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Subject: Playtesting a T.I.M.E Stories scenario by email rss

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Ramon Ruiz
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Hi, I am currently in the early stages of developing a custom scenario for T.I.M.E Stories and I've been recently thinking about how would I do my playtests.

As this is a decksploration game, playtesting with the same group over and over again would not be optimal, and crafting a full set of cards for every playtest would result in a total pain...

Then I had an idea, that would go like this:

I would act basically as a "quasi-classic" Game Master, playing with 4 other playtesters. I would present the scenario's specific rules, the receptacles to choose and all the necessary information, and put the players into the first location, which I would describe the best I could with drawings or schemas or whatever needed. Then we would play like in a normal T.I.M.E Stories session, but with me trying to play as the Game itself.

I hope you get the idea... Would anyone be interested in trying this?

EDIT (Jan 5, 17) ------------------------------------------------------

Development stage:

Main story
Story flow diagram
Briefing and Specific rules (Base)
Base cards
Receptacle profiles
Receptacle cards
Location list
Location texts
Location panoramas
Location cards
Overall map
Initial map cards
Objects list
Object cards

Interested users:

(If you are listed in a wrong category, please let me know. I've made this categories based on the microbadges you own)

Know the game's mechanics

E Gorlab **
E Ren3 **
E Pxool **
E stephaniepa **
E fpvillalobos **
E Dolus **
E txnull **

New to the game's mechanics

E Laurence Hung **
E spazz451
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Walts
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Sounds interesting ... I'd certainly give it a go.

What's the scenario going to be about?

Walts


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David DeVoss
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I would also be willing to try it out. I think T.I.M.E Stories might work quite well being played over email anyway.
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Ramon Ruiz
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Gorlab wrote:
What's the scenario going to be about?


It's an incursion to a military bunker to steal something. It will be at night so it's more like a stealth incursion than an action shooter. There is some deduction also, and players will be "blind" in terms of briefing information because it is a rival military bunker and the Agency's intelligence services have not been able to get detailed information about what's inside.

Pxool wrote:
I think T.I.M.E Stories might work quite well being played over email anyway.


Yes, when I was thinkink about all this, it became clear that thisgame is like a classic roleplaying game, with an automated Game Master.
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Walts
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Play-by-Forum might be better than PBEM as players need to
discuss moves, strategies and anything else that crops up
during the game? ... Walts
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Ren
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Sounds interesting, I'd be up for it.
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Ramon Ruiz
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Gorlab wrote:
Play-by-Forum might be better than PBEM as players need to
discuss moves, strategies and anything else that crops up
during the game? ... Walts


I don't know... I think a combination of both would be the best solution, as there are moments for discussion (forum) but also moments when one reads cards for himself (email). Doing it like this would end in a thread full of spoilers for a non released scenario, and possibly contaminating future testers... Maybe a password closed thread, but I think that's not possible here in bgg.
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Stephen Sparks
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I'm played forum games with hidden information before and it was typically in GeekMail so it was still all located on BGG and worked pretty well.

I am interested, though I am curious if I would need to own/have played TIME Stories previously.
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Ramon Ruiz
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spazz451 wrote:
I'm played forum games with hidden information before and it was typically in GeekMail so it was still all located on BGG and worked pretty well.

I am interested, though I am curious if I would need to own/have played TIME Stories previously.


I think it would be preferred that you had played the game previously, because there will be no board nor cards here and I will need you to play this as if there were actually cards on a table. At least it would be necessary that you knew the game's mechanics to be able to give proper feedback.

At least for the first few playtests I host... Maybe with the game a bit more adjusted!
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FPV
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I'm interested if you need another player.
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Travis Dean
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I am interested and if you need me for a future playtest after the first run through (if it's full), just GM me when you need me.
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Ramon Ruiz
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I have edited the first post of this thread. Please take a look at it, as I will be updating it with relevant information.

Apart from that, I would like to know your opinion on which would be the best way to do this playtests. I propose some:

E Play by Forum & GeekMail: I would start a new thread for every playetest I host and post the links and player lists here. Card reading would be through GeekMail and location explanations, group discussion and everything involving the whole group would be, publicly, on the threads. This option would result in a spoiler filled thread, possibly contaminating future playtests.

E Play by Whatsapp/Line: This would be the same, but through an instant messaging system. I would propose Line as it works on PC too, because all the writing on a phone would be veeeery painful. This solution it not as "easy" as the first one, but would be more "private".
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Walts
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thisisrhun wrote:
... E Play by Forum & GeekMail: I would start a new thread for every playetest I host ...

This seems the most practical way to play, but would be spoiler heavy.

All you could do is ask future playtesters not to follow the game threads,
else they'll spoil the fun of the scenario's for themselves? ... Walts
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Ren
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Whatsapp also has a web/PC option. Isn't email simpler, though? It's private, so no spoilers would be floating around, and it doesn't require potential playtesters to install new apps.
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Steph Pearce
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I'd like to give it a try (for whichever round of playtesting you need). I'm curious to see how this will work.

To be honest, military themes aren't my first love, but I like the fact that this is more of a covert mission than a "shoot everything that moves" scenario.

I'd be okay with PBF/Geekmail or using Whatsapp/Slack. I could see Geekmail getting pretty cluttered with the first option, but either way is fine with me.

I am familiar with the game and mechanics.

And no hard feelings if you don't want/need me to playtest. I'm just throwing my name in the hat.
 
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Lawrence Hung
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Hmmm...does it require prior experience with T.I.M.E. for the playtest? I am curious about this and want to know more. Is there something Core Rulebook you can direct me to? What about a Playtester outside the state? Can Whatsapp work like the same with different time zone?
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David DeVoss
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thisisrhun wrote:

New to the game's mechanics

E Pxool


I can be moved to the familiar with the game's mechanics section. I have played every available expansion and play tested someone else's T.I.M.E Stories module as well.

Edit: Also I think that Geekmail/ Forum would work the best for me.
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Ramon Ruiz
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First post edited with an updated player list.
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Ramon Ruiz
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Hello, everyone.

In a few days, I hope, all the texts will be finished and we will be ready to start playing.

I want to ask all of you who are listed in the first page to confirm your interest and to subscribe to this thread.

I'm starting to get interested in how the ones that have not played the game before actually play this scenario, as well as testing it with experienced players, so I will be hosting two plays simultaneously.

To the ones not familiarised with the game, I'd ask you to, well, familiarise with the rulebook and the mechanics before we begin. You can find a digital version of the rules on the files section on the base game's profile page. Please be aware that by doing this playtest you will lose some effect of surprise of an eventual "real" T.I.M.E Stories play, as you will not be as surprised by some effects that this game presents as if you were truly new to it.

Said that, I'll keep you informed of the development status until the day we are ready to set off.
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Steph Pearce
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Confirmed. Already subscribed.

FYI, I'm pretty sure Dolus is familiar with the game.
 
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FPV
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Hey Ramon

I've played Asylum and Marcy Case.
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Ren
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I've also already subscribed.

Is this your first time playtesting a scenario? If so, maybe consider running it with just one group so you can make any necessary revisions and the second group can tackle the revised scenario with fresh eyes. Since the nature of the game means a player can only be a useful tester once.
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David DeVoss
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Confirmed and already subscribed. Also I agree with Ren3 in staggering the playtests so a second group can try an updated scenario.
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Ramon Ruiz
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Ren3 wrote:
I've also already subscribed.

Is this your first time playtesting a scenario? If so, maybe consider running it with just one group so you can make any necessary revisions and the second group can tackle the revised scenario with fresh eyes. Since the nature of the game means a player can only be a useful tester once.


Yes, It was a bad idea since I wrote it down. I'll update the player list by now.
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Ramon Ruiz
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Pxool wrote:
I have [...] play tested someone else's T.I.M.E Stories module as well.


Has anyone else done this before? With a physical copy or in whichever other way...
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