Freak High (2005)

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Publisher: Luchacabra
Year: 2005
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In Freak High, a rules-light RPG, the players have characters that are teenagers with super powers. Most of society is afraid of these teenagers and their abilities (and occasional physical mutations), and they have been co-located into special schools, away from population centers. The game transpires in Mountain High which, super powers aside, is much like any high school in America.

Characters have four major categories of Traits: Cliques, Comments, Angst, and Drama. Cliques are just like typical high school cliques and will define the social crowd the player likes to hang out with. Comments are narrative tags that help clarify the character's standing within the Clique, and one of the Comments will designate a "Power" which is the character's special ability or mutation. Angst summarizes the character's dramatic issues at the moment--"Acting on Angst in immature and petty ways is the central mechanic of the game." Drama is a resource through which characters can maximize their success.

Example Cliques are given: Jocks, Rebels, Princesses, Brains, and Basketcases. Each will have positive and negative comments. For example, Princesses may have these comments "Popular", "Natural Leader", "Manipulative", and "Emotionally Fragile."

Angst should be phrased in such a way as to introduce a problem or conflict which will provide the story seed for a game session. For example, "I can't let anyone know that my family is really poor."

Powers should be things like super strength or telepathy, but preferably will include some type of emotional investment. The game does not include lengthy lists of powers--players should design their own using the three parameters provided in the rules--simplicity, impermanent, and not cosmic.

When conflict occurs, it can be built with narrative until a power is used. Then a die roll will determine the outcome. Drama points can be spent to enlarge the dice pool to provide better outcomes. The character may also use narrative to make the conflict more significant which may also increase the dice pool.

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