You can find the PDF here if you’re interested, but it’s not really necessary. The system’s simple enough that we don’t really need a bunch of copies.
To give you a feel for the game’s versatility, here are some summaries from random internet people talking about the games they’ve played using PTA:
- One guy used it to play Bachelor Who – about “Doctor’s younger brother, played by Bradley Cooper affecting an English accent. He’s basically drinking and whoring his way across the universe, hitting on anything female.”
- We played a game about professional wrestlers that featured no wrestling. The entire thing revolved around the real-world backstage politics of a group of deeply dysfunctional people. It was kind of glorious.
- Our plot was a very Astro-City-ish real lives and problems of the super powered story, and we had a blast making it.
- Ran a show once where a lone time traveller had to take a one way trip to the past in order to save the world. How? By keeping the Dodgers in Brooklyn.
- I’ve played a few times. The first series ended up being about a colony of werewolves in suburban 1950s, trying to keep from being noticed by society while their teenagers rebelled against the insular life they’d put together. We called it Desperate Housewolves.
- The show took place in Japan in the latter part of the 19th century, during the Meiji Restoration period. It was basically about efforts to set up a Western-style school in a small town near Tokyo (or Edo), but it was really about, of course, the personal issues and relationships of the characters. Dirty plots, secret romances, past guilts, and family obligations, oh my!
- We had previously talked about the show, No Man’s Land, and what we want out of it. The main influence is Carnivale: we wanted a gritty early 20th century setting with mystical threads throughout. We figured out that NML is about an ensemble of American soldiers in the trenches of France, 1917. Added to the horror of trench wars are inexplicable events out in the zone between opposing trenches, where death saturates existence—that zone was historically known as No Man’s Land. The timeline is set before the October revolution caused Russia to pull out and thereby allowed Germany to shift troops West and overrun the trenches.
I also wanted an excuse to link to this random RPG setting generator. I’m not actually suggesting we use it, and some of the results it spits out are nonsense, but sometimes I end up thinking, that sounds awesome.
Some example results:
- Premise: Transhuman cultists battle for supremacy as nanotechnology ushers in a new era of civilisation.
- Premise: Devil-worshipping romantics perform bizarre rituals in modern-day Rome.
Genre: Noir/Alternative History
- Premise: Psychic teenagers uncover a shocking conspiracy on newly-terraformed Venus.
- Premise: Elementally empowered nihilists compete in gladiatorial tournaments in the catacombs beneath the Vatican.
- Premise: Glory-hound journalists collect human souls in the magical land of Make-Believe.
- Premise: Animalistic aliens sate their thirst for blood amid the lawless Caribbean Isles.
Genre: Action/Western/Dungeon Crawl
- Premise: Cybernetically enhanced swashbucklers explore the mysteries of the Mind on newly-terraformed Venus.
- Premise: Cybernetically enhanced nuns struggle to survive in post-apocalyptic Tokyo.
- Premise: Cynical conspirators smite the wicked and unrighteous amid the desolate moons of Saturn.
- Premise: Lycanthropic warriors sate their thirst for blood during the Second World War.