Smallville: The RPG

Given my recent interest in the Smallville TV series, I was amused to note that there's now an RPG in the same setting. I was surprised, though, when it was hailed as the next best thing since sliced bread on the forums - most TV series tie-in games tend to pretty terrible. However, Smallville's designers - Cam Banks and Josh Roby - have done a stellar job in reproducing the feel of the series in a game, and more importantly, producing a flexible, straight-forward system that can be applied to any game or setting wherein the relationships between characters are more important than what, exactly, they can do.

After some consideration, I bought a copy of the rules. I don't think any game except Fate has convinced me quite so quickly that I needed to try it. Fortunately, one of my gaming groups, already into comics, were willing to take it on with me running it. So tonight is the character generation session, and I'm looking forward greatly to it.

We're creating a new setting for the game, rather than try to play in the established Smallville continuity, or indeed, in the wider DC universe. There are a few reasons for this, for me - the sense of discovery will be that much greater when they players don't know the world; I won't be constrained by the existence of known elements of the world in the stories I can set up; and I'm freed of the awkwardness caused when some of the players know the setting far better than I do.

Our initial setting is a small university town in England, in a world where masks and powers have been a part of history, and where - at least in the UK - they enjoy some protection of law. There are national-standard heroes who are well known, world-class ones who are even better known, and a host of smaller-scale local masks, who probably won't be known much at all.

I've written up a few broad strokes of detail for the setting, but the rest will only appear after we've run through character generation and seen what aspects of life are going to be important for the player characters.

Posted by Drew Shiel at October 14, 2010 2:12 PM

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