Friday, November 11, 2011

[Old Gaming Notebook] The Rest of the Games

The information about the remaining game ideas contained in my old gaming notebook was pretty sparse.  That is the point of my notebooks - keep them handy and jot down ideas that come my way so I don't forget them.  The details about these four games is very limited but is included here for the sake of completeness.

A World in Ruins
This game will be Gamma World + RIFTS + Thundarr the Barbarian.  Player races will include Pure Humans, Mutants, & Mutant Animals.  Civilization is destroyed by all out nuclear war and the players explore the ravaged Earth and fight for survival.

I'm a big fan of post-apocalyptic games and fiction so that's really all the description I needed.  I played a lot of Gamma World and RIFTS in my youth and Thundarr is my absolute favorite cartoon from my childhood.  I am sure that "Gamma World + RIFTS + Thundarr the Barbarian" means that I should design the game around all of the good stuff to be found in those settings.

Army Men
A simple war game using those packages of low cost plastic army men found in the toy sections of various stores.

That little blurb is the entirety of the work I did on that game.  My war gaming experience is pretty limited.  I really enjoy Axis & Allies, One Page Bulge, and RISK.  I have been tempted to pick up Warhammer, Warhammer 40K, Twilight Imperium, or some other such board or war game.  I have not been able to justify spending that much money on a gaming purchase but I would be interested in low cost alternatives.  That's where the idea for this game came from.  I've seen those little green - other colors also available - army men in all sorts of stores from Dollar General to Wal-Mart.  Amassing a large force would be pretty inexpensive.  I've also seen sets you can buy to use with them have armored vehicles, sandbag formations, and other assorted stuff.

Old School Role-Playing
A game designed like the early competitors to D&D that tried to "out-D&D" D&D.

I think most gamers reading this knows the type of game I'm talking about with this idea.  For those that don't know the type of game this references the explanation is simple.  There were a run of games following D&D's release that could basically be summed up as "D&D turned up to 11!".  Where D&D had six Abilities, these games would have more.  Why have only Dexterity when you can have Agility and Dexterity or why have only Charisma when you have Appearance, Social, and Charm?  You get the idea - these games would be considered a fantasy heart breaker today.

To The Stars...
A game set in the 1950's during alien encounters with flying saucers, ray guns, little green men, etc.

In a nutshell, every cliche used in the old science fiction movies during the 1950's and 60's - bug eye monsters, martians come to steal our women, pseudoscience, and America winning in the end.  Plus, it would give me an excuse to watch a bunch of those old sci-fi movies.

Closing Thoughts
I think each of these ideas have some merit if done properly.  I will admit that I probably would not do anything with Army Men today.  I don't feel that I have enough practical war or board game experience to do it properly.  Old School Role-Playing could be a fun project but it is in opposition to the lighter approach I like to take with rules now.  To The Stars... and A World in Ruins would probably have the best chance of being developed by me.  In fact, either one of these would probably work great with the Microlite20 rules and I may just pursue that sometime, who knows?


  1. I think any post-apocalyptic game that doesn't pay at least some homage to Thundarr is lacking. Hope you work more on that idea somewhere down the line!

    And 50's bug-eyed aliens/ray guns/silver suit sci-fi sounds like a fun game to me, too! I like my gonzo RPGs. ;)

    Just as an aside, I've played a fair amount of Twilight Imperium, and I wouldn't really call it a 'war game.' It actually is easier to win the less fighting you do.

  2. I missed your comments until this morning - d'oh!

    I'm very interested in continuing work on the post-apocalyptic game inspired by Thundarr. Gonzo is always cool in my book.

    I'm very interested in Twilight Imperium. Does it hold up well with multiple plays?