<+RLVieira> Hi, I’m Roy and today I’m here to talk about Weird Wild Wuxia West
<+RLVieira> this is a minimalist game (all rules on one sheet of paper) a hack of Ray Otus’s Sorcerers and Sellswords
<+RLVieira> (which is a hack of John Harper’s Lasers and Feelings)
<+RLVieira> It combines the tropes of the Old West, Kung Fu (the TV series), Wuxia/Wire-Fu film (like Crouching Tiger), and Dinosaurs
<~Dan> Thanks, RLVieira! The floor is open to questions!
<~Dan> Can you say a little bit about the setting? How do all these things fit together?
<+RLVieira> So the setting at it’s foundation the Old West with the other elements added in
<+RLVieira> there’s some Steampunk to it as well with the Eastern side of the US controlled by ‘the Robot Barons’ – rich industrialists that have had their brains placed into automatons of various sorts
<+RLVieira> mixing the Asian and Western elements is probably not as strange as it sounds, as many Wuxia and Samurai films are set during a period of relative lawlessness
<+RLVieira> with themes of honor, integrity, banditry, despots, etc
* ~Dan nods
<+RLVieira> the dinosaur piece was inspired by the art of Shaun Keenan – I encourage you to look it up if you haven’t seen it already — lots of fun
<~Dan> Is the setting an Earth variant? Or some other world?
<+RLVieira> though there are other precedents for that sort of thing (not all equally good)
<+RLVieira> yeah, it’s an alternative earth, though as with most story games you work together to create the world you’re playing in
<+RLVieira> as you can imagine with just one page of rules there’s not much room for world building
<+RLVieira> but there are hints of things you can use to start building a world
<~Dan> What are the elements that make up a character?
<+RLVieira> when The Boss (GM) asks the players a question about the world their answer becomes part of the fiction
<+RLVieira> So there’s your skill number, your calling and your style
<+RLVieira> the skill number with bipodal themes is a brilliant piece of game design by John Harper
<+RLVieira> instead of 6 (or more) attributes you have but a single number that you will use to measure success or failure at any risky action you choose to take
<+RLVieira> in my game the two poles are Blood and Iron
<+RLVieira> Blood covers things like magic, martial arts, swords and knives, qi powers, animal handling, physical feats
<+RLVieira> Iron covers things like guns, working with machines of any sort, dealing with people and civilization, persuasion, dealing with authority
<+RLVieira> you pick a single number between 2 & 5 – the lower the skill number you pick the better you are at ‘blood’ rolls and the higher your number the better you are at ‘gun’ rolls
<+RLVieira> Calling is similar to class — there are a few examples in the game, like dead-eye or duelist or sorcerer, but you can really make up any calling you like – the ones presented are suggestions only
<+RLVieira> style is how you carry yourself and comport yourself in the world – things like grizzled or comely or stubborn or serene
<~Dan> Free-form, then?
<~Dan> re: calling?
<+RLVieira> yes, that’s right, though people tend to choose one that’s listed as an example (tried to hit most of the most popular tropes in the example)
<+RLVieira> whenever you try to do something how many dice you roll depends on whether what you’re trying to do somehow fits with your calling and style
<+RLVieira> (do something risky that is)
<+RLVieira> there are a dozen or so to choose from in the sample ones provided
<~Dan> (Howdy, AmbulatoryCortex!)
<~Dan> ( AmbulatoryCortex: (Link: https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.drivethrurpg.com%2Fproduct%2F256597%2FWeird-Wild-Wuxia-West%3Ffbclid%3DIwAR0LWMIRCk8JhSM5gqgfNc5bPq4moNNPbGvIrZoazBl_-qWylP8QilKp8dE&h=AT3-HU-Xn4ih00163debHSAoaGyPFCuekO-Pp-SuT0IdWWQLGXhNngcZqQwdzsGI6D5W5GKaOzkhDGsOIv2pJukQ0CfNMQrZfxpLGnGRpDX3M8V_onppun5JSpWOi24F-mR9)https://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.drivethrurpg.com%2Fproduct%2F256597%2FWeird-Wild-Wuxia-West%3Ffbclid%3DIwAR0LWMIRCk8JhSM5gqgfNc5bPq4moNNPbGvIrZoazBl_-qWylP8QilKp8dE&h=AT3-HU-Xn4ih00163debHSAoaGyPFCuekO-Pp-SuT0IdWWQLGXhNngcZqQwdzsGI6D5W5GKaOzkhDGsOIv2pJukQ0CfNMQrZfxpLGnGRpDX3M8V_onppun5JSpWOi24F-mR9 )
<+RLVieira> hi there Ambulatory
<~Dan> ((Link: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/256597/Weird-Wild-Wuxia-West?fbclid=IwAR0LWMIRCk8JhSM5gqgfNc5bPq4moNNPbGvIrZoazBl_-qWylP8QilKp8dE)https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/256597/Weird-Wild-Wuxia-West?fbclid=IwAR0LWMIRCk8JhSM5gqgfNc5bPq4moNNPbGvIrZoazBl_-qWylP8QilKp8dE)
<~Dan> What is the dice rolling mechanic?
<+RLVieira> yeah so as stated above the number of dice you get to roll is dependent on if it fits your style or calling
<+RLVieira> on top of that you get an extra die for taking time to prepare and additionally an extra die if it’s something you’ve done in the fiction before
<+RLVieira> if you’re trying to accomplish something related to ‘blood’ you count dice over your skill number as successes
<+RLVieira> if you’re trying to do something using ‘guns’ successes are dice under your skill number
<~Dan> What kind of dice are these?
<+RLVieira> so for example, let’s say my calling is gunfighter and I pick a skill number of 5 — that’s the best at guns that I can get
<+RLVieira> let’s say I’m trying to shoot a target from a fair distance
<+RLVieira> Since i’m a gun fighter the Boss might give me +1d6 and let’s say I take a turn to prepare and really line up the shot, check the wind, etc he might give me another 1d6 for
<+RLVieira> I roll 3d6 and anything under a 5 counts as a success
<+RLVieira> what effect I get from that depends on how many successes I score
<+RLVieira> at the lower end I might just barely make it and there will be additional complications — at the higher end a complete success and it plays out as I hoped
<+RLVieira> the mechanic owes a lot to PBtA and the ‘success with complications’ that Vince Baker introduces with his Apocalypse World
* ~Dan nods
<+RLVieira> not to mention the player collaboration in creating the world
<~Dan> Sorry — did you say that the player would get an extra die for working within his Style as well?
<+RLVieira> yeah, so let’s say my gunslinger’s style is ‘serene’
<+RLVieira> maybe I tell the Boss (GM) that right before the shot I clear my mind of everything else, hold completely still and pull the trigger between heartbeats
<+RLVieira> the Boss might give me another +1d6
<~Dan> I see… And all of the above assumes that the player is using Iron? So he’d need to roll a 6 on each die for successes using Blood?
<+RLVieira> yeah, if my gunslinger with skill of 5 wanted to do something ‘magical’ then that’s going to be a lot tougher for him
<+RLVieira> but not entirely impossible with a bit of luck
* +eezo burps
<+eezo> oops sorry ‘scuse me
<+RLVieira> (how was dinner? :))
<+eezo> (early breakfast, it’s 0320 hrs, and good)
<+eezo> (thank you for asking)
<~Dan> What form does magic take in this setting?
<+RLVieira> so it can largely be determined by the players but the descriptions in the game hint at two major types
<+RLVieira> 1 is spirit magic that you might see cast by a native shaman and another is sorcery that is generally something imported from overseas (Europe or Asia)
<+RLVieira> I imagine something similar to the sorcerers in Big Trouble in Little China
<+RLVieira> though qi powers could also be considered ‘magical’
* ~Dan nods
<+RLVieira> that would be more like some of the feats completed by martial artists
<+RLVieira> or in wuxia flicks
<+RLVieira> mighty leaps, enhanced strength or endurance, healing by channeling qi…etc
<~Dan> So the game doesn’t really define what magic can do?
<+RLVieira> no, it’s all a negotiation between player and GM
<+RLVieira> the player can say what they want to do and the GM can tell them how tough it is
<+RLVieira> but the bigger the effect you try for the greater the consequences if you fail
<~Dan> When you say how tough something is, how does that show up mechanically?
<+RLVieira> the GM can subtract dice from your dice pool
<~Dan> Does that mean that some actions will be impossible?
<+RLVieira> so the gunslinger is trying to shoot with the sun in his eyes and unpredictable winds — the GM could subtract 1 or 2 die
<+RLVieira> the rules don’t spell that out — in most cases you depend on the good faith of the players and the GM — that everyone is there to tell a good story and not break the game
<+RLVieira> so if a sorcerer wants to change earth’s orbit so that it falls into the sun — the GM could disallow it, though if someone is trying to do that should you really be playing with them in the first place?
* ~Dan chuckles
<~Dan> How does combat work?
<+RLVieira> yeah so again based more on the fiction than stats (which some may find ‘squishy’)
<+RLVieira> let’s say my gunslinger wants to shoot a man in a duel — if I get lots of successes I kill him dead. with less successes I may kill him but also be wounded. with zero successes I get shot and he or she gets clean away.
<+RLVieira> your character only dies when you want them to
<+RLVieira> though the GM can add additional difficulties to make it harder and harder for you to succeed
<+RLVieira> so if you’re wounded you may have additional dice taken away from skill attempts
<~Dan> Does the target get a chance to defend?
<+RLVieira> all dependent on player rolls
<+RLVieira> similar to PBtA — the GM doesn’t roll for opponent
<~Dan> Do weapons matter?
<+RLVieira> and choosing your own death reminds me of Swords Without Master
<+RLVieira> no, weapons dont really other than as flavor or part of the fiction
<+RLVieira> it would be pretty difficult to cause a landslide with a bullet…easier with a stick of dynamite
<~Dan> How would you handle issues of scale, like a human fighting a dinosaur?
<+RLVieira> yeah, like most things all depends on the fiction
<+RLVieira> it’d be difficult shot to shoot a t-rex in the brain
<+RLVieira> if you take them on one on one you’re likely to get mangled and left for dead
<~Dan> (Howdy, Woo77!)
<+RLVieira> though again we have examples in the fiction where people take on dinosaurs with guns or even more primitive weapons
<+RLVieira> like in Turok comics
<+RLVieira> (hi Woo)
<~Dan> So would the GM arbitrarily determine how many hits a dino can take?
<+RLVieira> yeah, pretty much
<+RLVieira> though what you really want to get at is how killing the dinosaur (or not killing it) advances the story in some way
<+AmbulatoryCortex> Sounds hard on the GM. What tools does the system give the GM to make their life easier?
<~Dan> (Howdy, Silverlion!)
<+RLVieira> these type of ‘cooperative’ story games are (supposedly) easier on the GM – less prep required because anytime the GM doesn’t know something they can ask a player to provide the answer
<~Dan> (Howdy, DukeOfChutney!)
<+RLVieira> but it does take more improvisational skill by GMs
<~Dan> How do you resolve attacks on PCs?
<+RLVieira> yeah PC on PC action can be rough
<+RLVieira> so let’s say my gunslinger wants to shoot the party sorcerer
<~Dan> Well, I mean by an NPC, but yeah, PC vs. PC would be interesting to see.
<+RLVieira> if I’m successful on my skill roll the GM might say that the sorcerer is out of commission
<+RLVieira> but really only the sorcerer’s player can decide if he’s dead
<~Dan> (You there, DukeOfChutney? 🙂 )
<+RLVieira> what does the GM do if I say “I shoot the sorcerer 25 times in the head”
<+RLVieira> it’s a magical setting so the sorcerer might say “I transmigrate my spirit to the gem on the mayor’s tie pin”
<+RLVieira> he might escape death but land in a situation with additional complications (like what do I do if I don’t have a body or how do I get out of here)
<+RLVieira> again, you’re operating on good faith that all the players are trying to create a good and interesting story and not trying to ‘break’ the game
* ~Dan nods
<~Dan> How do you resolve NPC attacks on PCs?
<+RLVieira> yeah so let’s say someone comes at my gunflighter guns ablazin’
<+RLVieira> the GM asks the player “what do you do”
<+RLVieira> depending on the line of defense we again roll against the skill number and see how many successes
<+RLVieira> you’re not limited to a simple defense roll
<+RLVieira> the fiction determines the results and consequences
<+RLVieira> if I’m a deadeye I might try to shoot the guns out of his hands — if I’m flashy I migh try shoot the nail holding the horseshoe above the door so it falls and clunks him on the head, or maybe I just dive under the table
<~Dan> So what would the impact of successes be on a defense roll?
<+RLVieira> depending on number of successes…maybe I only get one gun and now he’s reloading the other, maybe I hit the lamp instead of the horeshoe and now the saloon is on fire…
<&Silverlion> (Allo Dan!)
<~Dan> So it’s not really a defense roll, but rather a roll for the entire combat?
<+RLVieira> an entire combat may take 1 roll or multiple rolls
<+RLVieira> if I only shoot one gun out of his hand and he’s reloading I’m still in danger
<+RLVieira> yeah, so to put it another way, combat is not a special thing just a different type of risky situation
<~Dan> Well, let’s try another example: What happens if the PC is being attacked but is only trying to avoid being hit?
<+RLVieira> like jumping between boxcars on a speeding locomotive or trying to lasso that bandit
<+RLVieira> yeah so if my response to being shot at is I try to sneak behind the bar and slip out the back a complete success and I lose my attackers
<+RLVieira> a partial and they may still be hot on my trail but I’ve bought myself some time
<+RLVieira> a failure and now they’re right on top of me with a gun pointed at me
<~Dan> (Howdy, RayM!)
<~Dan> How prevalent is steam technology in the setting?
<+RLVieira> yeah so again since you create the setting with your players as common or as rare as you like
<~Dan> Ah, right.
<+RLVieira> though in my games I usually but most of the technology in the hands of the ‘bad guys’ if you’re playing an Elementalist as your calling you’ll have much greater access to those kinds of resources
<+RLVieira> *put not but
<~Dan> What is an Elementalist in this context?
<+RLVieira> if you play an Automaton as your calling you need to decide who built you…
<+RLVieira> sorry that should have been “Engineer”
<+RLVieira> from the rules: Engineer – Whether working on machines powered by steam and hydrogen or djinn (endjinns?) and efreet, you can operate it, fix it or sabotage it.
<+RLVieira> if you have a high skill roll you can expect your dealing more with steampunk tech
<+RLVieira> a low skill roll and you’re closer to some sort of technomancer
<+RayM> So this is like FATE, where the players and/or GM creates the setting in which the group will play?
<+RLVieira> yeah, like FATE though I more often compare it to PBtA like Dungeon World
<~Dan> Is this your first published RPG?
<+RLVieira> no, I published another abt 5 years back ‘Swords of Almuric’
<~Dan> Ah, cool.
<~Dan> What is that one about?
<+RLVieira> it’s funny I thot this would be a quick and easy project between some larger projects I’m working on but it took alot more time than I expected
<+RLVieira> SoA is a Sword and Planet setting based on the only Sword and Planet story every written by Robert E Howard (if it was indeed written by him – there’s some debate on that)
<+RLVieira> originally written for Barbarians of Lemuria, I also ported it to D&D
<~Dan> Huh. Interesting. I hadn’t heard of a sword and planet story by Howard.
<+RLVieira> yeah, not his best work, though I suspect that’s because large portions of it were not written by him
<~Dan> What’s your next project in gaming? Anything in the works?
<+RLVieira> well I’ve started working on The California Prayerbook – adapting the WWWW to using playing cards and adding some additional options for shaping the narrative
<+RLVieira> and a few Sword and Sorcery supplements in the pipeline
<&Silverlion> (Goodnight all)
<~Dan> (Bye, Silverlion!)
<+RayM> (Goodnight Silverlion!)
<+RLVieira> some Dungeon World playbooks for S&S
<+RLVieira> a bronze age campaign setting
<+RLVieira> some adaptions of classic D&D modules to DW
<+RLVieira> a city/world setting based on the Cthulhu mythos
<+RLVieira> too many pots on the stove
<~Dan> Busy guy!
<+RLVieira> no, it’s just easier to start projects than it is to finish them 😛
<~Dan> Heh. 🙂
<~Dan> In the time remaining, is there anything we haven’t covered that you’d like to bring up?
<+RLVieira> well the game is free so I encourage everyone to give it a spin
<~Dan> And usual reminder: Gratuities are welcome at (Link: https://gmshoe.wordpress.com/the-gmshoes-tip-jar/)https://gmshoe.wordpress.com/the-gmshoes-tip-jar/ 😀
<+RayM> Tip your bartender. 🙂
<+RLVieira> and though some of the supplements have a fee attached I’d be happy to send them out gratis for anyone willing to provide feedback on how it played at the table
<+RLVieira> Thanks for the opportunity to come on and talk about my game
<~Dan> Absolutely, RLVieira! Thanks for joining us!
<~Dan> Please know that you’re always welcome to hang out with us. 🙂
<+RLVieira> Goodnight all!
<~Dan> If you’ll give me just a minute, I’ll get the log posted and link you!