Your Favorite Weird Game- Time To Talk About the Weirdest RPGs You Know!


I haven't seen Ray Winninger's Underground mentioned. It was definitely supposed to be a criticism of the Vietnam War and American consumerism and violence...but here's what I loved, they had actual rules for social change, complete with tradeoffs--raise education and wealth might go down (though if you spent enough points you could get around them.) I don't remember what happened to Winninger, I think he wound up running (googles)...D&D. Damn.
Underground was an extremely interesting game to be sure. It was definitely cyberpunk influenced with a 15 minutes into the future setting with genetically engineered super powers standing in for the cybernetic enhancements. The art style reminded me of Liquid Television off of old MTV meets independent comics. The social and political satire taking on rampant consumerism was all very appealing to me. And the social change elements you brought up really are unique as far as games I can think of. Would be worth pulling out my copy to look them over for consideration porting into other games that could benefit from that kind of thing.

log in or register to remove this ad


Nephilim comes to mind. A game steeped in Hermeticism, Gnosticism, and Theosophy where you play an immortal semidivine being that has reincarnated multiple times over the course of history, and where character creation includes randomly determining your past lives.
This was too weird for me. We played it for one session, and never went back.

Toon is kind of a weird RPG. "Wait, we're going to create cartoon characters? Like Warner Brothers style animated characters from the 1930s and 40s?"
I grew up so steeped in cartoons and it's never occured to me to think Toon was weird. :p I once played a large talking rock. Rocky Balboulder

No-one mentioned my personal favorite Weird. Tales from the Floating Vagabond. The owner of a bar installs an inter-dimensional portal on his door, keyed at random to any door anywhere, which randomly brings people to his bar instead of where they intended to go. You play one of the randos who ends up in his bar. Complete with kewl powers like the Flynn Effect, where you reach out and grab something to swing off of no matter where you are, regardless of the previous existence of things to swing off of.

aramis erak

No-one mentioned my personal favorite Weird. Tales from the Floating Vagabond.
I've run it... in the mid 80's... the adventures are far more fun to read than to run, IMO.
Mechanics are 2dX, X by difficulty, running from d4's up through 2d100.... Not the normal fare, but not mechanically all that weird.
Setting? easily as gonzo as Troika. I cannot recall how weird some RPGs are until mentioned by others to trigger recall.

Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Weird is in the eyes of the beholder (hey - great!) for sure

Dialect is now my go-to con game

Ten candles was so good - one of my best con games I played in ever, hands down.

Here are some suggestions:

Morton's List comes to mind, the current version is watered down, but the original one you could get to the darkest areas of the game and it would encourage you to do
commit crimes, both property and potentially physical, as well as acts of self-harm
. Is it an RPG? A Larp? A Cult? Something else? Who knows, but it's definitely weird

LowLife a Savage Worlds post-apocalyptic game where you could play an earthworm or cockroach or sentient twinkie

Continuum, an intriguing time-travel game with a really interesting setting that explains why even with time travel, we don't meet time travellers today in our real world. Also, the creators seem weird since they have decided instead of selling a nice accessible pdf of the game, they instead trickle out their remaining hard copies at $200 a pop via Amazon (link to their store for lulz). One of my few regrets that I sold this (the other is selling all my vinyl records for $10 at a garage sale in 2006)

The World Tree - I owned this game too, and don't regret selling it. I thought the setting of a world tree with talking animals was going to be my peanut butter and chocolate, but it was more like my tuna fish and Spindrift. The rules were boring, the setting was meh. I think I would have liked it better if it was PbtA, but then I would have had to wait 10 years so...

Finally, a game I thought was an excellent premise, but I never owned, read, nor played are the "End of the World" games from Fantasy Flight. You play yourselves sitting around a table, and then all of a sudden the world starts to end - Ragnarok, Zombie Hordes, Alien Invasion, Robots run amok. I listened to an AP that made them sound very fun. However, you also had to buy a separate hardcover book for each, which seemed dumb, as how much rules would you need to actually do this? I'd probably run this as a Lasers & Feelings hack one-shot tbh. Also I think these books may be out of print and carry a slight premium

Continuum was pretty strange. It was a time-travel game, which is a weird start. It managed the problems of paradox and changing the past by requiring the players to keep extensive records of what they'd done (and had not done, in effect). From memory, accumulated paradoxes, called "frag" made it harder to do things, unless you went very far and became a "Narcissist" at which point you were an enemy of all other time travellers (known as "spanners") but you didn't have to keep records any more. Character advancement involved acquiring all sorts of psi powers that weren't directly to do with time travel. I never figured out how to run it well enough to try.


I don’t know if it qualifies as weird in todays rpg industry, but Everway seemed pretty weird at the time.

Given that it's key mechanic is to draw a card and interpret the image in respect to the action...

I never thought Everway was weird. I still don't think the setting is terribly unusual. But the mechanics... I can see it. The author was trying something, a game where trust in the GM was a vital part of resolution. The mechanics as written explicitly require the GM to make a lot of decisions. Decisions I think a lot of GMs make, but in Everway, these choices were baked into the rules of play.

Cards were NOT the key mechanic in task resolution. A lot has been said of them in other threads, and I love the concept... but really the cards were written to be the backup mechanic. Task resolution relied first on whether the GM thought you reasonably could succeed at a task, then whether or not you should succeed by the beats of the unfolding story. If neither of those suggested a clear outcome, then the cards would come into play. A card drawn from the fortune deck would be interpreted by the GM. This could be as simple as good/bad, but the GM was encouraged to apply the cards' meanings, elemental influences, astrological influences, and other things, all to decide whether or not you sweet-talk that guard...

I played Everway for years, and still love it. But... yeah. The mechanics could be pretty weird. :)

Remove ads