How can I encourage interaction among players during recollections of past events?

What techniques have you used to meaningfully engage with PC backstories after character creation?

The story: I run a once-yearly game for 3 friends. We hide away in Palm Desert and play for about 72hrs straight. Every year, there’s the challenge of reconnecting with the characters and the storyline. Every year, I also tinker with the rules.

This year, I’m planning to ask them to flashback to an event in their backstory – flesh out the fiction a bit, stretch the legs of DW, and give me as GM a bit of a break. I’m thinking that the “Conduct a Mission” move from The Sprawl is an interesting way for the players to engage (pasted the move below).


When you lead a planned and coordinated operation, describe your plan and who is carrying it out then roll Edge.

10+: everything goes according to plan; you and your team are in perfect position to carry out the final element of the plan. The MC will describe the scene and present you with the opportunity to act.

7-9: You get your opportunity to act, but it won’t go as smoothly as you would like, choose 1: Ђ A preliminary task was not completed on time or accurately; choose a task and the MC will describe how it causes a problem Ђ There’s an unexpected complication; choose a consideration and the MC will describe how it causes a problem

6-: the MC will describe the scene and make a move that puts you on the back foot; both problems described under 7-9 apply as well

One thought on “Flashback”

  1. Could you just go around and have them each set a flashback scene. Maybe have another character request the tale, like telling campfire stories?

    A: Hey B, tell us about how you got that scar?

    C: Yeah, wasn’t it in the battle of argor?


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