Tuesday, May 17, 2005

This is causing a bit of a stir at RPGnet

From Great White Games, publisher of the excellent Savage Worlds rpg:

Modern Ops is GO!
In the crowded streets of Mogadishu sits a downed Blackhawk surrounded by a tyrannical warlord and his drug-crazed warriors.
In the villages of Iraq lurk insurgents led by the ruthless al-Qaeda.
In the arid desert of the Bakaw Valley is a terrorist training camp.
In the mountains of Tora Bora lurks Osama bin Laden and his fanatical followers.

Against these desperate foes are the most advanced armies ever created. But after the smoke from the smart bombs has cleared, it's the infantry who must go in and finish the job.

These are today's threats. These are Modern Ops.

Modern Ops lets you recreate the battles of the modern world, from regular military operations to special forces actions in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Soviet Union, and more. You'll find complete troop lists for today's combatants, including vehicles and aircraft, as well as our trademark Savage Tales and random Events that make every battle a surprise.
Head over to Smith & Robards and pick up either the full color PDF, or the black and white POD (in soft cover or hardback) now!

Check out our free batch of Modern Ops figure flats, including US Marines, Al-Qaeda, Taliban, a Bradley, a Little Bird and a Huey! Come back next Tuesday for more Modern Ops goodies!

Maybe I'm getting soft nowadays, but I think I prefer the victims of my simulated violence to be axe-wielding pig-snouted goons with no history of exploitation and/or neglect by the West. Sign me up for a day of rolling dice and pretending to punch Nazis, but this pitch for Modern Ops makes me a bit queasy. Just this morning I was considering running for my d20 Modern campaign an adventure featuring a thinly-veiled Aum Shinrikyo as the villains. You remember those guys? They were the apocalyptic cult that released the sarin in the Tokyo subway back in '95. I guess the difference here is that right at this moment in history my country doesn't have people on the ground in Tokyo fighting the Aum. The idea of playing a game in which I'm a SEAL or Green Beret is cool only up until you reach the point where you start shooting the exact same people that the real SEALs might really be shooting right fucking now. Foreign policy as it appears in the typical Bond flick is more along the lines of what I like to do in my modern games. Thwarting Dr. Maybe in his underwater volcano on the moon sounds way more sexy than creeping through Tora Bora looking for that bastard bin Laden. Modern Ops and similar products (d20 Afghanistan and d20 Somalia immediately spring to mind) seem to lack that crucial element of escapism that I like in my roleplaying games. The VietNam rpgs (Recon, Tour of Darkness, was there another?) at least give us a few decades to find some perspective.