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Old 2004-02-21, 22:20   Link #1
Michael Hopcroft
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Tabletop RPGs

Are there any players of anime-based tabletop pen-and-paper RPGs on this forum? being an RPG publisher myself, I am interested in what would attract anime fans to a game and what people are playing these days, if anything.

Aisde from the games I publish, I mainly play games like BESM and BESM d20 but there is very little I won't try at least once. I also wonder if people play games like the HERO System, GURPS, Dungeons & Dragons and d20 Modern in distinctly anime flavorings. And i wonder what people play in countries other than the United States.

I'm trying to build a community of anime roleplayers in the form of spam removed, but so far have met with limited success. Perhaps the heavy emphasis on my own products gets in the way a bit.
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Old 2008-12-19, 17:36   Link #2
einhorn303
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Tabletop RPG's

I'm really surprised, and a bit disappointed, then whenever I look at the "Gaming" section on most anime forums, it always seems to be 100% electronic games. I think there are a lot of good things about tabletop gaming...the face-to-face social interaction, the ease of customization and personalization.

I think tabletop RPG's, especially, have a lot of creativity and imagination that you can't get out of just pressing buttons and watching a screen. RPG's have affected anime too...this has been said before, but anime like Record of Lodoss War were actually based on D&D replays. Night Wizard, a Japanese RPG, was also adapted into an anime. And all the indie RPG's out there are basically doujin products...small print, made for a small but rabid fanbase, little paper portals to original created worlds.

Lately there seems to be a real resurgence in anime or otaku oriented RPG's, too. The market is full of stuff like:

Cthulhutech (Various mecha series (Evangelion especially) + Lovecraft Mythos)
http://www.cthulhutech.com/

Maid: the Roleplaying Game (Maids)
http://maidrpg.com/

Exalted (Epic fantasy)
http://www.white-wolf.com/exalted/index.php

Panty Explosion (Psychic schoolgirls/horror)
http://www.atarashigames.com/PEhome.html

Dive into the Sky (Mecha musume homebrew)
http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Dive_into_the_Sky

It might have started with Maid: the Roleplaying Game getting translated, the first Japanese TRPG ever translated to English. Moe RPG's are lots of fun, for all the ronery otaku out there, you actually get to *be* the little girl...although stuff like that is less awkward to play over IRC than in real life, ww.

Do you play tabletop RPG's? Does it make sense for RPG'ers and anime fans to have a big intersection? If you've never played one before, I recommend finding a good group and giving it a try. It can be a really rich and rewarding experience.
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Old 2008-12-19, 18:31   Link #3
NightWish
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As you can see from the fact I've merged your thread, this has been brought up before. I thought it had been discussed in more depth, but I can't find the thread(s) now (probably lost in 2005).

Personally I've never tried one of the specifically anime base P&P RPGs, but only because the people I play with most frequently are not that into the themes on offer. I can't imagine Panty Explosion doing it for me . Anime is a broad brush though, so elements from many of the shows I like can be found in many of the games I've played. In fact, having said that, I suppose I have played one technically, as FASA were forced to remove the LAM 'Mech designs from their BattleTech game because of the striking similarity to Macross variable fighters

Incidentally, we also have a group devoted to exactly this topic.
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Last edited by NightWish; 2008-12-19 at 18:37. Reason: Struck out the redundent word
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Old 2008-12-19, 22:45   Link #4
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Wow, never heard about these, seem to very fun, finding a group with time will be a problem though >_<!
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Old 2008-12-20, 14:37   Link #5
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Personally, I prefer the classics. Dungeons and Dragons is always good for a laugh. And as for your discussions of face-to-face gaming, why not bring up the boundless nerdy joys of board games in general?
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Old 2008-12-20, 16:23   Link #6
Keroko
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I decided to click the Maid RPG link, and decided to buy the book. I'm hoping the hardcover will be in stock again soon, because we read the PDF rules, and much fun was had before we even started a game.
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Old 2008-12-20, 22:22   Link #7
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Out of the suggested game sites.. The games seem to have odd themes, but the character designs and animations seem to be top notch. And no, I don't play tabletop rpgs. Actually, I just heard the term "tabletop rpg".

An RPG publisher? That's cool.. People who watch anime tends to play games that feature anime-like animation and character designs. More over, the popular genre among the anime audiences would be RPG rather than FPS. As to the games you mentioned, to be honest I have never heard of any of it, except Dungeons & Dragons which I have never played before.

Spam removed? It is rather difficult to guess what your objective is as it does relate to building a community of anime gamers. Limited success? But why...? What sort of products do you make? Considering that its limited success, I assume the RPGs you make aren't the ones sold in most stores as in console gaming, I supposed.

Personally, I mainly play ps2 RPG games, such as the Shin Megami Tensei or games from Square-Enix, Tri-Ace, and NISA. Not sure if this answers your questions as to what some people play and like though.
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Old 2008-12-21, 06:18   Link #8
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It's all about Shadowrun for me. Sitting somewhere beteen fantasy with Elves, Shamans and the like and Near future Sci-fi/cyberpunk with computer hacking, The Matrix and Cyberware, it's like the perfect blend that any type of genre fan can get into.
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Old 2008-12-21, 06:52   Link #9
Sheba
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I played Advanced Dungeon & Dragons 2, Stormbringer, a bit of Kult .
In occasions, I have played a little bit of Vampire The Masquerade, the very compelling modern occult RPG Nephilim.

Lately, it was mostly Legend of the Five Rings.

The most epic campains I played were AD&D2 and Mutant Chronicles.

Mutant Chronicles is pretty much a love story. The scope is epic, the universe (the solar system) is exotic (thanks to terraformed Venus that still kept its unique rotation to revolution ratio) and yet familiar. You can play a large range of scenario, spy thrillers, mob gangs drama, Aliens-style last stands, gritty WWI-style warfare, vietnam style conflicts, corporate intrigue or supernatural investigation.
With a new edition on progress, it is not a bad idea to get interested in the universe if you did not know about it. They are trying to distance further from WH40k by trying to achieve a style of retro-tech sci-fi with a WW2 flair (Think Fallout 3 with WW2 elements). If the idea of playing a character like "Veteran Blood Beret of the Clan Bartholomew"or "Agent of the CBI who occasionally get into dirty business like funding terrorist cells" or "Etoile Mourante of Bauhaus Corp." or "Inquisitor who slowly doubt the means of his Brotherhood and slowly sees his faith crumbling" don't strike your fancy, I don't know what will.

Otoh, if you still want to have your anime-ish character, you can go for Mishima and be a Samurai, Ronin, Demon Hunter, Triad member or a cyborg ninj- I meant Shadow Walker.

Last edited by Sheba; 2008-12-21 at 07:08.
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Old 2008-12-21, 14:40   Link #10
TinyRedLeaf
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Originally Posted by einhorn303 View Post
Do you play tabletop RPG's? Does it make sense for RPG'ers and anime fans to have a big intersection? If you've never played one before, I recommend finding a good group and giving it a try. It can be a really rich and rewarding experience.
I no longer play tabletop RPGs. The reasons are simple:

1) Tabletop RPGs take too much time to set up. Working adults don't have that much time to spare.

2) Working adults also have wives, girlfriends or children to look after. Again, that means we do not much time to spare.

3) Computer RPGs are much prettier and faster-paced today, and require far less fuss than tabletop RPGs to set up. Also, MMORPGs today provide most of the interactive elements that used to be the major draw of tabletop RPGs. Pen-and-paper RPGs were popular back in the 1980s because there were few, if any, alternatives to "fantasy" gaming. That is no longer the case today, hence the demise of the tabletop game.

========

Looking back, the 1980s were the watershed between "traditional" and "interactive" books. That was when Choose Your Own Adventure books first appeared, followed closely by the Time Machine series. Before long, Ian Livingstone and Steve Jackson created the Fighting Fantasy series, which sparked the beginning of fantasy game books, the true precursor of all computer roleplaying games today.

And that was how I first came to learn about roleplaying games, through classic game books like Lone Wolf, Way of the Tiger, Sagard the Barbarian, Blood Sword and GrailQuest (ahh, the dreaded Section 14...)

One thing led to another, and soon my classmates and I were experimenting with various tabletop game systems, starting with the then "Basic" rules set of Dungeons & Dragons (back when the franchise still belonged to TSR, not Wizards of the Coast), then moving on to more esoteric franchises like Dragon Warriors and Recon. We also played various board-game versions of Talisman.

The closest we got to playing an anime-inspired RPG was Palladium's Robotech roleplaying game, obviously because Macross was the top-selling mecha franchise of the time.

By the time I was in high school, I had drifted apart from my gaming buddies, and started delving into Dungeon & Dragon's Oriental Adventures, back when its official campaign world was still Kara-Tur, and not the Five Rings setting used today.

I was supposed to set up my own Oriental Adventures campaign, but by then, EGA video cards started to make early computer strategy games like Romance Of The Three Kingdoms and Nobunaga's Ambition very attractive. That marked the height of my addiction to roleplaying games (and the nadir of my academic studies ).

By the time I got to junior college (Singapore's equivalent to freshman and sophomore years at an American college), I had already grown out of roleplaying games — or so I thought. Just before enrolling to university, I rediscovered the genre through MUDs, my favourite being the history-inspired LegendMUD, which still draws a niche following today. If I'm not wrong, one or two of its lead programmers worked on the grand-daddy of all modern MMORPGs, UltimaOnline. I can see the obvious influences, such as UO's classless, skill-based system, which I first discovered in LegendMUD.

If there's one thing I've gained from role-playing games, it's my abiding love for historical trivia. But I rue the effect it had on my studies, especially during the most critical juncture of my academic career. Let's just say it went as far as to ruin my chances of getting a scholarship, and forced a chillingly sober re-evaluation of my life goals by the time I was 20.

If I could change it all, I would. So, not surprisingly, my attitude to roleplaying games today is somewhat mixed. Yes, I find roleplaying games (mostly computer-based today) lots of fun, but at the same time, I take care not to get as carried away with them as I once did.

Roleplaying games can be rich and rewarding, yes, but with only very large caveats. Getting out of your basement to spend time with your friends is much more rewarding, in my opinion.

Last edited by TinyRedLeaf; 2008-12-21 at 14:56.
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Old 2008-12-22, 12:25   Link #11
nagare
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TableTops RPG
I don't play them much anymore because I can't seem to find the time, and it's very difficult to organize sessions with friends especially if a game is to last several sessions.

Personally, I love them.
My personal favorite system is GURPS because of its flexibility and adaptability. Although GURPS greatest draw is also its flaw. Cthulhu-like system tends one we use more often than not, due to the horror genre being relative easy to build a quick one off game if my friends are able to meet for those games.

D&D/d20 systems.
I haven't played many games in these system. But the ones I have played, were interesting. I do like the classic RPG feel of the games, but I haven't been too fond of the system itself. The non-battle skills feel very limited to me, and the battles, while fun, I personally rather play a full on tabletop miniature war game for the most part. Some of the settings are great though. IIRC Record of Lodoss Wars was originally supposed to be a D&D pilot. I personally love the Iron Kingdoms setting, but haven't really played much of the RPG side of things there. I personally feel that neither 3.5 or 4e (which the company did not adopt) isn't a good system for that world, however.

I hear Savage Worlds is a good system I would love to try, but never had the time to really sit down and learn or find someone who have played it. Exalted is also another system I love to play once someday.

Other systems I have played: Heroes, Champions, Mutant and Mastermind, Buffy, Armies of (something - I can't remember the full title) and Mage... I only played very limited amount of games (maybe 1~3 in each) but they all had things that were pretty interesting to them. Heck, I never watched a single episode of Buffy, but I found that system fun to play in.
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Old 2008-12-22, 13:39   Link #12
krisslanza
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Keroko mentioned Maid RPG. I actually managed to use that to play over an IRC chat... It probably doesn't have the same 'impact' but with a simplistic system like that it's pretty easy to do something like that even over the net...

Just minus the table
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Old 2008-12-22, 13:51   Link #13
Sheba
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Originally Posted by krisslanza View Post

Just minus the table

The day internet allow to eat everyone's potato chips and drink their sodas, tabletop RPGs over the net will truly take their meaning.

PS: I guess skype allow to convey NERD RAEG already.
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Old 2008-12-23, 10:02   Link #14
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I decided to click the Maid RPG link, and decided to buy the book. I'm hoping the hardcover will be in stock again soon, because we read the PDF rules, and much fun was had before we even started a game.
Sweet! (I'm the dude who produced it; my buddy Nekoewen translated it). Glad you had fun reading it, and hopefully you'll get a chance to play it at some point (even the simple/wacky/random-roll-adventure method).

I need to post info on the IPR page as there's been a lot of questions on that subject, but basically the PDF will continue to be available, however we totally sold out of the stock of book. So what we're doing is putting together some edits (grammar, spelling, etc) for the new version of the PDF (which you'll get an email about through IPR once it is available), and use that PDF to create another print run of the book. The physical books will be out in... dunno, maybe Feb?

Also, we're going to be posting more free stuff on the website next year: Scenarios, more lists (!!!), replays and so on.

Also, not to plug too heavily (I've been an animesuki series leecher for years, only recently signed up for a forum account), but next year will see the release of "Tenra Bansho Zero", a J-RPG that I've been working on for *years*. Basically a high-fantasy feudal era Japan (giant mecha, mage-ninjas, ultrasamurai, the works) with the "gonzo anime" dial turned up to "11". It's a light classic system of skills and stats and stuff, with a metagaming system on top of it that basically rewards coolness and melodrama. Hopefully it'll be out by the Spring or so (the link is in my sig, with pics and stuff). I was working on it long before Maid, but Maid gave me an opportunity to go through the motions of producing an RPG to see what it was like, and Tenra is the "real deal".

-A to the K
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Old 2008-12-23, 11:43   Link #15
krisslanza
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I did mention Maid RPG is pretty awesome right?
Not to mention in just how utterly insanely random kind of Maids you can make. I should really get the motivation to do another session over IRC when I'm not so... Lazy.
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Old 2008-12-23, 12:27   Link #16
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Oh man Tabletop RPGs.
I play them avidly even today... well D&D 3.5 anyway.
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Old 2008-12-27, 02:39   Link #17
einhorn303
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Wow, never heard about these, seem to very fun, finding a group with time will be a problem though >_<!
Sites like nearbygamers.com are a necessity. RPG'ing isn't just playing a game, it's building up a whole social network and making friends. Well, or you can just try to get players on 4chan /tg/ or some other dig on the internet, that's worked out pretty well for me so far.

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Also, we're going to be posting more free stuff on the website next year: Scenarios, more lists (!!!), replays and so on.
Cool. I think there are two other Maid RPG supplements out in Japan...something like "Yume no Meido" and something else. Might those be printed as well? Or maybe they were already included in the English version of the book, I'm not quite sure.

I actually managed to find a copy of Maid: The Roleplaying Game at my local gaming store. They're really awesome at stocking indie RPG's...not only did they have Maid, they had tons more I'd heard great things about and want to play (Spirit of the Century!).

I'd love to see more moe/otaku RPG's. Other subjects have been pretty well fulfilled by Western RPG's. Exalted, Shadowfist, (motherfucking RIIIIIFTS)...well, I guess the "drama system" I've heard of sounds pretty cool, but a lot of systems already have something like that, or often have similar house rules. ("That was awesome, James....200 exp.") Although I guess there are some limits to the likelyness of moe RPG translations...we won't be getting Cute Sister TRPG in English anytime soon, will we?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TinyRedLeaf View Post
Roleplaying games can be rich and rewarding, yes, but with only very large caveats. Getting out of your basement to spend time with your friends is much more rewarding, in my opinion.
Too be honest, I think that tabletop RPG's just have a certain "something" that computer games will never be able to capture. The freedom, the imagination...well, games like Fable 2 start to come close, but it's still not quite the same experience.

Also, I think it can be just as fun to spend time with your friends *inside* your basement as out, right? :P

Quote:
Originally Posted by NightWish View Post
I can't imagine Panty Explosion doing it for me .
I swear, the name is misleading, it's more like Akira than Negima ww. The name just catches people's attention much better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by krisslanza View Post
I did mention Maid RPG is pretty awesome right?
Not to mention in just how utterly insanely random kind of Maids you can make. I should really get the motivation to do another session over IRC when I'm not so... Lazy.
Hey, I'm totally up for that if you do sometime in the future. I'm trying to get over my "GM's curse"...every time I play an RPG, I have this unavoidable tendency of being the GM. I just gravitate to the role, somehow. I want to experience the nice, stress-free life of a PC someday. And I have a hankering for some roleplaying right now.

You weren't ever on #dits-ooc, were you?
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Old 2008-12-27, 03:35   Link #18
AnimeTheme
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I liked and played D&D and AD&D with friends in schools.. but that was really a long time ago, though that was really some experience never reproducible with computer RPGs. Really missed those days lol
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