Play-testing: Supernatural Seattle

Major inspirations: Urban Myths, Harry Dresden, World of Darkness, and other similar things.

I don’t know what being an alpha of a beta is, but this is definitely that. :) The concept is a modern supernatural game and this is mostly the demo of it as I start to get more familiar with the tools. Right now, just character creation is done, and the lead off the first story is in place to give a sense of where things are going.

There is just one sometimes card right now, and it’s not particularly interesting.

This demo story will end once a character gets to “Clued in” at 5, which would result in the player receiving one of the 3 planned endings. For the ‘fully-leaded’ version of the game, that would be just the start of the game.

To Do:

[ul][li]Flesh out first story. [/li][li]- I need to organize and plan out some 4-5 plot structures.[/li][li]Add some basic resource and at least 1 way to use it. [/li][li]Add some sometimes encounters.[/li][li]- I am planning two structured stories that are seeded by qualities gained from sometimes cards.[/li][/ul]Notes:

  • There is a perpetual card to kill yourself to reset. [/li][li]Recommend being a business exec at least once.


Jeff Vandenberg
edited by jeff_vandenberg on 8/2/2012

There are quite a few typos here and there. In particular, “Wandering the streats”. I also noticed that punctuation was spotty in places.

There’s not much at the moment, but seems reasonably interesting.

Thanks for the catch. I am useless without an editor. :)

My focus is really just trying to get some measure of organized structure and start to flesh it out. I’ve had a lot of ideas floating around and my friends are trying to help me just get digital pen to virtual paper. :)

I seem to have gotten myself into a corner where I had no options for continuing and had never gotten any “clued in” quality. I picked being a woman, an exec, and having gone out the night before. My only card options are now “Wandering the Streets” and “Go to…”

Is that as far as it goes right now?

This is a splendid start. I’m looking forward to seeing more.

Caity: Yeah. It’s basically just character creation with the qualities that would allow you to go out and start the first sets of stories. Your character at this point is still clueless… bumbling around the city, not knowing what they are getting themselves into yet.

Nigel: Thanks. :) Will start to tackle it one story at a time. I was reviewing the wiki and the topics in it has me looking back at my design document and reworking some ideas. All in a good way.

General Observation: One thing that I am really coming to appreciate much more is that the opportunities deck is hard. Or at least that having opportunities come up that seem like they mesh and flow with the rest of the things that your character has going on.

The Sometimes deck does need a bit of planning, yeah.

You probably want at least a dozen cards in there, so you don’t get the same thing coming up every time. And you need a branch on each with no requirements, so that the card can always be played and doesn’t end up clogging up the hand.

Have a look at what we did with Cabinet Noir in the day deck - I’m not saying that that’s the only or the right way to do a sometimes deck, but it’s an approach that works.

I’ve played through Cabinet Noir a couple of times and the day deck did have some things that were interesting. I’ve also done some Fallen London but stopped around level 70-80 or so due to other commitments.

I’m mapping out cards cards for the event deck as being by the following:

  1. Random Encounter (a one shot storylet unconnected to anything else)
  2. Random Story (Like an encounter, but played out longer through sometimes cards).
  3. Encounter for story (An always card needs a quality granted by a sometimes card).
  4. Bonus Resources (A sometimes card that can give extra resources than an available always card.)
  5. Resource Conversion (subset of random encounters (Mr. Wine would be an example))

Obviously, that’s a lot to tackle all at once, but it helps organize my thinking about storylets and lets me try to roughly balance what sorts of cards are available in a sometimes deck. Cabinet Noir relied heavily on the “Encounter for Story” to grind out resources to be able to play the always available story cards.

[quote=Nigel Evans]
Have a look at what we did with Cabinet Noir in the day deck - I’m not saying that that’s the only or the right way to do a sometimes deck, but it’s an approach that works.[/quote]

Speaking of Cabinet Noir can I get a link to it or is it now out yet?


That’s a pretty good summary. There are (many!) other potential uses, but that’s a good list. And a single card could have branches for any or all of these purposes, so you can mix and match. So if you have a Market card, you could have a branch to get resources, another to exchange resources, a third to continue the ongoing marketplace romance story, etc.

Cabinet Noir is very nearly out. If all goes to plan and the Kickstarter madness doesn’t throw things off (and it might), it’ll be a matter of days rather than weeks.
edited by Goatdance on 8/7/2012

Just sayin’.

A thought: You have a deprecated branch in ‘Wandering the Streets’ which is visible to players. You should add a requirement of Key of Dreams 1 or Impossible! 1 to that to hide it.

This is before I’m going back to the beginning and trying a different root. :)

Lily: Yup. Fixed that. I hadn’t realized that BVWRF was set per requirement, so it led me to believing I had set it when, in fact, it was not. It’s now fixed.

Nigel: Goal set. :D Now to start making more content, or at least getting it from design document to the webpage.

Cross post:

I’m experiencing some problems trying to set an event for an item. Is that not working or am I missing something? I am copying in the title of the story: “Read Paper” into the field for the linked event for the “Scrap of Paper” Thing. When I go into my play mode, my scraps of paper aren’t clickable.

Quick playtest on this: It feels less like a story and more like a Fighting Fantasy Book. I don’t get a feeling of anything other than what I’m being told about my character - there’s no attachment to my character.

I also don’t get a feel for Seattle. Having a place like Harry Dresden’s Thirteen Bar for the start would be much better in giving you an image of Seattle and yourself.

I don’t really care about typo that much, but you might to fix this particular one because it is the first card a player see and you shouldn’t greet them with a typo :)

Now that we’ve turned monetization on, worlds like this one that have playtesting threads can request if they’re ready.

You can work out whether a world is ready for monetizing here: