Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013
Players: Ben, Marc, Sev
We played a bit of Durance. Ended up on a water world with a non-breathable atmosphere (New Kolyaa) and strict military colony (Burke's Town). The two didn't... quite... mesh, but we made it work. Our drive was Indulgence. Whatever that means.
Ben played our Governor and a Bolter (who was kind of like a pirate captain). Sev was our Lag and our Judge Advocate. And I played a Marine Lieutenant and The Abbot. We had some wacky adventures including failing to smuggle supplies, selling escaped prisoners into slavery in order to prevent starving, impeaching the Governor for indecent conduct, and forcing a man's widow to execute her husband's killer. Just a typical day on New Kolyaa!
Pros of Durance: I really liked the flavor of the game. It's a rough-and-tumble prison... or not. The players bring what they want, but the base level "here's the hierarchy" stuff keeps the setting locked to some degree. I also enjoy looking at all the permutations of different planets and colonies. Having a pre-set list of characters helps a ton in rapidly developing the colony. I liked the oaths a lot. The scene-setting mechanic of asking a question was cool, but not without flaws.
Cons of Durance: Would have much preferred to come up with our own planet, or use the pre-built planet but generate a colony that we felt matched it better. Some confusion in the rules about what happens when a character breaks their oath and what to do with the vacuum that comes from moving characters. The question you ask is really crucial to having a good scene play out, so asking a poor question makes the game stumble. Sometimes oaths don't fit the characters: you need to choose oaths very carefully in order to have a successful game.
I enjoyed Durance. I'll play it again. But I can see a few problems that I'm not sure will go away with more plays.
Thanks to Ben for facilitating and Sev for being awesome.
Edited by Marc on Jan 14, 2013 7:12 PM