Night Wizard!:Session Play Rules
Session Play Rules
Here are explained the rules necessary to play a session. Many such rules exist. Together. these are known as the Session Play Rules.
- 1 Session Flow
- 2 Preplay
- 3 The Day of the Session
- 3.1 Reading the Preliminary Notice
- 3.2 Reading the Scenario Handout
- 3.3 Creating PCs
- 3.4 Filling Out the Report Sheet
- 3.5 Self-Introduction
- 3.6 Deciding Seats
- 3.7 Deciding PC Connections
- 3.8 Filling out the Session Sheet
- 3.9 Deciding Critical and Fumble Numbers
- 3.10 Synth Level and Combat Attributes
- 3.11 Deciding Money
- 4 The How and Why of Night Wizard: The Probability Distribution of 2d6
- 5 Session Flow
- 5.1 Scenes
- 5.1.1 Appearance and Departure
- 5.1.2 Appearance Judges
- 5.1.3 Continuing a Scene
- 5.1.4 Specifying the Scene Player
- 5.1.5 Scene Opening
- 5.1.6 Designating Companions
- 5.1.7 PCs who Wish to Appear
- 5.1.8 Scene Direction
- 5.1.9 Ending the Scene
- 5.1.10 Backstage Processing
- 5.1.11 Master Scenes
- 5.2 Opening Phase
- 5.3 Middle Phase
- 5.3.1 Meeting and Allying
- 5.3.2 Events
- 5.3.3 Information Gathering
- 5.3.4 Lunar Caskets
- 5.4 Climax Phase
- 5.5 Ending Phase
- 5.6 Concluding Main Play
- 5.1 Scenes
- 6 After Play
In NW2, a single session is divided into Pre Play- the preparatory period, Main Play- the game itself, and After Play- in which experience points are distributed and such.
- Pre Play
Pre Play refers to preparation for the game.
- Main Play
In Main Play, the game itself takes place. Main Play is divided into four phasses- Opening Phase, Middle Phase, Climax Phase, and Ending Phase.
- Opening Phase
The prologue of the scenario. In this phase, the PCs first become involved with events.
- Middle Phase
Events progress as the PCs influence them. The story continues as the PCs try to settle the matter.
- Climax Phase
The PCs confront the people, or enemy, responsible to the events. In most cases, they will fight a battle with powerful enemies.
- Ending Phase
The epilogue of the story.
Each phase is composed of two or more scenes. A scene is a denomination of time within the game that represents that spent in one place. The game itself progresses from scene to scene. For a detailed explanation, please see page 179.
After Main Play has ended, After Play occurs. Experience points are distributed now, but Level Ups do not yet happen. Also, the participants should clean up after the session. After that, it's all over.
This section explains the preparations the GM should make during Pre Play. As the Host Player*, the GM should make various preparations for each session. Though they may be troublesome, they will make the game much more fun. Make the necessary preparations to ensure a smooth session.
The GM is in truth just 'the player who entertains the other players.' It's important to think of the GM as a fellow participant having fun with the game. While they manage the game, guide the story and make the decisions, their labors should not be taken for granted.
Preparing the Scenario
The GM must first choose which scenario to play. If this is your first time playing NW2, consider using one of the scenarios in the Scenario Section of this book. An explanation of how to create an original scenario is on Page 246,
First of all, it's critical that the GM mentally prepare themselves to play. In other words, they must be ready to have fun playing NW2 and do their best to make sure the players have fun too. If they play without this resolution, a gap in expectations may open between them as a result. Also, the game must not be played with the intent of insulting, humiliating or hurting anyone. This is an absolute.
Preparing the Sheets
In NW2, there are a number of kinds of sheets. It's necessary to make copies of some of these sheets. Below are listed the various kinds of sheets and how many copies should be made.
- Battle Sheet (on the back of the cover)
No copies are necessary.
- Character Sheet (at the back of the book)
Each player needs one.
- Report Sheet (Page 208)
Each player needs one.
- Session Sheet (Page 309)
One required per session.
- Scenario Handout (*)
Each player needs one.
Each player should have two dice*.
- Writing materials, etc.
During the game, one will have to write down received damage, character names, and such. The GM should have a black and a red pen.
How to create a Scenario Handout is explained in detail on Page 240. Moreover, the Scenario Handouts of the scenarios published in this book can be used as a reference. Alternately, for simplicity, you may omit the Scenario Handout.
Use 6-sided dice such as can be purchased at a stationary or hobby shop.
Scenario Rules and Table Rules
In addition to the Golden Rule, the GM may specify rules necessary for the Scenario. Rules specific to one Scenario are known as Scenario Rules. These rules will be used during the current Scenario only and not during others. In the same manner, rules used only around one Table are known as Table Rules. These are rules and definitions decided by the GM themselves. They may choose whether to use them on a session-by-session basis.
Players need to prepare for the session as well.
Just like the GM must make things fun for the players, the players must make things fun for the GM and other players. NW2 is a game that cannot harbor malice and interference. It can easily become a tedious waste of time for the other participants. That's why the players must maintain a positive attitude. One should not have the mindset "This had better be fun", but "This will be fun" and- towards the others- "I'll make it fun for them."
If possible, the GM may make arrangements with the players in advance by contacting them over the Internet or such. At this time, the GM may supply them with the scenario handout and the preliminary notice. This may include instructions on which kind of character is suitable for the scenario. The GM may inquire what image* you have of the character you want to play.
Character Decision Chart
When at a loss what a character's personality should be, rolling one using the chart on Page 304 may be of assistance.
The Day of the Session
This section explains how to begin the game session when the appointed day comes.
Reading the Preliminary Notice
The GM should read the preliminary notice aloud. This will inform the players of the basic setting of the scenario. The purpose of the preliminary notice and how to write one are explained on Page 240.
Reading the Scenario Handout
At this time, the GM should distribute the Scenario Handouts - one to each player. They may read the contents out loud* before distributing them. The GM may either choose which player receives which Scenario Handout or allow them to choose.
After the GM has handed out all the notices, it is necessary to create a character to use during the session. The players should be given a character sheet to fill out. Character creation is explained on page 30. If they have already created a character, verify that all necessary information is filled in on the character sheet.
Filling Out the Report Sheet
A Report Sheet should be given to each player, and that information which can currently be written in done so. See below for an illustration. At this stage, the following information can be written down.
The date and the name of the PC, the GM, the scenario and such.
Write down the character's "Endurance." This is their maximum HP. At the beginning of the game, HP is equal to Endurance. Even if HP is recovered during the session, it cannot exceed the character's Endurance.
Write down the character's "Magic Power." This is their maximum MP. Even if MP is recovered during the session, it cannot exceed the character's Magic Power.
Write down the Connection as listed on the Scenario Handout.
Each player should introduce their PC. One should know the companions with whom they are adventuring today a little.
Now, choose where everyone will sit. The GM should sit in the center, lengthwise, of the table. Where the players sit may be decided by the GM. If a method is desired, seat the players of PCs with a higher Initiative* on the left.
On most occasions, TRPGs are played by sitting at a table. Commonly, the GM sits on the narrow side of the table and the players on the sides, like a ring centering on them. In NW2, it's recommended that the GM sits on the long side with players surrounding them. This is for the purpose of managing the Battle Sheet. The Battle Sheet can be found on the back of the cover and is B4 size. Upon this sheet, the position of PCs and enemies is shown with markers as they move around. One can imagine the battle from this representation. When sitting on the narrow side of the table, the GM is too far from the Battle Sheet to manage it effectively. In addition, in NW2, PCs are introduced individually and will often take individual actions. Over the course of the session, the GM will often talk to players alone. Having the players at a short (or long) distance may make this convenient.
Deciding PC Connections
The PCs are Night Wizards, and Night Wizards share bonds with each other- call them destiny, or karma. Because of this, PCs may have connections* with each other. This is a PC Connection. The GM may decide while planning or continuing the scenario to form a connection between two PCs. The connection can be chosen by ROC from the table on Page 73. Ignore the NPCs written in the connection table and use only the relation. This relation* exists mutually. After choosing the connection via ROC, verify the consent of both players of the characters involved. Those players should then write the connection in the Connections section of their Record Sheet.
Filling out the Session Sheet
After deciding Connections, write each character name and their respective class and Initiative down on the Session Sheet.
Deciding Critical and Fumble Numbers
Each PC should roll 2d6 and decide their Critical and Fumble Numbers. If the Fumble Number rolled is the same as the Critical Number, then roll again. Critical and Fumble Numbers can be changed by using the CF Modifier. Each point of CF Modifier allows the Critical Number or Fumble Number to be increased or decreased by one. However, your Critical Number and Fumble Number can never be the same. For instance, say your Critical Number is 5, your Fumble Number is 11 and your CF Modifier is 2. In this situation, you could change your Critical Number to 7, or your Critical Number to 4 and your Fumble Number to 12. Enter your Critical and Fumble Numbers into the appropriate row of your Record Sheet.
Synth Level and Combat Attributes
At this time, one should decide their attribute bonuses. For instance, if a character is Synth Level 3, they may divide 3 bonus points among their Combat Attributes. After doing so, write these down in the General Level row under Combat Attributes on your Character Sheet.
Now, decide how much money each PC has on hand. Roll 2d6 for each PC. This is not a Judge. The PCs have 2d6 x 10,000 v. on hand.
This is an optional rule. The GM may decide whether to adopt it. If the GM wishes, the roll to determine spending money may be treated as a judge. In the case of a Fumble, this money is borrowed. Moreover, if players wish, they may borrow up to Luck x 100,000 v. from the Wizards' Credit Union.
The GM will see to it that all loans are repaid. If they have not been repaid by After Play, they will automatically be deducted from experience points. For instance, say that 600,000 v. was borrowed and not repaid by After Play. In this case, three experience points would automatically be used to repay the loan. If the character's experience points are wholly exhausted, the GM may wish to record the outstanding loan on the character sheet and continue repayment next session. However, even outstanding debts don't have interest*.
The How and Why of Night Wizard: The Probability Distribution of 2d6
|Kyouka-chan:||Rolling 2d6 has 36 possible outcomes.
For instance, one can roll a two only when both dice show a roll of one. Thus, 1/36. In percent, 2.7%.
|Maken-kun:||That ain't much.|
|Kyouka-chan:||Conversely, many outcomes result in a seven. 6/36, or 1/6. In percent, 16.6%.|
|Maken-kun:||And to either side of that, 13.9%... not a big change.|
|Kyouka-chan:||Critical Numbers should be close to 7, and Fumble Numbers far from it, the lower the better.
That's common sense for a wizard. Now then, we've prepared a chart of the probability distribution of 2d6,
|Maken-kun:||Oh, how enlightening.|
|Kyouka-chan:||Well, it comes down the luck of the dice in the end.|
|Maken-kun:||Hey, don't say that!|
|Kyouka-chan:||Maken-kun, don't turn your eyes away from the truth.|
|Maken-kun:||It's okay, my solid-forged attributes shall not betray me.
Stop it, I don't need your sympathy.
Main Play is where the scenario really takes place. As was described above, Main Play is divided into four Phases. These phases each consist of multiple Scenes. First, let's explain what a Scene is.
A session in NW2 proceeds in time units known as Scenes. They have a similar meaning to a scene in a movie or TV show. The story of the session continues through these 'scenes', outlining the scenario as it does.
Appearance and Departure
To participate in a Scene, it is first necessary to appear in that Scene. Think of Scenes like the stage of a theatre. Unless the actors (PCs) appear on stage, they cannot do anything. Conversely, those participating in a Scene may need to depart. With the GM's permission, characters can always depart from a Scene. The GM may optionally decide who may appear in the Scene. Of course, they may optionally appear or depart (with permission) over time as the Scene takes place as well.
The GM may have players who are not required to appear in a Scene perform a Judge based on Luck in order to appear. Based on the situation, the GM may decide the difficulty themselves. If they have no idea, a difficulty of 12 should suffice.
When to Appearance Judge
With the GM's permission, an Appearance Judge can be done at any time. However, it must be done on an individual basis among PCs, and anew for each scene.
If one of a character's Connections has appeared in the Scene, their Appearance Judge receives a modifier of +3.
Continuing a Scene
There are steps via which a Scene proceeds. They are explained below.
Specifying the Scene Player
The GM will specify the players whom the Scene is to focus on. These are the "Scene Players." The GM should declare these players at the beginning of the Scene. They may choose to appear in the Scene freely.
The GM first declares the beginning of the scene, and briefly explain its setting and purpose. A lengthy explanation is not necessary. Saying a few words to the Scene Players should suffice.
The Scene Players may now choose PCs to appear in the scene at the same time as them. These are known as Companions. As long as they have everyone's approval, any number of Companions is fine. Of course, in the case of a scene initiated by a GM, they have final word on who may be a Companion. If the GM wishes, NPCs may be appointed as Companions as well.
PCs who Wish to Appear
Other players who wish their PCs to appear in the Scene may do so with the GM's permission. The GMs should decide based on the situation if it is possible for them to appear in the scene. If it is possible for them to appear, the PCs should perform an Appearance Judge. If necessary, the Appearance Judge may be skipped.
The GM may direct the scene as necessary.
Ending the Scene
The GM may declare that the Scene is over at any time. When the ecene has ended, backstage processing (described later) occurs, the scenario moves on, and the next Scene Players are chosen. --> Below are some reasons that a Scene may end.
- The Scene Players have departed.
- The location or time of the scene has changed greatly.
- The GM thinks it should end.
- There is nothing more to do in this Scene.
It's not necessary to go into detail about the reason. When the tension has faded, it's a good idea to switch the scene and thus the mood.
PCs who did not appear in a scene* can have either their HP or MP naturally restored. This is known as Backstage Processing. When the GM ends each scene, PCs who did not appear in it may indicate which they would like restored. The process of natural restoration is detailed on Page 198.
When their Appearance Judge fails, naturally, characters won't appear in a scene.
In some Scene, the Scene Players may be NPCs or there may be no Scene Players at all. These are known as Master Scenes. No one is required to appear in a Master Scene, but the GM may arbitrarily decide who does.
The Opening Phase is the introduction of the game. In other words, the characters arrive to deal with some kind of unnatural incident specified by the scenario. The Opening Phase hints at the nature of this event.
Reading the Preliminary Notice
At the beginning of the Opening Phase, the GM should read the Preliminary Notice aloud once more. This will remind everyone of the image of the session.
The Opening Phase is an ideal time to have the PCs each establish indivisual Scenes. They may decide to seek a resolution to the incident, be ordered to do so, or be involved in it directly. Of course, depending on the scenario, several characters can be introduced at once.
During the Middle Phase, the incident on which the scenario is based is elaborated upon and the story progresses. The Middle Phase is often divided into the three segments below.
Meeting and Allying
As Night Wizards investigating the same incident, the PCs will encounter each other. They may exchange information, or if possible, join forces.
The story advances in the Middle Phase when Events occur. For instance, these may consist of the PCs fighting and defeating enemies, or enemy intrigue being revealed.
The enemy the PCs are pursuing is often mysteriously hidden. To dispel this mystery, it is necessary to gather information. The PCs must use their own knowledge or connections to solve the mystery. After doing to, the enemy will be revealed and can be confronted in the Climax Phase.
Information Gathering Scene
A scene in which information is gathered may be directed as the GM wishes. The PCs may appear at their players' discretion. Judges to gather information may be performed using any attribute. The degree of difficulty varies.
A Difficulty Level of 12~15 is typical. If many of the PCs succeed at this Judge, an ample amount of information will be gathered. Of course, the definition of "many" should be adjusted depending on how many players are participating in the scenario and session. Once the appearing PCs have all performed a Judge, the Scene should end. The number of Scenes spent gathering necessary information may be changed at the GM's discretion.
Instead of performing an information gathering Judge, a Connection may be used. See Page 242 for a detailed explanation.
Those opposed to the World Barrier- the Emulators- appear using a technique, well known to Night Wizards and other practitioners of Magical Warfare. This technique is the creation of a temporary barrier. These barriers, Lunar Caskets, are spaces in which cause and effect does not apply. To put it simply, events within them have no effect upon the world outside. Thus, anything can be done without consequence within a Lunar Casket.
Rules of Lunar Caskets
As the PCs are all Wizards, they all possess the Special Ability of "Lunar Casket." By using this ability, a Lunar Casket can be created. When a Scene takes place within a Lunar Casket, all Innocents are helpless. For them, it's a state similar to dreaming. In concrete terms, they are extras. When the GM or the PCs decide to construct a Lunar Casket, any Innocents within will be as if half-asleep and will be completely unable to remember anything that happened afterwards. Only the Emulators and the Night Wizards know the truth of the world inside the Lunar Casket. For Innocents, it's simply as if time has stopped.
Timing of Lunar Caskets
Creating a Lunar Casket is always an Auto Action.
Extent of Lunar Caskets
Lunar Caskets last until closed by the one who created them (known as the Ruler) or the end of the Scene. Of course, the GM and the Scenario hav the final word on when Scenes finish or Lunar Caskets close. Lunar Caskets are by default as large as necessary for the Scene to take place. This may be altered at the discretion of the GM or Scenario.
Detecting Lunar Caskets
When a Lunar Casket is created, the Red Moon rises. Basically, only Wizards and Emulators can see the Red Moon. When the Red Moon is visible, they know that a Lunar Casket has been created nearby. The range at which the Red Moon can be seen differs among individuals, but as a rule none is specified*. Special techniques exist to construct undetectable Lunar Caskets without causing the appearance of the Red Moon. Such a Lunar Casket can only be discovered by stumbling upon it.
Lunar Casket Detection Range
This may be determined by the Scenario. The story may dictate that Innocents (NPCs) be caught in a Lunar Casket. Similarly, at times the PCs should notice Lunar Caskets, and at times they shouldn't. This should be used as a gimmick to enhance the story.
Entry and Destruction of Lunar Caskets
If one can perceive the existence of a Lunar Casket, entering it is easy. Conversely, Innocents will basically never approach a Lunar Casket. Those within a Lunar Casket do not exist so far as the world is concerned. Within Lunar Caskets constructed by Emulators*, walls are often placed to prevent them from disturbance. These Lunar Caskets are known as Fortresses. Fortresses can only be entered via the entrance, and the Ruler- also known as the Core- must be destroyed in order to close the Lunar Casket. More on Fortresses will be revealed in subsequent supplements.
Defensive Lunar Caskets
As a matter of fact, Lunar Caskets were originally created by Emulators as Fortresses.
When the true enemy- the Boss Character- of the Scenario appears, it's time for the final battle in the Climax Phase. Conflict is unavoidable. The Night Wizards have no choice but to protect the world from the Emulators who assault it.
Climax Phase Appearance Judges
The GM may choose which PCs appear in the Climax Phase at their discretion. An Appearance Judge is not necessary. The chance for the PCs to appear in the climax of the scenario shouldn't be left to the luck of the dice.
The Ending Phase is the epilogue of the session. The incident is resolved, and the PCs discuss what comes next. An Ending Scene will take place, the contents of which depend on the scenario.
Concluding Main Play
With this, Main Play (most of the session) is finished and After Play begins. During After Play, the Players and GM receive experience points, everyone cleans up, and things are brought to a close.
Then the GM declared the game is over, the curtain has closed on today's stage. After this, After Play begins. After Play consists of the players receiving experience points, cleaning up, and other matters necessary to resolve the game.
Stages of After Play
After Play consists of the following stages.
Every character that isn't dead will have their HP and MP completely restored. Damage and Bad Statuses received during the session will not carry over to the next.
Filling Out the Report Sheet
Each player should fill out their own Report Sheet aside from the Experience Points row. Don't forget to fill in the player, GM, and scenario name.
Both the players and the GM receive experience points which can be used to improve their characters. Gained experience points can be used on any PC created by that player. Experience points are awarded not to characters but to the players and GM.
Calculating Experience Points
Experience points are awarded by checking the following items. Checking items for each player will determine the number of experience points they receive. The maximum number of experience points that can be earned is 13.
- Participated in the whole session: 1 point
Everyone present should get this checked.
- Accomplished the objective of the scenario: 3~8 points
The GM may decide whether the objective of the scenario was accomplished. Typically, this is worth 5 points. Even if the objective was not accomplished, only 3 points should be awarded. If the players did a terrific job accomplishing the objective, 1~3 bonus points may be added. The maximum number of points is 8.
- Roleplayed well: 1 point
The players may be asked to recommend each other for this bonus.
- Was helpful the other players with their words or actions: 1 point
The players may be asked to recommend each other for this bonus.
- Helped keep the session moving: 1 point
The GM may recognize players who picked up the pace.
- Provided space for the session or helped with scheduling: 1 point
Players who provided space for the session to take place or helped arrange the time should be recognized. Refer to Page 245 for more information on the above criteria.
GM Experience Points
After all the PCs have recorded their experience points on their Session Sheets, add them up. Divide this sum by 3 (rounded down) to determine the GM's experience points. However, divide the sum by the number of players if there are fewer than two.
Characters who safely cleared the scenario may be able to level up. See Page 184 for a description of the level-up process.
Items or Connections obtained during the Session cannot be kept. They are all lost. This is known as Normalization. For more information on Normalization, see page 185. In the case of items created by the GM where no price was set, they may convert their value to experience points instead. Setting a value of 0 points works well. (typo?)
Once characters have leveled up, the place used to hold the session should be cleaned up. Do a good job so you'll be invited back to hold future sessions in the same place. If it is a public place, follow the rules of the facility.
After you've cleaned up, consider going to a tea shop or restaurant and holding a discussion about today's session. Set aside time in advance to do this when scheduling the session.