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Dokkōdō RPG 
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Post Re: Dokkōdō RPG
Part One (subparts a & B) of my design goals for Dokkodo was to make a game that had dueling mechanics I liked and reinforced the kind of samurai game* I wanted to play. Although it is still largely confined to poorly formatted notes, I believe this has been achieved.

Part Two of my design goals was more nebulous. I want the GM to be able to create scenarios easily. I want the players to look over the setting info and understand what to expect. I want to give the reader an impression of the setting not an essay on Edo period as depicted by Mssrs. Koike and Kojima. “Let Wikipedia by your sourcebook” is my philosophy when it comes to historical RPGs.

Then I read Technoir. Transmissions are perfect. Players can look over them and get a sense of the setting (it's like they are looking at postcards and snapshots instead of reading a detailed history of the FuturePunk LA) and GMs have an excellent tool for creating scenarios.

To that end I made a sample transmission for a Dokkodo location (posted below). This got me thinking more about the kinds of stories Dokkodo will tell. The protagonists in these stories usually encounter the plot after it's already begun (not unlike a noir detective) and have to untangle it. In the case of Ogami Itto (Lone Wolf and Cub) he almost always leaves town after the plot's end. Yojimbo comes to mind as being the same thing.

The same is true of another of my Dokkodo influences: Usagi Yojimbo. Usagi, as shugyosha, is a wanderer. He wanders into a situation, fixes things, and wanders out.

What I need for Dokkodo is a way to easily generate Transmissions for many locations. One could argue that the need for multiple scenario generators in Dokkodo is no different than Technoir . That may be true, but my gut says it isn’t. What I’m thinking about is a set of node tables you could drop into a transmission based on geography, socio-economic situation, and the “personality” of the location.

So if I have three dials with three possible settings, thus:

  • Geography: Coastal, Mountainous, Plains;
  • Economic: Wealthy/Prosperous; Average/Growing, Poor/languishing;#
  • Ruler: Benevolent, Neglectful, Tyrannical.


27 possible combinations. That sounds like a lot of transmissions. But, there’s no reasons certain things can’t be repeated. For example, a festival as an Event could happen in any combination. It would be a prodigal celebration in a wealthy town, and tainted with desperation in the Poor village. So maybe a transmission generator?

Or perhaps, I’m trying to combine to things that need to be kept separate. What I’m addressing above is strictly setting information: Is the town ruled by a jerk, is it prospering, is it along the coast? Transmissions are scenario elements that carry setting color.

Hmm. Pondering this...

__________________________________________
* By which I mean "Koike and Kojima The RPG."
# I’m not solid on these

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Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:46 pm
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Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 10:01 am
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Post Re: Dokkōdō RPG
This is for a fictionalized Sagara han, ruled by the Tanuma Clan. That Saraga han was ruled by Tanuma clan at times is true, all of the other things implied below are complete fabrication.

Changes from Technoir
Connections are no longer necessarily known to the protagonists.
Factions, and Threats have been scaled down. Factions are small groups and Threats are individual people.

Connections
These are people who are disposed toward helping the PCs:
1. Capt. of the police
2. Hermit (Monk)
3. Pottery Warehouse boss
4. Retired General
5. Post-Station Master
6. Gunpowder maker

Events
1. Flood stops river traffic
2. Change of Daimyo
3. Festival
4. Sankin Kotai procession
5. Ikko-ikki (peasant revolt)
6. Wild Fire

Factions
1. Local Yakuza Gang
2. Sagara Magistrate and staff
3. Tanuma (local daimyo) retainers
4. Potter’s Guild
5. Floating World
6. Ronin thugs

Locations
1. Pottery Warehouse
2. Post-Station
3. Sagara magistrate HQ.
4. River bank
5. Shrine in the forest
6. Tanuma castle

Objects
1. Barrels of gunpowder
2. Seal of Tanuma clan
3. O-cha set of great value
4. Temple Bell
5. Heirloom sword set
6. Shoji with scandalous painting

Threats
These are people who are acting against the protagonists.
1. Ikeda Maritaka, ronin
2. Suemi Tomokata (Sagara Town magistrate)
3. Tanzo, Yakuza enforcer
4. Lady Mariko, Floating World matriarch
5. The local Shinto priest
6. Mizuno Norihiro, seneschal at Tanuma Castle

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Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:48 pm
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Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 10:01 am
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Location: East Tennessee
Post Re: Dokkōdō RPG
Based on a comment on another forum:
I believe I am poorly communicating my issue.

A
1. I like Transmissions from Technoir and want to use the basic idea in Dokkodo.
2. Assumption: Dokkodo will need more locations than Technoir. Reasoning: PCs in Dokkodo are traveling shogunate inspectors. Circuit riding FBI, if you will.
3. Conclusion: I need a variety of Transmissions for Dokkodo. (The Technoir book contains 3, with 2 at the website.)

B
1. Transmissions are made of 6 tables: Connections, Events, Locations, Factions, Objects, Threats
2. It shouldn't be too hard to come up with a transmission generator that keys off of certain location descriptors.
3. My current location descriptors are Geography, Socio-Economic, and Ruler type. If each descriptor category has 3 possible settings, there are 27 possible combinations.
4. 27 Locations should be plenty.
5. I need to make a transmission generator that will populate the 6 tables based on my location descriptors.

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Thu Mar 15, 2012 10:14 am
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