Posts Tagged ‘ MADcorp ’


I’ve got a bit of a quandary.

Ok, so most of you probably are aware of MADcorp, my dungeoncrawling game that’s in beta right now. I’ve also been experimenting with using the same system to play a sandboxy campaign that’s not so limited to dungeons — in other words, there’s a world with a bunch of things going on, and the players can choose to involve themselves in these things (in order to try to leverage them to personal gain) or not.

Here’s the thing. A game-unit of MADcorp is one dungeon. short-term success means getting a bunch of valuable shit and getting out with it alive. Long-term success means doing that continually and leveling up the company. When you get to level 20, you win.

With this other idea, a game-unit is resolving a situation (for the moment) into which you’ve inserted yourself. Short-term success means resolving that situation in a manner that nets you some gain (gains come in the form of wealth, fame, infamy, and/or recognizance of deeds by political powers). Long-term success means using those gains to enhance your position in life and the world. When you achieve the position you want (whether that means being able to retire to a private island for the rest of your life, or becoming the King of Kansas, or whatever), you win.

Are you seeing what I’m seeing? Idea #2 has a much better reward system (leveling the company up to level 20 is not nearly as satisfying an end goal as retiring to your own private island forever), which would make it more rewarding, which would make it a better game.

The question is, do I continue with the nearly-done MADcorp and publish it? It’s nearly-done, and this second idea is going to require a lot more work yet (hammering out how wealth, fame, infamy, and deeds work exactly). But the second idea otherwise uses the same system, and is a better game. Do I sell people the not-as-good (but still good) game only to release a better game that not only uses the same system but in fact can encapsulate all the gameplay that could occur in MADcorp?

Maybe MADcorp is a sort of “red box.” Maybe it’s a rip-off. I can’t figure it out.

MADcorp beta testing: get your dungeon on with a baseball bat

The MADcorp beta version is up and running. Anybody who wants in on testing, lemme know.For those of you not familiar with MADcorp, it’s the game of corporate dungeoncrawling horror in a world gone weird. That is, you work for a corporation that delves into abandoned buildings looking for valuable crap. It’s the kind of dungeoncrawling where the dungeon is an environment you can go around in any order you want (i.e. magician’s choices and pallette swapping are cheating), not the kind where a dungeon is a linear/branching sequence of encounters that you’re supposed to “get to the end of.” It’s “horror” in the sense that it’s about horrible things, and tension, and trepidation, rather than being about hack ‘n slash (although there’s plenty of violence). It’s a world gone weird in that there’s magic and ghosts and monsters and shit, and dungeons sometimes don’t follow the laws of geometry or physics, and dungeoneering like this is a viable and legal avenue for business (as far as the law is concerned, what happens in the dungeon stays in the dungeon). The player characters are all pretty much psychotic but also badass, and the game simultaneously celebrates and makes fun of them. It’s very funny, cavalier, and grungy. Overall, it’s a bit like kill puppies for satan meets Lamentations of the Flame Princess Weird Fantasy Roleplaying.

If you wanna know more, please ask here. Also consider searching Story Games (  for threads with “MADcorp” in the title.

If you want in, please email me at marksman45[at]gmail, and put “MADcorp” in the subject somewhere. Please don’t ask for the materials if you aren’t serious about planning to give me feedback. If you’ve got some experience with the alpha version, please try to approach this one fresh: most of the differences are crucial but very subtle, and you might miss them if you don’t put the old stuff out of your mind.

Furthermore, you are free to view, print, download, and distribute the Employee Handbooks whether you playtest or not.

Also: a thing I forgot to address in the “ATTN: Playtesters” part of the text, because I’m a moron. The primary thing (not only, just primary) that needs development at this time is Referee techniques and advice. Which is a big part of why I need other people to get involved, so that I can say, “No, no, you’re doing it wrong, the correct approach is this,” and you can say, “Well maybe you should put that in the book, dipshit,” and I can say, “Huh, I should probably put that in the book, yeah?”