I had this memory come back to me the other day. I usually never write about things like this on my blog. Especially because I wasn’t actually present during this game session, but we were playing the original Marvel Superheroes RPG and my buddy had a character named Ultraman. He was very similar to everyone’s favorite DC comic book character, but toned down slightly for the system. He was roughly as strong as Rogue and Electro, so able to lift/press 50 tons. Ultraman had ultra-vision, ultra-hearing, ultra-breath. He was fast, more agile that a trained human and possessed super human endurance and healing abilities. The thing that I remember most was his ability to fly and resist damage for powers, and he was vulnerable to sonic attacks.
But what made Ultraman awesome was his personality. This was roleplaying not roll-playing. It wasn’t all about statistics and being the best dice roller because the way your character was built was better than anyone else. His personality was kind of like a haughty paladin. He was noble and always good. He was superhero for christsake not a dark character. Comics at the time had bowed to Wolverine, the Dark Knight, and of course the anti-worldview of the Watchmen. It spawned the universe that created the bad-boy superheroes that followed the Golden Age where four-color was to be mocked and all characters were edgy heels or simply used as a foil for them. That is the world we lived in.
But back to that one shining moment that has been in my head over the last two days. To set the scene, Nick Fury and Ultraman were on top of the helicarrier on the flight deck. My brother was the game master and my buddy was running Ultraman. Nick says, “Blah, blah, blah,” it wasn’t really important now but had to do with the plot of the adventure.
Ultraman begins to reply as he normally would in character, but then Tom starts waving his arms around as if muffled by his cape and the winds generated for being on top of a flying battleship. This is why we play. Those little moments where you think of something funny to do as a character in the game, adlibbing a wardrobe malfunction to make your friends laugh- it is awesome that I have such creative and amazing people in my life.