Saturday, May 14, 2005

Games in limbo

It was this meme surfacing at Andy Kitkowskis homepage

It's really simple. I call it the RPG Design Plan Hit List

STEP ONE Think back to all the ideas (anything you've thought about for more than 5 minutes or so) in the past year or two.

STEP TWO Post about your ideas. All of them. A good couplea sentences each. Tell us what excites you about these ideas. Feel free to throw in spoilers and looks under the proverbial hood- It's not as if any of us are going to steal your ideas (that would imply that we have time to even consider writing something not on our personal Hit List). If you want to keep the ideas semi-private, go ahead and lock down the entry to "friends only".

STEP THREE With the above, post a likelihood of actually getting around to writing and publishing that game.

STEP FOUR Comment on other people's game ideas. Tell them what you like, what you'd like to see, etc.

Johnny Bode

The main priority right now is definitely Johnny Bode, which I have written about earlier. I won’t write more about the mecanics now. It’s a game with an explicit game system, (something I’m not very interested in otherwise) for short sessions and intensive play. One of the few games were it’s recommended to drink alcohol while playing. It’s not a drinking game, though, so it should be small quantities. Me and Jonas just have to finish this. it will be finished.


A short friform scenario, with a quite strict frame and without a game master. It’s supposed to be played by three players, of which no one has read the game. The flow is quite different from ordinary friform games: The game is divided strictly into four scenes, which each features the same three characters, but the players will characters between each scene. Instead of playing a character through the game, each player has a feeling attached to them. In the first scene character A might be aggressive and character B feeling guilty. Their players will change characters to the second scene, but keep the emotion. In first and fourth scene the will play the same character. For every scene each player will read a short document about the character she will play and the setting of the scene. These texts are not to be read before the game.

The characters are pretty much constructed to my satisfaction, but making the scenes fit this schedule is of course harder. There is still much to do, but I really hope complete it during the summer.

Terrorist larp

This larp, or lajv as I would rather call it to keep the Nordic terminology, is the only one I consider to be in an active phase right now. I was very into it a few weeks ago, but the two games above has moved in to take over my interest. But I still have some hope to finish this. If we at all are going to do this we will first write the most of it and then start to organize the game itself.

The game is going to be about ten political activists (or perhaps you would call them terrorists) and their social interactions in a conspiratory apartment. We are not going to use a totally straight forward lajv game flow, but will take use of a couple of techniques.

First of all the game will be cut into scenes, probably five. Each scene might be between one and two hours and all of them will take place in the apartment. Between scenes things might happen both in and outside of the apartment. The scenes will be explicitly cut and one person from the staff will tell very briefly what happened between scenes.

Secondly we will make use of something similar to a technique used in the small lajv Viljan (made as a side arrangement to Vreden). There it was called fifteen minutes of fame. Every player will have to at least once go to a specific place in the room. The game will be automatically cut and a spot light will be directed at the player. He will speak about things he’s thinking about and maybe things that has happened between scenes. (A very similar technique is actually used in Jared Sorensons InSpectres.)

Nothing is written on this game. There is no time plan, but I have hope to have it done in near future. I won’t write all by myself, but I have to start writing and then get people to help me.

Campaign larp

We got quite far in the creation of this lajv, the amount of text was not evene a fifth of the needed amount, but much of the structure was set. The thought was an initial game with around twenty people, where the heritage of an old and very rich toy fabricator was going to be divided. The main aim was to create it to be very open ended so that follow up games could be constructed with almost any combination of the original players. It should be easy for players as well as organizers. But still it was a quite big project, and we ran out of energy. But the structure is still there to be picked up. We might pick it up one day. But not in a while, that’s for sure.

The Mafia-sauna game

This is thought to be very simple and short game to play whenever you sit in and sauna and want to avoid normal socializing. The setting is the giant cyperpunk city of tomorrow, probably not on Earth. As long as anyone can remember the city has been a battlefield for mobsters. During centuries the mob leaders has tried to kill each other with a never decreasing frenzy. This has lead to an extreme paranoia. Now when they meet they always do this naked, in a sauna.

It's very important that you play this game in a sauna. Each player will have three characteristics and some special ability. In the beginning I wanted to have a game master, but this is out of the question now. The system will be a very simple distribution system.

I might complete this game, it seems like fun and it shouldn't be too hard. But it's way down the priority list.


Anonymous Jonas Karlsson said...

They all sound interesting, but I must say that you have to finish Bode and write the mafia-sauna game. The sauna thing sounds like it could be hilarious, and wouldn't need to be mechanics heavy. And the playtesting, I would volunteer!

But haven't you forgotten about the after-the-catastrophe lajv which you were considering using Skytte-C for? The one with the zombie thing, or the virus or whatever, where the gamemasters would communicate through radio with the players? That also sounded cool.

10:35 pm  
Blogger Sven Holmström said...

Thanks for the comment.

Sure, that lajv would be cool. I have a lot of lajv fragments in my head, but I skipped all but the two I'm most into at the moment, since they are all so raw at ideas for the moment. I have yet to make *one* lajv, then I can go on to think about more of them. but I should have put at least one more there.

But here are the different ideas we usually toss around:

1. The great Zombie-larp, including real research on sombies. (An extremely cool sombielarp was made in Denmark at one Knudepunkt recently. Anna Ericson told me great things about it.)

2. The lajv with different roles for male and female, as a reaction to the identical roles that are proscribed in Nordic lajv today. Men and women on two sides of a plexiglas slide.

3. Incommunicado. Ten Turks, ten Swedes, talking Swedish and Turkish, no English. Fighting and hell between groups. Could be Finns and Swedes as well.

4. This is the great one. The musical lajv. This is goal of art in the world. A larp that is a musical. Beauty, beauty, beauty.

10:47 pm  

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