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A jam submission

Viziers of the SunlordView game page

A MicroRPG about cults of personality.
Submitted by SalusExScientiae — 4 hours, 18 minutes before the deadline

Play game

Viziers of the Sunlord's itch.io page

Results

CriteriaRankScore*Raw Score
Story (or Starting Scenario)#163.6673.667
Mechanics#333.2503.250
Setting (or Location)#353.2503.250
Overall#373.1883.188
Use of Theme#762.5832.583

Ranked from 12 ratings. Score is adjusted from raw score by the median number of ratings per game in the jam.

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Comments

Submitted

I love this. I've never played a game with similar mechanics, so this uniqueness is endearing. The only issue I see is the number of players needs to be at least five. Any less and the party is asking for trouble. Four people means the Sunlord will be forced to pick only two people for Vizier positions, unless only one Vizier had any sort of sensible recommendations. Even so, this looks like a lot of fun for a large group or a smaller drinking group.

Developer(+1)

Thanks for the feedback!

Indeed, it's optimized for that many, although I'd be able to see fewer.  If you only have one Vizier, you do of course eliminate any threat of the Vizier being overthrown. Looking back, if I were to add any rule, it'd be that the Sunlord must select at least enough Viziers to overthrow them. If there were more words allowed, I'd have created an organic incentive (losing access to key government features, like, say, an army if no Viziers are appointed to that position). But alas, you are quite right, in the current iteration, it certainly needs a full-size traditional gaming group. That said, this would be madness with even just a few more than five players.

As with much in the world, it would indeed also be more fun intoxicated. 

I greatly appreciate the prophet of the next generation of world entertainment leaving a comment on my humble RPG. Best of luck to you, my favorite internet alpaca.

Submitted(+1)

I love the amount of political maneuvering that is contained withing such a simple mechanic. This seems like a lot of fun, especially if all players are on board with hamfistedly and zealously praising whichever friend has been elevated to the throne.

Developer

Thanks! I'm glad you like it!

Developer

As an addnote, since I didn't have much time to reply more than the general "thanks for caring enough to leave textual feedback," I'd be curious to know if this would be more interesting with or without the pseudo-identities. It would be certainly be more personal if the praise was directed at the actual individual, but it may very well cease to be an RPG. If only more words permitted, I'd have tried to add some traits to help actually characterize those identities, but I'd be curious to know how the game holds up with only the implicit instruction to make whatever identity you'd like.

Submitted(+1)

I really like the identities. By directing it at an individual, I mostly mean that I think this game is at it's best if you're staying fully in character.

Developer

Much agreed.

Submitted(+1)

The promotion system, combined with creating new characters if you're not promoted, makes this feel really special. Thanks for creating!

Developer

Thanks! I'm glad you like it. Good luck with your entry!

Submitted(+1)

I love the mix of politics & myticism; my only issue is with the voting mechanism. I don't see how a player should ever vote against the current Sunlord if that so critically disadvantages them. They have to level up from peasant to vizier, then issue their favored candidate, and then win more than half of the votes to not lose all progress immediately.

I'd also like to know how far-reaching the policies can become. What if someone asks if the Sunlord could be abolished in favor of a two-party system and it somehow goes into effect? Would that just be the end of the game?

Developer(+1)

Thanks for the comment!

The voting mechanism is basically designed to ensure all the uncertainty that a real coup entails. You can make an attempt with just a simple majority, but traitors to the rebels are loyalists to the kings. Replacing a regime requires common sentiment, and with so much power at the tyrant's whims, it's almost impossible to keep the government in check.

In short, I sacrificed a mechanical-fun point for a theme/setting point. Depressing, but reasonably accurate.

The policies may entail all reccomendations for the betterment of the Sunlord's glorious oasis, and that's all the citizenry must know. The game ends only when players get bored.

The actual idea of the endgame is supposed to get a bit like Mao, where the players design better systems but ultimately get caught up in all the possible backstabby incentives that can be provided in the base system.

Submitted(+1)

Oh, I get it. But then the problem remains that that the coups are planned democratically and in plain sight of the leader. If there was a mechanism with the players writing one ode and presenting another as convincingly as possible to smuggle their policies in or writing alternative odes and handing them to each other under the table with the danger of being found out or backstabbed I would get more of an idea of a coup d'etat instead of basically the electoral college, but with murder (which is still cool).

Developer(+2)

Well, the idea was for the absence in the rules to leave room for players to sneakily eye each other during play as much as possible. It would have been nice if I had a few more words to lay out how that looks, but alas, two hundred was yet too few.