What are examples of graceful ways to phrase "play to find out"?

What are examples of graceful ways to phrase “play to find out”?

Are there any good games or materials you would recommend to help think through this?

Some context: My cousin and I are designing a “passover rpg” called Ma Nishtana, a story game Haggadah, rearranging and remixing the rituals of the Jewish seder that our family puts on every year.

During each scene we want to provide a narrative focus for the table to play towards.

A few examples of what we have:

“We play to find out: What harsh order is carried out on the characters in the scene?”

“An everyday object has been transformed into G-d’s vessel. We play to find out: What is it and how does it awe us?”

“We play to find out: Who convinces you to let go?”

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Hello, a very good idea and original, this Pesach game. I’d say you can totally cut “We play to find out” and keep the questions only. If you like the sound of it, an opening invitation “let’s find out …” is valid.
Some games from the Forge era would work with scene framing and a question to solve each scene. Apocalypse World attached questions to characters, with players stating their answers (moves) when certain conditions are met. I imagine PsyRun revelations or BoB “Play this when” could be used with heavy handed tweaks.
But these are tangential. Your game could more simply be a Descended from the Queen game (question cards), or a Fall of Magic offspring (same with a scroll/map/board).

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Given the uses you present, I suggest things along the lines of:

  • “We are here to discover…”
  • “What we want to know is…”
  • “We are exploring…”
  • “The question is…”
5 Likes

You probably don’t need the : either.

“We play to find out what harsh order is carried out on the characters.”

You might consider Microscope as an inspiration here, which just has scenes asking a question, so simply:

“What harsh order is carried out on the characters?”

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Hi Dereel,

Thank you so much for the response. It is really valuable. We had seen a really great For the Drama game called the Promised Land that tackled similar themes but it didn’t quite fit what we were trying to do. Thank you for the Bob and Psyrun recommendation. I haven’t read Psyrun so this gives me the opportunity and it’s time I read again thoroughly through Bob.

My follow up question is what forge games are you specifically thinking of?

Thank you again for the advice. Let me know!

Ben

Hi Oz,

Really great editing feedback. I think taking out the colon : will take out a great deal of stiffness just from that alone.

I actually have never read microscope so I guess it is time!

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PsyRun has the characters running from a threat and towards a revelation using Otherkind dice.
Belonging outside Belonging has players play the role of milieu, concepts or other entities in a dialogue with their characters. Again, a good tool for theme exploration.
Drama system - Hillfolks works with scene goals but I wasn’t thinking about any specific game.