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Deathmatch Island

 Author: Tim Denee  Category: horror, survival  Publisher: Evil Hat Productions  Game System: Paragon

It uses the Paragon system from the AGON roleplaying game, by John Harper and Sean Nittner. Instead of portraying ancient greek heroes, the players take the role of ordinary people with a hazy memory of their life before the game. Instead of competing for glory, you compete for followers. Instead of reciting your epic deeds, you give a confessional to the camera (but is there really a camera? What is all of this, actually?). Instead of pleasing the gods, you face each other at the end and ask: will we turn on each other until one winner remains, or can we work together to break the whole system?

A game about exploring strange islands; wearing matching tracksuits; dodging gunshots as you scavenge weapons and gear from an abandoned fishing village; wrestling with another competitor on a huge climbing frame with explosive landmines buried below; having flashbacks to a surprising past that has serious ramifications on the present; crashing through a chainlink fence in a stolen production van to investigate a restricted office compound; leaping over a volcano’s caldera on a motorcycle to get to the gift-wrapped loot crate before the police officer’s team does; approaching The Sphere and learning that you’ve done this all before.

This is a game with a tightly-focused premise and presentation, and whether you want to discover eerie secrets or compete to survive, you’ll find something here to enjoy. It’s about trust and teamwork and capitalism and solidarity and a big weird conspiracy.

Play to win.