Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Art : cWOD

Before 2009
The Art
cWOD

I once ran a game which was greatly inspired by movies such as Dark City and comics such as The Invisibles.  What I came up with was a game called The Art, which was even more infamous among my friends for having an intensely evolving website during the game itself.  Extra pages would pop-up overnight, new images would offer clues, and hidden links were abound.

If you want, you can try exploring a remnant of the site here.

The game had four players, which each player learning more about this ability to affect reality called The Art as the game progressed.  Part of the fun was how the characters could create magickal effects in the game by doing things as players.

The game also made use of what I called The Lurker System.

What is the Lurker System
Lurkers are players who are not part of the main table top sessions, but at times might guest in a session or may affect the plot indirectly through out-of-game moves. All Lurkers represent a particular NPC (Non Playing Character) who exists in the game. A Lurker, for example, might contact another Lurker and send him misleading information. Such actions are reflected in the table top game, and can lead to unexpected plot twists and sudden dramatic moments.
Lurkers are requested to have at least one, if not all of the following:
A working Email Address
A working cellular phone, with the willingness to cover for all the expenses that may be incurred using the phone.
A willingness to show up when vital for the story as a guest player in a game session.Lurkers tend to have certain knowledge of things that the Players would find very useful to gain. Gaining a Lurker's trust, however, remains in the providence of IC (In Character) communication.
Who thought of the Lurker System?
I came up with the Lurker System a few years ago when I ran a game called Sacrament. In that game, I had created a living, evolving website that reflected many of the game events as time passed. Soon, even people who weren't playing the game were perusing the site in hopes of learning more interesting information on the game. These people, whom I could not accomodate on a normal game session, wanted to some how be part of the game.
The Lurker System was born. 

The game had a very healthy host of characters in the game.  The players were composed of Alex, Henry, Seth and Trisha.  The game also had Patrick, Rico, Tommy and Cliff as Lurkers, who actively sent the players in-game information and clues through text messages, emails and other means.  One even met up with a player in secret to hand him a message.



Amusingly, there were also three people who frequented the game sessions simply to watch it unfold:  Patrick, Tommy and Nikos.

You can find the very informative Chronicle page here.


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