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Bored Ghost is telling a new story using Kingdom for our 99th&100th episodes!

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What's a Jurassic Park-style Kingdom unless you have a petting zoo? A petting zoo, dammit. We had genetically altered the dinosaurs so they wouldn't hurt humans, but then tried to switch back to "real" dinosaurs after a last minute attack of conscience.

The moral of the story: real dinosaurs are bitey.

Question: has anyone tried Kingdom play-by-post?

I'm thinking of trying something like it with my geographically and temporally distributed friends and looking for any player experiences or ideas. What went well? What went poorly? What rules needed to change? Are there any gotchas in role-playing scenes?


Game Report - Saturday Storygame Train #1

So we had the first SST in the Twin Cities and played
Kingdom with the awesome +Katrina Ostrander and +Jesse Ross. This was my first time running and their first time
playing Kingdom. Both had some experience with Microscope.

Making the Kingdom

For choosing genre/era we went with the elimination method
where each person chooses one genre/era they are not
interested in playing. After elimination was over we ended
up choosing the Partisans of Rigel IV seed.

Our Rigel IV ended up being a resource colony of the
Overlords, a race of mildly telepathic, floating octopuses.
The Humans on Rigel IV had been abducted from other human
colonies and were being used as a labor force on Ra'qan
Plantations and petrochemical extraction fields. The
Overlords also had captured laborers from a species we
usually called the Beasts. These Overlords had a strictly
hierarchical society in which the Humans and Beasts were
'grist on the wheel'. We decided on a broad definition of
Kingdom to include all humans(even collaborators) and any
open Overlord sympathizers of the humans plight.


External - Geologic activity is increasing and threatening
the livability of the colony.
External - The Overlords may decide to deal with human
resistance by replacing us completely with Beasts.
Internal - The humans of the colony are demanding action
before we are ready to directly confront the Overlords.

Two of these three threats ended up being invoked in some
manner throughout the game.


Name: Jolya
Role: Touchstone
Who are You: Senior harvester who has some sympathies for
the rebels but mostly looks after the workers.
Bond to Aaron: Jolya wants the rebellion to succed and
provides support through allies but finds Aaron to be
reckless with lives of rebels.

Name: Aaron
Role: Power
Who are You: Senior leader in the resistance.
Bond to Yreena: Her black market connections are necessary
for the rebellion to survive, but she despises him due to
the death of her sister Lilliana during a rebel raid.

Name: Yreena Catspaw
Role: Perspective
Who are You: Black market ghost who moves through all the
Bond to Jolya: Her black market enterprises require far
reach with people like Jolya, but mutual distrust due to
the police permeates their relationship.


Colony Labor Assignment Office(Jolya)
This is where human laborers go each day to be divided and
taken to the various fields and plantations.

Partisan Hideout "The Hole"(Aaron)
A secret bunker where the rebellion plots the downfall of
the Overlords.

The Squalor, the city where we eat, sleep, and die
The dense human hive that holds the thousands of humans who
labor for the Overlords.

Dang'ba Plantation(Jolya)
The prime agricultural export of the colony is cultivated
at these large field plantations.

Overlord Palace(Yreena)
Governance of the colony occurs here, although humans only
have minor roles here.

Gasworks near the volcano(Aaron)
These resource extraction and refining sites provide
economic and logistical support to the Overlords.

First Crossroad
Do we make contact with members of the Overlords who
sympathize with the human cause for independence?

[]Humans are banned from the Palace and a friend/agent
[]The rebels resources are critically low.
[]Rank and file rebels have doubts about Aaron's loyalties.

[]A major crackdown against humans happens.

The first few scenes of the crossroad dealt with Aaron
trying to arrange agents to infiltrate the Palace to reach
out to the Overlord sympathizers. One scene in particular
was Yreena reluctantly agreeing to help, but rehashing
Aaron's previous mistakes. During this period Jolya
(Touchstone) noted less resolve among the Overlords and
more attacks against low level Overlords at the Plantation.

Whenever it became apparent the mission being arranged was
not a military strike against the Palace, Crisis raised as
the people were agitated for action. The final scene dealt
with the discovery that some of the agents had been caught.

Power: Yes(Aaron)
All three predictions came true, especially as it was
decided that the advance warning from the captured rebels
alerted the Overlords to what was happening. Some agents
died, humans were banned from the Palace, but a couple
Overlords escaped and were now in the Hole.
The Overlord sympathizers presence has created some unease
and doubt among the rebels. Crisis increases.

Second Crossroad
The events in the Palace caused a rift between more
activist rebels led by Jolya and more cautious rebels led
by Aaron.

Do the fragmented rebel fronts unite as one?

[]Overlord sympathizers will bring Beasts to the cause.
[]The uprising will begin in ernest. War.

[]Jolya's faction will storm Palace by themselves.

The first scene saw Jolya change to Power by annexing
rebels disatisfied with Aaron's recent decisions. In the
same scene Aaron changes to Touchstone as he tries to go
back to talking to the people in the Squalor. The next few
scenes involve Aaron trying to get Yreena to support his
vision, Jolya trying to force all the human rebels under
his command, and the Overlord sympathizer Qhesk insisting
that only a united front can win. Crisis actually went
down as Jolya effectively escalated attacks against the

We also had an unconventional scene where we played the
colonial triumvarate of the Overlords discussing what was
happening with the humans and what to do next. The
decision they reached was to have select Beast enforcers go
on a rampage through the Squalor as punishment to the
rebellious humans. Aaron determined that general panic was
overtaking the citizenry. Jolya's reaction was to
Challenge this to stir up anger and rioting to take the
fight to the Beast slums, which succeded.

The following scene was Yreena using her black market
reputation to get the attacks to end. Aaron also used
Touchstone to calm the crowds and have them back down.
Jolya decided to fight another day and let this incident
calm things down.

The final scene saw a meeting of the rebel leaders of the
Beat, Overlord, and Human factions all meet to try and find
some common ground.

Power: Yes(Jolya)
All predictions came true with a united front of the
oppressed species rising in general revolt against the
Overlords. The insurrection had begun in full.
Things stayed the same as everyone was excited for freedom,
but unsuredays would bring when food and medicine shipments
would slow to a trickle.

Final Crossroad
We decided this was the final crossroad so a dire enough
decision was chosen. The Overlords have brought lots of
heavy equipment to bear, but their war effort requires the
gasworks to function. A desperate plan of setting the
entire underground deposits alight may end the war, may.

Do we set the gas fields alight?

[]The Squalor will be abandoned and we will go back to the

stone age.
[]Qhesk, Rhosar, Naomi, Yreena, and Jolya will be killed in

the spaceship which will be destroyed in the atmosphere.
[]The rebel Overlords will defeat what remains of the

Overlord oppressors.

[]Humans will be squeezed even tighter into the Squalor.

The first scene starts with a sabotage raid on a
communications post. It is interrupted by heavy walker
mechs which are deposited by Overlord aircraft. The
infantry weapons of the rebel team are no match for the
heavy armor of the walkers. In a future scene the
consequences of and the lack of alternatives to lighting
the fields is discussed. General defeat in the war is
ratcheting up Crisis.

During a pivotal scene were a loyal recruitment demands
medicine for their sister, Jolya gives up command in a rage
and takes on Perspective by going to front line. Yreena is
left to fill in the gap, but she does not inspire
confidence. This triggers a Crisis.

Firstly, the Kingdom barely survives the Crisis. Aaron
dies due to battle wounds surrounded by wounded. Yreena
just sees chaos in the command center. Jolya is watching
and directing a fight against a troop of walkers which are
flattening part of the Squalor. However we also get to see
Qhesk led Jolya to a recently arrived cache of weapons
capable of destroying the walkers. The human settlement
survives this assault but the wounds are deep.
Crisis Over

We only had one crossroad left to tick off so the final
scene was Jolya and Aaron deciding what the ship that left
sould try to accomplish, and who would be on it. Yreena is
weighing heavily the correct course of action.

Power: Yes(Yreena)
With a big boom all the predictions came true. The war
ended with freedom from the Overlords, but at a tremendous
price. All those who led the fight ended up being
destroyed trying to find an allied planet that could send
technological aid.
The people are entering a real unknown, but one they
created themselves.

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The last episode of Axthetable's season 2.5 is the second part of our Best RPGs for Beginners double episode. Ric, Rob and Joanna discuss their controversial number 1 picks and we have final thoughts from Concrete Cow.

0000 GxB (2011) by +Jake Richmond
0800 Kingdom (2013) by +Ben Robbins
1730 Witch: the Road to Lindisfarne (2012) by +Kevin Barthaud & Richard Lacy

To read replays (transcripts) of a session of the above games which Ric organised see:
GxB: Momoko the Hero
Witch: The Witch & the Rosary

From Concrete Cow: Neil on Inspectres (2004); Elina on Witch: the Road to Lindisfarne; Lloyd Gyan on Fate Accelerated (2013); Nick Reynolds on playing with those you like and trust
Best RPGs for Beginners (Part 2)
Best RPGs for Beginners (Part 2)

My goal is to start a Storygames Twin Cities group in Minneapolis-St. Paul. I see there are some already successful groups of that model. My question is where I can find out more about how they work.

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I'm experimenting with a new way to do Time Passes. Check it out.

In a few weeks I will be running a session of Kingdom for an event at the local FLGS. It is for a Space Opera club so I decided upon the Kingdom being the Federation Starship Pericles in Star Trek. I am wondering how this community would approach this game, ideas, etc.

Kingdom at Story Games Seattle.

When the new Archbishop of the Church of England forbids contracts binding demons to work on Sundays, the senior partner of our firm has an inspirational meeting with one of the founding partners (whose ghost haunts our office). He gets in touch with his inner lawyer, remembers why he started practicing demonic contract law in the first place, then goes all Phoenix Wright “OBJECTION!” and sues the Church in court.

Which is a beautiful moment of character growth. And then the mob comes for us.

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"I fear we will neglect the problems of Earth while reaching for the stars…"

More hot gaming from +Eric Vulgaris
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