Friday, March 12, 2010

Dogs In Shepherd's Rest Part 2

We wrapped up our Dogs in the Vineyard game, and it went pretty well. The players identified what they believed to be the root causes of the problems in Shepherd's Rest and came up with a solution that didn't involve shooting anyone in the head... maybe next time.

The short version is that while questioning one of the townsfolk about something completely different, one of the dogs uncovered an illicit affair between the two single women of the town. The dogs' solution was to quickly marry off both women to the two eligible men of the town. They had actually joked about this affair existing earlier in the game, but it was apparently a bit of a surprise when they found out it actually existed.

It was interesting to see how the group suddenly reversed their own successes from earlier in the game in establishing their chosen solution. The group had been focused on matching the younger woman with the younger man and convincing the older suitor to go after the available widow instead, and had run several conflicts in an attempt to further that goal. When it became apparent that the younger woman was actually the instigator in the illicit affair, they decided it would be better if she was married to the older man after all as he would be able to exercise firmer control over her (remember folks, this game is set in a fictional 19th Century Utah, and the players were playing characters that have bought in to the morality of the setting).

After arranging the marriages, the dogs then left Shepherd's Rest confident that they had set things to rights. Too bad they only discovered one of the two illicit affairs going on in the town...

We had a shorter session this time as there was a meeting of the NWARPG prior to the session, and so I decided to let the group implement their chosen solution without further conflict resolution. After the session was over, I probably got a bit too chatty about the affair they missed and some other details of the motivations of the NPCs, but I usually can't help myself from revealing those kinds of details after a game is over. In the future I'll try to restrain myself more, at least delaying the reveal so that the players can dwell on their own resolution for a few days first.

Overall, an enjoyable and satisfying session, and it's highly likely that we'll be returning to this game after trying out some others. I'll also probably get to try it as a player at some point as Liz has expressed interest in running a town either for RPG Night or for a NWARPG Game Day.

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