I played Monster of the Week last weekend.

I played Monster of the Week last weekend.

I played Monster of the Week last weekend. It has a “Manipulate Someone” move similar to DW’s Parley move. However, in addition to the rules for NPCs, it has rules for manipulating PCs:

For another hunter:

• On a 10+ they mark experience and get +1 forward if they do

what you ask.

• On a 7-9, they mark experience if they do what you ask.

• On  a  miss,  it’s  up  to  that hunter  to  decide  how  badly  you

offend or annoy them. They mark experience if they do not do

what you asked.

I found this rule to be a lot of fun, and wondered a) why isn’t it in DW? is it because there’s already a lot of XP given out for misses? or because this takes the focus away from smashing the doors and storming the dungeon? and b) could this be incorporated?

47 thoughts on “I played Monster of the Week last weekend.”

  1. It could be in DW. In fact, it was for a long time. We dropped it because DW isn’t so much about PC-vs-PC stuff. It felt like a rule that then pointed people at PvP, which is great in AW where the players can all be at each others throats, and less good for DW.

  2. My 2 Cents: I haven’t played Monster of the Week, but I would not allow this in DW simply for the fact that it dictates interaction between players when I would rather have that occur through pure roleplaying.

    Mechanically, I do not like the XP bonus. With only 10 levels, I already feel like DW characters have plenty of options to advance rather quickly.

  3. It is dictating interactions not behavior. It is saying the interactions between characters rely on a roll and have the rewards of XP and possibly bonuses to act.  Failure is still a boon for a character that does not act, the downside is fictional while all upsides are mechanical.  

    To me, it just doesn’t seem fitting for Dungeon World, a game of cooperative adventuring for the most part.

  4. Sorry, I’m not seeing it. It adds the usual uncertainty to play that every other move does, by rewarding — on a failure — doing something different; at the same time it reinforces banding together by giving bonuses for cooperation.

    Now, it is obviously an artifact of the Monster Hunter genre (where everyone thinks they alone are correct in how to proceed, and someone goes off alone to prove it), but it could easily work if someone wanted that kind of individual agenda-setting in their DW game.

  5. Sure if you want it in your game use it. I would not allow it for the reasons I stated.

    On a failure the party is rewarded, on a success the party is rewarded. The GM is out of the equation. Unless I’m mistaken, which I am new to DW so possible, on a failure two PC’s can gain XP. I’m not liking that. 

  6. Maybe an alternate move in DW could be implemented. Fictionally, what did you like about the move, just the ability to manipulate another character?

  7. Actually, I only got manipulated. I was an erratic magic user working with a secret agent/x-files type, and he was leery of my magic use, since it often got us into trouble. A couple of times he attempted to convince me not to do what I was about to do, and succeeded on the rolls. That gave me the hard choice of either doing the thing I wanted to do or not doing it and getting XP. Basically, it was a hard choice, like in DW.

  8. Besides it being fun, why do you like the move? Is it the function of having sway over another PC’s actions? 

    It could be altered pretty easily to fit better into DW without giving out XP, replacing it with something to preserve what you like about the move.

  9. Yes. It gives me the option to make other people do what I want them to. If I have a hot/charismatic character but all the players can just ignore what I say that is not fun.

  10. IMO, it’s not a hard choice. It seems like everything is good for the PC’s with the downside of being “insulting a PC”, which is fluff and can be toss aside, although it definitely is not meant to be. Coming purely from the viewpoint of DW, this mechanically appears as an XP farm.  

    Tim Franzke This doesn’t make people do what you want, though, just provides incentive.

    Also, you described the issue with all mental stats, which is a pain. High Int doesn’t mean players will listen to your plans. Cha does seem to have the short end of the stick, though, when it comes to convincing other players of anything. Int and Wis can gather more evidence.

    I understand the need for a way to influence other PC’s I just don’t think this particular move fits into DW as is. Again, that is my opinion. It should be more like Parlay. 

  11. Wait, I just told you it was literally a hard choice for me to make when faced with manipulation by a fellow PC. Either a) doing what I wanted to do or b) getting XP.

  12. By “hard” I thought you meant that it had consequences not that it was difficult. Like a “hard move”, dealing damage and the like.

    Either choice doesn’t really drain any resources from either character but gives resources despite the outcome. IMO, it’s not a difficult choice if it was in DW.

    Maybe it has a different weight in MotW, I dunno.

  13. Elliott Doza , I don’t get your point. I’m saying it was actually a difficult decision, whether to do the thing I wanted to do or take the XP. In that I was playing the game, and the decision was tough for me to make. Saying “it’s not a difficult decision” doesn’t really change my mind about my actual experience of play.

  14. I’m not trying to change your mind. You asked if it could be imported into DW and I pointed out some issues I saw and provided my opinion. I provided some basic analysis of the issues I saw in the move.

    The discussion is about how it fits in DW.

    I said if you want to use it in your game then it’s up to you.

    It seemed that most thought the double XP was a bit much. I asked what you liked and suggested it could be modified for DW. 

    I said in my opinion, the move itself is not a difficult choice. Taking it out of the narrative, standing by itself as a move that is my opinion.

    I never said or meant to insinuate  your experience with choosing wasn’t difficult. 

    Many of the posts are attacking my opinions, which I laid out multiple times. This thread is about opinions.  In the end, they are my opinions and you are free to have your own.

    Personally, I do not think nor would let the move into my DW game. Too much benefit, little cost.

    Tim Franzke  Is Monster of the Week an AW hack?

  15. I didn’t mean to poop on anyone’s love of the move. 

    I’m guessing since it’s an AW hack the move functions differently in that game-space then it would in DW as well. 

  16. Wait, I’m confused about the double XP thing. You mean that two characters can gain XP from the same roll? Why not just use the normal AW seduce/manipulate move?

    For PCs: on a 10+, both. On a 7–9, choose 1:

    • if they do it, they mark experience

    • if they refuse, it’s acting under fire

    What they do then is up to them.

  17. I don’t think I would want to deal with this in DW games. There’s a decided PvP feeling that DW manages to avoid most of the time… and I’d be very afraid this would bring it out in unpleasant ways. There are also less assertive players in our group who might be very frustrated by this kind of mechanic. (Or maybe they’d embrace it and use it on others… seems unlikely based on their past behavior, but who knows.)

    That said, I think it’d mechanically work and psychologically it’d be intriguing. If you want an incubus or all-around bad-idea-bear in your party I’m betting this is the direction you want to go in.

  18. What is the significance of XP in Monster of the Week? I’ve not read it, but I suspect it means something very different from in Dungeon World, so handing it out this way may not be a big deal. If you were to import it to Dungeon World, I would certainly look to changing this, although I have no idea how.

    I would be wary of using such a rule in a random game, but I like some of the things it might improve:

    – When two PCs have strong but opposing opinions, you can end up with useless back and forths of “But I must and nothing can change my mind!” “But I can’t let you and nothing can change my mind!”  Certainly not something that goes on too long in fiction because it’s boring.  This provide a nudge to break out such un-fun loops.

    – If your game measures charisma, persuasiveness, or similar, it respects that in PC vs PC contexts.  To many games can have the silver tongued bard who persuades every NPC, but can’t get the paladin to yield even a small point.

    – For some genres, it can simulate characters who can be swayed into bad ideas.  The Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser stories come to mind.  So do Vance’s Dying Earth stories; tellingly the Dying Earth RPG has a dedicated mechanic for convincing characters to try bad ideas.

    I don’t think I’ll be adopting something like that for my Dungeon World campaign, but I’ll be considering it for other games.

  19. You have 2 highlighted stats. When you roll a move with a stat that is highlighted you get 1 XP. 5 XP and you get a “level up”. On a level up you can pick one advance from a list. Like taking extra moves from your playbook or another playbook. 

    Getting +1 to a stat or getting things like a medical station. 

    So XP is even more tastier in MotW (or Monsterhearts or Apocalypse World)

  20. I’m very interested in where this idea of scarcity of XP comes from. Admittedly I’m more of a fan of AW than DW, so I’m used to the “go ahead” advice for XP. Is it actually something intended, Adam Koebel and Sage LaTorra ? Or just something imported from Dungeons and Dragons?

  21. Scarcity of XP in DW? Really? I haven’t seen that (hough admittedly I haven’t been following this thread). Cold you sum up what you’re thinking of?

  22. Ha! “Balance” in Dungeon World. That’s hilarious.

    I tend to think XP is roughly equal between the games.

    We didn’t write many gain XP moves because we found them relatively boring. The few we had tended to not lead the fiction much of anywhere, and just add pointless character action. Which is lame. When we did have a version of Parley that worked on PCs we did have it offer XP at one point I think.

  23. I don’t know about other groups, but the games I’ve played in, we get “failure” XP a lot… I mean a whole lot. We’re usually limited in our leveling in when we can rest rather than when we have enough XP. I think there’s a little bit of a “keeping the pack together” effect in that people at higher levels tend not to make it to the next level as often when we get to a place where we can rest. 

  24. However, Elliott Doza the original A.W. move was slightly different (I like it more than MotW version):

    … … For PCs: on a 10+, both. On a 7–9, choose 1:

    • if they do it, they mark experience

    • if they refuse, it’s acting under fire

    What they do then is up to them.

    As you see, there is no “on a failure”, so GM can still make a move here. Finally, there are no guaranteed XPs. Really a nice “I’m giving my advice here” and “you see, things are going bad ’cause you aren’t following my advice”.

    Love to Vincent.

  25. I like the AW version better as well. What does the term “it’s acting under fire” mean?

    Is this move supposed to be used in times of stress?

  26. Acting under fire is basically the same move as Defy Danger but it works only with 1 stat. 

    This move is used every time you manipulate or seduce someone, regardles of timing. 

    When used against an NPC it works basically like Parley. (or Parley works like this move)

  27. Yes, you can roll to give them -2 on their roll, but that’s not intended to be something that offers direction to the player (you can use it that way in practice but the fiction isn’t linked to telling them what to do, so I’ve never seen a player do that). When the mechanic is directly linked to telling a character how to behave I expect it to make certain types of players very upset and unhappy. There’s a fine line between being manipulated and feeling as if others won’t let you roleplay your own character.

    I’ve already seen serious problems in tabletop games where players who are shyer or less able to assert themselves socially struggle to own their character’s autonomy and get very angry when other players try to “puppet” them. 

  28. Well AW is also a game where I can mess up your garage with my grenade launcher or visit you my 15 buddies to mess you up. I can read your mind or ban you from the city. I can make your gang fight against you by preaching truth to them or make your head explode by looking at you. I can hit you over with my car or shoot you with my sniper rifle or hypnotise you with striping. It’s a game that can be very pvp. Manipulating people is one of the nicer things you can do. It also gives more quiet players the chance to play charismatic characters by giving them the mechanical power to use their characters hotness. It’s a good thing really.

  29. That sounds reasonable and appropriate for AW… but wasn’t the general subject of this discussion how these mechanics might work in DW? If I missed a tangent and the conversation has totally moved on from DW I apologize. confused

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