Thank you! It was very much inspired by The Southern Reach Trilogy and similar stories.
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In order to kill a King each card in the payload must match the suit. It doesn’t matter if one card exceeds the health if the other isn’t also a heart or wild.
The number for ICE remains static throughout the game. If you’d like an additional challenge you can always augment that rule and see how it goes.
Hello! Thanks for playing!
Yes, the hole in the middle of the matrix is a free space where you can place any card (to start) and then follow rules for placement as normal. The rule about royals is I think a typo, it should say royals of each suit, so yes you need to kill all Jacks, Queens, and Kings. If you do end up doing a French translation please let me know!
Incredible. Absolutely incredible. I knew next to nothing going in and then I wanted to know absolutely everything once I finished. I want to make this game central in my thinking of what video games can be, but that still won't give it the credit it deserves.
In a world that too often equates frames per second and stereotypical characters with quality, Sagebrush and it's lo-fi aesthetic proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that unforgettable video games can just be beautiful rather than expensive.
Thanks so much for the kind words about my game, I really appreciate it. I'm planning on having the game be content complete by the end of this year, and so far I'm on track to achieve that.
Excellent question. I've actually played with this sort of complication before in Scum & Villainy, another Blades in the Dark hack. The way I treated it there was as an ongoing complication that I could use when the character got less than a 6 on an action roll. When it felt appropriate I would give the player harm based on their addiction: dizziness, exhaustion, nausea, etc. I also started a clock where their addiction would replace their vice, which I could tick as a result of Devil's Bargains or further complications.
You could use similar methods in Neon Black. The character could also rid themselves of this addiction by completing a long-term project.
I assumed the group has already had this conversation, but I would also double-check and make sure that everyone at the table was on board with this complication being included in the story. Addiction and substance abuse can be very uncomfortable for people to experience in a fictional setting, so make sure everyone is being safe and happy!
Oh wow. I've been recently thinking about just such an RPG, something messy and grungy about falling into/exploring other dimensions and alternate realities. I may just use this as inspiration or the basis for a hack. Thank you!
If I had to start my whole experience in tabletop RPGs again I would want to start with this game. Light rules that perfectly capture the joy in telling a story and rolling dice to find out what happens. Ideal for suburban dramas, supernatural mysteries, or any setting inspired by the communities we inhabit.
I'm pretty happy with my first submission. There's lots of work left to do if the next person wishes, and a pretty strong thesis of what I think the game is about.
I was lucky that I came upon an idea that I was genuinely excited for early on, and I actually wrestled a little bit with the idea of submitting it to this particular jam. What if other people don't think it's a good idea and decide to do something completely different? What if it ends up looking like something I wouldn't want to play? But I think I'd rather submit something I'm genuinely excited for than feel like I have no skin in the game. Genuinely excited to see what it looks like at the end of all this.
I think it's probably best to start with something solid for this first stage rather than some loose fitting parts. Makes it easier to edit and change things in the later rounds. And that idea doesn't necessarily have to be the parts for an entire game! Maybe it's just a setting or a character class or a way of generating random factions. Hope that helps!
I'm putting together my seed of a game idea for the first round, excited to see how other people run with it. Some questions that came to mind today:
What happens to games that are not completed? Say a game makes it through round two but the third person fails to submit something on time. Will the other two participants be notified at the end? What about if the second person in the chain fails to submit something by the deadline?
MATR1X 0VERL0AD is a cyberpunk solitaire game based on Gridcannon by Tom Francis.
You’ll use a standard set of playing cards, jokers loaded, to lay out a grid representing the internet and surround it with royal cards that represent your targets. You’ll stack cards by order of their value on the grid, representing your efforts as a hacker to try to kill your targets, avoid ICE, and get out alive.
A Few Degrees of Warming is a hack of The Quiet Year by Avery Alder. It is a role playing game about a familiar city radically altered by climate change. Narrate the the life of a coastal city as it struggles to overcome the many challenges presented by global warming. Work together to draw a map of the city and redraw it as it changes due to warmer and warmer temperatures.
When I started designing playbooks for my BitD hack I started with the originals and basically renamed all the special abilities, actions, and items to things that were more representative of my setting. Since my setting didn't have anything that could be considered ghosts, spirits or demons, I had to make a few special abilities from scratch and slot them in to make up the difference.
Afterwords when I got to be more comfortable with with game and my setting I started remaking the playbooks from scratch. A big help with this was finalizing all the rules changes I was making to the BtD system. Playbooks essentially allow each character to bend and break the rules of the game, so I needed to know what those rules were, including what I was adding and what I was leaving out. Also it was handy knowing what the standard items and playbook items where available to each playbook so there wouldn't be too much overlap between different playbook items, and what the items let you do and what special abilities each playbook had.
For me, making a cyberpunk hack, I thought a lot about genre tropes and the sorts of characters you see in those stories and what it was about them that moved the plot forward or provided interesting opportunities and actions within the story. Obviously there would be a Hacker playbook, and also someone who was good with hardware. Then there's the suit or ex-corporate person who is good at setting up meetings and lying to people, etc. etc. Once I knew what sort of character I wanted each playbook to represent, then I would start assigning starting action dots that made sense for the sorts of actions that character would be doing most of the time. The Hacker wants to be good at Hacking, the Fighter wants to be good at Assault, the Hustler wants to be good at Connecting with people, etc. Then I would brainstorm some special playbook items they should have: The Hacker should have a fine custom computer and some special armor that protects them from harm when they hack. Oh, and you know what would be cool? Cyberpunk films often have awesome soundtracks so lets give this playbook a custom soundtrack item that lets them set the mood for whatever is happening during the scene.
For me special abilities represent a few distinct possibilities:
- Get a bonus die or increased effect in a limited context.
- Use special armor to push yourself or avoid a consequence suitable to what that character is usually doing
- Some kind of bonus (+1d, increased effect, or fill in additional clock segments) towards at least one downtime activity
- Permission to twist or change the narrative
This is pretty much what you've already covered. Some special abilities are evergreen, like the Cutter's ability "Not to be Trifled With". Most hacks I've seen have an ability like that or something close to it, because you want your fighter to be able to tangle with a lot of people at once. That's cool. Don't feel like you need to redesign the wheel with each playbook, there's a lot of solid structure you can build around.
Honestly it already feels like you have a pretty good handle on how to make a playbook. The only advice I would give is to think about what you want each character to do in the narrative of the game and not just in the mechanics, and to make sure you integrate any rules changes you've made into the design of the playbooks and special abilities, if appropriate.
She explains that the hated king has dispatched his champion. They await outside the sacred site of bones, at the edge of the Gray Hills. The champion has drawn a circle and is challenging you to single combat.
Sent in my email (from a notwriting.net account, so you know it's me). Thanks again for this jam. I think the rating system was a great idea, definitely motivated me to play and review games when I otherwise wouldn't, and found some really great stuff as a result.
Spooky Action at a Distance is a single player tabletop role playing game about humanity’s first contact with alien life. You create a character, called the envoy, who will attempt to interact with the alien. You’ll write about First Contact, what the envoy discovers about the alien, and define the alien as you play.
- Players: 1
- Playtime: 1-2 hours
- Requires 2 six-sided dice and a journal to write in (printable journal sheets are provided with the game)
I made this for the Me, Myself, and my RPG Game Jam, and I'm really proud of it!