Welcome to Cortex University!
Welcome to Cortex University Lecture Notes Series! The handpicked staff at Cortex U. partnered with The Polverine and The Dirty Window to bring you easy-to-digest, research- and evidence-based course material for Cortex Prime players, Game Moderators, and Hack Designers.
A Reliable, Practice-Based Approach
Cortex University publishes research-based lecture notes on The Polverine in a format optimized for access and usefulness. Our lecture notes have an average of 10 minutes of estimated reading time, and comprise:
- A short, to-the-point introduction: within a minute, decide whether the class is for you.
- Two practice-based sections: no abstract theory, but practical, applicable information.
- An exercise section: 2-3 exercises to put into practice the skills learned in the class.
All lecture notes wrap up with a conclusion and a Q&A telling you where to find more, what was left out, and why, and placing the class topic in a broader context.
One Series, Three Tracks, Three Levels
Cortex University currently offers classes at 3 levels:
- Introductory (101): The first-step approach to a single topic, either Player- (P), Game Moderator- (GM), or Hack Designer (HD)-focused.
- Intermediate (201): Building on (at least) a 101 class, with priority given to one perspective (P, GM, or HD), but possibly crossing over.
- Advanced (301): Material for already-experienced Ps, GMs, or HDs, either building on (101) and (201) classes or on external resources.
Lecture notes will be announced as part of the Player, Game Moderator, or Hack Designer Track according to the perspective adopted (101) or the main focus (201, 301).
Bookmark the Summer 2022 Class Schedule!
Cortex University lecture notes for the Summer Term 2022 will be announced in the Cortex University Announcement Channel, but we will update the course schedule on this page. Bookmark the schedule for easy reference.
Dice Pool Stories 101: A Practical Introduction [P] “Roleplay, not roll play” is a thing, but not in Cortex Prime, although dice-based roleplaying is a skill with a learning curve, and those lecture notes should flatten it somewhat. By The Polverine, Ph. D., SSTP-A.
Threats 101: A Practical Introduction [GM]: (May 23) Apocalypse World’s Threat and Cortex Prime GMCs have a lot in common, and there are benefits to getting them even closer. By The Polverine, Ph. D., SSTP-A
Threats 201: Disclaiming Decision-Making [GM]: (May 28) Cortex Prime can build Threat Maps on Pathways, and a GM can turn them into improvisational tools allowing for storylines without railroading. By The Polverine, Ph. D., SSTP-A
Making Scenes 301: Starting at the Finish [HD, GM]: How to build scenes with a blender of traits and some random magic to assign some weight to those traits. By Lynn Jones, SSTP.
Never Miss a Lecture!
Didn’t we mention the Cortex University Announcement Channel on The Dirty Window already? Subscribe to it and never miss a lecture!
Stuck with Homework? Get Help!
Taking a shot at the practice exercise and getting stuck? Needing a partner for a Buddy-based exercise? We have you covered! Each Lecture note links to the exercise channel on The Dirty Window: ask around, find a buddy, or tag the @CU Staff, and get unstuck.
While you are there, don’t hesitate to poke around and check our other great content!
The Cortex U staff.