As a person of Chinese descent, I’d like to greet everyone a Happy Lunar New Year! It’s the year of the Earth Ox from here on out so wear red, vist your local Chinese community and treat yourself out to some Chinese food to celebrate the new year. Kung Hei Fat Choy everyone!
Oh, just in case people are curious about the traditional Chinese Horoscope forecast for the year:
The OX year is a conservative year, one of traditions and values. This is not a year to be outrageous. A slow but steady year.
This OX year will bring stability and growth where patience and diligence pays off.
This is a year of Harvest – when we reap what we have sown. Take care of business this year, do not let things slide.
To celebrate this event, lets take a quick look at three games to check out for your fill of Kung Fu action:
- Qin: the Warring States – This beautifully illustrated RPG takes place in the Warring States Era, and is firmly rooted in the Wuxia Tradition. While you shouldn’t expect Exalted level martial arts and special effects, it’s a great system for simulating wandering swordsmen, cunning courtesans and wise sages in a time where China was still a very splintered nation. The system is interesting, allowing for some of the Wire-Fu effects without turning into Legend of Zu. Check it out here.
- Weapons of the Gods – Now say if you really wanted Legend of Zu, pick up Weapons of the Gods. Taking place in Mythic China, this RPG was born out of a Hong Kong comic book franchise of the same name. Mind-blowing special powers, brightly colored special effects, and unique mechanics make for an awesome Kung Fu game of supernatural prowess. Eos Press are the people to check out for this one.
- Final Stand by Tim Denee – Final Stand can be best described as “one part Tekken and two parts Kung Fu Theatre”. This 23 page PDF download contains one of the most amusing combat systems I have ever encountered in any game, amateur or professional. Set in a rather generic backdrop known as Big City, Final Stand has a five minute character creation process using Stereotypes from Chinese movies that anyone can immediately recognize. In fact, playing up the quirks of each stereotype actually rewards the Character with Chi that he can use in combat. You absolutely owe it to yourself to download this PDF.
I’m a big fan of the Wuxia Genre, admittedly, so I’m always more than willing to run a pick up game of Final Stand, and might actually be able to churn out a decent game of Weapons of the Gods or Qin: the Warring states (even if my ancestors seem to have lost that conflict.) Assuming of course, that I had the time to run it.