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TSR TSR5! A modest proposal. Paizo (or Modiphius or Free League) buys TSR, for a true rebirth

I could see Free League making an offer for Star Frontiers if they thought there was an audience. Kickstarter limits the risk somewhat, and they've already revived Twilight 2000.
It seems unlikely. Free League are Swedes, and Star Frontiers were never a big thing over here. I've never heard any Swedish gamers express any nostalgia over Star Frontiers. Now, if we were talking Traveller, that'd be a different thing.

Plus, Free League already have a space RPG in Coriolis, and it doesn't seem like a good idea to compete with themselves that way.
 

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It seems unlikely. Free League are Swedes, and Star Frontiers were never a big thing over here. I've never heard any Swedish gamers express any nostalgia over Star Frontiers. Now, if we were talking Traveller, that'd be a different thing.

Plus, Free League already have a space RPG in Coriolis, and it doesn't seem like a good idea to compete with themselves that way.
I'm sure it is. That "If" was intended to do a lot of work.
 

Keefe the Thief

Adventurer
Most TSR games were good because they were connected with the pop culture of the time.

Boot Hill. Star Frontiers. Top Secret. These ooze a certain style, inspired by movies, novels and other stories.

That pop culture is gone. Why should we reenact the games that were inspired by it? How about creating something new?

But, of course, for that we do not need the TSR name.
 

Li Shenron

Legend
Meh... I wouldn't mind if they do, but frankly all this recent mess about multiple TSRs is because too many people are too attached to the past, and when they hear TSR they go hype for nothing. No wrong with a bit of nostalgia in a hobby, but we have to understand that nothing new will bring the old back. It's a lost cause, pretty much like real-life reactionary movements to bring back a country's presumed past greatness by rolling back to old flags and titles.


What we really miss is ourselves when we were young (and the lost dear ones, but that's another matter). So instead of trying to bring back names and logos, let's remember that we're lucky that those books of the past are still with us if we want to. We don't need to re-do what's already done, it is still here, and even though the physical books may crumble, what is written on them does not. We can't go back in time but we can still play an old adventure with the old rules anytime!
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Well, I skipped the part where PF3 (or 2d20 2E, or Year Zero 2E) follows the trends of 2030-era "back to basics" TPRGs, and is designed to be a super simple game (no more complex than The Black Hack or MAZES), but which can modularly scale in complexity up to an "advanced" version

So, you skipped the part where the magical unicorn appears? That's kind of an important step.

(It can be done.

Assertion that it can be done, and proof that it can be done and be appealing to a large population of gamers are not the same.
 

Most TSR games were good because they were connected with the pop culture of the time.

Boot Hill. Star Frontiers. Top Secret. These ooze a certain style, inspired by movies, novels and other stories.

That pop culture is gone. Why should we reenact the games that were inspired by it? How about creating something new?

But, of course, for that we do not need the TSR name.
So, you are saying westerns, space opera and spyfi are dead? Because I have a Mandalorian and a Black Widow here who beg to differ.
 



Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member

Dune doesn't sit well in either the Western or Spy-fi genres, to my way of thinking. You want to call it Space Opera, fine. But, I gave pushback on Mandalorian as a Western, as it is more that than a Space Opera. Space Opera is happy as a clam as a genre. Westerns are passe.

Though, I dunno if a yet-to-be-released version of unproven quality, after previous efforts that sucked, should be raised as "living genre".

Mission Impossible...

Seems less like an example of a living genre as it is a vehicle for a particular actor. By this logic, the existence of Grand Theft Auto games and Fast & Furious movies should support a car-centered RPG.

Living genre needs a whole stack of different examples to support it, not a couple centered on very specific franchises.
 

Seems less like an example of a living genre as it is a vehicle for a particular actor. By this logic, the existence of Grand Theft Auto games and Fast & Furious movies should support a car-centered RPG.
Fast & Furious has a significant overlap with spyfi - see Hobbs and Shaw. And yes, I would say there is room for a D20 Modern F&F style RPG, full of gadgets, car chases, rocky adventurers and dastardly villains.
 



doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Dune doesn't sit well in either the Western or Spy-fi genres, to my way of thinking. You want to call it Space Opera, fine. But, I gave pushback on Mandalorian as a Western, as it is more that than a Space Opera. Space Opera is happy as a clam as a genre. Westerns are passe.
😂 Wow. Westerns are fine, regardless of your personal preference.
Seems less like an example of a living genre as it is a vehicle for a particular actor. By this logic, the existence of Grand Theft Auto games and Fast & Furious movies should support a car-centered RPG.
They’re hardly the only examples of criminal action car chase stories. That genre absolutely could support an RPG.

Anyway, Mission Impossible is also far from alone in its genre. Kingsman, Bond, occasional random knockoffs, etc. Spy action thrillers are…not a small genre.

Oh, and Mandolorian is like…objectively a western. Like I cannot fathom how one could come to any other conclusion from watching it.
 
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doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
So, you are saying westerns, space opera and spyfi are dead? Because I have a Mandalorian and a Black Widow here who beg to differ.
Yeah like…spyfi is pretty resilient as a genre, and for Westerns we need only look at the IMBD page for Timothy Olyphant to see that westerns are very much still a living genre.

As for space opera, well, I really doubt we need to question its status as a living genre.
 

What movies/franchises are in what genres really doesn't matter does it? I think the point is that those genres exist. I would argue they are no less popular or known than when Top Secret, Star Frontiers, Boothill were originally created/distributed ('80s). And as such, I think they could support RPGs now just as well as they did then (which was notably mediocre).
 


doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
This isnt' about personal preference. This is about presence in current media.

I agree. My point is that there aren't many other Westerns in the media right now.
Define “right now”, because in terms of pop culture presence, I’d define it as “within the last 10 or so years”, in which case we have Westworld, Justified, that one about a train town, and least one other one IIRC that Timothy Olyphant was in, on top of the Mandolorian. That’s just popular shows.
 

Yeah like…spyfi is pretty resilient as a genre, and for Westerns we need only look at the IMBD page for Timothy Olyphant to see that westerns are very much still a living genre.

As for space opera, well, I really doubt we need to question its status as a living genre.
I remember Top Secret from the 1980s. It's problem wasn't it's genre, which is as popular as ever, it's problem was it's rules where not very good.

Boot Hill was never really suited to role playing. It was a passable tabletop gunfight simulator. I don't know that they ever published any adventures for it. It's main issue was a very high character mortality rate, which made it pretty much impossible to run an ongoing campaign when the main characters keep dying. It was always limited by the technology of the setting, and a lack of monsters/aliens. Of course the Western genre was already dated back in the 1970s. It relied on nostalgia, and in that sense it is timeless.

Space Opera's problem is Star Wars is approaching a virtual monopoly. Still, there is Star Trek: Discovery. In theory, Star Frontiers also incorporates Planetary Romance, hence Dune.
 
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Dungeonosophy

Adventurer
So, you skipped the part where the magical unicorn appears? That's kind of an important step.
It's true, I did skip the Magical Unicorn! Thanks for the reminder. :-D

I'm quite close friends with the Magical Unicorn. For example, back in 2015, I wrote a 'fake news'* post about WotC opening up their Setting IP for commercial fan publications. I suggested that WotC open up one Setting at time. *('Fake' but earnest.)

The post is archived here:

I was almost universally mocked by the ENWorld Community. With words such as "Magical Unicorn", "Pony Wishing," and "IMPOSSIBLE!"
And my thread was locked.

...And, soon after, DMs Guild was announced.

Assertion that it [designing a game scales in complexity, and which allows different players to be playing with different complexity levels (e.g. Diceless vs. Polyhedral) at the same table] can be done, and proof that it can be done and be appealing to a large population of gamers are not the same.

Well, ya gotta start somewhere. Desiring that there were such a thing. Imagining how it could be done. Then designing such a game myself. (No one can offer 'proof' of mass appeal beforehand. This is a discussion forum, not a board meeting.)

I mean, basically WotC's Monster Slayers (kids d20 game), 5E Basic Rules, and 5E Advanced Rules are the same game, with different fiddly bits. Just need an customary interface for allowing one player to be playing Monster Slayers, while another plays Basic, and another Advanced, within the same story, at the same table. Adding a Diceless mode is just one step simpler than Monster Slayers.

P.S. Recent WotC product announcements point to a new kind of product. And Mike Mearls himself has passionately railed against the math-heavy status quo of D&D.
 
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