Wendy's Presents: Feast of Legends, a Fast Food Fantasy Tabletop RPG
October 3, 2019 11:30 AM   Subscribe

Feast of Legends: You are adventurers in the realm of Beef ’s Keep, where the nations have been splintered over major disagreements in how to treat the realm’s people. Creepingvale and the United Clown Nations have led their people into a collective darkness known as The Deep Freeze. While the world currently feels like a cold and desolate place, you reside in the one nation that remains a true beacon of hope: Freshtovia. (And yes, you do get buffs from eating Wendy's at the gaming table.)
posted by robocop is bleeding (58 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
 
the rulebook is 97 pages long
we did it fellow nerds
we made it
mainstream
or should i say
beefstream
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:31 AM on October 3, 2019 [7 favorites]


I like to imagine whoever they paid to do this was just pleased as punch to be doing this as a gig.
posted by aubilenon at 11:43 AM on October 3, 2019 [14 favorites]


Bonus: they include online dice if you don't have your own. Sure, there are sites that allow you to roll a set of six-sided dice, complete with sound effects, but they don't have d4 through d20!

Oh, Wizards of the Coast has a better virtual dice page. That's solid.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:44 AM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


"Creepingvale": Points for the reference to Burger King's most notable entry into game-based advertisement, Sneak King. (Previously)

(Still boycotting Wendy's, though.)
posted by asperity at 11:46 AM on October 3, 2019 [3 favorites]


2019: KFC Dating Simulator
2019: Wendy's Feast of Legends Table Top RPG
2021: Forknife: Burger King Inspired Battle Royale
2032: Red Lobster Redemption 2: Seafood Based Western Action Adventure Game

Welcome to the future of food-based marketing video games. Irony no longer exists. This is hell.
posted by Fizz at 11:47 AM on October 3, 2019 [37 favorites]


Inspiration?
posted by hal9k at 11:47 AM on October 3, 2019


Bonus: they include online dice if you don't have your own.

Fun fact: Google has a built-in dice roller too. If you enter the number of dice you want to roll in the search bar it will automatically roll them for you.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 11:50 AM on October 3, 2019 [11 favorites]


If this were designed by Monte Cook, it would be eponysterical.
posted by jozxyqk at 11:56 AM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


Weird's the Beef.
posted by chavenet at 12:01 PM on October 3, 2019 [3 favorites]


I like to imagine whoever they paid to do this was just pleased as punch to be doing this as a gig.

I imagine they would have been even more pleased if they'd been given credit for their great work. It's really annoying that in such a great book the only creator credits I see are a single art credit and one cartographer credit hidden in the art pages near the back.
posted by Inkslinger at 12:03 PM on October 3, 2019 [10 favorites]


Welcome to the future of food-based marketing video games. Irony no longer exists.

I think the sheer bizarreness of this has confused you. This is a pen and paper RPG...from Wendy's. Admittedly, it's not a design that took anyone very long, but it's still, I suspect, unlikely to become a trend.
posted by howfar at 12:03 PM on October 3, 2019 [1 favorite]




I imagine they would have been even more pleased if they'd been given credit for their great work.

I am Frosty Spartacus!
posted by Etrigan at 12:06 PM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


2021: Forknife: Burger King Inspired Battle Royale

1998: "Mr Pibb: The 3D Interactive Game" FPS distributed on floppy disks at McDonald's. (It was vaguely Doom-like. You killed zombies by burping Mr Pibb at them.)
posted by bassooner at 12:15 PM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


Battle Royale with Cheese
posted by Pastor of Muppets at 12:27 PM on October 3, 2019 [16 favorites]


1993: Cool Spot The video game. Pretty sure The Noid and Chester cheetah had one too.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 12:35 PM on October 3, 2019 [10 favorites]


White Castlevania: Slider of Shadows
posted by dephlogisticated at 12:37 PM on October 3, 2019 [17 favorites]


Sorta tempted to get my gaming group to go camp in a Wendy's to play this.

Mission Accomplished, Marketers?
posted by jrishel at 12:42 PM on October 3, 2019 [3 favorites]


memail me if you are interested in a grimdark one-shot pbp campaign where the players have to hunt down the M.C. Kids, who have become rogue assassins in the style of the Salamanca Cousins, set against the backdrop of a Thirty Years' War-style conflict between the Principality of the Crossed Palms and the Federated States of the Filleted Pullet

I had shit to do today lol
posted by prize bull octorok at 12:48 PM on October 3, 2019 [8 favorites]


2019: KFC Dating Simulator
2019: Wendy's Feast of Legends Table Top RPG
2021: Forknife: Burger King Inspired Battle Royale
2032: Red Lobster Redemption 2: Seafood Based Western Action Adventure Game


2042: McDonaldland Estates: Three- and Four-Bedroom Luxury Homes, Designed for Life...Designed for You.
posted by jquinby at 12:51 PM on October 3, 2019 [5 favorites]


I had thought about crafting a post about this, but am happy to have been beaten to it. Some of the Critical Role folks will be playing this system during CR’s normal time slot tonight at 7pm PST on Twitch. If that time doesn’t work, it will probably be on CR’s YouTube channel on Monday.

Are you a Critical Role fan? Did you know that we talk about it over in FanFare?
posted by booksherpa at 1:26 PM on October 3, 2019 [4 favorites]


I mean, it's no Chex Quest...
posted by Rallon at 1:31 PM on October 3, 2019 [3 favorites]


Are fast casual dining establishments now marketing exclusively to Justin McElroy in order to be featured on Munch Squad?
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 1:41 PM on October 3, 2019 [11 favorites]


Being on Munch Squad is a mixed blessing at best...
posted by booksherpa at 1:43 PM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


"Breaker of fast food chains" feels weirdly on-the-nose for them given how much they've fought to preserve their use of slave labor.

Like, I get that this isn't from the same department, and it's a lighthearted marketing stunt.
but it'd be like Coca-Cola producing a Far Cry/Just Cause mod where there's a mission that winks at breaking up a labor strike at a dissident plant.
posted by CrystalDave at 1:51 PM on October 3, 2019 [7 favorites]


MiltonRandKalman does have a good point that I had not considered: Cool Spot was pretty legit. I am choosing to remain annoyed at this filling the Critical Role timeslot this week, however. It was cute when they themed an adventure around a charity...
posted by jinjo at 1:59 PM on October 3, 2019


Welcome to the future of food-based marketing video games.

I suspect Sonic the Chilidog is already here.
posted by GenjiandProust at 2:00 PM on October 3, 2019 [3 favorites]


Burger King Kid’s Club: Cyberpunk. The kids, now grown and estranged, are forced to reunite after I.Q. goes missing. Word on the street is that he was working blackhat for the Yakuza and got too close to something big. To find him, they’re going to need the help of Kid Vid, who’s gotten one too many implants and is now more wetware than flesh, a digital ghost haunting the mainframes of Neo Tokyo.
posted by dephlogisticated at 2:07 PM on October 3, 2019 [11 favorites]


The nation of Freshtovia has been the lone beacon of hope in the land of Beef’s Keep for decades. However, the Ice Jester and his rogues gallery of frozen fiends threaten Queen Wendy’s reign of prosperity. Prepare your heroes for adventure.

Anybody else read it as Freshtovia was the lone bacon of hope in the land of Beef's Keep?
posted by srboisvert at 2:16 PM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


where is the goose
posted by poffin boffin at 2:57 PM on October 3, 2019 [5 favorites]


There is some monster out there making a Hamburglar hack for the goose game. WHEN WILL YOU ROBBLE?
posted by Sauce Trough at 3:10 PM on October 3, 2019 [1 favorite]


"Creepingvale": Points for the reference to Burger King's most notable entry into game-based advertisement, Sneak King.

Produced by your friend and mine, Steve Bannon.
posted by kafziel at 3:58 PM on October 3, 2019


I am choosing to remain annoyed at this filling the Critical Role timeslot this week

They would have been dark otherwise - Travis and Laura are at NYCC and so there was no regular episode scheduled for today.
posted by booksherpa at 6:16 PM on October 3, 2019


You know, it's somehow not quite as on brand as Har Mar Superstar doing a set at the Wendy's on Lake Street, but I accept it. I'm not saying I like it, but I accept that there are some good jokes in here (liking the Quality of our Recipe trademark).

Just making sure everyone saw the character sheet link with pregen characters.

Also, uh. Wendy's has a twitch channel?
posted by dinty_moore at 6:56 PM on October 3, 2019


We had Avoid the Noid for PC, which was neigh-impossible. Making it past the first screen was cause for celebration.
posted by ckape at 7:01 PM on October 3, 2019 [1 favorite]


I feel like we all missed the point where we roll multiple d4s for stats.

Is Wendy's trying to maim us? There is a direct connection between the number of d4s you own and horrible foot injuries. NEW WENDY'S DELIVERY SERVICE CONFIRMED.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 7:25 PM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


Fun fact: Google has a built-in dice roller too. If you enter the number of dice you want to roll in the search bar it will automatically roll them for you.

Sadly, Siri does not appear to have a die roller built in. She parsed, "Hey, Siri, roll 2D6" perfectly, but didn't know what to do with it. I was a little surprised.
posted by Naberius at 7:30 PM on October 3, 2019 [1 favorite]


The Feast of Legends designers revealed! (I know I was looking for this info)
posted by dinty_moore at 8:39 PM on October 3, 2019 [4 favorites]


They would have been dark otherwise - Travis and Laura are at NYCC and so there was no regular episode scheduled for today.

That would have been better.
posted by kafziel at 8:46 PM on October 3, 2019 [1 favorite]


That would have been better.

I'm of mixed mind. I'm kind of disturbed by the utter sellout this is while enjoying the silly ridiculousness of folks I really enjoy playing this nonsense. If nothing else, reading some of the comments in various CR discussion places alerted me to Wendy's crap behavior, so there's that. I won't be eating any more Wendy's, and they had been my fast food of choice.

I wonder if Wendy's contacted them and they said "Wait.. you want us to WHAT? For how much??" and just said yes because they're still kinda in the mindset of "we're nerdy-ass voice actors who play D&D and a huge national corporation wants to sponsor us to play a game, how can we say no?"

I will say that I feel like Matt is 90% playing the "character" of pretending to be annoyed by Sam that he plays after the D&D Beyond ads each week, but 10% "what in the actual fuck have we done?!"
posted by booksherpa at 9:17 PM on October 3, 2019 [2 favorites]


1988's Castle Greyhawk - Too Many Cooks!
posted by Nanukthedog at 4:30 AM on October 4, 2019 [4 favorites]


Just in case you thought this was just an ad. No. There is for serious real-ass anti union, anti-regulatory propaganda in this thing. (long Twitter thread deep-dive review, both of the game and the politics around it)
posted by Etrigan at 6:20 AM on October 4, 2019 [7 favorites]


I'm annoyed by the lack of attribution - even with commercials, it's customary to name the ad agency for their work. But a lot of what that thread is describing is what happens when you mindlessly play with fantasy D&D tropes and don't put a lot of thought into who you're making a killable body or how hereditary monarchies with cults of personality are, you know, bad. That's not to say that it makes the game any better, but I'm not sure if I'd expect anything else from a fast food chain or ad agency.

The mcdonalds is the UN and the UN is bad is fucking gross, though.
posted by dinty_moore at 8:05 AM on October 4, 2019


Bob Chapman (MovieBob) just did a great explanation of propaganda in movies - and the insidious and invisible nature of it during our consumption. Just because Wendy's releases a table top rpg - doesn't mean that they altruistically just doing a pop culture thing. They are driving their own interests subtly, leveraging a game to indoctrinate their customers - the unions are the villain in this. People will play this with irony but the damage is done - you are walked slightly to the right, being asked to fight against unions and for... wendy's??? This is is the exact vehicle that converts minds - maybe only a niche few, but this is a subtle permanent thing.

Alternatively, if you want engage with culture which is insidiously pro-union and supports strip mining - Deep Rock Galactic just added the ability to join a union. Unfortunately, there is not a RPG associated with DRG, but there are beer and barrels - which should act as common denominators for both.
posted by Nanukthedog at 8:25 AM on October 4, 2019 [2 favorites]


Not that I disagree with your point in general, but the unions are not the main enemies in this (calling it union busting is kind of a stretch, other than it propping up Wendy's, which is anti-union). The monsters are all Mcdonalds mascots, freezerburn, and other fast food. There's one pot shot at the UN, which somehow conflates it with McDonalds.

Also, if there's any virtue in this, it's that there's nothing subtle about the indoctrination. This feels different from the brands pretending that they're my friends on twitter and more like early 90's product placement video games.
posted by dinty_moore at 8:42 AM on October 4, 2019 [3 favorites]


we did it fellow nerds
we made it
mainstream


yay we won now we're also neoliberal corporate sellouts

yaaaaaaaaaayyy...
posted by GuyZero at 10:29 AM on October 4, 2019 [2 favorites]


Also that one twitter thread taking the game apart mentions there's no authorial credit, which is bad if you're designing a real game, but I think it's standard in the corporate advertising world. This was absolutely pitched by an agency who did some spec work and then get approval to take it all the way. But there's no authorship on this for the same reason there's no artists's signature on that piece of paper they put on your tray at Wendys.
posted by GuyZero at 10:39 AM on October 4, 2019 [2 favorites]


But there's no authorship on this for the same reason there's no artists's signature on that piece of paper they put on your tray at Wendys.

But the artists' names are on this: Illustrations by Alex Lopez, Maps by Collin Fogel
posted by Etrigan at 10:53 AM on October 4, 2019


My guess is that Alex Lopez and Collin Fogel didn't work for the ad agency, while all of the writers did. I'd honestly have less of an issue with the lack of attribution if they'd mentioned the ad agency or development company behind it - which is pretty common for commercial work. The KFC game is done by Psyop, for example. If you look up any popular commercial, you can probably find the agency. But other than that tweet, there wasn't really mention of who wrote it anywhere. (Ars Technica, PC Gamer, Forbes). There's a small Wizards of the Coast-esque trademark that says Quality is our Recipe(tm), but that's it.
posted by dinty_moore at 11:02 AM on October 4, 2019


Sadly, Siri does not appear to have a die roller built in. She parsed, "Hey, Siri, roll 2D6" perfectly, but didn't know what to do with it. I was a little surprised.

I'm just surprised Siri didn't say "MOM! Jason and his friends are in the basement worshipping the devil again!" and then blow a bubble gum bubble.
posted by srboisvert at 11:23 AM on October 4, 2019


Worth noting: After their fans alerted them to Wendy’s bad practices, the Critical Role team has donated their profits to Farmworker Justice.

CR tweet on the donation

Matt Mercer’s comment
posted by a device for making your enemy change his mind at 2:12 PM on October 4, 2019 [6 favorites]


Mercer's comment is a little overwrought to me, but I think he gets it. One one hand I don't begrudge them doing a sponsored episode because everybody has rent to pay. On the other hand, these big corp sponsorships are all blood money if you look deep enough and it's never going to mesh well with CR's very fan-driven roots. Then again, no one complains when they get paid to do voice acting gigs by big studios with shitty labour practices so I'm not sure why getting paid by Wendy's is any worse. Very few people have good paying jobs where the money shows up unsullied by bad actors.
posted by GuyZero at 2:22 PM on October 4, 2019


The whole internet loves Milkshake Frosty® Duck Dragon, a lovely duck dragon that drinks milkshakes Frosty®s! *5 seconds later* We regret to inform you the duck dragon is racist anti-union.
posted by tonycpsu at 4:24 PM on October 4, 2019 [4 favorites]


I feel bad for the podcast guys. I guess they didn't do their due diligence? Or was their mistake partnering with any brand? I read that whole teardown thread ready to be convinced but it seems like it just wasn't to that person's taste and they think the author should be credited. I dunno is that it?
posted by bleep at 8:12 PM on October 4, 2019


1983: Chase the Chuck Wagon (Atari 2600/Purina)
posted by box at 6:44 AM on October 5, 2019 [1 favorite]


Then again, no one complains when they get paid to do voice acting gigs by big studios with shitty labour practices so I'm not sure why getting paid by Wendy's is any worse. Very few people have good paying jobs where the money shows up unsullied by bad actors.

The fan was response was a bit much, imo, but it does feel like there's a difference between getting paid by Wendy's, and using the stream to do an hours-long advertisement for Wendy's.
posted by Emily's Fist at 9:54 AM on October 5, 2019


In terms of CR and Matt Mercer, they might have not realized how it would play out until they actually did it. When they'd announced that they were doing a Wendy's sponsored one-shot, I defended them along the lines GuyZero was talking about - everybody's got to eat, they've had small sponsors for years now, they're actors who do commercials along with some questionable video games, ect. It wasn't clear that it was going to be with Wendy's RPG system at that point, but even when it was, it didn't lose me - I was kind of excited to see it playtested. It wasn't until I saw it being played out live that it really started to feel a little too much like a full-on advertisement instead of product placement or playing a branded game. Even watching a let's play of a hypothetical video game would have felt different, I think - there's more separation between the video game's players and the player character.
posted by dinty_moore at 10:19 AM on October 5, 2019 [1 favorite]


Wendy's is also kind of categorically worse than most other food placements, given the whole literal slavery thing.
posted by kafziel at 1:34 PM on October 7, 2019


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