Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Five or So Questions on Domina Magica

Get to twirling, everyone! I have an interview today with Emily Reinhart on Domina Magica, a magical girl game that's currently on Kickstarter! Check out the magic below!

a magical girl spinning with bright lights, wearing a pink and white dress, surrounded by a colorful illustrated border
Tell me about Domina Magica. What excites you about it?

Hey!!! Domina Magica is magical girl RPG that myself and my team Third Act Publishing created!! It is an episodic game that emulates an episode of a Magical Girl Anime. It has a ton of unique mechanics to help facilitate the feel of some of the iconic anime tropes. There is the "cootie catcher" or "fortune teller" that allows you and your group of players to set the scene and tone of your game by filling out the "flaps," it also allows the players to fill in "secret trials" that will activate later in the game. There is also a dual sided Character Sheet that allows you to build a School Girl character first and then when you transform your physically flip the sheet over and build your "Magical Girl!!!"

We are really excited for this Game!!! Our Kickstarter funded in 15 hours and we are sending out Slap Bracelets to backers as we speak!!! If you are in the US and fund at any level, even the $1 level we will send you a purple "Fight like a Magical Girl Bracelet" right away. Not when it is over, not when the books comes!!! Sending hundreds of Slap Bracelets in the mail and seeing them pop up all over social media is something we are super excited about!!!!

I LOVE the character sheet idea! Clever character sheets can make games more fun! So can transformation - is that a big aspect of Domina Magica?

Transformation was and still is a huge part of Domina Magica. The dual character sheets was a game mechanic that I wanted to implement from the very beginning and one of the very few things that have changed. I liked the idea that your magical girl, and your school girl would have different identities and I wanted to represent that at the game table. Double Sided character sheets fit that mechanic perfectly. We also created a way that the character sheets build off of each other so that what you do in your school girl person directly impacts what your Magical Girl looks like!!

The book and associated goodies including a wristband in purple and yellow.
How does the game work mechanically - what do players use to resolve conflicts, or to interact with each other and non-player characters?

The Game works off a "roll low" system. Your school girl will have 5 traits, and you as the player will have 5 die, D4 through D12. Your traits are Friendship, Strength, Honesty, Kindness and Persistence. Since it is a "roll low" system you want to roll as close to 1 as possible so your D4 is your highest die. You get to assign the 5 die to the five traits, picking what trait is your highest (d4) and what trait you still need to work on (d12.) When the transformation happens and you flip over your character sheet, you get to reassign your die to the same 5 stats, so your Magical Girl might not have the same strengths as your school girl persona. To confront a "bully" or "dark enemy" you will simply pick a trait you think represents what you are doing and it will be a contested roll against the target, whoever rolls closer to 1 succeeds the check.

After all she is the 1 Sailor Moon!!! After hearing that song for years I really wanted a system that made '1' the best number and not 20. 

A winged heart with stars inside.

Tell me about the magical girls and school girls you play. What are they like? How are they presented? What do they do?

Ok, I will start with the School Girl because you build her first. At this point you can play any school girl you want. Schoolboy? Thats fine! Transgender? Great! You get to decide on her traits, stats and characteristics! The character sheet has the typical Likes/Dislikes and Blood type portions for you to fill out. You give her a name and then assign the dice to her stats. After you have filled all of that out, you get to present her and tell the table a bit more about your character. So the players get to choose literally everything about the School Girl!

Once the party has transformed you physically turn your character sheet over to reveal the Magical Girl Side. Here you can reassign her dice, and give her a name. Since she is a part of a team, the players have to decide what type of Magical Girls they are playing and describe the transformation process. So some of the Magical Girl traits are filled in by the table and some are filled in by the player! Then they fight the Boss that has been building throughout the course of the "episode."

Share some of the highlights and challenges of this project. What has it been like playtesting and creating a game so femme focused? 

There were several challenges that we have run into even in the early stages of the game. I wanted this game to be Everything!!! I wanted it to have every theme, troupe, cliche and mechanic that I could cram in, but after playtesting it and looking back at it.......the game was a hot mess. We had to get rid of a few mechanics and tweak others to make play more smooth and the concepts to flow better.
Play testing has been a huge help! Most of my players are men who are so excited to get to play magical Girls!! Playtesting with different groups of people helped me see different things i could do to appeal to a wider audience as well. I changed the character sheets to include all body types and not just the stereotypical "Skinny Anime Girl" If we get to print off full color character sheets I would love to do different skin tones as well!!!

the Domina Magica cover with stylized metal and gold, a winged heart with stars inside, and the appearance of being chained.


Awesome, thank you so much Emily for answering my questions! I hope you all enjoyed the interview and that you'll check out Domina Magica on Kickstarter today!

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