Mouseguard RPG info

edited May 2008 in Story Games
I'm sure i'm late to the party, but i just saw it on cbr.cc

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=16297

Comments

  • I played the current version of this at UberCon. It was quite fun. Probably my favorite iteration of BW so far.
  • I think I'm going to faint.

    *pauses*

    Wow.
  • This was interesting:

    "There's an anti-traditional RP movement in gaming, and some of that was jarring for me, where I felt like the dinosaur in the room, trying to pick up this newfangled way of playing."
  • Robert, I focused in on that, too.

    Mike
  • Ooooh, it's going to be a square book, 8" x 8".
  • I'm really hoping that this game is more friendly to newbie players than BW/BE was/is. I have a group of players that would love to use this setting, I think, but would run screaming from the room if face with learning to play BW or BE.
  • That's like, hella-mega-awesome. And yeah, I'd like to see a more newbie friendly version of BW myself.
  • I would just be happy with a version of BW that was more compatible with the play goals of my local group, newbies or no.
  • MG is way, way more friendly to newbie players than BW/BE.

    p.
  • edited May 2008
    Posted By: Jonathan WaltonI would just be happy with a version of BW that was more compatible with the play goals of my local group, newbies or no.
    What are the play goals of your local group? Because I can safely say that any BW variant I design will remain toxic to those hostile to BW's core tenets.
  • Luke, can you tell us what remains the same and what changes, between BW and Mouseguard?
  • Luke: I wouldn't say we're hostile to BW's core tenets. We're just more likely to play games with a lower level of required investment than BW. We tend to play a lot of different games and, thus, have less time to devote to really getting into any particular system. So if it's easier to pick up Mouse Guard and run with it, having a great time without needing to be really familiar with the rules beforehand, that would work much better for us. I love many things about BW, but it seems to more strongly reward long-term play and deep investment in the rules, making it harder to pull out for a one-shot or 2-3 session arc. But maybe I'm wrong and I just haven't gotten the chance to play it enough.
  • Sweet. Add it to the buy list.
  • Posted By: Thunder_GodLuke, can you tell us what remains the same and what changes, between BW and Mouseguard?
    Burning Wheel is a fantasy roleplaying system I published in 2002 and have since revised and republished twice, once 2005 and once in 2006. Mouse Guard is a comic book written, inked and colored by David Petersen and published by Mark Smylie's Archaia Studio's Press.

    I think that gets at the core differences.
  • That crazy Crane. As cryptic and close to the vest as always :-)
  • :P

    Just to make sure, you revised BW between 2005 and 2006? There's a difference between different copies of BWR, or is it about Monster Burner being between BW and BWR?
  • edited May 2008
    Luke - Am I going to be able to open this game book and have my wife and our 14 and 11 year-old daughters guarding mice in a hour, two hours? (I've never played Burning Wheel or Burning Empire)

    Thanks!
  • Posted By: Thunder_God:P

    Just to make sure, you revised BW between 2005 and 2006? There's a difference between different copies of BWR, or is it about Monster Burner being between BW and BWR?
    I don't understand this question, but I think you're asking for the publishing history of Burning Wheel. Burning Wheel Classic published in 2002 (but interestingly won best game of 2003). Burning Wheel Revised published in 2005. Burning Empires (aka Burning Wheel 3.0) published in 2006.
    Posted By: John PowellLuke - Am I going to be able to open this game book and have my wife and our 14 and 11 year-old daughters guarding mice in a hour, two hours? (I've never played Burning Wheel or Burning Empire)
    Yes.
  • Yes.
    Awesome. In that case, I can't wait.
  • Wait, what about the strong rewards for long term play and deep investment?
  • Jesus. I had no idea this was happening.

    I am now indecently excited.
  • Sorry, I wasn't planning on taking over your thread, Luke. But since you asked... Our play group doesn't mind there being rewards for it as long as the game doesn't require it for fun to happen. Like TSOY Keys and Agon's Fate track only really make sense in long-term play with investment, but the games still function pretty well without them. Lately, I've had more trouble with In a Wicked Age because the We Owe List is so central to play and mainly a long-term thing, but Vincent and some other folks game me some advice for getting around that. If I can run Mouse Guard for folks as a one-shot, with not a lot of investment in learning or mastering the details of the rules, but just sort of going along with things... and it really works well, then great. We might decide to play it again and then, after that, consider a real arc or more long-term play. But our standard practice, I guess, is to give things a go as a one-shot and then decide whether we like them enough to keep playing, like renewing a pilot for a full season or picking up an issue of a comic before subscribing to it.
  • Just curious, have you one-shotted D&D without using experience points?
  • No, but I can imagine doing so.
  • So the currency cycles for Agon and Shadow are disposable, but D&D's is not.

    And Burning Wheel's currency cycle is apparently so monstrous that it cannot be disregarded or backgrounded for the sake of a one-shot.

    I know there's a host of other reasons why you don't play Burning Wheel and I'm fine with that. I'm just trying to point out that I think your line of reasoning here is flawed. I think there are other wants, needs, prejudices and biases at stake.

    I also think those same wants, needs, prejudices and biases will emerge when confronted with just about any game I design. At their core, they're all the same.
  • And I've been so good about not buying rpgs. I guess this will have to be my one and only new rpg purchase this year.
  • will it be available as PDF?
  • Posted By: Jonathan WaltonNo, but I can imagine doing so.
    You hand out XP during D&D one-shots? Why?
  • Posted By: buzzYou hand out XP during D&D one-shots? Why?
    How else will you know who won? Sheesh.

    p.
  • Guys, Jonathan was saying that he can imagine playing a one-shot D&D game without XP.
  • Posted By: John HarperGuys, Jonathan was saying that hecanimagine playing a one-shot D&D gamewithoutXP.
    Right. I just didn't understand why one would run a D&D one-shot with XP.

    I don't mean to jump on Jonathan. I'm just curious. Granted, now I know that he's taking a break from forums.
  • All the other doom aside, the thing I found most interesting about the original article was this:
    Mostly it was answering questions. Like, "how does a mouse become a Mouse Guard?" I realized, "Wow, I haven't nailed that down yet." Every day there was a question like that. They wanted to make sure it was going to be accurate. I ended up writing a lot of new material about the world and about the culture. I almost feel foolish that I hadn't come up with how a mouse becomes a mouse guard.
    To me that speaks pretty directly to the differences between my creative process as an author and my creative process as a gamer.
  • Also, saying that you haven't run a one-shot without using XP, isn't the same as saying you have run a one-shot with XP.
  • As a Burning Empires junkie, I am REALLY looking forward to this. Good stuff, Luke and co.
  • I've also played. It's a fantastic game. Character creation is a pleasure. The conflict mechanics are very streamlined yet deep. It retains all my favorite parts of Burning Wheel. Luke definitely put a lot of love into this project. Definitely thumbs up given my own personal preferences.
  • Posted By: jenskotLuke definitely put a lot of love into this project.
    My brain cannot conceive of an alternative.

    Luke: "Yeah, I totally phoned that one in."

    Nope, can't imagine it.
  • Luke: "I kinda scibbled it down on the back of a napkin while playing Warhammer Battle."

    No. Doesn't work either.
  • Posted By: brand_RobinsTo me that speaks pretty directly to the differences between my creative process as an author and my creative process as a gamer.
    I want to say that the situation was similar with BE and Chris Moeller. I even remember a few threads on the BW boards where someone would come up with some scenario idea or vaylen factoid, and Chris would post. "That's a great idea!" :)
  • Luke,

    I'm figuring that you learned some interesting stuff about game design while creating Mouse Guard. Anything you'd be willing to share with us at this point? Me, I'm particularly interested in tips for writing RPGs for a younger audience (which looks like it applies here).
  • I'm not wholly convinced Mouse Guard (the RPG or the graphic novels) is really "for" a younger audience.
  • Paul,
    It's certainly not for you. But I am curious who you think it's for?

    Steve,
    Sorry I missed your question. I learn about game design every time I read a book, watch a movie, give a panel, play a game or design a game. I have no idea if a game like this would appeal to anyone, let alone kids.
  • To me, the mice in Mouse Guard (both RPG and graphic novels) serve all kinds of clever purposes. Like the mice in Maus, it lets you address tough material in an inoffensive package. Frankly I thought the storyline in the first graphic novel was pretty hardcore -- way more than escapism. There's torture, numerous violent martyrdoms, betrayal, etc.

    In game play -- again, assuming not much has changed since the playtest (and are you gonna send your NDA ninjas to cut my throat?) -- I LOVED that playing mice provided a perfect rationale for epic fantasy. Talking mice aside, of course. You don't need dragons when you've got hawks. You don't need dire wolves when you have wolves. Weasels and other icky talking baddies are icky because they're natural enemies of mice in the real world. Even minor weather issues become biblical catastrophes. It just works really well.

    So who is MG for? Youngish adults and older, I think, although children could probably use the mice as a way to dig into more grown-up issues. The appeal is really, really broad.

    p.
  • Them's some astute observations, Mr Beakley. But I don't think that subtext precludes an appeal to a younger audience. I think there's a superficial aspect to Mouse Guard (the comics) that is appealing to a very broad and varied audience.
  • I think Luke's onto something, here. We (as adults) tend to see all the "nasty" things that happen in stories. Kids often don't.

    So, there are multiple "levels" of content, and that's a big plus, isn't it?

    You can sell it to be played by both adults and kids, and (like Luke said in his Fear The Boot interview), can probably be played with satisfaction by adults and kids together, each getting different things back from it.
  • Oh, shoot. I didn't mean to say Mouse Guard is For Adults Only or whatever. I'm just saying that MG isn't exclusively a kiddie title. We're saying the same thing!

    p.
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