Sunday, April 1, 2012

One Thing Leads To Another--Games on the RPG Bucket List

Looking at all of the systems I have played and have enjoyed makes me once again turn my thoughts to games that I am curious to play, that people around me have talked about for years, but that I have never actually played.  At some point in my life I would like to have a shot at seeing how these things work and what they are like, but thus far, no matter how blasphemous it may sound, I've go nada experience with them.

Any Star Trek RPG

I've got experience with nearly every Star Wars RPG out there, to varying degrees, but I've never played in a single Star Trek RPG.  I've heard good things about several of them, and it's not for lack of interest, but I've never sat down and played, read, or owned a one of them.

Any World of Darkness RPG

This one is probably a lesson in RPG communities and how they interact.  Now, because I have lots of gamer friends that have played these, I'm curious as to how they work.  In my youth, when they first came out, I saw a lot of people play the elitist gamer card and poo poo other stuff I was playing to promote these, and it made me not care one whit to ever try them.  In my dotage, I'd be curious to give it a whirl.


I'm almost a little hesitant to put this one on the list, because I hear so many stories about entire gaming sessions spent planning a run, and how you never really ever want to get into combat, but I've got enough friends that have played around with it in the past that I'm still curious, and I still recall those days so many years ago when I saw the first FASA cover and wanted to give it a whirl, but didn't have the time or funds for it.

Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay

2nd or 3rd, or both.  It's interesting to me that it has a lot of the conventions of D&D/Pathfinder, and yet has a much murkier tone and much more fatalistic execution.  Perhaps my recent "conversion" to 40K  (at least the RPGs) makes this one more compelling to put on my "someday" list.

There are some newer RPG systems that I'd be interested in playing for a session or two to get a feel for them, but they haven't been around long enough for me to really think that I might be mission out on something by not having played them.

And, much like my list of things I don't have in my library but am not worried about getting them, there are a list of games that I know a ton of people have played, even in my circle of gamers, that I'm just not that compelled to try out.

HERO System

I hope Gopher Dave doesn't disown me.  It's not that the system is bad or wrong or anything.  But every time I have sat down to try and read through the rules and figure them out, I seem to develop this mental allergy to how the words are put together, my brain sneezes, and any comprehension shoots out at 200 mph.  It's like that really nice girl you don't want to break up with for me . . . it's not you HERO System, it's me.


I have seen GURPS floating around the periphery of gaming for most of the time I've been gaming.  I hear tons of people talk about it online, and once in a while I even hear of a real life gamer that I now with some experience with the system.  I even went so far as to start reading GURPS for Dummies at one point in time, just to see how the system behaves.  I think my recurring, deep non-interest, however, is based on a laughably simple hang up.  Having the word "Generic" as your first word in a title screams to me "no matter what this game system does well or what kind of tool it could be, it will have no personality of its own.  It is the unflavored oatmeal of RPGs."


It probably isn't fair, but Palladium has always struck me as an "all in" kind of thing.  Now, I think D&D and Pathfinder run that same risk.  "You play this RPG, you never leave this RPG, because we have endless stuff for you, more than you could ever use."  But I think Palladium hits that switch for me, as in "don't go down this path," because it's not even a matter of "hey, if I get burned out on fantasy, there are other RPGs," which can cause you to come up for air from D&D and Pathfinder, but Palladium has all of these genres and settings and stuff . . . it just seems like a massive investment that either works for you or it doesn't.  I can't put it better than that.

Now, the above games are games I'm interested in playing  (or not, in the case of the last three) in the interest of having a better, more rounded gaming background.  For satisfying curiosity and the like.  I'd like to play in them to get a feel, but I've got no strong feelings about them other than wanting to figure out if I'm missing something.  It may not be a fair assessment, and I'm willing to be persuaded.  I also have fewer gamers that I know, directly, that have shown an interest in the system, which kind of puts a wet blanket on this one.

I've only got one system, at the moment, that I would love to run, as a GM, but have not  (though thankfully I've not gotten a chance to actually play it, as a player).  That system is Call of Cthulhu.  Someday . . . when the stars are right.

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