Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Game Table Interview: GM Jay

There was a time that Jay and I used to belong to the same gaming group. While I ran games most of the time, Jay already had a lot of GMing hours under his belt, and after our gaming group fragmented, his streak of GMing continued -- and he's racked up significantly more GMing hours by now, I should think.

In addition to all that work, GM Jay somehow manages to keep his game blog updated.

Anyway, here are his responses to the questionnaire:

What was the first RPG you remember playing?
Star Frontiers. It was the first RPG I officially bought from Nova Fontana, in Shoppesville.


What was it about the hobby that made you want to continue playing?
It was a fun outlet for my imagination when I was a kid, and it was amusing to churn out games that other people could enjoy, and feel like big damn heroes in as I grew older.


What was it about the hobby that made you want to run RPGs?
I enjoyed telling stories, and I found the idea of coming up with scenarios fun. Also, I was a geek, and I enjoyed the idea of having a hobby that not a lot of people were into, when I was a kid. Now that I'm older, I end up evangelizing the hobby.

What 3 novels have most inspired the games you run? Why?
Kingdom Come - Technically a graphic novel rather than an actual novel, the story pretty much hammered my outlook of having consequences matter. Nothing happens without a solid, and long lasting effect.

Lions of Al-Rassan - Guy Gavriel Kay's storytelling is evocative of an exotic fictional setting. Vivid descriptions, and complex characters and conflicting motivations between characters who are both heroes, despite how they're opposed.

The Elenium - Technically, a series of novels by David Eddings, the Elenium has memorable characters and an infectious optimism that echoes throughout his writing.

What 3 TV shows have most inspired the games you run? Why?
Fringe - J.J. Abram's funky pseudo-science mystery series has some of the best cliffhangers ever.

Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood - This anime has some of the best writing I've seen. Humanize a hated antagonist by having him utter a single line? Yes.

24 - Again, consequences. What you do, or choose not to do will come back to haunt you.

What 3 movies have most inspired the games you run? Why?
Ocean's Eleven - Actually the entire series. These movies are a great example of how to pull off a perfect heist, and how different specializations can be synchronized to make a great experience.

Dark Knight
- The Joker represents a great RPG villain. Even if the motivation is a little muddy, there's very little need to have more evidence to decide that he's an EVIL bastard.

Solomon Kane
- I like seeing characters evolve, and grow. Amusingly Solomon Kane actually has that in spades. Seeing the protagonist make a 180 (a justified one at that) is always entertaining and something I'd like to see in my games one day.

What is your favorite published RPG of all time, and why?

Mage: the Awakening. A game of hubris and ambition... and hope. It's interesting how players answer the question of what they'll do with unbridled power.

What is your favorite published game supplement or adventure of all time, and why?

The Tome of the Mysteries, for Mage: the Awakening. Effectively the second half of the corebook, details the various metaphysics in greater detail, as well as the Ethics of Magic.

What RPG have you always wanted to play, but never got a chance to?

Changeling: the Lost. I have a copy, but the chances of actually playing in it? Nil.

What upcoming RPG releases are you looking forward to seeing?

Legend of the Five Rings 4th Edition, due out this year. Being the game that I had run my first complete campaign with, L5R has a place in my library of books, even if I don't necessarily agree with the metaplot anymore.

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That's my side of things. Let me know what you think, my friend.

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