The minotaur in the high castle

Felix

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While rpg.net has a long and proud history of writing about Mazes and Minotaurs, the first RPG ever, I feel the next couple of generations of games are not discussed nearly enough.

I know that the first one was Caverns and Chimeras, which was created because Ken St. Andre didn't understand the weird rules. But while plenty of people loved the fact it used only easily found D6s, and had a simple three-class system (Soldier, Oracle or the hybrid Sailor), I always found it a bit simplistic.

And others like Avalon Hill's Rune Quest, though I always felt that it was clear how little it was trying to emulate Norse mythology. Everything was Greek myths with a Norse name. And besides, I couldn't take a game where you can play a sentient puffin seriously. Though the D100 system was pretty neat.

My favorite was Iron Age Enterprise's Mythic Greece. I was hooked from the moment I saw the cover. I know that a lot of people dismiss it as "Mythic Charts" but I loved the hell out of those charts. I remember once when our GM sicced Charybdis on our part as we were sailing from Crete to Athens. We were only 6th level and should have died. But my pirate managed to roll open ended high on the Ramming Table (Ludicrous Difficulty) and got to inflict a C Collision Critical on the monster. I rolled a 66! My group couldn't stop talking about it for weeks. My friends still use the term "flying sushi" as an in-joke.

I really liked IAE in general, and was delighted when they got the rights for the Clash of the Titans RPG. I know a lot of people nowadays say that was a bad iteration which was totally unfaithful to the claymation spirit of the movie and just Mythic Greece Light, but I saw those people have never rolled on the Mechanical Owl Creation table.

Finally, I think we should acknowledge Greg Stafford's amazing The Great Iliad campaign, where you trace the story of your characters from the beginnings of the Trojan War all the way to the founding of Rome. Nobody else has ever captured the spirit of Homer (and, for the last third, Virgil) nearly as well.

Honestly, sometimes when I look at how little discussion there is of these games I feel I'm in some sort of alternate universe or something.
 

Felix

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My group shouted that too! Good times.

BTW, thanks for your work with Mazes and Minotaurs . Pity more of the classics aren't online, though I understand the licensing rights are hard to sort out or something.
 
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