RPGs as Sports: Sports as RPGs!

On RPG Blog II, Zach had an interesting post about sports-based RPGs inspired by Clash Bowley working on a baseball RPG!  Zach has been thinking about a car racing RPG for a long time, and one commenter on his blog has some old tennis RPG!

With the massive popularity of fantasy football, it seems like this could be popular.  It smacks of building your own team and then playing them in Madden. Team building/franchise stuff is similar to empire building in an RPG.  There are a lot of computer “Sports RPGs” like Football Tycoon that do this.

Speaking of computer games, I have a friend in my gaming group who is obsessively playing Blood Bowl, a game of fantasy football in a different sense.  I remember the ads in Dragon Magazine for the minis version back in the day, it seemed awesome.  It’s based on the world of Warhammer, which of course also has an RPG.  Time for a Blood Bowl WFRPG supplement!

And what is more like the lives of adventurers than the shenanigans of professional athletes?  Money, sex, violence…

Is it a coincidence how many RPG scenarios have been “Tournament of Champions” type things?

I just bought a bunch of XCrawl supplements off the Paizo Black Friday sale.  In XCrawl, adventuring *is* a sport!  Here’s the blurb:

In Xcrawl, the players are superstar athletes taking their chances in a live-on-pay-per-view death sport. It’s a modern-day world with a fantasy twist, and the game is simple: the Dungeon Judge, or DJ, creates an artificial dungeon under controlled – but lethal – conditions. He designs the maze, and stocks it with monsters, secret doors, magical traps, treasure and prizes. The players must go through the dungeon and fulfill whatever conditions the DJ puts forth in order to win.

Xcrawl is a sport and the challenges are created, but the danger is no less real. If you die, you die. There are no second chances. Citizens of the North American Empire tune in every week to watch their favorite celebrities get eaten, paralyzed, turned to stone, and ripped apart. The nation’s hunger for blood and mayhem grows with every contest. How will you fare?

A commenter linked the Web series Gold in a previous article – in Gold, roleplaying is treated as a sport itself, has televised championships and all (kinda like Starcraf tin Korea).  Watch it if you haven’t, it’s funny.

Next Pathfinder game, I want to play a fighter or monk who kinda sees himself as a professional athlete…  He’s not drawn to kill because of his parents being slain by orcs or something, it’s just the spirit of competition!

What sports related RPGs have you played or seen?  Do you think it would be cool?

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2 responses to “RPGs as Sports: Sports as RPGs!

  1. Using RPGs to simulate a sporting event seems perfectly reasonable, especially under circumstances when players have gathered but cannot play the sport in question (baseball outfield is being re-sodded, football field is underwater, classic car-show booked the soccer pitch, etc.) I’ve never actually participated in such a session myself, but I look forward to hearing stories about it.

  2. P.S. Clash’s baseball RPG is out, it’s called “The Tools of Ignorance”: http://www.pigames.net/store/product_info.php?cPath=43_73_75&products_id=643

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