On March 27, 2014 Sam, Nat and Joshua gathered at the Board Room. After the owner bullied us (hey we didn’t resist that hard) into playing a cool space board game (what was it called?), Joshua bullied the group into trying out “Shooting the Moon” by Emily Care Boss .
I required that I play the beloved and let Sam and Nat fight over the desirable rolls of ‘suitor 1’ or ‘suitor 2’. After minimal bloodshed we agreed one some solution. As much as I had hoped the night would turn into a session of ‘bros’ gender switching and pushing various role-playing boundaries 😉 we inadvertently all that excitement by concocting a fairly abstract romance in which I, as the beloved played a hot sexy new tech and gaming startup and the boys played large corporate interests both intent on winning me as “the prize”. I was a company called Counterfate Revolution in partial homage to Sam’s latest prototype storytelling game (Counterfate) . Looking across the Boardroom my eyes lit upon some people at another table playing something called Revolution.
Sam’s character was meant to portray the dullest and oldest of tech behemoths with social media thrown in. Kinda if IBM, Microsoft and Facebook all merge (if they haven’t already). He was called V.A.T. Technologies, the joke is that V.A.T. stands for Value Added Technology but no one remembers, so they’ve grown another ‘technology” I can see this turning latter into VATT Tech Corp down the road… and so on and so on. Trust me it feels good to think you’re as clever as I felt like I thought I was that night!
Nat played “the circle” a kind of warmer and fuzzier version of Anonymous with only the most altruistic of goals.
Story? Yeah there was plenty of that. Shooting the moon works by rewarding players for advancing the story with dice which they roll to gain points and add positive aspects to their characters descriptions. There are further incentives to accept certain setbacks and negative aspects in return for more dice. While the rules call for three complete rounds we wrapped up with only a single round. Frankly by that point, due to aggressive play there was so little left of the main characters I’m curious about whether anyone would have survived 3 rounds. Lots of fun was had. Our reading of the game seemed to really open the door up to satire and smart-alecky play. Perhaps with different settings and character choices one develops more intimate and authentic narratives. But I doubt it. Emily Care Boss has published other games including “Under My Skin” which I believe are more in that vein. Shooting the Moon is prettly clearly marketted as light hearted fun. And we definitely got what we expected.