Yesterday, I came across this post from Daniel Solis that got my wheels turning. Let me give you the salient bit:
This range is drawn from a pair of d6 dice results, ranging from 2-12. 2 is the most complications, 12 is the fewest complications. The most common result is 6 or 7, which represent just a few complications.
Here’s the trick: You actually roll three dice on your turn. After rolling, you choose which two dice to keep as your official results. Then you pass the third dice result to the next player for their turn.
He then rolls two dice and now has to choose among the three results: Those two he just rolled and the one result you gave him. If he takes your result, you earn a point. If he doesn’t take your result, it passes to the next player, and so on until someone takes it or it comes back around to you. If it comes back to you, you lose one point.
This mechanic immediately caught my attention, and with Daniel’s permission, I began to noodle over what could be done with it. I started to think of situations in which it coul;d be useful to pass potential complications on to your opponents/allies. The first thing that came to mind was countries. Countries are always vying against one another, and wouldn’t it be fun to get to roleplay an entire country?
Well, that was the end of my thinking. I started typing.
I came up with a quick draft of a game that mashes up Daniel’s dice mechanic, Aspects from Fate, the initiative system from Marvel Heroic, the character creation from Spirit of the Century, and the narrative gameplay of of Fiasco. I called it A Verbis Ad Verbera, which is Latin for “A Word and a Blow.” I thought that accurately summed up how countries often interact, as well as being a neat little reference to Romeo & Juliet.
I’ve not playtested this at all, I’ve not checked the rules for consistency, and I’ve not worked to make things clear. There are bits missing, but I think there’s something good here. Check it out, give me some feedback, and we’ll see where this goes. I may be able to polish this up while I’m working on TerrorForm and make it into something more substantial.