In 'Who The Devil Are You?' The Players Do All The Work!

Zero-prep game where the players make the world and the story.

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Monte Cook Games' latest roleplaying game is a player-led experience called Who The Devil Are You? Instead of the GM building the world, the players do during the character creation process.

Even the story is player-led. The players create a scene based on an image prompt, and the GM just needs to fill in the details.

The game comes as a 50-page PDF, and it's a lightweight toolset which leans heavily on improvisation. Designed as a 'zero prep' game, it's best used for one-shots.

In most RPGs, the GM provides the story, setting, and context to the players and the players create characters to fit that world. But what if we turned all that upside down?

What if the whole process of making the characters also builds the world? And breathing life into those characters also builds the story? In other words, what if the lazy-ass GM makes the players do all the work?

This fun, fast-paced narrative game removes all the prep-work and delivers an entertaining, creative roleplaying experience that engages everyone around the table and invariably results in an entertaining, memorable story you’ll recount again and again, and a great time for everyone.

You start with an image prompt that sets a scene. Any prompt—science fiction, fantasy, horror, modern, or even weird or comical; it all works. The players collaborate to decide what the scene depicts: what’s happening, who’s there, and why. Then they build characters ready to engage the situation they created, while GM takes what they’ve come up with and sketches out the conflict, some basic plot points, and maybe a few details.

Then it’s into the action! The game provides the structure that turns these fun, fast-flowing, creative ideas into a coherent story with action, twists, turns, and always an element of the unexpected.


 

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BookTenTiger

He / Him
This is totally my jam. I love being a facilitator of story and having the players do a lot of creative work. The idea of starting with a picture is really intriguing, as well as having players make characters ready to face that particular situation.
 


pemerton

Legend
Interesting, has MC seen the light? Is a PbtA next? Hehe, no probably not, but this could be an interesting read.
In A Wicked Age uses Oracles (lists, randomised by playing card draw) to generate setting elements, characters (both PC and NPC) that are among those elements, and incipient situations. From the description above, it sounds like this game uses a similar method, only images rather than words.
 

In A Wicked Age uses Oracles (lists, randomised by playing card draw) to generate setting elements, characters (both PC and NPC) that are among those elements, and incipient situations. From the description above, it sounds like this game uses a similar method, only images rather than words.
Yeah, IWA is not a game I know much about. In any case, its not like these are NEW ideas, its more who's espousing them, and in what mix. I'm curious at least.
 

Vincent55

Adventurer
no, i like doing the work and making and designing things and running the game like a DM is meant to do, i have seen DMs that just wing the whole game with no plan and i find those games of zero interest. But why stop there and just sit around and tell stories and interact that way heck why even have a rule book at all? I know i will just say i am a 20th-level wizard with a dragon or better i an a god that likes playing with mortals so really I can't ever die i just pretend.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
no, i like doing the work and making and designing things and running the game like a DM is meant to do, i have seen DMs that just wing the whole game with no plan and i find those games of zero interest. But why stop there and just sit around and tell stories and interact that way heck why even have a rule book at all? I know i will just say i am a 20th-level wizard with a dragon or better i an a god that likes playing with mortals so really I can't ever die i just pretend.
#badwrongfun, right?
 

GMMichael

Guide of Modos
. . . Instead of the GM building the world, the players do during the character creation process.

Even the story is player-led. The players create a scene based on an image prompt, and the GM just needs to fill in the details.
It's about time we got those layabouts to do some honest work!

I was hoping for some insight into who the purple devotees are, or what the devil the devil has to do with the game. I mean, we could stretch and say "the devil" is in the details, and the GM provides the details...

Designed as a 'zero prep' game, it's best used for one-shots.
Is this assertion from MCG? I ask because a "story with action, twists, turns" sounds like campaign material.
 

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