Sunday, December 22, 2013

Everyone's John!

Hey there! How's everything? In this post I'm gonna talk about a really fun roleplaying game, that can be played with just 3+ people, 1d6, and a little amount of time: Everyone's John!
The rules are really easy to learn and follow, so this game is especially good for narrators who want to introduce new people to the hobbie: you don't have to read any manual, or make any complicated mathematical equations to play it... in fact, after reading this post you'll already be able to play it!

This is a 'surreal' RPG about John, a really crazy man who has voices in his head. The narrator will, of course, play as John himself, acting out his every action and reaction, as he tells the story and describes the background, but each player will play as one of the voices in his head.
The game starts when John wakes up, in a room which will be described by the narrator, and since that point onward all the voices can start talking. The crazier and louder they are, the more fun the game is, and even more if random people see you play!

First, each voice must choose an Obsession, which will be their winning condition. Then two abilities, which can be almost anything (think FATE aspects if that helps you), but not too general ('I'm good at everything' is not a valid ability). And this is where the game becomes interesting: John is bad at doing ANYTHING at all, unless the voices specifically tell him how to. Even tying your sholaces can be an adventure if your fingers are so clumsy. So, each action John tries to do will be a 1d6 roll with difficulty 6, unless it relates to the current controlling voice's abilities, and the voice helps him do it, step by step, in a really clear manner, in which case it will be difficulty 3+.

After setting up, John finally wakes up. At this point each voice is given 10 willpoints and made to bet for John's control. everyone should have tokens of any kind (coins, sticks, even grassleaves) to bet, and extend their clenched fists with the tokens inside, then open their hands at the same time. The one who bets more, loses the tokens and gets to control John, so that he will do as that voice tells him (the other players get to keep their tokens). That doesn't mean the other voices can't talk! on the contrary, they are encouraged to talk so that John is even crazier... remember, he's highly suggestionable.
Each time the controlling voice fulfills his goal, or John gets hurt, the bet must take place again.
When no players have willpower points left, or if john dies, then the game is over, and the player with more victory points wins.
But how do I get victory points? you may be asking. Well, that's easy: each time John fulfils someone's obsession, that voice gets points equal to the level of the obsession. Even if the controlling voice isn't the one who fulfilled it, that is, so influencing John's thoughts out of your turn is advisable and fun.
An obsession level is proportional to its difficulty: a level one obsession is really easy (eating chocolate), a level two one is fairly easy (stealing chocolate from a baby) and a level three one is way harder (stealing chocolate from a baby without making him cry).
So, if I have a lvl2 obsession fulfilled twice before the game ends, I'll get 4 points, and so on.

I really recommend this game, and think it's really good for new players who don't want to read 500 pages of fluff and flavor, and just have some crazy fun instead. This games can easily end up in a GTA like thing, as much as in a psychological paranoia thriller.
Hope you like this article, and if you ever played EiJ or any other RPG please leave a comment telling me about your experience!

I'd like to use this space to remind everyone that esperanto is a living language, and I have a blog in it, where I wrote about this same game. If you want to see how easy esperanto is, read my post about this game here or learn esperanto at, a site which I profoundly recommend.

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