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Nick Pilon
Python developer, geek, and gamer.
Python developer, geek, and gamer.
Nick's posts

Gods of the Fall is read!

It's an interesting attempt at demigod play that aims somewhere between D&D and Exalted in terms of power scale and strangeness. The setting is mostly conventional fantasy but blown up really well, with evil wizards and slavery and a literal dark age. It's nice and specific too; lots of named characters with detailed agendas and dark secrets all nicely spelled out. Everything is very gameable. It does, unfortunately, hit the same problem as Numenera, in that sufficiently determined and clever PCs can figure out everything intelligible and beat everything beatable in relatively short order, leaving the bits of the setting that are explicitly unintelligible and unbeatable.

On the other hand it has an actual literal Etrian Odyssey labyrinth tucked away in one corner with no shit five strata and different inhabitants and a dangerous secret final boss at the bottom and everything.

System-wise... Its simpler than Exalted, but I'm not sure how well it delivers on its power level promises. Characters don't seem to get too much beyond normal Cypher System PCs, apart from a handful of resources they can allocate to make specific tasks easier.

Especially annoying to me is that the art is full of characters using flashy glowy bits of their "godly nimbus" as weapons and shields. I spent a while paging through the character chapter looking for the ability for that, since it looked pretty damn stylistically core. Turns out it's the effect of a Cypher - a one-use random treasure. That struck me as a very strange decision.

Tonight on Deep Space 9: Bashir and O'Brien get shitfaced and declare everlasting bromance while singing Olde Englishe Songes.

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A fascinating look at how little history looks like our perception of it.

While I'm glad I managed to get a copy through a Bundle of Holding, I'm now really sad I passed up the Kickstarter for Tianxia. This is a marvelous game, with a lot of really smart ideas about using Fate.

For example, it's got a really marvelous discussion of how to use Concessions to throw the spotlight onto other characters while still having an impact on the scene.

Delayed Consequence Decision Compels

Or: I know I'm going to regret this, but...

So, I was running my Fate Core game last night - a hard-ish sci-fi action-adventure game - and one of my issues with the presentation of compels in the Fate Core rulebook finally clicked into place for me. A bunch of times during the session, I looked at a situation and my list of character aspects and went:

"This would be a perfect place for a decision based compel, and there's a clear consequence. But... It feels wrong to cut straight from the decision to the consequence. We're at the decision point now. The players haven't seen it, but this is an interesting direction for them to follow that's in line with some Aspects. But there's a bunch of stuff that's worth playing through en route to the consequence. I could cut straight to it, but that feels unsatisfying. What should I do?"

In situations where the players see the potential for the decision and pursue it, this is a natural retroactive compel - they go do a thing, consequences pop up, slide a Fate Point across the table, point back to the decision and their Aspect, and Bob's your talking skull.

In situation where the player doesn't see the potential for the decision, how do you handle this?

I think the way I'd like to handle it is:

* Compel the decision and turn over a Fate Point, essentially as a pointer to "interesting content and consequences this way!"
* Play through the intervening narrative, with success or failure determining other costs or parameters of the inevitable consequence.
* When play hits the appropriate point, roll out the consequence, clearly point back to the decision, and... Turn over another Fate Point as a cookie for playing along?

Are there obvious pitfalls here I'm missing? Is there a reason to not do this? Have you ever run into this and, if so, how did you handle it?

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I keep getting these promoted tweets. Every single time I do a double take. Yes, this does appear to be a real movie.

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I have a simple opinion on some recent discussion.

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Not my high school, but the former "for Catholics" school two blocks away. I wish I could say I'm surprised.

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I'm absolutely delighted that the top Hottest Title on DriveThruRPG right now is an adventure/setting supplement for Fate Core by +Richard Bellingham  - beating out the titles from Monte Cook and Shadowrun that normally dominate it, and Blood and Smoke, which, appropriately, just won't die. It's next in my RPG reading queue, so I can't endorse the content, but the cover and concept are both delightful.

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While there's a lot more that could be said, this here's a pretty comprehensive starting point.
A thoughtful look at the visual imagery behind Pacific Rim, and why it is not a "dumb movie."

Couldn't find who posted this originally (the awesome +Joe England, maybe?). 
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