Monday, June 20, 2011

How to run Nicotine Girls

If Dungeons and Dragons is the Jerry Bruckheimer version of roleplaying games, Nicotine Girls is the indie movie version, co-directed by Todd Haynes and Christine Jeffs.

Nicotine Girls is a game written by Paul Czege, and it's about teenage girls with minimum-wage jobs who are looking for happiness. Keeping with the film analogy, the archetypal game of Nicotine Girls would be like Ghost World. The most extreme version I can think of would be Winter's Bone. You can find the rules here: (they're like 1.5 pages long)

A couple of months ago I wrote some play advice for this game, which you can find here:

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Hollywood's Secret Superhero universe

This thread on Story Games(*) reminds me that, for the three years, I feel like Hollywood has secretly been building a rival superhero universe to compete with Marvel and DC.


PUSH has got the psychic abilities covered.

JUMPER gives us teleporters.

NEXT was actually a pretty cool film about a precognitive superhero (albeit a film whose script has an extremely weird ending - it resolves the hero's emotional and psychological dilemma, but leaves the external threat superficially unresolved. It's weird. Weird.)

LIMITLESS sets up a cool backdrop to the world where super-intelligent masterminds affect everything, acting in their own, not necessarily altruistic, interests.

... and maybe HANCOCK, which I enjoyed and gives us two *super* superheroes.

They're all movies that are kinda flawed, but also filled with really interesting ideas. I may have my next sequence of films to watch lined up.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Developing a game. Ward X: a supernatural drama about forensic medicine

It's a world where supernatural medical conditions like vampirism and zombification are common-place ...

... but the elite medical team on Ward X aren’t interested in anything like that. An outbreak of lycanthropy is like the common cold to them: obvious to diagnose, easy to treat, and therefore boring.

Ward X only gets involved with the really unusual and difficult-to-diagnose supernatural afflictions: rogue curses, spectral parasites, exotic monsterism and the like.

Can you solve the case?