I’m adapting an adventure with a door knob slathered in contact poison.

I’m adapting an adventure with a door knob slathered in contact poison.

I’m adapting an adventure with a door knob slathered in contact poison. From the context the knob looks fishy (it’s shaped like the head of a raven and it’s in good shape, while the door it belongs too is corroded).

Should I make a custom move? Or if you touch the knob, you simply get poisoned?

If it’s a move: roll+CON, on 10+ nothing happens, 7-9 a debility, 6- a debility and damage? I’m not pleased, but I don’t see how to give a choice that makes sense in the fiction. “You have been poisoned. Do you want it to affect your nervous system or your blood?” doesn’t sound plausible.

7 thoughts on “I’m adapting an adventure with a door knob slathered in contact poison.”

  1. This might not be helpful, but just to be clear: “When you touch the door knob with your bare hands, you suffer the effects of Hydra Venom,” is totally a move.

    Also, the choice (if there is one) is being made by the player not the character, right?

  2. Thank you both for the answer, touch the knob and suffer the poison it is. If I had an interesting positive outcome, a roll would fit too.

    I like to think that the choices follow from the fiction, just as the moves do. Players choosing in lieu of their character sounds like… disassociated mechanics? 😛

    Game theory aside, I think it’s a matter of preference. I prefer character’s decisions, even if the players sometimes metagame a bit, over player’s decisions.

  3. Dylan nailed it.  I’d allow a Thief or someone who described their action carefully a chance to Defy Danger.  Does the message from your brain get to your hand before the poison has a chance to set in?

    “You put your hand on the doorknob and as you turn, you feel a funny itch in your palm.”

    And if they’re like “OH FUCK I YANK MY HAND AWAY” then great, Defy that shit.  If not, well, welcome to poisoned.

  4. André Rodrigues Actually, I really like that choices are aimed at the players in moves. It’s one of the ways the system asks the players how they want the story to turn out.

    If everything would be aimed at the characters, then the disassociation would just fall between the player and his character.

  5. Kasper Brohus I understand your point, but it’s not quite what I look for in DW.

    I’m okay with players defining the world with their answers, their ideas and their behavior, but when they are in the middle of action trying to make a decision, I want them to think as the character. For me that’s a big part of what roleplaying is about: playing the role of a fictional character. Not the only part, but a big one.

    But I agree that DW can be played in that way, a little bit more story-gaming style, and I think that’s great. It really shows how versatile this game really is.

  6. Ara Kooser Thanks for the link. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to read it before the game.

    After reading I went “duh, I should write proper Custom Moves for the traps, of course”.

    The Fighter just opened the door and got poisoned, since it was smeared on the knob. He ignored both my description and a “failed” Spout Lore by the cleric that revealed the crow head shaped knob was a bad omen.

    That made me think if it’s a good idea to give true information when a Spout Lore roll results in a miss. Or maybe I should just warn the players to not assume that the information is wrong.

  7. Great link! It sums up how I feel, if I could put it in such clear words.

    In a way, that’s how I think traditional RPGs do it: the character’s past is where the player has authorship.

    * World games “just” seem to  encourage you to get really close to the line, which is a lot of fun.

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