Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Fiasco –

Alright … this past Sunday yea olde indie gaming crew tried out yet another title Fiasco.

Fiasco is an indie title published by Bully Pulpit Games and their description is as follows:

Fiasco is inspired by cinematic tales of small time capers gone disastrously wrong – inspired by films like Blood Simple, Fargo, The Way of the Gun, Burn After Reading, and A Simple Plan. You’ll play ordinary people with powerful ambition and poor impulse control. There will be big dreams and flawed execution. It won’t go well for them, to put it mildly, and in the end it will probably all go south in a glorious heap of jealousy, murder, and recrimination. Lives and reputations will be lost, painful wisdom will be gained, and if you are really lucky, your guy just might end up back where he started.
Fiasco is a GM-less game for 3-5 players, designed to be played in a few hours with six-sided dice and no preparation. During a game you will engineer and play out stupid, disastrous situations, usually at the intersection of greed, fear, and lust. It’s like making your own Coen brothers movie, in about the same amount of time it’d take to watch one.”

The game has a pretty simple mechanic that centers upon relationships between the characters.  To mention again the game is a GM-less system where everything is resolved via a shared dice pool mechanic.

The game starts by everyone taking a black and a white die … tossing em in a big pile and having someone roll em all up. That is the game's starting dice pool. From there … you would either have previously selected the “playset” (think mini setting basically … or the stage upon which your little story is going to occur) or you'd do it then. I guess really it might be even easier to describe the playset simply a theme which is represented by a series of tables by which you establish all the relationships, locations, objects/props and then you act out the a few acts and come up with resolution. Incidentally our playset was "Boomtown"   Though your playing within the genre so to speak of the playset ... and you get specific terms or signifiers you aren't flat out pigeon holed into the type of character you build, or the relationships you form, its really free form and the players individually and collectively get to weave their own story.

Ok now that I've given you my basic description of the game here is a really brief synopsis of what we did with it …

Our game involved four main characters … two brothers … the Sullivan Brothers … a woman posing as a man (yup) running a shady den of iniquity ... combination whore house gambling den (aren't they all), a faith healing snake oil salesman and his crooked, yet rather comely, accomplice Isabella. They all had a tangled web of relationships … some humorous … some twisted … and as the story unwove they sank deeper and deeper into a dark, sad tale of woe. Their own greed, arrogance and human frailty generally got the best of them … some managed to emerge at the end of the long dark night somewhat unscathed … and others paid the price.  We all thought it turned out awesome ... well in a darkly humorous way anyway ...

All in all it was pretty fun and the darkness of it all was heavily balanced with hilarity. I think every one of us really wants to play this game again. The sheer number of playsets being released (mostly for free) for this game guarantees a lot of re-playability. Just the mechanics of the game in the core book mean this is a game that you could play for weeks on end and not have much repetition.  We had a blast ... we will be back to this glorious game again and again ...

1 comment:

Alexander Man said...

Sounds very interesting... And it seems like something new and original for a change. Thanx for this..!