Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Theft and Other Demon City Notes

Demon City's Downtime system is basically a re-tool of Jeff's Party Like It's 999.

The money system is basically from FASERIP

Contacts are a combo of FASERIP's Jeff Grubb's Genius Subplot Rule and the way they work in Night's Black Agents.

Combat is 5e's advantage/disadvantage on steroids. I think Jeff may have suggested something along one of these lines once.

The Tarot thing are relatively out of nowhere I think.

Motives instead of classes is more like Vampire than anything else I can think of that I read, but still pretty much out of nowhere.

Calm is obviously like Call of Cthulhu Sanity and probably nobody would want it any other way, though I hope Downtime puts a new spin on it.

Most of the feedback has been too good to be useful. Just a lot of "I like the__! and the__!" which is nice but the sample is kind of self-selected--they're backing it so they're getting what they want. If anybody reading has anything they just thought of, hit me with it.

I'm curious about how long-term play will work. In sunday's D&D game, we thought Agnes Steelheart was just fucking dead the other day until shenanigans restored her and it was clear it hurt. I want to figure out if the stack of rewards and interrelationships Demon City creates will eventually make that happen with a PC that's around long enough, or if you just basically have to choose between horror and that level of attachment.


josh said...

You just reminded me to dig out my old white wolf books. I was looking at one of the character sheets and realized it would be an awesome d6 game with just a few changes.

J. Llloyd Goldshear said...

I've run 5 playtests with my group so far. I've been calling them episodes, since it seems that we've been able to fit 1 or 2 main plot beats neatly into a session, with Downtime occurring at the end. Long term play has worked, though the newer way of rolling CATPACK scores that results in more middle-of-the-road numbers has meant a higher fatality/insanity rate. I'd say our group usually holds onto 2 or 3 of 5 PCs per session (with the exception of Episode 4, in which all PCs survived and nobody went insane). I think through our 5 Episodes, there is 1 PC who is still going strong, with multiple sitting in an asylum, and the rest are dead.

To me it would seem on how often a Demon City campaign is run. If we ended up playing a weekly campaign, I'd argue for more durable PCs, to create more attachment before they're offed. But as is, we only play sporadically, and so the PCs act more as a vehicle for the group's own horror, with less sentimental attachment to the characters. Given the current state of our games, it seems death/insanity is treated as an inevitable, rather than like DnD where it isn't.

J. Llloyd Goldshear said...

** seem to depend

Timothy Paul Schaefer said...

Games that may have something similar to Motives (Maybe? I haven't read your take on it. But food for thought.):
Ghostbusters characters had Goals like money, sex, science, fame, etc. The character got points when they accomplished stuff towards their goal.

Adventure! had Inspiration points that could be gained and used to do certain things depending on the characters' 'facet'.
Intuitive – Quicker reactions and better mental agility
Reflective – Increased patience and bonuses to extended actions
Destructive – Additional damage and concept damage

Hunter: The Reckoning. Characters had a Virtue and a Creed, how they dealt with the supernatural.

Zak Sabbath said...

yeah probly read the game before guessing Paul

Timothy Paul Schaefer said...

Sorry it's not exactly feedback, since I haven't read the rules yet. Things are super tight right now so I haven't contributed to the Patreon. Yeah, I can't even afford three dollars a month, tight.
I was just throwing out some ideas from other games, but it sounds like your game is already pretty well developed.

Maxwell Arnold said...

My personal favorite part of the text has been the material on the real-world elements of investigation: The country, The police, archival-research, the realities of crime, etc. So much so I would be stoked to see some degree mechanical systematization in them, to sort of control, or direct, the action within these milieus. Maybe randomize their more colorful elements. This only because, as one who rests at the very comfortable but unremarkable tippy-top of the intelligence bell-curve, I benefit from the structure of rules to help evoke the inherent weirdness of these institutions while balancing their more mundane atmosphere. To help keep things Bladerunner when my mind naturally wants to up things to Judge Dredd levels, so to speak. As to what this might entail... Welllll... Hmmm...

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