Cointoss, a 200 Word RPG

CointossSo there’s this contest. In the contest you’re supposed to write a whole RPG in 200 words or less. This struck my fancy because I thought “That wouldn’t take too much effort to attempt!” That attitude is probably why I didn’t win the contest, but whatever.

Cointoss RPG

You are you. You’re in a restaurant waiting for food to arrive. You stand up.

Cointoss can be played anywhere, for any length of time, without any preparation. At the start of a game, you are who you are, where you are, when you are. Then, the imaginary you deviates, and goes off to have some adventure you could never attempt in real life.

You can do anything you could normally do without question. The referee describes the world around you, and determines which actions have a chance of failure. Such actions require a coin toss: heads is success, tails is failure. Some actions may require two successes to work, others may only require a single success out of two tosses. Thus any action may have a 75%, 50%, or 25% chance of success.

Anything is within the purview of these flips. You can check to see if you’ve spontaneously developed superpowers, or if you can get yourself elected president. It doesn’t matter, because no game of Cointoss will ever last long. Eventually the food comes, and the game ends. So get moving.

This is actually an idea I’ve had in the back of my head for awhile now. There was a brief time where I carried a set of dice in my pocket because I liked the idea that I might find some empty moment to fill with D&D. There’s a group of folks sitting around waiting for something, or just being bored together, and I could pull out my dice and say “Ya guys wanna run a quick dungeon?”

But dice are a pain to carry around. They made my pants lumpy, and I was always worried about losing one. And those brief D&D-able moments were never as common as I thought they might be. I gave up on carrying dice around, but the idea stuck with me that I’d like the option of proposing some kind of role playing game in the spur of the moment. It would just require no prep, and no tools that wouldn’t be readily available wherever I go.

I came up with a flip of the coin, the universally available randomizer, very early, but never pursued the idea further than that. This contest was a nice excuse to get it done.

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