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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:58 am 
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Ian.Plumb wrote:
In Actor Stance the joy is in the Exploration of the gaming environment, seeing the place and situations through your character's eyes, reacting to people and events in the manner you believe your character would if he was really there.
Just a side note. As with GNS misses the turkuist/immersion aspect, I feel that Actor/Author/Director/Pawn Stances also fail to model what my group does in gaming.

Ian.Plumb wrote:
In this style there is a tendency to hang on to characters for a long time. Sometimes to the point where the character becomes, in fact, a caricature.
Could you elaborate? I mean, what has this to do with the amount of time you play a character? As I intended Itzcoatl to be a powerful schemer and playing him has been but a row of failures, I totally see him as a caricature. Heck, even to the point that I spent Drama to further have him go to the path of failures by reinforcing Layannas position by making the servitors to be awed by the statue. And btw, I deliberately didn't take that Drama out of his Destiny dice, as I fully expect Michael to rule Itzcoatl's Destiny dice as penalty dice for avoiding losing his eyes.

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 11:09 am 
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Ian.Plumb wrote:
In this style there is a tendency to hang on to characters for a long time. Sometimes to the point where the character becomes, in fact, a caricature.


higgins wrote:
Could you elaborate?


Sure. When a character starts out in many mainstream RPGs their character sheet is defined but their personality isn't (necessarily). We know what they are but not really who they are.

After a few games of bouncing round the gaming environment with the other PCs a few traits will develop. Everyone, including the player, gets to know the character.

Time goes by. More scenarios are played, often by exactly the same player characters. Everyone is behaving "in-character" or in Actor Stance. The quality of play produced by the player is often determined by how well they are deemed to have stayed in character. This in turn requires an ever tighter definition of what that character's traits might be. Doing something unexpected may well be seen as doing something out-of-character -- doing something because the player wanted to do it, not because it would have been what the character would have done if presented with the same situation, the same circumstances.

From my perspective the longer such a character is played in this way the greater the risk that the character becomes a caricature of itself. The definition of the character is so tight, so well known to everyone at the table, that the character could be run by anyone there with a very high chance that the same decisions would have been taken if the player had made those decisions.

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 12:18 pm 
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Ah, you meant caricature as too tight definition, while I thought you meant caricature as parody. :oops: I also meant parody when speaking of Itzcoatl, and in that light my above post probably makes a lot more sense to you now as we've cleared another misinterpretation. Boy, we two have a talent for those. :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 12:53 pm 
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Ian, the only flaw I see in your reasoning is that seems to lack Character Growth... If by the end of 5 sessions everyone "knows" your Character, that's cool, by the end of 5 Chapters in a novel everyone pretty much knows the Character. But if by the end of the Book your Character is the same as he was in Chapter 5 then you've lacked growth. By the end of the series he will again have changed significantly.

Also, is your veiw of such longstanding characters a positive or negative one? Because for me atleast I see it as extremely Postitive. This alows all the members of the group to fully grasp the main Characters in the Story which then allows them to "write" a better story for those Characters. If the GM really knows the Characters then he also really knows the kind of scenarios that are important to them, and at the same time can cause great conflicts for them both internally (in the hearts and minds of the Characters) and externally (the Setting at large). I fail to see how this could be a bad thing... ever? What are your thoughts on it?

Cheers!

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 10:45 pm 
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Crow Caller wrote:
Also, is your veiw of such longstanding characters a positive or negative one? Because for me atleast I see it as extremely Postitive. This alows all the members of the group to fully grasp the main Characters in the Story which then allows them to "write" a better story for those Characters. If the GM really knows the Characters then he also really knows the kind of scenarios that are important to them, and at the same time can cause great conflicts for them both internally (in the hearts and minds of the Characters) and externally (the Setting at large). I fail to see how this could be a bad thing... ever? What are your thoughts on it?


Let's take this up elsewhere... The Actual Play thread is very clogged!

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:31 am 
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Sorry, folks, been unexpectedly busy yesterday. Now on with the show!

Itzcoatl. The square in front of Pac Utal’s townhouse.

Lying on his kness, his face buried in his hands, eyes shut tight, Itzcoatl hears the shuffling of feet and the soft clearing of throats that gives away the warriors’ uneases and insecurity at seeing the priests prostrate themselves for apparently no reason. He also hears the soft tread of the Servitor’s cork-soles. Peering through his fingers, Itzcoatl sees the one-eyed Servitor stoop over the fallen one who spasms and trembles on the floor, not unlike Pac Utal only moments before.

The he lies very still.

The one-eyed Servitor replaces the mask over the divine features, then he speaks: “Rise”, he says with a voice that struggles to exude unshaken confidence, but the shock and insecurity in it is all too plain.

The one surviving Servitor looks about himself imperiously, his back very stiff, his masked head held high. A sweep of his hand that seems grand but behind which Itzcoatl can see the deliberate effort to have it appear so, indicates the fallen Servitor: “A few priests – lift him back into the palanquin. We shall return to the temple. Herd everybody who has been in the house along, and take everything along everything of notice. And make haste.”

After these words, the Servitor folds his tall frame into Layanna’s palanquin while high priest Ixcal gives direction to place the dead Servitor with the fused wrists carefully into the palanquin belonging to Itzcoatl.

“Back to the temple – immediately”, the Servitor’s voice comes from the palanquin, and the train of priests and warriors and prisoners, all of them doomed, sets into motion.


Higgins, Itzcoatl can suspect that the Servitor might well be in such a hurry because he is afraid of his current retinue turning against him – nobody but the priests realize this, but they are all doomed men, doomed to either death or being blinded. In the temple, there are many, many wariors and priests who are not threatened by having seen a divine face – here, the Servitor can sequester himself, safely surrounded by those who will carry out his orders without question.

Do you want Itzcoal to act in some way before coming back to the temple? There are none of Itzcoatl’s special retainer’s present (they are all busy with Layanna), but Itzcoatl has a high priest’s authority. Then there is of course also pious old Ixcal, who is also a high priest and seems resigned to what is going to happen.

Crow Caller, as Ghost Jaguar has spent quite some time travelling to the Servitor and then learning how to use the Shoatli, Ghost Jaguar’s story line has advanced past the others’, and you’ll have to wait a bit how the death of the Servitor is resolved to see how things are when Ghost Jaguar re-emerges from the underground.

If you just want people to bow (just bow?) to Ghost Jaguar, that costs no Drama. And yes, you can swap Oath and Vow; I was about to suggest the same myself.

And if you’d like Itzcoatl to regain the Shoatli then set your mind to work out events you could introduce to bring this about.

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 11:23 am 
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Grettir wrote:
Crow Caller, as Ghost Jaguar has spent quite some time travelling to the Servitor and then learning how to use the Shoatli, Ghost Jaguar’s story line has advanced past the others’, and you’ll have to wait a bit how the death of the Servitor is resolved to see how things are when Ghost Jaguar re-emerges from the underground.


Sweet I'll just kick back and enjoy the show for now.

Quote:
If you just want people to bow (just bow?) to Ghost Jaguar, that costs no Drama.


Yeah, I want it to be able to force people to bow (against their will and they are well aware that it is against their will) just like a peasant would bow if a god showed up.

Quote:
And yes, you can swap Oath and Vow; I was about to suggest the same myself.


Cool, thanks. Now, any suggestions lol.

Quote:
And if you’d like Itzcoatl to regain the Shoatli then set your mind to work out events you could introduce to bring this about.


Sure thing. I think it would be cool if Itzcoatl did eventualy regain the Shoatl and if this lead to darker times than anyone had foreseen. Higgins you start thinking about cool ways of regaining it and what Itzcoatl could do with it to propel the story to a grand climatic event!

Heck I think it'd be great if Itzcoatl barely manages to get the Shoatl back (picture him crawling on his hands and knees like a dog, plucking the shoatl off of Ghost's corpse) only for him to turn around to examine it and see the arrival of the gods, they descend upon him and enslave him. Something like that would be cool imo :P

Cheers!

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 2:43 pm 
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Crow Caller wrote:
Grettir wrote:
And yes, you can swap Oath and Vow; I was about to suggest the same myself.
Cool, thanks. Now, any suggestions lol.

Well, I suggest you don't feel bound to Oath and Vow. Neither has as yet figured in the game, so it's totally ok if you replace them with something completely different.

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:06 pm 
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Itzcoatl. The square in front of Pac Utal’s townhouse.

As the train of people starts to move, Itzcoatl closes up to Ixcal. "What a magnificent sight!" he exclaims as if addressing Ixcal, but speaking loudly enough for the rest of the company to hear. "I am thrilled to see that not even a single soul here flinched after realising that seeing the face of a Servitor means facing certain death at the hands of another..."

Having said that, restlessness and shock starts to spread among the herded people very quickly. The pious Ixcal looks toward Itzcoatl, his eyes filled with utter horror and confusion. Is Itzcoatl really turned as pious... No, he's inducing panic here... and undermining them all, including himself!

As the paniced crowd starts to scatter and flee, it is a group of organised and trained guards who manage to suppress their fears and take initiative by closing upon Itzcoatl's palanquin -- the high priest has identified the main threat originating from there.


Did Itzcoatl recognise the poison Pac used by its effects?

Ugh, I edited to add a bit more Director Stance than I'm used to.

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:33 pm 
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higgins wrote:
Did Itzcoatl recognise the poison Pac used by its effects?

Roll MA/Herbalism. As I don’t know what for it would be good for Itzcoatl to identify the poison, I can’t tell you what, if any, SAs apply; I trust you to apply yourself the fitting SAs to the roll. 1 success means that Itzcoatl recognizes without a doubt that it was poison and not something supernatural that slew the Servitor; 2 successes means that he can identify the poison; 3+ successes mean that he is somehow familiar with it.

Also, as you intend to kill or take hostage the last Servitor, the Drama for having the Servitors be well disposed towards the statue does not apply; I don’t know wether you have already spent it or not, but if you have, consider it unspent.

On the other hand, determining as you did that Itzcoatl’s attempt to incite the guards to storm the palanquin will cost you 1 Drama if you want to have it succeed so smoothly. Alternatively, you can roll Social/Orate with the Drive for power and the hate-Passion as bonus dice (remember that “unspent” SA-point from the statue); you would have to beat Ixcal’s roll of Social/Leadership, commanding the lynch mob to stop. Here it is (5 dice, TN 5):
[dice]cybwzxjxsa[/dice]
[dice]igjgjlhvgg[/dice]
[dice]lwckpgdbbg[/dice]
[dice]ddzbmxundc[/dice]
[dice]mjdxqyexyq[/dice]

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:52 pm 
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It's a close call, but I'll go for a roll.
Soc 7+2 vs. Orate 6
[dice]almeyoxtpx[/dice]
[dice]wusjktxsyk[/dice]
[dice]kxngympezq[/dice]
[dice]lvpasjpqhm[/dice]
[dice]awvutnseyd[/dice]
[dice]mkayaeyqvj[/dice]
[dice]lkeuzvclgd[/dice]
[dice]bxbppgotia[/dice]
[dice]izdmxuihft[/dice]

MA 5+0 vs. Herbalism 6
[dice]korfqdmtln[/dice]
[dice]mdgtrzbsdj[/dice]
[dice]gwoaewgynr[/dice]
[dice]exchjwsxmf[/dice]
[dice]syssakvjcc[/dice]

Four x5.. :shock: oh well.. that's my luck.

Edit: Ugh, Itzcoatl has really gone all out now... can he Intimidate Ixctal into backing down from the command using one of his snakes? Like.. holding his arm tight and then exposing a snake from the other sleeve? Heck, if that helps the mob to go panic and all, he'll try to kill Ixctal with his snake (but not throwing it as it's too visible as he doesn't want to be noticed doing this).

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:12 pm 
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Ok, Itzcoatl is familiar with the poison used by Pac Utal – and you get a check to Herbalism.

Concerning your Orate – you forgot 1 die! I reminded you that you traded the 1 point of power-Drive for 1 Drama (for the statue), but that this was premature and that, if you rolled, you should not forget that your Drive was at 3, not 2. So roll this one more die – if it’s 6+, all’s well.

What happened is this: Itzcoatl fanned the guards’ fear with a few powerful words and ordered them to charge the palanquin (succesful Orate). Ixcal shrieked commands for the guards to stand down (Leadership). If you don’t get the one more success, Ixcal narrowly managed to have the guards stand down; if you get it, he narrowly failed to. In either case, you get a check to Itzcoatl’s Orate skill, and the guards will be divided in their loyalties, at a ratio of aout 2:1 – the question is only wether Itzcoatl or Ixcal controls the larger faction.

But don’t forget that Itzcoatl has Luck – even if you ail the roll of the one more die, all you need to do is buy the one more success, and Itzcoatl has beaten Ixcal.

Either way, Itzcoatl can use the snake, wether to threaten or to actually kill – Ixcal’ standing close to Itzcoatl, and he’s a frail old man.

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:19 pm 
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LMAO!!! You've got to have the worst luck with dice I've ever seen! Itzcoatl must have used up all his luck before the game started getting to his position and holding it, cause at this rate by midnight he'll have no eyes, no ears and no tounge... perhaps no head? LOL.

On the up side though, atleast your rolls can't get worse!

EDIT: Hate to throw a spanner in the works and make life even harder for poor old Itzy, but won't Higgins need 2 more successes?

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:28 pm 
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Grettir wrote:
Concerning your Orate – you forgot 1 die! I reminded you that you traded the 1 point of power-Drive for 1 Drama (for the statue), but that this was premature and that, if you rolled, you should not forget that your Drive was at 3, not 2.
Did I miss you awarding Itzcoatl a drive to power SA? It's been at 2 from the start (before I spent the Drama from it) and hate passion has always been at 0... now if the fate SA were included... I was planning to use one of the masks (preferably gods mask, but only one unpoisoned servitors mask is available here right now) and have some kind of chemical reaction happen to it when Itz straps it on... :twisted: ...but that's just an idea I had (the mask connecting to his nerves and giving him some kind of heat vision if he has lost his eyes meanwhile, but I'm getting too ahead) and I'm open to suggestion how Itzcoatl's destiny might come to be.

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- Lord Petyr Baelish, A Game of Thrones


Last edited by higgins on Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Actual Play!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:56 pm 
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Crow Caller (and higgins), you are right, Itzcoatl needs 2 more successes, not 1.

Higins, you are right, I mixed things with your SAs up. So you’ve got no more dice, and even with your 1 Luck, Itzcoatl’s screwed…

Itzcoatl. The square in front of Pac Ual’s house.

The guards’ terror at realizing what is about to happen to them makes way for a frenzied panic into which they are whipped by Itzcoatl’s words. Ixcal stares incredulously as the first temple warriors shout for the Servitor’s blood, and then start to rush for his palanquin.

“Hold it!”, the old high priest cries out. “Blasphemers! How dare you lift your hands against a holy one, against the very messengers of the gods! The gods will smite you and punish all of Ozomatli for your sacrilege!”

Ixcal has been high priest for longer than some of the present warriors have been alive, and heeding his words has become second nature to the men, but even so his voice fails to stop all of the guardsmen – a handful presses on, intent on seeing the Servitor slain.

“Stop the blasphemers!”, Ixcal cries out again. “They will doom all of Ozomatli!”


Ok, an unarmed struggle is now ensuing. There are about two dozen guards present, but only a third of them is howling for the Servitor’s blood, the others stay true to their in-bred devotion and lifelong habit of serving the gods; this majority will quickly overpower the would-be Servitor-slayers.

In addition, there are about twenty priests and acolytes present and about as many slaves to carry the palanquins and the litter, and about ten craftsmen and servants from Pac Utal’s household. Commander Nahuatec is amid his men, trying to restore order, but Ixcal is only a few short steps from Itzcoatl.

What’s it gonna be now?

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