Since some anon was nice enough to give us a substantial translation of Night Wizard! 3rd Edition for Xmas this year, I thought I might check in to see who out there is playing Japanese RPGs, translating them, or just interested in them.
Currently, I'm running a Double Cross 3E game for my regular group. We're about five sessions in, and they're really enjoying it. The group is five high school students and their homeroom teacher, who is actually their handler for the UGN. All of them have secrets, all of them have trauma, and all of them have goals that are mutually exclusive with at least one other character. As sessions have gone on and the things they care about are threatened, it's been interesting to see how they deal with the clash of their normal lives and their lives as superpowered secret agents.
So who out there has a cool Japanese TTRPG story to share? Or questions about such games? I can probably answer quite a few of them!
Including the link to the NW3E download. Not my work, but it's pretty good if you're just looking to get the rules and the gist of Night Wizard. I'd kill a hobo for full scans of the corebooks, though.
What, Night Wizards? It's described in another thread (>>44621828), but here's the greentext short version:
>Magic has been sealed a long time ago, and regular innocent people are known as "sleepers"
>Demons have started invading reality and erecting pocket dimensions to spread chaos within
>PCs are "Wizards," wielders of magic who go into these dimensions, go dungeon-diving and kick demon ass in these secret battles
>You can't go using magic in front of innocents, as they can effectively "roll to disbelieve" and outright make your powers stop working (if someone catches you flying on your broom in the sky and says "that's not right," you will plummet out of the sky)
The Anon that offered to scan the Girls und Panzer war game expansion here. Just posting an update on my situation. It's pretty obvious I haven't scanned in the flipping game map yet, nor the crap printed on the other side of it. Well, my computer is still broken as hell. It turns out I burnt out the PCIE slots in the mobo and the (used) replacement didn't fare so well either, dying inside of 24 hours.. So I'm still trying to get my computer fixed -but I haven't forgotten about you gaiz.
Night Wizard is kind of like Mage: The Ascension as reimagined for anime. It's a modern day setting where magic was long ago sealed away by the collective unconscious of humanity. The barrier that keeps Earth safe has been weakening, though, and monsters called "Emulators" have been creeping through and feeding on human souls. The PCs are wizards, people with magic powers who have to protect humanity from the Emulators, but have to do it from the shadows because the barrier doesn't make any allowances for their powers to exist. Using their powers in front of non-magical beings can cause them serious problems. To get around it, the Emulators create pocket dimensions where their powers work fine and lure humans into them to eat them. Wizards have to penetrate these pocket dimensions, deal with the local reality rules, fight their way to the Emulator and destroy it, and then sometimes escape before the place collapses explosively.
>Night Wizard is kind of like Mage: The Ascension as reimagined for anime.
I don't think this is a proper way to introduce Night Wizard, as both games have very different goals all together.
I've got these two months ago as a way to help myself on my self-learning of the Japanese language and...DM for a few friends of mine.
Japanese games tend to be more oriented toward one-shots and convention play rather than long-term campaigns. They also tend to have mechanics that relate to very Japanese concepts of existence like impermanence, the weight of karma, and the burden of power.
>CardRanker will never be translated
It hurts so much.
It's kind of weird how resistant the Japanese TRPG industry seems to be to selling digital versions of their games. I mean, this is all I get from searching 'TRPG' on DLSite: http://www.dlsite.com/eng/fsr/=/language/en/keyword/TRPG/age_category%5B0%5D/general/per_page/30/from/fs.header
I think Zettai Reido might be the system with the most supplements on DLSite, and only half of it is on there.
In addition to this, they tend to divide a session into formal phases. Like, instead of saying "Add up XP whenever; the end of the session is probably convenient" there's a heading for the End Phase where adding up XP is one step. More than that, though, a lot of things that would normally just be good DMing advice are actually part of the rules.
Overall things tend to be more narrativist than a Western RPG would be when trying to do the same thing - there's almost always a mechanic similar to Fate points that lets you fudge the odds or encounter lucky coincidences when you need to, because Japanese culture traditionally believes that this is a thing people can actually do. Likewise, IIRC Tenra Bansho Zero has an example of a party deciding to infiltrate a villain's fortress, where the DM just skips directly to the throne room and has the villain ask how they got past the guards (whatever answer the players come up with becomes canon).
Being skilled in combat often has inherent social and utility uses, like sensing peoples' killing intent or figuring out where enemies are from by their fighting styles.
Most games are d6-based.
The Japanese publishing industry is strongly against digital media in general. Manga, books, TTRPGs--basically all of the big publishers are convinced that if you create electronic copies of things, then everyone will pirate it all the time and your business will die. You know, the exact opposite of what the American publishing industry has proven: that if you provide easy, inexpensive electronic access, your sales go *up*, not down.
It was actually a really big deal that Ver Blue was able to get approval from FEAR to do pdf versions of Double Cross, and why I'm even more disappointed that the game's translation is on hiatus indefinitely.
So in Double Cross, for example, you have a stat called Encroachment. When you use your powers, you *gain* Encroachment (instead of spending points like you would in a Western game). The higher your Encroachment goes, the more powerful you become--but the closer your character gets to transforming into an unstoppable rage monster and becoming an NPC permanently. The game is designed to create a sort of "inverse death spiral," where getting more desperate and wounded makes you *more powerful* but also more likely to lose your character.
There's a similar mechanic in Tenra Bansho, and it's even called Karma there. The more powerful your character becomes, the more likely they are to become corrupted in spirit and become a "demon of destruction." The weight of your past sins can actually contribute toward your character's story arc, and your character generally can't die in a fight unless you choose to allow it, but it might be the difference between success (and going out in a blaze of glory) or failure (and going over your karma limit and becoming the thing you hate).
Japan isn't big on the Internet in general. Most people only access it through their phones, and web design is years behind. PCs have a pretty small presence, being mostly small and cheap models. PC gaming is almost non-existent except for VNs and doujin stuff, and even then most people play VNs with a joypad because a keyboard feels unnatural.
IIRC Tenra Bansho characters also become more powerful as they take damage.
I've heard of an American pro wrestler talking about how hard it was to adjust to the Japanese way of doing things - in the US style a wrestler shrugs off attacks at the start of the fight and pretends to take more damage near the end, while in Japan a wrestler starts off pretending to take lots of damage from enemy attacks but shrugs them off near the end.
Can't say as I'm too familiar with either the Start Set or Rulebook EX, but neat pickups nonetheless!
If you want to help out with the translation project, I'd be more than happy to have more hands on deck. I'm borrowing a laptop from my brother in order to do anything online, and between that and my job, I haven't been able to get to much translating.
I'd also recommend honto.jp if you want to pick them up, as it's honestly fairly cheap comparatively, and they offer a couple of different shipping methods outside of Japan. There's a few different tutorials out there on the net to help with that, too.
>Party consist of thus:
>Killing Machine/Edge Master: Really the only adult in the party at 18. Spaniard foreigner guy from a family of demon killers who modify themselves to fight them. Kind of the black sheep in that he's a ridiculous goof-off and really laidback. Despite being an 'Edge' Master his Magic 'Sword' is actually a giant hammer he's made even more gigantic with certain skills. Has the second highest average attack, but can deal the most max damage with certain per-scene skills. The most normal member so far.
>Killing Machine/Great One: 16 year old guy that modified himself to get revenge on Emulators for killing his sister, and then turned out to be a minor deity. His player plays him as pretty much a parody of your typical edgy protagonist. Has the most well-rounded stats/abilities but can do some broken stuff with Great One skills once per episode or so.
>Taoist/Gunslinger: A super spiritual 17 year old guy who lived off in the mountains for 3 years under the guidance of his spiritual cowboy master 3 years prior to the campaign. Dual wields magic pistols and handles healing. Banters with the previous character a lot.
>Werewolf/Werewolf: My character. Took Animal Wizard and is a talking cat. basically got changed by the same thing that changes Werebeasts, which gave her human intellect and a lot of physical power. Has a strong sense of responsibility but is also pretty haughty and lazy because cat. Despite being tiny and the only character with no weapon, does the highest average damage.
>Returner/Broomman: A magic sword robot that is also somehow the reincarnation of a Knight of Camelot. His mechano heart is full of justice and is on a globetrotting quest to find the other Knights reincarnated into sword-bots to restore his ancient kingdom. Ridiculously good defenses.
That sounds fun as fuck.