This week, I want to talk about just one game: Twilight: 2000.
Normally I don’t talk about RPGs much as I haven’t played in years. I still read them though, and back in the day I used to play and run a lot, and write about them occasionally too. Post-apocalyptic games were one of the genres I enjoyed, and I played all sorts; from the silliness of Gamma World or Paranoia, through Morrow Project to Aftermath, and, of course, Twilight 2000. That was back in the day when the year 2000 was the bright future rather than the vaguely remembered past. Dear me, I’m old.
What’s interesting is that while the rest have largely blurred together as various shades of normal people in exceptional circumstances, the Twilight 2000 games always stood out as something a bit different. In this, everyone was a trained soldier. Sure, you might be an engineer or a pilot, but you were still combat trained and familiar with the basics. And you had guns. Lots of guns.
Anyway, I hadn’t paid much mind to the game since the 80s, so it was a pleasant surprise to see it on Kickstarter. What’s especially interesting is watching my own reaction, because I’m thinking “Oooo, I could play that. That would be fun…” Then some rationality kicks in and I think “Nah, never going to happen. Where would I get the groups together, and… oh. Solo rules. Now that is interesting.”
So, on the one hand I am confronted with the power of nostalgia. It’s a great seller, and we’ve seen quite a few reprints of classics on Kickstarter in the last couple of years, and many of them have done very well. What’s even more impressive is when people can capture some of that nostalgia without being a straight reprint of an ancient relic. That’s really clever. And hard. I’ve tried.
On the other hand, is the idea of solo RPGs. For me, that doesn’t entirely make sense as I was always more about the playing-the-role bit and less about the game. It just seems a bit weird doing that on your own. But if I think about it more as a game than roleplaying, then it’s a really enticing idea; being able to fight once more in the intriguing setting of the WWIII that never was.
Will I back it? Who knows? I’ll certainly take a closer look at the rules and see what they offer about how the solo game might work. I may get a pdf for reading anyway, just to remember the good old days, when nukes rained on Europe and we all had to walk back to France from Poland. In the rain…
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Old school hardcore survivalist military stuff. You don’t see that often these days. And it comes in a box too, very appropriate for a retro inspired game. I’m not surprised it funded in 7 minutes, this is everything I’m talking about: different, realist, well thought out design, quality artwork, aimed at the (wannabe) adult gamer. I’m not going to back it since it’s not my theme or setting, but I *respect* it. Very much.
I’m also not surprised this is coming out of europe, where gaming culture these days seems more vibrant and free than the US. Go to any RPG designer forum and mention you want to publish something like T2K and they’ll roast you alive, but these people are doing it.
They certainly are doing it, and in style. They’ll be north of half a million dollars by the time they finish.
Funny you should mention the US. Over half their backers are American, so the market for this type of thing is certainly still there. That would still be a very respectable total even if you ignored everyone else.
Oh the audience is there all right 🙂 It’s just that it’s often ignored by gaming industry professionals & wannabe’s with blinkers on.