Sorry, todays blog post is going to be short.
So I was watching Reddit's interview with John Wick and he mentioned something when talking about mechanics he doesn't like. Namely the concept of Dire Peril. Basically, in his games you can't die. Your character will not die in a scene, even if you mess up, unless he has called Dire Peril on the scene.
It is an interesting concept, one that I think speaks to what Wick has been trying to express in his view of games lately. Narrative control, telling a story. That means protecting your main characters. However, I also want to note that what he is doing is different from what I said before of simply not killing PCs. There is still a risk to failure, your character can be maimed or injured in some way (losing a finger, losing an eye, etc). Also, there are parts in the story where you can die. Those parts are however told to you, and he uses that to increase the tension in those scenes.
I personally am curious as to how this would work in a game run by someone aside from John Wick. Could I pull it off? Would it have the same meaning or would it clash with my style? I am intrigued by it. Permission to maim, if only in small ways, in exchange for safety from death aside from in specific pre-called for ways. I think I may have to try it at some point soon, perhaps in the next game I run. Or maybe something to incorporate into my Greymoore game where I am specifically going for that feeling.
Either way, you should check out the interview. The first video can be found below.
I feel like all of John Wicks systems are very much something that works best with a certain style of GMing. In L5R 1st Edition death was always around the corner. Not only was it around the corner, it was looking for you and you were looking for it. Wounding was constant and death was easy, but being maimed, that didn't usually happen.ReplyDelete
In his newer systems focused more on the narrative it is as you said the opposite.
For me as a GM given that I run fairly gritty games, if not dark, mortality being ever present is a good thing. For me it isn't something I have to say "This scene is one you could die in." For me as both player and GM I like it to be possible to die at any time.
I don't think the new systems are a negative direction, they just don't fit my style as you put it. That said there are definitely things I think are worth taking from the new systems and some of the stylistic ideas are fun. For instance, when do people get maimed in modern systems? I mean it happened all the time in systems with crit charts, but since there aren't rules for it these days it usually doesn't happen. I kinda miss crippling injuries.
Sorry for the rambling comment.