For a long time, I have wanted to play a Super Hero RPG. I don’t know what it is about them and before anyone says anything it’s not the lycra!
That feeling of having superpowers reminds me of comics, the Marvel films and the original Batman on TV!
So, here is my short journey through superhero games!
In the beginning
I remember going to Hamley’s in London to buy the first superhero game I played.
I think golden heroes came in a smart box and cost me, £9.99. It was the first time I wrote a check!
I think I still have it somewhere. The system was fun and easy to implement. You could make any hero you wanted. There were the classic heroes from The Flash to Batman but also you could create a unique character. I remember that there was a very good picture of the power duplication!
In my teenage years, Bank Holidays were when we played an RPG all day.
The first time I played Golden Heroes I created a whole town out of cardboard and polystyrene. I painted it and a range of small figures for the gaming group to experience. At the start, they were on top of a hill. This was a stool with a sheet draped over it. As the team was teleported to the town by the villain, I removed the sheet. In a grand reveal, the town was revealed and the game began!
Definitely one of my favourite openings for a game!
Mutants and Masterminds!
I play a lot of games and I can usually work out the rules and mechanics. However, with this next game, I failed miserably.
When I started to play Mythras I was also playing Call of Cthulhu and Shadowrun. Despite this, I still felt the allure of a superhero campaign. So, clutching my credit card once more, I went shopping!
Reddit was full of positive comments about Mutants and Masterminds – but I never really understood it. I keep reading it, but the rules and concepts eluded me. In the end, I gave up. It is still on my shelf. The unfortunate thing was it was a hardback book, so it cost me a pretty penny! I think I will look at it again, not to play – more for inspiration.
If you are like me, you probably find that comics and images of superheroes cause our brains to come alive with plot lines and villains. I never ‘play’ a game for all my ideas are turned into villains!
The perfect system!
If you watch my Twitch streams or watch any of my content on YouTube you will know that we have a new game that we are enjoying a lot!
Destined is a superhero RPG published by The Design Mechanism. That’s right, the same people who created Mythras.
I like to play and create with the Mythras ruleset a lot. It is flexible yet complex. The skills and combat system just seem to work and there is a careful balance between combat and role-playing. As well as all that, Mythras is highly adaptable. With one system you can play a range of campaign settings – from the original fantasy setting to M-Space which is the sci-fi version of the rules.
It was no surprise when Destined came out. I produce a monthly podcast for The Design Mechanism called Mythras Matters and I have had the opportunity to interview the creators of Destined, Mike and Brian.
This was back in 2019 so there has been quite a wait for the ruleset.
More than a drop in the game.
Originally we had decided that Destined would be a filler game. What this meant was that if we were players down for the main game we were playing, we would use Destined to fill the gap. This would allow us to play every weekend. However, when we played it, we were hooked and everyone wanted it to become a regular game.
The rules are like a carefully refined system from the original Mythras and they are so easy to play. The important thing for us was that we wanted the game to have a narrative but also have the feeling of superheroes!
Agony and Ecstasy was an adventure that we had played before, however, for me, it seemed too ‘normal’. Throughout the game, I felt that the heroes were more like vigilantes rather than heroes. That was why I decided to go for the epic setting for the current campaign. If needed there is still one level above that, Paragon, so we have somewhere to go!
It would appear that I have found a superhero game that I enjoy and I have already started to create a campaign setting! And, perhaps more importantly, we are all enjoying being superheroes!
What is next? Well, I have a lot of work to complete on three campaign worlds but I am currently thinking of a fourth!
I don’t want to give too much away, but let’s just say that it might not be safe to venture outside in the dark!