Spirit of '77 is a game from Monkeyfun Studios released in 2015 that uses the Powered by the Apocalypse Engine and is, in the creator's words, "the best parts of a bad decade" put into a roleplaying game. It contains many Shout-Outs to 1970's TV, film, and music, along with a healthy tip of the pimp hat to the Exploitation Film genre. A supplement book, Wide World of '77, contains three pre-made adventures and more details on the game setting.
Hey, cats! It's The '70s! 1977 to be specific, or at least an altered version where Richard Nixon beat the Watergate rap by throwing several of his own cronies under the bus. (The disappearance of a couple of pesky news reporters looking into the affair was probably just a coincidence.) He's served two full terms as president, though not without further controversy when he used zombies to end the Vietnam War. Now he's Secretary of State under newly elected president Gerald Ford, who easily won the 1976 election against a peanut farmer from Georgia.
In other news, mysterious X-Tech has revolutionized the world, but also has created frightening side effects that have caused the Cold War to heat up again. The Glam Movement, which may or may not be directly influenced by honest-to-God alien contact, is also becoming a major cultural influence, especially since music can now be channeled and used as a weapon.
And you? You can get down on the action by embracing an action-filled role to adapt to the crazy, super groovy world around you, calling on the tropes, roles, and stories frequently seen in Seventies' fads and pop culture. Can you dig it?
Each character consists of three modifiers, a "role" which describes your character's occupation or place in society, a "story" which describes their special abilities or how they get things done, and a "buzz" that provides your character's motivation. All three contribute skills, traits, and equipment to the complete character. You will also have a "hook" to other characters in your group that details why you'd hang around those weirdos in the first place.
Spirit of '77 contains examples of:
- City with No Name: The setting of the game, The City is a place perfect for all of the action to take place, as it's catered to the genres and tropes of the 70's.
- Cool Car: Automatically granted to any one who takes the Good Ol' Boy role. You can also take a Cool Bike or Cool Truck.
- For Science!: The reason X-Tech exists in the game. How does it work? Who cares...it's far out!
- Game Master: Known as the DJ in Spirit of '77.
- Gang Banger: The Bopper role, either in the exploitation style or more akin to The Warriors. Gangs can also be taken as allies.
- Glam Rock: One of the available story types to apply to your character. Glam characters embody both beauty and mystery.
- Good Ol' Boy: One of the roles available, an obvious call to The Dukes of Hazzard, but can also extend to Convoy-type truckers and Evel Knievel-type daredevils.
- Honey Trap: The Honeypot story type, which gives characters the skills using charisma and looks to get things done.
- The Man: This being a game about the 70's, all characters have a common goal of sticking it to him.
- Martial Arts Movie: The obvious influence of the Kung Fu story type, particularly calling on the influence of Bruce Lee.
- Private Detective: One of the roles which takes influence from several 1970's TV series and exploitation films.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: One of the roles available, which allows them to pull on their military training to get things done.
- Soul Brotha: In the form of the story type "One Bad Mother." No points for guessing who they're supposed to evoke.
- The Six Stats: Averted: the classic types, now with funky 70's names, that are included are Strength = Might, Dexterity = Hustle, Charisma = Smooth, and Intelligence = Brains. The fifth and final stat is "Soul", which measures a character's spiritual strength, creativity, and luck.
- We Can Rebuild Him: The X-Tech role, in the vein of The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman, gives the character cybernetic enhancements to use.