19 thoughts on “Do you use Apocalypse World style “love letters” in your Dungeon World game at all? And how do you use them?”

  1. I’ve used them occasionally to bridge narrative gaps between sessions where there’s a forward jump in game time.

    I have noticed, though, that it can be really difficult to keep players from wanting to go back and “just do a few scenes to see what happened” during these jumps, which in some ways defeats what I see as the main purpose of love letters.

  2. Lukas Myhan is right, though. Everybody kind of has to be on the same page in terms of “we’re exploring this content through these letters, rather than playing out the stuff that they describe.” It works better at the beginning of a campaign, I think, or to skip stuff that nobody’s really interested in.

  3. I recently played a quest session in an AW game that had a shifting cast of players (and characters) where they used love letters for every session (except any given character’s first session). It was actually kind of rocking, if everyone is on board for it.

  4. I’m sorry, could you address me to where the Love Letters are originally described? Also, I’m guessing that they’d be used once all the fronts are resolved…? Otherwise, wouldn’t most Grim Portents come to pass if the PC do mostly nothing for weeks? Just asking.

  5. From DW:

    If you’re running a short game, maybe at a convention or game day, you may find that you want to front-load the experience a little more. Here’s a move that covers “the adventure so far” so that you can get straight into a short game in media res.

    Stalwart Fighter: As if the bandits weren’t bad enough! As if all the sword wounds, bruises and beatings at the hands of your enemies were insufficient—now this. Trapped underground with your adventuring companions when all you wanted was to return to the town and spend your well-earned bounty. No such luck, warrior. Sharpen that sword! Certainly, the others will need your protecting before safety is found. Just like last time. Once more into the breach, right? I swear, one of these fellows must owe you a favor or two by now…

    Have a look around and roll+CHA. ✴On a 10+, choose two party members. ✴On a 7–9, choose just one. ✴On a 6-, you’re surrounded by ingrates.

    At a moment of need, you can cash in a favor owed you by one of the party members chosen. They must change their action to one of your choosing, once. You may not give them an action that would involve them directly taking damage, giving up a magic item they already own or coming to immediate harm. Use it to make them agree with you, or give you that extra ration you want, or giving you their slot in the loot lottery. Leverage is sweet.

    The most important part of this move is not the roll or the effect, but the information and tone. It sets the stage for a quick adventure and gives the player reading it a starting point to work with. The roll and result here are interesting, but don’t greatly change the flow of the game. Handing out a set of these, one to each player, along with a playbook, is a great way to run a con game.

  6. Even Apocalypse World doesn’t actually call them love letters anywhere in the main rule book. They’re just example moves under the Catching Up, Setting Up heading in the Advanced Fuckery chapter. In the “Hachet City” con scenario they’re referred to as “Dear __ Letters”. Love letters was adopted as a name for the technique after the fact; I have no idea who actually coined it first.

  7. Damn, this feed pays dividends again!  This is bad ass, I think I might try and churn some of these for saturday.  I also like how they are fait accompli, instead of the player whining about how “they would never do that”, and yet have enough choice to soften the blow.

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