Wednesday, 23 May 2007

Pentasystem v0.2

So here's the Pentasystem version 0.2 (14-page PDF).

It's a lot closer to an actual system now, though there are still gaps. I still haven't quite figured out the escalation of consequences, and there are obvious holes like "How do I do an unopposed action?" and the like. I also need to blend it with the Acts of Increasing Desperation text or much thereof, and build some templates, character sheets and the like. And piles and piles of examples.

I think there may be a mechanic whereby a minor character (or organization, or other character-like thing) can start out as an attribute, or even part of an attribute, and gradually become a fully-fledged character with their own motivations and desires. That could be fun.

The big thing that's missing is any kind of setting. It's designed for setting-neutrality, but some kind of default setting is needed. Problem is, I'm not sure what. I could use my Underground Railroad setting (fantasy steampunk: Dwarves in trains, exploiting gnomes in mecha; elves in zeppelins; camel-centaurs...), but I have a sneaking suspicion that while it would probably be tremendous fun to play, it may turn people off to have Yet Another Elf Opera Setting. I've been browsing the "settings we want" threads on Story-Games, but frankly, very little of it appeals to me. A lot of it is dark, for a start. If dark horror despairing post-apocalyptic dystopian tragic total party kill is the North Pole, I'm sitting approximately in Auckland, New Zealand (metaphorically as well as literally) - about 2/3 of the way to the opposite pole. And much of the stuff that isn't dark is historical, which sounds like work. I need to find either something that everyone loves that's never been done well (cyberpunk might be a candidate), or come up with something completely creative along the lines of City of Masks.

It would be good to have at least two example settings, a magical one and a non-magical one.

Oy, there's a lot of work to get this thing finished, and I don't know if anyone will even be interested in it. Which is what encourages me to work primarily on the fun bits.

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