You'll have to forgive me today, as I squee in delight, but I figure that I owe it to my loyal readers who may not know, to point out that there is a free, short, easily learned RPG system out there that you should definitely give a try to. The game? BADASS, by the author of the ever-awesome blog "Life of a Philippine Gamer". So, why is BADASS so badass? Well, read on and I'll tell you.
Now don't get me wrong, I like a full sized source book as much as the next gamer. Sometimes it's fun to just sit down and read an RPG book and let the old GM brain meats stew. However, sometimes you need a quick fix. Sometimes you need a game that will work for a one shot or just as an on the spot distraction. That's where short games come in, and BADASS has a smooth as silk system that you can get down in minutes. Coming in at just 28 pages, you could even print this off to have a paper copy very easily.
When it comes to game design, there is a simple addage: KISS. In longer terms, Keep It Simple, Stupid. Now, depending on the needs of the game you have different levels of complexity. BADASS, however, embraces its simplicity and uses it to be a fun and full game. There are few stats and even fewer choices to make before starting. This means that you and a group of players can get started quickly and just get down into the action.
It's Just Fun
To be fully honest here, I haven't played the game yet at any length, but I did do a small test with a friend to see how it would work. BADASS is a game that embraces insane BS and just runs with it. Even the die mechanic has an element of silly fun in it, where if you don't make a fist before rolling you lose your turn and take damage. Not to mention that the second you try to use logic or act rationally you lose all your abilities and the next hit will take you out. Seriously, it just seems like good clean fun.
This is actually the biggest area where I disagree with the Philippine Gamer. BADASS is damn good work, and I honestly think it's a crime that he isn't charging money for this. Will I take it for free? Yeah, sure, but this game is not your run of the mill free product. It feels like a professionally put together game, and it is worth money.