Game Design: Story V

By 03/01/2018Game Design

Now listening to: the shattering sound of realizing I’m not topping SEO on my own words

Welcome to Dixie’s! What would you like your toast with? Peanut butter, or jam? Do¬†you like your coffee black? Great. Coming right up…

Freedom is overrated. If the waitress at Dixie’s were to ask you what do you want in the whole wide world, you’d probably collapse in a puddle of indecision. So they constrain your choices to something more manageable, like food. Breakfast, and not even all kinds of breakfast. Coffee and a couple options for toast. We’d rather have the illusion of freedom than real, actual freedom.

So the machine takes care of a map, the structures, the NPCs and their goals. With a little trimming from the DM, something worth playing can take shape really fast. What the DM needs is to manage the sessions into a story with a solid interest curve. Creating opposing factions is a surefire way to ramp up the drama easily. Connections also go a long way in creating tension, scaling involvement into the realm of the personal. Now the DM needs to make the stakes as high as the story needs them to be.

… remember to dole out rewards for helping people, lest players devolve into raiding marauders. NPCs can be complicit in your scheming. They can be your greatest allies in providing motivation, so use them to subtly drive players in the directions you may want.

#79 Freedom

#80 Help

#81 Indirect Control

#82 Collusion

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