Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Shadow Legion: Madness in the Dark

In this session +Ron Frazier, +Brian Boring, +Frank Falkenberg+Sharif Abed, and I got together to play our most tense session yet! Our heroes decide to board the Sukar vessel in search of the secret to Sukar jump tech. Commander Kevik manages to successfully make an ad-hock dock with the vessel despite being hopped up on morphine. Inside the air is thin and there is no light anywhere. Ginko decides to poke around and they almost activate a bunch of Sukar hunter/killer robots. they manage to reprogram them and take them as allies in the coming conflicts. During a loud and long discussion of what to do next they hear the scream of the Sukar, which shakes them up a bit, especially the group of marines they brought with them. what follows is a tough couple of fights in which the commander gets many of his marines killed. This leads him to seek and end quickly and he rushes off with G'Lex to the engine room, leaving Ginko and Alric to fend for themselves. Both groups get into a conflict. It ends with them coming together and all the air on the ship being vented. We ended with the Sukar ship heading toward the main fleet and the heroes only having a twenty minute supply of air.

Problems I see in the setting and rules
 The Esp issue: when I originally wrote up Psi I had not played with it much and as such I wrote the description without thinking too much about how it would work. Here is the original description of Esp as I saw it:
The Esp skill allows for reading of minds, seeing the past, and seeing possible futures. the skill is for Overcome Actions to gain information and Create advantage actions to use your sixth sense against others or for yourself.
See I saw it as working a lot like Psychic powers in other fiction. The problem is the seeing the future part. This cannot be resisted by anyone and allows for easy creation of really useful and powerful aspects without any way to defend against it. the more I play the less it fits how I see Esp working. I would love for esp to relate to the connections between minds. this would have very interesting ramifications when the Halo gets built and Telekinesis only works on those with a biological mind. I really dig that idea more and more as the campaign goes on. I think in the future I will be removing the temporal aspects to Esp. It will only be for mind reading and the like. Maybe their could be a type of Halo that allows for temporal effects(again only when dealing with organic minds).

Skill issues: OK, I am going to talk about an issue I have noticed in EVERY game of Fate I have played so far. Players tend to work their narrative asses off in order to keep problems in their top three skills. If it goes below that they start to get antsy, upset, and nervous. I don't know how to fix this problem. Some might not even think this is a problem. I do. I see it as the thing that eats up the most time and takes me out of the game whenever it happens. For example, today Brian wanted to use technology to defend against a mental attack. we ended up debating this for maybe thirty seconds, and it took me right out of the game. Now I do not see this as a problem with Brian's style of play so much as a piece of a larger issue. This issue...I see no real solution to. It bugs me. Maybe I should go with something like Diaspora's skill use rules where you can only use a skill once in a scene or something.

Education and technology each need to be split into two skills each as they tend to be overused. I would like to split technology into the engineering end of things and the programming or systems use side of things. Not sure what to call those skills either. With Education I would like to split it as well, but I have no idea how to do it. Any suggestions on this would be very useful.

Here is the recording of play, if you would like to watch it:

1 comment:

  1. This is a fun series, so people wanting to watch it shouldn't feel weird. ;)

    The focusing on apex skills is inherent to players. Luckily, in FATE, compels can get'em to use those Fair and Average skills.

    In their defense, you did allow them to justify using almost any skill to defend against the surprise +9 Mental Attack when Grit is the actual defender - sort of an apology? I think the player anxiety just came from the higher than normal stakes.

    For the super skills - I'd try splitting Tech into Fabrication and Systems. Education into History and Sciences.