Thursday, December 14, 2017

MASHed: much better than I expected... and maybe too real

I hadn’t planned on reading MASHed. Because, well, I assumed it was based on the TV show. And I really liked the TV show when it was first being aired (and would probably still like it now) but I’m not interested in playing a game based on it.

However, what I discovered when I started looking at MASHed was that it was focused on being a historical recreation. Mind you, I don’t think it would have been developed without the tv show. I mean, I don’t know if I’d have any clue that MASH units even existed without the show.

So... this is a game that has a focus on a real historical event, a war that was recent enough that people who experienced it are still around to remember it. And it doesn’t focus on combat but what happens after the combat is over... at least for the folks who have to go under the knife.

I’ll be honest. MASHed has some of the highest bleed potential I have seen in an RPG. (Bleed: when people start getting feels from the game) The only game I have looked at that is more extreme is the Grey Ranks, which is listed as an inspiration. And I think MASHed might be more extreme for American audiences since it is easier for us to relate to. I know I’m being super self-centered but MASHed is about Americans. 

And I’m now curious about Korean MASH units. Was there something about that war (The front moving back and forth a lot? Having a larger number of civilian doctors? Was there a larger number?) that made its medical units unusual? Or is it just that Richard Hooker wrote a popular book?

(My son’s grandpa (hi dad!) has made the argument helicopters made rapid transportation easier than WW II. And Vietnam was much more defuse and probably had faster helicopters. But neither of us know much details about those wars so those are just guesses)

So I went from having no interest in MASHed and only owning it thanks to Bundle or Holding to actively reading it and cross referencing parts of it. That said, I don’t know if I’d _play_ MASHed. To play it without trivializing the subject might be too traumatic.

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