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Fiasco Classic
by Ali E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/06/2013 16:26:37

This is a work of genius. Fast, furious, funny and easy to play. Buy this. You won't regret it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco Classic
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Carolina Death Crawl
by Christopher T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/23/2013 12:08:55

We played this with 6 (four players, two swamp ghosts) and it was a complete blast. It went into some pretty dark places and the characters paid in full for their crimes against humanity (and themselves) so I would absolutely not recommend this for anyone under 12 or so. The game is not balanced--- if you know the cards you will be able to figure out pretty quick who is going to 'win,' except for the Swamp Ghost factor-- who are the great equalizer in the game in that they can make sure certain player's characters die during each act. Players who end up as swamp ghosts hold grudges and make those players lose, usually in spectacular fashion. What it adds up to is a frantic and extremely engaging mutual story telling experience. If nothing else, a 3 hour session of this will make your players better at all other RPG's in terms of character development and discourse. I cannot wait for more sets of cards along these lines.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Carolina Death Crawl
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Fiasco Classic
by Stuart C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/10/2013 17:13:00

Very good, very good. The "Replay" section helps clarify play greatly, and so you can find yourself completing your first Fiasco within an hour and a half of opening the book. Great replayability, with plenty of fanmade playlists available online. Well worth the money.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco Classic
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The Fiasco Companion
by Chuck C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/15/2013 17:50:22

If you enjoyed your first game of Fiasco, but feel like didn't quite "get it", or if you just want you next game to be EVEN MORE AWESOME, you want this book. And it reads easily on a tablet.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Fiasco Companion
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The Fiasco Companion
by Jason A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/15/2013 12:25:59

Some great filler information and different ways to attack the fiasco as it develops.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco Classic
by Jason A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/15/2013 12:25:01

Love it! The one thing that's missing from role playing games today is role playing. Fiasco delivers what I originally fell in love with when I started gaming.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco Classic
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Fiasco Classic
by Marc P. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/03/2013 16:07:25

Maybe you've seen Wil Wheaton's Table Top episode, maybe not (if not you might want to check it out, it's fantastic). That's where I first encountered Fiasco, and I'm thankful to Wil for that. Fiasco is a GM-less Role-Playing Game, designed specifically to emulate the kinds of no holds barred disasters as seen in movies from the Cohen Brothers and countless others. Beyond that however, Fiasco presents a way for a small group of freinds to get a role- play experience in a short period of time (one and a half to two hours for three players, longer with more), with no need for a pre-planned session and no requirement for one player to act as GM.

Set up requires only a handful of dice in two colors and some paper and pencils (I find that index cards are really damn near perfect for this). Somebody throws a number of dice into the center of the table and using the dice players take turns slowly determining their relationship with the other players to their left and right (each player having two defined relationships), objects, needs, and locations that are relevant to the game. Tables for each are provided as part of a playset (there are a few in the book, and dozens more available for free online). Dice first establish the broad category of a relationship, object, location, or need, then further dice determine the specific detail. Example:

• Player 1 takes up a die showing 5 and decides that the first relationship is going to be one from the Family grouping. • Later Player 2 grabs a die showing 1 and establishes that he and Player 1 are estranged siblings.

• Player 3 takes a die showing 6 and establishes that there is a Need "To Get Even..." • Later on Player 1 takes a die showing 2 and further defines that Need as "To Get Even ... with the one who laughed at you.

The process continues around the table until every player has a relationship with the players to their left and right and there are at least one Need, Object, and Location (more than three players add more Needs, Objects, and Locations, in that order). Once all the dice have been used and/or everybody is satisfied with the setup play begins.

Play takes the form of scenes between two or more players and usually two of the main characters (though sometimes a player may need or want a scene with an NPC character played by somebody else for that scene). The player who's turn it is chooses to either Establish or Resolve. When they Establish the set the scene, stating where, with whom, and why, and then the players play it out. Once complete that other players decide if the scene worked out well for the player or not and assign a die to the player accordingly (if using black and white dice, white are "good" and black are "bad"). Play then continues with the next player.

When a player chooses to Resolve they take a die of the appropriate color and ask the group to Establish the scene for them, with the intended outcome of the scene to be good or bad for their character. Once the group sets the scene it is played out as usual. Regardless of the choice to Establish or Resolve each scene is played out, usually in just a few minutes, and each player gets a total of four scenes that revolve around their character over the course of the game.

After each player has had two turns (and thus two scenes with their character being central to the action) the first Act ends. The remaining dice are rolled and the two players with the highest total on black dice and white dice choose two Tilt aspects to complicate the second Act. Tilt is determined the same as setup with dice being take to determine the category and then the specifics. For instance:

• Mayhem → Misdirected Passion • Innocence → The Wrong Guy Gets Busted • Failure → A Stupid Plan, Executed to Perfection

These Tilt aspects will alter the course of events from the first half and inform the second as the players' character begin (or continue) the downward spiral from "Powerful Ambition" to "Poor Impulse Control", or, to put it another way, well laid plans become a complete clusterf&%k. Scenes played out during the second Act need to be more resolution focused so that the story begins to converge on an end, but apart from that play is generally the same as the first Act with the addition of the Tilt.

Once all the dice are gone and every player has played their parts the game moves to the Aftermath. During the Aftermath we find out just what happened to each character after the events of the story. Players roll their dice (those they got from scenes) and consult the aftermath table, which is generally grim, and often worse, to find out generally how their characters' fare. They then take turns playing a die and narrating a brief montage of scenes (usually just a few sentences) that bring their characters' to their ultimate fate.

That's the gist of play in a simplified manner. With three players I've taken part in half a dozen games and none of them were longer than two hours including setup (even the first game where I was teaching the game was only barely two hours). Things are fast and furious with a focus on an entertaining story that twists and turns (often twisting out of the control of the players). The numerous play set options available online mean that nearly any time period, setting, and genre are available from Superheroes to Suburban Housewives.

Closing Thoughts With genuinely simple and quick mechanics to setup, and direct play and a strong focus on role-playing and improvisation, Fiasco is a perfect game to fill in after a short session of your weekly RPG, or to fill an entire evening with multiple plays. The book is excellently written, conveying the rules clearly and providing a bunch of great advice on what to look for during set up and play to ensure that your game becomes a true Fiasco. The wide variety of FREE play sets available online mean that there are near endless replay options.

Rating: 100% - Pretty much perfect. This game is everything a lite RPG should strive to be, and I find that the more I play the more I enjoy it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco: American Disasters
by Jim H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/27/2012 14:36:33

The thing to keep in mind regarding Fiasco: American Disasters is, "It's only five bucks." It's not brimful of content like The Fiasco Companion was, but it's cheaper. You get 8 pages of "Trainwreck Mode" rules for running mini-campaigns, a one-page Trainwreck-Mode filmography, and then 31 pages devoted to the three new playsets, including the typically gorgeous playset cover illustrations. As a nice touch, the Poppleton Mall playset includes a mall floor plan. The remaining pages are front and end-matter.

The playsets themselves seem top-notch. I haven't tried them yet, but on reading they stand up well to good playsets I have played. Rainbow Mountain especially repays study for how, with its repeated mentions of literal farmer's daughter Cindy Peppering, a playset designer can bake quite a lot of narrative...encouragement into a playset's "random" elements.

But I really bought this for the Trainwreck-Mode rules, and on a read-through the Trainwreck-Mode rules are...okay. They're warranted for up to about three sessions of play. So don't buy F:AD thinking you're going to be able to get four seasons of Breaking Bad-like roleplaying out of it. They're also a little sketchy. I'd have paid more for more depth, such as:

  • Trainwreck-tuned Tilt and Aftermath tables
  • The same sort of examples of play we got in Fiasco and Fiasco Companion

I'd love to see Bully Pulpit revisit Trainwreck-mode play as a full-bore supplement. In the meantime, what's here will get us started. And considering the price and the excellence of the playsets, this existing supplement is very much worth your money.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco: American Disasters
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Fiasco: American Disasters
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 12/21/2012 07:42:39

One of the issues with Fiasco, particularly if you've been raised on more traditional role-playing, is that by its very nature, a game is a one-shot. If that has been holding you back, this might be worth a look... because it starts by providing a mechanism whereby a single session can be expanded into something longer. Called the 'Trainwreck' it gives suggestions for either linking several Playsets using common characters and feeding off events to provide up to three play sessions or - and this is where it really gets interesting - using the game's natural momentum and untied loose ends to agree not to finish the story at the end of the session but to get together again and carry on!

As well as providing the core idea, there are a lot of concrete suggestions as to how to make a multi-session game happen, from making the actual decision to the mechanics of making it work: what you need to keep and carry over and how to go about it all. If this idea appeals, you are now equipped with the tools required to ensure that the process flows smoothly and the feeling of continuity is maintained.

To get you started, the three Playsets that make up the rest of this product could well be linked into Trainwreck mode and you are shown how: what you ought to carry over from each session to the next. They'll work equally well as conventional one-shot games of course, and one of the keys is not to force a Trainwreck but to be open to the possibility and know what to do if it seems appropriate. There are also suggestions as to other Playsets which might lend themselves to the process.

But there's more. Stringing Playsets together into trilogies is but one way of having yourself a Trainwreck. Your common thread can be a theme rather than specific elements and characters, a style of play named the docudrama. This works well with historical Playsets, tracing something across history - one suggestion given is to follow a set of letters with some explosive content as they cause fiasco after fiasco. Again, there are several suggestions as to suitable extant Playsets that you could use in constructing such a game.

Yet another Trainwreck methodology is the anthology, where the individual sessions are closely-linked as overlapping stories sharing a common element and/or characters, events in each session linking to those in other sessions as well as their own, with the final explosive session bringing everything to a head and drawing a multiplicity of strands together.

Or you can use the same Playset repeatedly to create something akin to a TV series that tells story after story involving the same people, locations and themes. This part of the product rounds off with some generic hints and tips for successful Trainwrecks and a listing of movies that could prove inspirational.

The rest of the work consists of three Playsets, which may be played as conventional individual sessions or used as described above to test out the Trainwreck mode of play. The first, Business Casual, is about the potential for chaos inherent in management decisions, using a logistics company's rollout of 'consumer-centric' operating practices as its medium. It has 'fiasco' written all over it, never mind that being the name of the game!

Next comes Rainbow Mountain, which deals with the tensions that can arise in a commune. And finally, we have Poppleton Mall. Here the mayhem of a large shopping mall in the last few frantic days before Christmas is laid bare (and having just, on the Friday before the holidays, seen my dearly beloved stagger back from the local supermarket, I don't think I want to go there....).

Plenty to enjoy here!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco Classic
by Joe S. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/19/2012 05:35:43

Like many of the reviewers here, I would have to agree that Fiasco is not every gamer's cup of poisoned tea. However, it is not a niche game either, and it's appeal goes beyond the 'narrative only' gamers. Yes, it is a narrative game, much like Prime Time Adventures, Dungeon World and Rapture: The End of Days... but it also appeals to the competitive nature of most gamers. Messing up your friend's characters is just... well... it's just FUN. It's a good value product and perfect for those fill-in-the-gap gaming sessions.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco Classic
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Fiasco Classic
by Stuart M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/03/2012 08:30:57

If you love Prime time Adventures, you will also love Fiasco. I have never laughed so much playing an RPG.

Fiasco can be played in a couple of hours with zero prep making it a fantastic option if a player doesn't show up for a regular game or you are strapped for time. It is also a great option for introducing actors and other theatre folk to role playing as everything is framed in scenes and the game is built to feel like a movie.

There are playsets (kinda like settings) for everything from gangsters in London to American suburban tales.

If you have players that are still stuck in "old-school-loot-and-kill-my-character-is-really-me" mode then this game can really help them evolve to more of a collaborative story building style of play.

I believe Fiasco belongs in every role player's kit bag. It's that good.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco: Touring Rock Band
by Jordan H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/31/2012 15:55:26

This setting was fantastic for our group. Playing through it as 3 band mates with unreasonable requests on their comeback tour and two lame radio djs (Fatman and the Cougar) was a lot of fun for everyone involved.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco: Touring Rock Band
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Fiasco Classic
by Harry T. J. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/05/2012 00:32:44

I played Fiasco for the first time tonight and I was very impressed. As someone who is not the biggest fan of some of the Gamist aspects of role playing games, it was nice to play a game that puts heavy emphasis on story and character, while leaving the Gamist notions on the back burner.

It was remarkable amounts of fun to play because it didn't require me, the usual GM, to create anything or expend energy building a world. I got to be a player, and had the chance to play on both sides of the screen at the same time. It was nice to be able to have the whole group build the story together, which puts everyone in the mood to do their best to make the game memorable.

Explaining the rules was a little bumpy at first, but once the first round was over, everything was flowing like clockwork. In my opinion, the game system becomes clearer when it is in action, so learning by doing and setting an example through play is the key to a successful first session.

I think that Fiasco isn't a perfect game for all people, but it is a good alternative for folks that want to have a cooperative, fun, and creative evening together.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco Classic
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Fiasco: Gangster London
by Michael H. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 11/11/2011 11:22:49

One of my very favorite playsets, Gangster London really captures the Guy Ritchie type of story - it contains a lot of story-rich, outrageous elements which really helps set up a great fiasco.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco: Gangster London
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Fiasco: Dragon Slayers
by Michael H. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 11/11/2011 11:21:11

I've run the Dragon Slayers playset multiple times for different groups and really enjoy it - it tends to generate very interesting, zany fantasy stories full of the typical D&D cliches and tropes. Overall, I think Dragon Slayers is a bit more of an "advanced" playset though (or maybe intermediate is a better term) because it's set up for the story to unfold after the dragon has been slain, built around the aftermath. As such it requires a bit more preplay discussion to get everyone on the same page and to make sense of some of the elements that can come up during the initial set-up. Overall though I think it's a great playset and is one of the ones I pack for cons.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Fiasco: Dragon Slayers
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