RPGs I’ve bought but never played.

My recent post about what I’d bought got me thinking about those games that you buy but never get round to playing.

Now this could be an impulse purchase or it could be a nostalgia purchase or it could be simply down to the game looks cool and you just know you’ll find players for it.

I have a number of RPGs on my shelf that fit into this category and in all honesty I’ve not idea why I’ve not run them.  I also have a few Board Games on my shelf that fit into this category but I’m hoping to rectify their unplayed status soon.

I’m going to list 2 of those RPGs here and answer 3 questions – Why did I buy it?  Why have I not played it? and Will I play it now?


The End by Tyranny Games – Out of print but available as a PDF from RPGNow.
“God’s greatest creation, Mankind, was finally left to his own devices. They have many names, the Meek, the Lost Souls, the Forsaken, but they have all learned the same thing: “The Meek shall inherit the Earth” was not a promise… it was a warning.”

Why did I buy it?
I have an interest in theology, not a huge interest but enough for the subject matter of a post-biblical apocalypse to strike a chord. I bought it during my time at ORC Edinburgh and was looking for a d20 game that wasn’t D&D but was also a bit different.  The End seemed to tick those boxes.

Why have I not played it?
I think one of the reasons was down to timing.  My D&D game (Kilranthia) had kicked off and was proving more popular than I had expected it would and I had limited gaming time so chose to focus on Kilranthia.  Alongside that though I’ve always had a hesitation to run anything with a horror theme.  Largely because I don’t “get” horror and in turn don’t know how to run a horror game atmosphere wise.  Another reason is that the majority of those people I was gaming with at the time were teenagers and I was reluctant to cover that subject matter with them.

Will I play it now?
Mechanically the system is flawed but then again that can be aimed at practically all of the d20 products that were released at that time.  Setting wise it still intrigues me and given that I own all of the expansions I know I could get a lot of miles out of it.  Will I play it now though?  Not sure.  My gaming time is still fairly limited and I think it would benefit from a session longer than 3 hours (the length of session at the club I attend) to build momentum.  The subject matter is less of a concern now too and I’m less hung up on how I don’t “get” horror.

Brave New World by Pinnacle / Alderac Entertainment Group – Out of print but available from RPGNow in PDF and POD.
“You’re a delta, a person with amazing powers and a reason to use them.”

Why did I buy it?
As a comic book reader and a gamer I’ve always been interested in superhero games. With BNW you get something a bit different and something I later realised was quite special.  You play the heroes as in most games but the heroes are hunted by government sponsored super powered beings.  The game came out in 1999 and there’s a definite comparison to the events in Marvel’s Civil War event although the background to BNW begins in the 1960s.  The specialness of this game is that it’s uses an early version of the Savage Worlds rules and with the various supplements I own for the game (almost all of them…) the potential for a multi-year campaign exists.  Plus I’m a fan of Matt Forbeck‘s work so that came into it.

Why have I not played it?
As with The End above available time was a factor.  Alongside that though Mutants & Masterminds had just come out and I was having a bit of a renaissance with the old GW RPG of Golden Heroes, or as it’s now known Squadron UK.  Why not use the BNW setting using one of those systems instead?  I don’t know.  I get the impression from the books that the system and the setting were very carefully intertwined so it may be that another system might not have done it justice.

Will I play it now?
I keep thinking about it but never acting on it suggests that I won’t.  Maybe it needs a different group of players from the one that I currently game with or maybe it’s simply about the available time thing.  Ultimately I still like the setting a lot and mechanically I think it’s pretty sound.  If I can get the right group of players and again as with The End get a gaming slot longer than the 3 hours I’d most certainly give it a go.