Darcy Ross

Author's details

Name: Darcy Ross
Date registered: August 13, 2016
URL: http://198.255.211.209

Latest posts

  1. Cypher Speak Episode 20: Dinosaurs and Lore of Future-Past — October 9, 2017
  2. Cypher Speak Episode 18: C’mon, Fight me! — September 11, 2017
  3. Cypher Speak Episode 17: Cypher Friends at Gen Con — August 28, 2017
  4. Cypher Speak Episode 11: Level Up Your XP — May 29, 2017
  5. Cypher Speak Episode 10: Flavors Galore — May 15, 2017

Most commented posts

  1. Cypher Speak Episode 18: C’mon, Fight me! — 3 comments
  2. Cypher Speak Episode 7: Gods of the Fall – Shifting Into Divine Gear — 2 comments
  3. Cypher Speak Episode 20: Dinosaurs and Lore of Future-Past — 1 comment
  4. Cypher Speak Episode 1: Pardon Our Intrusion — 1 comment
  5. Cypher Speak Episode 17: Cypher Friends at Gen Con — 1 comment

Author's posts listings

Oct 09 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 20: Dinosaurs and Lore of Future-Past

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Troy & Darcy talk about the lore and science and people (and dinosaurs!) of Predation! There is so much setting material to love.

(PS: If you get an episode that is mysterious and only 3 minutes long, please re-download ūüôā

Highlights

  • Predation‘s timeline

  • Time anomalies
  • Dinosaur diversity
  • Grevakc history
  • Organizations: Butterflies & SATI
  • Extinction Risk: 100% (Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event)
  • Peculiar Books products via the Cypher System Creator Program by Megan & Aser Tolentino of the Redacted Files Podcast
  • Troy – CypherCaster Magazine. CypherCasters is looking for new contributors. Contact Dani Neary (@ImperialScum) or send an email to: Submissions@Cyphercast.net
  • Darcy – Ellomyr Fiction in the Numenera 2 Kickstarter Comments, Cypher Live

What are your hottest tips? Tweet at us or comment!


Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show or anything in the CypherSphere!

Thanks for all the support so far!

Sep 11 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 18: C’mon, Fight me!

Troy & Darcy plot how to run epic boss fights in the Cypher System!

(PS: If you get an episode that is mysterious and only 3 minutes long, please re-download ūüôā

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Highlights/Shoutouts:

What are your hottest tips? Tweet at us or comment!


Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show or anything in the CypherSphere!

Thanks for all the support so far!

Aug 28 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 17: Cypher Friends at Gen Con

Warning: this is rambly, and there is a minor SPOILER for the Predation adventure Cawdor Complex at 15:44-16:00.

Troy & Darcy just returned from Gen Con and break down their experiences (Cypher & otherwise) while still slightly beset by the tail end of bronchitis, con crud, and eclipse madness.

The major reveal was Numenera 2: Discovery and Destiny! It’s not quite a new edition, but a shine-up and expansion of the core game experience into two corebooks. Numenera Discovery will serve much the same purpose as the existing corebook, but Numenera Destiny will bring tools to your table to facilitate community building, crafting, and not just looking back on the wonders of the past, but creating a world worthy of the “Ninth World” title. Also, everything is forwards compatible! We’re really excited. More to come!

Torment: Tides of Numenera – the Explorer’s Guide went home with the silver ENnie award for Best Cover Art – it’s an amazing piece by ¬†Chang Yuan.

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Shoutouts:

Did you go to Gen Con? Play any Cypher System games? Will you be coming next year?


Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show or anything in the CypherSphere!

Thanks for all the support so far!

May 29 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 11: Level Up Your XP

CS-blank-250x250-webThe most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious

-Albert Einstein.

Darcy & Troy discuss the many uses of XP in the Cypher System, from the usual things like re-rolls & tiering up to things like adding narrative flavor, modifying Numenera, establishing NPC contacts or houses, and more.

Short-term Benefits:

  • The Cypher System Rulebook lists the following ideas for short-term benefits:
    • 1 XP: Re-roll any die roll, Decline a GM Intrusion
    • 2 XP: Gain training in a very focused skill, Gain short term use of an item or ability
  • Our other ideas:
    • 1 XP: Narrative flavor for a single scene
      • The shopkeeper has a tell that allows you to negotiate a better price.
      • You just happen to have a crowbar in your bag for opening this chest.
      • Modify the way a cypher works, staying with the original use of the device, but stretching it a little bit.
      • There is particular lighting in this warehouse fight that makes your character look really cool
    • 2 XP: Narrative flavor that lasts a bit longer
      • Characters are able to modify or add a new ability to an artifact, perhaps with a drawback kor additional depletion effects.
      • Recruit a friendly NPC that will help out the group for a short period of time, or is an expert in a specific field.
      • A temporary safe house.

Long-term Benefits:

  • The Cypher System Rulebook lists the following ideas for long-term benefits:
    • Familiarity: +1 to the die roll of a given task
    • Contact: Someone helpful to the party that can assist them over a period of time.
    • Home: A residence to call home.
    • Title: A title
    • Wealth: Characters come into some money
    • Artifact: Create an artifact
  • Some of our ideas:
    • Long-term¬†benefits should have a long and impactful effect on your campaign.
      • Allow players to bring in someone from their backstory as a contact.
      • Modify an existing artifact to have additional properties. Sort of a legacy weapon feel, so you have an item that grows with you.
      • That creature you formed a bond with permanently becomes your companion animal.
      • Your tinkering with that device/piece of Numenera allows you to permanently have a Google Glass-like HUD that tells you some extra information of things you look like (Horizon Zero Dawn‚Äôs scan ability, for instance)
    • Refunds.¬†If players invest in a long-term benefit and for some reason it’s not applicable anymore, you should consider refunding the XP they invested, or some portion of it.
      • Maybe the contact did work out. Maybe the Title became hollow, Maybe the GM burned your home to the ground. If for whatever reason something you invested 3 XP in no longer has value, or is taken away, think about softening the blow with additional XP. These types of things should be GM Intrusions at least, and Troy¬†would consider giving a bonus XP to the affected player.

Poddities

How do you use your XP in a Cypher System Game?  Let us know your thoughts!


Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show or anything in the CypherSphere!

Thanks for all the support so far!

May 15 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 10: Flavors Galore

CS-blank-250x250-webTaste the rainbow.¬†Darcy & Troy¬†deliciously discuss the character option mechanic “flavors,” introduced in the Cypher System Rulebook; how to use them, how to make new ones, and some of the coolest¬†new ones we can think of.

Flavors:

  • Schtick: Packages of abilities you can select from¬†instead¬†of your Type abilities so that you flavor that Type a little differently.
  • In the¬†Cypher System Rulebook¬†(CSR) are four base Types: Warrior, Adept, Explorer, and Speaker, and five¬†flavors¬†with which to modify them:
    • Stealth, Tech, Magic, Combat, and Skills and Knowledge

Using Flavors:

  • Gamemaster makes custom types for the campaign, selecting¬†type &¬†flavor combinations for the players to choose from. There is a Campaign Design Sheet in the CSR that lets you write out your custom types and delineate suggested Foci and Descriptors that make sense for your setting, which is helpful to communicate to the players what kinds of stories you’re intending to help tell.
    • Cypher Harry Potter: Perhaps give all the Types a magic Flavor so everyone can use magic, but perhaps also some basic abilities like Onslaught – making some kind of magic shoot out of your want to hit things.
  • For players,¬†anytime you get a Type ability (as an Advancement or as you Tier up), you can opt to choose off your Flavor list instead of your Type list. It’s never forced, but it’s an option!
  • Commitment Issues.¬†It seems natural to be able to add a flavor later on if you’re starting from a “vanilla” or base Type. If you see your character turning more stealthy, this is a great way to easily support the character that emerges. Good for people who have trouble with commitment *cough*¬†Darcy.

Creating Your Own Flavors:

  • Easiest way: Steal abilities from other Types of the same Tier, to easily keep the rough balance in line.
    • Lots to choose from, outside of the four base Types in the CSR!
      • 3 in the Numenera Corebook: glaive, nano, and jack
      • 2 additional Numenera Types in Character Options 2: glint and seeker
      • 3 Types in the Strange Corebook: vector, paradox, and spinner
      • 4 Types in the Gods of the Fall setting: champion, shaper, destroyer, and savior.¬†These¬†are all flavored Types from the CSR, so there are not really new abilities from which to steal. They are good examples of creative ways to remix Types, however!
      • More Types coming from the other Cypher System Worlds: Predation (releasing soon!) and Unmasked.
  • Second easiest way:¬†Reskin abilities to fit your flavor. Turn Onslaught from a force blast into shooting a fire arrow. Where a Glint convinces someone to do something with the¬†Complete Lunacy ability, but if you steal that ability for a Warrior, perhaps it is done via Intimidation, and perhaps is powered by points from the Might pool.
  • Beyond that, feel absolutely free to craft your own packages of abilities and skills to make the flavor you want. The above options are just the shortcuts ūüôā

Our Ideas for Flavors:

  • Small: built for small creatures like Hobbitses! Perhaps bonuses to stealth, bonuses to hitting a bigger creature. Jeremy Land also wrote an excellent essay in CypherCaster Issue 4 talking about this exactly! Go buy it here, the whole issue is fabulous.
  • Mundane: This flavor removes everything that smacks of having a power, and replaces it with things we use in our everyday lives as everyday people. Perfect for sitcom storytelling. Onslaught became skinned as an ability where someone used jargon so overwhelmingly that the target gave in to the demands of the assailant.

Shout-outs:

  • FLAVORTOWN: “Flavortown is a game about community, competition, and American Myth.”¬†Check out this¬†amazing, quick micro RPG¬†by Quinn Wilson called Flavortown, inspired by¬†shows that involve a lone folk hero visiting diners and other establishments, accepting the dishes crafted by nervous artisans hoping to impress the fiery folk hero.
  • Conan the Salaryman: an inspiring mashup.
  • Jeremy Land’s wonderful essay,¬†Races in a Cypher System Game, in the magazine CypherCaster Issue 4, tells you exactly how to use flavors to represent your species instead of taking the place of your adjective, so you can still be a Feisty Argonian Maid [Type] who Blushes Madly, or you can be a Bashful Lizard-person¬†Warrior who Never Says Die.

Poddities

  • Troy: Honing his¬†storytelling craft through the Misdirected Mark episode 249 – Lay¬†Down the Beat… Structure, which draws on the book Hamlet’s Hit Points by Robin D. Laws that ports screenwriting beat analysis techniques to roleplaying games.
  • Darcy: Cypher System’s supplement¬†Expanded Worlds is out now! It doesn’t have¬†new¬†flavors, but it does give you some recipes for custom Type/Flavor combos you may want to try out for playing in the different genres the book lays out: Post-apocalyptic, Mythological, Fairy Tale, Childhood Adventure, Historical, Crime & Espionage, and Hard Science Fiction. A bunch of the Foci from this book are¬†amaaaazing¬†too – highly recommended. I immediately swapped out my Gods of the Fall Focus to “is Hunted by Moths” from this book!

Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show or anything in the CypherSphere!

Thanks for all the support so far!

May 01 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 9: Numenera’s Marine Factions – The Beach Episode

CS-blank-250x250-webUnder the sea.¬†Darcy & Troy¬†discuss two of Numenera’s delightful aquatic organizations, the piratical Red Fleet and the underwater city guardian-scientists, the Conflux. Both organizations inspire countless adventure hooks and can be pitted against the party or in cahoots¬†with the party¬†with equal pleasure.

The Red Fleet:

  • Schtick: Pirate/explorers who eschew¬†man-made/Numenera artifacts and seek out natural wonders of the sea with their mystiously-grown “submergines”
  • Described in the Numenera Core Book

The Conflux:

  • Schtick: Respected guardians and caretakers of underwater cities that hold breathable air, they seek Numenera to help them in this important duty.
  • Described in Character Options 2, and references the oceia (underwater cities)¬†and¬†races detailed in Into the Deep and the glimmer Octopi of the Ninth World.
  • Question to the listeners: What’s extra weird about the Brine Hierarch?! Is she a lich?

Shout-outs:

  • “There is no peace, there is only FASHION.”¬†A take-off on the Sith Code, this sentiment echo’s Darcy’s strong assertion that the most important aspect of a faction is their fashion. The Mandalorians of Star Wars have cute-fancy armor, the Aeon Priests of Numenera have their silly orange robes, and bisexuals have their magical invisibility cloaks. It Is Known. This is a favored saying of Maddie Ray‘s, who is an amazing audio editor when she’s not literally being Rey from The Force Awakens or being a professional photographer or being generally amazing in every way. It is also a¬†fabulous¬†occasional segment on Never Tell Me The Pods, the best Star Wars podcast on the HoloNet and supportable on Patreon!
  • The Protector of Concord Dawn (Star Wars Rebels Season 2 Episode 13) is about trying to secure a hyperspace route for the Rebellion that is currently held by Mandalorians… via diplomacy! ūüėĬ†Darcy gets a ton of inspiration for Numenera through the Clone Wars and Rebels animated Star Wars series.

Poddities

  • Troy: Blue Planet by Jeff Barber. Inspiring RPG worth reading even if just to steal for your Into the Deep Numenera games! It is also highly recommended by the subject of Darcy’s poddity….
  • Darcy: Rich Howard is my go-to¬†expert in the RPG world on aquatic gaming, and frankly my go-to marine biology expert more generally!
    • Rich & Darcy chat¬†about Aquatic Gaming on James Intracoso’s Tabletop Babble. Into the Deep gets rave reviews!
      • Related to this chat, Rich ran an AMAZING D&D 5e Aquatic Adventure for Tabletop Babble’s Youtube Channel. See his advice in action!
    • Rich writes a column for Tribality called From the Depths, which gives GM advice, mechanical builds of aquatic races and creatures for D&D, and much more! He has also written loads of award-winning material available on¬†DriveThruRPG.
      • If you want to support these endeavors and get cool pdfs and writing, support his personal Patreon!
    • Rich also founded and co-hosts the amazing podcast Whelmed: The Young Justice Files about Young Justice, the DC Comics animated series about the “sidekicks” of superheroes, such as Batman’s Robin and Martian Manhunter’s Miss Martian. This show has broken my heart over and over again, and makes Aqualad one of the COOLEST CHARACTERS EVER and painfully Numenera. Watch it, and listen to Rich on Whelmed because he translates¬†the byzantine world of DC comics and continuity and delivers impassioned, fascinating storytelling to flesh out the already great shot. They’ve also got amazing guests by voice actors and other creators related to the show! I can’t recommend it enough.
      • If you love Whelmed (and you will!), support its production on Patreon!
      • Keep an eye out for an Actual Play here with maybe me in it! As maybe one of my favorite characters!

Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show!

Thanks for all the support so far!

Apr 17 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 8: High-Powered Games

CS-blank-250x250-webTurn it up to 11. Darcy & Troy discuss high-powered play, both through leveling up to higher tiers and through power shifts, which enable play with superheroes and gods.

Shout-outs:

  • Inspiration for supers games:¬†Whelmed: The Young Justice Files – A brilliant, moving, funny, accessible podcast that elaborates on the fantastic animated TV show Young Justice, which is streaming on Netflix and recently had a 3rd season announced! Hosts Caleb (of The RPG Academy) & Rich (of Tribality) are fabulous humans who bring to life the DC Universe and the excellent storytelling of YJ, even for people who had never touched that universe of media (like Darcy). They also have the support of many of the YJ creators, artists, voice actors and so on, and have really high profile guests with excellent conversations (except for Darcy’s). Support their Patreon if you like it!
  • #HackWeekGang: Troy & Darcy play at hacking, but these podcasts are where to go for real discussions of hacking games! Some of the best hosts in the land, as well!

Poddities

  • Troy:¬†Brandon Sanderson’s superhero book series, The Reckoners¬†(and many other excellent books!). The Reckoners is about superpowered people who experience a darkness the more they use their powers, turning them further into villains. The Reckoners are non-powered people trying to take down these supervillains. Great inspiration for playing with the “high power at a cost” trope!
  • Darcy:¬†ConTessa¬†is an organization that promotes and supports leaders in gaming who identify with historically marginalized or edged-out groups (such as women, LGBTQA+, people of color, people with disabilities, and more). Our events are run by people who identify as “other” in some way, but we welcome EVERYONE to participate in our events and play in our games!

Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show!

Thanks for all the support so far!

Apr 03 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 7: Gods of the Fall – Shifting Into Divine Gear

CS-blank-250x250-webThe Gods Are Dead – Now It’s Your Turn.¬†Darcy & Troy explore the Cypher System setting Gods of the Fall,¬†the first of the worlds¬†funded by the Worlds of the Cypher System Kickstarter. There is a lot to love about the Afterworld, the post-apocalyptic setting of Gods of the Fall, which is still reeling after heaven literally fell out of the sky and all the gods died. Players play characters discovering their divine sparks and potential to become fully fledged gods.

Gods of the Fall has some amazing mechanics and setting goodness that you won’t want to miss, check it out!

Safety in Gaming Resources: The X Card by the amazing John Stavropoulos & Panda’s Talking Games on its use, and Misdirect Mark’s episodes on safety and having a safety fail at the table even when you think you’re prepared.

Poddities


Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show!

Thanks for all the support so far! You’re all divine in our eyes <3

Oct 18 2016

Cypher Speak Episode 4: Sherlock Holmes & the Case of the Missing Recursion Entry

CS-blank-250x250-web221B Baker Street Рa mini-reality filled with danger and possibilities for your adventurers. Troy & Darcy discuss some of their favorite Strange recursions, and then explore how PCs might interact with this recursion, including cyphers and the twin icons Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty.

Worlds Numberless and Strange¬†– Dozens of new recursions for the Strange, expanded information on Ardeyn and Ruk, cyphers, artifacts, adventure hooks, creatures, and foci, oh my! It’s one of Troy and my favorite resources.

The Paradox Room – Two short stories from the Strange, one featuring a creature that escaped a fantasy recursion and found the bounds of Earth physics to be unpalatable.

Strange Revelations – A book of 10 extremely varied Instant Adventures for the Strange, complete with fabulous “Show ‘Em” pieces of art, one of which is a game board that you play on during the adventure! These adventures¬†can often be played in the Strange universe, where the recursions are fictional, or you could play straight-up Cypher System within the fiction of that recursion. I can’t recommend it enough.

Poddities

  • Troy: Living 4 Crits play report of Strange Suns – a Dark Sun/Sherlock Holmes Strange mashup campaign
  • Darcy: Numenera Character Options 2 – new Types, Descriptors, Foci, and even expanded information on some of the factions in the Ninth World! Lush art, inspiring, and as always cross-compatible with any other Cypher System game you could want. There are WATER BENDERS in here, this is NOT a drill.

Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show!

Thanks for all the support so far!

Oct 05 2016

Cypher Speak Episode 3: Cyphers & Settings

CS-blank-250x250-webCyphers: they might save your life, they might blow you up. Cyphers are frequently forgotten by players and GMs new to the Cypher System Рsome people find them superfluous. Troy & Darcy delve into what cyphers fundamentally are, share stories of how cyphers have changed their gameplay, and go into detail about what form and behavior cyphers may take across the vast number of settings you might use the Cypher System for.

This is a long episode – strap in and carefully holster your cyphers so that their mysterious energies don’t interact and bring about a singularity!

Detailed Shownotes: Coming to a theater near you! (Will be up within a day or two, thanks for the patience!)


Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show!

Extreme Cyphers

Incantations – The Invisible Sun podcast

She’s a Super Geek

Thanks for all the support so far!

Sep 13 2016

Cypher Speak Episode 2: Numenera 101 – We’re Not In Kansas Anymore

CS-blank-250x250-webThe Ninth World is a silly place, really, but Troy and Darcy love it. Learn the basic pitch of Numenera, some tips for playing in this weird science-fantasy sandbox, and about the secret meaning behind the symbol emblazoned on Darcy’s forearm and the spine of every Numenera core book.

0:45¬†Artifact:¬†Numenera’s Setting 101

  • 4:17 Language is key to maintaining the weird atmosphere of the Ninth World. Some examples:
    • Drit,¬†Synth,¬†Automaton,¬†Slug thrower,¬†Ray emitter,¬†Chirurgeon
  • 7:29 Gene Wolfe & the Book of the New Sun book series as inspiration for Numenera and the use of archaic language
  • 7:56 Numenera‚Äôs origins and Kickstarter
numenerastarterset

The Numenera Starter Set

  • 9:18 New product – the Numenera Starter Set! Coming this fall for $25
    • “Everything a new group needs to explore the Ninth World for the first time: pregenerated characters, basic dice, a poster map, introductory rules, two adventures, cards, and a cheat sheet”

9:53 Cyphers

  • 10:06 Why Troy Keeps Coming Back to Numenera
    • Exploration, from both a player and GM side
    • Can toss D&D Dungeons and other material in, just make it weird
    • Anything can belong in Numenera, don‚Äôt have to have a reason – those 8 Great Civs and more could have left it behind
      • Darcy: Players can come up with reasons, sometimes you can roll with it or subvert their expectations
    • Can pull from so many sources, for example Troy has used the¬†book series Wool by Hugh Howey and the Stormlight Archive by¬†Brandon Sanderson (Book 1: The Way of Kings, highly recommended!)
    • Tip: Avoid overuse of the word ‚Äúanalogue‚ÄĚ
    • Octopi – the only other known race to survive on the Ninth World from our Earth
  • 16:27 Numenera’s Weirdness
    • Darcy:¬†The weirdness can encompass any crazy idea the GM or the players have
    • Troy:¬†Can be run as ‚Äúnormal‚ÄĚ or weird as you want it to be
  • 20:29¬†Why Darcy¬†Keeps Coming Back to Numenera
    • Explore what life could have been like if different evolutionary paths were taken
      • Cambrian Explosion
Opabinia

Opabinia from DK Images

hallucigeniaandreyatuchin

Hallucigenia by Andrey Atuchin

 

  • Surprise players, subvert their Earthly expectations
  • Supports different stories tonally
  • Inspires¬†great visuals, both art in the book and mental landscapes

26:24 Darcy’s Numenera tattoo tangent

28:32 Poddities

  • 28:38 Troy: Shoutout to the podcast Backstory and host Alex Roberts, who got Troy to try out his first larp (with her!) at Gen Con
  • 29:46 Darcy
    • I was going to talk about Invisible Sun, but go listen to the Monte Cook Interview instead!
    • Come to AcadeCon! The podcast network RPG Academy puts on a great yearly con with a focus on tabletop RPGs (but with some boardgames as well). This year it‚Äôs November 11-13th at the Dayton Convention Center in Dayton Ohio, with tons of big name guests and events. Check it out, come play in my games. There will be a good contingent of us Cypher System nerds there. Tickets are still being sold!
  • 30:59 Bonus: #CypherSomeone – tweet at us with this hashtag and we‚Äôll give you a Cypher System character sentence!

 


Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show!

Thanks for all the support so far!

Sep 05 2016

Cypher Speak Asset Interviews 1: Monte Cook on Invisible Sun

CS-blank-250x250-webTroy & Darcy interview Monte J Cook about¬†his new game of surrealistic fantasy,¬†Invisible Sun, which is currently sitting at double its¬†funding goal with over $400,000 on Kickstarter¬†with only¬†11 days left!¬†If you’re a Cypher System fan and want to know why you’d be interested in Invisible Sun, this is the interview for you.

1:03 Invisible Sun Pitch

2;35 What do Cypher System fans have to look forward to in this game?

Invisible Sun Character Sentence Posts

  • You are¬†a [Foundation]¬†[Heart] of the order of [Order] who [Forte]
    • Your Foundation is something about your past or background, your Heart is your truest self, your Order is how you interact with magic and other magic-users, and your Forte is something that distinguishes you uniquely.

4:09 What level of narrative control do the players have in Invisible Sun?

8:50 There are pools in Invisible Sun, similar to the Cypher System. Do these pools act as both your resource, and your damage tracking?

10:10 Is there anything in Invisible Sun similar to the GM Intrusion Mechanic?

12:40 Because of the similar sensibilities to the Cypher System, was there a time when you thought Invisible Sun could be a Cypher System game?

15:10 What have you learned from previous projects, specifically the Numenera Reliquary Box, that you were able to apply to this project?

18:17 Are there elements of the Invisible Sun game that Cypher System players can take back to the Cypher System games that they play?

20:20 Are there things like Cypher System Card Decks in Invisible Sun to help the GM with managing the game, or with narrative ideas?

Invisible Sun Orders

Vances

Makers

Weavers

Goetics

Apostates

24:55 What was the inspiration behind the creation of the directed campaign?

26:40 During the directed campaign, people will be communicating back to Monte Cook Games about what is happening in their home campaigns. What will this experience be like of getting all this feedback of how people are playing the game?

28:00 There are great communities forming around Invisible Sun. What are you excited to see come out of the community?


Find out more from our guest:

 

Keep in touch & let us know your thoughts on the show!

Thanks for all the support so far!

Aug 29 2016

Cypher Speak Episode 1: Pardon Our Intrusion

CS-credits-250x250-webDarcy & Troy explore the GM Intrusion, a core Cypher System storytelling mechanic, from both the player and gamemaster perspectives.

0:34 Artifact: Gamemaster (GM) Intrusion

  • Definition: A GM Intrusion is a mechanic in the Cypher System, where the GM creates a complication for a character, offering 2 experience points (XP), one to keep, and one to give to another player. The player can accept the Intrusion and the XP, or pay 1 XP to reject it.
  • 1:12 Numenera Glimmer Taking the Narrative by the Tail, which has great advice on GM Intrusions and some specific examples for Numenera
  • 1:27 Example GM Intrusions

3:12 Cyphers

  • 3:22 Troy: GM Intrusions from the GM Perspective
    • GM Intrusions force you to complicate the story in interesting ways
    • They act as a mechanical excuse to break the rules for good storytelling reasons
    • They encourage the GM to be thinking of interesting complications and to respond to player actions in interesting ways
    • The ability for players to reject the intrusion can communicate to the GM what your players like or dislike
    • Darcy‚Äôs Two Shins: Being on the lookout for good GM Intrusions can ensure you don‚Äôt get into a storytelling rut – you‚Äôre always looking for the next turn in the story
  • 7:30 Darcy: GM Intrusions from the Player Perspective
    • For first time players, GM Intrusions can come across as scary – Darcy often makes her first one silly or fairly benign, with the goal to communicate that GM Intrusions will be interesting, not always bad
    • Players look forward to these before long
    • GM Intrusions make failure fun for players.¬†This can lead to more diverse roleplaying than you‚Äôd get if you were always trying to ‚Äúwin‚ÄĚ the game.¬†However, players sometimes go overboard and want to fail all the time
    • The distribution of XP on a GM Intrusion takes the sting/bummer out of the complication, keeps energy moving forward
    • The mechanic of giving 1 XP from a GM Intrusion to a fellow player reminds you to focus on the people around you, get out of your own character headspace.¬†Promotes cooperation
    • GM Intrusions can manipulate the energy at the table. They can speed up a languishing conversation and refocus the table. They can also be used to bring player attention to something they‚Äôre about to miss – ‚Äúthere‚Äôs something cool here!‚ÄĚ. Players still have the chance to ignore it, or pay the XP to say nothing bad happens
    • Troy‚Äôs Two Shins
      • Having something physical to signal a GM Intrusion to your players is really helpful to not break the flow of storytelling while still signaling to them.¬†Generally, these are XP cards or tokens to represent the 2 XP being offered – Monte Cook Games has very nice decks for the Cypher System, Numenera, and the Strange.
      • Look to your players for ideas on GM Intrusions, especially when they roll a 1. They‚Äôll be creative and invested in the idea.

14:01 Poddities

  • 14:08 Troy: ‚ÄúHacking the Cypher System – Reactive Cyphers‚ÄĚ from Inspiration Strikes by Marc Plourde
  • 15:18 Darcy: ‚ÄúRaces in a Cypher System Game‚ÄĚ from CypherCaster Issue 04 by Jeremy Land

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