The Long Game

I start off by responding to a listener question left on our voicemail at (661) 368-5306 by Johnathan Snyder, who is also one of my Patreon supporters.

Hey, this is Jonathan author of Blood in Space. Hey, I was just listening to your last podcast about the damage factors and just wanted to bring up your response about adding different things in with the damage factors, like taking consideration of a fantasy type game where you know certain things are more immune to certain types of attacks, a lot like what the D20 system does, I was wondering what your thoughts are on how something like that could be implemented. I know I put together one a while ago. But yeah, that’s just pretty much my thought that came to mind when I was listening to your podcast and was wanting to see if you ever want to cover your opinion on modify the damage factors to take any more fantasy setting with monster immunity and so forth like that. So yeah, thanks. I really appreciate your podcast and what you doing as University and I really hope you continue up. I’m continuing to support you and look forward to your next podcast. This is Johnson. I’ll talk to you later. Bye.

Transcribed by Google Voice cleaned up by Me.

I also talk a bit about the Shadowrun Runners Hub and Emerald Grid, which are really neat solutions to the Looking For Group problem faced by gamers. I floated the idea of a similar setup for Fudge, but as many people pointed out the community isn’t quite there yet. Still, I might try something in the vein in the future.

Then the episode moves on to cover some considerations for running long term campaigns with the Fudge system. In the last podcast I asked if folks liked terms like Fudge Master instead of just Game Master, and alot of the feedback showed that there was a real blowback against not just that, but also things like calling your game Fudge X or X Fudge and trying to be cute. I think alot of this has to do with the overall criticism the system receives that its more suited for one-shots and convention games than for serious play. In this episode I discuss the +1 Problem, the issues with the default XP system, and ways to allow for character development without focusing on simply raising attributes and skills. I also throw in a new money-instead-of-XP idea I’ve been working on.

Please reach out to me with your Fudge (or Fate/Icons) Pages, Podcasts, Content, and Blogs. I’m going to create Podcast, Resource, and Blogroll pages for them to act as a central resource.

If you like what I’m doing and you want to support the show please share it with your friends, rate and review it on services like Itunes and Stitcher, and if you really like what I’m doing consider supporting me over on patreon.com/PlusorMinus

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5 thoughts on “The Long Game

  1. I have never gotten ‘Fudge Points for Experience’ to work with any group. Most of the players would hoard them instead of spending _any_ on doing cool things. Also, if someone was unlucky and needed to use a fudge point to survive, they felt cheated when it came time to get experience.

    We usually ended up adopting a ‘milestone’ type system of advancement. After a major arc some skills could be rearranged and some (a smaller amount) could be improved based on the types of skills they had been using in the game.

    Once the players realize that the characters were created at a level where they are competent at their jobs (and not a sheepherder fresh off the farm) it tends to work well.

    1. Haha I’m pretty sure that’s normal for any game system for people to hoard their points. Don’t want to need them and waste them so they end up just never using them. Limiting the max amount of points in other systems helps that so they can spend and earn back to the overall total again.

  2. If you are looking for Fudge game to cover, may I suggest a look at Cyberblues City Deluxe. Complete, self-contained, highly-customised Fudge game with gonzo future London settings. And its Free. https://ukrpdc.wordpress.com/2018/01/15/cyberblues-city-deluxe/

    As for you general point In Cyberblues City XP buys you more Gifts. As all the Gifts are pre-designed there technically a limit after a player character had bought every single Gift in the game, but I can’t imagine anyone ever getting there.

  3. I’m curious if you’ve studied the advancement system in Psi-punk? My design goal was specifically to have advancement opportunities for long games, and I feel like it does a good job striking a balance between too slow and too fast.

    I think the longest campaign I ran with Psi-punk was about 8 sessions. I handed out 2 to 3 Build Points each session. A single Gift costs 5 BP, but skills advance using a progressive scale.

    Honestly, it borrows a lot from other systems but I think that’s part of what makes it work.

    I’m super interested in your idea to use money as an advancement option for your cyberpunk game. It makes a lot of sense. I do worry about players not wanting to spend money on other things for fear of feeling cheated out of XP, but if that hurdle could be overcome (possibly by making certain acquisitions a skill roll rather than a wealth expenditure) I think it could work.

    1. The trick to prevent hoarding when you have resource (like money or Hero Points) that also act as XP is to put into the rules that you only get to spend the XP for advancement once you’ve used the related resource. Barbarians of Lemuria is the first system I came across that did this. In BoL you gain Advancement Points by explaining how your character squanders all the treasure gained the previous adventure.

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