in the Shadow of Greatness


October 8, 2003

'Sticky' Serial Games

Strangely enough, I've blended three different thoughts about recent ideas noted here. Forgive the title, we can always change it. We want characters to affect each other regardless of how long they are part of the story. We want sticky backstory and relationships. An example from Argent Rose was Maximillian. He was in one game, but PCs talk about him still.

We have important points to share about a multi-GM design:

  • success will prompt new/more players to try the game (attention to detail backstory precludes large play groups, but not large cast)
  • premise needs to include Amber canon, but with a 'spine' that allows many, many PCs to hop in and out of the story seamlessly (wow, tough one)
  • no single GM will determine a PC's fate (does this mean Players will suggest the dramatic turns? unlikely but possible)
  • no single GM may change canon elements (see JP's amusing take on this)
  • PCs live in the same universe, expect the same understanding of it (note how this affects both ability to tell stories and amount of drama any GM can lean on, over-the-top stories are a concensus design, not a GM perogative)
  • Trump communication and shadow shifting to other PCs should have a dramatic limit (other Players not present cannot enter story; or Players allow PCs may make cameos under GM's hand)
  • keeping the serial fresh is highly challenging given deliberate self-imposed limits

I guess I can add to above as things are suggested.

Story elements:

  • play group 4 to 6 to 8
  • reason not to communicate? no cards? no shadow? no royals (but then is it classic Amber?)
  • several GMs and several cons: is it likely to limit cast size? three or four cons a year, with three GMs handling five players could be fifty players very fast. The singluarity and legends of Amber argue against such a large number of royals. Hmmm.

    Filed under : Amber, Muse at 08.10.2003