Ars Magica Review
Time is something the medieval mages of Ars Magica have in plenty. They have no need of wealth or work. A specialist class of peasantry, called Grogs, cater for their basic needs. Their magic can bend time and potions extend their lifespans to hundreds of years. Ironic, then, that Ars Magica is one of the most time-consuming role-playing games around. It also happens to be one of the best.
I'm not sure we're here yet. I think we're still at the Talisman/Pokemon Master Trainer level and any first stop into full on role-playing still sounds like it'll be with that Lone Wolf Adventure game.
I have been thinking frequently of all the role-playing I did in the 80s and 90s and I would no doubt jump into an Ars Magica game this instant if I knew someone running it.
Ars Magica always seemed like the Velvet Underground of rpgs. I have role-played with a lot of people over the years, but don't know anybody who ever played Ars Magica. And yet it seems very influential with rpg game designers.
I don't remember if it's in the original rules, but the Grogs could be played by any player and that resulted in some very interesting and fleshed-out characters while sometimes feeling like giving a friends' ferrari a spin.
Ars is a fantastic game in scope and vision. I've never played it but I came close. Too many games, too little time. As previously mentioned, it requires a group that is 100% committed.