View Full Version : Discuss: A Game Idea

2010-09-29, 07:51 AM
I love different games but I have never much had the opportunity to play them. I know few people who like games in the same way I do, and I don't really have the time to seek out a gaming group since my work and location are erratic.

So when I say I have an idea for a game I can only guess at how much work lies ahead of me if I want to actually go anywhere with it. I've had the idea for a little while now, and I think it's kind of likely that someone else has already designed it. So if you see any obvious simillarities; or massive holes that need filling, tell me.

Here's the idea. Nuclear war breaks out and kills a lot of the population, yes, it's post-apocolyptic. Of course, some people survive, for a myriad of reasons. Over time the radiation beings to horribly mutate them as they battle for survival and dominance in the new world.

I'm thinking that instead of things like races and classes there will be age groups and proffesions. I don't think Children etc will be PC's, but teens probably will. After that you can play any age up until around fifty or so, anything higher seems a bit too unlikely. Different age groups will come with different abilities etc. Proffesions will be wide ranging and hopefully fun. You'll have mundane things like students and businessmen, to soldiers, scientists or criminals. The only trouble I can see here will be balancing these.

There will either be your basic levelling up system, or more complicated rules that allow you to become more proficient with things the more you use them. You will also regularly recieve 'mutations', which would be either randomised or selected by the players. These could include things like sprouting tentacles or getting pyschokinetic powers (although those would be higher level mutations, to start out with you might get, say, thick skin, or massive muscle growth).

In addition to your normal 'stats', each character will have a designated number of sanity points. In a world gone mad it's imperative that your character doesn't also; if they lose all their sanity points then they will become an NPC who rages on the group until killed (there may be special rules for other characters to reason with an insane character, but probably not).

Players will gain sanity points for things like human interaction and achieving goals, they will lose them when their friends are killed or when they get mutations. These will not be the only ways to gain or lose sanity points, but probably the main ones.

There will also be some fun with ballistics. I intend to include in the overall plot that all of earth was gearing for a 'world war three' style scenario, and scientists had invented many weapons that are only dreams today. So yes, you'll have guns that shoot acid, giant chainsaws, flame throwers, whatever you want.

One of the problems I can see is making a real goal for a character - you're meant to stay alive and stay sane, but those are things to avoid, not goals. I suppose it might be different for various characters.

Not sure whether to make this a role playing game or a card game. Both have fun prospects.

So, thoughts?

2010-09-29, 08:31 AM
There are a lot of potential goals here, and as for the system, I would recommend something classless and skill based, levels really aren't the norm, that's just how D&D does it. Mutations are a bit trickier, but as long as you have a simple enough system, still easy. Fudge strikes me as the obvious one here, but it usually does.

Regarding goals, one of the most obvious is the characters who want to find someone. A college student looking for their girlfriend/boyfriend/fiance whatever, a teenager looking for a younger sibling, and older person looking for a child, and any number of other scenarios. Toss in a few rumors about some untouched area of the old world, still functioning, and there is a second hook.

2010-09-29, 02:47 PM
If you insist on classes, d20 Modern might fit what you are attempting. You can use parts of D&D with the system (such as wild Psionic talents) and I do believe there are some books that deal specifically with mutants and mutations. The core ruleset is available online, although the mutation sourcebook is likely not.

The basic World of Darkness rulebook strikes me as something that could work. It has a humanity system, with the more immoral choices you make, the more humanity you lose. Normally this is accompanied by mental derangements, although if you wanted to make some up, you could replace them by physical mutations. (or keep them as mental derangements, if you choose) There is no "mutation" sourcebook for WoD, although many of the sourcebooks - from shapeshifters, to zombies, to immortal clockwork men, to ghosts - could be taken or changed to represent mutations. It would require some work to do, though.

All Flesh Must Be Eaten strikes me as a system that could make your idea work, although I haven't looked at it myself. I'm not sure if it deals with mutations or sanity effects.