After reading a recent post on 8:05 PM on the Western Genre in RPGs, I got to thinking about it myself. Having grown up playing cowboys ‘n indians as much as we did, it is no wonder I have a fondness for the genre.
In film, I have to say that Clint Eastwood’s westerns really do it for me….particularly the Spaghetti variety as the “Man with no name” trilogy are often called (due to being filmed in Italy). A Fist Full of Dollars, For a Few Dollars More, and The Good the Bad and the Ugly really are a focal point for my love of Western Films. Other Eastwood westerns worth noting include Pale Rider, Hang’em High, The Outlaw Josey Wales, and more recently Unforgiven.
Of course, tribute must also be paid to the Duke (John Wayne) who consistently played the quintessential western hero to which Eastwood responded in playing the western anti-hero. The Duke’s performance in The Shootist definitely has some parallels to Unforgiven (which I don’t think are lost on Eastwood, who also directed). In any case, if I were to try to emulate film for Western-style gaming, it would be with Eastwood/Wayne films as the primary source material.
Back in the day, I was pretty jazzed about the existence of Boot Hill in concept and notably less so in terms of practice. It just didn’t do it for me. It didn’t support the boldness, the brashness, or the brazeness that I envisioned in my Western stories. So I put it away. So much so, that I actually missed Deadlands (thinking it was a World of Darkness spinoff…I misjudged it at the cover-level). I may have to delve into that. Not long ago, I’ve acquired GURPS Old West and Western HERO. I think Deadlands needs to enter my possession. It may be time to give Western play another try….perhaps as a one-off session.
For now, I’ve been playing the Outlaws with my brother….now that’s a computer game that may warrant its own post.