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Villains and Vigilantes

Entry updated 20 August 2012. Tagged: Game.

Role Playing Game (1979). Fantasy Games Unlimited (FGU). Designed by Jeff Dee, Jack Herman.

Villains and Vigilantes was the most popular of the early Superhero themed RPGs, despite its inclusion of several design features that now seem questionable. Notably, characters are assigned a random assortment of Superpowers, making it difficult for players to create a compelling rationale for their abilities, and players' everyday selves become the "secret identities" of their Superhero personas. The tone of the game is also very combat-oriented, reflecting its influences in 1960s Comics. While the second edition (1982 FGU) designed by Jeff Dee, Jack Herman improves the mechanics significantly, these problems remain. Legal disputes between the designers and Fantasy Games Unlimited led to the release of what is essentially the third edition under a different name: Living Legends (1999 Unigames) designed by Jeff Dee, Jack Herman. An official third edition was released by Monkey House Games in 2010.

Related works: Villains and Vigilantes (1986-1987) is a four-issue Comics series based on the events of the introductory adventure Crisis at Crusader Citadel (1982 FGU) designed by Jeff Dee, Jack Herman. The series was published by Eclipse Comics and written by Jack Herman. [NT]

see also: Golden Heroes.

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