Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Defining the Kitchen Sink

One of my favorite posts (as well as one that still gets the most hits) is the one in which I name the Kitchen Sink Coalition. This union was united by a single platform of “More Lasers!” (although I’m sure “Bear Cavalry” was in their manifesto as well).

I was going back and forth with a friend this weekend after our Palladium Week, and he asked me who I thought were the original signatories to the Kitchen Sink Coalition. My short inaugural list included the following:

-Encounter Critical


I could see White Plume Mountain (legacy member) and Lords of Creation being on there as well. I was attempting to think of some sort of litmus test for possible participants. Possible questions included:

-Would a dragon who had his eyes replaced with jewels that shot laser beams be out of place in the setting?

-Could any element of the game be reasonably expected to appear as part of a heavy metal album cover?

-Is there at least the possibility of Beast Men with machine guns?

-Does the weapons & equipment section have at least 3 examples of archaic weapons fused with advanced technology?

What do you think? Anyone you would add to this august body? Any conditionals or qualifiers for potential members? I also believe they need a coat of arms, if anyone wants to take a crack at it.


Rob Lang said...

Is there more than one system to perform ethereal acts (i.e. magic and psyonics)?

Tenkar said...

Is Atlantis / Atlantians referred to directly / indiectly as being part of the past / present?

Chgowiz said...

Do you have the ability to have zombies, robots, magic and Hell all mixing together in one adventure? And more zombies.

(Word verify - nerfest - the hardest restructuring of a ruleset possible)

John Fiala said...

I just wanted to bring up that Gamma World seems to me to be this sort of Kitchen Sink game, at least in the really fun versions.

(There was also a D20 version called Omega World that was done up back when Polyhedron ran in the back of Dungeon and hosted D20 minigames.)

Zachary The First said...

@John: I’ve gone back and forth on Gamma World. I definitely think certain versions at the least would qualify. Loved Omega World, btw.

gnombient said...

It's not as wild-and-wahoo as the others on the list, but I always felt that Fading Suns was a game (setting, at least) with lots of kitchen sink potential. Mysterious and powerful alien artifacts, sci-fi tech, medievalisms galore, theurgy, psionics, demons, Husks (zombies), weird alien monsters (which I suppose could include dragons with laser eyes)...

Vincent said...

I think that FGU's Space Opera is a Kitchen Sink game, at least in the Sci-Fi realm... it had the organizations, classes, and skill, equipment and Psi lists to accommodate adaptation of any SF source up to the point of its publication.

Herb said...

Lords of Creation not only belongs but should be considered the inaugural member. It predates everyone by years and beat Torg in publishing weird kitchen sink adventures as well as the game itself.

Chris said...

Gnombient beat me to "Fading Suns", so I'll have to throw the original "WH40K Rogue Trader" in there. It ticks all the boxes, and you can play it as an RPG.

Jeff Rients said...

On Gamma World: any game with flying lions that eat polyester and anthro-rabbits riding other giant rabbits and laser and Death Machines and Napoleon is a Badger pretty well fits my definition of kitchen sink.

Zachary The First said...

Nicely put!