Last night I played an Apocalypse World hack called Urban Shadow. It’s a great game in line with Dresden Files and Angel. Keep an eye on it if you’re looking for something to play in the Urban Fantasy Horror genre. This was the first time I played AW or a hack of it (if you don’t count Dungeon World) and it was interesting in that just because everyone at the table was a PC that didn’t mean we were on good terms with each other. There were three players (myself included) and I played the Vampire. They had premade histories with the other PCs and I ended up feeding off of one guy when he was weak and I was hungry, and the other guy had hired me to help kill someone. When we got to the first time we interacted and nothing was trying to kill us, it got intense. We were trying to figure out how to deal with the BBEG and pretty soon our histories got brought up and next thing I know I have two guns pointed at me (which was annoying). It was really the first time I played a game where the PCs are not 100% trusting of each other. It was weird, but it was also a lot of fun.
I’m going to keep digging more into AW and its hacks because it looks like these types of games are just as much about socializing with the people as it is killing things and figuring out mysteries. Most of the games I play/run right now everyone gets alone and there is no worry about back stabbing or selfish goals. One of my games has a lot of young players and that is a fine way to play, but I think for my older group I’m going to start setting them against each other. I’ll have to try some things to get them to distrust each other and maybe give them some other objectives other than “Kill the BBEG and reclaim your home”.
This sounds like something I’m going to have to discuss with my players, and I would encouraged you to talk to your group about adding inter party squabbles. Just adding inter party conflicts without out of game discussion would probably end in disaster.
Thanks for reading. What was some of your favorite inter party conflicts that didn’t grind the game to a halt or end the campaign?