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Next Monday's Game - Planet Jonny
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jonnynexus
Next Monday's Game
Having temporarily finished General Tangent's Star Trek game and with John not quite being ready to resume the Orient Express campaign, I thought I'd take the opportunity to run a game I've been wanting to run for some time, which is...

...jameswallis's as yet unpublished game, Cop Show.

Now the thing about Cop Show is that it's not a roleplaying game where you play real policemen (or women) in a police setting. Instead, it's a game where you play police characters in a 70's or 80's tv show about policemen (or women). Now I love this sort of thing, as can be seen by the two Dream Park articles (Dream Park on a Budget and The Storm Planet Rescue Game) that I wrote for the first issue of Critical Miss. And I've always felt, very strongly, that where you have a game where you have this concept of it being something within something, the outer something needs to be obvious and visible or else you'll just forget that's it there and miss the whole point.

Which means that Cop Show won't be half as much fun if you set it in a very good, realistic TV show with no obvious, jarring, "exactly the sort of stupid thing they put into TV shows", elements. Too good, and it will work so seamlessly that you might as well be playing cops in a cop game (as opposed to tv cops in a cop show).

What you need is a really bad idea for a TV show. Cheesy, over the top, and an obvious attempt to cash-in and rip-off a current big name film. Add a recent hit song gratuitously chosen as the theme for three reasons only - it's popular, it supplies a snappy (if irrelevant) title, and you won't have to pay a composer to write something original - and you've got a winner... or a loser? Look, you know what I mean.

Anyway, I think I've come up with something very, very bad.

THE ROLEPLAYING TIMES: JULY 1973

7:30 Chat
Topical and sometimes amusing lifestyle, news and current affairs discussion with Jonny Nexus, General Tangent, TAFKAC and John.
Producer Various
Subtitles... 888
8:00 Blockbuster (NEW SERIES)
This opening episode introduces us to the men of the Norfolk Constabulary's Elite River Division, and their sleek powerboat, Blockbuster. Their mission: to patrol the wild and lawless expanses of the Norfolk Broads bringing smugglers, crooks, and international terrorists to justice.
Producer Jonny Nexus
Subtitles... 888
10:00 Close
The National Anthem.

We do character creation on Monday. And any of you who know anything about Cop Show will know that Cop Show character creation can be very fun and very twisted.

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11 thoughts or Leave a thought
Comments
ffutures From: ffutures Date: July 13th, 2007 11:32 am (UTC) (Link)
It's been a long time, but I remember it well. Love the series concept.

I wish James would publish it in some form, if only as a PDF.
ffutures From: ffutures Date: July 13th, 2007 12:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Forgot to say that the series I've thought of running is CSI Neasden...
ffutures From: ffutures Date: July 13th, 2007 08:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
Or would CSI Craggy Island work better?
mytholder From: mytholder Date: July 13th, 2007 11:38 am (UTC) (Link)
It's the screenshot that sells it. Beautiful.
From: pengshui_master Date: July 13th, 2007 11:46 am (UTC) (Link)
Interestingly enough this is the starting point for a background I've been working on.

I've thrown in global warming making most of eastern england - an archipelago of islands, ripe with smugglers of nasty carbon-rich fuels (the petrol-pushers).
ffutures From: ffutures Date: July 13th, 2007 12:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
You might want to look at some of Peter F. Hamilton's near-future SF, which has a similar sort of background (except that the smugglers tend to be more into high-tech stuff).
From: pengshui_master Date: July 13th, 2007 07:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hmm.

You're referring to' Mindstar Rising' and the sequels right? I quite like that trilogy - otoh if not I'd like to know as I really like everything of Peter Hamilton's I found so far - except for the Deus Ex Machina ending of the Reality Dysfunction series.

I really like the alliteration in 'Petrol Pushers' - and it my future it is completely banned in enlighted legal systems. (eg, those that bow to the EU's political pressure.)

My background draws on quite a few different influences - the aim is for a high fanatasy investigative cop drama. I was thinking back to 80s rather than the 70s shows for the inspiration.

Of course as CSI:XXX spin off's go I still want to run CSI:Arkham.
ffutures From: ffutures Date: July 13th, 2007 08:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes, the Mindstar books.
mytholder From: mytholder Date: July 14th, 2007 01:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
CSI: Arkham

...genius.
From: evilref Date: July 13th, 2007 01:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
I wouldn't be able to resist doing a hommage to Life on Mars with that system. :-)
From: yojimbouk Date: July 13th, 2007 09:45 pm (UTC) (Link)
When I finally get the spaaace.com website up and running--beyond its current content of my blog--the downloads section will contain a version of Cop Show. Plus I'm currently scavenging elements of its rules for Frup.
11 thoughts or Leave a thought