I like the idea of a supers game, though I don’t think I (or most of the players I’ve had) have read enough comics to fully get into the supers-game mindset. And despite my extensive gaming library I only own four supers RPGs: ICONS, the Cortex Marvel Heroic Roleplaying, Silver Age Sentinels (plus The Authority), and a huge chunk of the Aberrant line. I did run an ICONS game a few years ago where the characters were part of a Suicide Squad task force, and the fun level was pretty amazing.
Supers as a whole have always been a solid niche in the hobby—Champions was (I think) the first back in 1981, or at least the first influential supers game; then in 1984-85 you could pick up officially licensed DC and Marvel roleplaying games and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. And it’s been a niche that’s grown steadily over the years, with more games filling that hole, and
2014 is starting to look like a pretty good year for supers to me, or at least to the games that have my interest. Not only do we have Venture City Stories for Fate Core, and a revised and expanded edition of ICONS coming this summer, there are a number of supers Kickstarters running now that have attracted my attention. (Yes, I am a backer. My wallet screams.)
For a long, long time people said that Fate just couldn’t handle supers. Never mind that the first Fate game, Spirit of the Century, was about pulp heroes and literally one step removed from supers, or that ICONS draws heavily from Fate. Now that we’re in the Fate Core era, it looks like we’re in the right spot to go after the elusive supers toolkit, and the Daring Comics Roleplaying Game aims to be the Fate Core supers toolkit. From their example rules, it looks like it will fit that bill.
It’s aiming at 180 pages (for an 8.5″x11″ hardcover, more pages if they go for a 6″x9″), and so will include a lot of good stuff: not just a huge selection of stunts and powers, but also an overview of the Daring Comics setting, complete with heroes, villains, and archetypes. The creators have set up their own world for the game that covers the full spectrum of supers, from gritty street-level all the way up to cosmic powers like Galactus. That’s a wide range to draw from, though the designers have systems in place so you can run your cosmic-level hero with my street-level dude without falling too far behind.
Check out their Dev Blog, which has a lot of insight on the game’s design philosophy and goes over some of the rules they’re using, so you can see how the project is shaping up for yourself. Or, if you’d rather have it all in one place, take a look at their preview document, which collects all the info from the dev journals in one place.
I’m really digging the vibes I’m getting—it reminds me of the ’80s Marvel and DC games—and the rules I’ve seen have been very tight and dynamic, while increasing the crunch by a step or two compared to stock Fate Core. Suffice to say I’m a bit disappointed that the fund goal has loomed just out of reach for so long, given that its stretch goals sound so awesome. Though with over a week to go I have no doubts the main book will succeed.
If you’re a Fate Core fan who likes supers, definitely look into this project; one can never have enough awesome Fate books.
[Updated 13 April 2014 @ 4:11pm EST]: Actually, you can disregard the whole damn post since the Kickstarter was cancelled a few hours ago.