I experimented with the organizational structure of Dungeon World and applied it to one of the crunchiest games out…

I experimented with the organizational structure of Dungeon World and applied it to one of the crunchiest games out…

I experimented with the organizational structure of Dungeon World and applied it to one of the crunchiest games out there today…Shadowrun. Take a look and see if there’s potential in it for you!

Originally shared by Ed Gibbs

This is every major action in Shadowrun, worded in a player-facing, “move” fashion, a la Dungeon World. 

The intent here was to create something players and GMs alike could look at and play right off the page, without having to weed through the exact wording of the text or having to commit whole procedures to memory. Being a Playbook in the PbtA style, this document exclusively covers actions taken by the runner. Anything not directly affected by the runner him/herself, such as recoil, is not listed here (If/when I get time, I’ll do something similar for GM stuff).

On the other hand, I’ve taken the liberty of breaking some things that aren’t actions into “special” actions. These actions are designated as such in the document. For example, getting shot in combat now has the action “Resist Damage.” It specifies in the action description that this action is actually a part of the attacker’s successful attack action.

So ideally, the flow of the game is like this:

Player A: “I shoot the ork ganger!”

GM: “What gun are you using?”

A: “My SMG!”

GM: “Okay…single shot, short or long burst?”

A: “Umm…what’s the difference?”

GM: Check the “Fire Weapon, Single shot,” “Fire Weapon, Short Burst,” and “Fire Weapon, Long Burst” moves.

A (glances at them while the GM fields another few questions from other players): “Okay, short burst!”

GM: Alright, follow the move, and apply -1 for recoil, unless you’ve got any recoil suppression on that SMG.

A (follows the move as written in the playbook, the GM rolls dice for the ganger): “I got him! Says here he must then make the Resist Damage move…”

GM: Got it (checks Resist Damage move, follows rules listed on the move): “Ouch! The ork doubles over and slinks to the ground, blood seeping out of holes in his abdomen.” 

4 thoughts on “I experimented with the organizational structure of Dungeon World and applied it to one of the crunchiest games out…”

  1. I’ve looked at it, it is indeed very impressive! My problem, though…the same as my problem with the Fare Core hack, and the Cortex hack, and even the d20 hack….is that I sincrerly, truly believe that the mechanics are a part of the world that is Shadowrun. Especially if you’ve played it since the start. Those piles of six-sided dice on the table. The constant pouring over source material, hoping you’ll find a heretofore unknown +1 dice pool modifier, a single die that could make the difference between dropping that sniper at 200 meters before he does it to your mage!

    Now, I again, I frickin’ love PbtA games. The first hack I ever wrote was a zombie apocalypse hack of Dungeon World. I get that game. And you know what I get about it? I get that gear does not friggin’ matter at all!!!! It’s all about story, man! Well, Shadowrun is different. Part of what makes Shadowrun different and unique, and that world so fucking COOL…is that all that gear? It does mean something! It’s that there’s a table of guns all of them can be pistols, all of them could have subtle variations in a wide array of statistics…accuracy, armor penetration, damage, effective range, clip size, firing modes…and that players, totally in theri roleplaying place, can say “I like THIS gun becuse it does MAWR damage!” While the assassin sidles up and goes “I’ll take the accuracy gun. Who needs a bullet to do damage?”

    SEE?!?! That’s just a microscopic example of why the mechanics…all the fuckin’ crunch, all those goddam numbers…is such an important part of Shadowrun’s setting. You hack all this into Apocalypse World, or Fate Core? You’ll get a great cyberpunk-themed game….but it ain’t Shadowrun. The only way you get to play Shadowrun is to play Shadowrun.

    So what I’m taking from Apocalypse World are not its mechanics. I’m taking its radical approach to rules writing, where the reader is directly addresses, and directly told what to do, when to do it, and how it’s done. Because Shadowrun does that too. But it doesn’t have the voice to make it as intuitive as it should be. So here is my meager, humble attempt at colliding two awesome worlds!

  2. If that’s what you’re shooting for, then I think you’re better off adding some of the AW concepts to Shadowrun than to add a ton of Shadowrun crunch to AW, because you aren’t going to make Shadowrun any more accessible by adding all of these “sub-rules” to AW to compensate for it’s lack of “crunch”.

Comments are closed.