Stealth in DW
Yesterday I ran a short game with one player, and there were some stealth situations that I have no idea how to play out.
There is a small jail, with two cells. A guard is asleep at the desk.
Player looks over the guard, sees they have the keys in sight, possibly grabbable.
Player tries to grab the keys through the bars.
To me this seems like a Defy Danger roll+dex. However, there are some issues with this:
– There is no immenent danger – if you fail, the guard wakes up and then something else happens. So maybe it is not Defy Danger?
– The book says, “by getting out of the way or acting fast” – this is not fast, it’s actually going to be slow. So again, maybe not Defy Danger?
– But if it’s not Defy Danger, the GM just makes a move, and this seems arbitrary – like, the player has no say in how skillful they are in doing this thing. There are basically two ways this can go – the keys are gotten easily, no consequence; or, the keys are not gotten easily, some consequence (maybe you rattle them a bit and the guard shifts, might be waking up – show signs of an approaching threat). However, even something as benign as that move seems really arbitary – the character had no control over whether they rattled the keys. Dice seem like a good way of deciding that kind of control.
– But, if it is Defy Danger, the partial success is:
> the GM will offer you a worse outcome, hard bargain, or ugly choice.
I have no idea what any of that would be for “I am trying to be sneaky and I succeed kind of”.
It seems like this is a sitation that has no danger unless you screw it up, and deciding if you screwed it up by GM move seems arbitrary or by roll, too harsh (partial success that will feel like a failure).
Anyone have examples or ideas on how I am doing this wrong, or could do it better?
BTW they rolled a 12 so it just worked fine, and I didn’t have to resolve partial success, but they wanted to know what that might look like.
talked about it with the player, and I think it would be something like:
– Failure: keys drop, guard wakes up
– Partial success: you get the keys, but the guard stirs a bit and might be waking up
I guess that is a worse outcome… what would a hard bagain or ugly choice be like? Defy Danger is really confusing to me.