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Idea for keyword-tagging Cthulhu scenarios to help Keepers


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#21 malcojones

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 09:00 PM

Actually, a classification based on potential-average-SAN-loss is probably a good metric to use. I suppose you could use potential-average-HP-loss as a danger/risk metric.
Kind Regards
Dave


This is a mathematical way of recording mythos levels, I suspect. If there's a chance of 1-100 SAN loss, my guess is you're in a Mythos Heavy scenario. If the worst that can happen is you see a dead body (walking) it's mythos light. It might be quickly done on SAN loss for the worst entity that can be encountered. And doesn't give anything specific away.

Best, macojones


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#22 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 31 October 2012 - 07:51 PM

Given people seem happy enough that Mythos Medium is a useful category, and it won't end up completely arbitrary, I'll go ahead and create it. Cheers. I fret, you know.

I did think about SAN loss myself (great minds think alike...), and it might be a handy rule of thumb. Of course, a low "biggest SAN loss" doesn't necessarily mean a low of the scenario - tome-heavy ones are the main thing that spring to mind - but they'd generally work okay as a check for the lowest reasonable category. Once you're rolling a d10 it's going to be difficult to justify as short on Mythos without some pretty good Fast Talk.

#23 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 31 October 2012 - 11:03 PM

The new category is here. As I said, I won't be doing too much categorisation on those lines myself simply because I don't own many of the scenarios.

For now I'll try to fill in the missing scenario entries, when I get time.

#24 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 06 November 2012 - 02:37 PM

It occurs to me that in terms of "Campaign Length", as well as the existing "prologue" and "one-shot" categories, I should probably have a category for scenarios that don't really allow for any follow-up games... but what to call it? It'd probably include one-off "you're doomed" scenarios, scenarios where investigators might "win" but won't survive, and scenarios that form climactic finales that you really wouldn't want to follow on from.

Suggestions for names would be great. I'd also appreciate any suggestions for other useful categories (relating to length or otherwise).

#25 ElijahWhateley

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Posted 06 November 2012 - 05:48 PM

"Conclusion" or "Party Termination Expected" scenarios?

#26 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 06 November 2012 - 11:23 PM

I like "conclusion". Or maybe "conclusive"..?

So at the moment I'm thinking about something like this:
One-shot scenarios (one-offs that don't call for any lead-in or follow-up, and establish any necessary circumstances or knowledge themselves)
Prologue scenarios (standalone scenarios that are intended as, or work well as, lead-ins to another scenario or campaign)
Conclusive scenarios (don't allow for any follow-up without major rewriting)

Campaign-starting scenarios (requires follow-on)
Mid-campaign scenarios (assume considerable and probably specific backstory, and requires follow-on)
Campaign-ending scenarios (assumes considerable and probably specific backstory)

? Interlude scenarios (one-shot diversions between other scenarios, no links necessary, e.g. the "during travel" scenarios in Fearful Passages)
? Coda scenarios (scenarios that follow up the events of a campaign or another scenario, but aren't necessary for closure)

I also wondered about distinguishing one-shots that expect to be part of a loose campaign from those expecting to be standalone, but I'm not sure either if that's useful or if this set of categories is the place to do it.

Possibly I should repurpose "one-shots" for standalones that don't allow further play, and pick another word like, hey, "standalones" for one-off scenarios that would allow it? I'm just trying to think what's useful without either too many categories, or putting every scenario in about three of them to define what it does...

Actually, a D&D-style square might work well here....

[TABLE="class: grid, width: 800"]
[TR]
[TD][/TD]
[TD]Requires follow-on
[/TD]
[TD]Allows follow-on
[/TD]
[TD]No follow-on
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]No lead-in[/TD]
[TD]Opening[/TD]
[TD]Prologue[/TD]
[TD]One-shot[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Allows lead-in[/TD]
[TD]Inconclusive[/TD]
[TD]Standalone[/TD]
[TD]Conclusive[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Requires lead-in[/TD]
[TD]Mid-campaign[/TD]
[TD]Sequel[/TD]
[TD]Finale[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]

Though even then you could arguably add "coda" and "interlude" as distinct subtypes.

Any comments? Would this be a remotely useful way to mark up scenarios?

#27 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 10:26 PM

On a different note, I'm wondering about creating somewhere (probably a thread here) a sort of "open call" for reviews for scenarios without them. Hoping to inspire people who actually own the scenario to write a review, partly for the wiki link, but also because if you don't have a review to look at then you really are flying blind a lot of the time when considering purchases, so it'd be a useful resource in general. So I'll probably create a "scenarios without reviews" category on the wiki as well to mark up that either a review is needed, or a link needs adding.

#28 malcojones

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 11:49 PM

I think this is getting a mite too complex.

One shot covers scenarios that don't necessarily lead on to other investigations (but might).
I think you should use 'Con' for the conclusive version of the one shot and for the typically self-contained convention scenario.
I think you also need a category for scenarios which are introductory, first time out type scenarios -but maybe this is covered by mythos level!
Scenarios which are part of campaigns, or can't be played by inexperienced investigators, could all be called 'campaign' scenarios.

That's 4 categories, max.

Hope this is helpful. Best, malcojones

Edited by malcojones, 08 November 2012 - 11:51 PM.
spelling


#29 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 11:46 AM

I think this is getting a mite too complex.

Possibly. Force of habit.

I think you also need a category for scenarios which are introductory, first time out type scenarios -but maybe this is covered by mythos level!

I think is already covered in Beginner Scenarios under Scenarios by Experience. That's not necessarily Mythos-scaled but it's scenarios that are designed for, or generally said to be particularly suitable for, new players. There's a contrasting Complex Scenarios one for scenarios that are said to call for experienced groups and to be unsuitable for new players.

One shot covers scenarios that don't necessarily lead on to other investigations (but might).
I think you should use 'Con' for the conclusive version of the one shot and for the typically self-contained convention scenario.
Scenarios which are part of campaigns, or can't be played by inexperienced investigators, could all be called 'campaign' scenarios.

That's 4 categories, max.

Hope this is helpful. Best, malcojones


So we'd be looking at One-shot, Campaign and... I do like Con, but I've got to say it wouldn't be intuitive for me if I was looking for self-contained games for home play. Convention-style?

#30 malcojones

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 09:55 AM

So we'd be looking at One-shot, Campaign and... I do like Con, but I've got to say it wouldn't be intuitive for me if I was looking for self-contained games for home play. Convention-style?


Some good ideas about beginners and experienced players.

'Self-contained' might be what you need since 'one-off' is too much like one shot. 'Convention-style' probably means too many things that could be subjective.

Best, malcojones

#31 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 10:59 AM

Okay, thanks. For the moment, then, I'm going with 'one-shot', 'self-contained' and 'campaign' (plus 'prologue' as a sort of side-category).

Incidentally, I'm starting to think some people use 'one-shot' for what we're calling 'self-contained' scenarios, based on reviews and such, so this might get sticky again :S

Would it be worth polling for this, do you think?

#32 OptikaNET

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 01:43 PM

Hi Shimmin - if you'll excuse the pun here, I'm starting to lose the plot!!!

Could you post a description of your overall scheme as it stands now?

Kind Regards
Dave

#33 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 03:28 PM

Hi Shimmin - if you'll excuse the pun here, I'm starting to lose the plot!!!

Sorry!

In terms of campaign lengths, the types that Malcojones and I thought were worth distinguishing are:
* Your bog-standard generic scenario which can be run on its own or slotted into a home-made campaign if you prefer (like "The Haunting", "Crack'd and Crook'd" etc.)
* Scenarios that expect to be run independently, and would need considerable work to incorporate into a campaign (e.g. those with amnesiac shapeshifted Serpent Men as investigators, or that inevitably lead to an apocalypse)
* Scenarios written as intrinsic parts of a formal campaign, which would need considerable work to run on their own or as part of your own campaign (such as individual chapters of "Masks" or "Shadows")

I've also been using a fourth category
* Scenarios that are designed as lead-ins to another, but can be played without the follow-up.

We've been talking about using "one-shot", "self-contained", "campaign" and "prologue" respectively to describe these. However, I’d started out using “one-shot” as a category for non-campaign scenarios in general, and I think general use of “one-shot” leans towards that (a mixture of the first two types). So I’m wondering what’s the least confusing terminology to use.

#34 OptikaNET

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 03:34 PM

Actually my question went further than this. This thread started out being ways to categorise lots of different elements of scenarios in a (hopefully) consistent way and I've somewhat lost my way in what has or hasn't been decided on this format...

Kind Regards
Dave

#35 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 06:44 PM

Actually my question went further than this. This thread started out being ways to categorise lots of different elements of scenarios in a (hopefully) consistent way and I've somewhat lost my way in what has or hasn't been decided on this format...


Ah. Okay, let's see...
There's some fairly simple categorisation of discrete stuff - does this appear in the scenario? These include:

Then there's stuff about the setting, which is again binary yes/no:
  • Where, geographically, is it set?
  • What sort of locations does it use?
  • What era is it set in?
  • What default setting does it assume (on the basis that DG, Weird West and so on have slightly different assumptions)?
  • What types of investigators are involved? Particularly important for campaign play where you can't suddenly retcon your party of Russian aristocrats to all be members of the US Senate.

Then there's some metagame stuff, which is a mixture of yes/no and quantitative.
  • What hooks does the scenario offer?
  • Does it assume the use of a pregen party?
  • How big a gaming group is it intended for? So far I've only highlighted particularly small and unusually large groups, partly because scenarios rarely state that they're for a 3-6 group.
  • What sort of CoC experience does the scenario assume? So far this only notes "beginner" and "complex" scenarios (again, scenarios don't usually state that they're suitable for a "moderately experienced" group).
  • What tone does the scenario take? Currently I'm assuming pulp and purist subcategories, and have had to add "comedy" to deal with Blood Brothers...
  • How much Mythos appears in the scenario, rated none-low-moderate-high?
  • How much combat appears in the scenario, rated none-low-moderate-high?
  • How lethal is the scenario, rated none-low-moderate-high-inevitable?
  • How does the scenario fit into campaign play? Currently under discussion (as last post).

In some cases (notably Combat, Lethality) not all of the subcategories currently exist because I haven't run into any appropriate scenarios yet, but I could easily make empty categories for them.

We also talked about adding Investigation and Interaction (or some equivalent) categories for the amount of clue-hunting and social stuff in the scenario. I haven't added them so far, but it's very much a "so far" case.

There was an idea of expanding the Pregens so it distinguished "scenarios where you are expected to use pregens" from "scenarios that include pregens purely for your convenience", which I am entirely in favour of.

To some extent I've pushed on with things on my own just because I'm keen to do things and the thread hasn't been super busy. But I'm very willing to chop and change things rather than impose my own arbitrary ideas. So please do tell me if you think I've done something daft or have some better ideas.

#36 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:27 PM

Updatewise, I've finished adding categories for all non-deity monsters from the Malleus Monstrorum. Next, deities, tomes and artefacts.

#37 PoC

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 03:41 PM

Great stuff!

#38 Shimmin Beg

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 03:34 PM

Phew! Deities, GOOs and all related entities now categorised.

Annoyingly there's a few typo'd categories now lying around making the place untidy, as I can't delete pages. Serves me right for doing mass additions, I suppose.