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HP in Genesys - Talents

These are some quick ideas about Talents for Harry Potter characters.

The first are Rank 1 Talents for characters by house, expanding their Career Skills.
Gryffindor Rank 1 - Gryffindor Student: Cool becomes a Career Skill for you.
Hufflepuff Rank 1 - Hufflepuff Student: Survival becomes a Career Skill for you.
Ravenclaw Rank 1 - Ravenclaw Student - Perception becomes a Career Skill for you.
Slytherin Rank 1 - Slytherin Student - Skulduggery becomes a Career Skill for you.
Recent posts

Describing difficulty to players

Describing difficulty to players

Some RPG games have player mechanisms that affect success.
In D&D there's Inspiration, Advantage and a number of race/class abilities that can affect rolls.
In Numenera and all the other MCG games you can spend from your Ability Pools to affect success.
In Star Trek Adventures you can spend Momentum, use Talents, use Foci, etc.

Some games like Apocalypse World tell the players exactly what they need to succeed: 7-9, 10+, etc. But for these other games you need to know what your target for success is to play the game in the best way possible- which to me, means have fun, feel like you have knowledge and agency in game).

Explaining the rules to players is a part of the job for anyone inviting others to play a game. You can tell them to read the book, recommend they check out an article, or do anything beforehand, but at the time the game is taking place, if you want to run the game, you have to help players engage with the rules, including explai…

HP in Genesys - Careers

Careers are an important way of defining core skills for a character type. Since all the HP characters are Hogwarts students, I tried to frame Careers like cliques, describing how the character expresses themselves and their motivation at school.

The Careers I decided upon are Athletic, Mischievious, Popular and Studious. Everyone gets Arcana as a Career skill, because a HP game is going to rely upon using magic.
Athletic Athletics
Discipline
Coordination
Perception
Piloting (as Riding(Broom))
Resilience
Brawl
Leadership
Mischevious Alchemy (as Potions)
Coordination
Skulduggery
Stealth
Streetwise
Arcana
Deception
Negotiation
Popular Cool
Vigilance
Arcana
Charm
Coercion
Deception
Leadership
Negotiation
Studious Alchemy (as Potions)
Discipline
Mechanics
Medicine
Vigilance
Arcana
Knowledge(Magical)
Knowledge(Magical Creatures)

HP in Genesys - Skills

Getting into Careers reminded me that Genesys Skills need some updating for Harry Potter!

The basic skills in the game include:
General Skills Alchemy --> Potions
Astrocartography (removed)
Athletics
Conputers (Muggle skill)
Cool
Coordination
Discipline
Driving (Muggle skill)
Mechanics
Medicine
Operating
Perception
Piloting --> Flying(Broom)
Resilience
Riding --> Riding(Animal)
Skulduggery
Stealth
Streetwise
Survival
Vigilance
Magic Skills Arcana
Divine (removed)
Primal (removed)
Combat Brawl
Gunnery
Melee
Ranged
Social Charm
Coercion
Deception
Leadership
Negotiation
Knowledge Knowledge -->
Knowledge(Muggle)Knowledge(Magical)Knowledge(Dark Arts)Knowledge(Magical Creatures)
This is a very general mapping of skills. At this point there's no need for heavy redesign but some of the skills have little use in Harry Potter. Others, like Divine and Primal don't reflect the world that we've seen so far through the stories.

In terms of Arcana, I think that the Augment …

HP in Genesys - Archetypes

I like Harry Potter. It's something I can share with my whole family, because everyone is a fan, so it's a constant interest of mine to see Harry Potter and the Hogwarts world in RPG systems.
Genesys seems like a very good candidate for this. It has a very open magic system that seems like it would work well with HP.
Something I enjoy about the idea of Genesys is the narrative dice system. My goal in creating an HP game is to have a co-GM game where my wife and I can play without feeling the burden of creating stories rests on either of us.
I'm also happy that Genesys uses incremental (non-level) character gains. It seems to me like it fits the HP model well.

So running down character creation step by step in Genesys, first you need a Background for your character. This is more descriptive than statistical. You answer questions about your character's life and upbringing pre-game.

In my HP example, I want to start with Year 1 Hogwarts students, so the Background would c…

Using Backgrounds to Populate a Campaign

As an idea for starting or fleshing out a campaign, consider using the characters' backgrounds to help you determine the important people and places of your starting campaign setting. Backgrounds are a great tool for describing how characters relate to the game setting, so lean into it and use them to make your initial location matter to your players.

Start your game prep with getting your players together and having them make characters. This can be done in person, which is a terrific way to see how people work together and get them comfortable collaborating on story ideas, or online using something like a shared chat. In this example, the key element of the characters will be the Backgrounds.

When you're talking over backgrounds with your players, think about how likely they are to be useful in the game. If your game is a one-shot or short campaign, make sure the background will see some use! In a city or town game the Outlander's background feature may not see a lot …

Back to Work

I haven't posted anything in a while!

It's been a busy time. Day job work has been more intense and I've done less direct game design and more game running. I've also had the very pleasant opportunity to play Dungeons & Dragons on a schedule that works for me via play-by-post!

So all in all, while there's been a change here, things are continuing like normal.

But I wasn't posting here, and sharing my game ideas has always been an outlet for me, even if no one reads or comments on them. I like to keep myself accountable for designing and adding to the conversation on games.

I've read a lot of fantastic blogs lately including work by Rob Donaghue of Fate and a developer on Pathfinder who also is making an RPG called Delve.
I've been reading about representation, diversity and how to keep your gaming group strong and feeling like their ideas are included in the game.
I've been playing more, and trying to give the lead away to the players more.


I…