Doing business, badly. Yey or nay?

October 1, 2009

So I need to poll the audience here, hence why I’m writing this post tonight.    I had one of those brain explosions that I rarely get, and I decided to act on this one.  It was the concept for a RPG/game-ish systems where players would effectively play a roleplaying game while simultaneously screwing one another over at the table, but in order to benefit the whole table.  It sounds fun (in concept, of course, as I haven’t exactly tried to test this yet) and it also sounds like a perfect system to plug into a game world that I’ve been working on for a long time now — Wildfire Industries.

WI was always built around the concept of pulling the stick out of the ass of business before shoving it violently into the head of business.  In short — it’s horrible corporate satire.  It’s the office politics you dread taken to a level of insanity and murder.  It was always a fun world for me to write/picture, and it even did quite well as a alternate reality game.

But just because it works well in one setting doesn’t mean it can translate to other settings, so here’s my question.  Would you play a pen-and-paper roleplaying game that centered on something like business?  Now, granted, it’s insane business, but it’s still business.  It’s still making contracts, securing funding, solving problems in the workplace, and things like that.  Sure the answer to all of these things might be having sex with the person you want to make the contract with, robbing a bank to secure funding, and killing everyone in a department to make sure there’s no more problems in the workplace, but it doesn’t work unless players want it to work.

So, would you want it to work?  Would you play a pen and paper roleplaying game centered around something as mundane as modern business?  Or would you believe that this system should be put to use in another type of game?



  1. Have you ever played Paranoia? It wasn’t centered around business, but it sure centered around trying to screw everyone else over while still having a mission to finish together. Hilarious.

    • Yeah, I’m a big fan of Paranoia, so that’s why I’m wondering if I could perhaps get this to work like Paranoia, without the nasty copyright infringement going on. Paranoia is a great game. Many <3s for it.

  2. When I was a wee boy, there were many board games we played (Ive never actually played a pnp rpg, gasp). Monopoly destroys families and most other games were childish. My two favourites from before I hit the teens? Escape from Colditz (being sneaky and screwing over the nazi player) and Insider Trading (being sneaky and making the market your bitch).

    Taking office politics and turning it up to 11 sounds hilarious to me. It’s something everyone can relate to or at least nod along with, how else do you explain Dilbert?

  3. Could be a lot of fun with the spin you put on it. I see the Dilbert-isms every day in real life too.

    Expansion packs could include doing business with companies in other geographies – Eastern Europe, India, Japan and China – all with their own cultural differences, challenges and pifalls….

    I think I have done some of this in role playing in corporate training 😉

  4. I’m totally in! Bring it to Tekko!

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