[generic] RPG a day lockdown #68 - what makes post-apocalypse special?

#3
Post-apocalypse is one of my favourite genres. I like the post-apocalyptic aesthetic, there is something awe-inspiring about the fall of civilisation, as captured so well in the final shot of the original Planet of the Apes when Charlton Heston discovers the partly submerged Statue of Liberty.

What makes the genre strong for gaming is the mix of anarchy with modernity. You have enough breakdown of law and order to give the characters a lot of agency and opportunities to make a difference. But at the same time you can still deal with modern mindsets. You character can still quote Marx (Karl or Groucho) and understand the world in the way we understand it.

I prefer the more gonzo kind filled with mutant power and giant robots to more gritty, serious treatments. I also prefer to focus on rebuilding civilisation then day to day survival. Also find merging post-apocalypse with the Western is very effective. The fictional old west can do for post-apocalypse what fictional medieval can do for fantasy - provide a common set of assumption and trappings that cover much of the non-adventuring context.
 
#5
I prefer the more gonzo kind filled with mutant power and giant robots to more gritty, serious treatments. I also prefer to focus on rebuilding civilisation then day to day survival. Also find merging post-apocalypse with the Western is very effective. The fictional old west can do for post-apocalypse what fictional medieval can do for fantasy - provide a common set of assumption and trappings that cover much of the non-adventuring context.
And this guy knows what he's talking about. Bounty Hunters of the Atomic Wasteland remains a classic - and one of the very few games other than my own that I bang on about. If you haven't at least read it, you should. It isn't quite Monty Python makes Mad Max but that's a good starting description.

And it's free.
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#6
In my formative years it was common knowledge that civilisation was going to...
  1. Be destroyed in a nuclear war
  2. Be destroyed when the oil ran out
  3. Be destroyed when the ice age came back
  4. Be destroyed by something else (choose from: bio-weapons causing a pandemic, the rise of the machines, reversal of Earth's magnetic field, putting fluoride in toothpaste, walking on the cracks in the pavement, etc etc)
  5. Some combination of the above.
I loved reading and watching stuff about this, from the grimly realistic like Threads, to the nice middle class version of grimly realistic such as Survivors. From the YA adventure of The Chyrsalids to the generational saga of Earth Abides, via the action adventure of Damnation Alley or Mad Max 2, and over to the gonzo weirdness of the Burger Wars in Judge Dredd's trek across the Cursed Earth.

So the ability to play an RPG in a setting like the above is just awesome. Especially if there is an element of rebuilding civilisation.

Plus mutants! Psionic powers! Guns!
 
#8
There's two things:

Minor: resource management formed part of #TTRPGS from the beginning. Rolling your first D&D character and then spending your 30-180 Gold Pieces or armour and weapons. We'd never been offered so much choice in a game before.

And then keeping track of all your items in your character sheet. "Dull Onyx Box". Great!

It's falling out of favour and people realise you can trim all the book-keeping out of the games and fudge things, just like they do in films and books.

But there's still fun to be had in resource management and fighting for each meal, each litre of guzzolene, each shotgun shell.


MAJOR: Through a glass darkly. It's like the world is now but damaged and twisted. Things are familiar but different. Which makes the settings great to explore various themes or lessons. Or - for UK tastes - SATIRE. Bless you Judge Dredd! We love our satire!
 
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