I'm a junkie and I need new games.
But Dungeon World is different somehow. In a certain way Shadowrun too but this post is about Dungeon World.
So after running a game of Dungeon World with new friends and players (my girlfriend, a colleague and his wife), it was a blast. At first I thought the fun came from having new players but also from the mechanics. The only thing on your lips that night was how cool the system is but the players had something to do with it. After playing a couple of games with them I decided to give it a shot with my old friends and players. Last time I dropped a game with them it was because the mechanics lead to a point where I felt imprisoned into a cage of number crunching.
Quick tip. If you need to stop and think about how the mechanics will reflect your idea instead of how you should describe your idea...something is wrong and you should consider if you're comfortable with the system you're playing. In my case, even after years of D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder I wasn't comfortable. I'll never be.
So after convincing one of my old players to try it with me ( I have to say my girlfriend was already preaching how cool the game is) we had to make a deal with another one. He was the most skeptical of them. He's a hardcore 3.5/Pathfinder fan and for him the rules are simple and enable him, both as a player and a GM. So why switch to Dungeon World when you can already do exactly what you want in Pathfinder? "Because it's just faster and more exciting in Dungeon World" my girlfriend said.
I was so sure about Dungeon World that I said: if you give me one night to show you Dungeon World and you don't like it, we'll switch to Pathfinder. He knows how I feel about Pathfinder so he knew something was up.
So we play our first game. Character creation goes well and they already feel inspired by the options for bonds and looks. I told them they were totally optional and we could come up with our own if we want. But they loved them. Since they already knew about the collaborative part of the game I (excessively) sold them, Frank comes with an idea. "Can I lead a small thieves guild and we own a tavern as a front?" Wow that's an awesome idea! Then I schemed and suggested the inn was called the Slayed Dragon. He was sold. Because the Slayed Dragon is the famous inn that they built in the city they established in our previous 4E game.
See, in our previous game of 4E, which was my longuest game ever that lasted 6 game sessions, we started in small town threatened by orcs and when the city was invaded they had to flee with the survivors. They migrated south and established a camp near a fortified city called Greenwall. After dealing with politics they got permission from the lord of Greenwall to establish a small town. As a group they chose the name: Hopewell. We quickly roleplayed the following months of constructions and they went to kill a dragon and put his bones on the roof themselves. So when I used that as a lever for my game of Dungeon World, their mind were blown.
For Dungeon World we basically took off where the 4E game ended but with new characters and in a darker time. Players are discovering who was behind the orc invasion of Fallcrest. The thieves' guild was interested in an artifact possessed by a local lord. They went there, infiltrated the fortress and found the artifact was actually a neckless of Gruumsh. They came up with what it does, how dangerous it is and even the name. Being a GM was never so simple. Just let the player argue on how dangerous the item is and make a call when you feel like it. So it's dangerous right? Ok. Now they leave the castle and when they do they surprise the lord in a meeting with the orcs. We've (not just the players, me too) found out that the lord was responsible for the invasion of Fallcrest and now he plans to take over Greenwall and Hopewell. He kept the artifact at hand to manipulate the orcs into submission. But with the neckless gone, who knows what's he's gonna do now right?
Last game was entirely around the mage trying to make a ritual to hide the neckless and protect it. See rituals in Dungeon World works in a really cool way. You call what you want to produce and the GM will tell you how you can manage it. "Awesome idea but you'll need to find the powerful instructions in a scroll and you recall them being part of a collection of scrolls in the ruins of Barad Draks. The dwarf city in the Grey mountains." So a single ritual created this awesome adventure.
Now they love Dungeon World. They still play Pathfinder in their own games but when they come to my place for Dungeon World, they can only expect being on the edge of their seat.