RogerBW's Blog

RPG a Day: part 3 01 September 2014

Continuing with David F. Chapman's RPG a Day. Part 1 is here; Part 2 is here. I've also talked about these at greater length in the latest episode of Improvised Radio Theatre with Dice, a role-playing podcast which you should be listening to.

22nd - Best Secondhand RPG Purchase

Most of my GURPS 3rd edition collection is second-hand, or bought cheaply after 4th edition had come out. The book I find most useful that I bought second-hand? Millennium's End GM's Companion, because it has lots of floor-plans for a modern setting of the sort of places PCs go to get into trouble: hotels, bars, fancy houses, and so on.

23rd - Coolest looking RPG product / book

Practically anything from the early days of White Wolf. For maximum cool and minimum practicality, the original edition of Werewolf: the Apocalypse; it had "claw-marks" punched out of the cover which would engage in a fight to the death with any book you tried to shelve next to it.

No, I don't own a copy. If it's the coolest-looking book I own… probably Nephilim.

24th - Most Complicated RPG Owned

Living Steel. I'd say Phoenix Command, but that's not an RPG, it's a combat system (and it doesn't claim to be anything else). Living Steel also has a component list for every tech item in the game: you too can scavenge the ruins of a high-tech world looking for three medium springs and seventeen extremely small screws so that you can fix the gunsight on your powered armour.

25th - Favourite RPG no one else wants to play

In rules terms, probably Rolemaster/Space Master. Even I don't really want to play it much now, but I had an awful lot of fun out of it back in the day.

In campaign terms, I have a couple of campaigns I've run past several groups and nobody really seems enthusiastic about. Post-apocalyptic martial arts, modern martial arts/horror (though it needs to be tweaked such that martial arts are more useful than guns, which probably means chi powers being useful), a swashbuckling piracy game on Yrth, an ethical con/caper-based game (in all sorts of possible settings including Renaissance Florence) in the style of The Sting, Hustle or Leverage, a hunt around the world for places of arcane significance set some time 'tween-wars so that those lovely (and dangerous) early aircraft are the fastest means of transport…

26th - Coolest character sheet

Kung Fu CB Mamas on Wheels vs the Motorcycle Aztec Wrestling Nuns.

Oh, all right.

I have a lingering fondness for the old Lace & Steel sheet: clear, uncluttered, everything on it has a purpose. But I tend to use Phoenix for GURPS.

27th - Game You’d like to see a new / improved edition of…

I'd have said Rolemaster, but they did that, and it didn't lure me back from GURPS.

28th - Scariest Game you’ve played

That one I mentioned last time under #13, which involved the party realising that we'd all been infected with an alien retrovirus such that if we ever had children they'd be alien hybrids.

29th - Most memorable encounter

This varies as they happen, but the first one that comes to mind is Aldebaran, in the Infinite Cabal game. The Astral Plane is prone to beings that one might describe as… iconic.

Aldebaran (yes, that Aldebaran) was very polite and helpful, and quite possibly started my character on her current road to megalomania.

30th - Rarest RPG Owned

Probably Lords of Creation, picked up when a friend was moving and clearing out his cupboard. With all the modules, too. I haven't even opened it. One of these days.

Or maybe it's the pre-release copy of Murphy's World, picked up at GenCon. Or Interstellar Elite Combat, which you haven't heard of. There's a reason for that.

31st - Favourite RPG of all time

"Favourite" doesn't seem like the right word, but the one I reach for when I want to start a new game unless I have a reason to use some other system, the one I prefer to play if I have the option, is GURPS 4th edition.

See also:
RPG a Day: part 1
RPG a Day: part 2


  1. Posted by Owen Smith at 01:17pm on 01 September 2014

    In your "games no-one wants to play", I only recognise one of those as having been offered for wednesday evenings (the Yrth piracy).

  2. Posted by RogerBW at 01:47pm on 01 September 2014

    All of them were on offer in November 2011 when the group chose Age of Aquarius. The Yrth piracy one has been around for longer (I got the idea when I was reading 7th Sea and thinking how much better it would be with a sane rules system).

  3. Posted by Owen Smith at 08:31pm on 01 September 2014

    I had one of those Werewolf hardbacks with the claw mark cutouts on the cover. It was such a pain in the neck getting caught on things that I put it in the paper recycle bin, in virtually new condition, because I couldn't bear the thought of inflicting that cover on anyone else. I've never thrown away a role playing game in any condition before or since, but that blasted cover deserved it.

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