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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Monday, May 30, 2011

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Intervention- Session 1 (Working title)

Joy Shamrock receives a chilling psychic image.

Experimenting with game structures

As usual, this is just me daydreaming about mechanisms to make my solo experience closer to the feel I believe an RPG should have. Lots of half baked ideas, etc. I do intend to play with these in actual play...some day.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Final thoughts on Shock: God For A Day

The first thing that pops to mind is that I need more practice as a storyteller. While I've been away from the blog and roleplaying, I've dedicated myself to having a lot of fun with bad B movies (thanks Millcreek!), and I feel like my finished Shock session fits the mold-- bad dialogue, melodrama, and plot holes galore. If it was by some ironic twist of fate made into a movie, I could totally see it looking like The Thirsty Dead (hilarious bad movie, by the way).

I think the play sessions were fun for me, though, and I think that the structure I worked out will be useful for future sessions of Shock.

Kaluvan Scene #4 – Conflict Breakdown

[Summary of last scene:

Kaluvan, under the compulsion of his last vision, is still preaching the new Revelation to the crowd, as are other Oracles. They are all denouncing the Kinta’s lies in setting up a false worship, and suppressing the true Revelation.

The so-called Infidels had infiltrated the Oracles with their own agents. Suggestions of this Goddess were implanted as a means of disruption. The combination of hypnotic suggestions and mind altering drugs made it possible to compel people to do things they wouldn’t otherwise do.

Kaluvan and the other Oracles successfully move people’s hearts. They excitedly receive their “liberators” as brothers and sisters, only to be subjugated again. This time, by mass hypnosis which makes them fear losing their hard won “liberty” against a perpetual enemy, kept at bay by their new “protectors”.

(Pretty hamfisted, I know)
]
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Conflict Breakdown:

[Antagonist has 3 credits left. This will be the final scene.]

Kaluvan, under the compulsion of his last vision, is still preaching the new Revelation to the crowd, as are other Oracles. They are all denouncing the Kinta’s lies in setting up a false worship, and suppressing the true Revelation.

Protag: Kaluvan’s intent is to figuratively open the gates of the invading army by opening the people’s hearts to them. The people will welcome the invaders as liberating brothers and sisters. They are God’s true army.

Step 1: Choose Minutiae from the Shock



Randomly choose 1d4 existing Minutae from the Shock associated with your Protagonist.

Is the current vision of God false? Is God in fact a Goddess? Is there no God? [Implied in narration but unanswered.]



Step 2: Choose Minutiae from the Issue(s)

For the Issue associated with your character, ask Mythic: Will any Minutae from this Issue be used? Odds 70 .

Is there a Goddess that can make you love her against your free will? Is the use of hypnosis in conjunction with Besh (or some other substance?) enough to do that? [implied in narration but unanswered conclusively]

Opposition is kept in check via the use of fear. [So far, I've only implied this in narration.]

The Kinta can and will control your major life decisions.



Step 3: Additional Minutiae

Ask Mythic: Will any additional Minutae be used? 30% answer-17-Yes

If Yes, randomly determine from which unused group (liklely other Issues) . Then randomly choose 1d4 minutiae. You will use them through the lens of your Shock/Issue intersection.

There is an underground conspiracy to undermine the current planetary order


Antagonist: The so-called Infidels had infiltrated the Oracles with their own agents. Suggestions of this Goddess were implanted as a means of disruption. The combination of hypnotic suggestions and mind altering drugs made it possible to compel people to do things they wouldn’t otherwise do. [already implied in the fiction]

Protag: Kaluvan’s intent is to figuratively open the gates of the invading army by opening the people’s hearts to them. The people will welcome the invaders as liberating brothers and sisters. They are God’s true army.

This is Submission to the new Revelation.

Submission vs Rebellion – 3: must roll over 3

3d10: 6,1,9 `

3d14: 1,3,2

Antag’s stake: Both the native underground resistance, and the visions of the “Goddess” are a creation of the so-called infidels’ agents [Ianego turned, and Sinamar]. After their “liberation”, they also exploit and control the population.

[Mythic twist: 34,58: Lie, Stalemate]

They are made to fear losing their new “protectors”, who protect their “liberty” against their enemies. The war against them is perpetually in stalemate. This is done via mass hypnosis.

They also begin to lie about threats to their newfound “liberation”

This is Lies.

Truth vs Lies 7: Must roll under 7.

[Will Mythic use 2d10 towards antag intent? 50% answer 19-yes]

2d10: 10,3

1d4: 2

[Will audience participate? 50% -13-yes. Will it help protag’s intent? 50%-No. Will it help antag’s intent? 50%-28 yes]

1d4: 4

They both accomplish their intent.

Kaluvan and the other Oracles successfully move people’s hearts. They excitedly receive their “liberators” as brothers and sisters, only to be subjugated again. This time, by mass hypnosis which makes them fear losing their hard won “liberty” against a perpetual enemy, kept at bay by their new “protectors”.

Sercet Scene #3 - Conflict Breakdown

[ This one should have come directly after Kaluvan's scene.

Summary:

Given the unrest that has begun, Sercet has taken Rhea back to the Sacred City in order to keep both of them safe until the turmoil has subsided.
Some Oracles seem to have gone mad; proclaiming a new Revelation from the true Goddess of time forgotten, while condemning the Kinta. Given the sacredness of the Oracles, the unrest has magnified, while the Kinta violence has just begot more violence. The mob has overflowed into the Sacred City.

A number of servants has shown up to where Sercet and Rhea are taking shelter. They come for
Sercet, but Rhea speaks what Sercet recognizes as the Infidel language to the servants.
A very heated exchange occurs, but they eventually leave him alone. Rhea seems conflicted inside, and finally tells him: “It’s over, Sercet. The old must be abandoned.”
Rhea is able to convince Sercet to move on, and join the flow. Sercet does so, though he still has the same feelings inside, so has doubts about this new reality. In private, he attempts to connect with his God once more via the Bhesh drug—to test once and for all his faith. In the process, he overdoses, but does find his God. Sercet goes into a peaceful eternal sleep on his God’s bossom. ]
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Sercet Scene #3 - Conflict Breakdown
[The antagonist only has 4 credits left, so this will be Sercet’s last scene. Story goal must be resolved in this scene. ]
Given the unrest that has begun, Sercet has taken Rhea back to the Sacred City in order to keep both of them safe until the turmoil has subsided.
Step 1: Choose Minutiae from the Shock

    1. Randomly choose 1d4 existing Minutiae from the Shock associated with your Protagonist.
·         Is the current vision of God false? Is God in fact a Goddess? Is there no God? [Implied in narration but unanswered.]

Step 2: Choose Minutiae from the Issue(s)
    1. For the Issue associated with your character, ask Mythic: Will any Minutiae from this Issue be used? Odds 70 . Answer: 70 Yes
    2. If "Yes", randomly choose 1d4 existing Minutiae from the Issue associated with your Protagonist
·         Have rebels infiltrated the ranks of the Oracles/Mediums with visions of a "Goddess"? [Implied in narration but unanswered.]

Step 3: Additional Minutiae
    1. Ask Mythic: Will any additional Minutiae be used? Odds 40% Answer-70 No

Step 4: "Destroy the Protagonist's Life"
Antagonist:  Some Oracles seem to have gone mad; proclaiming a new Revelation from the true Goddess of time forgotten, while condemning the Kinta. Given the sacredness of the Oracles, the unrest has magnified, while the Kinta violence has just begot more violence. The mob has overflowed into the Sacred City.
A number of servants has shown up to where Sercet and Rhea are taking shelter. They come for Sercet, but Rhea speaks what Sercet recognizes as the Infidel language to the servants.
 Mythic twist: [8,5][Oppose,Inside]
A very heated exchange occurs, but they eventually leave him alone. Rhea seems conflicted inside, and finally tells him: “It’s over, Sercet. The old must be abandoned.”
[This time, we are just going to settle the Story Goal as the Antagonist does not have enough credits for more than one conflict.]
Step 5: After the Protagonist has had a chance to react:


[This time, we are just going to settle the Story Goal as the Antagonist does not have enough credits for more than one conflict.]
Protagonist Stakes: Sercet refuses to rebel against God and join what he considers a blasphemy and a lie. This causes Rhea to abandon him in disgust.
Will use Truth, as he believes it in his heart of hearts.
Truth vs Lies – 6 : Roll over 6

3d10: 10,7,4
Antagonist Stakes: Sercet goes on a Besh trip one last time, seeking reassurance from his God. He does not find God, however. There is nothing.
Mythic twist: [74,56]: Divide,Wishes: Sercet will die conflicted.
[Will Mythic use 2d10? 50% - 83 – no. Will it use 3d10? 50% 45 –Yes]
Will use Lies, as God is a lie to the Antagonist.
Truth vs Lies – 5: Must roll under 5

3d10: 8,8,5
1d4: 4

[Will Audience participate? 50% - 48-Yes. Will it use it to help Sercet’s intent? 50% - No. Will it use it to help Antagonist intent? 62-no. It will use it against Sercet’s intent.]
1d4: 3
Sercet fails his itent [10-4-3 = 3 < 6 ]
Antagonist roll falls exactly on fulcrum.
Sercet has overdosed.
Opposition is Protagonist, and gets to tell what happens, if Antag fails intent: If Antag fails, Sercet finds his God, and feels like he goes into an eternal sleep in his God’s bossom.
3:d10: 10,7,7 – antagonist fails [7 > 5]
Interpretation: Rhea is able to convince Sercet to move on, and join the flow. Sercet does so, though he still has the same feelings inside, so has doubts about this new reality. In private, he attempts to connect with his God once more via the Bhesh drug—to test once and for all his faith. In the process, he overdoses, but does find his God. Sercet goes into a peaceful eternal sleep on his God’s bossom.

Erro Scene #3 - Conflict Breakdown

[I should have published this scene before Sercet's, but it's the same difference.

Summary:

Seeing that it is no longer safe anywhere, Erro has escaped from his own household hoping to avoid his former servants. He has adopted the disguise of an Oracle, joining in the denouncing whenever he can’t avoid contact with people.
Cavanu intercepts Erro as he runs into a crowd. “Hello, father”. He spits it out like vinegar. Erro notices that he is now walking without crutches. He accuses Erro of bringing this doom upon the Kinta, for forsaking their role as shepherds; for twisting the Revelation to fulfill their own greed.
 
Cavanu talks about how the Kinta was never meant to control people’s lives, or rule them. The Kinta should have cared for the flock, selflessly. God’s rewards for the faithful, Kinta or not, would be in the next world. He accuses Erro, in front of the crowd, of once more displaying his greed and his lies by adopting the supposed new Revelation. He accuses Erro of being part of the power keeping the populace from achieving their dreams.
Erro tries to silence Cavanu, but Cavanu stabs him in front of the crowd. “This is for Mother.” As Cavanu speaks those words, he fatally stabs his own father. As the furious crowd moves into him, Cavanu vainly tries to explain again who Erro is, but in their frenzy they fail to listen to him. As far as they are concerned, an Oracle has been martyred.

Cavanu is beaten to death, and Erro’s body is lifted up as he is proclaimed a saint, nobody recognizing who he really was. If anyone recognized him, they never exposed the truth, as this martyrdom has cemented the people behind the new reality.]
Erro Scene #3 - Conflict Breakdown
[Antagonist has 6 credits left. I’ve decided we should settle Erro’s story goal here.]
Seeing that it is no longer safe anywhere, Erro has escaped from his own household hoping to avoid his former servants. He has adopted the disguise of an Oracle, joining in the denouncing whenever he can’t avoid contact with people.
Step 1: Choose Minutiae from the Shock

    1. Randomly choose 1d4 existing Minutae from the Shock associated with your Protagonist.
·         Serve God in this world, and expect amazing rewards in the next world.
·         The Kinta's role is that of rulers and shepherds.
·         Subjects often serve God by being recruited to fulfill and fulfill his Divine Design as defined by the leadership.
·         Is the current vision of God false? Is God in fact a Goddess? Is there no God? [Implied in narration but unanswered.]

Step 2: Choose Minutiae from the Issue(s)
    1. For the Issue associated with your character, ask Mythic: Will any Minutae from this Issue be used? Odds 70 .
    2. If "Yes", randomly choose 1d4 existing Minutae from the Issue associated with your Protagonist
  • A war against "unbelievers" is taking place. This war is being used to maintain power and provide resources to maintain lifestyle of Kinta. The Sun Fields was built to aid in this war. [Stated via narration. What's unanswered is who these unbelievers are?]

Step 3: Additional Minutiae
    1. Ask Mythic: Will any additional Minutae be used? 30%
Answer: 71-no
Step 4: "Destroy the Protagonist's Life"
Once you come up with an idea on how to do that, let Mythic add its own twist by using the Action/Subject table. Re-interpret idea based on the results.

Antagonist: Cavanu intercepts Erro as he runs into a crowd. “Hello, father”. He spits it out like vinegar. Erro notices that he is now walking without crutches. He accuses Erro of bringing this doom upon the Kinta, for forsaking their role as shepherds; for twisting the Revelation to fulfill their own greed.
[Mythic twist: 32, 56: Delay, Wishes]
He talks about how the Kinta was never meant to control people’s lives, or rule them. The Kinta should have cared for the flock, selflessly. God’s rewards for the faithful, Kinta or not, would be in the next world. He accuses Erro, in front of the crowd, of once more displaying his greed and his lies by adopting the supposed new Revelation.
He accuses Erro of being part of the power keeping the populace from achieving their dreams.
Protagonist stakes: Erro tries to silence Cavanu, but Cavanu stabs him in front of the crowd. “This is for Mother.”
Protag uses Lies, as Erro is paying for all his lies.
Truth vs Lies- 5 : must roll under 5

3d10: 3,1,10
1d4: 4
Antagonist stakes: Cavanu exposes Erro for what he is.
Antagonist uses Rebellion. It’s an act of rebellion.
Submission vs Rebellion 6: must roll under 6

[Will antagonist use 3d10? 50% answer 46-Yes]

3d10: 4,9,10
3d4: 1,2,2

[Will Audience participate? 50% - 22 yes. Will it help Protagonist intent? 50% 33-yes. Doesn’t matter, Protag already won intent.]

As Cavanu speaks those words, he fatally stabs his own father. As the furious crowd moves into him, Cavanu vainly tries to explain again who Erro is, but in their frenzy they fail to listen to him. As far as they are concerned, an Oracle has been martyred.
Cavanu is beaten to death, and Erro’s body is lifted up as he is proclaimed a saint, nobody recognizing who he really was. If anyone recognized him, they never exposed the truth, as this martyrdom has cemented the people behind the new reality.

Kaluvan Scene #3 - Conflict Breakdown

[It's been so long since I looked at this draft that I really don't feel the inspiration to write down dialogue. The most I can do is summarize it by taking the sketches out of the conflict breakdown that follows.
Kaluvan has been single mindedly immersing himself into meditation and the duties of the monastery as a way of avoiding thoughts about his family. He has just finished another cleansing session with Sinamar. He doesn't know now when he will serve as Oracle.
Meanwhile, the Holy Army has already been defeated, and is actually in retreat. Nobody outside of the Kinta seems to know this, however.
During his Cleansing with Sinamar, Kaluvan once again has a vision of the Goddess. She reveals to him that she has turned against her Shepherds, for misleading the Flock. She claims Kaluvan as her prophet, and he is to deliver the message: “Return to the Holy Mother. Rise up against the false god.” The Goddess promises reunification with his family (that he loves the most in the world).
Initially, Kaluvan resists this as another reaction to the Bhesh or a cruel joke of some kind. Kaluvan will not risk his family or friends any further for some false vision. However, his will is overpowered, and as a result loses his faith in the old God, and begins to think that we are nothing but puppets of destiny (both of these new "features" added to his character sheet, per Shock rules. ). 
 Kaluvan begins to spread the new Revelation and to renounce the Kinta loudly, like a mad preacher. First, inside the monastery. He then leaves the monastery and does the same outside, where there are already signs of unrest.




His wife is taken to Repentance, being accused of taking part in the unrest. His boy is taken away to an orphanage to be taught by Kinta. ]

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Kaluvan Scene #3 - Breakdown
[Antagonist has 9 credits left. At least one more scene left.]
Step 0: What is the Protagonist doing?
Kaluvan has been single mindedly immersing himself into meditation and the duties of the monastery as a way of avoiding thoughts about his family. He has just finished another cleansing session with Sinamar. He doesn't know now when he will serve as Oracle.
Step 1: Choose Minutiae from the Shock
We will choose 2 random minutiae from the shock:
·         Subjects are induced to connect to the Godhead via a natural chemical that affects brain waves (Bhesh). The subject is hypnotically guided by someone older in the faith.
·         Subjects often serve God by being recruited to fullfill and fulfill his Divine Design as defined by the leadership.
Step 2: Choose Minutiae from the Issue(s)
For the Issue associated with your character, ask Mythic: Will any Minutae from this Issue be used? Odds 70 .
Answer: 64 - Yes.
If "Yes", randomly choose 1d4 existing Minutae from the Issue associated with your Protagonist
Will randomly choose 3 Minutiae (1,2,5):
·         Opposition is kept in check via the use of fear. [So far, I've only implied this in narration.]
·         Speaking out against those over you is to rebel against God.[So far, I've only implied this in narration.]
·         The Kinta can and will control your major life decisions.
If you have cool new Minutiae you want to use in this scene, ask Mythic: Will the new Minutiae be modified (by Mythic)?
I want the following Minutiae: "The Kinta has been withholding the truth about the War. The tide turned significantly in years past, and the Holy Army has been on the defensive. The Infidels are nearly at the door."
If "Yes", roll on the Action/Subject table. This will be Mythic's twist to the new Minutae.
[53,70]: Adversity, Extravagance: The Holy Army has already been defeated! They're just fleeing!
Step 3: Additional Minutiae
Ask Mythic: Will any additional Minutae be used? Odds 40%
Answer: 91-No
Step 4: "Destroy the Protagonist's Life"
During his Cleansing with Sinamar, Kaluvan once again has a vision of the Goddess. She reveals to him that she has turned against her Shepherds, for misleading the Flock. She claims Kaluvan as her prophet, and he is to deliver the message: “Return to the Holy Mother. Rise up against the false god.”
Once you come up with an idea on how to do that, let Mythic add its own twist by using the Action/Subject table. Re-interpret idea based on the results.
 [39,56]: Bestow, Wishes: If he does this, the Goddess promises he will be reunited with that he loves the most.
Protagonist: Kaluvan has enough presence of mind to think this is another reaction to the Bhesh or a cruel joke of some kind. Kaluvan will not risk his family or friends any further for some false vision.
Step 5: After the Protagonist has had a chance to react:
Assume that a Conflict is called for or ask Mythic if it will call a Conflict. Odds should be 70%.
Answer: 34. Mythic calls a conflict. Let’s set the stakes.
Protagonist:  If I win, Kaluvan resists this command, and confronts Sinamar regarding these visions. She and Ianego will tell him whatever the truth is.
Antagonist:  If I win, his wife and child are caught in the turmoil of the starting revolution. She is identified as one speaking out against the Kinta, and sent to Repentance as part of the crackdown.
Protagonist: I don’t really want that to happen to wife and child, so I’ll use 1d10 and 3d4. I will use Truth, because I want to learn the Truth.
Truth vs Lies – 4 : needs to roll over 4
1d10: 3
3d4: 3, 2, 4

[Antagonist will use 6 credits]
Will Antagonist use 3d10 towards his intent? 65% Answer: 9-Yes
Antagonist will use Rebellion, because he wants Kaluvan’s family will be swept by the events of the rebellion.
Submission vs Rebellion 7 : Needs to roll under 7
3d10:  2,4,5
3d4:  3,4,2
[Will audience participate? Odds 50% answer: 64- no]
Kaluvan fails his intent.
Antagonist achieves his.
[I don’t like the Protagonist result, so I’m risking the “God rewards sacrifice” link. If I lose again, this link will be changed to “God is not with us”.]
Protagonist:  1d10: 2
Kaluvan fails again. Link is changed to “God is not with us”
Protagonist has also gained two new features:
·         I am just a puppet
·         We cannot fight against destiny
He begins to spread the new Revelation and to renounce the Kinta loudly, like a mad preacher. First, inside the monastery. He then leaves the monastery and does the same outside, where there are already signs of unrest.
His wife has been taken to Repentance, being accused of taking part in the unrest. His boy has been taken away to an orphanage to be taught by Kinta.
[Antagonist has 3 credits left. Story goal will be resolved on Scene #4.]