We have a holiday bonus episode! Lowell had the chance to speak with Eloy Lasanta, author of AMP: Year One. They discuss game design, the supers genre, and his five year plan for the sweeping story of the AMP rpg.
Author Archives: edige23
Welcome to Play on Target and our fourth GM Jam taking aim at a particular rpg or setting. To explore these games we gather several GMs experienced with a system. This episode, we take a look at Robin Laws’ GUMSHOE engine. Created originally at Simon Rogers request, this system includes a special focus on “investigations” in rpgs. As you’ll hear from the discussion what an investigation means varies from game to game, setting to setting. GUMSHOE first appeared in Pelgrane Press’ The Esoterrorists (2006), and since has powered award winning games like Trail of Cthulhu and Night’s Black Agents. In this episode we talk about what constitutes GUMSHOE, what challenges it presents at the table, and where it clicks for our GMs. We also consider some of the concerns about the system that have held off some from playing.
Once again, we have an astounding group of GMs to talk about this:
Stephanie Bryant’s a professional writer, as well as prolific GM and GUMSHOE expert. She worked on TimeWatch: Book of Changing Years. She’s currently working on an adventure for The Dracula Dossier for Night’s Black Agents. As well she co-hosts the Tell Me Another podcast.
Yohann Delalande’s a gamemaster and translator. He has worked on French translations for The Zalozhniy Quartet, 13th Age, Hot War and First Contact: X-Corps, the English translation of the upcoming Polaris Core Rulebook, and is a regular contributor to the French RPG magazine, Casus Belli.
Steve Dempsey’s been around GUMSHOE since its inception. He is a designer and contributor to many Pelgrane products including Blood on the Snow, Bookhounds of London, Dreamhounds of Paris, and The Dying Earth RPG.
Ruth Tillman is a gamemaster and designer currently working on an adventure for the Dracula Dossier. She contributed to TimeWatch: Book of Changing Years. She co-hosts The Double Shadow, a Clark Ashton Smith Podcast and writes about Weird Gaming for The Illuminerdy as The Arkham Archivist.
MENTIONED IN THE EPISODE:
“No Clues Without Consequence” The first of a series by Will Hindmarch on clues in GUMSHOE
“Sword-Fighting on a Roller-Coaster: Railroading for the Best in RPG Play” Will Hindmarch considers the specter of the railroad at the table
Pelgrane Press (includes demos and other resources)
Welcome to Play on Target and our third GM Jam taking aim at a particular rpg or setting. To explore these games we gather several GMs experienced with a system. This episode, we look at Vincent Baker’s excellent and influential Apocalypse World. This time I operate as the novice host- having only played a couple Powered by the Apocalypse games and read the core book. We open with me trying to draw out a quick pitch for the game and dive into the nuts and bolts of the game. We consider what Apocalypse World does at the table and how it gets there. In particular I ask how GMs work with the mechanical systems of the game and the social tensions of the framework. Eventually I get around to asking about sex moves.
We had an amazing group of GMs for this talk:
Jerome Larre’s a French game designer who participated in the writing of about 50 published RPG books. Most are only available in French, but some are available in English : Qin, Kuro, Fiasco playsets, a Hillfolk series pitch, and Grim World (For Dungeon World). He’s now working on a few English titles, including Alas Vegas and The Sprawl. Jerome’s a game journalist and very small press publisher (Ryuutama).
He’s huge fan of Apocalypse World, and has run and played dozens of sessions with the Apocalypse Engine. Jerome’s also worked on a French-only (at the time being) 200 page Apocalypse World Supplement book that should be released in the coming months.
Brennan Taylor is a New Jersey game designer who founded the small publisher Galileo Games and co-founded the online game store Indie Press Revolution. He’s notable for his work on Bulldogs and Mortal Coil, as well as his contributions to the Fate Toolkit and “Tower of the Serpents” from Fate Worlds. Gallileo has published Kingdom of Nothing, Shelter in Place, How We Came to Live Here, and The Ministry Initiative. He’s done an amazing hack of Legend of the Five Rings to AW you can find on his blog.
Mark Diaz Truman is co-designer for Urban Shadows, a dark urban fantasy game Powered by the Apocalypse. He also created Our Last Best Hope, a novel disaster movie rpg. Currently he’s designing two AW hacks: By the Book, a police procedural of straight cops in a dirty city and Cartel, a drug fiction telenovella filled with Mexican drug cartels. Truman’s also involved with two excellent Patreon projects: the Fate Codex and Different Play, a project supporting diversity in analog games.
Rachel E.S. Walton is an artist. She’s a longtime GM of many Powered by the Apocalypse games and other RPGs. She’s the designer of the upcoming The Long Orbit, a space horror hack of Monsterhearts. You can hunt around for various whispers about that. My favorite teaser comes from a John Stavropoulos G+ post.
I’ll point listeners to Jason Pitre’s excellent RPG Design PanelCast. In particular Episode 40 is a recording of the “Hacking Apocalypse World” panel from Metatopia 2014.
This episode was originally recorded as a Google Hangout which means it is also available as a video on YouTube.
Other Games Referenced This Episode:
Welcome to Play on Target where this week we try a new experiment taking aim at a particular rpg or setting. To explore these games we’ll gather several experienced GMs who have run them. This first episode looks at White Wolf’s Changeling the Lost. We open with an elevator pitch for the game and consider what draws us to it. Then we dive into the nuts and bolts of what we actually do at the table: what elements are most difficult, which do we focus on, how do players react to the concepts, and where do our campaigns actually go?
For this excellent “GM Jam” we’ve gathered Chris Handley, Adam D, Michael R, and Shoe Skogen with Play on Target hosts Sam Dillon and Lowell Francis. We hope it will be useful for players interested in Changeling the Lost, veterans seeking a new perspective, and any gamemaster who wants to hear how others approach running. Let us know what you think of this experiment in the comments, suggest other games we should cover, or start a discussion on RPG Geek.
Michael R’s Shadows of San Francisco Campaign
Angelus Morningstar’s Amazing CtL Supplements
Actual Play Video