OngoingWorlds blog

News & articles about play-by-post games, for roleplayers & writers


Bad TV shows for RPGS

broken old tv

My last article was for TV shows that I thought would make good RPGs or PBP games. This time, it’s shows that ,
if it was up to me and you tried to make these into a RPG or PBP game, i would kick you hard in the soft bits, travel back in time and watch myself kick you in the soft bits… then kick you again.

So here they are, in no particular order.

1 – Keeping up with the Kardashians

If you have to ask why, then please remove yourself from this planet immediately.

2 – Antiques Roadshow

First off, I have to say I actually like this show. For those who don’t now what it is, its a BBC show where people bring along their old family antiques and are given a rough valuation for insurance or sales purposes. There are some interesting stories behind some of the items. But as an RPG campaign? I can’t even begin to think how this work in a PBP game.

3 – The Teletubbies

The first time I saw the Tellytubbies, I was on some rather heavy duty pain & other medication for my kidneys and was browsing through the TV channels and thought I was having a mental breakdown and starting to hallucinate. Some would say, and I would agree, that most toddler/children shows are written by people who have taken some very “interesting” substances. You could visit these places in your games but a full rpg or game based on these shows?

4 – Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, Toddlers & Tiaras , etc

Another “reality” tv show. The phrase “nuke the site from orbit – it’s the only way to be sure” springs to mind. In fact most so-called reality TV shows like this that make you feel like your IQ has dropped after watching it should be shot into the sun. This show is basically child abuse and the parents should be slapped hard for how they treat their children.

5 – The Weakest Link & Other quiz shows

I have a love-hate relationship with quiz shows in general. I find watching them reminds me of both how smart and how stupid the human race can be , within seconds of each other. Sadly though it seems to be increasingly more of the latter stupidity. I can forgive the odd mistake, after all you are on TV and thousands on thousands of people are sitting there, judging you, mocking you for your mistakes. How can that translate to a PBP?

I would honestly not be upset if all quiz shows went off the air.

Except Countdown…that can stay..but only when Richard Whitely and Carol Vorderman was on it. And Blockbusters.

6 – Blind Date/the Batchleor (any “dating” show)

Now I will admit, their is potential for a one off story in this concept. But generally, the types of characters you find of these shows (in my experiences at least) tend to be vain, superficial and the sort of people who are not on the show to find a partner but to basically get seen or noticed. You know the type, the sort of people who if you met elsewhere you would be thinking about how to kill them and dispose of the body. Yes there are, as in anything, exceptions to this.

7 – Weather Reports

Not so much a show, but a genre. Every country has them. A person stands in front of a screen pointing out weather patterns and telling you of the forecast for the coming days. Some would argue this is part of the news and I would agree to a point. Now don’t get me wrong, i think that weather reporting is a valuable and worthwhile service, but I can’t see anyway it would make a good RPG/PBP game.

8 – “Family” Comedy shows

You know the type. Bumbling dad, nagging mother, at least two children (one female, one male – one surely and rude the other nerdy and smart and annoying). Some neighbour who is amusing or a pain, in-laws who just turn up etc, etc. and the fake laugh track. Individually, these shows can be good sometimes, but as a genre, come on, think of something new! A campaign or game based around these types of shows would be very predictable and I would wager not last long, if it managed to get started at all.

9 – Changing Rooms/DIY shows

This also falls into the type of show I call a guilty pleasure. Yes i like watching how people do up their homes, take an old room and make it something impressive. Now try to think about how this would translate to a RPG. “Roll a d20. you got 12. That means the paint has dried and you can start work on laying the carpeting. You got a 1? The hammer went flying out your hand and hit the cat”.. Hmm now I think about it might work as a silly rpg one off, but a PBP game..can’t see that happening.

10 – Animal Hospital type shows

Any show that shows animals in hospital getting apparently better then ripping your heart out later as they tell you Mr fluffball died after chocking on his catnip mouse will not be good for a rpg or PBP in my opinion. Great now I just remembered about my first pet dying..well done Chris, you just made yourself upset…who is cutting those onions?

Now I am sure there are plenty more TV shows out there that could make this list, so put your thoughts and suggestions in the comments.

  • Joe Jordan

    Please tell me nobody has done a keeping up with the kardassians sim….

    • Mobius

      If they have i will inact my clause about time traveling ass-kicking

      • Jaxx

        To be honest the only legitimate sim I could see with that would be in the “adult” section in a 18 plus web site.

  • Jade

    Red Dwarf! I mean, it’s a show about four blokes in space! What looser would do a sim about that!


    • Some very cool losers πŸ™‚

      • Jaxx

        She says that like its a bad thing. πŸ˜‰

  • Charles Star

    I love this article. Absolutely hilarious. Bravo, Chris!

    • Mobius

      Cheers πŸ™‚

  • Mr.Bromin

    Actually you could make a pretty good sim out of a weather report, just by extending it to people running a weather channel. Get that character drama going strong

    • I think you should accept this challenge. I expect to see a new game called “Channel 4 weather team” about a calamitous group of weather reporters!

      • Mrxanadu

        ….that live under the reign of the omnipotent Sentient Cloud, and are forced to provide accurate and on-time weather reports, lest they anger the Sentient Cloud and have their flesh melted off. All hail the sentient cloud.

    • Mobius

      True, but then it wouldn’t be about the weather report, but about the channel

    • Jaxx

      That sounds like Anchor man with more emphasis on the weather.

    • Silent Hunter

      Well, Aaron Sorkin got two TV shows out of similar ideas.

  • Tiberius Creations

    Wait what if it’s something like “The Truman Show” Where Jim Carrey slowly found out he was in a family sitcom

    • I’ve heard many times people wanted to do that sort of plot. But once you do the big reveal there’s not much exciting stuff that comes after

      • Jaxx

        It also limits outside participants