The Simple Desert: There are a few places where people dwell but it is all highway and desert in all directions. Where are you on an olde world map? Who knows? Who cares? Where are you getting your next drink of water?
Empirepocalypse: Eastern Seaboard, raise the sea level by 30 feet or so. Start in NYC, where people are surviving in skyscrapers, boats, remaining bridges and that ole decommissioned aircraft carrier/museum parked there.
The Underground: Whatever happened on the surface, only people who retreated underground survived. The world is a series of tunnels and underground highways linking old mines to old missile silos to old government vaults.
Low Earth Orbit: There are enough space stations in orbit that the last of humanity is clinging to life while orbiting the tombworld called Earth. Moon-base, space elevator and a few space stations put up by the last of the space-capable powers before the apocalypse 50 years ago (India, China, Russia and the Vatican). Motorcycle gangs = jet pack gangs. Semi-truck = space shuttle. Interceptor Car = Orbital Fighter Jet.
We made a choice. An Operator and a Weaponized in Low Earth Orbit. Excited!
The Hard Zones are as follows:
The Olde Station – the piece of crap first floated into space. Often called The Tomb.
The Last Elevator – the last tether to Earth, used to grow food and transport those with the resources and the bravery to set foot on the ruined planet that birthed our species.
The Moon – our species’ first stop in space, now home to the closest thing to a city that remains and the defiled historical site of the First Landing.
The Highest Cathedral – the Vatican’s first orbital platform, an ambitious half-completed cross floating in space. The Jesuits produce some of the finest scientific minds left.
The Zhenbao-Damanski Station – Where Chinese and Russian clans play out the last pathetic breaths of earthbound political rivalries with Indian families trying to broker peace. The original name for the station is lost, now it is named after an island Russia and China fought over back on Earth.
I can’t WAIT to see their playbook decisions. They will say so much about the setting.
If you’d like to see more Apocalypse World: Burned Over Low Earth Orbit stuff, please check out the link to the Low Earth Orbit Index below.
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The first NPC we met was an AI who Daniel named, Stat. I’m thrilled that he decided that Lip considers AI people and wants to save Stat from corporate indentured servitude. Lip has a bit of an exhausted nurse’s cold streak; I really didn’t know what he’d do.
After watching Fury Road every few months since it came out I rewatched Beyond Thunderdome tonight and it held up well. The movies have more parallels than I thought. It felt like both films started with the same opening move but different results.
Well, ain’t we a pair…
In the beginning of the session if you are walking the path of Mad Max, the Stranger with No Name, the One Who Keeps Mr. Death in His Pocket, the Walker in the Waste, the Raggedy Man, roll +Hard.
On a 10+, you get to the charged situation in pretty good shape, Choose 5
On a 7-9, choose 3 from the list.
On a 6 or lower, choose 1.
_ You’ve got your vehicle but it is almost out of fuel
_ You’re a walking weapons cache. Roll Under Fire if you are supposed to be without a weapon and on a hit, tell the MC how you tucked one away where no one thought to look.
_ You’ve got both boots. If nothing else you can walk the fuck out of here.
_ You’ve got that little shiny lux thing you found in the wastelands, stuck in your belt; its not a weapon. Do you know what it is?
_ You’ve got your autonomy, no one has captured you nor chained you to their bumper.
_ You’ve got water and food to last a few days but not enough to walk out of here and hope to make it to the next settlement.
_ You’re not seeing ghosts from past regrets quite as often but if shit gets dangerous old traumas will likely surface. Knowing the difference between those old ghosts and the people right in front of you might prove challenging.
I’ve never wanted a tweet to go viral as much as this one:
Please join us! Jump on in to the playlists and let us know what you’re thinking. Cheer the protagonists, hiss at the villains and gasp at the complications as apocalyptica is barfed forth, questions are asked/acted upon and fuckery is dealt out.
It is an average night in the Mouse Peninsula when Nurse Lip gets a call to extract a mid-level corporate asshole, Mr. Roark, from a firefight in the courtyard of a storybook castle.
Ell wakes up in his Trenchtown crash-pad to find out that he is a finalist for the prestigious Trenchtown Adventurer’s Grant for the Betterment of Mars. This is a guy who knows all of the angles, watch him work them all in the not-quite terraformed Martian hellscape.
I’m MCing two games in a kind of video-play-by-post and I’m surprised at how much fun it is. At first I was all about keeping it fast and loose. Quickly, I wanted my lighting to be better and to have it look and sound cool for the video recording. I’ll get over it.
Another shock is how good the Burned Over Zine is. The Apocalypse World 2e text is a leap over the original and now the Bakers are vaulting over that with these new moves and playbooks. The new Barter rules are tight.
At the end of the day, the game comes first. I’m glad this kind of play is this much fun. If you give it a go and play this way, please let me know how it goes for ya. If you give our games a listen, please leave comments and ask questions.
With video it kinda feels like play-by-post and it kinda doesn’t. I’ve enjoyed play-by-post games in the past and it was through those games that I realized how much I really love writing. That said, it is a ton of time and effort to play a game like that with lots of keyboard sweat. I’m hoping the quick nature of video responses will keep the sweat factor down and keep the games going where other pbp games tend to fall to the wayside. Also in our favor is the 1 MC/1 PC dynamic that will cut down on exhausting lag. Time will tell.
Daniel and Jay are amazing people. Please support their work.