*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
July 27, 2014, 10:18:16 PM

Login with username, password and session length
Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Search:     Advanced search
46709 Posts in 5588 Topics by 13297 Members Latest Member: - Shane786 Most online today: 28 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: [1]
Print
Author Topic: I need your gamer knowledge!  (Read 7276 times)
Marshall Burns
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 573

American Wizard


WWW
« on: January 06, 2009, 12:11:43 PM »

Hey everyone, I need you to help me with some research.  I need to know about all the RPGs out there with post-apocalyptic themes, and I need to know as much about them as I can.

I need to know this because I have this idea, really for a publicity stunt, for the Rustbelt, where I'm gonna say that it's the "first post-apocalyptic roleplaying game ever."  I'm gonna qualify this by saying that I think that the whole postapocalypso genre is centered around the horrible things people have to do to get by in that environment (thus providing a metaphor for the horrible things that we do in real life to get by), which is what The Rustbelt is about, and that all other "post-apocalyptic" RPGs are really just action-adventure RPGs with RoadWarrior makeup.

But, I don't have enough data to know if that's actually true.  So, help me out!
Gimme titles so I can read up on 'em.  If you have the time and the energy, feel free to brief me on the games themselves, so I don't have to do as much reading.

-Marshall
« Last Edit: January 06, 2009, 12:16:58 PM by Marshall Burns » Logged

Eero Tuovinen
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 2775


WWW
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2009, 12:49:39 PM »

Post-apocalyptic games are quite big in Finland, and Europe on general. It seems that there are many countries in which the games people are fond of are some combination of punk, destroyed society and grim realism. There are games in the bunch where it'd be horribly unfair to characterize the game as mere action adventure, even when they are not quite "about" the thing you identify as the core of the genre.

That being said, riddle me this: is Roadside Picnic a post-apocalyptic setting? The recent Finnish rpg Stalker certainly makes a big, big deal of the game being situated on the fringes and in the slums of normal society, which makes the game feel very post-apocalyptic even when the apocalypse in question only affected some 5% of Earth's population directly, while the rest continue with their lives without are care in the world.

Another riddle: is The Shadow of Yesterday a post-apocalyptic setting? The centerpiece of the setting is the conceit that a huge asteroid struck a fantasy world and shattered civilization. The game itself is set in the shattered remains of the world, but seems remarkably uplifting in that context - the message seems to be that destruction paves way for new things more than anything else.

Another Finnish title from the same designer as Stalker, Taiga (available in English, interestingly enough), gets perilously close to what you propose as the essence of postapocalypticism - it's clearly post-apocalyptic, what with devolved nomadic society, failed states all over the place and all that. Where you might find a flaw is in the focus of the game, as it's basically setting-based simulationism; the game has quite a lot of flavour centered around the horrible things you have to do, but it's presented as a fait accompli that the players experience, not any sort of creative challenge. The designer himself probably wouldn't pinpoint "horrible deeds" as the central idea of his game.

Apart from this sort of quibbling I can't name any post-apocalyptic games that had the sort of clear focus you require. But then, perhaps you might consider doing this publicity stunt of yours in a different way - why not publicize your claim in a slightly different form and put out a call for people to send you post-apocalyptic games? Promise them that everybody who sends you a post-apocalyptic game you don't already have gets Rustbelt in exchange as thanks for helping with your research. This way you can slip the notion of Rustbelt as the ultimate post-apocalyptic game in there naturally and without getting conceited about what is or isn't post-apocalyptic. Seems to me that making this sort of claim and trying to define the genre in the same sentence just opens the door for lots of arguments about what is or isn't post-apocalyptic.
Logged

Blogging at Game Design is about Structure.
Publishing Zombie Cinema and Solar System at Arkenstone Publishing.
Marshall Burns
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 573

American Wizard


WWW
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2009, 03:05:27 PM »

Well, my basic plan was to cause a shitstorm in a well-populated forum somewhere, like RPGnet or something.  'Cause I've noticed shitstorms about games there, and you end up with very polarized folks biting at each other's necks (if I'm lucky I'd get one camp on my side), and then you get all the folks who are quietly reading the thing, and thinking for themselves, and they're the folks whose attention I'd like to get.

However, that Taiga seems to actually meet my criteria of postapocalypso (and I suspect this Stalker thing might also).  It's not necessarily that the game is all about "horrible deeds," it's that they are the starting point.  Whether they're thematic decision points or "just the way things are" is irrelevant to me.

And I gotta say that "send me a postapocalypso RPG, I'll send you Rustbelt" does have a certain appeal to it...
Logged

greyorm
Member

Posts: 2293

My name is Raven.


WWW
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2009, 03:18:26 PM »

Well, there is Twilight: 2000/2013, which is post-apocalyptic, but no Road Warrior makeup. As I recall, it's basically "You're in the Army now! There is no Army anymore. YOU are the Army. Shit."

Now where's my free Rustbelt?!
Logged

Rev. Ravenscrye Grey Daegmorgan
Wild Hunt Studio
Marshall Burns
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 573

American Wizard


WWW
« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2009, 03:31:38 PM »

Oh jeez, I unfortunately read their description of their game "The Swing," and due to the following words:

Quote
The freeform Magick system was based on the Thelemic principles of WILL and Love,

I am now gagging uncontrollably.  Thelema?  Honestly?!?  Seriously, I can't think of a worse thing to base a game's magic system on, and don't even get me started on the merits of Thelema as occult philosophy.

But that's entirely off topic.
Logged

Eero Tuovinen
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 2775


WWW
« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2009, 03:39:25 PM »

That is off-topic, yes. I also have the honor of having retailed Swing. It's one weird game, perhaps the "worst" (in the sense of me having difficulty finding redeeming reasons for anybody to buy it) we've ever retailed in our quest to bring indie games to Finland. Surprisingly enough the game apparently has something to it, considering that it sold out much faster than many rather good games - perhaps my choice to characterize it as "Mage with lots of attention to realism" has something to do with it.
Logged

Blogging at Game Design is about Structure.
Publishing Zombie Cinema and Solar System at Arkenstone Publishing.
Marshall Burns
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 573

American Wizard


WWW
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2009, 03:49:10 PM »

Oh, and on the topic of TSOY:
It doesn't feel postapocalyptic to me.  Probably because there's a future for it that might even be nice.  In Rustbelt, Mad Max, Waterworld, the future only holds the promise of more and more shit, getting shittier and shittier.  Besides, in TSOY there wasn't really an apocalypse, anyway; just a cataclysm.

Although I gotta say that, for reasons I don't understand, the idea of "there was no moon before, now there is one" resonates powerfully with me.
Logged

Jason Morningstar
Member

Posts: 1467


WWW
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2009, 07:26:01 AM »

The Morrow Project (Do look at this one, it is ostensibly all about reconstruction and quite interesting in many ways)

Aftermath! of course

Palladium's Dead Reign and the TMNT stuff, which is all post-apoc (After the Bomb, etc)


Logged

Darcy Burgess
Member

Posts: 478


« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2009, 05:49:59 PM »

Hey Marshall,

There's Tribe 8, where the apocalypse came from within our souls and was made manifest as visceral, angelic creatures who have enslaved humanity.

Hunh.  Looks like there was a second edition that expanded the mythos & the geography.

Go Shitstorm!
D
Logged

Black Cadillacs - Your soapbox about War.  Use it.
Krippler
Member

Posts: 49


« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2009, 04:20:17 AM »

Sweden has various editions of Mutant. It's either about dungeon crawling and the rules are BRP getting less and less useful with each edition. The setting is quite awesome though mixing Disney, 18th century imperial Sweden and the socialist struggle of late 19th early 20th century with mutated animals being the niggers proletarians of the post apocalyptic society.

However: where does the Rustbelt system encourage doing horrible things? It basically makes you fight for what you believe, take drugs and get hurt alot.
Logged
Marshall Burns
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 573

American Wizard


WWW
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2009, 10:25:42 AM »

Don't read "do horrible things" as "commit atrocities."  Which happens, sure, but it's just one of many shades of horrible.

I'm talking about sacrifices and compromises; on the spiritual plane with the atrocities (which the System does encourage through the GM, whose authority is a derived state of the rules' authority), on the physical plane with the injuries, and on the smaller, mostly-Color plane of going without changes of clothes, drinking rusty water, working back-breaking hours of menial labor for a pittance, etc.
Logged

JoyWriter
Member

Posts: 500

also known as Josh W


« Reply #11 on: January 25, 2009, 06:36:52 PM »

How about calling it "the worlds first post-apocalyptic survival rpg"?

It's not about rebuilding, it's about running down.

But then worlds first is something people will quibble anyway, so how about answer that streight off in the obligatory "what is an rpg" section. In fact that would allow you to imply the structure of the rpg as expressed in your game without having to define rpgs for everyone, you'd just spell out what made your game different while implying it's similarity. Hopefully you could induce enough culture shock in the traditionalist while still keeping the interesting core inviting for everyone.
Logged
Pages: [1]
Print
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.16 | SMF © 2011, Simple Machines
Oxygen design by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!