <~Dan> You touched on this a bit, but can you give us some examples of supernatural tech from The Wars?
[19:57] <+DrewC> Will the books include much information on Carcosa itself as a place to adventure, or is that more in the background of the setting? Something glimpsed from a distance but never fully seen?
[19:58] <+RobinDLaws> Drew, the Carcosa Itself stretch goal got funded so I have to at least show you a bit of Carcosa Itself.
[19:59] <+DrewC> Fair enough 🙂
[19:59] <+RobinDLaws> But in general it’s a Bad Place you want to get out of once you’ve got into it.
[19:59] <+RobinDLaws> Dan here’s an example from the text:
[19:59] <+RobinDLaws> The aerial vehicle infantry soldiers like the squad members are most likely to step into is the dragonfly. This helicopter equivalent consists of a glassed-in cockpit divided into two bubbles recalling the eyes of its eponymous insect. A segmented body section houses up to eight soldiers. Combat dragonflies have mounted machine guns for gunners to strafe the
[20:00] <~Dan> (Cut off at “to strafe the”)
[20:00] <+RobinDLaws> the battlefield. These do not appear for craft detailed for medical or cargo use. Special grabbers attached to the bottom of the fuselage allow for added cargo. The dragonfly’s four wings flap up and down, granting it flight in either vertical or horizontal mode.
[20:00] <+RobinDLaws> Each wing consists of a wrought iron frame into which dozens of stained glass panels are fitted. These panels are made from levitation glass, a Carcosan technology. The dragonfly’s great maneuverability comes at the cost of fragility: dragonflies are vulnerable to small arms fire and crash all too frequently.
[20:01] <+RobinDLaws> And at the bottom of this page you can see what it looks like:
[20:01] <+RobinDLaws> (Link: http://site.pelgranepress.com/index.php/when-you-need-to-draw-an-ornithopter-you-need-to-build-an-ornithopter/)http://site.pelgranepress.com/index.php/when-you-need-to-draw-an-ornithopter-you-need-to-build-an-ornithopter/
[20:01] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:01] <~Dan> Freaky.
[20:02] <~Dan> So do both sides have access to this technology?
[20:02] <+RobinDLaws> Yes, almost as if someone is supplying both with the means of exotically entertaining mass destruction. Wonder why…
[20:02] <+GenoFoxx> what no heat rays?
[20:03] <+RobinDLaws> Heat rays aren’t quite old-timey enough. Maybe someone’s working on them in a lab somewhere, and you have to find out why people are being murdered nearby.
[20:03] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Mjack!)
[20:05] <+RobinDLaws> And if there are heat rays whoever invents them gets eaten by the monster in 1947, explaining why they don’t exist in Aftermath’s 2017.
[20:05] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:05] <~Dan> (Hwody, egytian!)
[20:05] <+DrewC> Any plans to publish a version of the play? Or maybe just the first act, for safety.
[20:05] <&egyptian> (hwody!)
[20:05] <~Dan> What’s the monster in 1947? 🙂
[20:06] <+RobinDLaws> I think someone has already done a version of the play, Drew.
[20:06] <+RobinDLaws> But on a side note, the Mysterious Package Company is working on a new version of its Yellow King product and it’s gonna be super cool.
[20:07] <+RobinDLaws> I dunno, Dan, a monster in 1947 might be a gravegrinder, a redmedic or of course a weeping mine. You never know.
[20:08] <~Dan> Ah… I thought you meant THE Monster, like there was some big bad that shows up that year. 🙂
[20:08] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:08] <+RobinDLaws> I meant the monster of the week in that scenario.
[20:08] <~Dan> Gotcha.
[20:08] <~Dan> Speaking of monsters, what sort of opposition to the PCs face in Paris?
[20:10] <~Dan> (Howdy, Viktyr!)
[20:11] <~Dan> (do the PCs face, rather)
[20:11] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Guest93! Please set your name with the /nick command; e.g., /nick Dan 🙂 )
[20:11] <+RobinDLaws> In addition to rowdy students, gendarmes and sinister operative in Paris, you might run into ghosts, gargoyles, mesmerists or patchwork men.
[20:12] <+RobinDLaws> And of course one of the PCs is a sculptor so what are the odds you’re going to fight a statue come to life at some point?
[20:12] <~Dan> Patchwork men being… Frankenstein monsters?
[20:12] <+RobinDLaws> Probably zero, right? I mean, WHY WOULD THAT HAPPEN.
[20:12] * ~Dan chuckles
[20:12] <+Will> Maybe hungry paintings?
[20:13] <+RobinDLaws> Patchwork men always pedantically correct you if you call them Frankensteins, Dan.
[20:13] <+Mjack> That never happens.
[20:13] <~Dan> 😀
[20:13] <+RobinDLaws> That’s the vibe exactly, Will.
[20:13] <+Will> Coool
[20:13] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:14] <+RobinDLaws> Another thing we might want to talk about are the new additions to GUMSHOE.
[20:14] <+Mjack> Do any of the settings allow for PC magic, psionic powers, or other nerd stuff?
[20:14] <~Dan> We might indeed! Do tell!
[20:14] <~Dan> But first… perhaps you should remind the folks of the basic GUMSHOE system?
[20:14] <+Will> Maybe some Silver John?
[20:15] <+RobinDLaws> Mjack there’s lots of nerd stuff but it all wants to kill you.
[20:15] * +Will is imagining hobo signs and hexes and mmm.
[20:15] <+Mjack> Of course.
[20:15] <+RobinDLaws> I’m not sure where I would wedge in a Silver John homage. Maybe he’s a DJ in This is Normal Now.
[20:16] <+RobinDLaws> So the GUMSHOE system. Basic idea is that it’s never interesting to fail to get information. So with your investigative abilities, the ones you use to find the info that moves the mystery forward, if you have the ability and look in the right place, you get the clue.
[20:17] <+RobinDLaws> No roll necessary. So no failing the roll and the GM faffs about for twenty minutes trying to get you the clue needed to move forward in some other way.
[20:17] * ~Dan nods
[20:17] <+RobinDLaws> This allows us to create much richer, more complex mysteries where the challenge is not finding the clues but putting them together to understand what it all means.
[20:18] <+Mjack> Players will often fail to understand a mystery given all the clues. 😀
[20:18] <+RobinDLaws> However in situations where it can be interesting to fail — trying to maintain your Composure when the Yellow King pounds down the door wearing your custodian’s corpse, when you’re running down the alley from a riot dog, when you’re trying to revive an injured comrade…
[20:18] <+Bart_ThievesCant> Can you walk us through a Gumshoe scenario? This sounds really, really interesting to me
[20:19] <+RobinDLaws> …then you have General abilities, where you have a pool of points assigned to each. When you attempt an action, you roll a d6, most against a Difficulty of 4, and add a number of points from the pool you specify in advance.
[20:20] <+RobinDLaws> How many people here know GUMSHOE?
[20:20] <+Bart_ThievesCant> Never heard of it. x__x I assumed it was intrinsic to your system
[20:20] <+Mjack> GUMSHOE original here.
[20:21] <~Dan> I know about it. Haven’t played it yet, although this game may change that. 🙂
[20:22] <+Mjack> Totally unsolicited plug: it’s my favorite system. Buy it if you at all like investigation games.
[20:22] <+RobinDLaws> Ok, so GUMSHOE has been around for 10 years now and there are various core games—starting with The Esoterrorists, and including Fear Itself, Mutant City Blues, The Gaean Reach, Night’s Black Agents, and best known, Trail of Cthulhu, our adaptation of Call of Cthulhu to the GUMSHOE system.
[20:22] <+RobinDLaws> This version has some notable changes from what we’ve seen before.
[20:23] <+RobinDLaws> Here combat is faster and entirely player-facing, meaning that only the players roll, not the GM as in other versions of the game.
[20:23] <+RobinDLaws> And there’s a new way of handling physical and psychic injuries. Instead of losing points in Health and Stability, which always have the same effects when you drop below certain thresholds, each attack type or hazard has its own specific effects.
[20:24] <+RobinDLaws> These are conveyed to the player on cards—Shock cards for mental distress, Injury cards for you guessed it, physical wounds.
[20:24] <+RobinDLaws> If you get a third Injury card, you die.
[20:24] <+RobinDLaws> If you get a third Shock card, you lose your bearings for good and the character leaves play.
[20:25] <+RobinDLaws> For example if you get into a brawl with students in Paris a minor Injury might look like this:
[20:25] <+RobinDLaws> Roughed Up
[20:25] <+RobinDLaws> Injury
[20:25] <+RobinDLaws> Roughed Up Injury Lose 1 Composure.
[20:25] <+RobinDLaws> Discard after any Physical success, or by spending 1 Athletics.
[20:26] <+RobinDLaws> Or the worse one would be:
[20:26] <+RobinDLaws> Sucker Punched
[20:26] <+RobinDLaws> Lose 2 Health.
[20:26] <+RobinDLaws> Roll a die; discard after that number of successes.
[20:26] <+RobinDLaws> —
[20:27] <+RobinDLaws> Those are really basic ones but in practice they introduce all kinds of variations to the experience of being smacked around mentally or otherwise.
[20:27] <+RobinDLaws> —
[20:27] <+RobinDLaws> There was a question about scenario structure.
[20:27] <+RobinDLaws> Each GUMSHOE game presents its own variation on the way scenarios are set up.
[20:27] <~Dan> (Yes, actually, let’s have another question pause while Robin gets caught up.)
[20:28] <~Dan> (Howdy, JamesGillen!)
[20:28] <+RobinDLaws> Basically you have Core scenes, which include the clues you need to solve the mystery and keep moving through it.
[20:28] <+RobinDLaws> Alternate scenes, which are cool and add nuance but you might skip them and never notice you’ve done it.
[20:28] <+RobinDLaws> And Antagonist Reaction scenes, where the foes you’ve riled up come after you with lead pipes, sword canes, fangs or whatever their deal is.
[20:29] <+RobinDLaws> In YKRPG there’s always an apparent mystery, and behind it, an Alien Truth related to Carcosa and the Yellow Sign.
[20:29] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:30] <~Dan> RobinDLaws: Did you see the question about magic/psionics/etc.?
[20:31] <+RobinDLaws> Yes, the answer is that all the nerd stuff in this game wants to kill you. You may be ordinary ordinary people, or accomplished ordinary people, but mind-reading and sorcery is what the other guy does.
[20:31] <~Dan> (Howdy, RayAtHigherGrounds!)
[20:32] <~Dan> So no desperate reading of forbidden tomes to banish the baddie?
[20:33] <+RobinDLaws> If you want to check out a preview alpha version of the YKRPG rules, you can do so by pledging at any level at our Kickstarter and gaining immediate access to the draft.
[20:33] <+RobinDLaws> Check it out at: (Link: http://kck.st/2tglJdB)http://kck.st/2tglJdB
[20:34] <+RobinDLaws> The forbidden tomes are all in the employ of the baddie.
[20:34] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Guest17!)
[20:35] <+Mjack> So if you do find yourself reading someones mind, you are probably in big trouble. 😀
[20:35] <+RobinDLaws> Yes you almost certainly have a Shock card that allows you to do something positive but is hurting you in other ways.
[20:36] <+RobinDLaws> By being a Shock card, for one thing.
[20:36] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:36] <~Dan> Hmm… So if the PCs don’t get any of the exotic stuff, how are they able to handle the supernatural?
[20:37] <+RobinDLaws> Guns work pretty good. Especially in The Wars, where you’re heavily armed soldiers. Or Aftermath, where you’re former insurgents now rebuilding society.
[20:37] <+Mjack> Is the Yellow King meant to be “on stage” or more behind the scenes kind of baddie?
[20:38] <+RobinDLaws> Mjack In my game he has only appeared in one “dream” sequence. His daughter Cassilda pops up a bit more often.
[20:38] <+RobinDLaws> Often the horror is about the effects of the reality bending book rather than direct confrontation with the potentates of Carcosa.
[20:39] <+RayAtHigherGrounds> (Hello!)
[20:39] <+RobinDLaws> Hey Ray.
[20:39] <~Dan> Guns work pretty well, eh? So would you say that’s another noteworthy departure from CoC?
[20:39] <~Dan> (Although I’ve often said that guns are more effective in CoC than they’re really supposed to be…)
[20:41] <+RobinDLaws> The effectiveness of violence varies between the four settings. In The Wars it’s easier to kill things than to capture them. In Aftermath you can return to War Footing but it increases your risk of emotional damage.
[20:41] <+RobinDLaws> As in CoC, some of the threats are nearly impossible to tackle in a fight and others yield to a well-tossed grenade.
[20:42] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:43] <~Dan> What is the opposition like in the fourth book?
[20:45] <+RobinDLaws> They have a modern spin to them, whether they’re possessed dolls from an expensive line of products little girls adore, walking urban legends, or soul-eating entities that locate their prey on social media.
[20:46] <~Dan> Cool. 🙂
[20:47] <~Dan> I think you might have answered this earlier, but just to clarify: Do these four books contain adventures for each of the four settings?
[20:47] <~Dan> (Okay, that was worded poorly.)
[20:47] <+Mjack> Does the intersection of the supernatural and the internet fugure heavily in Normal Now?
[20:48] <+RobinDLaws> Yes an intro scenario will appear in each book. The preview draft includes the Paris scenario.
[20:48] <~Dan> And do these adventures link together?
[20:49] <+RobinDLaws> The supernatural and ultra-modernity in general. There’s a lot of Cronenberg science horror bubbling beneath the surface.
[20:50] <+RobinDLaws> The scenarios for the books after Paris show you how to add elements that tie into the settings you’ve previously played.
[20:50] <+RobinDLaws> They’re not a full arc with a beginning middle and end.
[20:50] <~Dan> I see.
[20:50] <+RobinDLaws> We could do a really cool Masks of Nyarlathotep style mega campaign for it but that would be its own separate thing, for later on down the road.
[20:51] <+RobinDLaws> Here’s a further discussion on how the settings interweave and how that aspect will be the thing your players remember and talk about after you’ve run them through it:
[20:51] <+RobinDLaws> (Link: http://site.pelgranepress.com/index.php/how-connections-between-yellow-king-realities-emerge-in-play/)http://site.pelgranepress.com/index.php/how-connections-between-yellow-king-realities-emerge-in-play/
[20:52] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[20:52] <~Dan> Is it feasible to jump back and forth between the settings, or are they meant to be sequential?
[20:52] <+RobinDLaws> A cool trick is to give the players the impression that each setting is done for good and then suddenly pop back into it again.
[20:53] <+JamesGillen> heh
[20:53] <+RobinDLaws> In my game another connection occurred when one player in The Wars met his previous, now very elderly character from Paris—and immediately shot him when he proved to be annoying.
[20:54] * ~Dan chuckles
[20:54] <~Dan> (Howdy, Yalborap!)
[20:55] <~Dan> Oh, I keep forgetting to ask: What are the warring nations in The Wars? Is it a warped WW2, or something else?
[20:55] <+RobinDLaws> It is something else, but the exact composition of the sides depends on what you do in The Wars.
[20:56] <+RobinDLaws> Sorry, should read: depends on what you do in Paris.
[20:56] <+RobinDLaws> In my game France fights alongside Germany, Italy and Ethiopia against England, Scandinavia and Russia.
[20:56] <+RobinDLaws> In your game France might be allied with England against Germany, Italy and Russia.
[20:57] <~Dan> Ah… I was about to say, I didn’t think the PCs were meant to be such movers and shakers in The Wars.
[20:57] <+RobinDLaws> It’s another example of how the setting is input-determined so it isn’t the same for everyone or each time you run.
[20:58] <+RobinDLaws> If you’re somehow mixed up with the play, your actions might have a vast influence you didn’t anticipate.
[20:58] <+RobinDLaws> In Paris you’re just American art students but somehow…
[20:58] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Guest60!)
[20:59] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[21:00] <~Dan> I know you said PCs in Aftermath and This is Normal Now are alternate versions of each other, but are there built-in relationships between the PCs in the other settings?
[21:00] <+RobinDLaws> Why you guessed it Dan.
[21:01] <+RobinDLaws> Now we’ve never met and you’re not a ringer in any way are you Dan?
[21:01] <~Dan> Well, yes and no. We’ve met, but I’m not a ringer. 😀
[21:02] <+RobinDLaws> In The Wars you establish a connection of some kind—can be direct, can be metaphorical—to your Paris character. In The Wars you connect to either your Paris or Wars character.
[21:02] <+RobinDLaws> Somehow you’re all bound up by a greater destiny… OR DOOM.
[21:02] <+RobinDLaws> [done]
[21:03] <~Dan> And between The Wars and the Aftermath/Normal Now “twins”?
[21:03] <+RobinDLaws> Yes you are the same person in two wildly different timelines.
[21:04] <~Dan> Right, but are you the same person in both The Wars and Aftermath?
[21:05] <+RobinDLaws> No, The Wars is 1947, Aftermath is today.
[21:05] <~Dan> So is there the same sort of link between The Wars and the Aftermath PCs?
[21:05] <+RobinDLaws> Your Aftermath character has either a direct or metaphorical connection to either your Paris character or your Wars character. (An inventive player can work both of them in.)
[21:06] <~Dan> Gotcha.
[21:07] <~Dan> You mentioned that the effectiveness of violence varies between the settings?
[21:07] <+RobinDLaws> So in my game, the Aftermath character Nathan Dubois is the descendant of Paris character Georges Dubois, but like the same player’s medic character from The Wars learned to kill for the greater good and feels remorse about that.
[21:08] <+RobinDLaws> Yes, in The Wars it’s easier to kill enemies than to achieve other objectives (capture, fleeing, overrun) but in the other settings that turns around.
[21:09] <~Dan> (Welcome to #rpgnet, Spartan!)
[21:10] <~Dan> And that’s due to emotional distress?
[21:10] <+RobinDLaws> It’s due to genre emulation.
[21:11] <~Dan> Oh… I thought I read you saying that getting back on War Footing in Aftermath risked emotional trauma.
[21:11] <+RobinDLaws> Yes that bit is correct.
[21:11] <~Dan> So does violence cause that sort of emotional strain in the other two non-Wars settings?
[21:12] <+RobinDLaws> Situationally. If you kill someone in cold blood you may be saddled with Shock cards.
[21:13] <+RobinDLaws> In Aftermath it’s not so much about violence per se but about returning to a violent life you’re trying to put behind you.
[21:13] <~Dan> Ah, I see.
[21:14] <~Dan> So is Aftermath the aftermath of The Wars, or something else?
[21:15] <+RobinDLaws> You want to rebuild society and put down the gun BUT THE CARCOSANS KEEP PULLING YOU BACK IN
[21:15] * +Will laughs
[21:18] <~Dan> I see that the Aftermath takes place after a civil war, but is that part of The Wars or a separate event?
[21:18] <~Dan> (Howdy, Geek2theRight!)
[21:19] <+RobinDLaws> The Wars is a vast conflict in Europe in the late 40s. The civil war in Aftermath happened six months ago, and the characters were on the side of the revolutionaries throwing out the tyrannical, King in Yellow-backed government.
[21:21] <~Dan> Got it.
[21:22] <~Dan> In the time remaining, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up?
[21:22] <+RobinDLaws> I think we’ve done a good job of covering everything.
[21:23] <~Dan> Alrighty then!
[21:23] <+RobinDLaws> So I guess that leaves the part where I hope people reading this (now or in later transcript form) do indeed check out the Kickstarter.
[21:23] <~Dan> I’ll just remind folks that my Patreon is here: (Link: https://www.patreon.com/GMshoe)https://www.patreon.com/GMshoe
[21:23] <+RobinDLaws> Backers are now working on knocking down our 30th stretch goal.
[21:23] <~Dan> And if you’ll give me just a moment, I’ll get the log posted and link you!
[21:24] <~Dan> Oh, and here’s the Kickstarter: (Link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1721105501/the-yellow-king-roleplaying-game-from-robin-d-laws?ref=7efsmr)https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1721105501/the-yellow-king-roleplaying-game-from-robin-d-laws?ref=7efsmr
[21:24] <+RobinDLaws> Great, thanks. I’ll hold for the log link.