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UnCO3
Feb 11, 2010

Ye gods!


Tell stories. Isn't that what we always do?

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Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005
Probation
Can't post for 34 minutes!


Remind them that for all our troubles and tribulations, we have remained. If there is one lesson we have learned, it is persistence.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006


It's okay to be scared. You have to learn fear to be able to get past it.

megane
Jun 20, 2008



Our children will endure. They are strong, like we taught them to be.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006


Project Completed
We are a simple people, not given to elaborate ceremony. It just takes a promise and a kiss and then a wedding is complete. Often it is done in some quiet, wild place and we only find out afterwards when it's already happened.

Kala and Iorangi marry on the shore in front of us all. It is a simple affair but it is beautiful in a way few can put into words. We watch and we go home smiling.

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005
Probation
Can't post for 34 minutes!


Winter - Week 2

quote:

Now is the time to conserve energy and resources. A project fails, but gain an Abundance.

We can't wait any longer. The Parish have been too silent - none have seen or heard from them since the storm. Recklessly, we climb the Scrapers to seek them. We labored to climb the outside face of the structure, but time and weathering has revealed a crack in its facade. After days of trial and error, we reach the top.

They are gone. There are no signs of violence, and indeed things look as though they've been stowed neatly away. Atop a table in the center of the open-air pavilion is a small silver box. Opening it, we find only a small folded sheet of paper with the symbol for the white bird and a key. Further exploration brought us to a locked store room containing several...

Somethings?

Action - Discover Something New:
From up here we can see the shape of the coast, see how tiny our village is.

It's strangely peaceful. There's a whole world out there, and it's all ours.

Projects: None
Abundances: fresh water, seafood, flying wings(?)
Scarcities: gods, kelp, peace of mind
Contempt: UnCO3 (1), Tyrannosaurus (1), megane (1), Dog Kisser (0)

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006


"There's a whole world out there, and it's all ours."

Losing Contempt.

UnCO3
Feb 11, 2010

Ye gods!


Losing Contempt.

megane
Jun 20, 2008



I'll drop Contempt as well.

UnCO3
Feb 11, 2010

Ye gods!


Winter Week 3

UnCO3
Feb 11, 2010

Ye gods!


The game is over and conversational restrictions are lifted!

Well, that's one of the more unambiguously positive endings I've seen to a game of The Quiet Year.

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005
Probation
Can't post for 34 minutes!


Yeah, the game ending early into winter makes it a little less stressful for sure! Does anyone have any thoughts about any of the individual elements and themes that came together?

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006


Wow

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006


Yeah, so, this game was very different from all the other ones I've played. I definitely have some thoughts on both the community and on the gameplay. I also want to speculate on certain mysteries that went unresolved and what I think they mean. But I might not be able to put down my thoughts properly until tomorrow.

Until then, I want to say that this was super fun. And I love the bizarrely positive note we ended on.

megane
Jun 20, 2008



Man, the Frost Shepherds sure know their timing.

Was fun, I think it went pretty well! I'll write some more when I've had a chance to think about it.

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005
Probation
Can't post for 34 minutes!


Alright, first crack at some thoughts! First of all: I've never played this before and I thought it was really neat. I found the map-making aspect was a bit too cluttered for me, but I think that's just because I prefer a cohesive art style for these types of games and that I'm crazy! Second: after the debate about using Gods as a resource in the beginning, I couldn't believe how compelling a byline they made during the game. One thing I was worried about before playing is that someone would have a strong idea and everyone else would be forced to go along with it, but I think the whole 'playing the village' thing made it easy not to get particularly attached to any specific character or plot thread.

I was also wondering what the point of long projects were - after all, the person who started them gets to finish them, so how does that work with group play? Over the course of the game I understood; on some projects, letting it run long allowed the village to change, changing the context of the project and tweaking the logical outcome. Neat.

I thought things were going to go much worse from the middle point - the unanimous decision to cast away the gods was chilling, and I was worried we were headed down a dark path... but we pretty much didn't? We just determined the gods weren't keeping up their end of the bargain and threw them away, a decision that I think was beneficial in the long run even if we did lose a few members. I think by the end the village was beginning to find its feet again, and the integration of the remnants of the Jackals was a good sign.

Also, for the record, I think the Frost Shepherds were piloting the 'white bird' and they are friendly and didn't laser blast us to death.

Tyrannosaurus
Apr 12, 2006


Dog Kisser posted:

We just determined the gods weren't keeping up their end of the bargain and threw them away

I would never have predicted that happening. Great stuff.

My initial reluctance towards gods being a resource was both practical and conceptual. Practically speaking, I didn't think it would work. Not as I interpreted Megane's post (which, admittedly, I was wrong about). As for conceptually... I've played quite a few of these games at this point. Given the post-apocalyptic we're-uneducated-villagers-just-trying-to-survive vibe that most communities take on, gods tend to showup anyway. I was afraid that as a resource it was going to be overly conducive to lazy writing. Oh the gods are doing this or Oh the gods are doing that or Its all because of the gods and blah blah blah blah. It's really easy to write like that and I thought it was going to be boring and I was wrong. It was rad.

Something else I thought was cool was that we never fell apart as a community. I'm not sure I've seen that happen before. And not only did we avoid a civil war, it never felt like we were even close to approaching one. Maybe because we were too busy waging a war on the divine. Maybe because we established the volatile nature of the storms and we had to keep rebuilding shelter so we didn't have time to get mad at one another. Maybe a little bit of both. I don't know.

Our fights were all external fights. And even then, very little actual fighting. Lots of exploration and storytelling through worldbuilding. Nice.

The four posts of just "Death to the Gods" was powerful.

At the start of the game, I assumed we were going to go south. I thought we might explore the insides of the island but it seems like we made one or two ventures into the jungle and realized "Well this loving sucks let's not go in here" and stuck to the coast.

I felt like we, as players, were all on the same page. Nothing felt rogue or out of place.

Beautiful time to end. Thank you, Dog Kisser for the words.

I'd love to hear what other people think.

***

And now some speculation:

The Parish -- I think the Parish are a cargo cult. I think they're the descendants of the people who-- when the waters rose or the tsunami hit or whatever went down to end the world-- were able to escape to the upper floors of the Scrapers. However, once there, they were trapped. They waited desperately for a rescue that never came. They dreamed of a white plane that would take them back to the mainland, to safety, to humanity. And as time passed, this white plane transformed into a white bird and the hope for rescue grew into a fevered worship of a concept that had been lost.

Which is all absolutely cool as gently caress to me.

The White Bird -- I don't think the White Bird is related to the Frost Shepherds (who I'll talk about in a minute). I think the White Bird is a drone. In my head, the drone searches for old, possibly dangerous technology and then alerts [something?] which comes to salvage it. Now whether this something is a group of human salvagers doing everything manually or this is a WALL-E type last second save-the-world technology protocol I don't know. But, yeah, that's how I think the Vessel disappeared. The drone dinged it and it was taken away. And then the drone flew off in search of other poo poo.

What happened to the Star-Watchers -- I don't think this is speculation, I think we all probably agree that they Moana'd their way off to a new home. Why? Why not? The island is dangerous as hell. Man-eaters and storms and poison water. Not a bad call on their part.

What happened to the Parish -- They accidentally killed themselves. In my head, they went nuts when they saw the White Bird. It was like Jesus showing up. It was all the prophecies, it was the prophecy coming true. When the drone left the island, they excitedly grabbed their wings and they followed it. And, eventually, they drowned. They couldn't keep up and they were too far to turn around.

The Frost Shepherds -- I don't know who the Frost Shepherds are. I agree with Dog Kisser in that I don't believe they swooped in and blasted us out of the sky. That doesn't seem to fit at all. I'm not sure they are really a "they," though. Maybe they are less a group of people and more a massive school of fish or a new flock of migrating birds. And then shortly after we see them, on the highest peak of our island home, we see snow for the first time. Just a little. But enough that we then give the Frost Shepherds their name.

That feels the most thematically appropriate to me. Especially given how our game ended and the note it ended on. We are not launched into a new war. We are not enslaved by beings far more advanced than ourselves. For our community, the Frost Shepherds are the end of our Quiet Year and the beginning of a new us.

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005
Probation
Can't post for 34 minutes!


quote:

Beautiful time to end. Thank you, Dog Kisser for the words.

I'm glad they resonated with you guys, though I of course didn't know that I'd have the final post. I had a feeling it would be, but it was just random chance that it worked out. It was satisfying to see the contempt melt away, too. Like the whole village just taking a breath and reorienting themselves faced with a new vantage point. Contempt is one of those things I wasn't really feeling prior to playing either. I understood the concept for it, but I was worried voicing contempt at all would allow people to keep grudges and try to counteract stuff they didn't like. But the few times it was gained and lost in the game, I got it. It spoke more to the contempt and anxiety felt in the village to any of the players' personal attachment. Interesting mechanic.

quote:

The Parish -- I think the Parish are a cargo cult. I think they're the descendants of the people who-- when the waters rose or the tsunami hit or whatever went down to end the world-- were able to escape to the upper floors of the Scrapers. However, once there, they were trapped. They waited desperately for a rescue that never came. They dreamed of a white plane that would take them back to the mainland, to safety, to humanity. And as time passed, this white plane transformed into a white bird and the hope for rescue grew into a fevered worship of a concept that had been lost.

Which is all absolutely cool as gently caress to me.
Yeah, I envisioned them as something similar. Maybe more technologically advanced, as the automated systems of the place took care of mundane survival stuff the village didn't have access to, but no more knowledgeable about anything important about the past. Like they still understood that they were dealing with technology and not magic, but growing increasingly ritualistic about it, especially as the knowledge about the specifics of how things works died with people who knew them. And yeah, the white bird was something outside of them, something they knew wasn't a 'god' but may as well have been for all the hope and anguish it inspired in them.

quote:

The White Bird -- I don't think the White Bird is related to the Frost Shepherds (who I'll talk about in a minute). I think the White Bird is a drone. In my head, the drone searches for old, possibly dangerous technology and then alerts [something?] which comes to salvage it. Now whether this something is a group of human salvagers doing everything manually or this is a WALL-E type last second save-the-world technology protocol I don't know. But, yeah, that's how I think the Vessel disappeared. The drone dinged it and it was taken away. And then the drone flew off in search of other poo poo.
Yeah, I figured it for a drone too. Passed over every once in a while in a pattern, which led me to think of it like that. Naturally unaware of anything worshipping it, for some fun dramatic irony. The idea that IT removed the Vessel is a clever one. I had no particular idea in mind for that, and this is as good a speculation as any!

quote:

What happened to the Star-Watchers -- I don't think this is speculation, I think we all probably agree that they Moana'd their way off to a new home. Why? Why not? The island is dangerous as hell. Man-eaters and storms and poison water. Not a bad call on their part.
Yeah, that seemed like a sensible action on their part. It was nice that they were friendly enough to us, and not some external opposition force. They were almost a mirror of us, a different path we could have taken to respond to all this stuff in our world, to the white bird and all. I don't think I personally ever interacted with them, but I liked that they were there.

quote:

What happened to the Parish -- They accidentally killed themselves. In my head, they went nuts when they saw the White Bird. It was like Jesus showing up. It was all the prophecies, it was the prophecy coming true. When the drone left the island, they excitedly grabbed their wings and they followed it. And, eventually, they drowned. They couldn't keep up and they were too far to turn around.
Aw, probably. In my head they left during the storm, riding the winds to follow the bird... but yeah, they probably died. And that's fine too - they were tired of stagnating up there, and knew if they didn't take the step and leap they would be stuck up there forever. I figure they made contact to have someone to bequeath their artifacts and whatnot to once they were gone, in an echo of the way the Star-Watchers had.

quote:

The Frost Shepherds -- I don't know who the Frost Shepherds are. I agree with Dog Kisser in that I don't believe they swooped in and blasted us out of the sky. That doesn't seem to fit at all. I'm not sure they are really a "they," though. Maybe they are less a group of people and more a massive school of fish or a new flock of migrating birds. And then shortly after we see them, on the highest peak of our island home, we see snow for the first time. Just a little. But enough that we then give the Frost Shepherds their name.

That feels the most thematically appropriate to me. Especially given how our game ended and the note it ended on. We are not launched into a new war. We are not enslaved by beings far more advanced than ourselves. For our community, the Frost Shepherds are the end of our Quiet Year and the beginning of a new us.
Yeah, I can buy that. Not some opposing force, just something that maybe even came by every winter re-contextualized by the experiences we had in the Quiet Year.

UnCO3
Feb 11, 2010

Ye gods!


A few thoughts while I have a moment:
I think the Vessel may have been dormant rather than dead, and our interactions and the storm eventually reactivated it, including some kind of autopilot or simple AI that plotted it on a course for the safer depths to hibernate again. It seems more likely that it's an advanced piece of technology like the white bird, since the sea levels rose and yet the Vessel is found in a shallow area that wouldn't have been covered until (relatively) recently (and the Vessel-making facility was level with the current sea), so it couldn't have been too old.

As for the white bird, I think it's on a collision course - again, on some kind of autopilot, whether or not it was inhabited. It flew North to South on a course that occasionally intersected with the community given the rotation of the earth and didn't interact with anything, except it was running out of power, dropping lower and lower, and would have eventually hit the surface.

I really like the Parish as an accidentally-suicidal cargo cult waiting for rescue from the sky, and yeah, I figured the Star-watchers just upped and left.

Tricky Dick Nixon
Jul 26, 2010

The body is but a vessel for the soul, a puppet which bends to the soul's tyranny. And lo, the body is not eternal, for it must feed on the flesh of others, lest it return to the dust from whence it came. Therefore must the soul deceive, despise and murder men.


Feel a bit self-conscious posting here when I wasn't a player, but I started reading this about a week ago when I started being active in TGR again, and it was genuinely one of the more emotionally affecting stories I've read in a long time. The Quiet Year works really well from a player standpoint in getting invested, but this also worked as someone completely unrelated reading it, and I was constantly checking in to see what would happen to the village next. The ending in particular happening right after the villagers got access to the Parish flying machines evoked a really wonderful picture of the young children's happiness coming back at the sight of their fellow folk gliding back from the Scrapers. Thought I'd share that, apologies for butting in!

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Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005
Probation
Can't post for 34 minutes!


Heck, no need to apologize, it's awesome that you enjoyed it!

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