A Revised Shapeshifter Move for the Druid
Because I’m thinking about core DW classes and their moves, and maaaybe because I’m avoiding other work I should probably be doing, here’s my stab at redo the Druid’s Shapeshift move.
I think Shapeshift is playable as-is, and in theory I like the idea of rolling x1 to take on a form that “banks” limited auto-successes for the future. But in play… eh? I find that play kind of grinds to a halt when the druid takes on new forms, as you’re establishing the moves of that form. And I also find that it’s a bit too reliable and just too good, as:
1) you get too much hold (3, 2, or even 1 on a miss)
2) spending the hold generally skips a roll, so there’s none of the interesting results that you see on a 7-9 or even a 10+ to Hack & Slash or Defy Danger
3) Because “At any time, you can spend all your hold to revert to your natural form,” there’s relatively little risk involved with taking on an otherwise useful form. Why not turn into a polar bear while you wander around the dungeon? If it starts to cause trouble, just shed the form.
4) Because spending hold generally lets you skip rolls, WIS becomes the hands-down most important stat and you can generally shapeshift your way around any shortcomings to your physical stats.
5) The only time the GM gets direct say over what happens with the move is on a 6-, and because WIS is so important, it’s not going to come up that much.
6) Players can keep spamming the same forms over and over again.
So… a revision. I know lots of folks have floated revisions, but this is mine.
The key things I’m doing here are:
* Removing the roll to assume a shape, and instead making there be some (hopefully) interesting choices
* Removing the list of “monster” moves that you spend hold to use, and making the move basically all about fictional positioning instead of “banking” successes.
* Giving the character an instinct for the form, as a way to add (further) complications to being shapeshifted
* Making them roll to leave the shapeshift, giving the GM a chance to screw with them on a miss, or to inflict a lingering complication (the instinct), or to take that form away as an option.
* Explicitly calling out that you don’t get the purely supernatural powers of a form you take, unless you take a move to get them.
Anyhow, I’m sure there are some rough spots, but give it a look and let me know what you think! And if anyone feels up to trying these out, or putting these into a formal-looking playbook, let me know!