Tag Archive: Troy

Mar 20 2017

Cypher Speak: Rules Primer

We wanted to give a quick Rules Primer of the Cypher System.  For experienced players there will not be much new here, but if you are a new player, and want to understand the jargon in some of our episodes this primer’s for you.

 


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

Thanks for all the support so far!

Mar 20 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 5: Comparative Cypher Studies

This week we compare the Cypher System to several other game systems.  If you are unfamiliar with the Cypher System, this will help you draw comparisons to games you may know.  If you are familiar with the Cypher System, this may give you a few ideas for new games to try.

 

Games We Compare To:

Savage Worlds

Fate

Star Wars – Edge of the Empire

Powered By the Apocalypse

Fiasco

The End of the World

Dungeons & Dragons

Nights Black Agents (Gumshoe)

 

Poddities:

Cypher Caster #6

????

 

 


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

Thanks for all the support so far!

Mar 06 2017

Cypher Speak Episode 5: The Great Estate

Hello Dear Listeners, we’re back!

The Estate is one of the major earth organizations in The Strange. Darcy & Troy discuss the possibilities of what this organization can do for you players, and some of the nefarious ways it can cause headaches for them.

 

Links:

The CypherCast Podcast

The Strange Box Kickstarter

Torment: Tides of Numenera

 


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

Thanks for all the support so far!

 

Jan 01 2017

Cypher Speak Update: Our Cypherlution

Hello friends and listeners!

We’ve been quiet for quite some time, and we’ve been working on a plan for getting the show back on track. Here we share some of the struggles we’ve had in the last few months, and talk about what we need to do to get the show back to you.

 

Links:

Madison Ray – @maddiekayray on twitter or email mrayaudio@gmail.com

Chris Sniezak – @MisdirectedMark

Two Weeks: A Microgame Collection – By Dan Enders

Sad Things On Index Cards – By Taylor LeBresh

 

Dec 29 2016

Gnomecast #5 – Gnome Resolutions for 2017

Welcome to the Gnomecast where we talk with gnomes about gnome things and avoid becoming part of the stew. This might be mandatory to avoid being volunteered as ingredients for the stew. Today we’re going to do gnome gamer resolutions for 2017. Let us know what your gamer resolutions are.

Oct 18 2016

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

CS-blank-250x250-web221B Baker Street – a 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 – some 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’s 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’t 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 “analogue”
    • 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 “normal” 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’s 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’ll 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’s Two Shins: Being on the lookout for good GM Intrusions can ensure you don’t get into a storytelling rut – you’re 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’d get if you were always trying to “win” 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’re about to miss – “there’s something cool here!”. Players still have the chance to ignore it, or pay the XP to say nothing bad happens
    • Troy’s 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’ll be creative and invested in the idea.

14:01 Poddities

Cypher Speak Itunes Page

Aug 13 2016

Cypher Speak Episode 0: Weird Beginnings

CS-credits-250x250-webWelcome to episode zero of Cypher Speak. Darcy and Troy begin their quest to delve into all things related to Monte Cook Games: creators of the Cypher System, Numenera, the Strange, No Thank You Evil, and the upcoming Invisible Sun RPG. Every show will have an Artifact, which will be our major topic or question for that episode. Darcy and Troy will then throw Cyphers at that particular Artifact. These will be different perspectives or points of view that will be useful for unpacking or exploring the episode’s Artifact. Lastly will be the Poddities; these will be little shoutouts about something cool that Darcy and Troy have seen recently and want to share.

In this introduction episode, Darcy and Troy talk about the format of the podcast, and why they love the Cypher System so much.

Time Stamps

0:30 Artifacts: Introduction to Cypher Speak, Why We Love the Cypher System

2:03 Cyphers: Darcy & Troy’s favorite aspects of the Cypher System

11:22 Poddities