Brief Incarnations

A “poem” of domestic horror for 3 to 5 people,
with a duration of 15 to 30 minutes

Brief Incarnations is a game about familiar tragedies.
In it the players assume the roles of the Daddy, the Mommy and the Baby
in a imaginary talk about the saddest day of their lives.

Arrange a quiet place and a few chairs.

In a game for 3 people, the Couple stands side by side facing the Baby.
In a game for 5 people, 4 represent the Couple, each one in the role of
the Virtues and the Vices of the Daddy, the Mommy and the Baby.

The eyes of the Baby drive the game, defining who can speak.
If they look straight to the Daddy, so the Daddy should speak.
If they look straight to the Mommy, so the Mommy should speak.
And so their Virtues and Vices.
All look to the Baby, and if It doesn’t look to anyone:


When everyone is in theirs places and already took a deep breath,
the Baby starts the game saying something as:

That was a day like any other…
Daddy outside and Mommy inside the house.

First, the Daddy (or his Virtues) says what he was doing.
After, the Mommy (or her Virtues) says what she was doing.
And so the Baby starts to say… disturbing things.

That was the most painful day of my life.
Mamma don’t like me.

The Parents should not respond directly to provocations of the baby.
Instead, they should tell the little moments that one which was
the saddest day of their lives.

No one will ever reveal what so tragic happened that day.
But around the fact, there’s so much to say.

The game goes on with the players unfolding the mistakes, the regrets,
the secrets and the guilt around the things that their characters
don’t dare to mention.

Until the Baby decides to say, finally:

Brief Incarnations is freely inspired
by a short fiction from David Foster Wallace

and a Role-Playing Poem by Goshai Daian.

This poem was written in the middle of 2013, rewritten in May of 2014 and again in January of 2015. Several versions of it are spread on the internet. I hope this is the last. I thank to André Assunção for the indication of the tale; to Luiz Falcão, Tiago Braga and the Lablarp for having tested the game long before myself; to Krishna Farnese, Rafael Rocha and the others who where there when I could, at the Belo Horizonte’s Game Lab, at April 2014.

Like what you read? Give Goshai Daian a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.