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Mayfair Games remembered

Jerry Stratton, October 18, 2014

photo for Mayfair Games remembered

A neon sign of +2 against nostalgia

I was recently in Richmond, Virginia, and, wandering up Cary Street looking for record stores and bookstores, ran across a game store called One Eyed Jacques. They are mostly board games and card games, but apparently at one time they specialized in RPGs. I’m guessing this from the non-lit Mayfair Games neon light in their display window.1

I have a few Mayfair game books from back in the day, and picked up a few more during my eBay spree several years ago. I played in one of their Role-Aids adventures, about a Clockwork Mage, back in college. It was a wacky adventure involving magical clockwork androids and the missing wizard who created them.

They made their own games, too, however, and were especially known for their Chill horror role-playing game and for the DC Heroes superhero role-playing game licensed from DC. DC Heroes was a bit of mathematical genius, where all numbers were interchangeable and within any scale +1 meant twice as big, bad, or whatever. This allowed relatively similar numbers to model everyone from Superman to Robin.

But it also meant the numbers across measurements could be compared: a 7 strength could throw a 5 truck for a distance of 2. A 5 speed would take 2 units of time to go a distance of 3, and so forth. It was an impressive mechanic.

  1. It may be that the current incarnation of Mayfair Games distributes neon paraphenalia, but that sign looks pretty old.

  1. <- New Helter Skelter
  2. Tabletop gamergate ->