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Character funnels in other systems?

MjrTrauma

One of Everything
Validated User
Does anyone have experience adapting the character funnel from DCC to other systems?

We recently did it RAW for a quick campaign in DCC, and I really like two of the things it accomplished, namely
a) servicing as a gentle introduction to the basic rules without getting into any of the more advanced subsystems
b) Building a sense of attachment, ownership, and history with those characters that make their way through the funnel, while letting the players know that it is okay for bad things to happen to the characters.

There have been some suggestions in the group of trying a different system once we're done with the current arc in DCC, and we're looking to Shadowrun next, likely with the Anarchy ruleset. Has anyone done a funnel for SR, or have any suggestions to offer in more general terms?

(For those unaware, a character funnel is where each player creates 3-4 0-level (or equivalent) characters, and see which one's survive the initial adventure before allowing them class levels, special abilities, and the like.)
 

mitchw

Viral Marketing Shill?
Validated User
I participated in a kickstarter a while back that had a funnel setup for a PBTA game. I will see if I can look it up and update this post.

Edit: Perilous Journeys was the kickstarter. They had a preliminary version called Funnel World.

I am sure you could do it in Savage Worlds by limiting the skill and attribute points OR just withhold the wild die until the funnel was done.
 
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bottg

Registered User
Validated User
I usec it for the lvl 0 adventure for Shadows of the Demon Lord and it worked brilliantly. Lvl 0 characters have no special abilities other than professions, so it was fast and easy.
 

effkat

Registered User
Validated User
Before I knew of Funnel World I played a home made Dungeon World hack with a funnel. I’m not familiar with SR Anarchy, but I’m guessing you could hack together something. Some random tables for backgrounds, skills and attributes and go.
 

Timon

Unabashed optimist
RPGnet Member
Validated User
I think it is a great approach but very much limited to OSR games. It would not work in a system that has a longer, slower character generation process. Even Savage Worlds expects your character to survive a few encounters. I would not try it with Shadowrun.

EDIT: Based on some thoughtful comments above I have reconsidered. You can do this for any system but you would need a quick, easy way of generating a bunch of 0-level characters, much less capable than a first level Shadowrun character. You also need to interleave Shadowrun's (used to be extensive and complex) chargen process with play. It sounds cool but it is a significant amount of work.
 
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MjrTrauma

One of Everything
Validated User
I participated in a kickstarter a while back that had a funnel setup for a PBTA game. I will see if I can look it up and update this post.

Edit: Perilous Journeys was the kickstarter. They had a preliminary version called Funnel World.

I am sure you could do it in Savage Worlds by limiting the skill and attribute points OR just withhold the wild die until the funnel was done.
I have a hardcopy of Dungeon World sitting on the shelf. It was one of the options we were looking at for getting back into "D&D", but we went with DCC instead. Thanks for the Funnel World recc though, looks like I could mine something from there. :)
 

MjrTrauma

One of Everything
Validated User
I think it is a great approach but very much limited to OSR games. It would not work in a system that has a longer, slower character generation process. Even Savage Worlds expects your character to survive a few encounters. I would not try it with Shadowrun.

EDIT: Based on some thoughtful comments above I have reconsidered. You can do this for any system but you would need a quick, easy way of generating a bunch of 0-level characters, much less capable than a first level Shadowrun character. You also need to interleave Shadowrun's (used to be extensive and complex) chargen process with play. It sounds cool but it is a significant amount of work.
Thanks for the reply, and the edit. I think you're right that part of what makes the funnel work is the quickly-generated characters, and I'm not quite sure how to do that with Shadowrun: Anarchy. The list would be like:
  1. "100 Random Cyberpunk Civilian Citizens"
  2. Random Stats
  3. Random Starting Skill
  4. Random Piece of Gear
  5. Random Shadow Amp

I'm not sure if a list already exists for items 1 and 4. Items 2 and 5 can be derived from the rulebook, I guess. Sorting out Random Stats for SR:A will be the tricky part, as I'm not sure what would be appropriate.
 

effkat

Registered User
Validated User
If you want PCs to be somewhat balanced I would look at how Reign does random chargen. Basically you roll a fistful of dice and look up matches in tables. Each die is worth a number of points so all characters are equal points-wise.

If you don’t care about that kind of balance, I would just roll a die for each stat or something totally random like that.
 

MjrTrauma

One of Everything
Validated User
If you want PCs to be somewhat balanced I would look at how Reign does random chargen. Basically you roll a fistful of dice and look up matches in tables. Each die is worth a number of points so all characters are equal points-wise.

If you don’t care about that kind of balance, I would just roll a die for each stat or something totally random like that.
Okay, I took a look at that , and the online generator for it, and it seems pretty interesting. There seems to be a few online chargen systems for various editions of SR, so I might be able to adapt them to either the DCC or Reign framework. I'm not that worried about balance (I think part of the DCC funnel is it's anti-balance), but a straight D6 for each stat might be *too* swingy. 3d6 tends to give a better bell curve. Hmm. Something for me to ponder.
 
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