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All Systems Critical • 2019 rpg finalist

David Brunell-Brutman •

Alarms wail. Red lights flash. Your cockpit fills with smoke. You combined into a giant robot, but it wasn't enough - the enemy's winning. You can make one last push.

Shuffle a deck of cards. Everyone draws a card.

You're a...

Clubs: Bold & reckless...
Diamonds: Logical & cold...
Hearts: Empathetic & protective...
Spades: Fun-loving & careless...

A: Ace.
2-3: Heavy.
4-5: Newbie.
6-7: Scout.
8-9: Techie.
10-J: 2nd-in-command.
Q-K: Leader.

Same role? Redraw.


Starting with whoever drew the highest number & going clockwise, introduce yourself. What are you doing, thinking, feeling?

Go around again, once for each Flashback. Each person picks a scene partner, then draws. Play the Flashback with your scene partner. Others can join as you go.

*1st Flashback: What happened when your squad first formed?
Red card: You love your scene partner.
Black card: You dislike them.

*2nd Flashback: What happened shortly before this fight?
Red card: You shared a vulnerable moment.
Black card: You had a falling out.

Count the drawn cards.
More red: Your squad comes back and wins.
More black: Your squad is defeated.
How does each person influence the outcome?

Author Comments

This game was inspired by Voltron, Power Rangers, & the Firefly episode “Out of Gas”. If you like it, check out Teens with Attitude, a bigger RPG that lets you explore the relationships amongst a team of teenage mech pilots (amongst other things). Http://

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