Yes, And; No, But + Princess Play

Hopeless_Wanderer's picture

If you were using a Yes, And; No, But dice mechanic with princess play (in a game with young players, children), what would be the best distribution of:

yes, and...
yes, but...
no, but...
no, and...

If you don't want to use all these levels of success and failure, that's okay, but let's not re-hash the discussion we had on S-G about Yes, But and No, And. I am more interested in what numerical spread you think would work best for princess play. Also consider when answering, that there would be an extra die for magic, (skill) advantages, etc.

Tod's picture

Before we get into curves and spreads, do you have an idea about the core mechanic? Are we talking about beating a DL, or rolling a certain number of "hits" ("4 or higher" etc) out of a pool? Right off the bat I think pools would be good because I have a feeling kids enjoy rolling MORE DICE! Dice could even be a resource to be managed, like: "you have X number of dice, how many will you put into this roll?" There's also the question of how dice are driven or modified by Stats. A Stat might literally tell you which die to roll (like in Wildlings), or it could apply a mod to the roll (depending on the stat that governs the skill used, like in DayTrippers), or you could do away with mods altogether and make all maneuvers similar (less math, easier to learn).

The "princess play" element might be addressed by allowing a choice to "push it" after the initial roll. So you roll, you see what that would do for you, and then you are given the choice to "push it" by rolling another die, spending another point, etc. Makes success a whole lot more likely.

Paul T.'s picture

I think it depends a great deal on what your mechanics are and when they get engaged. For example, when do we roll the dice? Who’s involved?

My answer might be very different depending on the context. Are we Princess Playing a tea party or plucky space explorers having adventures? Do we expect the characters to ever go against each other in these moments of resolution? And so on.

Hopeless_Wanderer's picture

I was planning on using an Achipelago mechanic, but with dice to make things a bit simpler. So, players narratate until someone says, "that's not so easy", then set stakes and roll dice. Add a dice to the roll for an advantage, magic, etc. Keep the best two.

Tod's picture

DayTrippers also uses the bipartite action resolution of Archipelago III, but it leaves out the straight "No" answer (I find that narratively boring). In the core mechanic the GM sets a Difficulty Level from 1-10, and Players must roll against it using a number of D6s depending on stats (keep the highest), plus skill bonus, plus/minus any conditional mods. Once the roll is made, the Action Resolution Table is consulted:
DayTrippers Action Resolution Table

Hopeless_Wanderer's picture

Okay... Tod, I am not a math-guy. I'm a language-guy. I want something that requires the least GM input as possible, because ultimately, I want to transition to GM-less. I also want something really light because the narration is really the point of playing--I am using the game with ESL students (as usual). Right now, I am using Otherkind dice, but I can't really get the students to understand the process of assigning the dice, so I am looking for something even more straightforward. I just want something easy to implement so we can get down to the story-telling with moments of high tension punctuated with dice rolls.

The game/narration is being supported with LEGO minifigures and settings made of LEGO.

Hopeless_Wanderer's picture

Maybe I will switch to a Pocket Danger Patrol mechanic, but I am really wedded to using d6s, so I'd prefer Otherkind or a Yes, and system. Whatever the system, one dice roll has to resolve everything--no charts and tables or sub-procedures. I need quick resolution so as not to kill the flow of the narrative/play.

Tod's picture

Ok, two questions...
1. I believe you're saying Players always roll 1d6, and sometimes 2d6 or more (if they have some sort of advantage/bonus/magic, etc), and if so, they keep the highest 2. Is that correct?
2. Does the above table seem too complex for your target audience? ("Miss by 1," "miss by more than 1," etc?) I consider it an easy way to work in the Buts and Ands.

ETA: If we say 7 is always the DL the GM doesn't have to do anything, and the table would look like this:
2-5 = No And
6 = No But
7 = Yes But
8 = Yes
9-12 = Yes And

Those numbers will be internalized pretty quickly. Note that the determination of what exactly the Ands and Buts mean is all up to narration. Any result of “AND” or “BUT” indicates a tactical mishap, a stroke of good luck or bad luck, a gain or loss of advantage, damage to something worn or carried, a character taking control of an object or situation, or whatever makes the most sense, depending on the situation. In DayTrippers, Players describe positive effects (an AND on a YES or a BUT on a NO), while the GM handles negative ones (the contra of those), but in your game, perhaps the Players do both.

EATA: But you'd want to make sure there's always at least 2 dice hitting the table.

Paul T.'s picture

For example, could you slap labels on the d6, with text that says "yes, and" or whatever, on each face?

Or are you committed to a specific dice technique and resolution method already?

Could you paint the sides of the dice different colours, like red (for no), green (for yes), purple (for but), and draw lines the pips on the remaining side to make a "+" (for and)?

Could you use a deck of cards you draw from?

Emmett's picture

Fudge dice?
If you get all pluses it's a yes, if you get all minuses it's a no.
If you get a plus and a minus it's a yes but.
The more murky the question (the less binary the result should be) the more dice you include. Is the door locked? 1df Can I convince him? 3df