Shameless plug for Numenera, the new story-driven game from Monte Cook.

Shameless plug for Numenera, the new story-driven game from Monte Cook.

Shameless plug for Numenera, the new story-driven game from Monte Cook. All of the skills the Dungeon World taught me transfer perfectly to Numenera! I’m taking a break from Dungeon World to get a little more mechanics for my players (from their own request).

But, I’ll keep using the setting and monsters for Dungeon World. This is the only game I know where Monster creation is easier than DW.

TL;DR Highly recommended, in a very similar vein as *World games, but with a bit more of a mechanical feel. AND I get to use my d20s! I missed those guys.

16 thoughts on “Shameless plug for Numenera, the new story-driven game from Monte Cook.”

  1. No, I’m listening to it now, and I can appreciate all of your points. My group wants to have more player-centric mechanics. For example, In Dungeon World, there may be a villain that you can’t hit, because he’s just too fast. My players have been struggling with the idea that they can’t even ATTEMPT to do some things. 

    Maybe there’s a better way to handle it, but my favorite aspect of Numenera is that all the difficulty and challenge is placed before the character, and it’s up to THEM to overcome it, it’s not up to the GM to determine the pass/fail. 

    I’m excited to combine the best parts of numenera(setting, cyphers, monsters) with Dungeon World(bonds, narrative-actions, etc). Point being, I’ve gotten a lot out of numenera, but I’ll be the last one to claim its perfect. It’s been a very educational read for me (a relatively new GM).

  2. Huh. I see Dungeon World working exactly the same way you described Numenera. The difficulty and challenge is placed before the character, and it’s up to them to overcome it. In DW though, it’s just not a mechanical or numerical difficulty. It’s a fictional one.

    To use your example of a really fast enemy that the players can’t hit. It’s up to THEM to find a way to do it. Set up a trap to catch him/her. Go research a spell to slow him/her down. Go find something that he/she cares about and threaten that. There are lots of ways to defeat this super-fast villain, but going toe-to -toe against them where they can utilize their speed is simply not one of them. If the players continue to do that, they will continue to get beaten.

    It’s like going to fight an Elder Dragon with a tinfoil sword and shield. Unless you do something incredibly clever, you’re just going to end up as a pile of ash.

  3. I like the idea of Num, but the execution is really clunky. Too clunky for the bland results it generates. The setting and art are evocative.

  4. Thw world is a real gem, but the system does seem flawed with the D20 being a cruel tool. There was just ideas from a listener at Knights of the Night Actual Play podcast how to possibly tackle that in the similar manner as FATE allows players to affect the rolls after they’ve been made.

  5. I was disappointed with both the setting and the system. The world felt like any other generic fantasy setting, but with hand wave-y “mystery tech” replacing the usual magic. There were elements of the system I liked, but overall it was nowhere as innovative nor as narrative as it claimed to be.

  6. When you look at GM intrusions (is that the word?), they are a mess. 

    They are somewehre between a AW Hard move and a compel in Fate Core. 

    However you don’t have the guidance of either. A compel is based on an aspect the player choose (unless it is a scene aspect) so the trouble that they will get is something they signed of on. Its something they want to happen to their character. 

    It is also not like a Hard Move because moves have a list of things you are allowed to do. There also is a guiding quality because you have principles that your moves are based on. 

    And then you are only to do what? 1 per hour/4 per session. That is nothing? That is not a tool for the gm to use effectively. When can you just decided something bad is happening now and when do you have to intrude to do it? If your prep says a road is filled with landmines and then the players activate them because they didn’t bother to check, is this okay or should you do an intrusion to do that? 

    An intrusion on a 1 is also nothing less then a critical failure with a fancy name. 

    I really don’t like this mechanic. 

  7. I read that article and didn’t really know what to make of it. On the one hand, it really helps new GMs by highlighting that there should be a conversation about what’s happening in the fiction before a die roll is callef for. On the other hand, nothing in that article is all that specific to Numenera; it’s stuff that should be happening in all games.

    I wouldn’t say Monte Cook was “phoning it in” with the rules or that article. But I would say that Numenera is only innovative if you’ve only even played D&D. I can see elements of other game systems in the Cypher System, but they feel watered down.

  8. The “problem” here is that these are all valid interpretations but ones that a lot of smart people came up with some time ago. This reads like a really trad player suddenly finding something new you can do with RPG rules. Not like a big name designer. I would expect more from MC. 

  9. I like a lot of what Numenera has to offer as a system. That said, I agree that GM Intrusions could be better. The biggest issue for me is the way that abilities are handled. But I love difficulty steps, attribute pools, effort/edge, abstract weapons/armor, cyphers, etc…

    I want to write a fan supplement that focuses on changing the things I don’t like.

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