Friday, June 12, 2015

It Came From the Trapper Keeper


A blue one, in a plastic cargo crate along with the contents of the Gamma World 3rd Edition box set, Advanced Marvel Super-Heroes character cards, Descent Into the Depths, and The Isle of Dread. I was looking for the G.I. Joe game my friends and I wrote, but instead I would the partial Transformers rpg.

The credits says the writers were myself and my friend, Al. My brother gets a "design consultant" credit. Most of my gaming group are credited as "playtesters", but that must have been aspirational as it was never played, as far as I can recall.


It was partially inspired by Marvel Super-Heroes--it used an action table, though it also seems to have had some sort of "action points" (called "Firepower") possibly borrowed from FASA Star Trek, I haven't compared the charts to know for sure. The abilities were inspired by the Tech Specs on the back of toy packages.


7 comments:

rainswept said...

I wonder how many homemade Transformers RPGs are out there? Mine was based on AD&D, using height in feet for HD/Level, though I can't remember anything else about it.

An untapped market that could have helped TSR capture another cohort of 80s kids?

garrisonjames said...

Always interesting to see what one can find when rummaging around in the boxes or folders of really old stuff. I never paid much attention to the giant robot stuff, but I knew people who were obsessed with it...so a game based on that sort of stuff might well have been a real money-maker for TSR, maybe it could have changed history and saved them from financial ruin. Maybe TSR would have survived and eventually bought out a little company on the West Coast that made funny cards...

Trey said...

@rainswept - Probably a big one!
@garrisonjames - I was never as interested in Transformers as I was other stuff, but packaging that came with ready made ability scores always got my interest.

Martin R. Thomas said...

I love finding stuff like this. Years ago I collected almost all of my old stuff including character sheets and homemade RPGs and supplements and organized them into a big plastic file box, with little tabs to separate each game system. It's buried in the bottom of my office closet but about once every few years I dig into there to look at something that I haven't seen for about 30 years or so. I have a whole series on my blog about this kind of stuff.

I never jumped on the Giant Robot train myself, but I love your drawing! That alone would have helped my interest.

Cheers!

Chris C. said...

That is so awesome! I remember trapper keepers and hand-written game materials with fond nostalgia.

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