I don't like quoting from the rulebook but the next couple of post set the framework for how DW plays.
Playing Dungeon World means having a conversation; somebody says something, then you reply, maybe someone else chimes in. We talk about the fiction—the world of the characters and the things that happen around them. As we play, the rules will chime in, too. They have something to say about the world. There are no turns or rounds in Dungeon World, no rules to say whose turn it is to talk. Instead players take turns in the natural flow of the conversation, which always has some back-and-forth. The GM says something, the players respond. The players ask questions or make statements, the GM tells them what happens next. Dungeon World is never a monologue; it’s always a conversation.
The rules help shape the conversation of play. While the GM and the players are talking, the rules and the fiction are talking, too. Every rule has an explicit fictional trigger that tells you when it is meant to come into the conversation.
Like any conversation, the time you spend listening is just as important as the time you spend talking. The details established by the other people at the table (the GM and the other players) are important to you: they might change what moves you can make, set up an opportunity for you, or create a challenge you have to face. The conversation works best when we all listen, ask questions, and build on each other’s contributions.
Last Edit: May 11, 2013 12:12:43 GMT -6 by akooser
Both Players and MC (errr DM) have explicit rules to follow.
Player Rules Moves are rules that tell you when they trigger and what effect they have. A move depends on a fictional action and always has some fictional effect. “Fictional” means that the action and effect come from the world of the characters we’re describing. In the move above the trigger is “when you attack an enemy in melee.” The effect is what follows: a roll to be made and differing fictional effects based on the outcome of the roll.
A character can’t take the fictional action that triggers a move without that move occurring. For example, if Isaac tells the GM that his character dashes past a crazed axe-wielding orc to the open door, he makes the defy danger move because its trigger is “when you act despite an imminent threat.” Isaac can’t just describe his character running past the orc without making the defy danger move and he can’t make the defy danger move without acting despite an imminent threat or suffering a calamity. The moves and the fiction go hand-in-hand.
Last Edit: May 11, 2013 12:18:13 GMT -6 by akooser
• Describe the situation • Follow the rules • Make moves • Exploit your prep
• Portray a fantastic world • Fill the characters’ lives with adventure • Play to find out what happens
• Draw maps, leave blanks • Address the characters, not the players • Embrace the fantastic • Make a move that follows • Never speak the name of your move • Give every monster life • Name every person • Ask questions and use the answers • Be a fan of the characters • Think dangerous • Begin and end with the fiction • Think offscreen, too
MC Moves (but never say your move) • Use a monster, danger, or location move • Reveal an unwelcome truth • Show signs of an approaching threat • Deal damage • Use up their resources • Turn their move back on them • Separate them • Give an opportunity that fits a class’ abilities • Show a downside to their class, race, or equipment • Offer an opportunity, with or without cost • Put someone in a spot • Tell them the requirements or consequences and ask
Last Edit: May 11, 2013 12:22:38 GMT -6 by akooser
I think I understand. It sounds at first like Rulings, not Rules turned on its head. But the real point, it seems to me, is this: Whereas in OD&D you immerse yourself in a character, and roll to use every resource available to your character in order to triumph, in DW you take a step back and think of yourself as a co-author of a story, and roll to effect cinematic outcomes. In OD&D, you don’t worry about story as you play — yet a great yarn can emerge in the session recap. In DW, you DO worry about story as you play. But at least, unlike classic narrativism, the GM doesn’t have a story pre-written (railroad).
I feel like sort of a jerk because I wanted to dislike this Dungeon World, for common and boring reasons, but it looks from the linked video like you were having a lot of fun, and besides the specific rules, it looked a lot like D&D to me. Have an exalt for being a brave diplomat on an old-school board.
I think the big thing that both traditional D&D of the OS style and DW do is the narrative. Traditional D&D is much more about the players describing the characters actions than rolling a dice to see if it works. DW does this too, just chat what you are doing and only roll when what you describe has a chance of failure. I was going to play DW with my boys but ended up going S&W as I just feel more comfortable with trad D&D rules (whatever edition it is all I have known) but DW is sure on my radar for later, esp if S&W doesn't gel with my kids!
Post by Ynas Midgard on May 13, 2013 8:19:22 GMT -6
Another important difference (although not as emphasised as in Apocalypse World) is that the characters do not exist in a vacuum: not only the world reacts to them but they react to each other (hence the Bond rules).
Traditional D&D does not care about that. PCs go on adventures together - and that's it.
From over at storygames someone smarter then me talks about the difference between DW and D&D
" I think the most important part is to embrace the intended relationship between D&D and DW.
Arguably, one thing that D&D is is a set of methods for creating play. - There's the 4E method of creating interesting set piece fights with interesting terrain and all that. - There's the sandbox method of creating a world around the characters that they can freely explore. (Western Marches style games) - There's the story module method of guiding players through a set of encounters that follow a pregenerated plotline. (The linked module sets that started, I think, in the early 90s, but don't quote me on that) - There's the character progression of following the characters through a development path toward greatness (Adventurer, Conqueror, King style) - There's the dungeon-as-gauntlet method of challenging the players directly and treating the characters as pawns. - And there are probably others I haven't mentioned. (And please don't knit-pick the hell out of the list. I'm not trying to do perfect-to-the-word with gamer history analysis here.)
A thing that people have done for a long time is to play using one of those methods, but using a different ruleset. I ran a sandbox style game using early D&D modules converted to a Savage Worlds hack, for example. That's "Playing D&D, but using different rules".
Playing DW isn't that.
DW is a different method of play. It's it's own thing.
When you are playing DW, D&D provides CONTEXT to play, not METHOD.
I would say that the biggest thing to focus on when looking at DW is to look at all the places where decisions are made at the table, not before you get to the table. Look for the subtle ways the game encourages co-authoring between the GM and the players. Some of the fundamental things that drive the method of play in DW that are:
Play to find out what happens - Plan a little, but don't overplan. And in particular, don't plan outcomes. Don't even plan events beyond starting events. Just plan some people and places that might be fun to use, and then use them when you need something cool.
Draw maps, leave blanks - Again, prep a little, but don't try to fill it all in. Fill in some of it on the fly, based on what the players are doing, saying, being.
Ask questions and use the answers - Not just "don't overprep" but also "don't overproduce". Let the players produce answers too, and then use them.
Dungeon World in a nutshell (and how my kids were able to grok it quickly):
1. Choose something you want to do 2. Choose a move or select an ability score that applies 3. roll 2d6 and add the ability score modifier (loosely equivalent to d20) 4. 10+ you succeed, 7-9 you succeed with a complication, 6- you fail but get an experience point.
With another family, we have taken our girls through the classic U series and we are now on U3 The Final Enemy.
Is there a trick to the download? I followed the link but it took me to a place that didn't look like a PDF.
Marv / Finarvyn DCC playtester (2011) S&W WhiteBox author (2009) C&C playtester (2003) Builder of the TrollBridge for T&T; Amber Diceless player since 1993 OD&D Player since 1975; Metamorphosis Alpha since 1976
"Don't ask me what you need to hit. Just roll the die and I will let you know!" - Dave Arneson