I have an idea for a roleplaying game campaign just about daily. This morning I had two but one of them resonated enough that I thought I would dribble down a sketch of the idea and share it. Who knows… maybe someone will fancy playing it?
Remember the Stargate film and Stargate SG-1? There’s a recently released Stargate SG-1 roleplaying game powered by a hack of the 5th Edition ruleset and I have that rulebook. The thing that always disappointed me about the film and series was the determination the writers had to make it a strictly science-fiction story and spend lots of time demonstrating how the apparent “magic” of the aliens was really just really advanced science.
I find the separation of science and magic boring. What if the Stargate opened to worlds where magic was a real thing? What if the aliens knew how to harness magical power?
Secondly, what if the Stargates were linked on a quantum level to just one other Stargate? The idea of dialling the coordinates for another Stargate and being able to go anywhere was another one of the ideas in the TV series that I felt was a little bit silly. Limiting the gates to behaving more like gates, leading to one other destination, opens up the idea of a whole network of places to explore where holding each Stargate is strategically important.
Lastly, if we are really going to have a war with an alien intelligence who currently control the Stargate network, what if the missions were a combination of recon exploration and tactical assault against that enemy? Let’s not have any stardrive technology to allow for bypassing the Stargates – another idea that watered down the TV series – and instead make the focus of the war about taking, holding, and defending those Stargates?
What would a war across multiple worlds, a network of Stargates, look like? With this idea I can get my fix of near-future Military-SF and exploration all in one go. Adding in aliens with magic, and later (perhaps) humans who learn to harness that magic, will give the game a different flavour. We can mess around with the boundaries between science and magic, which is very much more interesting than limiting the game to technological solutions.
Overall, this idea grabbed my attention. I think it’d be easy to grok and players could create small mission teams with a range of specialists, while the GM provides a range of meaningful challenges and choices out there in the field.