They say there's no such thing as "bad" publicity. So this post should be a batch of goodness for Wizards of the Coast.
I was down at Gary's today, shooting the breeze and browsing for copies of SpellJammer or the 2nd Edition PHB (for info on arquebuses and smoke powder, dont'cha know?), when Tim said, "hey...here's something for you to blog about!" And handed me a big steaming pile of Gamma World "Roleplaying Game."
[quotation marks added by Yours Truly]
Folks that love-love-love 4th edition are probably really going to get their rocks off on this stinker, but for me it once again filled me with a mixture of loathing and sheer "what the f...?" $40 (plus tax, of course) buys you a 160 page rule, the requisite board game parts (maps and tokens, 'cause that's what an "RPG" is, right?), a couple decks of cards, as well as a "booster" pack.
"Booster pack?" Yeah...you know like Collectible Card Games? Because GW4 (as I'm going to call this shit-pile) is ALSO a CCG. In addition to the Box, you have to buy booster packs...little 8 card packs of random mutations and technological wonders. "Collect all 120!" says the booster pack box. I suppose making players collect random cards is better than making folks buy "splat books"...since knuckle-draggers that play this game can't read.
But, hey, anyone notice what's NOT in the $40 box (I mean, BESIDES a complete rule set or something)...DICE. Dice needed, but not included...says so right on the back of the box! But don't worry. "Do you need dice?" the box asks. Check out the WotC web site to see how you can get a set!
Fuck you, Wizards of the Coast.
Also advertised on the back of the box are the upcoming "expansion packs:" Famine in Fargo and Legions of Gold. No more adventure modules, just "expansion packs." Just recycled from adventure modules. But that's okay, since adventures don't really seem to be part of the equation. This is a game about fighting monsters...mutants or robots or whatever...not about exploration or re-building a civilization on the ashes of the old. And assuming it has the same kind of 4E "healing surges," probably not much of a grim struggle for survival, either.
But GW4 doesn't seem to be a post-apocalyptic game anyway. Instead, it's a cool-action, genre-colored, ass-kicking board came with a CCG gimmick. And just in time for Christmas, kiddies!
Who the hell is this supposed to REALLY appeal to, anyway?
I mean, the Moldvay Basic set was for adults ages 10+. Mentzer's Basic set was for kids ages 10+. I don't remember the age bracket for the original Gamma World, but I know my little brother was playing it (and loving it) around age 10-11. But it was slim enough, and simple enough, that he could pick it up and figure out how to play it (of course, it DID come with dice).
What 10 year old is going to want to pick up and play this monstrosity? Why not just spend $40 on some post-apocalyptic video game like Fall Out 3? That would probably appeal to more kids, ages teen to twenty-five. Probably quicker to pick-up and learn to play, right?
Hey, but what do I know? I'm just a dude with a blog and a chip on my shoulder that the world has changed, I guess. Maybe I'm just hungry...I'm going to go get something to eat.