Marvel Heroic RPG Session 3

A mind-control mishap leads to an epic throw down between Black Widow and Wolverine.

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4 Responses to “Marvel Heroic RPG Session 3”

  1. Justin Says:

    Hey, I just finished the third Marvel actual-play and I have a few questions about the mechanics and your play experience (for context, I have given the Marvel book a solid once-over but not a really detailed read).

    1. It sounds like there’s a lot of front loading for any use of the mechanics. There are many decisions to make about what dice to use and how to use those dice, so, even with experience and familiarity, this seems to make for fairly “bumpy” play, a lot of stopping to assess options and devise strategies. Do you agree? If so, do you think that’s a product of the rules or some other factors at your table?

    2. When you try to accomplish something other than beat someone up (physically, mentally, or emotionally), do you just roll against the Doom Pool and accomplish the thing if you win? I’ve been struggling to figure out this part of the game, so if your play experience has shed any light on this matter I’d appreciate your insight.

    3. It seems like you folks are spending a lot of time talking about the fiction as opposed to engaging with the fiction as it happens. In many cases it sounds like the fiction is some after-the-fact rationalization of what happened in the dice. In the second session, I think Troll said something along the lines of “Any medium experienced bullshitter can bring them in.” “Them” referring to Distinctions. If this is true of how the game functions, then it seems like the fiction is necessarily a secondary part of play. Do you think this is true? If so, do you think this dynamic emerges from the rules or from some particular practices of your play group?

  2. Kevin Weiser Says:

    Hey Justin, great questions!

    1: The Player side of thing is a little front loaded, but not so much as, say, Burning Wheel. There’s a few core mechanics you need to understand, and it’s very important to pay close attention to your SFX (as Troll learned with Daredevil). Mostly your questions come down to two options: Set up myself (or another Player) or do something NOW. That’s about it, really. The Watcher, however, has to know what the fuck is up. For them, the rules are VERY front loaded, because you have to have a key understanding of how the Doom Pool affects pacing and challenge for the Players.

    2: Yes. In our upcoming final session, we try to do some investigation by rolling against the doom pool. 3 failures. We got nowhere. The rules attempt to covering this with the uber-generic “Be sure failure is interesting.” Thanks, that’s really helpful! :/ It really needs something like Apocalypse World or Mouse Guard, where failure gives the GM mechanical things they can do that hurt, but also continue the story. In my opinion the non-combat parts of MarvelRPG are pretty weak, which is strange, because Smallville is all about that, and they both use the same core system.

    3: I’m not quite sure if this is our lack of familiarity with the rules, or if Marvel RPG is set up this way. This is one of the weaknesses of our format: we rarely get enough time with each system to REALLY dig in and see what it’s all about. That said, it does look like, yes, this is the exact opposite of Apocalypse World and Lady Blackbird. You say what you want to do, what factors are involved, then roll and suss everything out, THEN you have the fiction.

  3. Jim Ryan Says:

    Very cool. The way the fight turned out actually kept the thing that happened to Black Widow significant to the plot. Well done, chaps. :)

  4. Marvel Heroic Roleplaying: Collected Miscellanies Says:

    […] Episode Three – April 25th, 2012 […]

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