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Introduction and Important info

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Introduction and Important info

Post by Mavspade on Wed Jul 22, 2015 9:56 am

Welcome to Naukati Lake!  We are a Changeling the lost community powered by FATE.
The goal of this community is to have a community ran Changeling game with a focus on cooperative storytelling.

What do we mean by cooperative storytelling? We want a game where the players work alongside the storytellers to help create a breathing, engaging narrative with twists, turns and conflict worthy of book or television. We believe that the plot of any RPG, like any good story, should be pushed forward by character choices, their conflicts, and their relationships. The storytellers will help facilitate the game and be the arbiters of rules, but we want to empower our players to have a say in the narrative and the story we are telling as a group. In the end we want this to be a game about telling an engaging and powerful narrative where players help shape that narrative through their characters, but we are all working together as players to tell that story.

To that end we have decided to convert Changeling to being powered by the new FATE system. We found that the system is intuitively designed to allow players a level of agency to the outcome of the story and gives them plenty of tools to help with that. We have worked hard to convert Changeling so that the core of that game lives and flourishes in this system.

Because we are running a cooperative storytelling game, we have a few expectations and guidelines. First and foremost we are running a transparent process game; characters sheets are in the open, players are encouraged to talk Out of Character about their character’s interactions and choices, and Storytellers will be transparent with NPC’s and setting information as well.  

Cooperative gaming also requires two big components: communication and consent. We want all choices in the game to be something players are interested in seeing (Please see Themes/Mood to know what style we are going for below), and that any major actions taken by characters that effect others are agreed upon by all parties.

What about Out of Character vs In Character knowledge? We believe that players having meta knowledge of coming narrative, character’s actions and goals helps build interesting tension and dynamics In Character. We expect players to be able to clearly distinguish what the characters know and do In Character from what the players know and do Out of Character. I.E Just because you know the Loyalist Assassin is going to strike in this scene Out of Character, does not mean your character knows in-game… and you should roleplay accordingly. This effort helps all of us tell this story as a team.


Character vs Character: We’d like our game to be driven by our players, with a diverse cast of characters doing the moving and shaking in our narratives, rather than NPCs. If two player characters have conflicting interests or agendas, this creates opportunities for drama and excitement! Player characters may thus be antagonists to each other at times, and we welcome and encourage this, so long as everyone remembers that such a relationship is to remain In Character, and not extend to Out of Character context. We hope our transparent philosophy of rules and gameplay will encourage characters towards dramatic and conflict-based actions. Some of the best written and most intense media, such Game Of Thrones, thrive on the main characters being pitted against each other because of their personal views and aspirations. It makes for excellent story.

An Example of Healthy PC vs. PC Conflict: Tim and Mary each have a character in Naukati Lake. Their characters are bitter rivals, past transgressions established in their backstories. Both Tim and Mary have previously spoken and agreed on this In-Character relationship, because they want to explore that narrative. In-game Mary’s character is attempting to enact a dangerous occult ritual to earn the respect of her Court. Tim hears about this, and thinks this would be a good opportunity for creating dramatic tension, his character’s best chance for revenge. Tim talks to Mary Out of Character to inform her he is interested in having his character try to interfere with the ritual. Mary agrees that this will make for a dramatic and enjoyable scene, and consents. Mary’s character performs her ritual until interrupted by Tim’s character and his Motley, cloaked and masked. A fight breaks out, and Tim gets the upper hand, delivering a tremendous blow to Mary’s character, enough to take her out of the scene. The Storyteller, Mary, and Tim talk about what the result of this is. Neither Mary nor Tim are interested in Mary’s character dying yet, so instead Mary’s character suffers a Extreme Consequence, her eye is maimed in the fight but she makes it out alive. Her character’s ego is damaged and her eye will never be the same again.

In the example above Tim and Mary spoke Out of Character and worked cooperatively to tell an engaging story. Mary’s character suffered greatly, her ritual ruined and her eye maimed, but none of this happened without the players’ joint consent. She embraced this scene because it created a dramatic and enjoyable story. If Mary was uncomfortable with any of these results she is allowed to veto and look for options she finds more enjoyable. This scenario represents the sort of things that may happen in this game, dramatic, and we hope players will be comfortable embracing these sorts of scenarios.


The Game:
The game is set in Naukati Lake, a fictional town in upper North West Washington not to far from the Canadian border. It’s a secluded hunting town with a population of a little over 10,000 individuals scattered along the lake and the woods in the area. A full run down of the setting can be read  HERE. The game focuses on the exploits and dark adventures of the Changelings who live in this town and their struggle with the fae forces they call “The Keepers of the Woods” .

Mood: This game is a modern fantasy. We are fully embracing the Dark Magical Realism and horrific fables. Focusing on creeping horror, unsettling dread and madness. Hard choices await the cast of this story as they take actions they believe that will benefit their community and their own desires. The game will be tinted with the dark magick rituals of the Freehold, the haunting of Faeries and a smattering of adult fairytale themes through out.  This atmosphere will create characters of varying shades of grey, and actions they may take will alter those around them. If you feel like in game conflict between characters is something you're not comfortable with this might not be the place for you.


The Storytellers: We have Four storytellers on staff here to make sure the game runs smoothly. What do these storytellers do?
- We answer questions about game mechanics.
- We run and plot out major Storyline scenes
- We handle character sheets and character mileposts.
- We have fun and are fun.

Each player will have an assigned Storyteller based on their character’s Motley (see character submission) and this Storyteller will be your point person to direct your questions to, and they will manage your character sheets. They are the ST you reach out to if you want to accomplish something in character and they run scenes for your Motley (but won't be the only ST doing so, just most of the time). We believe this system will ensure players will build rapport with an ST and make sure our staff does not get burned out trying to help everyone.

Game Time/ Play Set Up:   As we are using both Forum and Chat based gaming on this site we have structured our Game into time frames and types of scenes to help facilitate play. Our site does not run on a Day to Day Scale, real world time does not affect characters in game time.


Season Arc: We have broken the game up into what we call Season Arcs (like a show, not like the courts). Each Season Arc will focus on several key Plot lines with a rising action through line, ending in a climax. We estimate each Season Arc will last roughly 3 to 4 months of real world time and encompass roughly 10 plot scenes per Motley.  


Plot scenes: These scenes are scenes run by the storyteller staff which pushes the main narrative forward. These scenes will be either run through our chat service or through the Online Game table Roll20 https://roll20.net/  Each plot scene will be scheduled before hand by the Storyteller running it. We estimate each Storyteller will be running a scene on a bi weekly schedule. Roughly meaning there will be roughly two Plot scenes run a week.

Transparency and Scene synopses: Before every scene, the storytellers will give a brief synopsis of the intentions behind the scene. Alongside that the storyteller will clearly inform the stakes of the scene. Example would be:

Hedge Hunting: The Motley enters the hedge to investigate and report back about “The Muted Abomination,” a hedge beast that has been causing problems in the Freehold. However, things become complicated when the Changelings find its lair...and discover it’s hunting them.
Stakes: In this scene the characters are trying to gather as much info as they can about the beast. If successful they will find what the creatures goals are and its weakness. Failure can result in the party being pretty beat up, wounded and even lost in the hedge.

Note in this example in the stakes, characters goals are set and what could go wrong is listed. It should be noted “Death” was not listed as a result. The players don't need to be worry about their characters dying in this scene. We want players always to be aware when character death is a possibility so its never a surprise out of character should it occur.

Social Scenes: We are huge fans of social roleplay and want to include it in our site to allow you to explore relations between characters and to develop your own character as well.  Players can use either the Chat service or the Forum to play their social scenes. Any scene played in the chat should be copied and pasted into a forum post, otherwise it will not be counted as canon. Social scenes should be marked after which Plot Point they take place, as a social scene in the forum could run long past other plot points this helps us keep continuity.

Lastly social scenes can be simply social engagements and what we refer to as Coffee Shop Roleplay, light and fluff. But we would like to encourage players to be courageous in these social scenes and set up conflict, stakes and dramatic scenes that shift and alter relationships.  players are allowed to use dice, and Fate mechanics as they see fit in these scenes, however if the characters take actions to alter setting, violent conflict, a storyteller should be notified to moderate the scene as it continues.

Season breaks: Between each Season Arc, the storytellers will take a 2 month plot break. During this time social scenes are still welcome however! The storytellers use this time to recharge their batteries and also go over the character choices and events of the previous season to help build the arc for the season after. At this time new character submission will become open.
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Mavspade

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