Monday, April 4, 2011

My first 24-hour RPG - The Strongest Link

The 24-hour RPG design challenge is something I've been itching to try since I first read PACE, itself a product of the challenge from Fred Hicks. I was intrigued with the concept of a sprint game design/writing session that could produce a game from scratch within a very short period of time. It's a lot like the flash fiction challenges I do every week posted up at Terrible Minds (and which you can find my entries for over at Paul Vogt Writes). I think the biggest appeal is that once you complete a challenge, WHAM! Instant game design credit you can claim for yourself.

So this time around I got in on the challenge early on. The rules are very simple. Write a game from start to finish within 24 hours with a theme using two of the four given words. The words for this time were: Amazons, Lust, Chains, and Queen. Obviously there's a lot of possibilities to be had in those four words, but I ultimately ended up going with Lust and Chains (it's not what you think) to develop and complete my first 24-hour RPG The Strongest Link.

Here's the blurb to go along with it over at 1KM1KT where they host all the games from the contest:

The Strongest Link is a game that examines how we make decisions in a group setting. Political in nature, the rules are simple (nine pages total) but work to recreate groups from government to movie studio executives to your average gaming group. 

You decide the setting, your individual character's motivation and direction he'd like to take the group, and then play with your friends through four rounds of debate and vote-casting to ultimately choose who has the best idea (or strongest motivation/force of will) for the group to execute.

It was a lot of fun putting the game together, and the best part is that while it's a very simple rule system, I feel like it offers a very complete play experience and prompts the discussion and theorizing about group decision-making processes that I set out to examine.

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