IP's that ought to have their own RPGs

finarvyn

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I see various threads here and there about RPGs based on a couple of movies (such as the Ghostbusters RPG) or sometimes even a single movie (such as Labyrinth) and I wonder how someone chose those particular Intellectual Properties to focus upon for a RPG. The Alien RPG is based on a half-dozen or so movies, but I wonder how much background is actually there and how much gets invented for the game.

Which makes me wonder: what IPs are out there which are just screaming "pick me" but somehow no one has make an RPG about that IP? Not a case where I could say, "well I could use system XX to run that," but an actual game with character names and artwork/screencaps and the like. The real thing.

Two come to my mind offhand, and I'd be interested to see what others have to say.

(1) Pirates of the Caribbean. You've got five movies to work from, full of a stable of interesting characters just dying to become a line of miniatures. You have history to draw from, giving easy access to maps and persons who might fit well into the game. And I don't really think that anyone has done a great pirate game yet. (There are a few decent ones, but nothing that really dominates the industry. 7th Sea was my favorite, but the new version isn't my thing.)

(2) Harry Potter. There are deck building games and the like, but no actual RPGs. I know that JK Rawling has said that she didn't want a RPG to be made, but since the movies are all done (original 8 plus the new series which is ongoing) and the novels are all done (7 books) it would seem like someone somewhere will throw a pile of cash her way and get the rights.

What have I missed?
 

Dumarest

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I vote for E.C. Tubb's Dumarest of Terra, with write-ups for all the known and mentioned places from the books, the Cyclan, the Universal Brotherhood, the Original People, various noble houses, slavers, mercenaries, starships, the Erhaft drive, slow-time and quick-time drugs, etc. It'd need to have exciting rules for knife fights, of course. Lasers uncommon but deadly. There's a whole galaxy in which to adventure and explore aside from one man's quest to find his homeworld.
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Séadna

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I vote for E.C. Tubb's Dumarest of Terra
Just considering its influence on the game, do you think it would work best as a setting supplement for Traveller or with its own rules system?
 

Dumarest

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Just considering its influence on the game, do you think it would work best as a setting supplement for Traveller or with its own rules system?
Its own rules, as it needs dynamic back-and-forth combat if it's to emulate the source material. I like Traveller but its combat rules are not particularly visceral. You'd need a whole bunch of new rules for the Erhaft drive instead of the jump drive, and the psionics rules wouldn't approximate the Cyclan or various psychic-sensitive mutants from the books, so you might as well build from the ground up.
 

The Butcher

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Generally speaking I prefer serial-numbers-filed-off stuff. Everyone in my group is excited about The Expanse getting its own RPG and I’m like “screw you guys, Traveller did it first and better.”

Pirates of the Caribbean.
I’d use Pirates of the Spanish Main, for Savage Worlds, cranking up the supernatural element as needed.

Harry Potter.
I’ll give you this one. This is the sort of property that might call for a specifically designed ruleset. (closest I can think of is Mage: the Awakening + Innocents and pattern each House after an Atlantean Order).

I vote for E.C. Tubb's Dumarest of Terra
Traveller. The game’s title and spelling is lifted off the books for God’s sake.

Its own rules, as it needs dynamic back-and-forth combat if it's to emulate the source material. I like Traveller but its combat rules are not particularly visceral.
Yeah, that might be an Achilles heel — not crazy about Traveller combat either. (The drive and the psionics are easy enough to rule in or home brew.)
 

Dumarest

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Generally speaking I prefer serial-numbers-filed-off stuff. Everyone in my group is excited about The Expanse getting its own RPG and I’m like “screw you guys, Traveller did it first and better.”



I’d use Pirates of the Spanish Main, for Savage Worlds, cranking up the supernatural element as needed.



I’ll give you this one. This is the sort of property that might call for a specifically designed ruleset. (closest I can think of is Mage: the Awakening + Innocents and pattern each House after an Atlantean Order).



Traveller. The game’s title and spelling is lifted off the books for God’s sake.



Yeah, that might be an Achilles heel — not crazy about Traveller combat either. (The drive and the psionics are easy enough to rule in or home brew.)
Naturally, but that's not what this thread was for:
Not a case where I could say, "well I could use system XX to run that," but an actual game with character names and artwork/screencaps and the like. The real thing.
 

Simlasa

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Generally speaking I prefer serial-numbers-filed-off stuff. Everyone in my group is excited about The Expanse getting its own RPG and I’m like “screw you guys, Traveller did it first and better.”
That's my frame of mind as well... games based directly on popular settings always make me feel chained to the canon, often because other Players can't step away from doing anything but replaying the basic plot of the original (as I've seen happen multiple times with Star Wars games).

That said, film/book/TV shows I'd like to see INSPIRE new RPG settings:
Gormenghast
Roadside Picnic (I have played in a game of Stalker but that was meh)
Tom Corbett / Space Patrol
The Andersonverse (a mash-up of Thunderbirds/Joe 90/Captain Scalett/UFO/etc.)
 

Raleel

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I've always wanted a Transformers RPG. Though I doubt any of my playgroup would want to play it :B.
I think Cortex Prime will do this extremely well. It has transformation powers pretty well built in, very similar to the superhero genre.
 

Chris Brady

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Personal Opinion: The best IP settings are the ones that are not just vehicles for the main characters, things that have a single season or a single movie require a lot of extrapolation, where as something with a decent amount of world building, maybe through multiple media, like officially afflialted Video Games, Comics, TV programs and the like. Like The Dark Crystal or The Chronicles of Riddick.
 

Supervisor194

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I'd love to see Irwin Allen's stuff in RPG format. I actually started writing up a Savage Worlds Land of the Giants a while back but never finished it. Maybe I should. The Time Tunnel would also be a cool one to do. You kids go look those up. :smile:
 

Simlasa

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Like The Dark Crystal or The Chronicles of Riddick.
Was there more stuff for The Dark Crystal than the one movie? I know something new is being worked on...

As for video games, my picks would be the Fallen London setting (kind of absurd Lovecraftian steampunk... ish), Silent Hill (something expanding on that theme), Deus Ex (cyberpunkish), and Project Eden (enormous hive-city with deep roots and monsters).
 

Teyrnon

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Has anyone done an Honorverse RPG yet?

E.M. Foner's Earthcent Ambassador series would be an intriguing setting for an RPG.
 

Teyrnon

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I'd love to see Irwin Allen's stuff in RPG format. I actually started writing up a Savage Worlds Land of the Giants a while back but never finished it. Maybe I should. The Time Tunnel would also be a cool one to do. You kids go look those up. :smile:
Lost in Space too?
 

Simlasa

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Oh yeah, The World of the Dark Crystal by Froud has a TON of world-building that never made it into the film.
Oh, I kindasorta knew that. When I was a kid I went to an exhibit of the costumes and props from the film... so much detail put into things you barely got a look at... like all the weird utensils on the Skeksis table. But were there books, shows, comics? Other stories published somewhere?
 

finarvyn

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I'd love to see Irwin Allen's stuff in RPG format. I actually started writing up a Savage Worlds Land of the Giants a while back but never finished it. Maybe I should. The Time Tunnel would also be a cool one to do. You kids go look those up. :smile:
I'm not sure what Allen did, but for some reason your post made Harryhausen pop into my head. The Agronots movie and all of the Sinbad movies would make a cool setting. (I have somewhere a DVD boxed set of those movies.)

Has anyone done an Honorverse RPG yet?
Ad Astra had something going based on WEG's d6 game mechanic. I have the beta somewhere, but I don't think they got it done.
 

Rich Harkrader

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Battlestar Galactica
Trollhunters
Voltron
Transformers
Equilibrium
Resident Evil
Silent Hill
Foundation
Heritage Universe
The Culture by Iain Banks
Predator
Sandman
Percy Jackson
Twilight
Gunslinger by Stephen King
Terminator
Duck Tales
Thundercats
Ninjago or Chima
Garg oyles
Earthsea
Redwall
Cowboy Bebop
Berserk
Howard families books by Heinlein
Big Trouble in Little China
Heat
Chronicles of Narnia
Prydain books by Lloyd Alexander
Dragonriders of Pern
Heralds of Valdemar
Darkover
 
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Bunch

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Battlestar Galactica
Trollhunters
Voltron
Transformers
Equilibrium
Resident Evil
Silent Hill
Foundation
Heritage Universe
The Culture by Iain Banks
Predator
Sandman
Percy Jackson
Twilight
Gunslinger by Stephen King
Terminator
Duck Tales
Thundercats
Ninjago or Chima
Garg oyles
Earthsea
Redwall
Cowboy Bebop
Berserk
Howard families books by Heinlein
Big Trouble in Little China
Heat
Chronicles of Narnia
Prydain books by Lloyd Alexander
Dragonriders of Pern
Heralds of Valdemar
Darkover
What he said.
 

Chris Brady

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Silverlion

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I've always wanted a Transformers RPG. Though I doubt any of my playgroup would want to play it :B.

There is an Unofficial one out there, not White Wolf; that's pretty good.

On the other hand, I used Hearts & Souls and this PC Sheet:
TransformersH&S.jpg

They're designed to print three at a time, and you draw a line graph from the start to each stat. Much like the old sheets that needed the red cellophane to read their stats. Hey, it is rough I threw it together years ago. But it worked.


As for what I want? MASS EFFECT!
 

opaopajr

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Well, My Little Pony has one, as does nearly every Whedon and Whedon-esque property... Maybe Archie comics? Riverdale, Jughead the Hunger, Chilling Tales of Sabrina?
 

Simon Hogwood

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Personal Opinion: The best IP settings are the ones that are not just vehicles for the main characters, things that have a single season or a single movie require a lot of extrapolation, where as something with a decent amount of world building, maybe through multiple media, like officially afflialted Video Games, Comics, TV programs and the like. Like The Dark Crystal or The Chronicles of Riddick.
I think this is probably a smart idea. It's probably one of the reasons why Harry Potter keeps coming up - that series is a great example of world-building threatening to overshadow plot. A variation of this came up in a discussion of the Zorro RPG, which if you'll indulge a self-quotation -

I suppose that's a niche for licensed RPGs in general, bringing together the inclination and legal ability to do a deep dive into a given setting and rationalize it.
- brings to mind one quite old story with lots of variations that could be mined for great effect:

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It's too bad that Modiphius already doing a John Carter game; otherwise one might even consider using the entire Burroughs-verse as a whole.
Rick and Morty?
Meh, you can have the nihilist posers - I'd like a Back to the Future RPG (Or at least a supplement for Timewatch)!
 

Moonglum

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Just to be a drag, my vote is 'none!'. Play all those settings, joyously and in good health. But for god's sake let's leave out the new systems. I feel like our hobby is drowning in new systems, and the biggest favor you can do the world is to use an existing one for whatever campaign has you fired up.
 

Voros

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Just to be a drag, my vote is 'none!'. Play all those settings, joyously and in good health. But for god's sake let's leave out the new systems. I feel like our hobby is drowning in new systems, and the biggest favor you can do the world is to use an existing one for whatever campaign has you fired up.
I'd disagree. I think a far too common mistake in RPGs is to try and fit a setting or genre into an existing system rather than build the system to fit the setting or genre. That was endemic throughout the 80s.
 

Dumarest

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I'd enjoy a well-done Area 88, but it would need some really good dogfighting rules, a good way to make each jet fighter and its armament options distinct and meaningful choices, and clever rules to incorporate the soap opera aspects. Black and white interior art, please, from the comics.
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