Sunday, September 9, 2007

.45 Adventure hits the table

Well, it has been a really long time since our group had the opportunity to get a pulp game to the table. We all have jobs, wives, kids and other responsiblilities. Summer is always a hard time to get steady gaming on the table.

In August, I got the itch to run a pulp game. Our small group had talked about making this a monthly exercise and it had been 4 months or so since we even played or mentioned a game in the genre. Over the past months, I had started to lose interest in Chaos in Cairo as a system. Although I never really talked about it with the other three players, I had a feeling that they felt the same way. While the system was great for superheroes (Supersystem), I felt the game did not represent pulp the way I wanted it to on the table. A couple of the guys thought about converting LOTR/LOTOW to pulp. Since I did not think that would make for a good conversion, I started hunting for a new rule set. After lots of lurking on various boards, I made the plunge and bought the PDF of .45 Adventure. Once I bought it, it sat on my hard drive for a couple of months until I read it in August. Then it hit me.... I had to try these rules.

The rules themselves seemed rather simple. However, they accomplished something that no other pulp system I had looked at could do. It allowed the person who was running the game to tell a story to his players. Chaos in Cairo did not do this well and I still do not think a LOTR/LOTOW conversion would either. Since the designer does not believe in a points system (boo!), he has developed a number of template characters that anyone can modify to develop characters that fit the story the game master wants to tell. I set out to make some conversions of my Chaos in Cairo figures.

Three of us were able to sit down and give the game a whirl. I created a scenario where the "good guys" were in the North African desert conducting an archeological dig. While the academics were digging, the evils of the desert sought to stop them. Six fast men dressed in black with red turbans flooded over the dunes to stop the paleontologists from digging in the sites. Meanwhile, Professor Mitch Anderson saved the day. After an "unsuccessful" dig where he discovered an enormous live scorpion, he was able to jump into the company truck and save his companions by driving them back to the city.

Overall, I think the game was a success. I know how I will tweak the characters for our next session, but for a first run, I will call it a hit. By the second turn, we knew most of the rules (although we did choose to neglect guts checks for anyone who takes a wound - we will add these next time). The game offers a nice mix of simple rules and a more detailed character creation/development system. For now, I think we have a set of rules our group is going to work with.