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Paranoia

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Aglondir:
Bundle of Holding has two bundles for sale: Paranoia Red and Paranoia 2004.

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/2021PARANOIA

I played Paranoia once, in the 90's. It was funny for about an hour, and then it got old, like a joke told too many times. I've always wondered about playing it seriously, where the players are trying to escape a dystopian complex set in the future.

Question 1: Is that even possible? Which version would be better suited for it? Or am I wasting my time?

Question 2: What are the differences between the versions?

Question 3: What are your experiences with the game in general?

jhkim:

--- Quote from: Aglondir on December 01, 2021, 06:08:52 PM ---Bundle of Holding has two bundles for sale: Paranoia Red and Paranoia 2004.

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/2021PARANOIA

I played Paranoia once, in the 90's. It was funny for about an hour, and then it got old, like a joke told too many times. I've always wondered about playing it seriously, where the players are trying to escape a dystopian complex set in the future.

Question 1: Is that even possible? Which version would be better suited for it? Or am I wasting my time?

Question 2: What are the differences between the versions?

Question 3: What are your experiences with the game in general?

--- End quote ---

(1) I've run and played in some Paranoia adventures across multiple sessions, but never a campaign that lasted more than a few weeks. I don't think it's possible to play it seriously - the humor and satire are built into the game. I think it's really designed for at most short campaigns. I could see extending it some by having a series of adventures leading to a conclusion. However, I don't think it can go further. If the PCs succeed in escaping the complex - then that's the end of the game, at least as something recognizable as Paranoia. You could switch over to Gamma World scenarios, but then it's basically a new game.

(2) I know the original edition pretty well, and briefly tried the 2004 "XP" edition. They have many differences, but neither stood out to me as a whole thing. As I recall, the XP edition added a minor meta-mechanic like hero points, but it didn't have a major effect overall.

(3) Overall, I think done well, it can serve as a fun change-of-pace from usual games - especially because it is a parody of RPGs themselves. Some of the adventures have wonderfully inventive extensions of the concept. But the jokes will run out eventually. I think games last longer than Toon, but it's still best in limited doses.

Ratman_tf:
Paranoia is a great beer & pretzles RPG for friends with simliar tastes in humor. (Dark, absurd and silly in equal measure)

The last time I played (which was quite a while ago) the GM had all our secret factions want us to throw acid in the face of a "traitor". Over the course of the game, all the PCs wound up throwing it at the same character. Poor guy was a mess by the end of the adventure. You could only get away with such cruel humor in a game like Paranoia.

Aglondir:

--- Quote from: jhkim on December 01, 2021, 06:42:45 PM ---(1) I've run and played in some Paranoia adventures across multiple sessions, but never a campaign that lasted more than a few weeks. I don't think it's possible to play it seriously - the humor and satire are built into the game. I think it's really designed for at most short campaigns. I could see extending it some by having a series of adventures leading to a conclusion. However, I don't think it can go further. If the PCs succeed in escaping the complex - then that's the end of the game, at least as something recognizable as Paranoia. You could switch over to Gamma World scenarios, but then it's basically a new game.

(2) I know the original edition pretty well, and briefly tried the 2004 "XP" edition. They have many differences, but neither stood out to me as a whole thing. As I recall, the XP edition added a minor meta-mechanic like hero points, but it didn't have a major effect overall.

(3) Overall, I think done well, it can serve as a fun change-of-pace from usual games - especially because it is a parody of RPGs themselves. Some of the adventures have wonderfully inventive extensions of the concept. But the jokes will run out eventually. I think games last longer than Toon, but it's still best in limited doses.

--- End quote ---

Thanks John, that's basically what I was afraid of (the jokes run out eventually.) Think I will pass on this one.

zend0g:

--- Quote from: Aglondir on December 01, 2021, 06:08:52 PM ---Question 1: Is that even possible? Which version would be better suited for it? Or am I wasting my time?

--- End quote ---

If I were do game with PC trying to escape from a dystopian complex, I would use any other rule set aside from Paranoia. Players that are familiar with Paranoia are going to have expectations on how that game is to be played and you will be fighting an uphill battle to maintain a different tone. 

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