Once Upon a Time, in the Zantabulous Land of
Zo. . .
Tailors face giants, enchanted queens dance with human peasants,
talking creatures perform domestic duties, witches cast curses
and fairies grant blessings. And all are seeking their Happily
Fairy tales and folktales have served as fertile ground for many
stories, novels, cartoons, movies, and games. They speak to
common -- possibly timeless -- human emotional concerns. Despite
being retold again and again until they are cliche and their
images instantly familiar, something about fairytales always
remains fresh and new, speaking expressively to even
long-familiar readers or hearers. Fairytales unite the ordinary
and the extraordinary in stories full of magic, wonder, and
Flavor, killer apps, excellent example and
instruction, and sheer mood blend with the kind of heart, love,
and optimism that quite frankly we need right about now, in
gaming and everywhere else. For all these reasons, and for the
sheer giddy delight of an Oz-Narnia mashup, Chad Underkoffler
gets the ruby slipper for The Zorcerer of Zo,
along with the 2006 Best New RPG Outie.
The Zorcerer of Zo (ZoZ) is a fairytale RPG by
Atomic Sock Monkey Press, publishers of Dead
Inside and Truth & Justice.
Inside ZoZ, you'll find:
- An extensive discussion on fairytales, their nature and
- An evocative game setting: the Zantabulous Land of Zo (and
its five Kingdoms) -- strongly influenced by much-beloved
fairytale otherworlds like Oz (naturally), Narnia, Wonderland,
Fantastica, The Neighborhood of Make-Believe. Florin & Guilder,
Neverland, Living Island -- and how it developed in-play with
the help of the author's gaming group.
- The "Good Parts" PDQ System -- a slimmed-down version
of the PDQ
Core Rules, complete in itself, suitable for fast-paced,
straightforward fairytale play.
- Extensive notes on how the initial ZoZ campaign was
begun, the setting and episodes were developed, how the game was
run, and the campaign came to an exciting climax (and advice on
how you can do the same yourself).
- Two "DVD commentary tracks" of textboxes -- one from the
author/GM and one from the players of the PCs -- on the Actual
Play of the campaign.
- An appendix with Bonus Material like campaign production
notes and additional NPCs.
In the words of Willy Wonka:
Close your eyes.
Make a wish.
Count to three.
Come with me
And you'll be
In a world of
Pure imagination. . .