Saturday, July 29, 2006

Windmills of My Mind

Another windmill
Originally uploaded by Dylan Reece.
I saw this picture on Flickr and it reminded me of the time machine windmill from the Arcadia storyline in Grant Morrison's The Invisibles. This picture makes me want to construct an adventure around a windmill time machine. I don't think that I would go to the French Revolution to recruit DeSade though, but I'm not sure where I would take the story.

I loved The Invisibles. I admit that it got off to a bit of a rocky start. The original storyline with Dane being recruited into the group just didn't get it started for me, but the Arcadia story rocked on toast. If you haven't read it, you should really pick up the early trade collections and get an idea for the story. In hind sight, it was pretty ahead of its time, which is why I think that it almost was cancelled. It is also head and shoulders above The Filth. As great as Morrison's writing can be when its can be just as bad sometimes when he's off.

But then I don't expect creators to be one hundred percent consistent in their creativity. Its a bit naive to think otherwise.

Meanwhile, back at gaming. As much as I loved The Invisibles, I just don't see it an RPG. The very things that made the comic cool would fall apart when subjected to the overly anal scrutiny of a licensed RPG. That's not to say that elements of the comic and its stories can not be utilized, far from it. I think that the metafictional elements of the story in particular could really enliven an RPG (with the right group for it, of course). This is the thing that tripped up R. Talsorian's Dreampark RPG for a lot of people, at least through my experiences with groups and running the game for a few slots at a con, they couldn't grok the metafictional elements of the game. Sure, they could handle playing a character but a lot of them tripped over playing a character who was playing a character. Maybe it was just too many layers involved.

Perhaps a game where the players have characters who are aware of their being players would be the way to go. I think that something like this would be easy enough to implement in pretty much any system. It would pretty much just be a matter of bringing the table talk down to the character level, and I think that there are a number of gamers out ther already doing the handful of D&D games that I have experienced have evidenced.

But, there you go. A picture of a windmill on flickr send me thinking of The Invisibles, which takes me down to thinking of what I can implement in my games. This might be an interesting experiment to bring into my Tri-Stat super-heroes game. I'll have to bring it up to the players tomorrow.