Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Game Night: Murderous Ghosts

Last night Patrick and I played Murderous Ghosts. The short version: it's amazing, really quite a remarkable, fun, scary and plain good game. We had time to play two games, so both got to play as MC and urban explorer.

Some thoughts:
  • It works really well as a role-playing game for two people. The playbooks are helpful and not intrusive - it provides you with steering but leaves things up to the imagination of the people playing - and prompts the MC to be as scary as possible.
  • Playbooks are really good: each person has their own "choose-your-own-adventure" book.
  • The general set up is just great: the MC is the abandoned place and the ghosts, and the other player is an urban explorer who has lost their way. Each moves according to what their place in the playbook says.
  • Randomness is in the form of each player drawing cards from a regular deck. The mechanism is somewhere between blackjack and the Apocalypse World under-7/7-9/10+ dice-rolling. It really works. It's a little tactical: if you ace one situation, you will not succeed as well on the next one (statistically).
  • It didn't matter that we died (on both occasions). The horror and scares were really satisfying. Dying felt inevitable, surviving was great while it lasted.
Also: Patrick is good at weird scary stuff. My character found himself in an abandoned and haunted animal testing lab. The next forty minutes were terrifying.

Final Thoughts: I wonder how the blackjack/AW mechanic would work in other settings... And I wonder how simple it would be to fashion a "haunted house" game from the basic structure, i.e., a game for more than two players...

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