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Saturday, August 11, 2012

PDQ Week pt 6: The rest of the gang

So we're getting near the end of the week (I may take day 7 as a break, we'll see) and I've still got a fair collection of various PDQ games. So I'll go ahead and bunch the rest of them up together here.

Vox

Vox is...its...a bit tough to describe.

Vox is a bit like dead inside, a surreal mix of bizarre pseudo-philosophy mixed with horror, with a bit more on the "horror" side of things. The main gimmick (for lack of a better term) of the game is that each player has voices in their head. These voices have their own Qualities and are each role-played by another player (who also has their own character with their own voices controlled by another player). The exact nature of the voices is left to the GM to determine, or more likely not determine. If there's one common thread throughout Vox it's a pervasive, vaguely creepy ambiguity. The truth may be out there, but it is not necessarily something that can be known, only guessed at. Unfortunately this can make it very difficult to easily run, as there's no "default" mode of play or easy answer to the question "what should we do next"? However, if you do gather enough inspiration to put together a plot it creates an interesting and bizarre style of play.


While the Voice mechanic is interesting the real gold I found in Vox was the settings. The game comes with 4 settings....a modern conspiracy setting, a Victorian alternate history setting, a 1920's cosmic horror and a futuristic (maybe?) place called the Facility. The Facility was my personal favorite and one of my biggest regrets as a GM is that I have yet to be able to successfully manage to play a game set in it.

Sadly Vox is no longer available. The author has decided to bow out of the RPG industry and there's no current way to get ahold of the game. Who knows, this may change some day and hopefully it might eventually be available at least in pdf form.

Ninja Burger

Ninja Burger is an RPG by the same author as Vox, but fortunately it is still available through e23. Which is good because never has there been a game more suited to PDQ, I recall one of the first things I thought when I saw that ninja burger was being released for PDQ was "damn, that's just what I wanted to do!"

I'd explain Ninja Burger but the name really says it all. You're ninjas who deliver fast food. No delivery is too remote, no call is too dangerous. Occasionally you also battle pirates, samurai and other competitors in the fast food racket. It kind of epitomizes PDQ's "beer and pretzels" roots in that it's designed for fast pick-up-and-play games with minimal fuss and a concept that allows you to simply say "okay, everyone your manager gives you tonight's delivery address, get to work".

As a side benefit, the Ninja Burger default setting is San Francisco and the game provides and incredibly detailed write-up of the city.

Pirate, Monkey, Ninja, Robot: The RPG

Along with Dead Inside PMNR: The RPG is a PDQ elder but while Dead Inside is fairly serious PMNR is definitely beer-and-pretzels all the way through. It's a wacky game to pick up and play whenever you're too tired, burned out or frustrated to come up with any sort of coherent plot and just want to play something crazy and fun. Needless to say the game's pretty simple (it's adapted from a boardless board-game) and while it's fun there's not much there that you'd find that you'll be "missing" at this point in PDQ's history. You could easily play the game with just knowledge of the concept and most any other PDQ product in hand. But it's fun and if you're a PDQ completionist it's just 6 bucks to pick up the pdf.


Temple of the Lost Gods

There's not exactly a lot to bring up here...it's not a setting or even a full set of PDQ rules. However this little demo of PDQ written up by Chad way back when is a great way to show just how flexible PDQ can be and it provides a very compact and useful magic system. Really this is all you need to play an interesting, if perhaps a bit basic, PDQ fantasy game and it's a good way to get started (along with the free core rules) for those who aren't familiar with PDQ but are interested in trying it out.





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