When someone says “Hey I can do this with Adventure Time”, you can’t help but be happy about what you have done.
When you have a young kid wanting to play Munchkin and half the people wanting to avoid it like the plague, how do you neutralise all the arguments?
Short answer… grab a GM Screen…
… maybe I should back up a little.
I know how Munchkin normally goes down with my friends… normally involving either table flipping or cards flying off the table. Now what if you’re playing with youngsters?… short answer; tears and tantrums.
So what happens when a youngster wants to play Munchkin but you know the chaos it will cause?
Well this is what I did… I opened up Munchkin and placed the cards behind a GM screen.
I then extracted all the race cards and class cards and gave them to the other players; they each chose a race and class, then I asked for a player to draw 1,000 gold worth of items from the Treasure Deck for each player and then we started playing.
And it surprisingly worked… I used cards I had to give me ideas for enemies and NPCs as well as setting their ACs and attack threat as well as going off book for some interesting encounters.
The Leprechaun who made someone exchange a wishing ring for a “Duck of Doom” which reduced him to level 1 (don’t worry I lifted the curse later).
The Giant Rat riding an Angry Chicken which they ending up defeating by dropping a mace on the chicken and the Elf Wizard drop kicking the Rat as he landed (I’m not even kidding when I said it was the adult’s idea).
The trapped corridor that somehow a Wizard and cleric didn’t set off but the Thief did (I went overboard on it).
I drew cards from the Treasure Decks for the players to gain and even threw a bit of Munchkin back in by giving the Dwarf Thief an item which would allow him to level up by stabbing an ally in the back (which he did when he was alone with the Elf Wizard).
I also added some of my own puzzles that changed the tone for the players who wanted a different challenge. Uniquely one of the youngest players solved it for the oldest Elf Wizard.
Now why do I believe this story is relevant?
Firstly, this is a great way of playing Munchkin for starters without the arguments (or less of them).
Secondly, it’s a quick and easy way of creating characters without having any need to open complex charts or tables as you follow the stereotypes of each type.
Thirdly the artwork gives players an idea of who they are.
OK now for the real reasons:
Munchkin is very random; you can get lucky with the cards and win or end up taking on a Level 20 with nothing and being left in the dust. By choosing what the party was going to face as a team meant that everyone could take it on.
Secondly, there was a challenge to all players and everyone offered a solution. I’m going to write the Rat Runner up and release it in a few days but it was a great scenario and funny to GM.
They had 1000 gold worth of items and their skills and were effectively told, “there’s a Giant Rat riding a Giant Chicken; use these items to defeat them.” and that’s what they did, they forgot that potion of confusion reduced their opponent’s level (or a player) and causes the Rat to stagger about.
They forgot about the +3 Dagger of Betrayal and remembered it could give them a level by stabbing an ally and damaging them.
They forgot that a Pointy Hat of Power was +3 and instead used it as a way of trying to capture a Leprechaun.
Finally, someone then said they wanted to do this with Adventure Time card game; someone has looked at a game and seen another way of using them. This is a brilliant designer’s trait, being able to see them take something they already have and use it in another way.
Another great lesson… never place a Pointy Hat of Power on a Leprechaun.