That sounds like a great plan. I feel like I have a lot to say about this finale and how it interacted with the used rules system. Would it be better to write my own post for you to answer on?
Probably not. If you don’t send it to me somehow I might not see it. Put it in an ask and send it to me. Then again, if you just want to express how you feel about it and don’t need my input, just write up a post and tag it with the #critical hit, and #critical hit podcast, tags. Also make sure you put in a spoilers tag if you’re going to reference things directly.
kickback-artist said: Pathfinder, but one guy ran into the woods and starved to death, and the other guy was killed by a trap.
I don’t think you understood what I was saying. I meant that if your game is thematically LIKE the Walking Dead, then lots of deaths make sense.
Sometimes players make “stupid decisions” because they don’t understand what’s at stake, or how the gameworld-to-mechanics-expressions function. Although a character’s death can bring that point home with the quickness, sometimes it’s worth simply saying “Hey, that’s probably going to turn out badly for you, your character is smart enough to know that.”
Q:Having never played or run a game to remotely the extent of Critical Hit, how does it feel when you bring home a story arc like that? It feels a little like everyone involved would need a bit of decompression time afterwards.
It feels nice to complete a story arc, especially to the sort of reaction the finale has received. Most people reacted how I hoped they would.
But yes, it is emotionally draining, which is why we do the in-between season stuff like the Off-Season and Game Master’s Workshop.
Q:I notice that you don't use puzzles or many non-narrative traps in Critical Hit. Is this a matter of personal style/preference or an adaption for the podcast format?
Q:I've noticed that Critical Hit's approach to hidden information is very binary. If a character is unconscious, not present, etc., you trust the player to roleplay what they should know. I respect that, and the players do a very good job of it. However, there is some information (e.g. Trelle's past adventures and Ket's deal with the/a devil) that appears to be super top secret. Do the other players know any more than we the listeners? Either way, will there be a Critical Hit exposé someday?
I compartmentalize info as much as possible. If I could kick the other players out of the room while, say, Randus is alone, I would. But due to the fact that A) everyone is tethered to the table through headphones and B) they could just as easily hear what happened later when the show airs, I just let them hear it. Now, I don’t try to keep info from them because I don’t trust them to keep player/character knowledge separate, but because I prefer it when players find things out along with their characters.
So, no, stuff that has been discussed off the podcast, like Trelle’s adventures and a few other things are not brought up to the other players.
I’m sure there will be something like an expose, some day. In fact I’ll have an end-of-season article out in a couple of weeks.
Q:What is an acceptable party fatality rate? We're 5 games in and we've downed 2 characters... wondering if I'm making it too difficult. To be fair though, both times they had multiple attempts to make it better but chose dumb every single time.
that depends on the themes of your game. Are you playing The Walking Dead or Star Wars? If you’re currently playing Star Wars and you’ve lost 2 characters already, then you’re doing it wrong.
For those of you who sent me asks about the Critical Hit season finale, I’ll get to them eventually. I don’t want to accidentally spoiler things for people who haven’t had a chance to listen to it.
Q:Through deus ex machina their characters will be given corporeal form in this new world, if they find it... would it be possible to convert them from D&D 4E chars to Shadowrun chars? Obviously some things would get lost in the process, but those would be acceptable losses from a storytelling standpoint.
A continuation of this conversation.
Ok. Step by step:
- I don’t think you’re using deus ex machina correctly, Deus ex machina is a last minute, outside force that fixes things for the protagonists. If you mean that you are going to do it without using an extant rule system, that’s something else. Especially since there are no rules for it, anyway.
- What do you mean “if they find it”? Reverse Tron is kind of a huge thing. If you aren’t moving your players toward the colossal revelation that everything they know to be true is a lie, you are wasting your concept. It’s like if halfway through The Sixth Sense the kid goes to summer camp, he stops talking to Bruce Willis and it becomes a comedic coming of age story where we never find out that twist everyone should know by now.
- Now to your actual question: Yes, of course. But I would focus on making new, balanced Shadowrun peeps that somewhat resemble the old characters, as opposed to making characters that can do everything the D&D guys could do before. Also, as a sidenote, make sure that Shadowrun is what you want to use. Shadowrun is kind of balanced for people to either be supermagic or have robot skeletons, and if you’re not giving your fighter a robot skeleton she is not going to be able to keep up. Also it’s approximately 10,000% more complex and granular of a system than 4e.
Hope that helps, thanks for writing in!