Saturday, January 3, 2015

Statement of Purpose

In 2002, the year I graduated high school, Square-Enix released a game called Kingdom Hearts. It combined elements of Square-Enix's Final Fantasy series with the Disney animated universe to tell an epic story of rescuing princesses and saving worlds. The various distinct worlds are presented as planets in a sort of galaxy, and the protagonist moves between them in a sort of spaceship (well, most of the time...), and adheres to a sort of Prime Directive in order to avoid "spoiling" the natives of each world with knowledge of the bigger picture.

Eventually, I got to wondering. What if this "galaxy" doesn't just include the Disney and Square-Enix worlds? What if it encompasses every animated world and videogame setting? And what if, after overcoming the existential threat posed by Xehanort et al., King Mickey resolved to expand his own influence in order to prevent such a scenario from ever repeating?

A few years later, I ran a Big Eyes Small Mouth (BESM) table-top role playing game, in which the players could play as any non-Disney cartoon character or non-Square-Enix videogame character. A party consisting of Nico Bellic (GTA 4), Zap Brannigan (Futurama), Luffy (One Piece) and Welkin Gunther (Valkyria Chronicles) arrived in the Kingdom of Duloc just in time to help Shrek and his allies defend against King Mickey's invasion. The campaign foundered due to scheduling issues, gaming system issues, and so on, but the idea remained.

In fact, what started as a silly spur-of-the-moment idea over a decade ago has steadfastly refused to leave my brain, and as time goes on I become more convinced that I ought to revisit the concept. Not just for fun crossover gaming, but also as a vehicle for exploring nostalgia, cultural and historical imperialism, and the economics of consumerism and mass entertainment. If that sounds a bit pretentious, well, you're not wrong. If that sounds unappealing, well, it'll be easy enough to not read those particular posts.

So that's what this blog is. In time, I hope it will focus on recording an actual tabletop gaming campaign, but until I get a group together for that, it will be a repository for all my campaign prep and any random thoughts that are at least tangentially related to the setting.

(future posts will be have more pictures)

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