While cleaning out my role-playing games, I came across this blast from the past. ‘Macho Women With Guns’ was a parody game that came out in 1988. Designed by Greg Porter, this game was a sarcastic rant against the current gaming industry. This was before Xena and Buffy so role-playing games marketing was rather aggressively targeted against horny males. A book about Dragon eating habits and spell lore would sport a full color cover of a half naked female lounging seductively on a pile of gold. Imagine Frazetta covers without the self restraint.
So this parody game was made to make fun of the pervasive female art that was slapped onto the covers of geeky rulebooks. To no one’s surprise and the original designer’s horror, people loved the game. It turns out that geeky guys who bought sexy covers wanted to actually do something with those half naked warrior chicks.
The original game was barely 12 pages of combat rules. All you did was make a character, and shoot the shit out of things on a map. Because it is a parody game from the 80’s, the things you shot at include Killer Rabbits, Hellkittens, Drunken Frat Boys, Congressional Subcommittees, TV evangelists and Isaac Azathoth. You had a selection of guns to choose from, and the option to make your character top heavy which gave you some penalties but on the plus side it made you have big tits.
I always thought the best part was that you HAD to play a Macho Woman. You had to play the object of your lust therefore creating a symbiotic understanding of how it feels to be treated like a life support system for a pair of breasts. Who am I kidding? I have seen grown men argue over who’s character had the bigger tits and which character could suck down the most aliens. It’s a game about some of our basest interests which in my opinion, is a fun thing.
In true gamer fashion, there were sequels. ‘Batwinged Bimbos From Hell’ covered playing demon girls with wings. ‘Renegade Nuns on Wheels’ covered vehicles and holy sluts. A last supplement came out called ‘The Final Chapter Part One’ which became a sort of over view for the supplements so you could have handy information in one place. Yes, the definition of a gamer geek is that even when playing top heavy demonic bimbos, you still want to make sure all the rules are right.
Eons later, the franchise was resurrected with a D20 version. For non-gamers out there, think of a D20 version as if someone took your old Atari games and made them playable on your Windows XP. At 40$ it was most difficult purchase I ever made in front of my wife. It’s the same wacky chauvinistic attitude with a lot more to offend people with. I like it for its sheer audacity. I mean, if I spend an hour making a barbarian warrior with D20 rules, at least the character now has oral skills, a Ralph Lauren fur bikini and a breast size that was determined by a complex math formula.
What amazes me is how far we have come. Tomb Raider, Xena, Le Femme Nikita and the hundred and one gun toting babes from Stargate and Star Trek have made Macho Women a standard where they were once a parody cliche. The game started as a joke based in base sexual impulses but after a few decades, our desires are refined into mainstream entertainment.
*Bonus* Below is a sheet of cut-out characters. Print them, cut them and amaze your friends!