Board game / Tabletop Game Night

Hello folx!

So there has been interest in this one way or another. @lizzard has mentioned their nephew starting a D&D game, and @reilytech led a pretty fun set of Resistance games.

Maybe we could make this… a regular thing! Let’s pick a place (since Noisebridge is closed to non building stuff) and a time of week! I’d suggest Thursday or Friday evening at the Sycamore, I can also fit 3-4 people in my apartment so we’re not freezing outdoors.

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+1 for the sycamore. Haven’t been there in a year. Does anyone know if their back patio is open yet? Or will be by the 15th?

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Yes the back patio is open now. Went there with Pyconaught and Cultiejen last Saturday. I’m quite sure that it will be open on the 15th as well.

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I’d be down for some board games! Either now, or when the space reopens.

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Excellent!

This Thursday is 5MoF, but I can start hyping it up for next Thursday. We’ll have a Noisebridge in Semi-Exile :stuck_out_tongue: .

I have an idea for a DND5E character that I’d like to play.

Would also like to have a solarpunk san francisco gurps game.

Solarpunk sf gurps game? Tell me more

big idea —> all dreams of the future now are apocalyptic and awful therefore a new dream must be constructed

Utilizing the technology available and implemented can be fair game for this game about a post “event” future. All things are possible that are materially available now, but due to the loss of the US empire, the cost of rare minerals are not available to all people of the “first world”. They are now purchased from the previously over exploited nations of the 20th and 21st century mined and sorted by Free Libre Open Source robots. As a result, Metal is expensive and wood is used whenever possible for structures and tools that don’t absolutely need to be metal.

Some ideas for the tech are: Water is a resource that is erratic to obtain from older methods due to the change in climate, one solution may be to have water farms that condence water vapor using plastic or glass buoys with the sun as the means to vaporize, the water and another part of the buoy to condence the water, then harvested by drones. Water collections off of the rain in streets is stored in water towers and used to water people’s various home gardens. Also, public restrooms are available for anyone to use.

The hierarchies that exist: Most people technically don’t have a job. They just might be able to do some things better than others because they decided to get good at it by investing time. A government of representative democracy taxes the people, but invests in disabled people to allow them to live the best they can. As a result, taxpayers fund affirming surgery and hormones. People with mental disabilities can get psychological treatment and medicine to promote the most pro social behavior. Pro social behavior is encouraged. I’m not sure how money would be but maybe social credits stored on a decentralized database. The government also serves and produces and distributes most products that the public needs that can’t be made by hand. The government is designed by function to do whatever everyone agrees must be done for the good of society, but can’t be done on a completely voluntary basis. The 20th and 21th century models of distribution from Walmart and Amazon are controlled by the workers, and as a result don’t want to do too much and automate whenever possible. The distribution and production corporations are still liable to the desires of the representative democracy rather than the markets. The distributors don’t want to distribute more goods than necessary because they would rather have fun than work, so it is difficult to acquire more than of any given finished product. The same goes for production producers don’t produce more than is necessary. This virtuous cycle leads to less production, what commodities are available are high quality, durable, modular and easy to fix as the people want them, With less production also, the society does not pollute as much and require imperialism to acquire more resources. More often than not punishments for crimes are not so much violence against the body, or imprisonment but loss of labor credits and public ridicule.

Information technology: All widely used software is Open source. If anyone tries to distribute technology widely enough to get people’s attention and keep it closed source, the government releases a bounty for whoever releases it to the public blockchain first. There used to be an official way to sell the software for labor credits by the developer, but after too many developers illegally overmarketed their closed source software and arranged to get “hacked” and arrange to get the money back from the hacker for their “hard work” because the profit margins were higher that way, The court ruled that “the hacking method must be the official only way to monetize releasing free and open source software because the result is pretty much the same and it would be funnier that way”.

end of commodity fetishism?: most goods are hand made by people when they have time or hand me downs from previous generations. complicated goods that can’t be made by hand are made by the government’s production and distribution unions, but designed to be modified to reflect the individuality of the owner. At age 13, (maybe older), teenagers are given a cell phone by the government and can observe posts on forums where people discuss things and see the public forums where decisions are made. The cell phones have a translucent wood screen with E ink displays and a back light that is mostly not turned on to have longer lasting battery life. The outer shell of the cell phone is made of wood, but adults encourage them to decorate or carve the outside to match whatever the teen wants society to see them as.

Factions: Political conflict is not about democrats or republicans debating on whether to destroy the world in a kind or cruel manner. We can not extract as many resources as much as we used to due to the end of the US empire’s imperialism, a change in labor policy away from domestic capitalism, and climate change making resource extraction more expensive. Therefore not all high advanced tech projects can be pursued simultaneously with the manpower we have. Lots of time is volunteered towards these projects goals but government funding for more manpower and resources is a highly coveted prize. All parties may agree that these goals are attempting to push humanity further for the greater good, but what is this greater good anyways? The devil lies in the details.

Anonymous: We are Anonymous. We do not forgive. We do not forget. We are legion. Expect us. We will hack into your secrets to teach you about the true dark truth about humanity. We are not to be trusted. Trust nobody, especially nor the government. Their representatives show up to meetings in cosplay of some fictional character and often perform their duties in character. They have been known to hack and steal, then report to the victim how to secure their identity or belongings, or that is what they claim to be their goal. Some of them value anonymity so much that they take the identity of others instead of fictional, randomly generated people, or well known famous people. It has been agreed that their official position is that any crimes committed without undoing the consequences must be punished according to the laws of the land. They want as much privacy as possible and have quantum encrypted privacy available to everyone. They hack and steal to keep everyone on their toes, much to the chagrin of everyone else. Enemies of the society often pretend to be them, which also makes most people suspicious of them. Officially, they are the controlled opposition of the government to keep unnecessary hierarchy down and keep the government honest.

Archivists: Knowledge is power. All knowledge must be kept available to everyone in order to reduce hierarchies. Not recording or withholding or lying creates a kind of hierarchy between those that hide the truth and those that know the truth. They think that the government is not intrusive enough for Anonymous to be tolerated or needed anymore and exist to create dissension. They often wear scrolls or books with many letters or reference famously leaked documents that changed the world. They are very much in favor of keeping the source code open for all software and would like all software to be developed in a fully accessible database. They want as much information stored as possible and the resources available to do so, at the expense of the other party’s projects.

Primitivists: The government is a hierarchy and a tool for scoundrels to abuse their lessors. The technology we can make ourselves is fine enough to live. Everyone else in these meetings are lying and trying to get ahead of the others to make others their lesser. We don’t need to make things complicated. There is no “us” and “them” when we abolish this government. They are known to dress in handmade leather clothes or dress up like animals. This faction prefers not advancing technology that requires centralization of power and can be obtained by handmade goods. They do, however approve of biotechnology along the lines of things that can create themselves without the need for centralized production. They are often criticized for being “essentialist” and idealistic, but may in the future be right, but we might need to keep the government around for some other project.

The Tower of Babel Project: We are often known to babel on about Babylon, but we truly need to unite under one humanity. That humanity that is loving, benevolent, powerful, wise, and knowing has been us the whole time. The concept of god is what we sought to emulate is what god is. We always wanted to become god, for they are OUR transition goal for OUR entire species! Frederich Nieche may have despaired at the death of god, but misunderstood becoming the uberminch as a personal goal instead of our species goal. When we bicker amongst ourselves, this is God thinking! Fear not disagreement in good faith with the whole of humanity in mind. What we thought was god was but a toy for our amusement that must be discarded when we all grow up. We shall find our path towards divinity. This group often wears the symbols of older religions and appropriates them into their own vision. They also like to wear shirts with slogans that say “Believe in yourself! Believe we are God!” This religious group seeks to unify humanity by letting them all experience the bigger picture view of looking at earth from a space elevator as part of a coming of age ceremony. The research required to get everyone to see the “bigger picture” for the “enlightenment” of a united humanity requires research and resources larger than their religious movement can provide and would greatly cut into the government budget. They view the other factions as unenlightened at the moment, but will see/ become the truth soon enough. They are viewed as arrogant and annoying, but often good at synthesizing solutions from contradictions.

Trans-humanists: We are beyond nature and should embrace that. We are technology and should embrace that. Aging and death are not inevitable but merely diseases that we have not cured yet. Why should “nature” determine what we are. We are our actions! We can make ourselves in any form that we like. This faction priorities the integration of technology into human bodies to make humanity immortal beings and also shaping themselves into improved versions of humanity. They want to prioritize investment into biotechnology to create a new body for humanity. They are often criticized for being reckless and self serving, but truly want to end unnecessary suffering created by nature.

Star eaters: We were born from the stars and we can master the power of fusion reactors if we could only get the funding! This faction seeks to consume more electricity and thinks that prioritizing funding towards fusion reactors can reach all of their goals. They want to mimic fusion reactors like the sun on earth, so that they can build space crafts to build Dyson spheres to extract all of the energy from the sun, so that they can terraform the Earth and all of the other planets to meet humanity’s goals. They are often accused of being crypto-capitalists, but if they are right about energy, the other projects can be pursued as well.

Accountants: All of these visions require resources that we probably can’t extract yet. We should be ecologically minded and not extract more than we can control the consequences of. We should focus on becoming more ecologically sustainable in all of the destructive processes that we still participate in. This faction wants to account for all of the resources on the planet first before we explore any other costly projects. They think that a survey of all of the material resources and wildlife and oceans should be explored in an environmental surveys and research money should be focused on replacing environmentally destructive practices with sustainably produced commodities that use common recyclable minerals rather than rare and hard to find minerals. They seem to be stingy killjoys, but definitely try to keep things in perspective.

Many sensible people don’t participate in politics because things seem great as they are.

(We can make more factions for fun if we want to and deal with the inter political and cultural differences between regional cultures)

Players: Players are smart in some field and are representatives in government or investigating a hazardous situation

Conflict ideas:

Effects of climate change causing starvation and who gets fed or find ways to feed everyone what is needed without abandoning their morals

Reactionaries that don’t want to share the bounty want to fight for individualism or Q or western civilization whatever the hell excuse they have for ruining everything. They raid fun loving communists that want to serve the greater good. Do we kill them or do we find a way to integrate them into our society? How do we do this? Will we start a war over a misunderstanding or are their actions indicative that our government not serving everyone’s needs as they claim?

An earthquake occurs. The heroes need to find a way to rescue everyone from the damaged buildings and restore the infrastructure to save the great new civilization under the sun.

A serial killer is on the loose. It is hard to get enough evidence with all of these privacy features that Anonymous makes mandatory with all of their hacking. The killer knows our infrastructure. They know what we stand for. How do we stop this killer without hurting innocents and their privacy?

Something went wrong with our interesting infrastructure. It is a complicated mechanism that has parts that not everyone entirely understands. is this problem a bug overlooked or is this a feature built by a political faction to force the narrative in their favor?

I had fun writing this.

Please add ideas if you want to work on world building or character building, plot hooks, or interesting political factions.

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Ok, so I took another look and I realized I missed some of the tropes / factions in the middle, so this suggestion may have already been covered. That being said, skimming the factions, they seem unique and interesting enough.

Let’s take a look at the conflicts. Right now, we have a couple Villains of the Week:

  • The Barbarian trope, packaged in a Qanon-shaped box because, hey, they literally wear Viking helmets. There’s this twist that we might have to figure out whether enlightenment or war will stop them, but given this is a game with no real-life stakes I’d know which I choose.
  • Murder Mystery, but with the twist that we can collect very little evidence
  • Natural Disaster, plain and simple
  • Duties for post-post-apocalypse survival where we have a civilization again, but getting some resources is still pretty hard. I would say creating a thriving civilization without easy access to water is difficult, but we could certainly get by Anarres style.

With the exception of the latter being general society maintenance, most of these are Villain of the Week tropes. They make a good one-off story and shed light on how this world works, but they don’t feel compelling enough. For me, in order to be really drawn into the story, I need a Big Bad that poses a threat to the civilization.

Looking on the section on mandated open sourcing, what if that was more of a central conflict? For example, in the Dispossessed, the main conflict is a character who, in an attempt to publish his work on ultra-fast travel, goes to an uber-capitalist society, only to realize his invention will mostly be co-opted for war. We could do something similar: after seeing capitalism wreak havoc on the world, intellectuals and proletariats of the old society (let’s call it Bezoso) had enough, and split into their own Solarpunk colony. Normally, the Bezoso could just use their wealth and power to destroy the Solarpunks or tarnish their movement, but they can’t; not only does centuries of exploitation mean the Solarpunks can’t simply be propaganda’d over, but the Solarpunk movement also drained Bezoso of all its intellectual “resources” . Defeating the Solarpunks outright would mean less progress, which would be devastating in Bezoso’s post-apocalyptic climate and deplenish that sweet, sweet capital, which frightens the Bezoso elite more than anything.

Inversely, without the conveniences of exploitation and moral rule-bending, the Solarpunks can secede, but not eclipse Bezoso entirely. Additionally, as a pacifist society, the Solarpunks won’t just try and coupe the Bezoso (although this could be a subject of dispute within Solarpunk ranks). For now, the Solarpunks have to focus on expanding and recruitment before Bezoso destroys what’s left of the world.

But here’s where the plot thickens. Bezoso, instead of defeating Solarpunk, realizes that open-source tech is available to everyone. Solarpunk is giving out its most valuable resource for free. This is where the Anonymous crowd can come in. While trying to enforce laws on another society could prove problematic, Bezoso doesn’t realize using open-source software outside its expected purpose can have… consequences :wink: . Anonymous could set some trap cards in the form of backdoors / zero-days that prevent exploitative use of the open source code (the fun will be figuring out what those are). Bezoso, not knowing any better, activates these and suffers the consequences, but they can’t blame Solarpunk for something they essentially did to themselves.

There may be some adjustment to make this premise more of a serious revolution and less Home Alone, Hacker Edition, but I feel like it sets up something greater to overcome (in addition to the conflicts you mentioned that do some needed world building).

So I realize we’re actually trying to do legit work on Thursday evenings, so maybe not then.

Let’s do this Wednesday!

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Actually I’ve had things come up, so I’ll postpone it for now