#RPGaDay 2016 Day 15 – RPG Inspiration

OK, so I fell off the bandwagon a bit for a few days. It was a strong start to #RPGaDay 2016 for me, but the weekend and it’s nefarious plans of “things going on” distracted me. Plus, I started a new regular day job today, so that took up time. Also, Cut to the Chase Games released TG0 Depths of the Croaking Grotto today for six (!) supported systems – 5th Edition, Pathfinder, Swords & Wizardry, Savage Worlds, Dungeon Crawl Classics, and Castles & Crusades. It’s a Pay What You Want title, but it’s seen a lot of downloads, which is pretty cool.

RPGaDay2016

15) Your best source of inspiration for RPGs?

Hands down, the best inspiration I get comes from movies. I love movies – something about being able to enjoy a cinematic escape for 2 hours has always tickled me, especially in a theater. Movies have a way of stimulating my creative juices, so I look to them to get me pumped for an upcoming game or to get out of a writing run for an adventure I’m working on.

But it’s more than just “movies are fun.” I love the soundtracks, which when used to good effect acts as the de facto GM behind the scenes. I love the sets and the costumes and the clear choices that go into many of them (and the baffling choices that go into others!). I love the writing – movies live and die in the script, because a good actor and good director can only make a bad script into a bad movie.

There are many movies in my personal library that I use for inspiration, depending on the game type. Let’s look at a few specifically for the fantasy genre, yes?

Lord of the Rings
The premiere fantasy movie series, an adaptation of a classic in fantasy literature. There’s a lot here to like, that’s for sure.

Conan the Barbarian
“What is best in life?” The classic sword and sorcery movie of the early 80’s, Arnie’s turn as Howard’s Cimmerian is the prototype for barbarian heroes.

Army of Darkness
Admittedly, this ostensibly third movie in the Evil Dead series does NOT fit in with the first two, but it’s ridiculously fun. The original ending, where Ash sleeps too long, does fit better with the first two movies, but the rest of the movie is too heroic. Stick with the theatrical ending.

Hawk the Slayer
I have Knights of the Dinner Table to thank for turning me on to this fantasy movie! It’s bad, but so enjoyable it’s easy to overlook its faults. Its got one of the best cinematic adventuring parties around!

Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of the Dragon God
The first official D&D movie is bad and completely misses the point of D&D. The second one swings almost too far in the opposite direction, but it has a pile of interesting heroes that I find it hard not to like. Avoid the third movie at all costs.

Willow
This is one that I grew up with. It’s terrifying, visceral, magical, crazy, and features Kevin Pollack as a brownie! And Val Kilmer as a wandering swordsman! And fuzzy trolls that turn into a hydra-like monster! And actual uses of the polymorph spell! “I stole de babee!”

Ladyhawke
This one I remember for one scene – Rutger Hauer’s knight character hurls his broadsword across the length of a church and impales the corrupt priest! AWESOME!

Dragonheart
It’s freakin’ Sean Connery as a bronze dragon teaming up with a wandering knight to take down a corrupt lord. What more do you want? I recently picked this one up on Blu-Ray and hope to be watching it very soon. Likely won’t hold up to my memories, but who cares? SEAN CONNERY AS A DRAGON!

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