1. You left out most of the the fine Pietro/Albertus one-upsman dialog (of which I remember):
    P: “Machine! Controlling! Mind! Forcing me … Leo, look out!”
    A: “Don’t worry, Your Highness – I’ll protect you from this weak-minded fool.”
    P: “You dolt – can’t you even disintegrate a bullet to protect Leo?”
    P: “By all that’s holy — the love I bear Leo has allowed me to break free of this infernal machine!”
    A: (Musing aloud) “Hmmmm – has he really broken free, or might he still be a danger to Leo?”
    Or words to those effects. 🙂
    (NB – Your subscribe setup is a little bit wonky — just clicking on the Subscribe box demands putting in an e-mail address in the lower subscribe field, which it shouldn’t; it also clears out the personal info afterwards, which it shouldn’t.)

  2. There was a little bit of a disconnect when Albertus turned on Pietro (especially for a couple players who’d voiced a desire to play in a ‘cooperative mode’), mostly because I hadn’t TALKED about that option or really discussed a Social Contract with everyone, but I think I’ll start off with that next session.

    As one of the “cooperative mode” crewe …
    It didn’t bother me all *that* much. I’m not sure why, unless it’s because I don’t feel I need to get nasty in retaliation. Pietro doesn’t yet realize that Albertus is trying to get rid of a rival, and even with the (now) competing Keys of the Manipulator, for Pietro it’s no more than being a Great Buddy Who Always Has A Fine Suggestion For Something Fun To Do. I.e., Pietro’s behavior doesn’t have to get nasty or mean (or “manipulative” in a bad way) in order to respond.
    Yet. 🙂
    Now, if our ability to actually do what needs doing gets impaired, then it’s a scosh more problematic, But we can chat about that next time we get together.

  3. I think one of the reasons that the subterfuge on Albertus’s part didn’t get too much of a problem is because it’s out there in front of the group, so it’s just the characters keeping secrets, not the players.

  4. True. And, interestingly, via the contribution of chips, the players are able to mellow (or exacerbate) the conflict, or keep it on a dramatic (or comedic) even keel. “Fan mail” indeed.

  5. It really is quite a lot like fanmail, albeit one with a personal pool to spend from, rather than PTAs communal one.
    The only thing that somewhat concerns me is that the game makes an assumption of a smaller group, and there’s an outside chance that having six people with six Gift Dice each can really make a conflict easy.
    Then again… if that’s what people want to spend it on, so be it.
    And, that said, with more people to eat up the gift dice… maybe it balances. Will be interesting to see.

  6. The game assumes a smaller group than 5 players (+ SM)?
    Actually, I was fairly impressed that by the end of the session, we’d spent nearly all of our chips, but through the final conflict. That struck me as remarkably healthy and involved in the game.

  7. Yeah, you’re DEFINITELY right about that.
    And honestly, I could be wrong about the whole gift dice thing — one nice thing about that mechanic combined with the dice system is that even if everyone at the table dumps all their dice on one person’s roll, there’s only so far they can get with that result — it’s still not an “I Win” button on a tough conflict.
    Really really interesting game, mechanically speaking.

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