Thursday, November 30, 2017

Okay, next learning step: soap opera

SYSTEM: ICONS

I think the Drop-In went well. I think I'm at the point where I can reliably put forth a three hour game session, where there's enough combat that doesn't overwhelm the players and force us to go to another session.

But the sessions have been largely combat. So the next learning step is soap opera.

Not a huge amount of soap opera, but a chance to bring in supporting characters. To a certain extent, this has been organic in that the players get to be dramatic with the NPCs as they investigate or prepare to fight, which is good.

What I want to try now is creating opportunities with appropriate supporting characters, and that requires either knowing who is coming (sort of difficult for a Drop In game) or building something in, like the base staff. I deliberately went for an environment where the base is superfluous, so that option was out.

So my intent now is to provide opportunities to interact with NPCs: Find a logical reason to include an NPC, preferably one who triggers a Quality, and see how the players respond. If they seem interested in anything, expand that character's screen time to create modular subplots.

For instance, Gold Tiger has essentially the Tony Stark collection of Qualities. I could certainly include a session from the major domo or HR person about these people who get hired, or I could bring one of them back. Diriel as a Demon of Justice is a bit harder, but I could certainly do next session about some occult threat and introduce an occultist. New character Lum will need to have a counsellor developed, and there's an opportunity there.

Nothing big...my grasp on timing is still tenuous so I don't want to blow it out of the water.

And I want to respect the players' wishes, too: if they want it to be mostly tactical, or mostly soap opera, that's the direction I should go (at least so far as I'm comfortable; I count, too).