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View Full Version : Barf Forth Apocalyptica: Apocalypse World


pence
08-31-2011, 11:01 AM
Ostensibly a support thread for the Virtual Tabletop II game, Hatchet City and Blind-Blue (http://www.gamespite.net/talkingtime/showpost.php?p=1140180&postcount=211). What does Apocalypse World look like? Probably something like this:

http://i55.tinypic.com/2lj2dk7.jpg

What does character creation look like? Pretty easy, you just read along with these playbooks and it totally walks you through everything: http://apocalypse-world.com/ApocalypseWorld-playbooks.pdf

But hold on, since we're trying to play a scenario where a lot of stuff's going to be going off all over the place right from the start, we'll need a few of these playbooks more than the others. Specifically, someone's going to be playing these totally hot characters. The first three are necessary, the last two are optional:

The Hardholder

http://i52.tinypic.com/15mcvg0.png

There is no government, no society, in Apocalypse World. When hardholders ruled whole continents, when they waged war on the other side of the world instead of with the hold across the burn-flat, when their armies numbered in the hundreds of thousands and they had fucking boats to hold their fucking airplanes on, that was the golden age of legend. Now, anyone with a concrete compound and a gang of gunluggers can claim the title. You, you got something to say about it?

The hardholder owns stuff... a holding, a makeshift compound of concrete, sheet metal, and rebar. Your holding is called Hatchet City, which is at war with this rival warlord named Ambergrease, whose gang fights with a viciousness beyond all reason. You have a gang that fights for you, and barter to offer people... if you're lucky enough to have surplus.

The Brainer

http://i53.tinypic.com/28b5r0g.png

Brainers are the weird psycho psychic mindfucks of Apocalypse World. They have brain control, puppet strings, creepy hearts, dead souls, and eyes like broken things. They stand in your peripheral vision and whisper into your head, staring. They clamp lenses over your eyes and read your secrets. Theyíre just the sort of tasteful accoutrement that no well-appointed hardhold can do without.

The brainer is, more than any other character in Apocalypse World, in touch with the world's psychic maelstrom. They get close to you, and they get their brains inside yours, and they manipulate you. You live in Hatchet City, which is at war with this rival warlord named Ambergrease, whose gang fights with a viciousness beyond all reason. You're in charge of some pretty important prisoners, presumed spies, that sort. Bad to worse, it's like the psychic maelstrom itself has turned against Hatchet City.

The Skinner

http://i56.tinypic.com/2554yz7.png

Even in the filth of Apocalypse World, thereís food that isnít death on a spit, music that isnít shrieking hyenas, thoughts that arenít afraid, bodies that arenít used meat, sex that isnít rutting, dancing thatís real. There are moments that are more than stench, smoke, rage and blood. Anything beautiful left in this ugly ass world, skinners hold it. Will they share it with you? What do you offer them?

Everyone in Apocalypse World is hot, but the skinner is beautiful. Everywhere you go, people love you, and do things for you, and want to be with you. You live in Hatchet City, which is at war with this rival warlord named Ambergrease, whose gang fights with a viciousness beyond all reason. You might be loyal to the hardholder, or maybe not, but chances are that no one really wants to hurt you, no.

The Angel

http://i55.tinypic.com/243pz55.png

When youíre lying in the dust of Apocalypse World guts aspilled, for whom do you pray? The gods? Theyíre long gone. Your beloved comrades? Fuckers all, or you wouldnít be here to begin with. Your precious old mother? Sheís a darling but she canít put an intestine back inside so itíll stay. No you pray for some grinning kid or veteran or just someone with a heartshocker and a hand with sutures and a 6-pack of morphine. And when that someone comes, thatís an angel.

The angel's got this kit, scissors, tape, narcostims, gloves, bloodslower... everything, really. You live in Hatchet City, which is at war with this rival warlord named Ambergrease, whose gang fights with a viciousness beyond all reason. You're the go-between for the hardholder and the population, and you're in charge of their well-being... not just those injured in battle, but their material needs, too. Thing is, this is Apocalypse World, and difficult and disruptive shit keeps happening.

The Battlebabe, Chopper, or Gunlugger

http://i51.tinypic.com/nesx06.png http://i55.tinypic.com/2e56sll.png http://i52.tinypic.com/2r453wz.png

You're one of the violent people, the ones that solve their problems in the simplest, most direct way possible. You live in Hatchet City, which is at war with this rival warlord named Ambergrease, whose gang fights with a viciousness beyond all reason. You're the leader of some violent body in Hatchet City... either a family enforcer, or maybe a lieutenant of the hardholder's.

But that's just the fluff, check the pdf link toward the top of the post and it's got all kinds of moves and stuff to get your brain going.

namelessentity
08-31-2011, 12:27 PM
I only briefly went through the pdf, but the brainer just looks soo intriguing. If I can make this I want to be one of those (unless when reading I find something cooler)

Googleshng
08-31-2011, 08:50 PM
I'm vaguely leaning towards Hardholder I think, possibly... although yeesh. This kinda looks more spread all over than most Vince Baker stuff.

Some points of clarification off the top of my head...
- So it's generally 1d10+stat to do things?
- Seriously, is there a glossary somewhere? There seem to be like 10 different abstract resources, possibly representing specific sorts of relationships between characters.
- Every class (except Battlebabe oddly enough) seems to have a magical superpower that activates by having sex with another PC. I assume there is some weird complex mechanic tied to this making these rare things you have to work at to activate, rather than this being an incentive to just constantly generate free items and whatever the heck Forward is by being a party of depraved bisexual hedonists constantly banging during any free moments?
- OK, with either of the above theories, the Skinner class comes off pretty freaking weird. Not that some kind of weird psychic hypno-pimp isn't a weird archetype to start with.

Comb Stranger
08-31-2011, 10:05 PM
I'm vaguely leaning towards Hardholder I think, possibly... although yeesh. This kinda looks more spread all over than most Vince Baker stuff.

Some points of clarification off the top of my head...
- So it's generally 1d10+stat to do things?
- Seriously, is there a glossary somewhere? There seem to be like 10 different abstract resources, possibly representing specific sorts of relationships between characters.
- Every class (except Battlebabe oddly enough) seems to have a magical superpower that activates by having sex with another PC. I assume there is some weird complex mechanic tied to this making these rare things you have to work at to activate, rather than this being an incentive to just constantly generate free items and whatever the heck Forward is by being a party of depraved bisexual hedonists constantly banging during any free moments?
- OK, with either of the above theories, the Skinner class comes off pretty freaking weird. Not that some kind of weird psychic hypno-pimp isn't a weird archetype to start with.

It's 2d6+Stat. At +3 to a stat (the highest), you have about a 50% chance of a critical success, while a -2 will only score one on boxcars.

The resources are:
Barter, one unit of general, tradeable goods and services. Each sheet lists what your services are worth before haggling, and most characters start with some valuable but generally useless pre-apocalypse baubles.

Hx, or History, a counter of how close you are to another character. Getting to know someone better increases it, while distancing yourself reduces it. At +/-4Hx, you trade it in for 1XP and reset to +/-1. Hx is also used when you attempt to aid or interfere with another character, acting as your modifier. If you open up and wear your heart on your sleeve, your companions will gain more experience, but they'll have an easier time screwing you over when the price is right (and it will be, someday). You modify people's Hx after every session (or when GM deems appropriate), as well as being modified in play by certain intra-party actions.

Forward is a one-time bonus to your next roll, representing psychic intuition (such as using Wierd to open your mind), extensive planning, or just feeling fantastic. It's often conditional to a person or particular action.

Hold is an abstract counter that doesn't mean anything; they're just tokens you can trade in to do whatever the paragraph specifies.

And Harm, your health. It's tracked by a 6-segmented clock, with each unit of harm filling in one section. The first two segments heal naturally, the third requires medical attention, and above that is the danger zone. Harm coming at you is reduced by armor on a 1-1 basis; 1 armor being piecemeal protection, 2 armor being actual kevlar vests and the like. When you start taking serious injury (above 9:00), you can opt to take a permanent penalty to one of your stats to avoid death or unconsciousness.

And sex is used as a bartering tool. You can only roll persuade if you have something they want, whether that's food, sex, gear or favors. I don't know if there's a hard rule limiting sex (there isn't one to keep you from harming and immediately healing another PC, giving you both +1 Hx for developing a bizarre abusive co-dependency), but since it's a strongly player-driven narrative, it's really not good form to abuse it. The GM would probably rule that you can only gain one set of bonuses per day/session/whatever, if it's going to get out of hand.

As for the Skinner, they're a weird action movie character. They use ornate antique weapons, dress in bizarre outfits and mesmerize people by stripping.

http://static.muveez.com/media/Babydoll_Sucker_Punch(1).jpg

Googleshng
08-31-2011, 10:32 PM
Hx, or History, a counter of how close you are to another character. Getting to know someone better increases it, while distancing yourself reduces it. At +/-4Hx, you trade it in for 1XP and reset to +/-1.

What's the in-game rationalization for it dropping back down exactly? Kinda seems like you'd get situations like:

"Argh! I hate that guy! He stabbed me, he stole my girlfriend, and he shot my dog! What's that? He also stole my shotgun? Eh. I guess he's an OK guy. Just a little irritating."

I don't know if there's a hard rule limiting sex (there isn't one to keep you from harming and immediately healing another PC, giving you both +1 Hx for developing a bizarre abusive co-dependency), but since it's a strongly player-driven narrative, it's really not good form to abuse it.

Yeah... that wasn't so much me double checking if I could totally break the system by being a huge slut as trying to figure whether the huge amount of character sheet real estate devoted to it translated to importance in some kind of complex arcane central mechanic, or what.

As for the Skinner,
http://static.muveez.com/media/Babydoll_Sucker_Punch(1).jpg

Aha!

pence
08-31-2011, 10:49 PM
Regarding loopholes, the MC does have a lot of scene framing power, as long as it's done with the principles (be a fan of the players' characters, treat apocalypse world like a real place) in mind. Two specific examples from the text:


Keeler, this person named III corners you that night. Sheís fucking pissed off, she comes straight at you, fists first. What did you do to her?

Marie, Bran, you two are trapped outside of the holding, youíre hunkered down inside an old gutted RV. Outside, six of Dremmerís gang are setting up camp, looks like theyíre settling in. They donít know youíre there, they just blundered in on top of you. What are you two doing out here, anyway?


Although if it were becoming a problem, I'd just come out of the game and address it on a player level.

Hx reset:

Resetting Hx from +4 to +1 doesnít mean that now you know them less than you did, obviously not. It means that youíve crossed a threshold of knowing them, kind of like how both of your brothers know you better than a coworker does, but you can still say that one of them knows you better than the other.

Comb Stranger
08-31-2011, 11:28 PM
Also, Hx is how well you know someone, not how much you like them. That's a very important distinction. Even if you absolutely hate a guy, you want to know everything about him. Especially if you hate him. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer, as they say.

pence
09-01-2011, 01:50 PM
I think we're pretty solid on Friday the 9th for a game. If there are stragglers that want a game, or if people just want to continue it for another session, I'm also committed to running it on the 16th as well.

Hatchet City and Blind-Blue

Time: Friday, September 9 and/or Friday, September 16, 9:00PM-1:00AM Eastern (6:00PM-10:00PM Pacific).

System: Apocalypse World

Players: 3-5, 1 GM (sorry, MC)
Platform: Skype + IRC

pence
09-02-2011, 07:55 AM
To clarify, I'm totally cool with having two groups of people for this since I've dedicated myself to two Fridays in a row. I know that Nodal might be interested from talking to him on IRC, which would make six players, or two groups of three. Right now I've got:

YES:

Destil
Nich
googleshng
widdershins


MAYBE:

namelessentity
Nodal

kaisel
09-02-2011, 08:47 AM
If you need another player for the 16th (if there are enough people interested), I can probably jump in then, if nobody minds. I won't 100% commit yet, because I might have a conflict, but I'll tentatively throw my hat into the ring.

pence
09-05-2011, 10:22 PM
An update for groups. The playtest group gets the brunt of my rules fumbling.

Playtest group (Friday, Sept. 9) [Stealing an existing D&D group for this]

Nich
Nodal
widdershins


Main group (Friday, Sept. 16)

Destil
Googleshng
kaisel
namelessentity

namelessentity
09-06-2011, 10:41 PM
Sounds like a plan, looking forward to it.

pence
09-09-2011, 11:36 PM
We made it through! It was pretty tight, old school, even. A few awkward MC turns, and definitely more stuff going on than can be conceivably run through in one sitting.

kaisel
09-12-2011, 05:13 PM
Well, just got word that I have some family members that are going to be in town on Friday, so I'll probably have to bow out of the game. I'm sorry about the short notice.

pence
09-12-2011, 05:23 PM
No worries; three is plenty. Also, anyone is still welcome to fill in those remaining two slots.

Mightyblue
09-12-2011, 07:25 PM
Oh, hey, I have this week off so I could do that. I'm in?

pence
09-13-2011, 07:38 AM
Welcome to Hatchet City, mind the waders - they might seem weird, but they harvest the mudfish.

pence
09-16-2011, 12:39 PM
Barfing forth tonight on Skype at 9 Eastern. Be there for dice and general good times!

This is a "map" that I made last week to give everyone an orientation of the area around Hatchet City: https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/1U9xg9FkKBR4bZS1kghLr3-tK09XjsmpF8zXQ4Ps2g-o/edit?hl=en_US

Whoever is playing the Hardholder can optionally make up a map of Hatchet City, whatever they want their pocket of relative safety in Apocalypse World to look like.

Googleshng
09-16-2011, 06:33 PM
Whoever is playing the Hardholder can optionally make up a map of Hatchet City, whatever they want their pocket of relative safety in Apocalypse World to look like.

Short notice, but OK!

http://www.kekkai.org/google/random/hardhold.png

Not pictured, but clearly implied: Teeming masses of surly refugees, big huge stacks of just... generic junk all piled up making a labyrinth of 10 foot high walls all throughout the place.

pence
09-16-2011, 06:37 PM
You have officially earned that Hardholder playbook, sir. That's awesome.

Mightyblue
09-16-2011, 11:18 PM
That was a lot of fun. We'll have to finish it sometime.

pence
09-16-2011, 11:30 PM
Fuck yeah we do, I just need to keep Hatchet City I and Hatchet City II straight in my head. The butterfly effect is a powerful thing.

And yeah, that was great. I think Apocalypse World does a lot of smart stuff without seeming 'weird' or making the players read rules about 'scene framing' or other strange jargon. I also think I'm finally understanding a bit about how to run the game.

widdershins
09-17-2011, 08:33 AM
So I understand your hardhold isn't disease infested, nor is your hardholder. Also I hear your people aren't ready to riot and overthrow you. Also your skinner (and lover) hasn't defected to the other side.

Well.. I BET YOU AIN'T GOT THIS COOL ASS BOX OF PENICILLIN.

Oh wait... I traded that to the crazy man in the gasmask who decided, even though I had agreed to help get his men cured straight away, that it wasn't good enough unless I was able to magically make it happen 5 minutes ago.

I roll so bad you guys. Seriously.

namelessentity
09-17-2011, 11:47 AM
I prefer to look at this as a Goofus and Galient comic. You aren't rolling bad, you are providing humorous alternatives.