Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Summer LEGO RPG Setting Jam

I want to officially announce the start of the Summer LEGO RPG Setting Jam! The goal of this game jam is to design a small roleplaying game setting based on the Lego sets we enjoyed in our youth. The jam will run from Wednesday, May 8th to Monday, July 8th, 2024.

 
6075 Wolfpack Tower image source


What is the Summer LEGO RPG Setting Jam?

A few years ago, I wrote about how the Lego Castle sets that came out when I was a kid formed an important part of my fantasy imagination, and helped to shape what I want from fantasy roleplaying games. I know I’m not the only one who feels like this, and that childhood Lego sets continue to inspire many of us who enjoy designing and playing RPGs today.
 
So, the goal of this project is to design a small game setting based on a few Lego sets. I encourage you to draw on sets that you remember from your childhood - either ones you owned and enjoyed, or ones you saw and wanted but never got to play with. Now is your chance! 
 
(Since this is a celebration of Lego's original sets and settings, I think it will be more fun if we don't try to riff off of Lego's licensed interpretations of other company's characters.)
 
 
1492 Battle Cove image source
 
 
What Kind of Setting Should I Make?
 
Create a setting where the players can be heroes or scoundrels, and let them decide how to act. Set up rival factions with conflicting goals, make a powder keg, ready to explode, and hand the players a match they can strike. Give them a safe home base, a dungeon to delve, a wilderness to travel, monsters to fight. Make the game you want to play!
 
I encourage you to think small, to be expressive and concise, and to write a setting that will fit on 1-2 pages of 8½ × 11 paper when printed out. You can reference the game mechanics of your choice, or save space by leaving your setting systemless or system-neutral.
 
Anyone who uses your setting will have to do additional work to get it game-ready, so help them out by making something exciting and inspirational! Basic guidelines are more important than fine-grained distinctions. Be clear and coherent, use motifs and themes, and trust that the person running the game will make decisions that are shaped by the tools you've given them.
 
 
6878 Sub Orbital Guardian image source
 
  
How Do I Participate in the Game Jam?
 
Once you've created your setting, go ahead and put it online! If you have a blog, make it a post. Upload it somewhere as a pdf. Then, share your links here, as comments on this post!
 
Once the game jam closes on July 8th, I'll write a new compilation post that has links to all the entries. I'll also create a companion document that combines all the pdf entries into a single file.
 
I'm going to create a setting too! I can't wait to see what everyone comes up with!
 
 
6879 Blizzard Baron image source
 
 
Anything Else I Should Know?
 
Please credit the original Lego sets using their official names and set numbers. That way, everyone will know what inspired you, and anyone who likes your setting can look up the same sets you drew from.
 
Please do not include racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia, antisemitism, or islamophobia in your entry. I reserve the right to not share or promote any game jam submission that I think is being used to harass or bully.

Lego trademarks of the LEGO Group. The names and images of all Lego products are copyrights of the LEGO Group and are used here without permission. All names and images of Lego products used here are intended to represent Fair Use under the 1976 Copyright Act. Their use is non-commercial, and is part of a transformative artistic project, which is not a substitute for the original products, and should not affect those products' value.

So please, share your Summer LEGO RPG Setting Jam entries in the comments below!

25 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. I'm really hyped to see what you'll come up with! Thank you for encouraging me to put this out there!

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  2. Ooh, what a clever idea! I think I'll join in.

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  3. Wolfpack Tower. Damn, you’ve got my number.

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    1. Right? It has a treasure chest, a secret door, and a GHOST!

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  4. I am firing a gun into the air for this post. HYPE!

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    1. Yes! Please join in if this inspires you!

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  5. Here in Brasil we had a lego knock-off called Mega Bloks that had a super cool pirate island skeleton set. Does that count as lego for this game jam?

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    1. That sounds awesome! I think you're completely within the spirit of the jam. I would love to see what you do with a skeleton island!

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  6. I like this idea a lot, hopefully I'll be able to contribute something but in any case I'm excited to see what others might come up with.

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    1. I know what you mean! I've gotten a really positive response from people. I think there are going to be some really creative entries!

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  7. This seems so cool, I'm all about this idea. Now the only problem is deciding how many of my favourite themes from when I was a kid I want to try to incorporate.

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    1. I understand your dilemma! There are really a wealth of options to choose from...

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  8. I had each of the sets you pictured. Legos were a different animal to what they are now. I miss those days, but my daughter loves the Legos of today so we still buy them from time to time and have a lot of fun.

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    1. I have a general preference for the Lego-specific settings rather than their version of Marvel or Star Wars or whatever, but I'm glad they've kept innovating over the years!

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  9. this sounds awesome! I wasn't a big LEGO fan as a kid, but instead I played (A LOT!) with Playmobiles. do those count for the jam? It'll be great to revisit those characters again after so much time XD

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    1. I know almost nothing about Playmobile. I think it would be great to see them through the eyes of someone who really loved them growing up! Please feel free to use what you know best.

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  10. "I encourage you to think small, to be expressive and concise, and to write a setting that will fit on 1-2 pages of 8½ × 11 paper when printed out."

    I should have listened. But in any case - it is done!

    https://riseupcomus.blogspot.com/2024/05/legojam-castle-hexcrawl.html

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    1. Amazing first entry! I like that you managed to merge the toy-ness of Lego with a sort of fairy-tale repetition and Tolkein's idea that evil must be defeated again in each generation.

      (Also, please note, all other entrants, you don't have to try beat Josh here!)

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  11. An amazing idea! Here's my entry. :)

    https://tabletobrpg.blot.im/the-azure-archipelago-a-lego-hexcrawl

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  12. This isn't mine but I don't see it listed, so I list it here just in case so it won't be lost: https://farmergadda.blogspot.com/2024/05/lego-adventurers-dino-island-summer.html

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  13. This might not exactly fit the brief, but here's my attempt at making gameable monsters out of the X-Pod creatures: https://www.tumblr.com/drcuriousvii/751102072365137920/summer-lego-rpg-setting-jam-entry-the-monster
    (jesus christ I hope commenting works THIS time)

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