The Game menu lists the features you can use to give a number of specifics about your game, including the title of your Chronicle, a schedule of game sessions and the Grapevine settings to use with this information.
The game information tab of the game settings window offers you fields in which to record a basic outline of your game.
- Chronicle Title. This will be displayed in Grapevine’s title bar when you’re working on the file.
- Web Page. Grapevine can link you instantly with your game’s web presence.
- E-Mail. How to get in touch with this game by e-mail.
- Phone. How to get in touch with this game by phone.
- Staff. This field automatically lists the chosen few not listed as “Player” in your Player Information.
- Usual Place. Where to show up to play this game.
- Usual Time. When to show up.
- Description. Be it a few notes to yourself or a full-blown ‘venue style sheet,’ spare a few words to describe what exactly this chronicle is all about.
A calendar on the Game Dates tab allows you to specify each date you plan a game session. Click any date to identify it as a session. Time and Place, below the calendar, will automatically show the usual time and place you entered in Game Information, but you can edit these to account for any changes.
Clicking the Delete Date button will eliminate the selected date from the game schedule. It will also delete all action and rumor entries for that date. A confirmation dialog will appear to ensure you want to go through with this. Unless you’re gung-ho about complete chronicle records, deleting old dates is recommended every so often to keep your file size down.
Filling this schedule out is especially important if you want to use Grapevine’s Chronicle features. Chronicle organizes all player actions, plot developments, and rumors by game date.
In the General Settings tab of the Game Settings window, you let Grapevine know what kind of general working environment you’d like to use with this game file.
- Health Levels. Older MET books allotted only four health levels to characters; Revised MET books allotted seven. This option controls the number of health levels Grapevine gives characters by default. Most games use seven. The two conversion buttons will help you convert all the characters in your game from one standard to another.
- Enforce the use of Experience Point histories and Player Point histories.Checking this option will disable your ability to alter experience and player points without making corresponding entries in their histories. You’ll have to track the source and use of every experience point and player point. Leaving this option unchecked allows you to change point totals freely without having to keep records.
- Edit Physical, Social, and Mental Trait Maximums separately. By default, when you change one Trait Maximum on a character sheet, the other two change as well. Enabling this option allows you to edit the three numbers individually.
- Hide Storyteller Notes. By default, all text you save in Grapevine between the tags [ST] and [/ST] will never be printed or saved to a character sheet or game report. It’s secret information that remains only within the Grapevine file. Here you can change those tags from [ST] and [/ST] to whatever you want. To disable the feature, leave both fields blank.
- Character Sheet Menus. Here you find listed the file Grapevine uses to populate its character sheet menus. Click the “Browse…” button here to display the Grapevine Menus window and load a new Grapevine Menu (.gvm) file.
- Autosave. Check this box and set a time interval if you’d like Grapevine to make intermittent backup saves as you work, in a file in the Grapevine folder called Autosave.gv3.
- Total Personal Action Value. Some games may assign a number to how much a character can accomplish by way of her own personal attention during downtime. Set that number here.
- Always Add Common Actions. Ordinarily, creating an action will generate a single personal downtime action for a character. But some games are more detailed, dividing a character’s downtime into personal actions, Influence actions, and actions dealing with Backgrounds such as Contacts. Check this box to automatically generate such detail when creating a new downtime action.
- Copy Unused Values from Previous Action. Selecting this option will look to a character’s previous action every time you create a new one, and copy any “Unused” value from specific actions that it finds there. This is useful, for example, if your game runs twice a month but your Influence actions only reset once a month.
- Action Values. Detailed Influence actions usually associate a value with each level of Influence a character has, representing just how much she can do with it during downtime. (The MET book Dark Epics describes a detailed system for this idea.) This list sets the value associated with each level of an Influence. Click a level of Influence and adjust its associated value on the right.
- Backgrounds with Action Values. Some Backgrounds, like Contacts, can also be used in a manner like Influence. This list specifies what Backgrounds those are. Click Add to specify a new Background or Delete to remove one.
This tab deals with how the standard set of rumors is generated. Check the boxes to automatically generate the following types of rumors:
- Public Knowledge Rumors. A single rumor that all characters will receive.
- Personal Rumors. These rumors go to individual characters alone.
- Racial Rumors. These rumors go to all characters in the game of the same race: Vampire, Werewolf, Mortal, Mage, etc.
- Group Rumors. This provides a rumor to be received by each different clan, tribe, kith, etc. (Groups are shown in a column of the Characters window.)
- Subgroup Rumors. This provides a rumor to be received by each different sect, auspice, seeming, etc. (Subgroups are shown in a column of the Characters window.)
- Influence Rumors. This generates rumors for each type of Influence in your game. You have the option of filling out separate rumors for each level of the Influence up to level ten. Rumors will not be generated for Influences nobody has.
- All Additional Rumors from the Previous Session. After generating all the above rumors, look at the rumors for the previous game date. Any rumors that appear there and have not been generated will also be brought forward. Using this option, custom rumors like those tailored toward characters with Nightmares or characters in a certain noble house can persist from game session to game session.
- Copy All Rumor Text from Previous Session. If the text of your rumors is persistent as well, this selection will also copy the text from the previous session. This will only take effect if the “all additional rumors” option is checked.