Edited to add: I don’t much talk about the mechanics of the game in this post. If you want, I can expand in the comments. It’s pretty short and sweet.

Last night, we played Do: Pilgrims of the Flying Temple, by Daniel Solis. It was a blast.

Earlier that day, Daniel had tweeted saying that Do isn’t a role-playing game. And he is exactly right. It’s what it says on the cover: a collaborative storytelling game. And it makes that clear, and does it well. The game shows the kind of elegant simplicity that is the result of the years of work that have gone into it. The basic randomizing mechanic gives you a constrained choice in a larger choice-space, with enough factors going into it that it can be interesting, but enough of them deferred or non-obvious that it doesn’t slow you down. The story emerges from that randomness and the strong initial situation[1] well. There’s a little learning curve to pace the story right, and it requires the willingness to bend things occasionally, and you can get a little flatness out of getting in trouble right before the end, but it’s strong.

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  1. The choose-a-letter-to-respond-to thing is fantastic. It tells you where you start, and what to do subsequently. I’m increasingly feeling that “what do I do now” and “what do I do first” are different questions. []