Last week, I tweeted a little note about realizing that Apocalypse World is the system I've been wanting for playing Unknown Armies, now that I'm a hippie story game nerd. I've spoken with Seth Ben-Ezra & John Harper about it some, and I thought I would post some initial thoughts here.
Free free to chime in. As I get time and inclination, I'll actually write up some playbooks and whatnot.
The core changes:
* The tentative title for this is Unknown World. Not the greatest title, but it works for now.
* There is no Weird stat. Everything in UW is a Weird stat to someone. But since I like the distribution of five stats, I'm replacing Weird with Money -- it Alex Abel stat. It works like Circles & Resources in BW. Of course, it doesn't just mean "money" -- that's just a sexy name for "I have dudes and stuff at my fucking disposal."
* The Street/Global/Cosmic paradigm is represented in improvement. The "advanced" improvement you can do after five improvements is Global level. After that is Cosmic.
* Each adept & archetype is its own playbook. There are some "normal" characters, too, for enforcers, cabal leaders, etc.
* Some basic moves will change, of course. Opening your mind is something I'm completely striking, in lieu of all the other weirdness in UA.
* Highlighting will work differently. Each playbook will tell you what your Obsession Stat is (otherwise known as Ox). That's highlighted. Then the group highlights another stat each time by some mechanism I have yet to decide on. (In some cases, the playbook will tell you you can choose between a could stats for Ox. And if you take on a new playbook, it must have the same Ox that you already have. Ox should feel limiting.)
* There needs to be another form of Harm for Madness. I neither like the idea of just one meter or all five, though.
* I've given most of my thought to adept playbooks. Each have moves for gaining charges & taboo, and can choose from a number of formula spells as moves. This makes the game feel rather different because the blast spells are effectively Going Aggro...except with Ox rather than Hard. So every adept is fucking dangerous. And crazy. I like it.
* Possible Oxs for some schools: Entropomancy is Cool (you're risking your shit all the time), Epideromancy is Hard (you're fucking cutting into yourself), Pornomancy is Hot (you're a manipulative fucker), Cliomancy is Sharp (you're a goddamned history mage), Plutomancy is Money (duh). Some are hard to peg into one, so you get to choose what your Ox is: Dipsomancy could be Cool or Sharp (you're either a super-chillax drunk or a sharp-minded drunk), Bibliomancy is Sharp or Money (either it's feeding your mind or the resources of books at your disposal is your power), etc.
* I'm ambivalent about keeping/dropping the sex moves. They don't feel right for UA out of the box, but there will be some thematic/content drifting with this hack. It's not about making AW fit UA, but about marrying the two to make something awesome. Or, at least getting them to swap genetic filth all over a dirty alley while we watch.
* There's no barter. This is not a world of material scarcity but the scarcity of power. Plus, that's what the Money stat is for.
Seriously, this idea is on fucking fire in my mind.