[Shock:] Questions before first play

edited September 2010 in Story Games
We're playing Shock for the first tomorrow, and I have a few questions. I can only remember one at the moment, and it's the most important I think. I'll be back later.

When you roll your d4s, Audience included, does only the highest die count among all participants? Say I roll a 2, my Antag rolls a 3, and the sole Audience member rolls a 4. Who gets to modify rolls? Everyone? Just the Audience member?



  • The *Tagonists' d4 go against their opponents' d10. The Audience modifies the result afterwards (if the member with the highest result wants to). The two things happen one after the other.
  • Cool, thanks!

    What if the *Tagonists want to kill each other before the Story Goal? Either Protag or Antag, but especially Protag. Can the Protag die before the Story Goal scene? What does the player of a fallen Protag do? Just play the Audience?

    I can't seem to locate this info in the book, but if there's a page reference you can give me I'd appreciate it.
  • IIRC the "guest Protag" (the one who's turn is NOT) can't suffer any permanent event unless its player agrees.

    A character's story can end in its second scene (he could even reach his Story Goal).

    The book says nothing about a player whose Protag dies early. He'll still play Antag for the player on his right, though, so he's not out of the game.
    Since his own Protag's later scene(s) will not be played the game will simply be a bit shorter (and he'll obviously act as Audience in all the scenes where he's not playing Antag).
  • edited September 2010
    Huh, that sounds like the kind of question people tend to fall in when they're thinking about a game they haven't played yet.

    There is no such rule and I'll tell you why. The Story Goal is what defines the arc of the Protagonist. Both *Tagonist players will aim at confronting the Story Goal. This will hardly happen in the first scene! Also remember that the game is extremely tight. As per the Credit use rule, the Antag can use 3-6 per Conflict, out of a total of 13. So you'll go through 4 conflicts per Protagonist at maximum. The last conflict addresses the Story Goal. The rules also say that this last conflict can arise even if the Credits left are over 6, if it makes sense. It is possible that a way for the Antag to play the final conflict is to put the life of the Protag at stake. Keep in mind that the Antag player is "the Protagonist player's partner. The opposition you're putting there is to push hir in fruitful directions" [page 40]

    So, as you can see, the spirit is cooperative. Killing a Protag before the Story Goal (and without bringing the story to it) does not belong to this game. [or it might! It's so difficult to know without playing the actual scene!]

    So I'd reccomend not to sweat it :) In play, it will make sense. Do read the Antagonist section again, that might help.

    [Also, I'm taking this occasion to write down some more things on how I understood the game. Right now I'm editing the Italian version of the rules, so discussing parts of them is a nice exercise for me!]
    [edit: holy crosspost Renato! Now my post feels a bit high and mighty, like I understood everything of the game. Here's hoping Joshua will chime in.]
  • That makes a lot of sense! I like the pacing mechanism a lot, I just wanted to make sure I understood it fully.

    Giulia: No worries about the tone of your post, I appreciate firmness.

    Thanks guys!
  • You're welcome!

    Hope you enjoy the game tomorrow!
  • Also, its worth noting that "being dead" isn't as big an impediment to play as you might think. The memory of your Protag or their actions, the things they set in motion, all those things can still go on, narratively even if the character itself is dead. That's a huge thing you can run with, if you feel up to it.

  • Alexander, all those things are Minutiæ. If your character dies, but "brain transfers" exist and the character's death didn't resolve the Story Goal, then dying is just one of a bunch of things your character can do. If the character's memory is the only impact zie'll have on the story, that's just the content of your Minutia die as Audience.

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