Wednesday, March 5, 2014

March Madness OSR Challenge

Like a few others, I don't have the time or stamina for another post-a-day questionnaire. So, I am participating in this with a single post. Besides, doing it this way made me answer on the fly, which I think gives you a more honest result.

1 What was the first roleplaying game other than D&D you played? Was it before or after you had played D&D?
DC Heroes. I’ve talked about this recently. It was short-lived, but sorta fun.

2 What was the first character you played in an RPG other than D&D? How was playing it different from playing a D&D character?
Feline. See above. The mechanics were new and strange, and the setting was as different from D&D as could be.

3 Which game had the least or most enjoyable character generation?
I usually have fun with chargen in any game I play. I think the random characters possible in Marvel Super Heroes was pretty funny.

4 What other roleplaying author besides Gygax impressed you with their writing?
David “Zeb” Cook. I am only recently becoming aware of just how much he wrote back in the day. And he write an adventure based on my favorite Conan story (Red Nails), so he wins.

5 What other old school game should have become as big as D&D but didn’t? Why do you think so?
The Conan RPG from 1985. It had a cool character generation system that put narrative before mechanics. Or maybe Villains & Vigilantes, since it was the first Supers RPG.

6 What non-D&D monster do you think is as iconic as D&D ones like hook horrors or flumphs, and why do you think so?
The Sathar from Star Frontiers. Evil worms from outer space!

7 What fantasy RPG other than D&D have you enjoyed most? Why?
Legend of the Five Rings, from AEG. The idea of playing Samurai in a high fantasy setting was awesome. Crab Clan forever!

8 What spy RPG have you enjoyed most? Give details.
Victory’s James Bond RPG. I played the same character through several missions, and really enjoyed them a lot. It captured the feel of a Bond film very well.

9 What superhero RPG have you enjoyed most? Why?
Marvel Super Heroes, hands down. The whole presentation was so fun and light-hearted. Years and years later, I still recall the basics of FASERIP.

10 What science fiction RPG have you enjoyed most? Give details.
Trinity, the sci-fi storytelling game from White Wolf. We had a long set of adventures with that one. It was almost like a superhero game, but still very much sci-fi.

11 What post-apocalyptic RPG have you enjoyed most? Why?
Tribe 8 is really the only one I ever played, though I read up a lot on Gamma World and TMNT: After the Bomb.

12 What humorous RPG have you enjoyed most? Give details.
Only ever played Paranoia. I remember enjoying it, but I don’t remember much about it.

13 What horror RPG have you enjoyed most? Why?
Werewolf. I couldn’t get behind the idea of Vampires as heroes, but Werewolves were awesome.

14 What historical or cultural RPG have you enjoyed most? Give details.
We had a GURPS Vikings game going for a while. Really enjoyed that, despite the two munchkins we had with us. I’m pretty sure the whole thing died thanks to them.

15 What pseudo or alternate history RPG have you enjoyed most? Why?
My current D&D game is set in an alternate Middle Ages Earth, with fantasy races, and a pantheon of gods. It’s been going on for several years in real time.

16 Which RPG besides D&D has the best magic system? Give details.
Tunnels and Trolls. I have always liked the idea of a limited number of spells that just get more powerful.

17 Which RPG has the best high tech rules? Why?
Trinity was cool. Though I think Shadowrun has some great stuff in it too.

18 What is the crunchiest RPG you have played? Was it enjoyable?
Anything Hero System related. Always enjoyable, despite the crunch.

19 What is the fluffiest RPG you have played? Was it enjoyable?
Vampire. But, I may be biased, as Vampires suck. The whole game had too much angsty story. I realize that was how it was designed, but it just wasn't for me. My first Vampire character was basically a turned Frank Castle.

20 Which setting have you enjoyed most? Why?
Forgotten Realms. I can play it, run it, and read it, and it’s always fun.

21 What is the narrowest genre RPG you have ever played? How was it?
Twilight 2000. It’s pretty damn specific in genre. You really can’t go outside the box on that one. But, for what it did, it idid it well.

22 What is the most gonzo kitchen sink RPG you ever played? How was it?
A combined WoD game that allowed characters from Vampire, Werewolf, Mage, etc. Not sure we ever got to actually play it, but just the idea was mind-boggling. And exciting.

23 What is the most broken game that you tried and were unable to play?
Dark Conspiracy. I remember my buddy abandoned the game after a player couldn’t throw a grenade in a straight line in front of her. I think he converted it to the Hero system.

24 What is the most broken game that you tried and loved to play, warts and all?
According to most gamers, D&D 3.x. Though I don’t think it’s broken. It’s just got a LOT of material available. Some of it is dumb, but you don’t have to use it all.

25 Which game has the sleekest, most modern engine?
D20. The universality, and ability to mimic any genre with some simple tweaking makes this a wonderful system. It can be as simple or as crunchy as you like.

26 What RPG based on an IP did you enjoy most? Give details.
The Mongoose Conan RPG. Had a blast with that one. Made my character exactly how I wanted him, and it drew on my personal knowledge of the Hyborian Age nicely.

27 What IP (=Intellectual Property, be it book, movie or comic) that doesn’t have an RPG deserves it? Why?
Avatar – The Last Airbender. That cartoon series just screams for an RPG. So many possibilities, and so many RPG elements already built in.

28 What free RPG or what non-English RPG did you enjoy most? Give details.
I haven’t gotten to play any of the free stuff I have downloaded (and I have downloaded a LOT). But, just from reading, Swords & Wizardry seems like it would be the best.

29 What OSR product have you enjoyed most? Explain why.
Probably Basic Arcana. Mainly because I wrote it, and it made me feel good to give back just a little to the hobby that has given me so much. Plus, the profits from the sales helped fund my weekend at Gamehole Con last year.

30 Which non-D&D supplemental product should everyone know about? Give details.
Pretty much any GRUPS supplement. Those things are just chock-full of information that can help with any game you run.

31 What out-of-print RPG would you most like to see back in publication? Why?
Star Frontiers, with updated and streamlined mechanics. The setting was so great, and the overall feel and tone was perfect.


  1. I was just rereading Basic Arcana again this morning and thinking about how much I liked it.

    And yes you can go wrong with the GURPS books.

  2. Well, that just makes me very happy. :) Thanks!