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TOPIC: What do you give new groups?

What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1677

  • Phill
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Hi

What resources, table etc do/​would you give new players/​groups to help them get to grips with Blade?
I’ll have a copy of the rules and an addi­tional copy of the appen­dices avail­able but what otter hand­outs are peo­ple find­ing use­ful?
Cheers
Paul
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What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1678

  • IanP.
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Phill wrote:
What resources, table etc do/​would you give new players/​groups to help them get to grips with Blade?

Per­son­ally, noth­ing. For me, it is prefer­able if I intro­duce a player to the rules rather than hav­ing them buy their own copy of the rules and read them, or receive hand­outs and read them, ahead of the game. A new player is likely to come to the con­clu­sion that the game — specif­i­cally com­bat — is dif­fi­cult. It is bet­ter if rules are intro­duced when there is an in-​game con­text, when they are needed.

Now even­tu­ally you want all play­ers to be able to run their com­bats with­out the ref­eree doing any of the lookups. A new player though should be shielded from this. Let them play, let oth­ers do the lookups.

Of course you’ll have play­ers who want to know every­thing in order to opti­mize their play at every deci­sion point. More power to them. Try to cor­rect any mis­un­der­stand­ings as you go.

Good luck!

Regards,
Ian P.
Fama nihil est celerius
– Noth­ing is swifter than rumour…
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What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1680

  • Michael
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Phill wrote:
What resources, table etc do/​would you give new players/​groups to help them get to grips with Blade?
Every­thing Ian said. And here’s what I do with new­bies:

Attribute and Skill res­o­lu­tion is pretty straight­for­ward, but com­bat isn’t, as befits a com­bat sys­tem empha­siz­ing player over char­ac­ter skill, and needs grad­ual intro­duc­tion. At the begin­ning, I only make avail­able Steal­ing Ini­tia­tive and a few Maneu­vers like Feint and Counter, intro­duc­ing a few new ones every ses­sion. I hand the play­ers index cards or a list explain­ing what the Maneu­ver does (only what it does, I don’t bother writ­ing down the actual mechan­ics).

I run a train­ing com­bat against a mook, and then against two or three mooks at once, demon­strat­ing how to use Ter­rain Checks to han­dle sev­eral oppo­nents. Then I run a train­ing com­bat against a sin­gle oppo­nent of their own cal­i­bre, demon­strat­ing the dan­gers of under­es­ti­mat­ing an oppo­nent, over­comit­ting to the attack, and being met with a pow­er­ful Counter.

I make them real­ize their char­ac­ters’ capa­bil­i­ties com­pared to aver­age pro­fi­cient peo­ple — I show them the NPC stats from the Appen­dices and have them com­pare them to their PCs’. The com­bat train­ing should have shown them that a war­rior PC is eas­ily the match of any two or even three “nor­mal” pro­fes­sional fight­ing men — now I specif­i­cally point out how they out­class the vast major­ity of NPCs by virtue of their Attrib­utes and their default use for Skills. When they become all a-​swagger, I remind them of what hap­pened whan they under­es­ti­mated the oppo­nent and fell foul of his Counter.

I give them a hand in cre­at­ing their char­ac­ters, specif­i­cally advis­ing them against wast­ing points by pur­chas­ing Skills and mul­ti­ple Pro­fi­cien­cies at low rat­ings. If they found that they still blun­dered, I allow them to re-​arrange their dis­tri­b­u­tion of points after the first ses­sion or two.
Bow down: I am the emperor of dreams;
I crown me with the million-​colored sun
Of secret worlds incred­i­ble, and take
Their trail­ing skies for vest­ment when I soar.

Clark Ash­ton Smith, The Hashish Eater or The Apoc­a­lypse of Evil
Last Edit: 5 years 6 months ago by Michael.
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What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1681

  • Phil
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Looks like we are on the same page!
Typ­i­cally for my groups I set aside a full ses­sion for our first meet­ing as fol­lows:

1) The group first cre­ates their char­ac­ters and gets their PAs sorted out.
2) I then begin spar­ring matches with them, grind­ing through lots of mooks. After enough of this we slowly begin intro­duc­ing basic Maneu­vers into the equa­tion. As time in the ses­sion passes I have them square off against each other, per­form their own lookups in the core rules, and finally wrap things up with the entire group wad­ing into a tough super­nat­ural crea­ture.

By the time this ini­tial ses­sion ends, every­one usu­ally has a very good feel for com­bat and can basi­cally hold their own in melee. Begin­ning the next ses­sion we are off to adventure!
Last Edit: 5 years 6 months ago by Phil.
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What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1682

  • Mozusuke
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Sim­i­lar (so far)

A cou­ple of trial scraps against mooks.
Then a scrap against each other, where they typ­i­cally beg­ing to explore more cre­ative tac­tics
Then an ini­tial sce­nario with a rea­son­ably low chal­lenge level.
The a sce­nario with real threat.

As far as reosources are con­cerned, unitl I get hold of hard copies (!) I give out

the tables show­ing dif­fer­ent maneu­ver costs (offenisve and defen­sive)
the tables show­ing pro­fi­ciency defaults
the images of loca­tions for dif­fer­ent types of attack
A sta­pled copy of hte wound tables (printed 2 pages per sheet, dou­ble sided) on the table for com­mon ref­er­ence.

As far as ini­tial char­ac­ter cre­ation is con­cerned. so far this has been done iter­a­tively, but in gen­eral a dis­cus­sion with the group about types of cam­paigns and adven­tures, and types of char­ac­ters, and ealry indi­ca­tions of PAs. And agree­ment on focus attrib­utes across the group.

Then through neces­sity, a bit of indi­vid­ual work on rolling up and set­ting PAs (leav­ing one or two clear) .

Then a group ses­sion intro­duc­ing char­ac­ter, re-​aligining as nec­es­sary and com­plet­ing PAs.
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What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1683

  • Phil
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Mozusuke wrote:
Sim­i­lar (so far)
A sta­pled copy of hte wound tables (printed 2 pages per sheet, dou­ble sided) on the table for com­mon reference.

Dave, just out of idle curios­ity, are the descrip­tion ele­ment of the wound tables used by your group (or your­self) at all? If so, do you read them out ver­ba­tim, or add them as part of a more ad-​libbed narrative?
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What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1685

  • Mozusuke
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Phil wrote:
Dave, just out of idle curios­ity, are the descrip­tion ele­ment of the wound tables used by your group (or your­self) at all? If so, do you read them out ver­ba­tim, or add them as part of a more ad-​libbed narrative?

The lat­ter. They add colour and act as a start­ing point as to nar­ra­tive, but some­times need con­text spe­cific inter­pre­ta­tion. (but that is all good stuff, and I don’t think it could be oth­er­wise). For mooks we ref­er­ence them quickly for colour and a sense of what hap­pened. For more sig­nif­i­cant moments, I use them as a start­ing point. — we tend to ref­er­ence them as inspi­ra­tion for what actu­ally hap­pened.

One more thing, I have two ‘groups’. One is hard-​core long-​in-​the-​tooth gamers and role-​playes, and the other is a young teenager (my son) — he par­tic­u­larly enjoys the ‘colour’. But in all cases, encour­ag­ing a focus on graphic out­comes rather than ‘just num­bers’ is a good thing, and the text encour­ages that , whether you take it ver­ba­tim or as inspiration.
Last Edit: 5 years 6 months ago by Mozusuke. Rea­son: spelling
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What do you give new groups? 5 years 6 months ago #1686

  • Phil
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I am glad you are get­ting good use of the descrip­tive ele­ments! When Michael and I began adding them we had a very good time. Although some of them (okay, a lot of them!) do come across as tongue-​in-​cheek, our aim was to try and cap­ture some of the cin­e­matic vagaries of pulp com­bat.

Sound like our gam­ing sit­u­a­tion is quite sim­i­lar! I too have a reg­u­lar crew and a seper­ate long dis­tance game run­ning with my son.

Good Stuff!

Phil
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