System Recommendation: Single Player Horror - Myth-Weavers


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System Recommendation: Single Player Horror

   
System Recommendation: Single Player Horror

Hello everyone!

I am currently looking for system recommendations, the game which may or may not be hitting the game ads soon is focused on running roughly three players through a solo adventure with occasional points of interaction. Although these are few and far between. The game is horror based, very much inspired (perhaps stolen) from Silent Hill. Particular the second installment which is heavy in the psychological horror department.

So far my decided system is Chronicles of Darkness (Mortal) with some things from Hurt Locker. This is mainly due to the fact that dice pools even on a skill matchup of 5+ dice, still, have a better chance to fail rolls than say Call of Cthulu which is the reason I have it above CoC. So all in all, I am looking at GUMSHOE's Fear Itself as a possibility. But I wonder in the infinite wisdom of the weave perhaps there is some other system I am missing.
  • Heavy on horror, preferably psychological horror.
  • Mechanics to track a deteriorating psychological condition and/or fear in general.
  • A system that's modern, and the character are standard humans.
  • The more against the player the better.
  • The games more geared to exploration, puzzle, and roleplaying than combat. There will be combat, but running away is usually the best option.
  • Finally, works well with a solo player and GM. Most of the time the player will be isolated.

You're already looking at Gumshoe. Pick up Gumshoe One-to-one, the single-player variation of the Gumshoe system.

Not many horror tabletop games are made to be solo friendly quite honestly.

Chill is a good horror game but it goes with the assumption that while it will be hard, the players will eventually survive at the end of the day. Unlike CoC which pretty much goes with the assumption that all the investigators are going to fail. So depends really on what you mean all odds stacked against the player, chill will probably do the job alright, unless you want them to lose, then chill isn't a good suggestion.

You could probably do Kult too...but well, Kult is very old, so might not be easy to get it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orpheus View Post
Hello everyone!

I am currently looking for system recommendations, the game which may or may not be hitting the game ads soon is focused on running roughly three players through a solo adventure with occasional points of interaction. Although these are few and far between. The game is horror based, very much inspired (perhaps stolen) from Silent Hill. Particular the second installment which is heavy in the psychological horror department.

So far my decided system is Chronicles of Darkness (Mortal) with some things from Hurt Locker. This is mainly due to the fact that dice pools even on a skill matchup of 5+ dice, still, have a better chance to fail rolls than say Call of Cthulu which is the reason I have it above CoC.

You think that PCs in CoC routinely get a 90,97% odds of succeeding? These are the odds of rolling at least one 8+ on 5d10 and it only gets lower with more dice.

Quote:
So all in all, I am looking at GUMSHOE's Fear Itself as a possibility. But I wonder in the infinite wisdom of the weave perhaps there is some other system I am missing.
  • Heavy on horror, preferably psychological horror.
  • Mechanics to track a deteriorating psychological condition and/or fear in general.
  • A system that's modern, and the character are standard humans.
  • The more against the player the better.
  • The games more geared to exploration, puzzle, and roleplaying than combat. There will be combat, but running away is usually the best option.
  • Finally, works well with a solo player and GM. Most of the time the player will be isolated.
That's an interesting list of requirements, especially the "failalot" one.
But take a look at this free game and decide for yourself.

I mean if you want to absolutely guarantee that the players fail, use Dread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AsenRG View Post
You think that PCs in CoC routinely get a 90,97% odds of succeeding? These are the odds of rolling at least one 8+ on 5d10 and it only gets lower with more dice.


That's an interesting list of requirements, especially the "failalot" one.
But take a look at this free game and decide for yourself.
You are correct, the claim is outrageous now looking at it. Also a system around snuff films, the concept alone is honestly out of my comfort zone.

@Raveled; currently looking at GUMSHOE One-to-One.

@readyplayer; I've never heard of Chill. I will certainly give it a look into.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orpheus View Post
You are correct, the claim is outrageous now looking at it. Also a system around snuff films, the concept alone is honestly out of my comfort zone.
Glad we agree on the probabilities at least.

And well, I haven't run Snuff: the Downloads of Death*, but there's no reason to keep the "snuff movies" angle. It's basically a game about horrific murderers chasing a group of victims. Which describes a whole lot of horror movies.
(The snuff movies part only comes later, once a PC survives).

The reason I recommend it is that the game actually gives different skills to the killer and the victims, with the victims getting shafted in comparison. The best way to describe the difference without quoting the system is that the victims are cattle, while the killers are predators.
You can replace the killer stats with anything that suits a supernatural menace, too, or whatever you've got in mind, by simply reskinning.
But the point is, you asked for a game where the cards are stacked as much as possible against the players.
And in this game, the players and the menace are actually drawing from different decks. If anything, one of them gets a tarot deck drawn by a hammer horror artist, while the other is getting a regular deck.
You can hardly get it more stacked than that!
Granted, the players can still run. It's recommended, and it's somewhat equal.
Which is also something that you asked for.

Of course, you decide what is in your comfort zone. But that's my best recommendation that you're less likely to get from other posters. I'm intosmall and obscure games.


*Not "as written", at least, because I have little interest in the concept. I used it for a fantasy one-shot once, where the normal people got the skillset of the victims, and the professional adventurers got the skillset of the murderers They were a mixed group, but they all had to avoid a common menace.
It went reasonably well.

Orpheus, just stick with Chronicles of Darkness (Mortal). You know the system extremely well and can run it as well as (or better than) anyone I've come across. It fits the requirements that you've listed above. As you have shown in an earlier game, you can very much set the mood for such a game as you describe. It's the GM who makes a horror game scary (and you have done so before). You don't need mechanics for that. Go with what you know and are comfortable with. I have no doubt that the players will be creeped out by it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bornite View Post
Orpheus, just stick with Chronicles of Darkness (Mortal). You know the system extremely well and can run it as well as (or better than) anyone I've come across. It fits the requirements that you've listed above. As you have shown in an earlier game, you can very much set the mood for such a game as you describe. It's the GM who makes a horror game scary (and you have done so before). You don't need mechanics for that. Go with what you know and are comfortable with. I have no doubt that the players will be creeped out by it.
I did not manage to see this until now. Thank you Bornite, I am most likely going to try a new system for my own enjoyment but I am happy to see your opinion being someone who has experienced my early horror beginnings. I hope you are doing well, and I still hold Heart of Darkness: Orphanage near and dear in my heart.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orpheus View Post
I did not manage to see this until now. Thank you Bornite, I am most likely going to try a new system for my own enjoyment but I am happy to see your opinion being someone who has experienced my early horror beginnings. I hope you are doing well, and I still hold Heart of Darkness: Orphanage near and dear in my heart.
Just saying what I think. That was a good game. I can understand giving a different system a whirl. Sometimes different is fun. I'll have to keep an eye out for that game.

As an aside, how about you coming up with another Innocents game? It could be a lot of fun.







 

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