I’ve recently completed a first cut of rules and playbooks for an Apocalypse World hack and I’m starting the process of play testing it. The game embraces a wide cut of vampire mythology; but, it’s also derived from White Wolf’s Vampire. Call it homage.
What I’m calling “the downward spiral,” the theme of a vampire struggling against two competing identities: vampire and human, is at the core of this game. The game’s mechanics seek to emphasize the downward spiral in play through a set of interrelated moves (moves are the interface between the system and the fiction – check out Apocalypse World) that manipulate the character’s stats. These stats, Humanity and Will, sum to zero so, as one is driven upward the other is driven downward. Humanity represents the character’s connection to people/being a person. Will represents the character’s connection to being a vampire. The moves that allow the character to interact with people use Humanity as the base stat and the moves that allow the character to do the crazy, cinematic, vampire stuff run off Will. So, the choices you make for your character in play, the actions that make your character more or less in tune with humanity, modify the stats that represent your character’s connection to humanity, which in turn affect the probability of successful outcome of moves related to being a person or being a vampire. That’s the idea.
I ran one play test before Christmas with a couple of friends of mine from out of town. We had a great time playing it and the guys gave me a bunch of great feedback. I’ve incorporated that feedback into what is now the alpha play test draft.