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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:
Monster of the Week