Sunday, August 27, 2017

#RPGaDay 2017: Day 30

30th) What is an RPG genre-mashup you would most like to see?

I've thought long and hard about this, and finally decided that the mash-up that I would most like to see is one that I helped write back in 1998. As I mentioned in my "LARPs in Limbo" column last fall, I would like to polish up Miskatonic Regional Elementary School for a second run someday. To give you an idea of how many genres get mashed into that one little game--and to push myself to do some some more work on it--here's the player handout (or "bluesheet") about the game's premise:


Bluesheet: The Big School District Merger

The past year has been a turbulent time for the Miskatonic River Valley school district. Due to the prolonged recession, state and federal funding has dried up and nearly every school in the district faced closing unless they merged.

Before now, the district was home to four elementary schools:

Miskatonic Elementary has served the children, spawn, and other assorted offspring of the families, spore beds, and parthenogenic amorphous masses of historic, haunted Arkham for over a century. The school is large, both in student body and in architecture--it has to be, in order for some of the more, um, exotic students to even make it through the doors. Now renamed Miskatonic Regional Elementary School, it has become host to other very specialized schools that were closed in the merger.

Anime Elementary was the school of choice for the local mecha operators, space fighter pilots, alien sex demons, cute tiny auto mechanics, and weapons dealers in the high-tech townships north of Arkham. Many of these families had more-or-less mobile residences, so when the school was shut down, most of the students simply transferred outside the district. A few families decided to keep their kids in the same school district, so those ended up at Miskatonic.

W.D. Memorial was located in Filmland, to the east. Few parents here were willing to move away from their show-business careers. Some were affluent enough to afford private schooling, but most just enrolled their kids in the nearest possible school. Miskatonic gained many talented and fascinating students as a result.

The Atlantean Private School for Boys was located offshore a few dozen miles south of Arkham. Wealthy superheroes sent their sons here to be properly trained in the use and control of their powers. Unfortunately for the school, some supervillains also sent their children there. An ill-considered comment on a report card last spring kindled the fires of rage, so to speak, in the heart of one of the more volatile parents. Luckily, all of the students were away on a field trip that day. They returned home to find not the welcoming domes of the underwater school, but the cooling lava of a new mountain range. Although no villain has publicly claimed responsibility, the modus operandi has narrowed the search to one particular suspect. Dr. Volcano, however, is in hiding and refuses to comment on the disaster.

The first couple months of this school year were rather challenging, as both the returning Miskatonic students and the newcomers adjusted to sharing a common school. The principal, Mr. Black, has dealt promptly and efficiently with fights, accidents, and other disturbances, which has greatly reassured the parents of new students who might have had any qualms about Arkham's sinister reputation. (Most potential troublemakers, on the other hand, live in terror of the harsh and seemingly omniscient Mr. Black.)

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