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TOPIC: Travel Montage

Travel Mon­tage 2 years 7 months ago #3837

  • Allan
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Any­one famil­iar with the Travel Mon­tage sys­tem from 13th Age?
With the right group it could work really well.
Allan
Mourn for us oppressed in fear
Chained and shack­led we are bound
Free­dom choked in dread we live
Since Tyrant was enthroned
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Travel Mon­tage 2 years 7 months ago #3838

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I wasn’t aware of this sys­tem but thanks for bring­ing it up! I’ve read a few things now and seems remark­ably easy to imple­ment and fits really well with the player dri­ven nature of blade — or any type of game as far my tastes goes.

I’m actu­ally strug­gling with over­land travel in my games as it some­times feel like a chore or, at least to me, feels like i’m waf­flin. As a flick buff i’ve nat­u­rally moved to jump­cuts of frag­ments of scenes backed by an adven­tur­ous song, but that’s just through my nar­ra­tive. Seems like some­thing i’d come up in a cou­ple of years, but I know it now! heh

Have a link some­where with extra expla­na­tions or resources? Or is just the sim­ple ask­ing your play­ers about the obsta­cles and so on?
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Travel Mon­tage 2 years 7 months ago #3839

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For wilder­ness travel I find some of the books from Table­top Adven­tures presents; Bits of Wilder­ness, Into the Open/​Forest/​Mountains really help­ful.

Mon­tage;

Start with a player who is com­fort­able impro­vis­ing and ask
them to describe a prob­lem that the party faces as they travel
or under­take an activ­ity, with­out offer­ing a solu­tion. Then turn
to the player to the left of the start­ing player and ask them how
their PC does some­thing clever or awe­some to solve the prob­lem.
After they nar­rate a solu­tion, ask that same player to describe
the next obsta­cle that the group must deal with. The next player
clock­wise gets to solve the new prob­lem, then offer up a new
obsta­cle, and so on around the table until every­one has invented
and solved a prob­lem.

At the end of each prob­lem and solu­tion phase, the Ref should nar­rate what has hap­pened.

Allan
Mourn for us oppressed in fear
Chained and shack­led we are bound
Free­dom choked in dread we live
Since Tyrant was enthroned
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Travel Mon­tage 2 years 7 months ago #3840

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It feels very lonely here, has every­one gone on holidays?
Mourn for us oppressed in fear
Chained and shack­led we are bound
Free­dom choked in dread we live
Since Tyrant was enthroned
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Travel Mon­tage 2 years 7 months ago #3841

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Seems so. Tho I’m yet to take some highly deserved beach hol­i­days, just in a cou­ple more weeks!

Say, have you been able to test the mon­tages with your group? How did it go?
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Travel Mon­tage 2 years 7 months ago #3843

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tested and a fail for my group.
My one long term player is tricky with that sort of thing, you would have to go back to some of my early posts as I tried with Michael to work on him. He is not the improv. type player.
My other player is only 2 games in and a newby also.
Check out those books I rec­om­mended they work well.
Also just got another one called Tome of Adven­ture Design, with some inter­est­ing gear but a bit D&D ish.
Allan
Mourn for us oppressed in fear
Chained and shack­led we are bound
Free­dom choked in dread we live
Since Tyrant was enthroned
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Travel Mon­tage 2 years 6 months ago #3847

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Allan wrote:
Any­one famil­iar with the Travel Mon­tage sys­tem from 13th Age?

Nope, but that doesn’t stop me from com­ment­ing, see below. :P

Anarak wrote:
I’m actu­ally strug­gling with over­land travel in my games as it some­times feel like a chore or, at least to me, feels like i’m waf­flin. As a flick buff i’ve nat­u­rally moved to jump­cuts of frag­ments of scenes backed by an adven­tur­ous song, but that’s just through my narrative.

Jump­cut­ting to frag­ments is in the Blade mind­set. Like we state in the book, we don’t care for travel down­time. Your Ara­bian Nights rogues are trav­el­ling from Bagh­dad to Cairo? Fine, bang, they’re there — if the jour­ney itself isn’t the story. And if it is the story will be clear from ask­ing your­self whether events on the quite pos­si­bly dan­ger­ous trip would merely delay the res­o­lu­tion of the story, like a ran­dom encounter, or if the trip is actu­ally part of the story arc. Tolkien glances over the com­pan­ions’ — quite pos­si­bly not at all leisurely — trip from Riven­dell to Caradhras, but he devotes many pages to the much, much shorter jour­ney of Frodo and Sam from the Falls of Rau­ros to the Black Gate. Let’s take a clue from him (and all writ­ers) and just glance over travel time that would be no more than an episode.

If some­body is very uncom­fort­able with that insert a cut scene, like 13th Age seems to sug­gest. A very brief encounter, designed to be dealt with in no more than 20 min­utes of game time and address­ing one PA of one PC would fit the bill. On the way from Bagh­dad to Cairo cut right to a sand­storm in the desert, or to some fel­low trav­eller try­ing to steal some­thing from a PC, or to an encounter with beduins that might turn into hos­til­i­ties if han­dled poorly, etc. Espe­cially with trips that take my play­ers from one cul­tural or cli­matic region to another I like to use this tech­nique myself, as it imparts some impres­sion of the sur­round­ings chang­ing.

For a really long trip you can either string up a suc­ces­sion of such small scenes along the way, or actu­ally insert a half-​way adven­ture tak­ing up an entire ses­sion along the way. With the PA-​guided play-​style of Blade I am how­ever wary of such adven­tures and pre­fer a string of cut-​scenes, as such an adven­ture needs to be very care­fully tai­lored to not actu­ally detract from and merely delay the group’s inter­est but instead have mean­ing in regards to their PAs, some­thing that I have found fre­quently to be beyond my capa­bil­i­ties.

But, return­ing to 13th Age: I quite like the tech­nique, but even among my crowd I would not trust of all of them to be able to han­dle it cor­rectly — even more so as with Blade, the player mak­ing up a probem for another to solve should absolutely be required to address one of this player’s PAs with that prob­lem. And, the way Blade treats travel, I would say that for most trips one such prob­lem should be enough, not a string of them.
Bow down: I am the emperor of dreams;
I crown me with the million-​colored sun
Of secret worlds incred­i­ble, and take
Their trail­ing skies for vest­ment when I soar.

Clark Ash­ton Smith, The Hashish Eater or The Apoc­a­lypse of Evil
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