Vanguard: Shrine of the Aegis (AKA I want to be more like John Harper)

That John Harper is stealing from me. First he steals my idea for a boy band of thirty-somethings. Then he steals my idea for wearing black hats and having a goatee. The last straw is when he steals my idea for making cool game stuff.

So I'm stealing back. After aeons of trying to get a space adventure game to work, I'm taking the patented Jonathan-Walton-Thinks-It's-Cool approach and offering up a probably almost ready to play game-adventure-scenario-document thingy.

Besides, all this cool art I got from Bill Mudron, Leo Lingas and other folks is just sitting on my hard drive, and that makes me sad. So please enjoy.

image

See how I made like that kind of page spread thingy? Just like John. Cool, huh?

I ordered my Obey hat this morning. Now to get coffee and practice some aikido.

Comments

  • Posted By: Matt Wilsonthe patented Jonathan-Walton-Thinks-It's-Cool approach
    Since it's patented, I guess I'll have to sue you now. Y'know, for being cool.

    8-page games are the new short-brimmed, quazi-revolutionary hats (frex: Luke, Malcolm, Kevin) as far as the indie games scene is concerned.
  • In order to sue you must provide the court with an actual play post that demonstrates how much fun you had.
  • Posted By: Matt WilsonSee how I made like that kind of page spread thingy? Just like John. Cool, huh?
    Nah, John put drop shadows on his preview pages.
  • Posted By: Jonathan WaltonSince it's patented, I guess I'll have to sue you now. Y'know, for being cool.
    He didn't say it's patented by you. And I really hope it's not, cuz that would be silly. Only you could legally use the approach of doing stuff you think is cool? That's not nearly as useful. :)
  • Posted By: DeBracyPosted By: Matt WilsonSee how I made like that kind of page spread thingy? Just like John. Cool, huh?
    Nah, John put drop shadows on his preview pages.

    I don't know what you're suggesting. My pages have drop shadows on them. They always have. I would never lie.
  • Oh, my bad. I guess I wasn't really looking. Or rather; I was blinded by the elegance of your layout! It looks really good, especially the PCs. I really understand why you'd want to share the art too!
  • First of all: looks cool.

    Second: That John Harper! Last week he couldn't make our Wednesday gaming session, so after our game of MLWM we ended up having a quick "Man, John is just too awesome" session. Trying to run anything for people who were introduced to story games with Lady Blackbird (run by John) is tough.
  • Very nice, Matt. The mechanics are simple and tight. I also like that you called it a "playset".

    Now I must go plot the destruction of everyone who is more like John Harper than I am. Damn you all.
  • Matt, this is awesome. I can't wait to play it.
  • I like scale, consequences and hazard. The only things missing are Mouse Guard, Burning Empires, and my mom from the influences list, adding border=0 to you HTML image tag above and drop shadows!

    I'd like more detail on rolling for allies. Give it to me!!!
  • The idea behind allies is that you will face threats you can't handle on your own. To stop the incoming pirate horde, say, you need more than your crappy little ship. You kind of need a horde of your own. But it's not like the galaxy is filled with philanthropist hordes sitting around waiting to help you out.

    What's missing, probably, is this game's equivalent of getting +2 for the high ground. Get +2 to your roll to convince guys to help you if you set up the fiction in a way that supports it. The obvious thing is fulfilling their wants and needs. "I have brought you the golden fleece. Now get in your ships and help me stop this horde."

    This particular adventure playset probably doesn't include a big enough environment to address allies, but I think that's okay for purposes of trying out everything else. Allies fit better within a campaign kind of structure. I might create a follow-up adventure with a broader environment and multiple factions for the GM to draw upon, in order to test out allies.
  • Playset is such a nice word. I hope it spreads. I like the writing too. Simple and to the point.
  • Posted By: No Love OrchestraPlayset is such a nice word. I hope it spreads. I like the writing too. Simple and to the point.
    Thanks!
  • edited April 2009
    This is great. The vocations (from Galactic?) and equipment work well enough to create a strong sense of character without many specific details, which the players can fill in depending on how they interpret the picture, one-sentence description, and so on. That leaves a good amount of room for making the character my own.
  • Really the whole thing is from Galactic. And thanks!
  • Posted By: Matt WilsonGalactic
    Galactic is coming out when? Hmm?
  • Posted By: buzzGalactic is coming out when? Hmm?
    Didn't you see the link above? Pictures and everything.
  • Hey Matt: I'm about to print this and put it in ye olde gaming bag of instant fun. But my spidey sense tells me you are about to update the draft. Yes?
  • Posted By: John HarperHey Matt: I'm about to print this and put it in ye olde gaming bag of instant fun. But my spidey sense tells me you are about to update the draft. Yes?
    Actually yes. Just a tiny update though, already done. Any other updates will show up in Vaults of the Drift.
  • edited April 2009
    I have a mechanics question! Sort of. I think I know the answer, but hey, Internet forum!

    Let's say Pranav is trying to cut a deal with an Eastern Rim arms dealer for some explosives. The guy is being greedy, so I say, "Pranav casually rests his hand on his pistol belt. 'We don't have time for this crap, Keller,' he says. I'm rolling Diplomat, Warrior, and Pistol."

    Now, Shannon, playing Iona, goes, "Yeah! And I lean in behind him, giving Keller a stone cold look, like, 'you better take this deal while you can,' kind of thing. I help him with Warrior."

    So, everyone rolls. We have four dice bouncing around now (3 from Pranav and 1 from Iona) and we need one success. Let's say we get it. Win! But, the other three dice fail. Now what?

    Do we have:
    1. Three new consequences to deal with -or-
    2. One new consequence

    In other words, do you get a consequence if *any* dice fail, or do you get a consequence for *each* die that fails? The wording in the rules can be read either way, I think. Which is fine, actually. My own preference would be for #2, above, because it means less work for the GM.
  • Every die you add should add the possibility of its own problem. The GM can just impair stuff if he or she doesn't want to try and name three things.

    A possible third choice I didn't list is to give the GM free Hazard for a follow-up threat. In any case, every die has a potential cost.

    So don't dogpile on a roll unless you're prepared (some might say eager) for trouble (some might say fun).
  • Trouble = fun. This is totally my motto.

    I like being able to take Hazard instead, as the GM. Thinking up three or more good consequences on the fly will annoy me, so flexibility is good. When I have good ideas, bam! When I don't, I take Hazard. Cool.
  • Looks cool! Here's a suggestion: put an area on the character sheets to record consequences.

    Between you and Harper, I'm now thinking about making my own mini-game/playset thingy.
  • Posted By: Matt WilsonDidn't you see the link above? Pictures and everything.
    Not good enough. I want the whole shebang!
  • Posted By: buzzPosted By: Matt WilsonDidn't you see the link above? Pictures and everything.
    Not good enough. I want the whole shebang!

    Hold your breath and I'll tell you when it's done.
  • Posted By: John PowellLooks cool! Here's a suggestion: put an area on the character sheets to record consequences.
    Hey, I'm listening but not understanding why. What would you want to write down? Would it just be a record of bad stuff that happened in play?
  • edited June 2009
    Posted By: Matt Wilson

    Any other updates will show up in Vaults of the Drift.
    What is Vaults of the Drift?

    The document includes no rules for how impairments get removed. How does that happen?
  • Posted By: demiurgeastarothThe document includes no rules for how impairments get removed. How does that happen?
    Hi Darren. It says how on the character sheets. Basically do it like you'd refresh pools in TSOY.
  • Oh yes, so it does. I read those sheets to be sure it wasn't there, too.

    It's a little vague though what a character development scene is. Who decides whether a scene qualifies, and how?
  • I do.

    Please email me texts of all your character development scenes that I may judge them.
  • Posted By: Brand_RobinsI do.

    Please email me texts of all your character development scenes that I may judge them.
    What's your home phone number? I'll put that in the next draft.

    Darren: I'd look at it as the whole purpose of that scene. Like, "I want some down time for my guy."

    I might totally ditch this idea. We'll see how quickly Brand responds to people.
  • edited June 2009
    Edit: drat - Matt posted before me.
    Hmmm. What happens when you go on holiday? I was hoping for something a little faster. If I were a suspicious sort, I might think that this rule was created to force playtesters to automatically create actual play reports.
  • You guys are funnier than I am. This is not fair.

    Or, more seriously, I'd probably not take out the development scene, but give a few short rules for what constitutes a development scene. The "I want downtime" is a good start, but I think it could also serve a couple of other story functions. Things like:

    1) Reflect on a previous scene, especially one in which the PCs were at odds
    2) Add a minutia/detail to the character or ship's background. ("I've seen the Aegis before, you know... it was the last time I saw my mother." Or "The Kaamat-Bao is a tricky beast, it was always Quantum Mechanics worst on reliability lists. We can't fix it without a Jive-Henderson Pump... which luckily I got from that guy that I was banging in the engine room when YOU WALKED IN ON US!")
    3) Have a monologue or soliloquy (for anime style games) or a scene blocked out to demonstrate some aspect of the character's emotional state (all those scenes in Battlestar with Apollo floating in space, or the mechanic dude thinking about killing himself, or Tigh looking at his booze, or Baltar... no fuck Baltar, I hate that guy.)
    4) Add something to the game that will entertain the other players for shits and giggles ("Fight at the bar!" or "Parnav is showering and all wet and sexy when one of you two walks in on him and hilarious tension results!")
  • All Wet & Sexy: The Game of The Everyday Life of Brand Robins
  • edited June 2009
    It's because he lives in Toronto and has to make up for all the strip clubs being in Montreal.
  • And Vancouver.

    Actually, most of the wet ones are in Vancouver.
  • Along with the raincoats.
  • Those aren't strip clubs, Brand -- they're yoga studios.

    And it's clearly no coincidence that the only thing separating 'playset' and 'playtest' is a single consonant.
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