Power-Gaming Munchkins

The “Munchkinisms for Fun and Profit” thread got me to thinking… Has anybody actually tried to run an over the top, totally satirical, munchkin archtype campaign? And if so, how did it go?

The traditional munchkin-style game doesn’t really work in BW. The game just doesn’t work if all you’ve got is a pile of sky-high numbers with no good BITs. And high numbers doesn’t really get to the feeling of munchkin. I don’t think BW combat really does that well, honestly. You can have W Reflexes and G8 Murderkilling and demolish everyone in a fight, but it’s not interesting at all.

What first springs to mind is Burning Airships, in that it’s a bunch of really powerful Elves, and it’s about as far from satirical or munchkin as you can get.

The idea of an entire party of “Angel-Summoners” going about trying to not trip over one an other in the pursuit of completely ordinary bandits and creatures is ludicrous, and such a party would never be able to advance unless their challenges kept pace with them (heroes being only as interesting as the villians they face) how long before the whole thing ends up looking like a badly done Monty Python skit?

It’s a complete abrogation of the BW GM’s responsibilities. The GM finds the BITs and hits them hard where they hurt. If PCs are just traipsing through the wilderness slaughtering bad guys they’re not making hard belief choices.

Oh I agree it would be extremely bad, and very much anti-BWG rules intent (I doubt that it would really work in any game setting). I was reading through the other thread (Munchkinism for fun and ptofit) and thought “Could you imagine all these characters in a single game?” (Something like an uber sword) as ridiculous as it seemed I figured somebody probably already tried it (so I thought I’ld ask.)

Comedy comes from the unexpected and inappropriate.

So have the Angel-Summoners write Beliefs that are totally inappropriate to their capabilities. The battle mage has a Belief of “I shall woo Lady Eleanor with a gift of rare flowers.” The social snake has a Belief of “I must defend Lord Buckram’s honor by dueling his blackguard of a brother.” The master sailor has a Belief of “I must serve the finest meal that the Duke has ever tasted.”

Then let them proceed to test themselves by finding strange uses of their talents.

Those could be funny even without Munchkinisms!
(And to be clear, I am not suggest my group try such an over the top gathering. Just wondering if its been done before)

Whereas I see nothing wrong with an “over the top” high power party. Heck, I play with those parties. Unstoppable wizards and ancient elves and lords of all they survey? Sure. They just need to face challenges suited to their impressiveness.

In fact, that’s no different from ol’ D&D. High level adventurers aren’t munchkins, they’re just high level. Powergaming is about eking out every possible edge the system allows, but BW doesn’t have any expectation at all that you won’t do that (or, to be fair, that you will). Balance just isn’t a Burning Wheel issue.

Our super-high-level Burning THAC0 party is nothing but rules-lawyering munchkins! We’ve been playing at that level for years.

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From what I’ve read, your Burning THAC0 game sounds like a blast, you must have a lot of fun with it.

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Save me again, Angel Summoner! I’m so fragile…so so fragile…