Category Archives: events

Maid RPG Is Coming

With love to all of the Masters...

Update: Hard to believe it’s been 5 months since I first posted this. This is the single most viewed post on my RPG blog, by a margin of 3:1 (and the next two most viewed after are also Maid RPG related). Anyway, for information on ordering, downloadable extras, and so on, check out the Official Maid RPG Website.

Maid RPG is a role-playing game designed by Ryo Kamiya and published in Japan by Sunset Games. And, with some substantial help from Andy Kitkowski, I will be publishing an English translated version. We’re aiming to release it at GenCon Indy 2008, and I’ll be posting full details as we get closer to the con. Although we hadn’t really planned it that way, Maid RPG will be the first ever Japanese RPG to be released in English. However, Andy will also be releasing a demo version of Jun’ichi Inoue’s Tenra Bansho Zero.

In Maid RPG, the players take on the role of maids who serve a Master who lives in a mansion. That’s the basic setup, but what ensues is often an excuse for the most bizarre chaos imaginable. This is a game that embraces randomness. Characters have random Special Qualities, ranging from Freckles and Glasses to Stalkers and Cyborgs. During the game, characters earn points of Favor by pleasing the Master, and one of the things they can spend Favor on is causing Random Events.

The English version of Maid RPG is going to be a compilation of the core rulebook and both supplements from the original Japanese version. That means it’ll include not only the core rules, but optional rules for butlers, randomly generated masters and mansions, seduction, costume changes, and special items, plus a grand total of 17 scenarios and three replays, and more besides.

You might be tempted to think that Maid RPG is the kind of thing you’d put on the shelf and never play, but I can say from personal experience that it is a perfectly playable (if very weird) game. It has the potential to become very twisted (though you can use it for light romantic comedy too), but it’s a lot like an anime version of Toon. With everything we’ll be packing into the English version, this one book will be able to provide months and months of gaming. You can even play it “random style,” and do everything off the cuff to kill time.

We’ll be launching a Maid RPG website next month! Stay tuned for more news!

If you have any questions about the game, feel free to comment here.

GenCon Indy: Sifting the Program Guide

Here’s my second post stemming from GenCon Indy 07. I went through the GenCon program guide looking for titles of games I didn’t recognize. Here’s the list, with URLs and short burbs from those websites wherever possible.

  • WEGS: “WEGS is an old school sword-n-sorcery rpg that revels in the ‘let’s get a game together tonight’mentality. Flavored with an air of whimsical high-fantasy, the rules are energized by an
    errant rule system which encourages players to take risks and, most of all, have fun.”
  • Dragon Storm
  • Witch Hunter: The Invisible World: “Such a duty is one that few would choose willingly, particularly if they understood the nature of their foes. And indeed, when those foes are invisible to the untutored eye, even a willing guardian would never know that his efforts were needed. But those precious few, given sight of the Adversary, and the will to face them, are the Witch-Hunters.”
  • Crusaders of the Holy Lands: “Crusaders of the Holy Lands is a 13th Night Role Playing game set at the time of the end of the First Crusade. The Crusaders have had a prosperous existence and look forward to a peaceful future.”
  • Cadwallon: “Cadwallon is a role playing game played with miniatures. It lets you represent one of the heroes of a tight-knit group of adventurers.”
  • Dark Refuge: “In the distant future the evil and tyrannical government of Mars has waged war on Earth. In the catastrophic battles that followed, refugees from Earth have fled to the furthest corner of the inhabited worlds to colony D-455, now called Refuge. Hidden, humanity looks forward to enjoying this eden. But this planet is not quite what it seems. Dimensional rips in the fabric of reality have allowed energy called Leyas to seep into the planet’s atmosphere.”
  • Chronicles of Ralmar: “The Chronicles of Ramlar is a fantasy roleplaying game, with the heroic setting of Eranon, one of the two major continents on a world created by Ramlar, the Maker of All. The premise behind the game is to create your own heroes and weave their own chapters of legend and legacy to be immortalized in The Book—the ultimate annals chronicling Ramlar’s world.”
  • Beyond Mere Mortals: “Beyond Mere Mortals is a unique d20 superhero roleplaying game that brings you all the excitement from your favorite comic books – brought to your game table from Noble Hero Press!”
  • Battlestations: “Battlestations is a pulp sci fi adventure boardgame. Ongoing adventures feature simultaneous ship-to-ship and boarding combat in space. Players work together as a starship crew aboard a ship of their own design facing referee-controlled forces. You’ll track the heroes’ positions on the starship layouts and the starships’ positions on the space map. The action in Battlestations is character driven. If you want the ship to turn, speed up, or launch a missile or blast the enemy ship, a hero has to take an action to make it so.”
  • The Great War of Magellan: “The vast and desolate galaxy of Richard Hatch’s new epic Sci-Fi saga, The Great War of Magellan is meticulously captured in this innovative new role playing game produced by DGA Games. The story is incredibly deep and offers a myriad of possibilities.”
  • Ustio: The Rebirth: “It is a ‘Neo-fantasy, non-Tolkien’ role-playing game. The world is not based on the mythos, geography, races or creatures of Earth; that is to say not intentionally, but many things could be likened to creatures or races of Earth in some fashion – the game was designed by humans after all. That disclaimer withstanding, the game, world, breeds, creatures and history of Hlomb are ours and not based of of any fiction or mythos known to us.”
  • Trin’ Dar: “Welcome to Trin’Dar. A continent formed from the aftermath of warring gods; a realm kept in balance by a superior race of Dragons that will only interact in the guise of mortals. Explore a world where the only absolute is the unknown.”
  • Four Colors al Fresco: “Four Colors al Fresco is a roleplaying game of pulp-style adventure, set in an alternate Renaissance. The setting is Renaissance Italy — as it might have been. Had there been fantastic, pre-industrial advanced technologies in the hands of a few.”
  • Sign In Stranger
  • Mundi Animalia: “Welcome to the world of Mundi Animalia. A comprehensive system that lets you play anything from an ant to an elephant. It includes 6 sets of supernatural powers using the KaSE system used in Edward Abbot Abbot’s Flatland (Inflated) the RPG. Mundi Animalia is primarily usable as an omni supplement to an existing campaign to show the hidden world of animals.”
  • Bounty Head Bebop: “This roleplaying game was inspired by the world of Cowboy Bebop and takes over where the animated series leaves off; presenting players the opportunity to jump in and experience the adventure, humor, and drama of Cowboy Bebop for themselves. So roll up a character, pop in your favorite jazz CD, and 3..2..1… LET’S JAM!”
  • So Ya Wanna Be A Rock ‘N’ Roll Star!
  • Skies of Glass
  • Cursed Empires
  • In Dark Alleys
  • Khymir
  • Adventures In Fantasy
  • Strikeforce: 2136: “The StrikeForce Role Playing Game is based on the Conflict System. Gaining experience, StrikeForce characters gain detailed skills and access to more powerful technology. The world is a place of violent competition between Corporations, Nations, and Independent Guilds. The characters are placed in a world, where on the surface they appear to be the power and strength of society. Only to discover they are simply pawn of the larger forces that run the world. From the UN to the rumors of Paulson units and Aliens, the StrikeForces tend to be the asset of choice to get the job done.”
  • Iridium Lite
  • Advanced Dimensional Green Ninja-Educational Preparatory Super-Elementary Fortress 555: “Based on the hit TV series of the same name, Advanced Dimensional Green Ninja-Educational Preparatory Super-Elementary Fortress 555 chronicles the lives of children attending the elementary school in the suburbs surrounding the city at the center of the universe.”

The following didn’t turn up anything on Google: Ascent, Bullseye, Cats, Century’s Edge, Demon Hunters, HiBRiD, Luchador: Way of the Mask, Mithuria, Realmsaga, Serial, Spacers, Supernatural, War Gods. Some have too generic titles to let me find anything, and for others it was just that nothing came up. Anyone out there have any info?

GenCon Indy 2007: Aftermath

I survived GenCon Indy. I put a long diary-type report on my LiveJournal, but here I’m going to concentrate on actual gaming stuff rather than complaining about how tired I was or commenting on the restaurants I went to.

I didn’t get all that much gaming in during the con. I’m actually sort of ambivalent about this because I feel like I should’ve gotten much more in (why else does one go to a gaming con?), but I was feeling too physically and emotionally spent to handle much in the way of roleplaying.

I did however run two sessions of Maid RPG as planned. I put together a fairly simple scenario, and had the players make characters and go at it for the remainder of the three hours. The first session was brisk, random, and fun. The second was the single strangest RPG session I’ve ever witnessed, and at times I had to put my head on the table and breathe deep to be able to handle it all. John Kim was there for the second one, so hopefully he can provide more useful commentary than my sleep-deprived brain could hope for.

I think I came home with a total of about 20 or so different books, a mix of indie RPGs and bargains, so I have entirely too much reading material now. I got all inspired to play more of these games with my friends, so I’m going to finally try to organize to play The Mountain Witch in the near future, as well as my neglected Fudge-powered Halo game. I also want to work more on my own games, and try to properly integrate playtesting into the process. Raspberry Heaven and Anime Dreams are actually relatively close to being testable, and I have a very solid idea what I want to do with the next revision of Tokyo Heroes (based largely on Filip’s advice, and in general trying to make it much less handwave-y).

I got to hang out with Andy K a little bit at the meetup on Saturday, so in addition to meeting a bunch of cool people I got hooked up with Meikyuu Kingdom, Demon Parasite, and Baka Baka RPG wo Kataru. The latter is a collection of a Japanese gamer’s columns on weird American RPGs, including some indie stuff, and even Panty Explosion (about which he notes that there are only two explicit psychic powers — levitating and making heads explode — but for some reason nothing to make panties explode). Andy did a very short demo of Tenra Bansho there, and I have to say it’s made of pure unadulterated awesome.

I still have a lot of other stuff to post about, but that’ll have to wait. Notably, The Hobby Games: The 100 Best book from Green Ronin is amazing so far, I have lots of games to read, and I went through and wrote down the names of all the RPGs being run in official games that I hadn’t heard of (like Bounty Head Bebop, basically Cowboy Bebop with the serial numbers halfway filed off).

GenCon Indy 07!!!1!

Tomorrow (very early) I head off to my first ever GenCon Indy, along with my friend Mike (and I’ll be meeting Guy Shalev in person for the first time). I think I’ve just about got everything ready. Packing clothes was easy; loading up my Zen Vision M and having all the information I need has proven pretty time-consuming. About the only thing I have firmly planned is running Maid RPG.

GenCon Indy 2007: The Pre-Game

My creative mojo is still on vacation — which is just as well since I have a crapload of school and work stuff to contend with — so nothing new to report on the RPG front except that my OVA-based dimension-hopping game (“Divine Machine”) is taking a long time to properly get off the ground, on account of a substantial portion of the group having various obligations to attend to for multiple successive weeks. I’m hoping we’ll be able to play on the 19th.

I’m beginning to wonder if GenCon Indy isn’t too damn big for its own good. It slipped my mind that event registration opened yesterday, and this morning (i.e., barely 24 hours later) about 2/3 of the RPG events were full. On the plus side that includes both of the Maid RPG sessions I’ll be running. Also, Guy tells me that since we’re staying at the Embassy Suites finding people to play with after hours shouldn’t be a problem. I’ll almost certainly wind up running Maid RPG at least one more time. Hopefully I can get in on some Shab-al-Hiri Roach, DitV, etc.

GenCon Indy!

So, today I finally decided for certain that I’m going to GenCon Indy this year. I’d been heavily leaning towards going anyway — both to have fun and to meet some of the neat people I’ve been interacting with online via Story Games and whatnot — but it was when Guy Shalev came on AIM and said that he was looking for hotel roommates that I decided for sure that I’m going. Registration doesn’t open until February 11, and there’s the matter of plane tickets to contend with (I’m probably going to have to fly out of SFO, since it’ll literally be cheaper than SJC by $100 to $150), but at least I don’t have to worry about lodgings.

Over the next few months I need to figure out what I want to do at the con, and in particular what I want to run.

Maid RPG is definitely, absolutely on the list. A friend of mine has been showing my partially translated version to some of his other friends and co-workers, and I keep being blown away by just how much people not only accept the concept, but fall in love with it. At this rate I’m going to have to start looking into how I might be able to license and publish it for real…

Other possibilities include:

  • Mascot-tan (which, bizarrely, seems to have something of a cult following)
  • My Fudge-based Halo RPG. (Still need to actually try it out with my friends)
  • My Magic Shop Risus one-shot (“Slayers meets Are You Being Served?“)