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Subject: 2nd adventure - a bit puzzled about what happens next rss

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Peter Thur
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So, my second try at the Solitaire Story Game. The first adventure ended by defeating the enemy in turn 6(!)... maybe due to an enemy encounter where I overlooked a line. blush Anyway, a successful romp through the 1960 that gave the doctor 5 additional luck points. Yay!

Qualities
- Brains: 11
- Brawn: 7
- Bravery: 8

Traits:
Aware, Computers, Domination (those aren't the droids... wait, wrong series), Engineering, Pilot, Tardis, Thief
Charisma bought for 4 luck points (seemed like a very useful trait in the first adventure)

Luck: 5

Equipment: Sonic Screwdriver and a Timelord Fob-watch I found in the first adventure.

Companions: None. Had a few allies, but no one wanted to accompany a man who claims to live in a police box.

Where is the Tardis going to drop me off this time? I open the door... the Wild West 1868. I wish I had a revolver.

Explore always looks like a sensible first action. There's an old prospector but he isn't the talkative kind, mumbles some greetings and rides into the sunset. Hmmm.
I stumble upon a mysterious cave and oh what a lucky find - it's the enemy base. Rummaging through the enemy's belongings, I'm able to conclude, who the enemy might be.

The family of blood! Now, old aquaintances - only a few days earlier I was able to chase them away from the 1960s english countryside. They really thought by skipping back a mere 100 years, they'll have some peace? Not with the Doctor! laugh By the way: DM-1 but I'm still at 0, so no loss.

Just a turn later, there's the first enemy encounter. The Doctor talks his way out of the situation and reveals the enemy's goal.
Turn 2, enemy revealed; Turn 3, goal discovered. thumbsup
And... *snigger* ... they're still trying to steal a Tardis, just like in 1962. They never learn, do they? shake



C



You may ask yourself why there's a C in the middle of this text. Let me explain: C is the point where everything went horribly wrong! The whole adventure became a quagmire of meaningless decisions without any aim or consequences - A Doctor Whoesque reproduction of Waiting for Godot!soblue

With enemy and goal revealed during turn 3 the options become a bit limited. Rescue prisoners or escape isn't necessary; resting, relaxing or moving seems quite useless. Exploring, investigating or seek information isn't possible because I already know the goal. Research looks like the reasonable choice ... and some more research ... and some more ... more snore... Hooray! A breakthrough during Turn 7! Ta-daaah, the psionic enhancer (use Brains instead of Brawn in combat). Ok, that's useful.

But the breakthrough prevents me from taking research as a further action. So that leaves "Defeat enemies" and "Wait". Defeat enemies has a DM-1 while in Turn 8. My DM total is 1 at that moment, because of some event during the research phase. So I'll wait....

In turn 9-12 I start trying to defeat the enemy (even if I'm far from being able to oppose). T9: Defeat failed... T10: Hey, rally the troops! Oh wait, forced enemy encounter... better not... T11: lose 1 luck point...

I roll an enemy encounter in T11 and meet the Son of Blood and Mother of Blood. At this point I decide, something or someone has to die in this adventure! *zap* *zap* scratch two family of blood - nice toy that psionic (sonic?) enhancer.

T12: another failed defeat enemy. shake Oh hey, a character event. It's Louisa James. In 1868? The same Louisa James I met during the first adventure in 1962? How did she get back 100 years in time? Ah, doesn't matter anyway - see, Louisa, there's already the end credits rolling across the screen. Looks like I lost the Tardis, but who cares... that won't kill me.. wait! Maybe it does! *roll* No, it doesn't... whistle

So what's the Doctor going to do in 1868? In my mind's eye I see the scene from Once Upon a Time in the West where McBain's family is killed - with David Tennant starring the role of Frank. devil

Conclusion:
The second attempt at the Solitaire Story Game left me a bit perplexed. In both games enemy and goal were revealed quite early and then there's not much to do.
Explore, Investigate, Plan, Research, Seek Information look like quite similar actions ("gather information") but are strictly limited to specific phases of the game, depending upon revealed enemy/goal. I don't want just one option of gathering information that gets renamed during the game. I'd like to actually try a strategy with a certain goal in mind to solve the problem - gain more allies, try to find equipment, try to push the DM - not choose from one resonable option and wait for something to happen.
At the end of the game, the DM was still 1. I had no idea how I could raise the DM to the needed 4 points. It would have saved a lot of time to note the Goal number and simply roll a D6 againt that number - Hooray I won! Aaww, I lost!

DWSSG is a great game with plentiful of ideas and excellent presentation. I'll certainly give it a few more tries, but this adventure left me a bit disappointed.
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Max Rith
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Hmm. Well. For one thing, uncovering the Goal early often makes for a bit of a dull game. Not having a Companion also doesn't help (instead of buying Charisma, you probably should have spent Luck to turn an Ally into a Companion). That said, there are still more things that you can do than just Research.

First is Planning. To get that +2 DM for the Goal, you would have needed to pick up an extra Aware and probably a lot more Brains and Bravery. It might have been possible, but it would have been tough. Having a Companion, or even an Ally, would have helped a lot.

So! There are two other actions in the main book to consider. First, and more generally useful, is Seek Help. It's in the back if you're using the pdf. This lets you round up a posse to help you out, and would probably have gone a long way to helping you here, both for the extra push towards the Goal bonus and for winning fights (which is probably also worth DM).

Second, you could Conflict. You don't have Demolitions, the only one which can gain you DM (though you could try it anyway), but Domination could potentially have netted you some Scarecrow allies.

If you look in the Companions, the first one I believe offers the Challenge action as another possibility (I could be mistaken). The second Companion introduces the Prevent actions, which should give you a bit more of something to strive for, though they can also make the game a bit too easy. But they're more interesting than Research or Planning, and worth considering.

That said, a few other thoughts:

First, you got the Goal on a successful Talk option. It is almost always better to take the DM in such options, if only to prevent the Goal strangle which you seem to have gotten here. Investigate and Seek Information are generally better actions than Research.

Second, you took the invention rather than the DM when you got the breakthrough. In most cases, the DM will be better. Either way, you misread the Reaearch rules - a breakthrough only prevents further Research with the same trait. So you were apparently successful with Research (Science), but you still could have performed Research with Engineering or Medicine.

Third, why didn't you Rally the Troops? If your Bravery is any good, you probably stood a decent chance of winning the fight and defeating the enemy. You don't need to be able to oppose to achieve this. I'm also unsure of why you were worried about encountering the Enemy? Usually, the only risk in subsequent Enemy encounters is of death - you generally won't lose DM. And with some soldiers, you probably stand a decent chance of surviving any encounter.
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Peter Thur
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Wow, lots of good advice in your post.

dragonlordmax wrote:
Hmm. Well. For one thing, uncovering the Goal early often makes for a bit of a dull game. Not having a Companion also doesn't help (instead of buying Charisma, you probably should have spent Luck to turn an Ally into a Companion).

Yes, you're right. Finding the enemy and the goal sounded like necessary requirements, so I tried to tick them off as soon as possible. I'll try delaying them for a few turns.
A companion seems useful indeed. During the first adventure it was easy to pick up allies. Maybe that led me to the assumption, there's always enough people around.

dragonlordmax wrote:

That said, there are still more things that you can do than just Research. First is Planning. To get that +2 DM for the Goal, you would have needed to pick up an extra Aware and probably a lot more Brains and Bravery. It might have been possible, but it would have been tough. Having a Companion, or even an Ally, would have helped a lot.

Phew, tough prerequisites. Certainly an option for experienced doctors or a bigger crew. laugh

dragonlordmax wrote:

So! There are two other actions in the main book to consider. First, and more generally useful, is Seek Help. It's in the back if you're using the pdf. This lets you round up a posse to help you out, and would probably have gone a long way to helping you here, both for the extra push towards the Goal bonus and for winning fights (which is probably also worth DM).

Second, you could Conflict. You don't have Demolitions, the only one which can gain you DM (though you could try it anyway), but Domination could potentially have netted you some Scarecrow allies.

If you look in the Companions, the first one I believe offers the Challenge action as another possibility (I could be mistaken). The second Companion introduces the Prevent actions, which should give you a bit more of something to strive for, though they can also make the game a bit too easy. But they're more interesting than Research or Planning, and worth considering.

Thanks for pointing me to these chapters. thumbsup I tried getting a grasp on the basic ruleset and haven't read the optional rules that carefully.


dragonlordmax wrote:

That said, a few other thoughts:

First, you got the Goal on a successful Talk option. It is almost always better to take the DM in such options, if only to prevent the Goal strangle which you seem to have gotten here. Investigate and Seek Information are generally better actions than Research.

Second, you took the invention rather than the DM when you got the breakthrough. In most cases, the DM will be better. Either way, you misread the Reaearch rules - a breakthrough only prevents further Research with the same trait. So you were apparently successful with Research (Science), but you still could have performed Research with Engineering or Medicine.

Third, why didn't you Rally the Troops? If your Bravery is any good, you probably stood a decent chance of winning the fight and defeating the enemy. You don't need to be able to oppose to achieve this. I'm also unsure of why you were worried about encountering the Enemy? Usually, the only risk in subsequent Enemy encounters is of death - you generally won't lose DM. And with some soldiers, you probably stand a decent chance of surviving any encounter.

Ok, that's a lesson I've learned now.laugh Compared to a necessary step in the adventure or a cool gadget, a simple DM +1 looks negligible. Those modifiers are obviously far more important.
I tried to avoid fights vs. the Family of Blood, because they appear in large numbers most of the time. There's usually 2-4 of the main villains plus D6-3 scarecrows per family member. So enemy encounters were always against 6-10 characters until Turn 11 where I was able to surprise two of them without their minions.
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Peter Thur
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By the way, I found a reasonable excuse to continue adventuring with that doctor even though he's lost his Tardis.

Sulking about his loss, he's staring at the endless prairie and suddenly notices a trail of dust in the distance. He decides to take a look and meets a young man looking for some "Doc".

Hey, congratulations. You've found THE Doctor. Huh? Not the right Doc? What's he babbling about?
Never mind, let's look what caused this dust cloud.

A few minutes later the Doctor finds a rather unusual thing - a 20th century car in the year 1868???

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Peter Thur
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Addendum: 3nd adventure
Third attempt at DWSSG:

Turn 1:
Action Explore - nothing happens
Event Enemy encounter - A Vespiform, Roll D6, Result 4, I'm dead.


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Max Rith
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Tomcat1304 wrote:
Third attempt at DWSSG:

Turn 1:
Action Explore - nothing happens
Event Enemy encounter - A Vespiform, Roll D6, Result 4, I'm dead.



Yeah, some of the Enemies are kinda lame like that (and sometimes that just happens). That said, you still had a chance to regenerate, which you may have forgotten about (easy thing to miss).

Other than, my best advice might be that, like the enemies, not all adventures are created equal, and the vespiform and the family of blood both tend to show up at some of the weaker ones (in my opinion). Maybe try using a401 for your starting adventure? It's got Rose as the freebie, and none of the enemies (except maybe Dr. Lazarus) are too bad. Your first few adventures can dramatically affect your chances of long term success - getting a Companion and building up a stock of Luck points goes a long way.

You might also consider the Classic Doctors, as they all get to start with Companions.
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Peter Thur
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I thought about looking up the rules for regeneration but decided for a fresh start anyway. laugh

And, as my girlfriend told me, many Doctor Who fans doubt the possibility of regeneration without a Tardis.
 
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