The Ghost of the Bloody Night

Looks cool. How did it pan out during playtest?

I see that you went back to the 50-50 randomness for how evasive the Suspect’s answers are. I went from rolling a die to a controlled randomness (drawing stones, where 2 were bad) because I realized that if we constantly rolled 1-2, the game would never end. Was what your thoughts behind using a coin? Apart from it fits the theme, that is, paying the ferry man.

1 Like

Glad the game sparked some interest from you: I’m your fan since way back!

I simply didn’t playtest the game ! I have very little opportunities to play, so playtest looks like a luxury to me.

That doesn’t mean I didn’t think about the mechanic, though. The main advantage of the coin toss is cognitive accessibility.

I picture the facilitator·ix playing once in the comfort of their home, going through a trial session that is a bit bunky but ends ok, and then finding themself at a campfire with people in the mood to try something new. The game is easy to sell, so they can gather some courage to propose it. But they probably don’t have printed rules at that time, and must rely on their memory. If they have to introduce a semi-complex mechanic, they’re going to lose some players goodwill, and that’s a hit to the mood, trust, and maybe from there the ability to make the game work at all. I want them, and the players, to be able to focus on their roles, and for the facilitator·ix, on that task. It’s inspired by Lumpley’s “foldable design” : likewise, if there’s a child around that is scared by the story, the game is “neutered” into simple chit chat roleplay. And that consideration takes precedence over if they use a a coin or stones.

I don’t see a disadvantage to this choice, as the story will be brought to its end after a hard limit of 4 turns any. It will not always be well written, but always good fun. I expect lots of red herrings and a lot of ham.

On the limit of 4 : I could have made the game shorter with more people, but 5 people is easier to manage as a not-so-authoritative facilitator·ix. Then, with more experience, they’ll be able to run the game for a small group of teenagers, as they would play a game of Werewolf for instance. That’s not written, but they’ll know when they are confident enough to pull i. (following what I understood of your advice on scaffolding for beginners)

Also: 1 page.

TL;DR : I fear drawing B/W beads in a bag, although simple, still has a possibility of confusing some people, when a coin toss never will, and the game session has a hard limit of 4 turns.

What do you mean with “facilitator·ix”?

Yeah, I found it interested that you created a “x card mechanic” within the game. I mostly leaned towards sillyness (animorphs) in order to try to stay clear from any horrifying experiences. I also tried to create a playful layout to emphasize that even further.

What elements did you bring in from the game(?) Story of the Dog?

The facilitator·ix is the person who introduces the game to others. Masculine is facilitator, therefore feminine should be facilitatrix. I mix both forms, because I can’t say in advance whether it will be a woman or a man.

As you intuited, the Dog story is not a game, but a spooky ghost story… of an undead dog. It worked on me as a grown up, so I judge it good. It uses the brick joke trick to create a final jumpscare. But really, there’s nothing from it in the game.

This makes me realize I should change this reference for The White Lady story, which is the most popular (older than paper, and shared with Algeria, too) spooky legend in France. The modern equivalent would be The Hitchicker story.

“Neutering” the story is more a Buddy mechanic + Veil than a X-card, but yes.