Welcome to the AquaVertigo Playtesting post.
The following games are in playtest:
If you are interested in participating in a playtest of one or more of the above games, please let me know in the contact form below.
I attended Gamehole Con in Madison, Wisconsin, for the first time in 2018, where I got to hang out and play a few board games with my friends, such as My Little Scythe.
Additionally, I was able to playtest several games which I have in development. See below:
The game began with an overview of related genres and influences, and introducing the four players to the eerie world of Dark Well. This was the first time that I had tested the diceless / random token-based system.
The game began with an overview of the setting and with Fate Accelerated. Two had experience with Fate Accelerated; one had familiarity; one had none, but had just purchased Fate Dice.
The game began with an overview of influences and the concept of magical realism at the heart of the game with the four players.
The game began with an overview of the genre of gothic horror and influences with the five players.
I had table tents for six games for the four players to choose from: Armageddon Accelerated, Blood & Violence, Dark Well, NightMirror, Space Station Omega, and Vigilance. The group selected Space Station Omega (SSO).
Setup: The players leaned heavily into their love for The Expanse and we built an exciting story involving space miners, a space religion, and an Earth-centric military power, with a mafia-like sub-organization and in-laws generated from the character relationships.
Story: There were a number of nice character moments in between the larger scenes and actions. Ultimately, all major factions put aside their differences, coming together and locating the terrorist cell. The game closed in a wonderful final scene the characters all contributed to dealing with the threat in their own way.
System: SSO is currently somewhere between Cortex Plus and Cortex Prime. The goal is to embrace Cortex Prime once it is more done and then tweak for the needs of the game. The creation of our Space and Station continues to really get the players excited and invested in the game. We made heavy use of complications and opportunities generated, and mostly used simple actions.
They say the World is vast and uncertain, modern and ancient from dusk to dawn. The World is connected by travelers, like you moving in and out of distant Civilizations: strange hollow lands that speak to you and remind you of where you came from—why you’re with them, fellow Vagrants, you companions of the Road, and in this World. Each day brings new Hopes, Needs, and Fears—some you share, some you steal, perhaps one day you’ll know when it’s time to leave the Road behind you for Blood & Violence.
A rare kind of people, called Vagrants, move between Civilizations along the Road searching for new Stories to learn and share throughout the World, with Hopes, Needs, and Fears as their companions. Eventually, Vagrants settle down as a Civilian, become a Legend, or wander forever as a Reaver along the Road.
Vagrants come from all walks of life and any Civilization. They are people who, for whatever reason, have decided to leave their old life behind to travel along the Road. Many take on alter egos. Few use or share their real identities. Some ply old or pick up new trades. All Vagrants share Stories with those they meet for good or ill results, changing lives and reshaping the world.
In magical realism stories, the world is still grounded in the real world as we might know it, but fantastical elements are considered normal in this world with the lines between fantasy and reality blurred. This includes talking objects, dead or spirit characters, telepathy, robotic caretakers, moving landscapes, and so much more as normal aspects. As a result, the magic of the stories are left unexplained.
Also, stories in this style do not necessarily follow a typical arc of beginning, middle and end, and some magical realism stories are used to critique society, especially in parts of the world that were colonized or oppressed and exploited by outsiders.
This refers to the journey stories of Vagrants’ experiences along the Road and visiting with different civilizations. Part of the game involves mapping the World on notecards and using this map to help define the goals and way that they’ll proceed.
Blood & Violence is meant to be played in an episodic format with Vagrants entering and exiting as the story or players need. The Vagrants are travelers in search of stories to learn and to share with others, and along the way the Vagrants influence the lives of those they meet. Some Vagrants decide to settle down in a community giving up their traveler ways, or become a Reaver and roam the Road forever, or possibly become Legends of the World.