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The13Fates

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  1. The way I roleplay them in my games: the lower the rank, the more likely they are to be kind and help out Innocent members of Malifaux, sort of like friendly neighborhood policemen, upholding the law but not being too hard on the general public. Once you start going up the ranks however, that's where the bullies, the show-offs and the intimidation comes in, the way I see it, the upper ranks have to deal with so much; from "Arcanist Terrorists" to literal towers of paperwork, that trusting "innocent" people not to backstab them just isn't something they are going to risk anymore.
  2. For my last campaign, I started by simply flipping through the Bestiary to see what caught my eye. I landed on Void Wretch, then I started asking questions: * They are attracted by disturbances in time, what is attracting them? Some kind of artifact... * What is this artifact? A time prison maybe... * Who created it? An artist, possibly by mistake... * Why hasn't anyone found it? The artist separated and hid the artifact before his death * How does the antagonist know about it? She has been studying V-Wretches and has discovered a pattern. * How are the Fated involved? They are Relic Hunters and hired to search and clear out the last known resting place of the artist And then follow up questions. From the seed of Void Wretch sprang a year long campaign discovering the history of the Artist, the troubles of the noble lady and what happens when you mess with time and have to deal with Aionus. It was great to see the campaign grow and react to how the players responded to the growing event around them.
  3. For me, it's GM consistency on top of simple open communication and respect of people's time. If a player is going to make the time to clear their timetable and show up for a game every week/fortnight then the GM should be doing all they can to do the same. Sounds obvious but when a player is excited for a game but the GM makes a habit of not being in the mood or hasn't had the time to prep anything; it kills a person's enthusiasm. Story telling is another factor for keeping a stable player base, keep the shared story interesting, having player choices matter and the world react to those choices and so on and so forth. Being able to hear "I can't wait to see what happens next session" is the best reward a GM can get.
  4. Ran the first session tonight with a modified house-ruled chargen (Set numbers for Aspects/Skills, 1 trigger, talent from a small list of 12, default list of weapons/magic, no twist decks, control hands are drawn from main deck). Had one new player who played a bit of the miniwar game and was able to make a character within 10 minutes using this method and the game went very smoothly. Using the main Fate deck as the players control hands didn't make a noticeable impact and because the table had limited-yet-free-reign over their skills/trigger/talent, they made more invested decisions with their characters because they had a clearer idea of who they were. Drop-ins, who have a good experience at the table could well become fully fledged every-weekers. In my experience at least, this is more likely to happen if they have a character they have created themselves and become invested in seeing grow, rather than adding a name to a pre-gen. Treating a drop-in player as a chore or not committed enough to play in a weekly game does little to grow the player base of this hobby.
  5. Excellent suggestions Hellomurse. That would make it feel a lot more like what I imagine an Ongoing Challenge should look like, different skill sets working in tandem with one another and effecting the outcome. Thank you.
  6. Well that's the point, nothing has changed in these ongoing challenges apart from the end duration which the players (typically) have no knowledge of results wise. If it wasn't an Ongoing Challenge, would you ask for 2-3x Lockpicking checks from one player and 3-4 Notice checks to spot guards from 3 other players? Personally I wouldn't. In this Lockpicking situation it would be one check from the lock picker and one Notice check each from the others. Did the lock picker succeed? Yes, the lock opens in a matter of minutes. Margin of Success? It takes seconds, good work! Failure? It's taking longer than normal but you're getting there, the TN lowers by 2, try again. Margin of Failure? You've broken the pick and it's lodged in the lock, you'll need to find another way in. As Fatemaster, I've already got a feeling of when guards would appear on their patrols, so at that point it's just a case of 'do the players on watch see the patrol or not?' with their checks. To your "Cleaning your room" example, why, in an RPG mind you not real life, would I ever need 4 successful checks in order to clean it? Surely a single check noting any margins of results would be sufficient, right? I don't often get asked as a player "make 6 successful Notice checks and I'll tell you what you see in this room" do you? But I can see a good reason to use Ongoing Challenges for certain other things, asking for information around the district or navigating the Quarantine Zone without a guide for instance. Both of which would be a massive time sink otherwise BUT there would still be the issue of four players sitting at the table saying "yeah, that again" as I place a poker chip on it. How do I make this process of Ongoing Challenges more fulfilling and interesting? Rather than it being something "that should go by really fast". Because if it is something that's so dull and boring that it needs to go by "really fast" just to get it out of the way, why is it such a major part of almost all Penny Dreadfuls?
  7. Well let's take the One-shot "Into the Gutter" and it's "Clearing the Collapsed Building" Ongoing challenge. It has three skills at a moderate TN11 with baseline success/failure with 2 events for each duration and a clock at the end depending on duration. My players started this challenge and the first duration was: "I start by picking up debris and tossing it out" "I'll use Leadership to better get everyone organized" "I'll help with lifting too" "Yup same here" So first duration, we have 3 Successes, no failures and ran through the first event, no problems. But then the next duration begins: "I'll keep on tossing out debris I guess" "Still keeping everyone organized" "I don't have anything better in my skills, so keep working" "Same" New event, all good then the next duration starts and the players are just flipping cards saying they're doing the same thing. We finally reach the success threshold and the table finally wakes up and begins having fun again. The first duration is fun, the end of each duration is fun... after that first duration, it's like the players are waiting to play the game again and just want it to end.
  8. During various campaigns and one-shots an issue I come across time and time again is the implementation of the Ongoing Challenges. It's an almost audible break of player agency as their actions are boiled down to 'flip your best check and mark off success and failure' and no amount of artsy description can stop the feeling that they are stuck in the Ongoing Challenge box rather than being in control of their own actions. Is there a better way to handle these situations? Because I see their worth (on paper) as a great way to mark off passages of time and to have consequences for failure/red herrings but I'm struggling to keep the players interest up when I suddenly slap down 'the list of limited skills' and ask them to make check after check after check until it's over. How can I get Ongoing Challenges to work as intended rather than be a bore at the table?
  9. Some further brainstorming on the matter. Let's assume I have the numbers, so that they can choose skills and aspects with them, then say hand them a default weapon (something cheap from each weapon class for example) and the same for armor. For magic users, okay here's your "starter" grimoire w/ the unique school (which can be changed later if desired). Triggers shouldn't take long unless Johnny Powergamer has to evaluate each one separately. The issue now becomes Twist Decks and Talents, all of the above + choosing a pursuit is going to take <15minutes on a good day. Twist Decks are tricky depending on if the player in question has a trigger they want to see every flip or not, should I just prepare 4per/deck of cards I own and have the player choose or make it random? Talent wise, I need a MUCH shorter list if I'm going to keep things quick and would like to hear recommendations on what a good list of 8-12 starter Talents would look like (from all book sans Gremlins). Should I stick with simple stat-ups or have some more out-there options?
  10. My local gaming club has a slight problem (at least at the moment) it's very much a 'show up and hope there's a game available' type of situation. This leads to players not always having games, or even worst GMs having no players (due to them no longer showing up due to risk of no game). Player retention is another factor. I've ran one-shots and the one common feedback I receive is that the game went great but players really want to have their own characters, rather than pre-gens. Through the Breach isn't known for its 15min char-gen, Tarot - Skills - Aspects - Talent - Pursuit - Loadout - Magic. It's a massive time sink if a new player sits down at the table for the first time. My questions are this: What is the quickest way for a player to have their own character sheet in front of them and game ready in the shortest possible time? With the assumption that they can complete it to 100% later after that first session. What is the minimum they need in order to play without me just throwing them a pre-gen?
  11. What I'm curious about is the modus operandi / hierarchy of the Nephilim. Reading through the Penny Dreadfuls that feature them, they are depicted with a variety of aspects: Wild beasts, instinctual savages, cautious opportunists, Cunning masterminds or ruthless leaders. I mean, are they purple humans or is there something deeper? In one PD they are nameless enemies who crave nothing but blood and death and in another they are two lost souls just trying to get home in one piece, hesitant to ask for help. Are they a single unit or does one 'tribe' dislike another for their beliefs? It would be very interesting to find out.
  12. I've implemented a few one-shots into my homebrew campaign to great success. My Fated were part of an artifact collection agency which is really easy for slot-in penny dreadfuls. Where's the next piece? Well it should have shown up by now but we've just found out that a Ms Appleton has intercepted it and killed the delivery man. Infiltrate her mansion and get it back! (I take out the One-shot "Honor Among Thieves). Ms Colette du Bois has offered up one of her collection to be brought back to the agency to be shown in its museum. The catch is, she wants to have it as part of a last show and has invited the fated to be part of it. (I crack open "Night at the Star" one-shot). And so on, names get changed, reasons for being there are slightly off script but the essence of the feeling the penny dreadful is remains intact and really brings forward the idea that the world is massive and varied. It's also a way to get a last minute session prep'd and ready in under an hour haha.
  13. I've always been partial to Yan Lo and Chiaki's design and aesthetics. Great power hidden behind unassuming frailty. Plus the image of Zoraida cursing under her breath trying in vain to attach Yan Lo's beard makes me chuckle.
  14. I ran into this issue in my last campaign, my player had a goal for their character and didn't want to diverge into a different pursuit. This is where Destiny Steps can fill in the gaps. If your player is already dedicating time and advancement to the Torakage path, perhaps offer "Rapid Fire" or something like it as a Manifested Power. If power level is a concern, limit it to the 2nd or 3rd Destiny Step.
  15. I was wondering how Fatemasters and players alike describe Through the Breach to people who play RPGs but haven't heard of either Malifaux or Wyrd. I'm trying my best to get interest stirred up at my local store but my elevator pitch needs work. Other RPGs seem a lot easier to sum up to prospective players, for example: D&D: it's D&D... Blades in the Dark: You're a group of criminals who perform heists in order to establish themselves one-day as the kingpins of a haunted city against other criminal organizations. Feng Shui 2: You're a bunch of action movie archetypes who use movie logic to solve their problems, typically in the most over-the-top, wild and extreme way possible. But then I reach Through the Breach and I stumble: "You play as entities known as the Fated who can cheat their own fate. They travel into Malifaux... oh Malifaux is both the world and the name of the city... by means of a breach.. okay so in the late 1700s... closed for a hundred years... soulstones magic yadda yadda... big train... guild... it uses cards and... oh you have to be somewhere else, no problem, thanks for your time." How would I succinctly describe this game in a snappy interesting way to get new and experienced players alike curious and interested in playing?
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