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Monsterhearts Review – Ep285


We finally did it. We played the game that so many people said that we should. Monsterhearts.


You can watch the game in its entirety here.


Cast – Dan, Brandi, Eric, Jayson, Mike and Brandon



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If you have some input on this, leave a comment.


  1. Jeremy
    Jeremy September 27, 2016

    Generally I like your show, but the game sounds horrible. It sounds like taking the worst things about high school, magnifying the emo douchebaginess by 10, sprinkling with a dash of mentally ill serial killer, and then forcing yourself to play through a story with the depth of a Mexican soap opera. The game is clearly targeted to degenerates and the sexually repressed.

  2. Michael
    Michael September 29, 2016

    So, she hadn’t transitioned yet when she published Monsterhearts, but the author is trans and has recently gotten married. Her name is now Avery Alder.

    MonsterHearts is wonderful. For the repressed, you can add in Dana Fried’s small AW hack to turn the sex moves into intimate moments moves, though that does take away more from MH than it does for AW. It is playing teenagers, who are inherently messy.

    Like a lot of the first generation AW hacks, Monster Hearts really does want to be a short campaign, not a one shot…

    There is a glorious hack called Elder Hearts, set in the other place where people have a lot of sex and poor impulse control: an oldfolks home.

  3. Michael
    Michael September 29, 2016

    Here’s Dana’s mod for 1st generation PBTA:

    So one thing that helps with the exploring queer sexuality is using the Turn a person on move. The character is attracted when you use that move, but that doesn’t mean they have to act on it. Having the mechanics helps people move out of being a bit nervous about sexuality in the game.

    If you want a game that does powered teenagers with less infighting awfulness, Masks does super powered teens, with internal conflict but with a set of plot beats that goes from fight to work together to fight again.

  4. Lythias
    Lythias September 29, 2016

    Really enjoyed listening to your take on Monsterhearts, and I look forward to listening to the AP when I get home from work.
    Speaking of PbtA, and your love of young supers, I STRONGLY recommend you have a look at ‘Masks’.
    You could run an Alternate Universe version of Hero High and its characters; like the Earth 2/Ultimate versions of characters in the various comicverses.

  5. Chris (HyveMynd)
    Chris (HyveMynd) October 4, 2016

    Thanks for the shout out, though it was everyone saying you should play. Glad you finally did. 😀

    Things do tend to escalate very quickly in one shots and that’s totally cool. As you’re never going to see these characters again (usually), you want to watch them crash and burn as quickly as possibly. The claws come out and people go for each other’s throats right away. The one shots I’ve played in almost always end with heaps of dead and dismembered bodies.

    In campaigns though, players tend to go for the slow burn. You have the time to set things up, to really get leverage on people, and to hit them when they are least expecting it. You also have time to play out those poor impulses and see just how badly things snowball out of control. You almost have to play this way in campaigns though, because going right for the jugular escalates things too fast. Your character will end up with too many enemies, will have burned too many bridges, and will just get dogpiled.

    Thanks for playing and the review. Glad you all had fun, and hopefully you’ll get to play again.

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