Grappling with the Stars, Crew Missions

September 13, 2007

12:28 PM Elizabeth: I think it sounds completely exciting; I really like the multi-class thing, especially since it can happen before the game even starts.12:29 PM It’s been a while since I played d20, but it seems no one ever starts from scratch in a d20 game anyway, because most pre-existing settings/adventures/etc. are seriously no fun for that.12:31 PM It’s been really interesting to watch you post more stuff about it, because it seems like (and I mean, duh, this is what you’re going for) everything really reinforces the helplessness/connection themes.12:32 PM Plus, when I went through your project listing earlier this week with you, this was the game that I thought sounded coolest. So I’m kind of biased, I guess12:34 PM I’d like to see more about the crews, though. Basically, does it mean a group of people all reach for the same star? Can too many people reach for a star at once? How does the actual travel work?12:39 PM me: ha well, i figure crews may operate differently if you all know the destination you’re headed to, different people may take different routes there12:40 PM i also think there could be slightly different ways to approach travel like, you could take short swings, jumping across a few stars to get to a place or you could pick out the tiny star amidst the heavens and just swing directly to it12:41 PM but the latter holds more risk, because you might grab the wrong thing unless you are really precise and experienced and talented but i generally think that stars are big enough that it doesn’t really matter how many people grab them the star certainly doesn’t care12:44 PM Elizabeth: Okay. So people in a crew may travel separately, but are all going to the same destination? So how do they make sure no one gets lost? me: well, they train people really well and mentor them12:45 PM and then, if people do get lost, there are standard search-and-rescue procedures Elizabeth: ohhhh me: but that doesn’t sound like what you’re asking12:46 PM the sense i get is that you’re advised not to swing unless you 1) know where you’re going or 2) are with a crew that’s guiding you or 3) are training with a mentor Elizabeth: So the crew-ness is a function, essentially, of what happens after transit– the training so that you can travel more safely, etc, as opposed to a function of the travel itself? So basically, even with a crew, when you reach for a star you’re essentially reaching alone? me: well, traveling on your own is really only possible if you totally know the area12:47 PM traveling in unknown territory without a crew is crazy Elizabeth: right me: because it’s super easy to get lost and no one will find you yeah, you always swing along, ultimately that’s part of the alone/togetherness thing12:48 PM Elizabeth: right, I just got that. That’s awesome. me: i’m not sure if you can pull other people along i hadn’t really considered it like, can you grab someone’s hand a
nd reach for a star?
that seems like it would make for bizarre grappling star combat12:49 PM Elizabeth: heee me: where you try to dump people in space that they don’t know but you also run the risk of getting lost yourself, if you’re not careful i kinda like that, actually Elizabeth: You could fling someone into space and they’d have to grab for a star or get lost12:50 PM And they’d have to decide whether reaching for an unfamiliar star is better than just kind of hurtling through the cosmos me: well, i was more thinking that you’d have to pull people along with you, get them off of you, and then swing away Elizabeth: Oooh, yes me: i don’t think you can really hurtle other people, unless its some weird magical ability i like it all being really tactile12:51 PM Elizabeth: Right. I mean, it’s essentially built around this one really compelling sensory image me: that also means that, if someone’s trying to get away, you could tackle them and go with them, or try to keep their fingers from grabbing the right star but, also, dangerous Elizabeth: right
me: the star-wrestling/aikido think sounds potentially very cool, and makes combat very specific and limited, which is what i want and it de-incentivizes it12:54 PM because you could easily end up very, very lost hmm, maybe, if characters run the risk of being lost in a semi-permanent way, there needs to be a way to control multiple characters12:55 PM Elizabeth: Which makes it rare and high-stakes and dramatic, which is my favorite kind of combat me: right it’s like combat in Riddle of Steel12:56 PM but is also generally non-lethal, but potentially life- and soul-destroying, which is almost worse Elizabeth: I like the idea of characters who were separated and ended up on entirely different sides of the universe trying to find each other again– either due to THIRST FOR VENGEANCE or family or love or whatever12:58 PM but that doesn’t sound like the kind of scenario which would really lend itself to one person controlling multiple characters, does it? I mean, in that case it’d be kind of like trying to tickle yourself1:00 PM me: right i definitely think the Lost Lovers theme is going to be big as is the Lost Family1:01 PM or Lost Enemies thing so many people get lost some of them are bound to include people you care about maybe there’s some way for players whose characters are lost to keep playing until their characters reappear?1:02 PM but more off-screen? so the spotlight is mainly on the crew Elizabeth: Right me: but they could have more GMy powers or something Elizabeth: Maybe when you’re lost, you play someone important to another crew member?1:03 PM Tangentially, maybe in flashbacks or just how it affects the crew member’s mindset me: right, you could play major NPCs or something and then, you could ultimately decide to take on an NPC and have your character stay lost or just become an NPC themselves if they return Elizabeth: I like that a lot!1:05 PM Man, lost love and lost family are great, right, but the lost enemy thing is really compelling to me1:06 PM Because the risk of losing yourself to find someone you love is like, almost a no-brainer, but the idea of risking losing yourself to punish someone is really conflicted and, I don’t know I guess you’d have to be careful not to get all Wolverine-y though. 😉1:11 PM me: ha well, you could put a crew together specifically to track down someone you all hate maybe one major part of character creation is deciding what the purposes of your crew are1:12 PM and then, if you achieve them or give up on them, you’ll have to find new reasons to stay together or else go off to join other crews1:13 PM Elizabeth: And that could lead to different games with the same characters; game one could be a lost family game, and then later you could get the family as a crew to track down the person that separated them, etc1:14 PM Without it all having to be one super-long never ending game without a conclusion 🙂1:16 PM me: right crews have purposes gives you concrete goals i was talking a bit with Justin about allowing for short 3-session arcs and then longer campaigns1:17 PM so you have punctuated stopping places Elizabeth: That kind of flexibility is pretty hot

Just when you need detailed grappling rules…
All About Grappling (Part One) by Skip Williams
All About Grappling (Part Two)
All About Grappling (Part Three)
All About Grappling (Part Four)

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