Author Topic: Red Markets Inspiration  (Read 190888 times)

Shallazar

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #75 on: September 11, 2015, 11:40:37 AM »
For the first contract of the Campaign beta the takers are going to be looting around an abandoned neighborhood in the mountains where only stray casualties bumble about as synapses trigger hauntings of places they may have occupied in life. As a bonus to fulfilling the contract (simple closure) there is ample loot to be scored in the various houses, so long as the takers can avoid a large ruckus and the attention/generation of a mob. I thought about just making the characters roll sneak and athletics, as well as scavenging but these seemed too tame. Instead they can spend 30 endurance (split between all participating takers) to buy in to a general scavenging effort.

To resolve the success/degree of success I'm going to be using the children's puzzle game chairs. The tension created by the simple game is more gripping (imo) than calling for rolls that not everyone can make or would lead to a narratively unsatisfying end.
http://www.amazon.com/Ideal-Chairs-Stacking-Puzzle-Game/dp/B00005JCNZ

Each chair stacked represents one bounty (max of 24 chairs), the takers can quit at anytime and take however much they have accumulated. However, when the chairs topple it represents a taker making a loud noise and the Market rolls for Mob generation as if an unsilenced weapon was used.

The buy in makes it a gamble, if they succeed they'll still be down 30 endurance but up (potentially) 24 bounty. and if they fail they will be down 30 endurance plus resources spent dealing with the casualties. It also turns what would otherwise be (imo) boring roll off to an intense and thrilling scene where all the players can contribute.
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trinite

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #76 on: September 12, 2015, 02:46:14 PM »
Cool idea, Shallazar.
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Twisting H

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #77 on: September 14, 2015, 08:31:19 PM »
Really good and inspiring ideas in this thread gents.



I really like this setup.

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #78 on: September 14, 2015, 09:20:25 PM »
I tried using that setup with my IRL playtest to mixed results.  Some of the players liked having a physical tracker of their stuff and others were kinda "egh, I have to set up 40 counters?  can I just take tallies?"

I think the best moment of the physical tracker was when players decided to swap weapons for an encounter and decided to trade piles of tokens as well

Twisting H

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #79 on: September 14, 2015, 10:29:34 PM »
I tried using that setup with my IRL playtest to mixed results.  Some of the players liked having a physical tracker of their stuff and others were kinda "egh, I have to set up 40 counters?  can I just take tallies?"

I think the best moment of the physical tracker was when players decided to swap weapons for an encounter and decided to trade piles of tokens as well

You've identified a real world valid flaw. So what's a solution for this? Use dice as counters? Index cards with numbers?

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #80 on: September 14, 2015, 10:31:23 PM »
I tried using that setup with my IRL playtest to mixed results.  Some of the players liked having a physical tracker of their stuff and others were kinda "egh, I have to set up 40 counters?  can I just take tallies?"

I think the best moment of the physical tracker was when players decided to swap weapons for an encounter and decided to trade piles of tokens as well

I had all the coins sorted into individual baggies that I passed out to the players before the game began. It increases the GM workload but my group seemed pretty happy with it so it was worth it.

Twisting H

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #81 on: September 14, 2015, 11:28:32 PM »
So I was idly thinking about Lost Carol's post below and the neat map of mostly aquatic/island(ish) terrain in a Red Market's setting. 

1.Enclave Name
Village of Four Seasons



I like this map in general because you automatically have an area balkanized by geography and specialization of goods on specific islands can lead to shifting community politics of interdependence and hostility.  Also river piracy and commerce raiding are real threats/may be significantly profitable.  In an environment like this transportation is king, and those who control it would rule.  I could see enclaves rising and falling depending on the integrity of their boat hulls or if low tides created land bridges.   Alternative might be drones, carrier pigeons (why not), or hell maybe someone set up a zipline network among close islands.

I am of course assuming that swimming in the water is inherently dangerous. I was reminded of Dragon Age Inquisition and the Fallow Mire.

http://dragonage.wikia.com/wiki/Fallow_Mire

One of the things I think the game did really well was making the water area into a "the floor is lava" situation. Every time the player walks into the water, four plus zombies pop up out of the water and home in on your position. It made the area memorable and I think images of legions of the dead standing on the river floor, raising their hands so the fingertips just breech the surface as they sway with the current and you have to cross that in a boat oh so very gently would make a great scene in Red Markets.

Lets ignore the dead for the moment. In a map like the above survival in a post-apocalyptic world would be impacted strongly by natural phenomena and predators already.  Alligators? Non native invasive frog species that fucks up the ecology? Malaria brought about by a concentration of unchecked mosquitoes? Piranha's swarms went native and somehow became zombified?

Ok, the last is fanciful, but heavy rains, flooding banks, winds, lightning strikes in thunderstorms would all make living in an environment like that bad enough in a post-apocalyptic situation without the zombies.

So that made me reflect on Red Markets, and it really is economic horror. The system works perfectly well for a pure gritty survival game without the dead.

Then I was thinking about the Laird Barron story about the Iditarod, Arctic expeditions in gaming (http://recklessdice.com/2015/04/live-session-beyond-the-mountains-of-madness-part-1/) and The Revenant.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QRfj1VCg16Y

As written in the beta, Red Markets expects a cycle of risking life and limb with varying (usually diminishing) rewards. But I think the system as written could apply and apply well to one shot survival situations where instead of the crushing attrition of economic horror, there is a "happy" ending if the player survives to the end.  The Red Market's rules seem to me to deliver a more gritty slant on survival than any other system in gaming I can think of (GURPS, etc.). 

In a survival situation like this where you have multiple players or a lone survivor. Tapping a Dependent to heal humanity could mean a flashback in the middle of a crisis to a more domestic time, or you making the Dependent Needy, Strained, or Broken means you weakened the bond for additional supplies in the field (you ignored your wife's calls to work overtime to buy more supplies/train harder, etc.).

Then I was thinking of The Call of the Wild and Call of Catthulhu. And I got the weird idea, could the Red Market's rules as written work for playing a sled dog in the Iditarod? Your bonds/Dependents are with other dogs and the human drivers? I don't know just an amusing fancy I had.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2015, 11:36:58 PM by Twisting H »

crash2455

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #82 on: September 18, 2015, 01:28:57 AM »
Ran another playtest with player-made characters this time (except one player played Alpha pretty much exclusively because he had a dog).  Anyone interested can look at the character sheets here.

First playtest I ran where takers succeeded in 2 networking checks.  Alpha found a job to retrieve rubber for a slingshot maker, and Triage a job to deliver food from one enclave to another.  After about 40 minutes of back and forth where they tried to figure out how to do both jobs, they decided to take their chances at the food delivery job.  Some research revealed that the enclave, Jackson Street, was a former gang stronghold that utilized its abilities to keep out police and swat teams in the crash to stop casualties and vectors from invading.  It's an anarchocapitalist society occupied mostly by the members of the Jackson Street gang, but the de facto leader (not elected, everyone just kinda looks to him for leadership) opened the enclave to anyone willing to work their share and help keep invaders at bay.

On their way to the enclave they saw a black chopper heading their way, trailing smoke and crashing in a wooded area a bit away.  Recognizing this as a DHQS chopper (passed Meme test), the takers decided to investigate in order to reap some good loots.  They found the chopper surrounded by a dozen casualties already with more on the way.  Alpha was able to use the siren to successfully chum the Cs away long enough for them to scavenge the crashed chopper for whatever they could find quickly.  Valley picked up a mostly-empty SMG and Scrapper got a broken surveillance drone before they decided to cut and run.

As they approached Jackson Street, they found a large apartment complex with the first floor more or less gutted and filled with cavalry traps baited with raw meat, designed to attract and disable incoming casualties so that the goons can clean them out on a daily basis.  One of the fence guards sees the takers coming and lets down a ladder to let them in.  Alpha meets with Train Jumper (or TJ) and they get down to negotiations.  Through some atypical scamming (Triage did some work in the hospital to talk to some people who had info, Valley worked in the kitchen to talk to people, Scrapper went through TJ's trash), they uncovered all of the job spots; the most troubling of which was the Tough Spot, where they discovered that Jackson Street has lost contact with Bread Basket, and the true nature of this job is revealed to be scouting and re-opening / re-negotiating trade routes (and maybe teaching Bread Basket not to fuck with Jackson Street).  TJ Played 2 Spots at once with a Weak Spot and a Gift Spot, but Alpha managed to negotiate to 100% markup.  The completion price for the job came to 97 bounty at base.  Negotiations complete, the takers headed off to the site.

Leg 1:  Inner-city.  The takers hear the sound of clicking against the pavement, and Valley calls for them to hold back, looking out and spotting a small herd of Pronghorned Antelope.  A breeding group escaped from the local zoo years ago and given that the only thing that can outrun and catch them is a cheetah, they have expanded and flourished in this new landscape.  Valley (a chef at heart) can't turn down the offer of a few hundred pounds of meat for the cost of a bullet, and quickly puts one of the bulls down.  As the party approaches, one of the antelope jumps over a car and sets off its alarm, drawing out casualites from the nearby buildings.  Valley isn't going to let this go to waste and proceeds to skin and start butchering the antelope in the street as her partners shoot down a wave of oncoming caualties.  She gets 2 meatbags (made from antelope pelt tied off) and then runs off, letting the remainder of the carcass draw the remaining casualties to cover their escape.

Leg 2: Inner city.  Takers pass a hospital.  They recognize quickly that a hospital is a major source of potential bounty by way of patient records, but also that hospitals quickly became vector incubators during the Crash and are subsequently full of casualties and pretty much devoid of any light sources due to a major lack of windows and no remaining power to the building.  They decide they're already making a big enough profit on the job, mark the location on a map and continue onwards.

Leg 3: Inner City. Derailed train blocks the road.  As the takers look for a way around, they notice a mob of casualties surrounding one of the overturned boxcars and Alpha overhears some banging from inside.  Alpha, much to Valley's regret, hands Intern one of the meatbags to chum the Cs away and keep them distracted for a bit.  The takers find that there's a guy inside the boxcar and that also the hatch he entered through was constructed oddly and cannot be opened.  Triage, ever the humanist, decides to take the hatch apart to get the man out.  Valley hops on top of the boxcar to get a lay of the land and spots a delivery van approaching from the distance.  When she relays this info to the group, Alpha realizes this is a mantrap and the van is driven by slavers.  Valley takes no chances and blows the driver away with her sniper rifle, causing it to crash into a nearby building and drawing out some more Cs.  A small gunfight later, the takers have felled the slavers and distracted the casualties with a Duck Bomb out of alpha's bag (burned one haul to have a small useful item that makes sense), Triage backs the van out and down the way (burned 1 will to stunt drive the van out of casualty zone with a blind luck roll since no one took driving).  The party noticed that the train had a long line of fuel cars and that the slavers had attached a line to one of them to refuel their slave van on runs.  They also took along the man, exhausted from a day in a hot box with not enough water.

With the van they finally approached Breadbox (based on Garfield Conservatory Park), immediately noticing that there were no guards posted in the towers along the fence.  A closer examination showed some casualties and Alpha heard a human and simultaneously inhuman scream from within.  The place had been hit by an outbreak and a few vectors were left in the wake of it.  The party taps a resource to call up Rose, an enclave planner that can get maps to propsective enclave layouts, and start thinking about a way to address the situation.  They spot a big hole in a part of hte fence that piled through a garden and into the interior, and opens a path towards the storehouses (since they need to get food still), provided someone wants to sprint through a huge field full of casualties and potentially soem vectors.  Triage agrees to be the sprinter and gets Valley and Scrapper to cover him as he makes a break for it.  3 rounds to get to an unbreached building.  Triage manages to juke around casualties at full speed, but then suddenly the concentration is interrupted by "HELPHELPMEHELPMEHEEEEELPEMEEEEHURTSHURTSHURTSAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH" as a vector runs through a hole in the wall towards Triage.  Valley and Scrapper make good on their promises and Valley drops it with a good headshot (14/1 roll on a called shot), allowing Triage to get to the door. 

The room entered appears to be no better as casualties dot the entire area and the others have been called in by the vector screams and are pressing at the doors.  Triage continues the sprint unabated and now without any cover while the rest of the party decides to casually walk towards the motorized gate to the east.  Running through the area, Triage hears another telltale scream and picks up the pace through the door to the storage area, hearing the metal and glass ripping apart as the vector continues pursuit.  Silenced pistol already out, Triage goes for broke and manages to score a headshot on the approaching vector before running off towards the gate.  Triage hits the button to open the gates up and is greeted by the terrible grinding sound of the gate slowly opening.  Knowing that stealth is already fucked, Triage whips out his assault rifle and starts unloading into vectors trickling out of the cornfields and the rest of the greenhouse.  As the vectors start to outnumber the amount of fire he can put out, triage does some hardcore parkour to jump and roll from the catwalks on the fence and out the gate (5 endurance spend) as valley and scrapper get to the open gate to pick off more approaching vectors while he reloads.  They clean out the vectors with automatic fire and now just have to deal with a few dozen casualties moseying on forward. Alpha manages to distract the majority of them with the dog siren while they break open the storehouses and throw food into the delivery van. 

As scrapper comes out with the last crates of food on a Gator just outside the storehouse, the crew is alerted by one final scream coming out of the greenhouse heading straight for Scrapper.  Just as it reaches the vehicle it is again cut down by a swath of automatic fire and scrapper nervously drives up to the delivery van where they dump the rest of the food and drive off.

Between the job and some scavenged gear (sold off at upkeep price), the group made out with 119 bounty.  Alpha decided to take the short share and they then sorted out the stuff offscreen.

Long combats between casualties, vectors, or any combination of the two is interesting as the fight either ends with everyone walking away unharmed or the entire party destroyed.  I also realized the vectors were too easy because I forgot to apply their murder modifiers to the rolls.  That said, the players were rolling crits left and right (except for scrappers player who rolled an inordinate number of critical failures).  For the sake of fairness everyone was using Random.org to generate perfectly random numbers between 1 and 10 for every roll just to get the question of unbalanced dice out of the equation.  I don't know how or why but this game likes to break probability.

Jace911

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #83 on: September 18, 2015, 12:23:14 PM »
For what it's worth my group was just rolling our usual D10s (Though I did buy a new pair of red and black just for this game!) and I don't recall us running into any probability shenanigans. I think the only crit rolled at the table was the Neo-Nazi that tried to shoot Mal in the head.

crash2455

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #84 on: September 18, 2015, 12:29:55 PM »
For what it's worth my group was just rolling our usual D10s (Though I did buy a new pair of red and black just for this game!) and I don't recall us running into any probability shenanigans. I think the only crit rolled at the table was the Neo-Nazi that tried to shoot Mal in the head.

The first 2 playtests I ran had an insane number of Critical Failures (well, half of the second playtest used random.org and showed expected result distribution).  The first playtest had at least 15 critical failures and maybe 5 crit successes.  The third playtest had an equal number of critical successes and failures but pretty much only one player rolled crit failures.  One round he made a full attack and managed to roll crit failures on both rolls (spent a will to turn one crit fail into a regular fail) and then crit failed the next round to run somewhere.  I remember at some point his character got so tired of his shitty gun jamming that he just threw it in the back of the delivery van.

Tomsawyer

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #85 on: September 19, 2015, 11:46:56 PM »
We just had our first campaign game have a look at all that sweet sweet bounty.

At the end we each got 11-10 bounty of profit each   ;D

 

crash2455

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #86 on: September 19, 2015, 11:50:48 PM »
Were the M&Ms also counters

Tomsawyer

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #87 on: September 19, 2015, 11:52:42 PM »
Were the M&Ms also counters

No, but they were delicious  :)
« Last Edit: September 20, 2015, 12:30:42 AM by Tomsawyer »

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #88 on: September 20, 2015, 03:04:01 AM »


Alethea

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Re: Red Markets Inspiration
« Reply #89 on: September 20, 2015, 07:53:45 AM »


Is that fan art or real life? Either way, it's terrifyingly awesome.
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