Master Mines

We’re digging RPGs

Decommissioned Big Three

Big Three
1. What is your game about?
Decommissioned is a satirical look at the dehumanization of corporate life.  In the game, players take on the role of Battlebots, Atificially Intelligent combat units manufactured by multi-global corporate entities specifically to war with the Battlebots of other corporations.  The PC Battlebots have decided to escape their monotonous existence for a short span of freedom, knowing that once they leave The Compound, their Tech Masters will flip their Killswitch and their Core will begin Meltdown, the inexorable descent to destruction.  Each Battlebot will have a specific goal from character creation and the game is about its pursuit of that goal.  This goal is created by the player in corporation with the GM.

2. What do the characters do?
Decommissioned PCs are Battlebots that begin play escaping The Compound and spend their remaining existence pursuing their one goal before their Meltdown (destruction).  During this time, the Battlebots will face conflict with their former department members (other Battlebots) and other obstacles until the Battlebot either meets destruction while achieving their goal, or possibly being destroyed before accomplishing it.

3. What do the players do?
During the initial stage of the game, the player(s) and GM choose the length for the game (1, 2 or 3 hours) and players create their Battlebot’s goals.  Then, the GM begins play and the timer begins.  As time progresses, PCs suffer Core Failures, losing their main character statistic.  However, by trying new things and driving towards their stated goal, players can increase a second stat that can be used to help their Battlebot succeed at conflicts.


April 8, 2008 - Posted by | D-Com


  1. Is it guaranteed that all characters will complete Meltdown?

    If the secondary statistic helps player characters succeed at conflicts, what does the main character statistic do?

    Comment by robertbohl | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  2. The default setting is that all characters will complete Meltdown. I will be writing in a few outs, one of which I came up with while going to sleep last night. But the heart of the game is “D&D in reverse”. The PCs start totally badass then lose levels until they’re dead.

    I’ll post up how the stats work soon, it will explain it better. The short version is that the main stat: Core is used for anything a Battlebot is programmed to do. The secondary stat is a learning computer used for anything a Battlebot is not programmed to do, and it can be used as an additive to Core.

    Comment by orklord | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  3. Interesting. So, for example, they’re going to get worse at fighting (since they’re all made to fight, as Battlebots), but better at solving conflicts through other means. That’s exciting to me.

    By the way, you may know this but there was a TV show called Battlebots. I don’t know whether that’s a concern for you or not.

    Comment by robertbohl | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  4. There was a TV show called Battlebots? Dang. I loved the alliteration of it.

    And Doombots it taken, too.

    Alright, need something that sounds like a commodity (running to…

    EDIT: Maybe something very corporate-sounding. Like how a call center rep is called a customer service associate, or sanitation specialist for a janitor.

    Comment by orklord | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  5. Yeah I love baroquely-complicated “soft language” especially used in creepy situations like this. Unmanned Soldiers?

    Comment by robertbohl | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  6. unmanned soliders is pretty cool.

    I’m currently thinking about some kind of acronym that equates to Aggressive Engagement Tool or something that doesn’t describe them as human in any way, much more like a cog in the wheels.

    Comment by orklord | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  7. C.O.G.: Cognative-operant guerillas
    AgEnTs: AGgressive ENgagement Tools

    I still love Unmanned X. Soldiers. Ground Units. Marines. Whatever.

    Comment by robertbohl | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  8. I dig AgEnTs and Unmanned Units… UUs.

    Thanks for the ideas.

    Comment by orklord | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  9. This strikes me as a very structured game. Rich, have you talked to Fred about Escape or Die or had a chance to play it? It’s also a timed game, and its Doom mechanic sounds like Core Failures. (It also sounds a bit like The Mountain Witch, in reverse.)

    Can you give us a sense of what sort of goals a PC might have, and what sorts of obstacles (other than direct confrontation with other…units) they might face?

    Comment by Matthew Gandy | April 8, 2008 | Reply

  10. Matt,

    I haven’t talked to fred and Escape or Die, but Ryan told me about the game and I listened to the AP Recording Fred put on his Evil Hat podcast thingy. The two are similar in many ways. I have a future post explaining how D-Com’s timing works.

    I’ll post up some PC goals, too.

    Comment by orklord | April 8, 2008 | Reply

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