Gremliny Stuff

Jun 26, 2010

Driven Insane by Apocalypse World

A couple of weeks ago, I was finally able to get my grubby hands on a copy of Apocalypse World, which has been the catalyst of much creativity over on Story Games. I too had been bitten by the bug, and it was one of many inspiring elements that helped me create SYRS!, though until this point, I only had a basic idea of how the system worked, gleaned from forum notes and the free character playsheets.
Now, that I have an actual, full version of the game, I have been devouring the rules and information therein, and have been inspired to make my own hacks for Apocalypse World. It won't be immediate, since I'm still working on the Beta test of Screw You Rebel Scum! (which probably won't be done now for another couple of weeks), Yami no Mono (which may be a few weeks before a version is ready too), and an ambitious secret project for the Little Game Chef challenge (which is due on July 4th). So, I got a full plate.
But that doesn't stop my mind from thinking of what I would like to create. Right now, three distinct ideas have bubbled forth, and each I think have equal merit.
•End of the Century: Based on the manga/movie series 20th Century Boys. The characters are all seemingly normal individuals who, during their childhood, had created some sort of end-of-the-world story that, in modern days, is eerily coming true! Through play, the characters would be solving the mystery of why and how this is happening, trying to remember events and people from 20 years earlier, and seeking the true identity of the villain, who may or may not be one of themselves! It could easily be tied to the actual Apocalypse World setting, sort of as a precursor, especially since the 20th Century Boys stories do have that hint of psychic abilities.
•Strange GENEration: Also based on a few manga/anime series, such as Speed Grapher and Darker Than Black. Here, some event has changed the world, but it is kept in the dark, a secret concealed by governments, shadowy businesses, and powerful criminal groups. Whatever happened, people have developed powers beyond human capability. These superhumans seem no different from other humans, until they use their abilities. But using these abilities bears some sort of horrible physical or psychological price. How did they get their powers? Why are there such strange side-effects? And what does it have to do with the stars changing color? I'm kinda excited particularly by this one, since I love superpowers and darker settings (which would drive my friend Conrad nuts, since he still thinks in terms of 4-color heroes), and the Apocalypse World rules would certainly provide a feel and system that would work well with it.
•Barriers of Reality: In this case, it would be a version of Call of Cthulhu. This is, quite possibly, a perfect fit for the Apocalypse World rules, since they almost parallel each other in tone and feel.

In any case, I won't be able to touch on any of these until my first three priorities are sorted out. And some of the other games that have been percolating, like Danger Quest, will just have to wait til later. Oh well. Still, I wanted to make sure that my ideas get spread through the internets (kinda like how my girlfriend will lick technology to claim it as hers).
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