Our goal, from the beginning, has been to make an excellent character driven game with the best tech from the role-playing games and story games modern design trends. As the system starts to become stable enough for public review and testing – we distilled an Ashcan version to be used for playtesting and peer review purposes.
The system design stems from the idea of combining the superb story mechanics of the Powered by the Apocalypse games and their predecessor Dogs in the Vineyard with the character driven nature of my earlier VEIL themed role-playing games.
VEIL games used a tech closely resembling Over the Edge, where you describe the what the characters can or can not do with simple background and specialty Traits. Each Trait telling who and what the character is. Without any stats or numbers, but still with enough mechanics to resolve any conflicts the Characters met. The system worked excellently for games focused on character immersion and the stories driven by Character related premises.
What the system lacked was a way to drive a real mystery or horror plot without an expert storyteller. And this is what the Powered by the Apocalypse movement excelled.
Our design decouples the Story Tech introduced by the Apocalypse World from the Player Moves, enabling character driven conflict resolution. We have reinserted the Tech to the system with Game Master Moves triggered by challenges and clues the Characters encounter. The approach lets us have all the story driving power of Powered by the Apocalypse games in a more free form Character focused role-playing game.
The Ashcan released contains the base System and two Examples of Extended Player Moves. The Quick will provide a polished version of the System, and Extended Moves for Nordic Noir Ghost Story scenarios. Including Moves for Violence, Closing Echoes and Dealing with the Dead.
To see how it all works out, and how the Engine runs – just grab the Ashcan linked above!