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Ken Petti

A member registered Mar 25, 2020 · View creator page →

Creator of

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Thanks for the great feedback, I've gone back and addressed the points you've made. Hope that helps if you end up taking another look at it.

This commented posted twice so I deleted one, FYI.

Thanks for the glowing review! Regarding playing as agents, when I initially conceived of this project, the PCs would be witting or unwitting participants in the experiments. I shied away from that for a couple of reasons:

  1. It's based on a real thing, and MKUltra was pretttty messed up. There was a lot of unethical/inhumane behavior (like dosing prisoners every day for 77 days straight, blackmailing participants, etc.), and some participants were really messed up from that. Roleplaying someone who didn't consent to the experiments could potentially be interesting but IMO would require a very delicate approach. I still pose the question "was joining the project your decision?" but asking that of a super-spy has a little bit of a different feel than asking a student or a prisoner IMO.
  2. I wanted the traits to have a "before experiments" and "after experiments," for a more well-rounded character. No one was just 100% LSD powers or spy powers. On a closer look, FIST's core traits assume a certain level of expertise, which I felt a random civilian participant wouldn't have going into the experiments.
  3. I really wanted to bring in the James Bond spy element, since I think it's an interesting contrast to the hippie acid trip scene. I haven't seen a lot of media that mixes these, so having the players be super-spies kind of helps balance out the two genre elements.

Hope that provides some insight into that design consideration. I was thinking about introducing an alternative background, like "another way to play" as an appendix that would propose civilian backgrounds. Maybe that'd be worth putting together.

Thanks again for your review!

Hi there! There is a TTRPG hackathon starting shortly where the rule is to hack games submitted to the  One-Page Game Jam 2020/2021. As I was looking through submissions, I saw this one and thought it could work for my concept. Two questions though:

1. Is this writing letters based, like the book?

2. Is this licensed for hacking?


(1 edit)

Thanks for your thoughtful  comment, and the work you’ve done with Team Rubicon. I can understand what you mean, and it was something I wrestled with. Based on some research,  I think some of the scenarios I had in mind are more extreme than real-world missions, and could warrant security (ex. deployed in the midst of a civil war). Those scenarios are the exception, however. I also made an effort to downplay combat. The security role is the only one that overtly mentions a weapon, and compared to the other roles I think it’s the most basic, so I think there is less incentive to pick it. Finally, I hoped that the incentive to focus on constructive community relationship building would push players to less aggressive solutions. 

Those are roughly the considerations I made when developing the game. That being said, I’d love to hear your thoughts on a role that could replace the security role without stepping on another. Maybe you have more insight from your experience? Obviously there is always the choice to not use that role when running the game, but if there is a change I can make to better represent the inspiring groups, I’d certainly consider it.

Thanks again for your feedback!