MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

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Thomas R. Knutsson
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Thomas R. Knutsson » Thu Feb 20, 2014 5:23 pm

trevlix wrote:I loved Phantasmagoria, although I liked Phantasmagoria 2 much better. Better story IMO, and more horror.
I love Phantasmagoria 2 - A Puzzle of Flesh. I've replayed it several times. The first horror moment of the game comes as a complete surprise. It made me jump in my seat the first time I played the game.

*SPOILER*

Sitting working at the computer in a cubicle in an office when suddenly an invisible fist hits you in the face and a disembodied voice says "Freak!"
In the morning, mist comes up from the sea by the cliffs beyond Kingsport. White and feathery it comes from the deep to its brothers the clouds, full of dreams of dank pastures and caves of leviathan.
-"The Strange High House in the Mist" by HPL

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by fox01313 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 1:07 am

Just now getting to the episode now that most of the move is done, still unpacking. Have to agree with Alan Wake being good especially with a controller playing on the PC (also the tv shows you find are like a weird Twilight Zone feel to it in 5 minute clips).

Also want to throw out the Xbox 360 Downloaded game sequel to Alan Wake that's now on PC too (both are fun but the combat will get a bit tedious after a while).

Steam link below & first thing on the page before the screenshots is usually some kind of trailer
Alan Wake
http://store.steampowered.com/app/10871 ... 1_5_9__205

Alan Wake American Nightmare
http://store.steampowered.com/app/202750/

Amnesia: The Dark Descent
http://store.steampowered.com/app/57300/

Still would highly recommend Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth as it is fun plus not too expensive on steam
http://store.steampowered.com/app/22340/

Dead Space2 I feel is better than #1 & #3 as the space station gives it a more creepy feel than the rest plus the mechanics are a bit better than the first, not as scary as you play but it does a great job with combat & zero-gravity.
http://store.steampowered.com/app/47780/

Oh and as for Phantasmagoria, it & 7th Guest aren't on steam yet but they are on a similar site called Good Old Games
https://secure.gog.com/game/the_7th_guest
http://www.gog.com/game/phantasmagoria


**

Agreed about not a ton of gaming cons in Texas at least where I'm at in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area. Found a few on Meetup but not sure how well they work out as just finding out on them in the last few months. (few I know about coming soon are listed below)
http://www.meetup.com/NTRPGCon/
http://www.texicon.net/

Do want to recommend Gen-X in the Euless area & Madness Comics in Plano/Richardson for people in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area looking for comic stores with a decent Cthulhu gaming materials.

Also anyone on the MUP boards looking for people in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area, send me a message here or on YSDC & we can see about getting some kind of game going even if it's just online.
http://www.yog-sothoth.com/user/5250-fox01313/
"That's funny, usually the blood gets off on the second floor." -Mr. Burns in The Shinning episode (Treehouse of horror V)

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by fox01313 » Mon Feb 24, 2014 11:29 pm

Wanted to put up something in concerns to how to do any kind of sandboxing with the CoC/Trail/etc. games out there as too much sandboxing will pretty much ruin the mystery but you should be able to go cover the basics. Apart from doing things like what was mentioned about having the players not only talk briefly about how their characters know each other but also if they are part of any investigative organization but thinking back to the Buffy the Vampire Slayer & X-files tv series gave me the idea for the rest. Haven't tested it yet to see how it works but feel free to try out the ideas listed below (and let me know if it works or not :wink: ).

Simple investigative sandboxing ideas:
  • *have the players/gm fill in the small town they live in with some noticeable local npcs and/or shops, attractions (the keeper can add secrets but this will be a good start on surface level details)

    *ask the players the following: do you want a scenario with a lot of traveling like a vacation, a professional expedition, relocating somewhere else in the world, or just stay locally?

    *if traveling, ask where in a general sense, like the west coast/Caribbean isles/Europe (preferably where a 'Secrets of X' sourcebook is out for that area)? ...you can always take some generic scenarios & alter them to fit

    *how about the fun one, of time periods to cover? (there's one Role Playing Public Radio game in the actual play section where the players start off in grade school then it skips forward about 10 years for each act) Strange Aeons 2 has stuff going all over the place in time periods, just need to pick something if they want something different

    *lastly go with what was mentioned in the podcast & quite important, which is to find any sensitive buttons of the players to avoid or tread lightly on (some might be able to handle brief mention of something to gloss over & others might not want it mentioned at all)
Good luck on these & hope they help (as well as work) for those like me new to sandboxing scenarios.
"That's funny, usually the blood gets off on the second floor." -Mr. Burns in The Shinning episode (Treehouse of horror V)

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Dr. Gerard » Tue Feb 25, 2014 3:54 am

These all look great to me, Fox01313. Adapting scenarios to a new setting is intriguing, though I'm sure it would also be a challenge. It would be interesting to write a scenario with such adaptability built in from the outset, no? You could write generic places and resources that intentionally allow Keepers to plug in their own home towns and input from players.

Like Mad Libs for Keepers.

Oh, and by the way, thanks for the voicemail! Great to hear the voices of forum folks we've come to know over time.
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by KeeperMurph » Thu Feb 27, 2014 5:35 pm

I totally agree with R.J. about Dan being awesome.

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Dr. Gerard » Thu Feb 27, 2014 6:44 pm

KeeperMurph wrote:I totally agree with R.J. about Dan being awesome.
I agree with Murph, but not with R.J.

Irrespective, Dan is awesome.
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by fox01313 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 1:18 am

Dr. Gerard wrote:These all look great to me, Fox01313. Adapting scenarios to a new setting is intriguing, though I'm sure it would also be a challenge. It would be interesting to write a scenario with such adaptability built in from the outset, no? You could write generic places and resources that intentionally allow Keepers to plug in their own home towns and input from players.

Like Mad Libs for Keepers.

Oh, and by the way, thanks for the voicemail! Great to hear the voices of forum folks we've come to know over time.
Well I was remembering from the New Orleans Mythos episode where between that & some of the stuff Keeper Murph was talking about putting games in the Houston area. While it won't work with some scenarios that are geographically more locked to a certain area but there's plenty out there that can probably be moved some though agreed it might take some work to revise some spots in order to make things fit in that location. Others geographically just might need to be moved somewhat so if you have something on the coast & the game is set more inland then you just have to do a little more work to save it for when the group goes on a coastal vacation(kidnapped) or set it off one of the larger lakes.
"That's funny, usually the blood gets off on the second floor." -Mr. Burns in The Shinning episode (Treehouse of horror V)

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Cthuhugh » Thu Mar 13, 2014 11:27 am

I found this article on Gnome Stew: http://tinyurl.com/l4lufr6
Kingdom- "Several elements set Kingdom apart: you build a collaborative setting, featuring a high level of player input and control, with very influential characters, who navigate kingdom-wide crises."

Interesting to see an rpg with collaboration as a central theme and tons of advice to a group that may not have done any sand boxing in the past.
Steve Highfield in the Call of Cthulhu "No Man's Land" scenario. Fenton Beanland in the Call of Cthulhu "The Inheritor " scenario.

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Dr. Gerard » Thu Mar 13, 2014 11:42 am

That looks great, Hugh. I can't remember if we mentioned it on the show or not, but the Microscope system also does a good job with group world creation.

http://www.lamemage.com/microscope/

Burning Wheel has a whole mechanic for world creation. I've played a game of Burning Empires (BW's sci-fi iteration), and a few sessions were all about world building, brainstorming everything from climate to political factions. Then, the characters arise from that. It's good fun, though BW is a little too crunchy for my taste.

In fact, there are tons of new games that make group world building an essential part of campaign setup.
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Cthuhugh » Thu Mar 13, 2014 12:39 pm

Dr. Gerard wrote:
In fact, there are tons of new games that make group world building an essential part of campaign setup.
Wow,this is a type of rpg I've had no exposure to in the past,I will be checking it out.Apropos of nothing Chad I've just finished reading the thread Scriv baby posted "Am I too squeamish for Call of Cthulhu?" http://mu-podcast.com/campus/viewtopic.php?f=30&t=603 ..what great stuff! Kept me up past my bedtime..... :oops:
Steve Highfield in the Call of Cthulhu "No Man's Land" scenario. Fenton Beanland in the Call of Cthulhu "The Inheritor " scenario.

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