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Monday, February 20, 2017

Living in the Past: Monday Edition

Great game on Fantasy Grounds Sunday night with Deron and the crew.  It's always good to play or run a game where, in the end, you walk away eager for the next session.  It happens pretty frequently for me these days, which I'm thankful for.  Playing with good people helps, and while I've played in my fair share (and then some) of bad games with people whose company I didn't enjoy recently my experiences have been very positive.

I'm currently playing in a Labyrinth Lord game where we have been exploring Stonehell, kicking in one door at a time and clobbering bad guys.  We take our fair share of beatings, but that just adds to the 'danger-factor' and the camaraderie we (the players) share.  It's alot of hack-and-slash, a few traps, and alot of monsters.  For a couple of hours each week I allow myself the freedom of the mega-dungeon, and it really is liberating.  There's a small bit of role-playing, but the majority is action, which suits me just fine!

AD&D1e is on the weekly schedule for a few fun hours as well, and this game I run.  Nothing makes the memories come alive like a 1e game, even if the retro-clone is nearly identical, there's something about the trappings and rules of 1e that are somehow mystical and magical to me.  I crack open my books (ok, my PDF's) and instantly i'm transported to my childhood.  OSR rulesets are starting to appear on Fantasy Grounds with some regularity, and the community has been hot to make them available and support them.  DCC, Swords & Wizardry, and Basic Fantasy are all either available or in-the-works.

I know I live in the past....alot.  I do it with movies, music, and tv too.  I'd rather watch Spiderman 1967 than some newer, MTV toon of Spidey.  Games are the same for me.  I know there's alot of interesting new stuff out there, but I'll tell you what I really wanna play...

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, & Other Strangeness: This was my gateway drug, the game that revealed to me just how much fun could be had outside of the traditional fantasy and Sci-Fi games I had been playing up to that point.  Creating a smart-mouthed alligator mutant who loved cinnamon toothpicks and had a small mutant bird as a sidekick (in his mouth most of the time) was somehow very freeing, and really taught me alot about roleplaying more extreme characters.  I had a number of Palladium fantasy books by that point, so the system was familiar and comfortable.

Robotech The Role Playing Game:  While we're in the Palladium zone, I had alot of love for this game.  It helped that I was watching a boatload of anime at this point, including all of the Macross vids.  Honestly, I don't know if we ever played this game correctly, but the thought of pushing through the enemy in my Veritech fighter was major fun!

Cyberpunk 2020: Night City never saw me coming.  I was a force of nature, wheeling and dealing my way to the top of a pile of chrome and wires and a crap-load of guns.  Sure, I needed a permanent Med-tech or three on staff to keep my Street Samurai in tip-top shape, but it was worth every Nuyen.  I was such a huge cyberpunk fan, having discovered the work of William Gibson back in the early 80's, that playing this game was one of the highlights of my gaming career.  the Mechanics for the game were a mess, and dying was easier than OD&D, but the books were really well put-together and evoked an impressive ambiance that was addictive.  I never could run a successful game, but I was an avid player.

Warhammer Fantasy Role Play :  Not since I had bought my AD&D1e books had a game entranced me in the same way as WFRP 1e.  A massive hardbound volume with really evocative art on the cover sucked me in immediately.  The mechanics were just as interesting, and far more gritty and deadly than 1e.  I really appreciated the combat and the carer path systems, but it was the Old World setting that really was the icing on the cake.  I spent several years running a campaign in WFRP, though I couldn't find anyone to run the game so I could take a turn playing.  It was a small letdown.  I bought many of the extraneous sourcebooks like the City of Middenheim and Realms of Sorcery, and much of that content makes its way into my fantasy games now.  It really stuck with me, and is a great game if you stumble across a copy.

On the weeks where not everyone could show up at game time, we played a ton of Steve Jackson's Car Wars and Nuclear War, both great card games.

I know I'm not the only one.  There's more of you out there than the 'kids' playing 5e or MTG suspect (OMFG, did he just crap on 5e?).  We're not letting go of the past, oh no.  Instead we're shining a bright LED light on that pile of RPG's!

What games from your past would you like to play again?  Looking to run some Paranoia!?!?  Need to spend a bit of time planning a Top Secret! campaign?  Maybe you miss running that duck in Runequest, or that freaky alien in Jorune?


  1. Don't forget the other Palladium monster, RIFTS. I ran that game for years and never ever had a balenced party. It was... a headache haha

  2. Gamma World... which always ended up being a Max Max parody of some form due to the fact the movie had come out when we were playing it back in the day...

    1. lol... I meant "MAD Max"... but it was MAX!!!

  3. Car Wars! Back in my bike-riding days I'd spend a lot of time at the local hobby shop. One day I showed up just as some guy was starting a Car Wars demo - one car versus several bikes. I ended up buying the boxed set. Good times.

  4. Bunnies and Burrows.. Rabbits hated those animal testing labs with a passion.

  5. Ok, I finally got around to reading this because I'm notoriously late for everything. First off, I'm old also.... maybe a tad older than you. Reading that brought back some many awesome memories. The Duck on the cover of AppleLane from Runequest, Spend hours designing a new super car for Car Wars along with never talking about secret societies and the list goes on. I can appreciate everything that was mentioned. But one game stood out for me as young GM. "Traveller" This was the game that brings me back to my roots. I still binge watch the 14 episodes of Firefly over and over. The game still tugs at my heart and perhaps one day I'll bring back to the table for a little bit of a change of pace.