The tension from this strategy comes more from the how than the if. When Tana attacks the ogre, will it be via her magic (which must go awry, because she needs a complication to flip that card back), or will she swing a sword (and get hurt, or lose the sword, via taking Condition cards), or will she be swatted away (and thus help Emory flip back his Guardian card)? That choice will affect every other action in the encounter
During playtest, players would often use up their "good" cards early on, then find themselves trying alternate strategies or looking at problems from new angles to use their remaining cards. To me this is good - it's a form of randomness, not in "does this work" but "HOW does this work".
And if you absolutely don't want to know ahead of time if an action should succeed, there's a stack of success/failure cards to draw from. I won't judge
Beyond that, pushing against Condition cards you've taken pose their own challenges. So the state of your cards represents a history that affects your ability to succeed in the now. And that history can be very random - it's made of all the decisions you made until now.
Of course, you can always succeed with a flipped card if you activate its downside, bringing a plot complication into play. But as players, that's what we want.
Most (but not all) dice systems don't encode history. Rolling a success now is no more or less likely because you rolled a failure then.
When you flip a character card, it stays flipped until you take action to flip it back. Until then, you can't use it to succeed at challenges. And you may encounter challenges where that card is the only safe way to proceed.
I want to talk about using randomizers in TTRPGs, and why I went diceless with #ConstellationCards
One reason people play games is to engage in exciting actions. It's often exciting not to know how an action will turn out. Risk builds excitement, and randomness with consequences for failure introduces risk. So "roll dice to find out" is an easy tool to indirectly add tension.
Today's #ConstellationCards encounter draw: Amazement, Portentious, Diabolical
The Devil Prophet has come to the village where the PCs are staying. This emissary of Hell shares the dark secrets of the citizens, while warning of Hell's plans to invade other lands. Curiously, the Prophet seems happier when a citizen owns up to their failings, and seems regretful about their dire tidings. What is their real motive?
Today's #ConstellationCards PC draw: Insular, Synthesist, Training
You grew up in as a reclusive scholar in a religious commune, studying ethics, natural philosophy, psychology, and medicine in order to understand the world the creator made. Now you are on a pilgrimage, healing whoever you encounter. You may not return home until you can answer the question of the pilgrimage: "why is there evil in the creator's world?"
Encounter cards, including the "Vigilance" card in the process of being flipped. The card flip animation is simple but it's a really nice touch.
Three cards showing a randomly drawn character. You can create characters in seconds, or manually pick the cards you like.
The list of all cards, organized by stack. Click the icon to draw a random card, or unfold the stack to pick a specific card
I’ve been working on a #ConstellationCards VTT for awhile, and a very early version of it is up and running. Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be testing the UI and posting screenshots (or asking for testers)
Today's #ConstellationCards encounter draw: Terror, Armored, Monstrous
The Great Beast is rampaging across the landscape. It's too tough to challenge in conventional combat - its scales turn away arrows and blades. But maybe it can be lured elsewhere - or maybe its rage is the product of a pain that can be assuaged? Either way, nobody else seems brave enough to try dealing with it.
Today's #ConstellationCards PC draw: Cosmopolitan, Guardian, Tech
You invented a gadget that might change the world - and now you've got to keep it out of the hands of unscrupulous people from back home. You've left your city behind to find the quietest backwater you can, only trouble seems to keep finding you...
Found an old character sheet for a robot PC, where I took a shot at alternatives to Asimov’s Three Laws. D7’s directives were:
1. Preserve life
2. Preserve civilization
3. Preserve truth
4. Preserve harmony
5. Preserve yourself
There was a reason for each, and a reason for their order, and in play it worked pretty well as a moral code
It’s almost the end of the month, and the Autism Acceptance Month bundle is ending tomorrow! Last chance to support autistic creatives in the only ways that matter (listening to them and giving them money directly) and get a bunch of games and goodies!