domingo, 8 de março de 2009

Big Brother Zombie - Tasks, Conflicts, and Zombies!

"Contestants, your Task for today is simple: inside that Zombie is the key that opens the safe with the chainsaw. You only have to open the safe to have access to a weapon that can turn the game completely!"

Here I'll go over some very important details on the game.

In any normal edition of Big Brother the Contestants would have Tasks to perform, which would result in points to be transformed into food and / or objects for the home. In BBZ, these points can only be transformed into objects, weapons, protection, things that will help combat the Zombies.

Big Brother (previously known as Game Master) will assign Tasks to Contestants, which must be resolved with the Characteristic he asked. Some Tasks will require Vigor, others Presence, others Courage.

Examples of tasks are:

Place doors in strategic sites (Test Vigor), the Big Brother may increase the difficulty of this Task, ordering that it be done in a give time limit, or a Zombie is released!

Get a gun in a room where a Zombie is chained, which may be set free if Big Brother wished (Test of Courage), this Task may become more difficult if the Zombie is already free! Of course, if failed, not only do they not get the gun, but something bad happens: another Zombie appears, the next Task is more difficult, or anything else that the sadistic Big Brother thinks of.

Decide which tools are needed to help them in the house (Presence Test - as they should argue with each other!), from a list given by Big Brother.

These Tasks are always at a difficulty between 1 and 3. The Contestant must roll a number of 6 sided die equaling the value of the Characteristic to be Tested, counting the 5's and 6's (which are then called Successes), and get a number of Successes equal to the Difficulty to be successful.

Some tasks may be more difficult (4 or more difficulty!) or have a time limit (like getting 4 Successes in 6 rolls, for example!), after which something bad happens.

The Contestants can and should cooperate. To do this they pool their Characteristics, subtract a number of dice equal to the number of Contestants involved, then rolling and counting the Successes as usual.


When the Contestants can not agree on a decision and threaten to go at each other's throats at the minimum fuss, then there is a Conflict.

Conflict is a simple comparison of Successes between Contestants, who roll the dice corresponding to the Characteristic of their choice, following the rules below:

1 - Each player must decide what to get from Conflict; before rolling the dice that decision should be well established at the table, so that there isn't any doubt at any time
2 - Each player chooses a Characteristic, based on what he wants to get from this conflict:

Steps of Conflict
a) are they trying to shame each other on a live camera? Use Presence
b) are they pushing and shoving, shouting and waving arms? Use Courage
c) are they coming to terms and punching each other? Use Vigor
d) are they using a weapon to intimidate the other and force him to do what they want? Use Presence + Courage
e) are they using a close combat weapon in fighting, trying to hurt each other? Use Courage + Vigor
f) are they using a firearm to actively hurt each other, even going for a kill? Use Presence + Vigor

Notice the difference from the point d, from the moment a weapon is used in the Conflict, a completely different level is reached: from now on, blood can run and people may be injured or worse.

Note also that from the moment they use weapons, in addition to rolling two Characteristics, they also roll any dice from the Weapon. Without going for an exhaustive list of weapons, some examples are given below:

Stick, knife, broken bottle or improvised weapon, 1 extra dice
Ax, sword: 2 extra die
Chainsaw: 3 extra die
Pistol: 2 extra die, distance
Rifle, shotgun: 3 extra die, distance
Molotov Cocktail: 2 extra die, distance, Fire

The extra die are added to the pool in conflicts where there are weapons. Fire and Distance will be explained below, in the Fight against Zombies. Use of a Molotov cocktail in a heated discussion in enclosed spaces, frankly, seems stupid, but if the player so wishes, go for it!

3 - Each Characteristic represents a number of dice (d6) to roll, as explained above; to this roll one can also add up any Popularity Points and/or Trust, when necessary, in addition to the above points for weapons. Count Successes for any dice showing 5 or 6, as always. The Trust and Popularity will be explained on another post.
4 - Finally, apply the consequences decided in paragraph 1 with the following exceptions:
a) if the winner has twice the successes of the loser, automatically applies the next level of results (if you were just trying to shame, you are in fact intimidating, if you were trying to hurt [with a Weapon!], you actually killed your opponent) but does not get another Popularity Point for accidentally scalling the Conflict
5 - if still alive and is able to do it, the loser can choose to accept the decision, or Escalate the Conflict

Escalating the Conflict

The loser may accept the consequences of this result, or the Conflict can escalate to the next Step; you can only do this once per Conflict (although you can start another Conflict later at a higher Step) and automatically get 1 Popularity Point for Escalating - viewers like violence and blood!


A zombie just wants the one thing: the brain of the Contestants! So a fight against a zombie is always at the last Step. You can only kill a Zombie if you ge twice his Success.

The Zombie has only one characteristic: Vigor. Depending on the sadism of Big Brother, the Vigor of a Zombie can go from 2, for those Zombies that drag across the room and say "braaaaaaaaiiiiiiiinssssssssss" while drooling, to 5, for those who are faster than a dragster and screeches madly with blood shot eyes. Personally I prefer the later, but your milleage may vary.

An opposing Vigor vs Vigor Test is made, just like if there where two conlficting Contestants. The Contestant can only kill the Zombie if he has twice it's successes of this, otherwise the Zombie keeps fighting as if nothing had happened.

If the Contestant is shooting the Zombie, or if he is using a Weapon with Distance, he Tests Vigor vs Vigor as usual, trying to get twice the success for a kill. However, if the Zombie gets more Successes, that means he gets closer, but did no damage, and a new Test is made - if the Zombie had twice the successes it would add +1 to Vigor for the new Test, demonstrating the momentum and velocity of the Zombie running against Contestants. Of course, if the Contestant had twice the Successes, it meant he killed the Zombie in the first shot.

If in any situation the Zombie has more Success, then the Contestant is in trouble! He can die instantly due to wounds, if the Zombie has twice the Successes, or risk Infection if the Zombie only had more Successes. Of course, if the Zombie has no Successes, or less than the Contestant's, then nothing happens: the Zombie did not hit the Contestant, or if it did, then no serious damage was done, and the Contestant did not hit the Zombie, or if he did it was not in the right place to kill the Zombie outright.

In a next post we will talk about Trust, Popularity and Infection!

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