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  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by RunningHill View Post
    "It's the combination of some pictures and to some extent text as well which have been questioned. It's mainly been concern from a US perspective. It's not only law, it's also what the market wants to do and not - which we are not in control of to 100%, and finding that common ground has been a struggle. The final outcome of those discussions we think is fair, i.e. that we only need to edit a few items for the Black Madonna and Taroticum & Other Tales to adept to the wider market."

    Just don't blame the swedes :-)
    I actually think the developers of Kult is doing it on purpose, and I'm fine with it.
    Kult, just like Hellraiser, is a game that revels in obscenity. It's obscenity as horror. ...but in the US, it's illegal to be obscene - it's one of the few exceptions to their freedom of speech - and so I think the devs actually secretly counted on being revised before release. You don't need to look further than the front cover featuring full frontal nudity.
    ...but I think Wastelands was so much worse than Kult could ever be. I've seen it turn players into real world gang rapists and psychopaths first hand, while other friends (who were the ones talking back) had no clue why Didi & Björn were attacking their silly Star Wars campaigns.

  2. #12
    As I said I'm a swede and we go with facts. You can believe what you want but it does take away the credibility of your statements. If the developer says it's because of their distributer who wants a wider market and you still think it's the developer who do it on purpose...

    Wasteland was more or less Mad Max rpg and not even in the same league as Kult. I very much doubt that it turned anyone into rapist or psychopath.

    Besides Didi and Björns book De övergivnas arme was just a bunch of crap written by authors who know nothing about roleplaying games at all and full of errors.

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by RunningHill View Post
    As I said I'm a swede and we go with facts. You can believe what you want but it does take away the credibility of your statements. If the developer says it's because of their distributer who wants a wider market and you still think it's the developer who do it on purpose...
    Bad publicity is good publicity. It's their core theme. Basically the way that you become enlightened in Kult, is by subjecting yourself to various obscenities. They're thought of as "the truth". Lovecraft did the same thing: He dreamt up the atheistic obscenities of his era, and turned it into monsters.

    Wasteland was more or less Mad Max rpg and not even in the same league as Kult. I very much doubt that it turned anyone into rapist or psychopath.
    I guess it depends on how you play it, but the completely lawless setting makes it so that in order to survive, you generally have to be a psychopath. The adventures will teach you the meta-skillset of a psychopath, and how to think like a psychopath, and your real world roleplaying group will also be joined by psychopaths who are looking to fit in, so now you're suddenly gaming with bank robbers and rapists. ...but it's not just a matter of being brainwashed into associating psychopathic strategies with solutions, but also that the psychopaths will actually utilize the game sessions as real world training and education, just like Didi & Björn stated.

    Besides Didi and Björns book De övergivnas arme was just a bunch of crap written by authors who know nothing about roleplaying games at all and full of errors.
    I never read more than quotes from it, but looking back on how my friends were twisted into a criminal gang, those two had a good point. Their mistake was attacking ALL roleplaying games, though. They were far from the experts that they wanted to be.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by MooCow View Post
    As for Kult, I like the setting, but I don't think Kult is that well-made in a very cruicial regard: It's an extremely slow burn. The setting is literally behind a veil, of which the players know nothing, and the GM knows everything. This means that from the GM's perspective, the setting is so cool, because to him it's all monsters waging war on eachother, and there's magical spells and other fantastical stuff, but to the players, it's mostly going to be human organisations being corrupt and criminal, with the occational spooky stuff. A 500 lbs monster can literally walk up to you and speak with you, and you'll just percieve it as a human that might perhaps look a little strange at most.

    ...and this isn't exciting. I'm right now listening to a podcast of The Black Madonna campaign. I'm 12 hours in, which is only a third of the way in, and so far the little the players have encountered of "The Truth" is mundane: [spoiler]Bad dreams, worms, black magic rituals, and a few giant insects.[/spoiler] The rest is just criminal activity, resolved by the usual burglary that I both hate and am sick of.

    It has great roleplaying and GMing - it's just the setting that sucks.
    Have you played it? I never played it myself but have had the rules. But then I was young it was not anything I could wrap my head around to GM. I know it's popular amongst people because of the setting but don't know how many actually played it.

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by RunningHill View Post
    Have you played it? I never played it myself but have had the rules. But then I was young it was not anything I could wrap my head around to GM. I know it's popular amongst people because of the setting but don't know how many actually played it.
    I GMed it for a couple of years, but I was just a cringy GM. It was cringy because I GMed it according to the book. The book had automatic weapons, it allowed the players to acquire them via criminal means, and so suddenly everyone had automatic weapons. They were all a bunch of munchkins, playing a bunch of clones of the best possible character they had conspired up, trying to power play things, and the little atmosphere that I could come up with, was so horrible that they laughed in my face.

    I think that basically the heavy setting should just be thought of as inspiration. The newest edition claims to focus more on personality traits than combat, which I wish it would have done when I was around. ...but at that time, Kult was just a horror version of a Swedish Warhammer clone called Mutant Chronicles.
    Anyway, focus on what would make the best Hellraiser horror, and that's it. That's all you need to know about grasping the setting. The players aren't going to call you out on any inconsistencies in a world where basically anything can be made possible with the aid of The Truth, and where the players know next to nothing.

  6. #16

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    I've run a couple successful games with earlier editions. The first time I was a player three of us had really great in-theme sort of characters and a guy came along and built rambo. It really elf'd up the game. Sadly it was at a local gaming store and it was an anyone can play demo of the game so there wasn't much anyone could do about it. We did get together another day and restarted without Rambo and the game went much better. I was playing a goth horror writer who had become successful from writings based on dreams (that were actually a dream mage torturing me with fragments of the Truth) and was a bit imbalanced to start. The other players were a priest that had lost his faith and become an overly tattooed bartender in a goth club, and a college kid who hung out at the goth club but secretly had red hair (under all his goth black) and something about him and his lineage was important but we never knew what. We had all read the books to round robin GMing so the characters we made were probably the coolest I've ever played with in a horror game. Plus the players were really great too, that always helps.

  7. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by esmdev View Post
    I've run a couple successful games with earlier editions. The first time I was a player three of us had really great in-theme sort of characters and a guy came along and built rambo. It really elf'd up the game. Sadly it was at a local gaming store and it was an anyone can play demo of the game so there wasn't much anyone could do about it. We did get together another day and restarted without Rambo and the game went much better. I was playing a goth horror writer who had become successful from writings based on dreams (that were actually a dream mage torturing me with fragments of the Truth) and was a bit imbalanced to start. The other players were a priest that had lost his faith and become an overly tattooed bartender in a goth club, and a college kid who hung out at the goth club but secretly had red hair (under all his goth black) and something about him and his lineage was important but we never knew what. We had all read the books to round robin GMing so the characters we made were probably the coolest I've ever played with in a horror game. Plus the players were really great too, that always helps.
    In his defense, you can play Rambo the right way. There's an archetype called The Veteran:
    "The Veteran has seen death up close. She has spent a major part of her life in combat, weapon in hand, and adrenaline coursing through her veins. She might be an infantry soldier crouching in an Afghanistan foxhole, a SWAT officer carrying out frequent missions against heavily armed criminals, or a civilian from a country devastated by war, now a refugee but still tortured by memories of the conflict"

    Just don't give him a weapon. ...or at least make him using a weapon drive him very unstable.
    The point of The Veteran is that "you can't turn it off". It's his PTSD that makes mere memory flashbacks transport his mind, and maybe even his physical self, back to warzones. ...and when the memories leave, he's a shivering, curled up wreck wanting his dead army buddies back alive - not dead and beckoning him to join them. He can't sleep because if he relaxes the memories will come. He has nightmares which he screams himself awake from. Veterans don't come back as action heroes. They come back with "combat fatigue", where their self-preservation instincts are burned out. They're sent home when they're "spent", and some of them don't even trust what they did was the right thing to do. Some of them have commited warcrimes, whether under orders on in the heat of battle.
    That's how you play Rambo in Kult. Play him like at the end of First Blood when he breaks down crying.

  8. #18
    I'm now thirty hours into the campaign - two thirds through - and it's weird how this has somehow turned into a spy thriller. ...but that spy thrillers and horror doesn't mix, isn't the main problem with the campaign. It's how losely it's all connected:

    "You have to stop these three guys, right? ...and so know of a guy, who tells you that one of them is here, but in order to get here, you first have to go here, and then you have to go here, and then you have to take an elevator, and meet a bunch of people, and do a bunch of stuff, and then you meet him.
    Next up is the other guy. There's a guy who knows where he is, and so you have to go talk to him first, and then you have to go here.
    Now, the THIRD guy, there's a guy who knows where he is, but there's a guy who knows where HE is, and so first you have to talk to him, and then you have to talk to the other guy, and THEN you have to go to the place he's at."

    ...and these three guys, much like the cults in Masks of Nyarlathotep, they're all doing their own thing! It feels like The Black Madonna shouldn't even have been a campaign, but three separate short adventures. There is very little linking these people together, and this "You have to talk to a guy who knows where he is." investigative thing, is so repetitive, and connects everything extremely loosely. It feels like it's a campaign just for the sake of beating your chest and calling it a campaign. At this point I have to ask myself if there's any point to campaigns to begin with, as opposed to just several small adventures.

    Maybe I don't get Kult's gameworld at all. I've read the entire core gameworld, but it doesn't really say how to play the game, so who knows? Maybe it's supposed to be this weird X-Files cold war. ...but that's not horror. It's described as a horror game, and how it's all about being tormented by memories, in the rules, but then all of a sudden it instead wants to be a spy game. Wtf? It's like a "Roleplayer's Disease" has infected the game world, or maybe the authors of the module didn't get the game setting.

    ...but TBM is fetched from the first edition of Kult - let's not forget that. Much has changed. Looking forward to reading the many new scenarios for it later.

  9. #19

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    If the forces behind the illusion are doing their jobs then the campaign should look like anything but horror. The fun part is to slip little things and subtle hints into the game slowly revealing nothing the players believed to be happening is anything close to what is actually happening.

    For instance a group of international agents has been brought together to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a number of important scientists from their nations and others. Like most modern style games it moves from location to location as they track suspects and follow clues. Not only have the scientists disappeared but all of their personal belongings... Their homes are emptied and often the contents of their labs and offices as well. One older analog security system caught mysterious seemingly faceless men roll up in the middle of the night in vans and even security guards have no recollection these men walked right past them. Local police assume there was some sort of gas impairing the security and what seems like faceless is really a high tech gas mask. Maybe the PCs believe the police, maybe they think something is up, either way the mystery continues but subtly a bit has been revealed. In one of the homes hidden in a secret compartment is a journal with gibberish (or maybe code) written in latin and maps of important holy sites of the old world with lines drawn by the scientist which intersect from site to site. Also in the journal are several names. As they continue to research other locations they realise those other names are each node names for other missing scientists. Anyways the adventure can unfold however the players choose, the organizations they work for will be of little help, as they get closer to the end even reporting their plans can cause problems to be waiting for them. Their own bosses will tell them that they have uncovered evidence that some of the evidence they have found may have been planted to lead them in the wrong direction, even suggesting it might be one of the others in their own team. Anyway, hopefully you get the idea.

  10. #20
    Yeah, that's a style just like The Black Madonna is. This might be a typical 1st edition setting - I don't remember - but there's a long list of archetypes which are not The Agent or The Detective - archetypes like The Broken or The Artist - mental patients or hippies. The only common theme amongst the archetypes, is what happens despite of their occupations: They all have to deal with their personal emotional problems.
    ...and you can't even play a team of agents either: "Only one of each Aware Archetype can be present in a story – no doubling up!" ...so after hiring The Agent, The Detective, and The Deceiver, their agency would then have to move on to hiring pretty inappropriate people for their high-demanding job. This "You've all been hired by X." hook, that's such a lazy RPG plot hook, runs contrary to the Kult theme.
    The personal dark secrets of the PCs (according to 4th edition, page 166) are instead supposed to be their common ground, to be discovered throughout the scenario. I've read that this personal focus is a setting change for fourth edition, making the 1st-to-4th The Black Madonna remake a little out of place.

    I get the feeling that despite the heavy behind-the-scenes setting, Kult doesn't really know how it wants to play out its first act. It recommends suburbs as a setting, but quickly shys away from that by saying that settings like wildernesses and dark highways are also fine. ...but if there's any private investigators, they'd be as out of their element as Douglas Cartland is in Silent Hill 3.
    Last edited by MooCow; December 23rd, 2019 at 22:52.

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