Friday, November 13, 2009

Greek Geekery

As I have probably mentioned in other posts, I have a fondness for Greek myth and legend, as well as actual history. I'm actually the go-to guy for my mother, who is currently teaching her 5th grade class about mythology. So occasionally I get ideas to play a game in this kind of environment.

I've thought about using D&D for this before, but at times I feel that the D&D system is too limiting - even with all the classes, there are times when you can't get the kind of spread of abilities and such that you want in a character. So what I have planned in the past is to use the Cinematic Unisystem. Cinematic Unisystem is a variant on the Unisystem used by Eden Studios, who used to hold the licenses for the Buffy and Angel RPGs.

Unisystem is a points-based system, and at times it can get pretty complex; this is why for games like this, where the characters play Greek heroes, demigods, and the like, I prefer the Cinematic version, as it simplifies certain elements of the system to make things flow more smoothly - in a cinematic fashion, if you will.

I have visions of a group of characters traveling through Greece, armed with spear and shield, doing great and terrible things for themselves and for the gods, because the Greek idea of a hero is not the same as our modern idea - for ancient Greeks, heroes were simply those who did great things,whether they were good or evil. Achilles was a hero, even though he was a bastard, and so was Hector, even if he was a Trojan. Groups of heroes are even in-theme for Greeks, if you ever read about Jason and the Argonauts or Hercules and his companions.

I also would imagine the characters would follow, in some manner, the typical path of a Greek hero - they start out well, and then go on to perform a series of great deeds, each one greater than the one before. As they do so, they begin to think that they are on a plane with the gods, and that they should be one of them, and for their arrogance, the gods cause them to fall. It would be an interesting path to tread. I have at least two other games that use Greek myth as a basis, Hellas and AGON, but I would like to try my idea.

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