"VIP of Gaming" Mag...
 

"VIP of Gaming" Magazine #3 (1986): "Mad Scientist" Adventure for V&V  

  RSS

dan2448
(@dan2448)
Active Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 11
26/07/2019 8:14 am  

The last of my recent V&V purchases was issue #3 of "The VIP of Gaming" magazine from 1986, because it apparently contains a V&V adventure written by Jack Herman titled 'Mad Scientist.'

It hasn't arrived in the mail yet. So I was wondering if anyone reading this post might offer any thoughts about it.  Good or bad, I don't care.  It only cost a few dollars and the money is already spent.

 

 

This topic was modified 4 months ago by dan2448

Quote
Majestic
(@majestic)
Estimable Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 106
31/07/2019 3:25 pm  

I purchased and ran this one years ago, and thought it was pretty good.  The concept of shrinking the heroes down to miniature size (where things like ordinary ants are suddenly very dangerous) is a fun concept, and my players had a fun time with it.

V&V GM and player since 1982, my current campaign is 29 years old


ReplyQuote
dan2448
(@dan2448)
Active Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 11
31/07/2019 6:57 pm  

The magazine arrived in the mail today.  As you well summarized, Doug, it seemed like a short but entertaining adventure where the heroes come up against a mad scientist in the same vein as Dr. Shrinker from the Kroft Superstars TV show of the 1970s.  After they are shrunken down, they get put on his gaming table (in his own kitchen?!?!) and have to fight off threats as diverse as insects and 'living' gaming miniatures.  Very good artwork by Pat Zircher, I thought.

I read through it in 10 minutes.  So maybe I missed something.  But it caught my eye that the bar/club in Houston, TX, with a punk band playing in it, where the heroes are intended to get into a bar fight at the beginning of the adventure, seemed to be a strip club, as the description of the Mad Scientist later on says something about his girlfriend being an exotic dancer there (or something similar). 

The Dr. Shrinker-like plot definitely seemed to be to be prototypical V&V.  The opening bar fight in in a Houston-area strip club was a little 'zestier' than usual, for V&V.  (Maybe I read this wrong/too quickly and misconstrued this? I hope not.)  I thought it was a great/funny touch.

I also thought it notable that the cover of this magazine published in 1986 (various leaders of WW2 illustrated as chess pieces) featured Hitler very prominently.  I can't remember the last time I saw Hitler on a magazine cover. A reminder of how RPGs and wargaming were once much more intertwined, I suppose.

Lastly, this same a magazine also included a positive review of a Marvel Super Heroes adventure, "Cats Paw," and a positive review of the British super hero RPG from the time, "Golden Heroes," the latter of which mentioned "Champions" and "Superworld" repeatedly, but not V&V. 

 


ReplyQuote
Majestic
(@majestic)
Estimable Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 106
01/08/2019 4:25 pm  

Here's the recap from when we played through that one around 2001:

#142 – The Mad Scientist – An explosion destroys the top three floors of Houston’s famous Parascience Institute (PI).  Guardians Anomaly, Portal, Dr. Mercury, Dai Oni, G-Force, and Entropy, along with ally Sinder, are called to the scene, where they discover that a bomb served as cover for a break-in.  Stolen were restricted files, plans, and a powerful device called the Electrochemical Expotentializer; PI Associate Director Carl Silverhead suspects missing twisted genius Dr. Bennet Morrow.  When the team divides to investigate various tips around the city, Anomaly follows a lead to the cowboy-punk bar Café Angst, where he tangles with Brickibrak and his gang, the Toughs.  Portal and Dai Oni arrive at the pub and meet Aries and Pisces of the Zodiac.  Later, Dai Oni charms information from one of the Toughs, which leads the team to the large home of Morrow’s girlfriend, Trixy Starlight, near Galveston Bay.  As the heroes approach the building, a green rain starts to fall and renders them unconscious.

 #143 – Table of Discontents – The vigilantes awake in a desert, where Dr. Morrow’s god-like voice tells them a riddle from the sky.  They journey towards a distant tower, finding themselves assaulted by giant statues that come to life when they draw near.  The heroes enter the castle and become trapped, but quickly break free.  Giant bees check them out, attacking when provoked, and the adventurers realize that they have been shrunk in size, trapped in a tabletop diorama on a kitchen table.  They make their way to an ant farm, fighting their way past the giant beasts down to the egg chamber, where they retrieve a hidden key and the circuit for the missing gadget.  The key allows their escape into the kitchen, where a journey past a household robot and cockroaches leads to a distant countertop.  The circuit powers a miniaturizer device, which they use to restore themselves to normal size.  They travel to Paradise Island in the Bahamas, where Dr. Morrow is found haggling with foreign agents and arrested without incident.

 

V&V GM and player since 1982, my current campaign is 29 years old


ReplyQuote
dan2448
(@dan2448)
Active Member
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 11
02/08/2019 11:46 am  

This summary was great to read, Doug: thank you!  The "cowboy-punk bar" brought "Buckaroo Banzai" to mind. I also liked the last sentence, where the team has to travel from TX to the Bahamas to find the doctor.  I remember when I first read that the other day and wondered to myself, whether, reading it over quickly, I missed some connection to the Caribbean - or if it was as random a location at the end as it seemed to me.  


ReplyQuote
Share: