drbunnyhops (drbunnyhops) wrote,

Even if time is just a flicker of light and we all have to die alone

Themes: Conflicting responsibilities; Choices and consequences; Isolation; Loss

I find it interesting, and a little worrying that White Rabbit has filled so fast. I wonder what people are expecting from the game and what it will deliver.

White Rabbit has had a long gestation... It's the game I started planning after my first Kapcon 4 years ago. If my writing happened in a logical way, this would have been my first Kapcon game.

White Rabbit is not 'So Cold in Alaska'. It is similar to Alaska in that it's a response to events in my own life, and to the wider social context that these stem from. Jess Lapin is a single mother. She loves her daughter. She is also a Starship Captain. That's not just a job, but a vocation. She loves that too... Maybe more than she loves her child. How's that going to work for her? How will other people react to it? If her two roles come into conflict (which is pretty much inevitable) how long can she juggle both? What compromises will she make and how will that affect her child, her crew, her mission, her society? I have absolutely no idea (well maybe a few ideas)... and that's what makes it interesting! Other characters will also face similar challenges, and hopefully most will have to make hard choices at some point in the end-game.

I've had some amused comment on the genres section of my blurb... People are (quite legitimately) wondering how well feel-good family space opera is going to fit with Black Comedy and Horror. In my head I have this beautiful, logical thing, and if I could draw you a 4-D diagram, you'd have it too and it would all make sense :-)

In essence, White Rabbit will be a game in 3 acts, with one genre predominating in each, though hopefully it will flow, and this discontinuity won't be apparent in game. I'll talk about the 2nd and 3rd stages in later posts, but for now...

Act 1. Feel Good Family Drama

This first phase will be strongly influenced by new generation Star Trek and be light-hearted in tone. but hopefully the characters will make choices that will set things up naturally (without too much external GM push) to cause problems in the next stage. I aim to use team-building/training techniques, cunningly disguised as plot, to get people laughing, chatting, working together in groups. Unlike a conventional horror game, I'll encourage people (especially those playing kids) to be silly, show off and do things that don't appear to follow the story arc. The rest of the game will build on this phase, and that childish behaviour may turn out to be critical to the survival of the Argent. Actions have consequences. Especially when you are isolated in a metal box in a hostile environment.

The whole game hinges on player buy-in at this stage. For the game to have the impact I hope for, it will be important that players identify with their characters and characters love each other... We'll need to build families, a community that cares and characters that have something to lose, because that means that they won't give in...

Alaska was inspired by a single song... White Rabbit has a few, but if there is one that encompasses the whole game, I think it will be this one.

Tags: feel good family drama, roleplaying, white rabbit
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