[TRO Challenge] Behold my Boundlessly Clever Game-Fu technique!! [Game Fu #8]


Mad Ringmaster
Validated User
It occurs to me that it'll probably interact with my "RPG a Week" thing I'm planning on. Writing one as we speak, actually. Should be done this Thursday.


President of Umerica
RPGnet Member
Validated User
So, is anyone interested in helping judge this time? I'd like to have at least one definite volunteer before the competition begins.


President of Umerica
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Due to a change in my schedule, the competition will begin Friday at 12Noon CST instead of 4pm. I'm sure the extra four hours will be a great detriment to all of your entries. :D


President of Umerica
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Validated User
Well crap. Have you every had one of those days where someone could not make up their mind about something that greatly effected your schedule? :mad:

Anyways, It looks like the competition is back to starting at 4pm CST. Sorry for the back and forth schedule changes.


President of Umerica
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Game Fu #8 Competition
The goal of this competition is to create a fun and functional role-playing game in about two weeks. This competition will run between March. 5th, 4pm CST, to March. 21st, 11:59pm CST.

All entries must be emailed by March 21st, 11:59pm CST to reidzilla@gmail.com in one of the following formats: TXT, RTF, DOC, DOCX, or PDF. Feel free to post them to the competition thread as well so everyone can see your efforts.

Each entry into the competition must utilize at least 5 ingredients and must have at least one System Constraint, one Genre Blend, and one MacGuffin. Also, entries must include a title page with the following clearly stated: Title, Author's name, RPG.net screen name, and Ingredients used.


System Constraints
  • A "roll-and-keep" dice pool where the dice that aren't "kept" still have mechanical significance.
  • A mechanism whereby there is a gamble to go higher to get a better result with a potential to bust and fail.
  • Character creation does not allow characters to have access to all attributes. They must choose which ones not to have values in.
  • Character Creation is done as a group, involving a round-robin creation system.
  • Character creation is done by answering multiple choice questions.
  • Does not use numbers to represent skills or attributes in any way.
  • Each game has a limited resource that determines when the game ends.
  • Mechanics must use different die types for specific action types. (i.e. d6 for social, d8 for combat, d10 for magic). May be different for each character.
  • Must use an non-traditional character advancement system. No experience point system of any kind.
  • Physical and emotional healing occurs only through alignment/code of conduct based deeds.
  • Resolution by dice pool built around matches, runs, and a targeted number. Build matches (doubles, triples, etc.) to get one type of result, runs (1-2-3 or 2-3-4-5, etc.) to get another type of result, and pull as many of one specific number out of a roll as you can to succeed at a special maneuver.
  • Resolution uses two dice that are added together for the total (2dX). If the roll is successful, one die is then used for degree of success while the other is used for time taken.
  • System must have requirement for players to switch characters mid-game, either a new character or another player's character.
  • system must use colors as a meaningful requirement for character.
  • System of Kharma whereby a character's actions somehow come back to reward or haunt them.
Scoring: You will be judged on how you applied the concept & spirit of each chosen constraint. How inventive are they? How functional are they in play? How fun are they in play?

Genre Blender
You must pick two of the following genres and combine the tropes listed to create your game. Picking additional ingredients from this category means adding an additional genre, and its tropes, to your setting (i.e. two ingredients from this category means three genres combined).
  • Brave New World (Exploration of exotic locals, Mysterious discoveries, Unexplained phenomena)
  • Dark Ages (Collapse of an empire, Anarchy reigns, Decline Of culture and knowledge)
  • Espionage & Intrigue (Nations on the brink of war, Information = power, Words are as deadly as weapons)
  • Fairy Tale (Fantastic magical people/creatures, cunning overcoming brute force, Moral of the story)
  • Modern Occult (Magic is real but veiled from the mundanes, Magic equals power, Power corrupts the unwary)
  • Monstrous PC saga (Cool inhuman powers, "I am not a monster!" Angst, Living in secret from the mundane world)
  • Mythological (Meddling Pantheon Of Deities, Mythical Questing Heroes, Legendary Supernatural Creatures)
  • Pirates (Live free or die trying, Swashbuckling, morality is in the eye of the beholder)
  • Pulp Adventure (Heroes & villains are larger than life, Characters are danger magnets, Good vs. Evil with no gray areas)
  • Punk (Dystopian society, Body modification/implants, lack of moral center)
  • Space Opera (Grand cosmic scale, Individuals against an empire, Common fantastic technology)
  • Steam Fantasy (Implausible alternative technology, Society revolves around innovation, Order vs. Chaos)
  • Survival Horror (Civilization has fallen, They are coming to get you, Think fast or die faster)
  • Vehicle Action (Fantastic vehicles capable of implausible feats, Reputation means everything, To the victor goes the spoils)
  • Western (Harsh life on the lawless frontier, Shoot or give up the gun, A man lives or dies by his word)
Scoring: You will be judged on whether you included all of the selected genres/tropes and how well you made them mesh together into a cohesive, enjoyable game. Originality will also be a factor as some combinations have been used, and abused, many times.

Driving Force, A.K.A the MacGuffin!
There are many well written games with rich settings that have a universal problem: "OK, so what do characters do in this game?" Not so for this competition! This ingredient requires that your game have a clearly defined MacGuffin for your game. This is a motivating plot element that is used to drive the game's story and will heavily influence the world setting. Think of it as a spicy seasoning used to flavor your Genre Blend ingredients. The basic definition of a MacGuffin (at least for this competition) is a single statement that provides characters with a clear, overarching goal.

Here are several MacGuffin examples, feel free come up with your own.
  • Deciphering an ancient, apocalyptic prophecy.
  • Discovering the lost magics of the long dead sorcerer kings.
  • Getting the pie away from the ork.
  • Healing the land before all is lost.
  • Hunting the last of the dragons.
  • Scour the lands for the 1001 shards of the Holy Crystal.
  • Searching for the lost god.
  • Seeking a way back home.
  • The quest for the Holy Grail.
  • Trying to reunite the eight lost artifacts of the realms.
Scoring: You will be judged on how clearly and cleverly the MacGuffin is depicted. How well does it mesh with the other ingredients you have chosen? Does it make the game more interesting?

You are not required to use an ingredient from this category.
  • Characters must be simple enough that all of the necessary information (a.k.a. the character sheet) will fit easily on one or both sides of an index card. Minimum text size: 12 pts., and ease of use will be heavily critiqued.
  • Characters' skills and abilities are recorded using a Crossword Puzzle style grid.
  • Game must focus on short term play only (1-3 sessions). It must not allow long term play.
  • Game requires the use of pieces from a traditional board game, other than dice.
  • Random Game Construction! - If you choose this ingredient, you MUST declare so by Sunday, March 7th. Then the head judge will publicly assign you two Randomly generated System Constraints & one Randomly Generated Genre Blend. You then must add a MacGuffin of your choice. You may not add any additional ingredients.
  • The entire game, sans title page, must be exactly 8 pages long, no more or less (4 sheets of letter sized paper, minimum font size of 10pts). The use of this ingredient will be heavily critiqued as to whether it complements the game's overall design.

Let it begin!!
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President of Umerica
RPGnet Member
Validated User
So how am I going to judge? Here are my loose guidelines:

Ingredient use: (up to 25 points) Were at least 5 ingredients used? Are they prominent and inventively implemented? Were too many extra ingredients added, ruining the soup?

Playability: (up to 25 points) How functional it the game? Do the mechanics seem sound?

Comprehensibility: (up to 25 points) is the game complete? Do I have everything I need to play and GM?

Fun: (up to 25 points) Does this game look like a bunch fun to play?

Possible Extra Credit: Professional style layout, TOCs and Indexes, Art that fits the game's theme well (please respect copyrights).
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