Monday, September 24, 2012

RPG Review Recess - Marvel RPG Civil War

Now, I will tell you something you already know. The set up for how the Marvel RPG books are done is amazing and is backwards to so much of the advice that I have gotten over the years.

That advice? Adventures don't sell. Write them, but give them away for free because no one buys an adventure.

Well, Margaret Weis Productions is set up to completely and utterly destroy that concept with their Marvel Civil War. Inside you'll find an adventure that will take you months to complete, seriously it will take you a couple of months to complete and what a set of wonderful months it will be. If you haven't read the comics, or at least checked out the timeline on wikipedia or something, then let me explain briefly what this is. Civil War is the arc of stories that deals with the Marvel Universe's Extension of the We're Scared of Mutants Act (Paraphrasing) to the We're Scared of Superheroes Act. It breaks down into anyone with any weird powers, no matter how they got them, needs to register with the government so they know where they are at all times. This causes a schism to occur between super heroes and a fight breaks out between the pro and anti-We're Scared of Supers Act. I'm not really going to talk about that more, if you want more go look it up. It's not like this knowledge isn't readily available.

What I'm going to talk about is the book, which comes in two flavours. The super flavour which comes with all the rules so you don't need to have picked up the basic rules in order to buy this game. Of course, for those of us who did you can pick up just Civil War as well. This is great on so many levels because it provides people with options. I know I was grateful for it when I picked up the base game that they were going to let me not buy the base game every time I bought a copy of the book. It's great, and while it's awesome it isn't the design for every game I have to repeat that it's absolutely perfect for this game.

The content of the book is amazing as well.  It gives you the feel of Civil War without actually having to play Civil War exactly as it is in the books. I will admit I was uncertain how they were going to do that when dealing with iconic moments in the book without them being those moments in the book. The answer to that is by giving you the outline of the moments and giving you tips on how to use them to fit how you've decided to take the characters you've chosen to play rather than the characters that were in the setting. Instead of Spiderman revealing himself as Peter Parker, you get Ms. Marvel revealing herself to the world as Sharon Ventura. Why? Because you have a player playing Ms. Marvel who thinks this would be a great thing to do, and the rest of the players think it would be awesome to try to talk her out of it, or stop it from happening because they don't want her to go over to the other side.

There are pages, and pages, and pages, and pages of this kind of material and how you can set it up for your game. Pick the pieces you think are interesting, do what you want and make the story change for you. Here's what can happen, and here are the characters as they are in Civil War. I read the book, and couldn't wait to see how things were turned and twisted depending on the situation.

It's just brilliant. You should get it, now. Even if you don't play it, as something to check out a great design.

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