39 thoughts on “7th Sea Quickstart v2 FAQ

  • Since you posted the Sorte Deck Preview I’m WAY more interested in the deck and chips than using dice. Any specific hot-fixes for being able to use a standard 52-card French deck? I like the style that some of the Court cards bring to the table but I’m edgy about how much swing they may have. Also, do they have any default numerical value or are they essentially a 0?

    1. You could play with a 52 card deck, ignoring the Dame Cards and Arcana cards. Also, yes, the court cards have a value of zero. We’re toying with a mechanic that would allow you to do something else with them as well, making it a player choice how to use them. Not sure yet. If you think of something, let us know. 🙂

      1. And quick follow up. There is a severe deficiency in the availability of pirate/swashbuckling Tarot decks on the market. Perhaps maybe some Nationality themed Sorte decks as further stretch goals? 🙂

        1. Art is the gatekeeper in this case. We want to pay people what they’re worth and art is expensive. We’ll see.

          1. I agree that there is a distinct lack of pirate RPG tarot decks on the market, but instead of multiple decks, might I recommend making a guide to using them as actual tarot cards? Could be interesting…

          2. Instead of multiple decks, might I recommend writing a guide to using the Sorte deck as an actual tarot deck? Could be interesting…

  • Can you please clarify how Wounds now work as a Consequence? The explanation seems clear in the rules, and the adventure Risk box seems to have been adjusted to reflect Wounds as a group consequence, but then the walk through of how the risk works immediately after is confusing because it references the Hero taking two wounds if they haven’t spent raises.

    Also, under taking wounds for another hero, it says a hero who wants to take wounds for someone else must have spent a raise. Does that mean must have spent a raise in the Risk to show that they were a part of it, or must have spent a raise specifically to allow them to take those wounds, or must spend a raise to take each wound as it had been previously? (The last option isn’t economical)

    1. From reading the rules in the Quickstart I got the impression that the PCs did all the rolling and it was the GMs job to decide on consequences and opportunities, a very neat idea. Battling Brutes is quite well explained but I am just unsure as to how to handle combat with Villains. Do Villians get to state intent and roll their own dice ?

  • Thanks for putting up this FAQ. I’m considering using the QS as a one shot, but I’ve been looking for a place to ask a # of questions I have.

    1. Would you ever require players to spend more than once raise to accomplish their intent if it’s particularly difficult?

    2. During an action sequence when a player has already completed his intent (and ignored or resisted the consequences), what does he do with any remaining raises? If he had a bounty of raises, can he complete another intent? He can create opportunities for other players, which seem kind of like intents. If he knocks the gun out of the guards hand (as in your example), can he also pick it up, or must that be another PC?

    3. A PC can never achieve another PC’s intent. When a group tries to escape a burning building, and one PC #1 fails to generate any raises, what do you say to PC #2 who wants to use extra raises to carry out PC #1?

    4. In the QS on page 7 under “Wounds as Consequences” you say that the consequences are resisted as a group and any remaining wounds hit all players at the end of the round. On page 10 under “Using Multiple Raises For a Single Action” you say that have to commit any raises to resisting a consequence as a single action, and afterwards can’t negate any more wounds. I’m having trouble reconciling those two passages. Could you clarify?

    Thanks for your time.

  • Hi, I am looking forward to the playing the new quick start in a couple of days. First though I just wanted to say, “Please don’t forget Cathay!”

  • Imagine I have 2 resolve and find myself on three wounds. I take three more wounds. Which of the following situations is true:

    A. I fill up the next three available boxes, including the starburst dramatic wound box, leaving me with one box of the second track filled.

    B. As soon as the fourth and final box in the first track is filled, I also fill the dramatic wound box. The remaining two wounds are applied to the next track.

    C. Taking the fourth wound triggers the dramatic wound, and all other wounds from that source are ignored.

    D. Filling the dramatic wound with the second wound applied stops any more damage from being applied from that source.

  • We’re giving this a try in a few days, when our group of old can finally all get together, so we may be able to figure this out then. But in reading over the quickstart rules I see a system for fighting against brute squads, and a system for dueling that seems pretty much 1 vs 1. (Although I’m guessing it won’t be too hard to expand it to more than one per side, maybe…) So my question: how to handle the other fights? A villain supported by brute squads versus the PCs, for example? Then throw in a couple of henchmen on the villain’s side, and some allies (or even allied brute squads) on the players’ side to make it an epic fight! I guess basically I’m not seeing a “traditional” combat system (other than the mention of just wanting to cause wounds to someone as a goal, then the note about “no dodging”) – something other than a duel or a PC vs brutes.

  • When Villains use influence to “buy” things (Like other villains etc.) is that influence “tied up” in the process? Or is is spent and lost forever? E.x. If I have my BBEG buy a strength 5 villain for 2 influence points. Does he loose those 2 points from his influence score? Or, does he still have those points – but they’re just “tied up” in the villain so they aren’t available to be used for anything else? If they are “tied up” what happens if the players kill the hireling? Are the points then lost? Or does the villain then get to reinvest those points?

    Also — what determines whether a “scheme” is successful? I get it if the players directly oppose a scheme — but I think the idea seems to be that the players might know about the schemes, but won’t necessarily be able to stop them all. Do un-opposed schemes automatically succeed? Is there a roll that the villain needs to make behind the scenes?

    Finally – how would you handle the players “finding out” about the schemes?

  • Special Brute Squads. Is there any way to counter the theft or kidnapping effects that certain special brute squads have. Such as the ‘Thieves’ and ‘Pirates’. Say a group of Hero’s are trying to protect something/someone or if they want to prevent the action can they spend a raise? Or would they have to spend a Hero Point? Or does it just happen?


  • Hi John!
    I think it would be great and very usefull for GM if each ability in the core book has examples of consequences and opportunities.

  • Windows of Opportunity

    I think the Windows of Opportunity section may have been pulled out of something which gave it a fuller context, because I can’t seem to nail down just what it means. I had assumed that it was analogous to the event itself having rolled X number of Raises: if the room explodes on Raise 3, Alex rolled 4 Raises and Bianca rolled 2 Raises, then Alex acts, the room explodes, then Bianca acts. Then I got to this: ” as soon as the all of the Heroes have less than 2 Raises, the powder room explodes and everyone takes five Wounds.” What does it mean for “all of the Heroes” to “have” a certain number of Raises?

  • First of all, congratulations ans thanks a lot for that opportunity.

    Afther study the rules, I must to tell you that the rules of the bad guys are something that I will use like houserules in other RPG’s and also that the Opportunities are something that my team used since the first day in 1st Edition.

    I also found holes. But I’m really sure that you are going to fix many of the things that we think they are failures afther many playtests and the final rules redaction. But I want to make zoom in few of them out of reddit (Another wonderfull tool). One per country on the border of Five Sails (I really want to know the opinion of Mark Richardson about that place. And why I can recognize Portugal in Montaigne, but that’s another story).

    1W) Why don´t increase the total for Raises by more than 5 using Danger Points? It can be really interesting for difficult tasks when you are doing something difficult “per se”. It’s not the same open the lock of the stables, a wooden chest of a vodecce merchant or the treasure box of the jewelery gild in Kirk. The same if you try to jump 3 meters, 6 meters or 9 meters…

    2W) The darkness count like a Consequence? E.g. ” You hit something in the darkness” (I really, really love the unclarified Consequences)

    3W) Swim with Athletics, Profession (pearl diver) or Sailing?

    4W) Five Sails is a pirate city?

    5W) Can the Consequences came by packs of Wounds? E.g. Falling to a river “2 damage from the fall”, “5 damage by pirannas”

    Thanks a lot and I wish to your team days with 25 hours (I’m really sure that you are going to appreciate a lot that)

  • I would like to know, in the case of consequences, do you have to spell them all out for the players? For example, in the given needle trap example, does a GM need to explicitly state that the needle trap is there, or can you state the possibility of it?

    I personally like surprises and having a group that is cautious and thinks on their feet. So always spelling out consequences seems to take some of that spontaneity and the tension out of certain situations.

  • Mr. Wick, I really like the core risk resolution mechanic, and the action sequence structure. Congrats on such great success with this KS. I am really looking forward to the game. Still, I would propose the following:
    1) a more unified method of handling opponents
    2) adjusting the influence score to a more narrative method
    3) adding an additional, drama heightening option I term a “Clash” to the risk resolution system.

    Opponents and action scenes
    All opponents receive a threat rating (TR). Most opponents will have TR from 1-5, while some truly epic threats may have a higher rating. TR 1 opponents are the equivalent of “Brutes,” the no-name minions the heroes are expected to chew through. TR 2 opponents are more like henchmen; a little tougher, even if there are only 2-3 of them, but not that bad. TR 3 and higher opponents can properly be classed as villains. These opponents should pose a real challenge for PCs. If a hero’s intent is opposed by an opponent (or opponents), and the GM invokes an action scene, the GM first announces the number of raises the hero must spend to accomplish their intent. This can be any number up to the opponent’s TR. That’s right, opponents don’t roll dice. They provide consistent opposition, so long as that opposition fits the fictional position, and the opponent’s intent. In addition to direct opposition of the hero’s intent, each opponent generates consequences and/or opportunities up to its TR. This is in addition to consequences generated by the scene (i.e. burning building, just remember that the GM shouldn’t exempt opponents from a hostile environment). For TR 2+ opponent’s, this might be a single consequence/opportunity requiring a “chunk” expenditure of multiple raises to avoid the consequence or exploit the opportunity, or it might be multiple smaller consequences/opportunities. A 3+ rated opponent might generate some combination of these two possibilities. If the consequence is damage, it is always 1 wound per level of TR. Expenditure of 1 raise by the hero avoids 1 wound. If a hero’s stated intent is to defeat/kill the opponent, spending raises equal to the opponent’s TR deals that opponent a number of dramatic wounds equal to the action sequence’s current round number. Thats right, opponents don’t get regular wounds like heroes, its all or nothing for them. A TR 1 or 2 opponent is defeated when it takes dramatic wounds equal to its TR. An TR 3+ opponent is defeated when it takes dramatic wounds equal to twice its TR. Just like any other risk, raises used to inflict dramatic wounds on opponents cannot be banked or saved from risk to risk. They must all be spent as a single, one-time “chunk.” So, in order to deal a dramatic wound to a threat rating 4 opponent, a hero would need to spend 4 raises from a single roll.

    Opponent narrative effects
    Some opponents are dangerous face to face, while others are dangerous due to their external resources and influence. Some opponents, may be equally powerful (or weak) in all arenas. When heroes face an opponent directly, the GM should judge how much of the opponent’s TR applies. This might fluctuate throughout an action sequence. If the scene starts with a duel of wits, the scheming and manipulative villain might use the full TR to oppose the hero. If a duel ensues, the GM might judge the opponent not as much of a threat in this arena, and adjust the TR accordingly. Opponents may also enact schemes. These should be appropriate to the TR of a villain. The GM doesn’t need to roll for the success or failure of schemes, the GM simply decides based on the fiction established, and the drama trying to be created. When determining schemes outcomes, the GM should be sure to incorporate the actions the heroes have taken.
    TR 1 scheme- attack someone vulnerable.
    Example- a group of guards working for Cardinal Richelieu decides to knock heads amongst the local dock workers, who are staunch allies to the heroes. They succeed, and several of the heroes friends are seriously hurt.
    Modification for fiction- knowing that Cardinal Richeliu’s guards are a sadistic bunch, the hero’s resident pugilist, Finnegan “The Finn” Finny, teaches the dock works to handle themselves. When the guards come around, they get a mouthful…literally.
    TR 2 scheme- claim territory
    Example- Rochefort, at the behest of Richeliu and on grounds of “impropriety,” closes and confiscates the dueling academy used by the hero’s as their based of operations. Modification for fiction- Knowing Rochefort has a nasty gambling habit, one of the hero’s secretly “helps” Rochefort consolidate all of his debts under a single man. Unfortunately, this man is a criminal mastermind of the most brutal sort, with resources and reach to rival Richelieu. The hero’s reveal this when Rochefort arrives to close down the academy, and Rochefort promptly flees the area.
    TR 3+ scheme- destroy a seemingly invulnerable target
    Example- Cardinal Richeliu arranges the King’s assassination. The King dies.
    Modification for the fiction- having invested much time and effort into ferreting out the Cardinal’s plans, the hero’s learn the approximate day and time of the planned assassination. They concoct a plan to intervene…

    Clashes represent key moments in a conflict between heroes and their opponents. This is the moment in the duel when the battered hero stands up, wipes a hand across a bloody mouth, and advances with new purpose. It is the moment when the hero and villain stare each other down as they jockey to see who will strike first. It is the moment when the villain has just insulted the hero’s virtue, and we see the hero’s mind work as the perfect response is generated. It is the moment the villain just revealed he is the hero’s father, and the hero tries to reply without sounding like a whiny little…(ok, just kidding on that one).

    Clashes represent moments of high tension and high drama. They are moments when we see the hero shine and take charge, showing their skills, making a comeback, exploiting a villain’s weaknesses. Mechanically, a hero gets to narrate a Clash by spending raises equal to the opponent’s TR specifically to do so. When a hero “buys” a Clash during a risk, all other raises are spent, wounds taken, consequences suffered…and only then is the Clash narrated. In order to be a valid Clash, the narration must accomplish two things:
    -Foreshadow a moment of triumph for the hero
    -Shift the conflict in mental or physical space

    -Foreshadow a moment of triumph for the hero…i.e.
    Count Riario slammed Leonardo into the wall and thrust with his dagger. Leo caught Riario’s forearm, holding the keen blade at bay. A wordless growl rumbled out of Riario’s throat. He pushed, and the dagger edged inexorably towards the artist’s throat, even as Leo’s free hand shifted towards his belt…

    Or, if you prefer, the “at the table” version: “Riario slams me back against the wall, and tries to stick me with his dagger. I catch it, but he is stronger than me, and has better leverage. He doesn’t notice me reaching for my belt.”

    -Shift the conflict in mental or physical space…i.e.
    Riario circled Leonardo with a deceptive nonchalance. Although Riario’s ruse didn’t fool the painter, Leo was still taken aback by the vicious speed of the Count’s attack. He managed to parry the first two blows, but Riario had more than seized the initiative, he had conquered its soul. Desperate, Leo angled his third parry to catch Riario’s blade in the middle, intending to close and grapple. The Count beat him to it. Both swords clattered to the ground as they crashed together…See above for continuation of the scene.

    The at the table version: “Riario is circling me, acting like he is thinking about whether or not to even attack. I can tell he is like a shark or a tiger. He is just making me wait to die. Even though I know he is going to attack, its still fast and furious when it comes. I can barely keep him off me, so I try to grapple. He’s faster there too, but we both lose our swords as we crash into each other…” See above for continuation.

    In this case, we see the fight shift in physical space by going from swords at range, to daggers and fists. Alternatively, a shift of physical space could mean the sword duel edges onto a windswept balcony, or an already close-in fight crashes through a wall or doorway onto another set piece. We could instead change from physical space, to mental space…

    As the dagger edged inexorably towards the artist’s throat, he said, “I always admired your piety.” Riario’s blade continued forward another centimeter, then stopped. Leo grunted, and said, “The simple surety of it. I wish I understood it.”

    The at the table version: “As Riario pushes the blade forward, I tell him, ‘I admire your piety.’ That stops him for a moment. I go on, trying to get into his head. I tell him I like how sure his piety is, and how I want to understand it.”

    So, in this case, the hero shifts the conflict mid-duel from a physical fight to a duel of wits. I also shifted the foreshadowing to mental manipulation, taking out the part about going for the belt. However, the player could totally have done both. We could also have a shift in mental space from within the context of a physical fight.

    Riario circled Leonardo with a deceptive nonchalance. Although Riario’s ruse didn’t fool the painter, Leo was still taken aback by the vicious speed of the Count’s attack. He barely managed to parry the first two blows. Yet, as his reflexes kept his flesh intact, his mind worked. He analyzed the Count’s movements and timing. As Riaro’s third strike began, Leo responded with a near perfect counterattack. It forced Riario to throw himself sideways lest he suffer a mortal wound. The Count backed away. He circled again. This time, he was not a predator stalking prey. This time, two dark-maned pride kings faced each other on equal terms.

    The at the table version: “Riario is circling me, acting like he is thinking about whether or not to even attack. I can tell he is like a shark or a tiger. He is just making me wait to die. Even though I know he is going to attack, its still fast and furious when it comes. I just barely parry his first two attacks, but I am figuring him out as I do that. When the third one comes, I counterattack, and almost get him. He backs off, and we circle again, but now he sees me as equal.” Note that in this description I rolled the shift in mental space and the foreshadowing together.

    When the hero successfully narrates a Clash, the hero “holds” the raises spent for a future roll. And keep in mind, the player always successfully narrates the Clash. The Clash’s narrative requirements are not a “gotcha” rule for the GM to use to steal player raises. If the initial narration doesn’t fit the requirements, the GM, and the other players, should help the narrating player tweak it until it does. However, this does not mean the narrative context is only fluff. While it is important in a story sense, it is also important in a tactical sense. Once the player narrates the Clash, the GM gains narrative control. The GM narrates the opponent’s response, setting the stage for the hero’s next risk. In order for the hero to use the held raises, in other words, to resolve the Clash, the hero’s action must fulfill the Clash’s promise. The hero’s actions, must in some way, prove the truth of the foreshadowed triumph. If the actions don’t, the hero can’t spend the raises. On the flip side, if they do, the hero must spend the raises. If the Clash is narrated as resolving, it resolves, and the raises become active. This is where the tactics comes in, as the hero may wish to use the raises right away, may wish to save them, or may wish to retain flexibility. After all, since a resolved Clash almost always involves enough raises to deal a dramatic wound, using the raises generated by a resolved Clash to cause a dramatic wound on round 5 of an action scene, is worth much more than having spent those same raises to deal a dramatic wound on round 1. And, any opponent would much rather see those raises spent on round 2, than on round 5. The raises are coming. Its inevitable. The opponent’s trick is to try and make them hurt the least. Granted, the GM is under no obligation to play to the mechanics here. After all, it is the GM’s job to help create a story that highlights the hero’s abilities, not screw the player over. Thus, the GM doesn’t have to be devious about the fiction. If it totally fits for the hero to bank multiple Clashes in order to defeat the opponent in a single, climatic moment, then the GM should work towards that goal as fervently as the player.

    To illustrate how Clashes resolve, take the scenario above in which Riario is pressing the dagger towards Leo, while the inventor makes a sneaky grab for his belt. The GM could narrate Riario just continuing to push. This is the simplest action, and also leaves the player the most freedom. The player could reveal what he was going for (perhaps a taser-like gadget to shock Riario), thereby resolving the Clash, and obligating himself to gain the raises spent on the Clash. However, the player could also delay, keeping us in suspense as to what that hand was doing, and grapple with Riario to keep the dagger off his throat…maybe even get in a lick or two himself in the meantime. If, on the other hand, the GM narrates Riaro going for the pistol in the small of his back, that almost obligates Leo to use that sneaking hand. If he doesn’t, its going to be hard to avoid a metal ball to the brain. Now, the player might come up with a clever work around…a way to oppose Riario’s pistol without resolving the Clash, and kudos to him if he does. Still, this response by the GM puts a lot more pressure on the player to resolve the Clash immediately. The in-between option, would be to have Riario see something in Leo’s eyes, and suspecting danger, give up the dagger thrust, break the grapple, and go for his sword. This doesn’t put Leo in immediate danger requiring use of the sneaking hand, but does require some creativity from the player to keep the Clash from resolving. After all, a small taser gadget is going to be mighty useful in keeping Riario from getting that sword before Leo, and not very useful once the Count has a yard+ of cold steel in his hand…unless Leo does a blade bind in subsequent rounds and electrocutes the f’ out of that sword.

  • Villainous influence: does influence spent on sending henchmen (lesser villains and brutes), producing betrayals and getting data for villain’s Scheme count as influence invested in a scheme?

    If not, potential profit from a Scheme is far less than potential losses. V. risks losing both influence invested and influence used for sending out henchmen e.t.c., while potential winnings won’t even always cover resources spent to achieve Scheme’s goal.

  • Okay, these aren’t so much questions aboutt eh Quickstart itself but more your plans for the contents of it going forward. 🙂

    You’ve mentioned that there’s potential plans to remove the Duelling rules entirely as Action Sequences cover it well enough. I agree with that in principle, but the dueling rules do provide some unique abilities – such as generating Hero Points or preventing wounds while doing damage with a Riposte – that are not covered (I don’t think) by the standard Action Sequence rules. Is it intended that these abilities will become unavailable to characters/swordsmen with the removal of these rules?

    Similarly, the changes to the Swordsman’s School technique for Ambrogia technically give the Swordsman School less interesting abilities than in the previous QS rules. Is this going to be the extent of Swordsman’s Schools – one minor ability – or will their be other abilities, or even tiered abilities as in 1st Edition in the full rules?

    1. I too would like to see interesting abilities for the various schools. In general, I am not a huge fan of static bonuses or trait exchanges. In fact, they way the core resolution mechanic is written I want to let characters use any trait that makes sense with their weapon. That is the way the rest of the skills are written. Say what you intend, and roll the most appropriate trait and skill. I mean, I can use Finesse to Brawl if I am throwing quick jabs, Wits if I am ducking and weaving trying to get in a counter, or Brawl if I am grappling. But, this doesn’t apply to weapons? A character can use a saber for a power swing, and one can feint with a two-handed sword. I see no reason to make trait assignment a whole separate advantage.

      Getting off my soap box, here are some ideas I came up with to convert some of the old schools. My focus was creating abilities that require narrative context. After all, there is no “initiative” in the normal sense of the word in this rules system. Thus, what does it mean for an Aldana fighter to gain “initiative” in the narrative? What does that look like? They mechanical effect is clear, but what actual actions and intent produce it are not. That requires a narrative explanation. Similarly, the Liechtenauer abilities require variably, the blades to be crossed, and not crossed. That means a Liechtenauer player is going to be very careful about describing those situations, as might his opponent, depending on which ability he is trying to avoid.

      -When you are dueling, spend raises equal to the total number of raises your opponent rolled this round. You gain initiative, and your opponent cannot deal you melee damage until they stifle you by spending an equivalent number of raises.
      -When you duel an opponent, use a 2 raise opportunity to enter a combat trance. This opportunity should generally be available unless your character is under some unusual mental or emotional strain. While you maintain the trance and continue to duel the opponent, that opponent generates 2 raises worth of opportunities every round.

      -When you inflict a dramatic wound, you may suffer a dramatic wound to deal one additional dramatic wound.
      -When an opponent you are dueling seizes an opportunity, spend a hero point and describe how that opportunity was one of your tricks. The opportunity is thwarted.

      -Spend a Hero Point and taunt your foe. Be creative…and dirty. Gain a raise for your next risk, instead of a die. Alternatively, ask the GM and your fellow players if your taunt was as infuriating as it was clever. If they say “Yes,” (and they better). Take a die, but count it as if it rolled a 10.
      -When you duel an opponent, use a 2 raise opportunity to push the tempo. The next round is considered one higher. If a villain does this, their first successful attack during the next round does +2 wounds.

      This one is not from the original 7th Sea. It is based on historical German Longsword fighting. Although the longsword wasn’t used much during the historical period 7th Sea is modeled around, it wasn’t complete gone. And, 7th Sea isn’t particularly concerned with historical accuracy anyway.

      -When you cross blades with an opponent, you gain the 2 raise opportunity to wind. Seize it and your opponent faces a 2 raise consequence that causes a dramatic wound unless its avoided.
      -When you are dueling, but stand separate from your opponent, you may declare a mastercut at the start of the round. Spend a hero point, but gain no dice. If you roll and have more raises than your opponent, use all of them to inflict a dramatic wound (or wounds if facing a villain after round 1). Your opponent acts as if they rolled 0 raises.

      1. I should clarify, the wind dramatic wound is always a single dramatic wound. Its not dramatic wounds = current round number.

  • Firrst of all, kudos on the good and hard work. Thank you.

    Second, in the revised quickstart page 23, section “Step #3: Raises”. The Risk was modified to a consequence of 8 wounds. However, this section which describes resolving said risk wasn’t modified. The result is that it looks like the Risk itself is an error if you haven’t read the first version.

    Third, I’m either misreading Aside or it’s broken. Let’s consider noble Ennio. He has a dueling pool of 12 dice in his first round (Main Gauche + Sword + Panache + Description + 1st use). That averages 6 raises on a roll and with his free speed, he is a mighty duelist.

    Ennio is at a party and wants to discuss trade negotiations with a Montaigne noble. He would be at 5 dice (Wits + Diplomacy + Description + 1st use, average 2 raises) .. UNLESS he draws his sword and dagger and then uses an Aside to make the Diplomacy Risk … then he’s at an average or 5 raises …. Why would Ennio ever do ANYTHING without having his sword and dagger in hand?

    Fourth, I like the dueling aspects, but it’s bulky. As I’m prepping to do the quickstart, I think I’m going to make a deck of index cards with all the maneuvers on them for the duel. It occurs to make that a deck that contained a couple copies of all the basic and advanced maneuvers and any specials for the different fancing schools would be a nice stretch goal.

  • In episode 1, Escape Your Pursuers, Step 1:Setting the Stakes: The consequence for crossing the room is 8 wounds. However in Step 3, it appears to only be 2 wounds. Have I missed something or is one of these an error?

  • Mr Wick- While I realize that there are still a ton of moving pieces that you’re likely settling into place are there any plans for a Wits-based Swordsman School much in the same vein that the Ambrogia School (at least as currently constituted in the preview) in based on Panache?

  • Thursday, I’ll be running the duel between Zyta and Ennio. I’ve been running through it solo, to see how it plays out, and a number of things come to mind.

    1) I’m pretty sure Domenica’s player will try to apply one Blessing to Weapon (Sword), and another to Blessing (Dagger). Can a character have multiple Blessings?

    2) Can Hero Points be applied to the Sorte roll?

    3) Raises spent on Sorte also last the entire scene?

    You see where I’m going here. With the judicious application of Hero Points, and a Blessing per weapon, Ennio could easily end up with ten bonus dice on every roll, just from Sorte.

    4) How does Zyta use Advanced Maneuvers, when Villains don’t have Traits?

    1. 5) Do Beats cross rounds? Relevant for the “twice in a row” restriction on Basic Maneuvers, and the loss of your next Beat when using Lunge.

  • Did the quick start tonight, and it was awesome for the most part.

    So to start off, I’ll begin with the parts that worked.

    Flair. The flair was AWESOME!!! It encouraged interaction, scene chewing, creativity, and rewarded activeness. The extra dice came in handy and it was really fun.

    Roll and keep everything: The raises worked really well, and made me think about grouping.

    Fighting brutes: The combat with brutes was quick. Over before it began, and that was pretty nice. These three things worked, really well.

    Danger points. Didn’t really use these, and I was probably doing something wrong. But an explanation on how to get danger points would help.

    The final aspect of the game that really slowed us down was the duel with Zyta. (Everyone seemed to have trouble with this.)

    The rules for the duel seem intuitive, but they didn’t really make sense and it was ultimately seen as a mini game, instead of being a part of the action which 1st Edition captured really well. Zyta’s inability to use advanced knacks came to be a detriment and honestly down right annoying, especially for Riposte.

    I get the villain dice pool, and their two respective attributes, but for advanced knacks, unless it was house ruled that villains could use advanced knacks, it was clunky.

    Ennio is a powerhouse, especially when combined with Sorte blessing. Five raises means five extra dice, in addition to his crazy dice pool. Zyta was a bit of a pushover.

    So to summarize, fighting brutes, the roll and keep everything, and the flair worked really freaking well. The Intents, Consequences and Opportunities, really well done.

    But further explanation on the Danger points, and revision of the duel rules and re-tool the villains would help.

    So with all that being said, what was I doing wrong?

  • Awesome job with this so far, John! When can we expect to see an official blank character sheet?

  • I have a problem with *hidden/secret* Opportunities.

    The QS states (pg. 6) that the GM tells the Players about “The Opportunities your Risk may offer” and gives a specific example of a “secret” document. this happens BEFORE the Risk is attempted.

    If the document is secret, the PCs can’t know it’s an opportunity before taking the Risk. It’s an Opportunity that becomes apparent ONLY AFTER a successful Risk attempt. If however, the Risk attempt is failed, the PC should NOT KNOW there was a secret anything, but the GM has already let the cat out of the bag. This requires the Players to act as if the PCs don’t know of the secret, which will be beyond many people to master. Even if the true nature of the secret is not revealed by the Opportunity declaration, it may be enough for the Players to infer something significant that ordinarily the PCs shouldn’t know.

    My suggestion is that Opportunities should only be things apparent to the PCs before embarking on the Risk or, if they are secret, be fairly trivial (e.g., there is another example of taking the Risk of picking a lock and possible Opportunities being one of the guards being an old trusted friend (shouldn’t be revealed pre-Risk) or two mounted pistols on the wall (not a significant reveal and could possibly be argued as expected by the PCs).

  • Here’s another question.

    Flair (pg. 8) states how bonus dice can be earned but gives no indication at all as to when those bonus dice can be spent. There is the mention of “…this scene” but that is it with respect to timing. The Player is left to infer from the rules as written.

    Are we to assume the bonus die must be spent on the Risk attempt from which it was earned (i.e., immediately)? Or can they be saved up until the end of the scene?

    I would argue against the latter as a PC could accumulate a number of bonus dice through relatively trivial Risks within a scene in order to boost their chances against their ultimate ends (e.g., the Big Bad) at the end of the scene. This feels like gaming the system.

    e.g., I use Deception to get past the guard at the door to the room (1 bonus die). I use Diplomacy as a I carouse my way through the party (2 bonus dice), I Hide in the curtains near the throne (3 bonus dice). Finally, I use Theft to pick the pockets of the King (and spend my accumulated 3 bonus dice whilst doing that; or do I get another bonus die for using yet another skill?)

    This rule needs clarification.

  • This evening, I ran the duel between Ennio and Zyta.

    As I figured would be the case from my testing, Zyta didn’t stand a chance. I suspect she’d have done better as a Strength 12, but I haven’t yet tested that scenario to confirm.

    With the changes to Ambrogia, a blessing from Domenica, another player giving him a Hero Point each round, and Alexsy using his Virtue to cancel Zyta’s use of Danger Dice, Ennio steamrolled her.

    There’s no defined means of using Advanced Maneuvers as a Villain, so Ennio used Bash every round, as Zyta couldn’t counter it.

    He also wisely played a defensive game the first couple of rounds, focusing his heavily damaging attacks for Rounds 3 and 4, when Dramatic Wounds would have a greater effect.

    A couple of things…

    1) At the top of Round 3, when I spent Zyta’s DD to increase Ennio’s difficulty, Alexsy tried using his Virtue to cancel the DD I’d already spent. It’d help to clarify how resolution of an ability like that would actually work. In this instance, I let the DD stand as it had already been declared.

    2) After the duel was done, the other players pointed out that it wouldn’t be particularly fun to sit around waiting for a duel to resolve. That said, they did find the duel mechanics interesting.

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