Who else is designing a Descended From The Queen game?

Like many others around here, I’ve been excited about the release of For The Queen for a while now. I’ve also been working on a hack of it. Today, the designer (Alex Roberts) and publisher launched an SRD for the game and encouraged people working on hacks (which they’re calling games Descended From The Queen) to make themselves known.

Twitter’s great for that kind of announcement, but I wanted to find a space to talk more in depth. Who else is working on DFTQ games? I’m curious what people have learned about hacking FTQ: what is the core system best at? What experiments have you tried and failed? What parts of the original game are load-bearing? What’s your game, and why are you excited about it?

I’m working on a hack about an adventuring party with a cursed member, and the questions are all geared towards treating this situation as a metaphor for chronic disease. The game still centers around a central figure like the Queen (in this case a Cursed person), but in my current draft, one of the players is designated as that figure. I like the way FTQ’s Queen being an NPC naturally gives a distance to her, but I also like what bringing a centralized figure down to the player level does in my game.

I’ve also played around with having two decks of question cards (one for the Cursed, one for people who aren’t), or question cards that have two questions depending on which role you have, though I haven’t loved either of those mechanics.

What are you making, what have you tried out that’s different from For The Queen, and how is it going for you? I’m pumped to play lots of DFTQ games in the future.

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I’m super excited about DftQ becoming a genre of games. I’m messing around with an idea for a game about adopting a cat from an animal shelter, but I’m only in the very earliest stages. I also have an idea for a DftQ/PbtA hybrid game where each card has a move on it.

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Combining DFTQ and PBTA is interesting. Do you have any more to the idea than the concept there? Even without the DFTQ framework, a PBTA game that randomly determines the sequence of moves used is interesting. I’m curious what it’d be good at doing.

The idea for a Sailor Moon-inspired (teenage girls who transform into magical warriors to fight a monters of the week) DftQ game wormed its way into my brain today.

Initial idea is to use prompts to establish the characters in a first phase, and then jump into a “magical crisis” (the monster of the week’s plans come into action) with a dedicated deck of prompts. Once this deck is over, they finish off the monster and players tie up loose ends for the “episode”.

I’d make a deck of villains, and each villain card would feature their plan (“sell magical jewelry that saps people’s life energy”, “turn all the pets in the town evil”) and foreshadowing scenes that would get played after a round of draws.

I’m also thinking of diving the “mundane phase” deck into four categories: romance, friendship, school and family, so all main aspects of a character’s life are explored in this phase.

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Here in France, we’ve got a community of FTQ-enthusiasts. And we’re creating games !

Someone (MatthieuB) created a website to play hacks : www.forthedrama.com
First there were only french games, but translations are coming !

I myself have made two games.
Final Lap, in which we play Racers in the last race of the season. The most coveted race of all. Relationships with others racers and the Champion, motivations, moves on the track are what the questions are about. It’s available on ForTheDrama right now.

The Case that will make the Headlines is also available on ForTheDrama, but also in PnP on itch.io : https://gulix.itch.io/the-case-that-will-make-the-headlines
In that game, we play journalists, reporters, photographs. All gravitating around the same Case, that could change our career.

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I’ve been working on an OSR kitbash and using FTQ style leading questions to try and initiate a more developed history between the characters in the party. It’s felt a lot more open ended! Ive been workshopping them here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1r9-CY6jAu_wKs3nG0SXpT6gfZvOK-BUVBNGDNrQIb-M/edit?usp=sharing

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I am currently working on a DftQ game about the support network of a super hero through a particular arduous struggle.

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I’m tinkering with one about space colonisation, but I’m not sure how well its going.

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I wanted to check this though people:

While the rules are SRD, the Instructions deck is actually not SRD? So text on those cards cannot be replicated in DftQ games?

That is correct. This is pretty standard. You can’t use the exact text of the game. (Apocalypse World is the same way.) Just rephrase things.

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Should not be a problem, since the rules are still SRD, just the way they are written in the Instruction Cards is different.

I wish I had bandwidth to create a game where there are people in a cryo-ship heading through space to a new planet, where they have awakened well before getting to their destination…

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Flying back from GenCon, I got the idea for a Descended from the Queen superhero game. It’s “For the City” (or, if this doesn’t tip its hand too much, “For this Ungrateful City”). You’re protectors of the city but also some kind of outcasts, like the X-Men (or Gargoyles, or…)

It was amusing to consider how many cards could come right over with a small substitution:

“What makes the City beautiful, in your eyes?”

“What brings out the City’s cruelty?”

“The City lights a fire in you. What is it?”

“The City is under attack. Do you defend her?”

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Well, now that I got a chance to play the game, I’m making a hack of it.

The basic idea is that you’re human astronauts that crashed on an alien planet, which is full of ruins of an ancient, long vanished civilization.

We’ll see how it works out, as the game develops.

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I feel like I come up with a new DftQ idea every week. One I’ve been thinking about for a while but I didn’t mention in this thread is about members of a union, with the final question being “A strike is called. Do you cross the picket line or not?”

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I like a DtfQ game about a union! Not sure about that final question though, since strikes are usually built on very specific issues and conflicts that are a long time coming, and I think it’d be hard to build that into a randomized deck of cards without spotlighting a very specific issue you’re potentially striking over. But maybe that works, where that specific issue kinda takes the place of the Queen, and most of the cards are asking you to think about and define that issue.

Or maybe make it about forming a union rather than already being a part of one, and end on “do you vote yes to unionize or not?”

Part of me also wants to reject the premise of the game, since I’m very pro union, and I don’t like the idea of making a game who’s parent (FTQ proper) is about trying to get you to ride the line / find it to be a close call how you answer that final question. But there’s a lot of room for dramatic storytelling and relationships in unions, and I’d love to see more RPGs about them.

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I’m a proud union member who participated in a strike a few years ago, so I’m not intending to make an anti-union game! But I think there are a lot of interesting complications brought up by the decision to go on strike, and I saw how some of my staunchly pro-union colleagues had to wrestle with the costs and drawbacks of the strike. Plus, I feel like DftQ is a format that makes it easy to explore the motivations and thinking of a character whose choices you don’t endorse, because of the way the cards are set up to have leading questions that throw background at you that you hadn’t planned on being part of your character.

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Totally! I was also part of a union that authorized a strike a couple years ago (though we didn’t end up having to pull the trigger on it), and we had a lot of those conversations. I just think you want to be extra careful about what your game is saying around stuff like that, so wanted to point it out.

I had absolutely no plans to make a game like this until an idea hit me a couple days ago, and it seemed like an obvious fit… so I guess I’m making a game about being queer and living in a tiny redneck town, and the ultimate decision is whether to stay and try to make things better for your friends, or just get out.

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I finally got to play FtQ. It was amazing. I noticed gestures toward this in the examples above, but I’m wondering how successful it has been to include multiple prompt decks. I’m thinking along the lines of Dialect or The Quiet Year, where seasons or ages get different kinds of prompts. Has anyone created multiple prompt decks and, if so, did they complicate things unnecessarily?

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