Allegedly I’m running this at RinCon weekend after next. I was kind of hoping I could coast on my Mutant: Year Zero experience and a light reading of MGA from a couple months ago.
Last night I broke it open again. Oh my word, there is so much more going on than an anthropomorphic reskin.
I finally dug into the underlying campaign-driving metagame, called strategic turns. It is a month-by-month abstraction of the animals’ rebellion against the robotic Watchers, with the players and the GM secretly plotting against one another by sending their assets off to do things in the various habitats of Paradise Valley. Those actions, and the fallout, are what drive the fiction for the PC group.
You start out with the PCs’ own cell, which is also the Revolution’s inner circle (with the guidance of Truffaut, an NPC Mary Sue who’s there to explain things) as well as a couple NPC cells among the most-rebellious animal groups. So you start with 3 total cells, and each cell can carry out a mission. That either drives down the Watchers’ Capacity (hit points basically) or improves the Insurgency rating of a specific habitat. You need the Insurgency up high enough that the habitat starts producing its own NPC cells.
It’s all very crunchy and abstract! Reminds me a little of Wrath of the Autarch actually, this strategy boardgame-y thing that shapes the ongoing fictional situation.
So…I think I’m just gonna run that for four hours and see where we end up. When the NPC cells go off, it’s just die rolling and shifting around the fiction. When the PC cell is assigned, we actually play that out directly.
In the full campaign there are additional Key Events that get injected into the full campaign, triggered by specific metrics achieved within the strategy game. For one-shot purposes I think I can safely leave those out.
TBH I’m way more stoked to get this going for my home group, now that I understand how it works.