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Author Topic: AToW/RPG with 2 players?  (Read 1469 times)

Alex Keller

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AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« on: 12 January 2012, 13:58:46 »
Hello, has anyone had experience playing AToW or the 3rd Edition RPG with just 2 players?  So 1 gamemaster and 1 player?  I'm looking to get started but there's just two of us.  Any info or advice would be helpful.  Thanks.

Coronoides

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #1 on: 13 January 2012, 21:23:02 »
While I don't have much ATOW experience yet I have been running games various rpg's for about 28 years so here's some generic advice...

Don't be tempted to over-power the character to compensate. In ATOW terms don't grant more XP at creation. Typically this does nothing to overcome the major weakness of a one person party (no back-up) and means your bad guys have to be tougher reducing the referees margin for error to razor thin.

Do encourage a PC concept with broad capabilities. For example for ATOW don't create a skilled MechWarrior with and Assualt Mech, instead if you really must play a mechwarrior go for a light mech and use the saved xp to build a noble/pollitical background or some time as a secret agent or as a wilderness hunter. You get the idea.

Do provide an employer organisation. The employer provides direction when the player/PC faulters in driving the story. Also an employer can provide NPC back-up, gear, medevac or whatever is reasonable within the scope of the story.

Cut-scenes: If an NPC the PC cares about is in trouble give the player control of the NPC for the scene even if the PC is not present. Be sure to instruct the player to stay 'in-character' for that NPC.

Adventure in a civilised place. In a Jihad style total warfare battleground any single PC is gonna die quick. Consider instead peacekeeping in a recently 'liberated' planet or spying within the palace on New Avalon. Where the rule of law applies and communication is good baddies must consider the consequences of being charged with murder, they might try to blackmail or hold hostage rather than kill, muggers rob but don't stop to slit throats after etc. Also the PC can call her employer or the authorities for help.

Help has consequences and is limited. A med-evac takes 1d6x10min to arrive, too many calls for help and you miss out on promotion, the cops want to ask questions you don't want to answer etc.

Injure the PC. When the PC messed up don't fail to inflict logical consequences. Not just wounds, try debt, loss of face, loss of prized gear etc. There has to be a feeling of consequences to failure or the tale becomes hollow.

Kill the PC. Yep. having said all of the above the entertainment of rpg is greatly diminished if the player believes her PC is never at risk. I recomend about once every five hours of play there should be some obsticle that could end the game (a firefight, an even mech battle, a murder investigation, etc)
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guardiandashi

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #2 on: 14 January 2012, 00:06:23 »
also depending on the experience of the player it may also be helpful to have them make up more than 1 char

example a standard D&D party is built around 4 chars so it might simplify things (in some ways) to have the player make and run more than 1 char, also the gm may toss in a "npc" or 2 that they kind of run as if they were players note this makes the gm have to do more "double think" but its an option to consider

Alex Keller

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #3 on: 16 January 2012, 13:18:56 »
Thanks.  This is good and useful advice.  So have either of you played with just 2 players?

guardiandashi

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #4 on: 16 January 2012, 15:55:38 »
yes
both on purpose and "unintentionally"

I have also been in a situation where the "gm" failed to READ the effects on a a template (and misapplied effects) and failed to apply the encounter xp correctly (it was a D&D 3rd edition  session) and my char was getting seriously destroyed by an encounter

have not done atow with only 2 but it shouldn't be "that different"

Coronoides

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #5 on: 18 January 2012, 04:29:45 »
Thanks.  This is good and useful advice.  So have either of you played with just 2 players?

Yes hundreds of times but not with ATOW
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Alex Keller

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #6 on: 18 January 2012, 12:37:47 »
What about using the 3rd Edition RPG rules?  Is the system that different?

guardiandashi

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #7 on: 19 January 2012, 03:47:52 »
atow is a lot closer to mechwarrior 2nd edition in many ways than 3rd

Storm_Lion_Coalition

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #8 on: 19 January 2012, 04:45:06 »
A 1-0n-1 campaign that i enjoyed a lot was running a gladiator on Solaris VII.  The spy/assassin/covert ops/secret agent character works really well too.  I also agree with the political/noble background.  Gives lots of stuff to do outside of the cockpit if that's what you're looking for.  It gives the option down the road even if you aren't looking for it now.  But then so does the Gladiator campaign, and that gives LOTS of IN cockpit action without needing any companions.

Mohammed As`Zaman Bey

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Re: AToW/RPG with 2 players?
« Reply #9 on: 26 January 2012, 22:44:45 »
  My gaming club does that sort of thing all the time. Nothing stops a solo player from running a  lance or a multiple-regiment military unit- It depends on how much work you want to do.

  My current RPG character broke off from a larger party, served in another player's merc unit, then went solo to form his own unit which is made up of NPCs. That same player is ready to move on as a House regular.
 Yes, the GM has to handle players separately but the guys with larger units also have a pool of players able to act as subordinate commanders, opposing forces and other NPCs.