Worst RPGs ever

A comment left on another post sent me down the rabbit-hole of the worst RPGs ever.

The less said about “The Unholy Trinity”, the better; all are self-published efforts that as far as I know never saw print editions, and arguably shouldn’t really be considered as proper published games. The first two are notorious purely for the offensive nature of the game content, and only deserve to be flushed down the memory hole. The third, “Hybrid”, is quite literally complete gibberish from beginning to end, and it’s difficult to tell if it’s the ramblings of someone with zero SAN, or the whole thing is an elaborate practical joke by a troll.

Some of those intended as serious games bring back memories. I remember occasional commenter Amadán’s review of Senzar (A rilly kewl game if you’re 14). As for Wraeththu, well, I’ve actually played a convention game using that setting, something I signed up for largely on the reputation of the GM, knowing little or nothing about the game’s background.

At the top of the “bizarre setting” list is this game, based on a series of novels by Storm Constantine. The Wraeththu are hermaphrodite bishonen ubermenschen who are apparently slowly taking over the Earth—and, along the way, converting the occasional human into one of them by transfusing blood into them. Oh yeah, there are only male Wraeththu—and their genitalia look like flowers or anemones.

Although that RPG.net piece more or less admits that the problem with the Wraeththu game was more down to the clunky system that didn’t fit the setting. The game I played didn’t use that system, fortunately. Don’t remember much about the actual game now, suspect it may even pre-date the publication of the official RPG, except I think the player characters were all human, and the hermaphrodite bishonen ubermenschen of the setting were the opposition. Perhaps that premise would have made for a better RPG?

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One Response to Worst RPGs ever

  1. John P says:

    Looking at that list of games, I have to say that I feel Phoenix Command doesn’t really deserve to be on there. It wasn’t an RPG in its own right, but rather a horrendously complex combat system that could be incorporated in other RPGs. And being complex doesn’t justify being called bad – as long as you haven’t paid good money for it I suppose. To paraphrase Jessica Rabbit, “I’m not bad, I’m just written that way!”

    I recall playing a few games with one GM who liked to use it just for the hit locations rather than any of the other mechanics.

    Cheers
    John

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