I now have the care package of Japanese RPGs and such that Andy picked up for me in Japan. It’s been a while since I got more TRPG action, and now I have a huge stack of books to go through. (I put all of the pictures up on Flickr). I’ll be posting extensively about this stuff as I read it, but here’s a quick lowdown of my initial impressions.
First, here’s a picture of the loot. Be impressed.
Demon Parasite: Oni Mitama
Demon Parasite is a “Dark Henshin Hero” RPG, for stuff in the vein of Garo and Hakaider. This is apparently a complete game, basically DP with stuff based on Japanese mythology rather than just animals and such.
Dokodemo Aru Fushigi
This is a doujin from Kamiya-sensei’s circle. It’s a sort of Yuuyake Koyake/Witch Quest crossover book, with one replay for each, and a dialogue between Kamiya and Sasuu.
This is a doujinshi Touhou TRPG. I know next to nothing about Touhou, to be honest, but I’ve been meaning to rectify that. I’ve heard that it has an exceptionally good introduction to role-playing, and it does start off with a couple pages with cute little diagrams and such. Character creation apparently involves picking one of 8 flowers, and one of 5 races.
The second supplement for Yuuyake Koyake weighs in at 56 pages. The main attraction here is that you can now play as “Old Henge,” types of animals that were previously only NPC local gods: spiders, snakes, and centipedes. There are also rules for creating new types of animals, with turtles as an example. It’s also got two scenarios, some stories, and a new relationship chart.
Nekomusume Michikusa Nikki
This is the first volume of a manga by the Ike, the artist who did such wonderful artwork for Yuuyake Koyake. In some ways it’s a lot like YK, but it also goes into territory that the game definitely doesn’t. (Though if you’ve perused Ike’s site, it won’t exactly be unexpected…)
This is an earlier game from the publisher of Meikyuu Kingdom. The title is short for “Saturday Night Special,” and it’s a gonzo “Asian Punk RPG.” The artwork is apparently by the same artist that did most of the interior art for Meikyuu Kingdom, and pages without some kind of artwork are the exception to the rule. It looks like all kinds of crazy fun.
This game is about human-animal hybrids trying to fight against evil mad scientists.
School Days Panic (Sukupani)
This game is about total weirdos attending a normal high school. You can play a soldier, a la Full Metal Panic, but the character types also include kendo practitioners, cyborgs, magicians, espers, and vampires. The game uses playing cards, and there’s definitely something neat going on with using the cards to set up relationships with pre-made NPCs from the school.
Silver Rain Supplement: Werewolves vs. Vampires
The interior of this sourcebook is also full-color, and the art is all as high-quality as the cover. Now I have to look into getting the actual game.
Sword World 2.0 Book 1
Sword World was the first major original RPG from Japan. Record of the Lodoss War actually takes place in a corner of its setting. And this is the second edition. It’s in bunko (Japanese paperback) format, but it’s also nearly 400 pages, and this is just Rulebook I, basically the Player’s Handbook of Sword World. Skimming through, it comes off as being kind of a generic fantasy RPG, but with a definite crazy manga/Final Fantasy/Disgaea sensibility to it.
Tsugihagi Tayori Vol. 1
Another doujin from Kamiya’s circle. It has a game called “Kosodate Dragon” (literally “Raising a Dragon,” though I’d call it “Dragon Nursery” or some such if I translated it). It also has an article about the countryside that I’m looking forward to reading, a Yuuyake Koyake store (a straight-up story written in prose), an article on the “secret story of the birth of Absolute Slaves,” and the first part of what looks like an academic paper on RPGs.
Tsugihagi Tayori Vol. 2
This volume kicks off with Mugen Daiuchuu (Infinite Universe), a mini RPG about crazy rampages through the cosmos, accompanied by a replay that’s around twice the length of the actual rules. After that, there’s an article on NPC-driven game sessions, another Yuuyake Koyake story, and a couple of YK 4-panel comics, and finally the next part of that paper.
Tsugihagi Tayori Extra
A convention special thingy, this contains rules for making witch characters in Yuuyake Koyake, and stats for all of the signature characters from all three books.
This is a doujin RPG, apparently about high school monster hunters, kind of in the vein of the Persona PS2 games. Start Book A is a manga explaining the basics, about 20 pages or so. Start Book B is the actual rules. The text is very dense, but it has all of the stuff you’d expect from a TRPG, the full rules for playing, a replay, and 2 scenarios.
Yuuyake Koyake Calendar
Yeah, the year’s pretty much over, but it has more color artwork, and a mini-game on the back.
I had Andy pick up a bunch of Japanese-style dice, plus a tube of Meikyuu Kingdom ogrekin dice. Just because.
And… going through all that took me more than 2 hours. Wow.