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[meta] Game Master Me

Posted in: Advice/Tools,Fluff,Serenity by Ariel on May 14, 2010

We’ve been rotating out our Game Master duties. Between Angel and Michelle, they kept us rocking and rolling for two and a half years with Shackled City, so it was a great chance to learn a new system and give everyone a chance to be at the helm.

With Legos as our mainstays for props, I got busy early for my first night GMing. Our adventure starts in a little backwater world called Greenleaf. Known for its wine and its herbs, the planet exports a lot of stuff, but it’s not a destination.

The call to adventure happens in the one inn in the main town of Vineyard. I used this as my base for the night’s adventure.

It’s a busy place called the Noble Grape, but the locals call it the Sour Grape because Frida, the owner is not known for her personal charm. As you’d expect for the only inn in town, it’s a busy place with the requisite piano player in the far left corner and a cat who sits and watches from the safety of the bar. Might not be what you call sanitary, but are you going to be the one to say that to Frida?

The inn setting gave me a chance to try to win over my charges as I began my chapter of the Divas in Space saga. How? With food, of course! I’m not the best GM, not yet anyway, but I can cook.

I made some bread, bought a couple of kinds of cheese and some apples. Angel was kind enough to provide the wine and everyone chipped in with other foods. Olivia, who has joined our merry band, had some wonderful grapes that went perfectly with the meal.

Taj went crazy and brought along feta, blue and brie. It was a cheese extravaganza.

The game system is easy in many ways, especially compared to D&D, but I’m still struggling with how to rate a challenge check.

Sure some things are easy. Like finding a secret button that unlocks a cache of diamonds would be crazy hard. No prob. But what about avoiding an enemy? Or bluffing a police officer? I guess the challenge rating almost depends on the PC’s ability. Picking a lock would be hard for Michelle’s character but maybe not for Taj’s. Hmm…. food for thought.

Speaking of that, maybe I should make muffins for next week. I want to keep those Divas happy!

1 Comment

  1. speaking from D&D experience, challenge ratings are intrinsic to the task itself. This means opening a lock has a certain difficulty depending on the lock. Certain characters are going to be better able to roll high and get that lock open. But the difficulty rating doesn’t change depending on who’s trying to open it.

    Certainly, you can add to the difficulty, but that would depend on circumstances, and those circumstances could depend on the character. Negotiating a contract has a difficulty associated with the task. Brigid has a high attribute score for willpower, she has influence as a skill, with extra skill ratings in bureaucracy, so she should be able to succeed easily. However, she also has a complication of being impatient with people who don’t see the need to help the children and are stingy with money. This could raise the difficulty of the task _for her_ to such a degree that it might be better to let someone else give it a try. The challenge rating for those people trying would remain the basic rating.

    Or Swei could have past experience with diffusing a bomb that leaves her unable to diffuse a bomb that reminds her of the experience that left her deaf. The challenge rating is raised by a circumstance just for her.

    Long post. I hope this makes sense. We can talk about it as a group.

    Comment by Dyskko — May 28, 2010 @ 6:53 am

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