1 GM, 2+ players. CHOOSE CHARACTERS: - FAMILY VACATION - - FRIENDS CUTTING LOOSE - - COMPANY RETREAT - Create a hierarchy (parent/child, boss/subordinate, etc.) among your characters. Choose 3 skills from: - FUN - PLANNING - NAVIGATION - SOUVENIRS - ESSENTIALS - RELAXATION Assign 12 points across your skills. DETERMINE GAME LENGTH Short game - 3 days. Long game - 5 days (or more). Each day represents part of the story. FIRST DAY: Travel & Arrival. Get to know characters & quirks. FINAL DAY: Check-Out & Departure. Back to life. OTHER DAYS: Everything else. BAD STUFF Each player writes 3 terrible things down on index cards. As mundane, fantastic, or horrifying as you like. Fold them, place in center of table. GM draws one card for each Day in story; use these to create plot stuff. GOOD STUFF Create 2 items/skills that will help someone. Write on index cards; pass one to player on the left, put the other in the center pile. Keep items secret until used. GM included in this. SKILL CHECKS Roll 1d10 for skill checks or when outcome is unknown. Roll on a skill, get below target number to succeed. Use your item or pull from center pile for +3 bonus. Bon voyage.
The idea for this game began as a seed during the last short trip that my wife and I shared. I thought the idea of trying to face down trouble, attacks from aliens, or otherwise hardship-related stuff was even more difficult to deal with when you’re supposed to be on vacation.
Controlling the length of the game by introducing one bad thing for each day of the vacation will help your RPG group decide exactly how bad you’re willing to let things get, and just how gonzo the session might go. I also wanted it to be open-ended, in that a problem that appears on Day 1 might not necessarily be resolved before Day 3. It’s completely up to the GM and the players to figure out the pacing.