Stéphane Bura – Cúchulainn 10 Minute Pitch
Stephane Bura is another game designer I know from Project Horseshoe. I was thinking about Horseshoe this morning, in fact. I brought some games with me, and in mentioning on to someone on Twitter last night, I had a very strong desire to play Pandemic. At Horseshoe, there were four tables full of game designers playing non-digital games. It was as geeky a geekfest as you’re likely to see.
What has always fascinated me in the story of Cu Chulainn is the dramatic power of geasa. If I’m not mistaken, they’re why he killed his son (I couldn’t confirm this in under 5 minutes. 😉
I’d love to see a game in which characters receive or accept geasa that create apparently unsolvable problems. Breaking a geis would have dire consequences, so it would be a very effective way of creating narrative tension. The game would have to be about honor and fate. You wouldn’t defeat your enemies by force, but by influencing their lives so that they’d have to break their geasa, playing out their own prophesied demise.
A more ambitious design would let you from time to time control a crone or minor deity and place geasa on characters yourself.
It would probably be an adventure game with enough world interaction to allow for various ways of resolving conflicts, with very little emphasis on combat except as a pre-ordained dramatic climax.