Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Thoughts about Nuclear Sunset

So I have begun work on Nuclear Sunset: Northeast and it's got me excited all over again about the project in general.

And apparently, I'm not alone, as the first book, Nuclear Sunset: Southwest is still in the top 15 list at RPGNow. That's an unusually long stay for me.

But I digress into weird proud poppa mode.

One of the things that popped into my head while Darrin and I were brainstorming this, was to have each region be its own genre to make each sourcebook feel truly fresh and not just the same campaign slathered over different geography.

I started in very familiar PA territory- namely, the gonzo Western. Now Western as post apoc story goes at least as far back as Mad Max and recently made a triumphant return in Book of Eli but what I did was a gonzo Western, which has no less a hallowed history in the post apocalypse genre, thanks to Fallout.

BTW- Fallout 2 one of those things that makes 1998 the greatest year ever in gaming- though I'd forgotten that little series had you?

If you want to have a gunfight with pimps and mobsters in New Reno, Fallout 2 has your back. On the other hand, if you want to fight mutant cyborgs and aliens, Fallout 2 also has your back.

But the tabletop genre had moved away from the gonzo. I have no idea why, except a brief idea that RPG writers like to take themselves very seriously. There's nothing wrong with this, just don't let it get in the way of the fun.

And btw, I am definitely guilty of taking myself too seriously. Maybe right now.

So, while the Southwest really grabbed me first, mostly because of this Marshall Chronicles idea floating around my laptop in various files as a novel/novella/game/who the heck knows, I also had an idea to do something really different, which is what I'm working on now.

Post apocalypse as superheroes.

If you think about it, it makes perfect sense. You have all these mutants running around a post apocalypse landscape. It's almost as if we were telling the stories of pasts of future days... future days of the past... eh... it'll come to me.

And we still have the gonzo because these latter day mutants (and yes, I would welcome a pamphlet from the Church of Latter Day Mutants, thank you) are getting the idea that they need colorful costumes, code names and a nemesis from "historical documents", aka comic books.

Cue the Galaxy Quest theme.

And the Northeast makes perfect sense for that, because that is still ground zero for the comic book industry.


Pun Isaac said...

Go ahead and take my money now, because I'm loving this idea.

mikelaff said...

I'd had the "Supers in the Post-Apocalypse" thought a few times.

I think DC has too (judging by the No Man's Land plotline in the Bat books in the 90s)

I think it's a great setting for those sorts of characters.

Larger than life characters work best against the backdrop of a larger than life conflict where the stakes are high. Like WW2, where the future of global civilization is on the line. Or the post-Apocalypse where just defending your settlement against raiders can make the difference between civilization enduring or not.

Chuck said...

For me it's all about Days of Future Past, but I'm an X-Men Kid.

Now, Nuclear Sunset Northeast doesn't really draw on that story, a central premise is that the dominant post apocalypse mutants have found a similar storyline, USHER Dossiers #199, "Dark Future", that tells of humans putting mutants in internment camps.

And they don't like it, which is very bad news for the humans in the region.

Walt said...

That is an awesome tie in to one of your other products.

If you like supers in a post apoc-setting. I would suggest Ex-Heroes. I got it as an e-book from amazon. It is a "Popcorn" flick in novel form. Several of the greatest Vigilante Heroes of their day manage to survive a zombie apocalypse and try to rally the humans against the horde.

Fun stuff.

Bought NS: Southwest and Book of the Wastes today. Fun reads. Love the Marshals and The 88. Looking forward to the Northeast.


Chuck Rice said...

Thanks Walt!

The Marshals are basically why I started with the Southwest.

They are also a surprising group, because I see them as overwhelmingly a force for good, but many of my players see them as very, very gray, bounty hunters who are just in it for the money.

Although I also love UFOria and the Nightgliders.

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