Thursday, 27 August 2015

#RPGaDay 27: Favourite idea for merging two games into one


27: Favourite idea for merging two games into one

My favourite idea here is to steal something I like from one game and insert it into another. A plot hook, a rules mechanic, whatever. As mentioned under Favourite House Rule, my V20 game has the Humanity system from Requiem Second Edition bolted in, and also has some plot hooks borrowed from announcements about the unmade World Of Darkness MMO.

If I wanted to do a heavy and roughly equal merger, I’d probably go for a homebrew setting that resembles both rather than a straight-on crossover. For one thing, I run a lot of published and licensed settings, and I’m generally pretty careful about not crossing the streams there because Daleks popping up in Star Wars would bother me as a player. That’s fine in a clearly labelled one-shot or as the start of a premise but would bug me if they popped up in an ongoing game. It’s also usually easy enough to throw in the odd expy as long as it doesn’t conflict with the overall tone. A bait and switch in genre terms, like special guest Cthulhu in a non-occult-horror game, would really bug me.

And kitchen-sink settings that can take in other settings without so much as a ripple or a handwavy phlebotinum explanation help here too. When a costumed superhero turns up in a Buffy game, a wizard did it. Likewise, the film Warlock is clearly something that happened in the Buffyverse one weekend in the late 1980s.

Okay, a practical example: When running Adventure! as a modern super-spy game, I added Computers to the skill list, limited superhuman Knacks, and didn’t otherwise change character generation. But I used the gadget list from Spycraft first edition as a guideline to building PC gadgets in a much less rules-heavy manner, and picked up sourcebooks like its villain roster Most Wanted as inspiration too.

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