Advice for new "story now" GMs

clearstream

(He, Him)
Here it seems to be the GM, rather than the player, who is setting stakes. As I understand the events, it is the GM who decided that the assassin was present at the wedding, and the GM who decided the cake was full of gunpowder, and the GM who decided that the stakes for failing "detect danger" checks was explosion.
Can you say more about how you see this as GM setting stakes, over GM controlling adversaries with a soft leading to eventually a hard move? Would that be due to

The adventure kicked off with a member of the city guard advising the character’s father that they had raided the office of a criminal broker, where they had discovered that “someone” had paid an assassin a large sum of money to assassinate someone at the wedding.
going beyond setting a situation in some way? Or other factors?
 
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pemerton

Legend
Can you say more about how you see this as GM setting stakes, over GM controlling adversaries with eventually a hard move? Would that be due to


going beyond setting a situation in some way?
As I read the example, the whole marriage => assassination idea came from the GM; and the whole if we fail our detect danger checks, my family blow up thing came from the GM.
 

clearstream

(He, Him)
As I read the example, the whole marriage => assassination idea came from the GM; and the whole if we fail our detect danger checks, my family blow up thing came from the GM.
I read it that way, too, albeit with the possible framing of

setting [decided by player]
situation [decided by GM]
trapped cake [GM soft move]
explodes [GM hard move]

I think you see that differently, right? Is it possible to say more about the how and why?

(I don't think that the above sequence is necessarily yielding story now. And the reasons why might underpin your answer.)
 


loverdrive

Prophet of the profane (She/Her)
Roll to prevent my railroad is in no way analogous to the PbtA moves structure.
I think you are missing the forest for a tree.

A described scenario could happen in a SN game. PC interrogates an assassin, fails, and the MC shows signs of the approaching threat: turns out, the assassin isn't alone! They look for his accomplice, fail, and the MC reveals an unwelcome truth: the cake is a lie bomb! Kaboom!

It flies in the face of the narrative the player has intended, yeah, and that is in no way contrary to Story Now. If anything, being surprised, thrilled and upset at an unexpected development is half the point.
 

pemerton

Legend
trapped cake [GM soft move]
Where did this soft move take place? Or to put it another way, where did the GM narrate signs of impending badness.

Also, does "look through crosshairs" apply to the PC's family, in circumstances where they did not choose to put them at stake. (In the example of play in the AW rulebook, before Plover goes and gets killed by Marie, the GM presents Keeler's player with an opportunity to impose her will on her gang.)
 

I think you are missing the forest for a tree.

A described scenario could happen in a SN game. PC interrogates an assassin, fails, and the MC shows signs of the approaching threat: turns out, the assassin isn't alone! They look for his accomplice, fail, and the MC reveals an unwelcome truth: the cake is a lie bomb! Kaboom!

It flies in the face of the narrative the player has intended, yeah, and that is in no way contrary to Story Now. If anything, being surprised, thrilled and upset at an unexpected development is half the point.
I've played AW for a dozen years. The scenario presented fails to describe Story Now play in any way. Its a classic railroad.

The fact that events can be retrofitted to a Story Now system is the kind of bad analysis that illusionists use to present games as the same.

I repeat - being 'hired' to discover the GMs railroaded 'plot' is not Story Now play. It's Story Now kryptonite.
 
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loverdrive

Prophet of the profane (She/Her)
I've played AW for a dozen years. The scenario presented fails to describe Story Now play in any way. Its a classic railroad.

The fact that events can be retrofitted to a Story Now system is the kind of bad anysis that illusionists use to present games as the same.

I repeat - being 'hired' to discover the GMs railroaded 'plot' is not Story Now play. It's Story Now kryptonite.
I think you are overthinking this. I'm not @FrozenNorth, but I don't think it was intended as a one-to-one description of SN. What moves were or were not made (none, as 5E isn't a PbtA game) is immaterial.

It's context for a question: "What if something that the player doesn't want to happen happens and now they are upset?". And it is a good question! This can happen in a Story Now game! My answer is, of course, either "cry about it" or "cope and seethe". I'm not entirely sure what safety tools have to do with it, but still.

I think it's silly to expect people who aren't already intimately familiar with SN (and thus actually need advice) to use correct transcripts from SN games to frame their questions.
 

@FrozenNorth

"Creating family as a counterpoint" is not exactly in the spirit of Story Now play. Play to find out what happens, all that, and it's generally not exactly a smart idea to have plans.
“Creating the family as a counterpoint” was the player’s term, though from their reaction, I think it was clearly something more to them.

As of safety tools, it's kind of murky. There's a difference between "I had another idea in mind and now upset that it didn't work out" and "this #### triggers me". Both could be the case, and in the case of the later, the well-being of a real person in a real world obviously has a priority over the game.
👍
 

I think you are overthinking this. I'm not @FrozenNorth, but I don't think it was intended as a one-to-one description of SN. What moves were or were not made (none, as 5E isn't a PbtA game) is immaterial.
Exactly this! The game was explicitly not a Story Now game, it was a 5e game. It was used as an example to illustrate my question.

“Given that drama in a Story Now game is generated by putting in peril things that matter to the characters (and the players), how do you identify when putting something in peril goes beyond what the player is comfortable with?”

It's context for a question: "What if something that the player doesn't want to happen happens and now they are upset?". And it is a good question! This can happen in a Story Now game! My answer is, of course, either "cry about it" or "cope and seethe". I'm not entirely sure what safety tools have to do with it, but still.
Perhaps bringing in safety tools muddled the situation rather than clarified it.
 

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