This is my contibution to this year’s Game Chef competition. It’s a role-casting game.
I am not a native speaker. What could possibly go wrong?
This might be a strage idea. I guess, I’ve had stranger ones.
Hi there, or “moin” as we like to say in northwestern Germany.
I am PiHalbe, that’s German for “pi-over-two” and this is my contribution to 2015s Game Chef Game Design competition. English is not my first language, so bear that in mind.
This year’s theme is “A Different Audience”. As I’m already podcasting, I’d like to try to make a game for an already existing audience: podcasters and podcast-lovers. I call this a “pod-playing game” … err … try that again: a “role-casting game”.
This is the first episode of a game I am opening. I will first explain the rules. Every new game should do this to allow for easily hacking the rules.
A role-casting game is always public. There are casters and potentially an audience, anyone can be the audience. In particular, this game’s narrative will be available for listeners from the future. The first caster opens the game. He states the rules and sets the initial settings of the game.
After the first episode is published, anyone can enlist themselves as the next caster. The game creator alots him 24 hours to submit a follow-up episode. This means that there will be forced stillness in the game for some time. If the submitted recording holds any inappropriate content, the game creator may object. The game creator should take care that all episodes are published in a single podcast feed. This process then reiterates until either the game creator closes the game or no follow-up episodes are submitted.
An episode should consist of about 3 to 7 minutes of content. Every caster as a single point of view. No later caster may use their point of view. If a caster records another episode, they should resume their previous perspective.
The theme of the game should capture contemporary issues. Pick items from your personal view on the news and work on them. The settings does not have to be contemporary, it may be historic, futuristic, fantastic or similar. However, it should capture issues you think about right now. This will make it more interesting for listeners from the future.
There are a few mechanics in this game, as well. All will be addressed via reserved phrases. For a new perspective (the casters first appearance in a game), the episode should always start with “Last night, I had the strangest dream …”, followed with a brief dream sequence. Following casters will use elements from the previous dream in their dream sequence.
The second reserved phrase is “… is special. If … then … except ….” This introduces an important element in the narrative. Future casters may refer to this element and either use it in the special fashion or the exception. Using a special element in this way grants the power to retroactively alter a fact from another perspective and reveal it as fallible. For this, use the reserved phrase “Actually, it turned out that ….”
The last one is: “I wonder ….” A caster may ask a question that future casters should answer. They may not answer their own questions. A question must be answered until the end of the third episode thereafter. Every caster has to listen to the last three episodes before recording a new one.
These are, again, the reserved phrases:
* “Last night, I had the strangest dream.” to phrase the perspective’s introduction.
* “… is special. If … then … except ….” to create a special element, that might go either way.
* “Actually, it turned out that ….” to prove an earlier statement by another perspective wrong, after the caster has incorporated a special element.
* “I wonder ….” to pose a question that the other casters must answer within three turns.
Anyone of you could be the next caster. Don’t be shy!
This marks the beginning of this game, tagged “Over-agitation”.
Last night, I had the strangest dream. I was living in a small mushroom at the end of the forest. There were no doors, I was trying to get out. I had to chew my way through its tissue, a hundred-and-twelve eyes watching me from the hymenium, ready to betray me to the gardener.
I did not think about it too long, though. I really had another things to take care of. Fore example the sound of propellers, echoing back and forth from the mountain range. I am sure, they were looking for me. For us. The three of us, Genna, Ralph and me, we have had quite the time, forging videos. We thought they were hilraious. At first. Yes, they were political, but we thought we could not change anything about the world’s global situation, with all its wars, wars to come and political, cultural and financial crises.
The idea came when we saw the Scandal about Greece’s new financial minister and a video recording of him, giving Germany the finger. And then another recording of a satirist claiming that they had doctored the video. Nobody cared about all the billions of Euros, but they all talked about that finger. We could make that happen. We had our expertise in video editing, satire, politics, publicity. So, on we went.
At first, people just laughed. Then came the first protests in the streets in Germany, after we doctored an appearance of Obama in Berlin to perfectly lip sync the German words “ich liebe Euch doch alle” as in “but I DO love all of you”. Yeah, the Mielke quote is not quite right, but effectful nonetheless. Especially from the person surveilling the entire planet to the people how lived under similar surveillance for too long. German politics made quite the effort to level the agitation, but severe damges to our countries’ relations stuck.
Of course we were not that naive. We took our precations. Made our manipulations hard to trace back to our persons. Now, we moved into the mountains, only communicating via satellite connection. Our cottage is special. If they come to get us, we can always leave through an underground tunnel into a cave except when the rainfall is too strong and floods the passage.
The propellers sound closer, now. We brew a hasty cup of coffee. I wonder if they will pinpoint us here, eventually.
And now, it’s your turn.