Single player suggestions

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otaku
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Single player suggestions

Hi all,

So I GMed Issue #1 from the starter kit last week with only one player. Rather than modify the encounters so a single player could survive I decided they got hit by a magic ray in the "big" encounter that turned them into 3 identical heroes. By doing this I was effectively making 3 heroes from 1 (3 actions per round and 3 pools of health) which gives them survivability with little or no extra work from me as the GM. The alternative would be to have 1 player control multiple PCs but I don't like the idea of 1 player controlling multiple PCs as each PC's pesonality (roleplaying) gets dilluted. 

So is there any other suggestions to deal with a single player without giving them multiple PCs to control?

The size of my playing group is normally 3 (including myself) so I think the starter kit modules as written with 2 players should be OK.

However, I would really like to play this with my son so that would be 1 GM and 1 player and so I wanted to know what options I would have to run the 6 issues in the starter kit as written with a single PC? I guess as GM I could control an NPC but not really a fan of that idea either. Another option is rather than 3 sepaerate yet identical characters, one character has speed so gets to act 2 or 3 times per round but then they only have limited health being a single PC so might be too fragile?

Cheers!

BTW - We had a blast when I ran it last week even though it was just the 2 of us. Loving this game so far!  

TakeWalker
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I've never honestly considered running an RPG one-on-one, but I guess if you were going to do it, SCRPG seems like the system to try it with? I mean, there's the whole "we're comic book writers" angle, so playing multiple characters isn't against the spirit of the game. If you're honest with your metagaming (as in, you can not do it), you might be able to play a single character and GM, while your player plays two. Kind of like two players and three heroes for the card game. :)

Phantom5613
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If you really want to play the starter kit one-on-one with a player, you could always avoid the confusion of that one player controlling three characters at once by just cutting down the number of enemies, or ajusting their difficulty by changing their die size. I mean, henchmen level enemies go down in one hit anyway, and lieutenants can always be lowered to be less threatening.

And I suppose for those really hectic fights, you can let the player go twice in one turn: 'phase one' to fight off enemies, then 'phase two' to deal with challenges and twists.

otaku
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Yes playing with 1 player is not ideal - I am trying to convince my wife and my youngest to play at least one session - fingers crossed. Otherwsie one player will have to do. Thanks for the added suggestions. After our Starfinder Campaign ends I would like to try this out with my normal group (2 players! - woot!) and given we start the new campaign next week, SCRPG might be delivered just at the right time :)

VGBM
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I sure hope there's a way to play with one player, there tends to be far more solo comics than crossover ones.

aramis
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VGBM wrote:

I sure hope there's a way to play with one player, there tends to be far more solo comics than crossover ones.

There's nothing inherent to SCRPG that precludes 1-PC play. The adventures need some rescaling... 

The biggest issue will be the stack-up of villains and environment is the issue I see - and  someone else suggested an extra turn vs environment. That's not a bad idea. 


Aramis

Selganor
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I ran the first two comics of the Starter Kit with two players (Legacy and Absolute Zero) and we noticed that they were hard pressed to "do the right thing" if they wanted to complete things.

Two characters can achieve things, but you don't really have time to do something else than the optimal action for the problem at large.

Once we also included another player (playing Unity) they suddenly were able to do other things than just the immediate problem and could also think about trying some other stuff without the fear that they just don't have the time to complete the problem at large.

Medic-Tank
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Would extending the scene tracker have helped breed more breathing room?

TalKaline
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It's not just the scene-tracker that's a problem. I run an ordinary ensemble game with 'mini' side-issues that generally focus on one hero's personal stories and struggles at a time - the biggest issue is that one new Twist each turn, when the hero only has one turn themselves, really cuts down the amount of time they have on the scene tracker even with needing less Overcome successes and fighting less enemies. I've tried giving one twist every other turn, but even that gets troublesome.

Phantom5613
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You could do what I said before, if it helps you out. give your player two turns during the round: One for fighting, the other for making overcomes.

Powerhound_2000
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I asked during the Q&A last Monday if there were rules to do a GM and player.  To which Christopher said the system can handle it.  https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/gtgames/sentinel-comics-the-roleplaying-game/comments?comment=UHJvamVjdENvbW1lbnQtMjMyNTExNTc%3D

He did not go into details how it would affect things but I’m guessing the Core Rulebook will make that clear. 


Crush your enemies, drive them before you, and laminate their women! - Guise, Prime Wardens #31

 
aramis
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Medic-Tank wrote:

Would extending the scene tracker have helped breed more breathing room?

Not much. It's down to action economy.

Every round, there are at least two not-a-PC actions... one is environment, one or more are NPCs.

PC's almost always start outnumbered. In a "typical" session with 4-6 players, one was always doing minion smashing with area effects (usually Bunker), one was always tacking what they could of the environment, and the rest focused upon solving the issue. 

The longer the scene, the more a single player is going to get beaten upon by the combats AND the environment.


Aramis

ErekLich
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I like the multiple turns thing, but I would generalize it even further, and simply say that you cannot take the same action type on both turns.