Help with my solitary blade: OMAC option possible?


Ive ran into a problem: I have only ONE viable BoB player… Should I just quit, or is it an One Man Army Corps possible?

Can one player, one GM work with this game?

TY any thoughts…

So “RAW”? Probably not gonna work out that hot. However, I am very used to Solo-ing (so, just me, myself, and I) “The Big Three”- Blades, S&V, and Band of Blades- but I use “Solo Play” a little bit differently than most folks interpret “Solo Play.” Rather than 1 beefed up character, I control a “Table of 3-4” and proceed from there.

So, in theory, rather than playing BoB as a Duet game, you could probably get away with GMless Co-Op play, in which you are both Players and you share various GMing duties between each other. From there, each of you can decide between the 3 mandatory Command Staff Roles and then divvy up the third role between the two of you. Then, I’d recommend just given the nature of BoB, that you take a page out of “multiple character” approach and each of you controls 2 PCs during missions so it’s kinda like having 4 players at the table with just the two of you.

Of course, it’ll take some elbow grease (and honestly, finding a 3rd person so you can do 3 player Co-Op GM-less to make things even easier on yourselves), but it’d be doable.

Some resources I use for Solo-Play that would apply to Co-Op GM-less play as well:

  • Alone in the Dark has some advice for “pure” Solo-ing, namely in the nature of boosting up your character (starting with more Action Ratings, more special abilities, more Crew Abilities and upgrades, etc.). Personally, as I said, I enjoy the process of journaling things out as if I’m writing a small fiction story- which means having extra characters to bounce things off of really adds some life into the journaling process.

    • Despite playing 3-4 PCs at the very start of things, it didn’t even break a single thing in play when I was controlling those PCs! In fact, as long as you are playing them with that “stolen car” mindset and playing them as separate and organic characters- the game will play out like any other Blades game! Crazy entanglements, traumas abound, etc.
    • In the case of Band of Blades, you may want to consider- if you want to make things easier for yourselves- to start characters with at least one advancement each in starting with more Stress and starting with an extra Trauma box. Not required, but it can assist for certain
    • If neither of you want to control more than one character at a time and you both end up playing Specialists- you may want to make sure that Rookies on the mission earn some shred of XP as well to keep them on track for Soldier advancements and whatnot
  • There’s a lot of great GM Emulators and Oracles out there. Personally, I like Oracular tools that are wicked quick to use. Mythic is pretty nifty, but I found it cumbersome (YMMV, of course). So instead, I use the nifty thing that Alone in the Dark suggested: Game Icons (or really any other “Rory’s Story Cube” such thing). These are great for better envisioning complications, obstacles, problems, jobs, etc. and just serving as the answer for complex questions.

    • Alone in the Dark has a pretty simple way to expand on the use of Fortune Rolls to also be a simple “Yes/No/And/But/Because” kind of tool, but I really like how Omens in the Dark expands on all of that. It’s just a really nice QoL thing.
  • I’m really big into automation, so- in the case of Band of Blades- this mission generator was huge in speeding up play and providing tons of information for GM Emulation.

  • The Ironsworn Oracular Tables are also excellent. Action and Theme is another great tool to pair with Game Icons for oracular inspiration. The Character Goal and Descriptor is also good, and I will often make use of similar tools from Fantasy Name Generator: Goals and Traits.

  • For names, I utilize this name generator for Band of Blades- though Fantasy Name Generator is also great as well

Like I said, it may not be perfect, but it’s worked for me for Solo Play- so maybe it can help the two of y’all for Co-Op GMless play. Hopefully that all makes sense and hopefully that helps