Thursday, January 15, 2015

I ♥ "The Strange" (and Lazerhawk)

And in fact, it was ♥ at first sight. BAM. Like that.

As you know (because you're not a lazy mofo who never updates his or her blog and is thus always late to the party), The Strange is Monte Cook Games' newest entry in the Cypher System line, and it's by Bruce Cordell and Monte Cook, edited by Shanna Germain and illustrated by Matt Stawicki. It can be described (neither unfairly nor unkindly) as "Planescape Modern". The book looks like this --

 --on the outside, like this--

Image totally pinched from
-- on the inside, and has illustrations like this one--

-- and this one--

--right? I mean, those are things you knew already. Because of the not-a-lazy-mofo etc. etc. etc. thing.

Okay, good. 

So I saw it at my FLGS and heard a few mentions of it and stuff and then a buddy of mine picked up a copy and he said it was kind of cool so I looked through the book a little and it did indeed look really cool and --

Let me slow down here, a minute, and tell you why it looked cool.

The notion of moving back and forth between realities made out of fiction? That hit something deeeeeeeeeeep inside Doc Rotwang!. It's probably the same for you -- that the worlds and places you create, in your head, are so, so real to you...just not real enough. They're just beyond tactile, just this side of material, such that your senses can but brush against them, that tingle on your skin when something hovers close but does not touch it.

Of course you'd want to see them made real. Of course you want to pass through that membrane. That's what you daydream of. One of your greatest regrets, and one that you'll take to your grave, is knowing that you'll never really be able to do that, to go there, to the places in your mind.

PCs in The Strange, though -- that's what they DO.

Maybe they don't go to the places that they've dreamed up (though that can happen), but -- man, it's something, right?

I was intrigued. I had to know more about this game.

And then my FLGS scheduled a demo of it run by Ryan Chaddock who is a licensed third-party publisher for Cypher System stuff and I went to the demo and I was sold on the thing in like the first five minutes because not only is the concept totally aces but the system is all easy and unobtrusive and holy crap ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥oifoiqowi oweoqwioersafdsafdjsfd


The game is crazy bananas, and I think you can tell by now that I kinda dig it. my buddy who'd bought the game decided that, although he liked it, he didn't like it as much as I obviously do, so he gave me his copy. He's a swell, that Chris.

So let's call this my official endorsement of the game, and Bob's your uncle.

Speaking of Bob, Ryan Chaddock is not named Bob but he is the author of The Translation Codex, which is not only the first third-party supp for this thing but also, in my estimation, muhfuggin' essential. It presents some character options which, and I am not kidding, really ought to have been in the core book. That's not a slam on its authors -- that's a high-five for Ryan, and my official endorsement of it. Got The Strange? Getting The Strange? Getchoo The Translation Codex. Easy. I just said so. 

Also, I ♥ Lazerhawk. Play me out, Lazerhawk!

...thanks, Lazerhawk.