Master Mines

We’re digging RPGs

Ways to fritter away your youth and beauty

Hey folks, I’m writing to introduce myself to the group. I’m Rob Bohl and I live in NJ (for now) and work at a public university’s IT department as a staff manager. I’m actually about to move soon. Hurray.

Anyway, to get substantive, my game is called Misspent Youth. It’s about friendship, the fight for freedom, and being awesome. My Fred-Hicks-style Hollywood Pitch is: In Snow Crash’s future, Danny Ocean’s crew–Goonies-sized–play craps to take down Big Brother. You can see a somewhat out-of-date Power 19 for the game here.

In brief, though, it’s a sci-fi game about 12 to 17 year olds in a future about ten years from now. The players create a villain together, then create their Youthful Offenders to tap into that. All conflicts are group conflicts and it is not possible to mechanically act against members of your crew. You can fight with them, you can even have an in-group argument touch dice, but if you do the Authority player plays the part of the strife in your relationship.

I have lots of documents, about 8 drafts, a half-finished text, and a current outline more-or-less done. I’m not sure what else I should do at this point.

In terms of my activity level on the game, I’ve just finished my Masters degree, and while I am going to be job-hunting, I should soon have the spare mindspace to get to work in earnest on the game, start really working on some text, playtesting like a bitch, etc.

If you have any questions about the game, I’d be very happy to answer them.

Advertisements

December 4, 2007 - Posted by | Misspent Youth

4 Comments »

  1. Welcome to the fold.

    I guess my first questions are:

    It’s about friendship, the fight for freedom, and being awesome.

    Unpack that a bit. Tell us about how it’s about friendship, the fight for freedom, and being awesome. Especially that last part, since “awesome” is a word thrown around so often.

    You can fight with them, you can even have an in-group argument touch dice, but if you do the Authority player plays the part of the strife in your relationship.

    The way your phrase this almost sounds like you’re creating a disincentive system for this situation. Am I just reading into it, or do you see this element of your game as something undesirable for those who would trigger it?

    Comment by Ryan Macklin | December 4, 2007 | Reply

  2. Unpack that a bit. Tell us about how it’s about friendship, the fight for freedom, and being awesome.

    This is a stealthfully-asked Big Three, innit? Can do.

    The way your phrase this almost sounds like you’re creating a disincentive system for this situation.

    Right there is one of the ways it’s about friendship. Teasing each other is one thing. Having gut-punchy conflicts with your friends, however, only empowers The Authority. It’s about friendship because if you fight with one another, you’re aiding The Authority. So yes, it’s an intentional disincentive. I wanted an indie game that was about teamwork, friendship, and cooperation.

    You also gain narrative control by making the other members of your crew look cool. When you rely on them, when you say, “I need Jane here because she’s so good at this kind of thing,” etc., you get the Tag, which makes you the in-fiction leader until it’s traded back. It also gives you (EDIT) meta-fictional responsibilities such as scene framing in certain circumstances.

    It’s about rebellion because you design an oppressive villain that you’re trying to break and liberate yourself and your friends and family from, and you build your characters with reasons to hate that Authority in particular. It’s about rebellion because your characters are underdogs fighting the power. It’s about rebellion because your stats talk about the various ways you are a bad kid who can’t just be content with the status quo.

    It’s about friendship because all conflicts are group conflicts, because most scenes are assumed to have your teammates in them, because if you don’t fight together you empower The Authority, because when you praise your friends you get rewarded for it.

    It’s about being awesome because you are effective and empowered to do big, splashy, cool shit. It’s about being awesome because with every roll you’re describing how you are winning (unless you’ve lost).

    I should also mention it’s about growing up. “Damage” is when your traits flip from a youthful, free version to a grown-up, sold version. For example, you can go from being Fast to Efficient. You can go from having been Abused to becoming Abusive. You can have been Cool, and then become Trendy.

    Did I answer your question? How’s it feel sipping from a firehose? 🙂

    Comment by robertbohl | December 4, 2007 | Reply

  3. Hey robert,

    I remember hearing about this at dreamation last year, and it sounds really cool. Are there any specific problems you’re having in your design at this point?

    Comment by jhimmelman | December 9, 2007 | Reply

  4. That’s an excellent question and one we should always be asking. I’m sure there are specific questions I need to have answered. At this point, however, I’m finishing up the last three papers I need to do to complete my Masters degree. (Note, this is not a rebuke, just an explanation of why I’m not doing things I’d rather be doing, like working on my game.)

    As my Goals post indicates I plan on reworking the rules by the end of the month, and I’m sure lots of questions will come up as I do so. I will shortly be doing a post about a rules-idea I had and I will endeavor whenever I post to be very explicit about what design questions I have, if any.

    Comment by robertbohl | December 9, 2007 | Reply


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: