Lots of things going on here, so:

  1. Pacing – that is, the exclusive control the GM has over timing in-game events compared to real-world time – is perhaps the GM tool that has the best “emotional impact to simplicity of use” ratio. Most GMs just get it, after they run a game or two, they just need to realise they have this control. (This intuitively also makes it a bit difficult to both teach and learn the more complicated aspects of this control, but that’s how it is)
  2. Anyway. Dramatic Task for the win!
  3. It’s good that Rotem got her “psychic” Crystal again just in time, right? Well. Technically, Good Fellow’s theme is about receiving mental waves, not broadcasting (check its description in the post here). However, between the panels she convinced Nadav that she can “reverse the polarity” with a power stunt (costing her a Benny), and he said, sure, but you roll with -2. Thankfully, because she’s a Veteran Agent using a Novice Crystal, she has +2 (the difference between your Rank and the Crystal), showing that a more experienced Agent is able to do more cool and daring stuff with Crystals. The rules work as intended, yay!
  4. The players get to choose actions and roll for the NPCs. Nadav even gives them Team Contessa’s character sheets. This is a declaration – these people are now with you, not against you (in general); you not only know their stats, you even control them.
  5. Rotem is being an excellent player by making an in-character choice for her NPC, despite its potential to hinder the group’s effort. She places drama above utility, and she allows herself to do so because of the most important word in the last sentence, potential. A Complication is not a binary event, just like the Dramatic Task’s resolution doesn’t hinge on a single roll, and this  declaration by Contessa is meant as the start of a dramatic moment, not the final word. In short, Rotem creates dramatic tension by throwing a hook into the room, trusting her fellow players and GM to catch it and, with her, resolve it. See next page.

Crystal Heart RPG available in print again!

OH boy! You can buy it print-on-demand through DriveThruRPG (we’ve also made the PDF cheaper). In North America you can also buy one of the 20 or so last copies from the original print run through Noble Knight Games, and in the UK and Europe it’s still available through Modiphius.

The Crystal Heart RPG is a 216 pages book based on Savage Worlds (of course), allowing you to play in the Crystal Heart world with allll of the rules and Crystals and details you’ll need. Also check out the one-shot adventures and add-ons like the custom-made Adventure Deck and the Living in Syn expansion! Lots of VTT options as well. See it all here.