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Soren Hjorth
Soren Hjorth's picture
A GROUP OF SIX
game planning

Since the game was pretty much written with the mindset of having 5 players as a max, I'm kinda stumbed on what sort of precautions
one should take when my game will probably have 6 players?

Some solutions I've considered.

  • Increasing Target Number for Raises to 12
  • Setting up a System for Assisting to Avoid 6 Players unloading all their raises on the same Risk
    • Perhaps saying that adding a Hero Point to a co-player benches you for a single Risk.
  • Just... never giving them the same Risk? Just keep them apart in Action Sequences?
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/Soren A. Hjorth
 

Harliquinn Whit...
Harliquinn Whiteshadow's picture

We play with 6 Regularly...so I can give some insight:

1) Our combats tend to be less common (We will have 1 'big combat' every 2 sessions maybe). I haven't adjusted them at all, except for implementing a new rule on attacking Brutes by Duelists (See another thread for "Whirl" - Reduce Brute Strength of a single Brute Squad by Weaponry/2 (Rounded up) + Raises spent. Can be used once per round. 

That said, in combat I haven't found that you need to change how assists or risks work or artificially up the Raises = 10 (Unless you spend a Danger Point for 15).

The thing you need to be aware of this: Your combats MUST have several opportunities that the heroes will WANT to take advantage of and several consequences that the heroes will WANT to avoid. If you want your combats to feel dynamic and fun with lots going on and not just 6 heroes completely demolishing a few brute squads, you need a good mix of things to keep them busy.

1) Have multiple henchmen/villains. I have 3 Duelists in my group so having multiple henchmen (Rank 5 or lower Villains) is key to keeping everyone from focusing on one enemy right away

2) Have more and smaller brute squads. If you like brutes to feel at least somewhat useful, break your groups down into 3-4 instead of 6-8. Having 4 groups of 4 Brutes is better than 2 groups of 8, when you have 6 heroes.

3) Introduce onlookers/bystanders/victims. If you can, set up combats with people that need protected, rescued, or rushed out of any area. These become either opportunities (if it's 'save as many as possible') or consequences (if it's 'save the king's family') that last throughout the fight. For instance, a fight breaks out at a masquerade ball. Each round, there are say 4 Consequences of the royal family being attacked/hurt. During the round, anyone can spend a Raise to overcome a consequence and allow the player to explain how they save a particular member. This gives non-combat players and those with more raises something else to do

4) Introduce environmental conditions: Fire is always a good one, but so is a leaking ship, a grenade that will go off at a certain time, crumbling walls, or slippery ground.

5) Split the party. If you can, create a multi-level/multi-location action sequence. This breaks up your 6 hero table into 2 3-hero tables and each one can have a more traditional fight, since they can't assist across locations, etc.

6) Opportunities and consequences. Make sure to have some ideas for general opportunities and consequences. For instance, while fighting on a ship, consequences each round not to lose footing and fall down/overboard/get tangled up....or while fighting in a ballroom, an opportunity to save some expensive piece of art (maybe earn Wealth at the end as a reward by the host)...

I've found these all work better than artificially changing core rules only because of more folks.

I also make extensive use of "Dramatic Sequences" for traveling or city RP. This prevents the need to make one-off risk rolls when everyone could assist, etc. So when the group goes into Barcino, I have them all make an approach on their general goals/methods and then use those Raises to accomplish things in town.

Hope this helps

John

Soren Hjorth
Soren Hjorth's picture

Thanks, this are pretty sound advice.

I'd like to hear more on that last part?
Dramatic Sequences for travelling? How long are those sequences? Do you have some more examples?

/Soren A. Hjorth
 

Harliquinn Whit...
Harliquinn Whiteshadow's picture

So as an example: The group is traveling from Stutgart to Buche tracking down a villain. At the start of the session, I explain the journey will be a Dramatic Sequence. I ask each player what their Hero is generally going to do on the road and in towns. Some will be more "Keeping an eye out for danger", others will say they are "drinking and carousing at bars to gather information".

I also ask folks if they'll be assisting someone with their approach. Then everyone rolls their dice and records how many Raises.

Then as we RP the trip (watches, encounters on the road, getting to town, exploring town) we use those Raises to accomplish things related to the story. So if at a roadside inn the info gatherer wants to find out if the villain they are following has come through, there are Raises to be spent for that. They may also get to unlock opportunities or overcome consequences such as the villain hearing they are asking about him, etc.

Now you will need to judge about how long each Dramatic Sequence lasts. For instance, if the group is going through 2-3 cities, you might have a DS for each leg of the journey.

John

BluSponge
BluSponge's picture

Excellent advice, Harley!

See, its things like this that make me wisj the JWP crew wasn't so adimant AGAINST a GM's Guide for 7th Sea.  A little digest sized paper back full of info like this — how to run the game as opposed to a bunch of new rules — would be a fantastic resource!  Forget filling it with villains and magic items.  Fill it with Essays (ala Play Dirty) on how to make your game sing.  I'd by something like that in a heart beat!

Harliquinn Whit...
Harliquinn Whiteshadow's picture

Sounds like a good player created resource on the new site!

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