Sunday 25 December 2011

Fiasco with Adults

Had my first game of Fiasco with adults - my relatives. None of them are role-players, but they're all actors (I'm the odd one out there) and they're quite spontaneous.

The characterizations were hilarious, especially from my sister-in-law (a professional actress), and for family at least, unexpected risque: webcams hidden in tanning beds and the resulting porn was a central element.

The setup was a little confusing to them, mechanically, and there was a lot of uncertainty about what it all meant, but it was neat to see people starting to get inspired and leaning forward as the details started to click together.

In hindsight, we could have gone over some conventions of the genre, as we shied away from the outrageous and produced a sort of soap opera. Both in terms of pacing and general content, it felt a bit like Twin Peaks without the surrealism. Our characters were far too sensible!

A number of scenes focused on trying to get others to agree to do something, rather than plunging forward with screwball schemes (getting promises for goods rather than breaking in and taking them ourselves). As a result, 'bad result' resolutions didn't move the story enough ("he says no") rather than snowball the fiasco ("he catches you in the act"). A couple of scenes were spent essentially revisiting conflicts ("Hey, why haven't you done that thing you said you'd do yet?"). This really put the brakes on the central Need, as even modest plot advances were undone.

By the time I twigged to this we were well into act two, and it was revealed to all when we got the aftermath results which were way more brutal than the tone we'd set. (The worst that had happened to a character in play was being charged with a crime.)

We were exhausted and out of ideas by the very end, but the aftermath montage was really fun, perhaps because it was so clear just how much license we all had to set scenes (decades later). We went die by die and I found it once again unexpectedly poignant. My character's last die was a white one, where I got to move back to the town decades later to find that nobody remembered me (some victory!)

Can't wait to play again!

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