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Most Innovative Game

This Sub-Award is awarded to the game that stretches the RPG experience in new ways. It may be a particular innovative mechanic that has never been used in other games (or never been used as well as previous games), or it changes the dynamics of a regular game group (the standard 3-6 players and one gamemaster). Or, it might even turn the concept of "RPG" on its ear. Innovation and exploration is what this Sub-Award honors.

The Finalists and Selected Peer Feedback

My Life With Master
My Life With Master is a major innovation in game design. It creates tightly-packed situations loaded with horror, humor, and above all humanity. The game sheds so many assumptions about what RPGs are "like," and the result is a stunningly wonderful and refreshing game.

The game matches the genre perfectly. All mechanics are fine-tuned narrative tools for the GM and players alike and it introduces the "every character plays through a separate, parallel storyline" type of game in a way that works.

Squint hard at this game, and you'll see your paradigms shift.

Orbit Orbit is off the hook and over the top. It's a maddening tome of pop culture, exploding in every direction in a creative cataclysm.

I like the fiction, the artwork, and the style. It looks like it'd be fun to play and has a good sense of humor without being a completely dedicated humor system.

Orbit's GONZO ruleset that includes among other things a "choose to fail" narrative option that Clinton Nixon remarked as being a total original.

Tooth And Claw Finally - COMPLETE anthropomorphic roleplaying, not just furry adventures.

Tooth And Claw
Finally - COMPLETE anthropomorphic roleplaying, not just furry adventures.
Hell who has ever written a game about being a dinosaur

The Valedictorian's Death
No feedback currently available for this category.

Wushu is a simple yet effective system at emulating wuxia-style RPGs, and its extrapolation into other genres is entertaining.

Seamless integration of story, and mechanics.

The Runners Up

3rd Place, with 13 Points
2nd Place, with 14Points

And the Winner, with 108Points, is...

My Life With Master
My Life with Master presents a fresh new idea that somehow manages to work. The system is masterfully woven into the genre, which can only help make for a fantastic game. Besides, how can you argue with a game that features Self Loathing.

Further Feedback:

My Life With Master
It's a great game that breaks some of the basic tenets of most RPGs but still provides a compelling play experience.

MLWM breaks the mold with interesting and "new" game design, refusing to conform to industry standard norms (even in the indie scene)

MLWM takes the RPG form and makes it do things it never has before.

I've heard of some of the methods in the other games, and while they're innovative, the stuff My Life With Master does is definitely at the bleeding edge.

The game pushed me to think of RPGs in a different way.

The influence of My Life With Master is astounding. The new Paranoia game draws on it, and dozens of other games that came after it. Everyone in the industry has sat up and taken notice of this game. This is a no-brainer. Plus, it's a blast to play.

There's no contest. Paul's game was one of the best releases of 2003, period.

Do you even need to ask that question? MLwM lets you play the MINION of an EVIL VILLAIN. A MINION. How cool is that? How cool is this game? Very.

allen sugerbaker and ken hite had very nice things to say about it and it is a very catchy looking game.

MLWM is way ahead of any other game, indie or not, in terms of innovation. The mechanics bring out the flavour of the genre and produce narrative results in a way never before achieved.

It kicked theme-driven role-playing up a notch. From now on, this will be the metric by which other tightly focused theme-driven games will be judged.

It's the most purely literary rpg I've seen in some time, and dazzlingly clever at what it does.

Focuses on shared creative reinforcement among members of the group - no matter what the characters do, the real people are 100% committed.

MLWM is the 800 pound gorilla, honestly. One needs to find reasons not to vote for it. In this case, the only one that I feel comes close for innovation is Wushu, and that's a bit less clean in practice.

MLWM wasn't just innovatively conceived, it was innovatively crafted. It was like nothing else, but it was also very good.

My Life With Master takes the word "Innovative" and spanks its ass while making it call him "daddy".