How’s that for an enigmatic blog title? I bet a lot of you are wondering what the hell is in the drinking water around Shortymonster towers. Well fear not, your humble blogger has not gone crazy, he is instead taking the opportunity to share with you a rather wonderful little thing.
For those of you who don’t know, once a year myself and a few hundred gamers get together at a university in the UK to drink. Role playing does occasionally break out, but only during the daylight hours, and mainly to give people a chance to recover before the next evening’s drinking begins. The people who attend this gathering are almost all part of one the various gaming societies that are dotted around this land. I myself am a member of HUGS (Huddersfield University Gaming Society), but what I want to talk about today is the creation the Manchester gaming society known as VAGUE. You see, with an awful lot of people going, a lot of societies make their own t-shirts so that they can be easily recognised from a distance. We do this HUGS, and have yearly polls for silly things to put on the back. Past examples include ‘Real Role Players Use THAC0′, and ‘Please don’t kill me, I’m only worth 50xp’.
VAGUE went one better not so long ago, and each member of their society, which is large by almost everyone’s standards, was wearing an individual shirt with an option from a choose your own adventure printed on the back, along with a number. Not just any game book though, but one they had designed themselves. That first night an awful lot of time was spent trawling the bar looking for the number you had just picked, and the dude in the ’1′ shirt was very popular indeed.
It was a great idea on any number of levels, but mainly as a social tool, as it got people talking and gave a reason for people to introduce themselves. I know it’s a bit cliched, but quite a few gamers are a bit socially awkward in large groups, even when that group is almost entirely as geeky as they are. But VAGUE went a little bit further, and I recently received an email from VAGUE front man, and all round nice guy, Big Bad John telling me that I could now pick up the adventure book for myself through Amazon.
Well, it was such a nifty idea, and because the adventure is actually pretty damned rad, that I just had to share it. So I present to you all: The Hunt for the Evil Overlord. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Full disclosure: I was drunk when I played it, and never managed to survive once. As a side note, even though I know BBJ very well indeed, this recommendation is purely off my own back as I think it is a fantastic idea.