sean_tait (sean_tait) wrote,
sean_tait
sean_tait

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The Bane of my Existence

Ah, RPGs... What a bitter drug. They're as expensive as anime, as enthralling as comics, and more time-consuming than either.

Actually, I guess they're just more time-consuming for me. If you're the kind of gamer who sits down with his buds every Friday night and plays the latest store-bought module, then I guess game prep is pretty easy. I've never enjoyed those (or been able to run them well) so I'm stuck creating my own stuff.

Which I'd have to do anyway because few of the genres I want to play come with ready-made scenarios. While I occasionally feel nostalgic for AD&D's generic fantasy worlds, they (and their modules) aren't very feminine. There's not enough thinking or emoting involved in running around killing monsters for my wife's tastes. I suppose if we bought "The Book of Erotic Fantasy" we could do that... (Satyrs and centaurs and minotaurs! Oh my!)

I think we both like more grounded worlds anyway. We have more fun with historical settings, whether distant (Dark Ages Britain, Heian Era Japan) or recent (the Victorian Era, the late '60s and '70s). Because my wife can't really take the time to study up on spell lists and the like, it also works better for us to play mere human or near-human characters (say, between Lara Croft and Buffy).

Which is all a bunch of rambling...

Anyway, here's some game projects I've never gotten finished:

COPS & ROBBERS

Every RPG that includes a chapter explaining what RPGS are compares them to a pen and paper version of "cops and robbers." Following that, since "Grand Theft Auto," "The Sopranos," "Ocean's 11," and the legions of cop shows on TV are so popular, why not do an RPG that emulates crime and mystery fiction (especially heist capers)? Heck, the modules would practically write themselves.

Of course, trademarking the name might be difficult, but it would give me a chance to include Monkey Mask -- a Lupin III pastiche I created -- somewhere.

MONOGATARI

An RPG of Japanese fairy tales (the scary kind as well as the lovely). I think the default setting would be the gracious and mysterious Heian Era. I really tried writing this once but got fed up pretty quick. I should give it another go. It would hopefully sell well amongst anime fans.

UNTITLED EDO ERA GAME

This would be something more in the style of "Lone Wolf & Cub," "Ninja Scroll," "Rurouni Kenshin," and "Zatoichi:" a game about wandering swordsmen and freakish ninja set against a background of pleasure quarters and yakuza-overrun villages. I think the Sengoku Era is actually a boring setting; I realize it makes "parties" easier to assemble, but why do you want games about war? I'd rather have mystery.

STEAMPULP

There's some guy out there who beat me to the name and we've both got the same basic concept and inspiration, so I would either have to think up a new name or team up with him.

This is my name (and his, apparently) for Victorian Era adventure fiction -- the predecessor of the pulps -- as epitomized by "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" and all the books Alan Moore stole from (some of which I've read). There's a couple of steampunk and Victorian fantasy games out there, but none that really try to emulate the original tales themselves. I'd like to try to correct that.

And I think that's it. Wizards of the Coast ran a setting contest a few years ago that I developed an Earthsea/Pirates of Dark Water pastiche for, but I never considered it a separate game in its own right. I wonder if I still have the notes for that? I'll have to post them if I do. It was pretty derivative, but not bad.
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