Tabletop game enthusiast Mark Plemmons has announced a crowdfund for MASHED, an RPG game where you play as a medical surgeon during the Korean War. And no, despite what you’re thinking, Alan Alda won’t be on the box.
For those who never knew, MASH stands for Mobile Army Surgical Hospital, and it really existed. It was the name of the unit that treated fallen soldiers in a string of tents during the Korean War. It’s also now copyrighted as the name of an iconic sitcom based on the real MASH unit (and the movie that came before it). Hence we’ll be referring to this game as “MASHED.”
MASHED is a tabletop roleplaying game that explores the value of human life and the stresses that war imposes on the people who live through it—but it’s also about relationships. And courage. And laughter. And love. Although your characters spend long hours performing surgery, MASHED compresses these into short events to focus on the most dramatic moments. Most of the game actually occurs outside of the operating tent, at times when the flow of casualties has ebbed. Here you may fall in or out of love, fight the orders of ineffective top brass, set up pranks, help your South Korean allies, pick fights, seduce your way through the unit, pull rank, and much more. Can you find ways to relieve the mental stresses brought on by the war, and make it home with your sanity intact?
Will anyone really choose to play as a character who wasn’t on the show? Maybe some will play it legitimately, but there’s guaranteed to be at least one Hawkeye or Klinger in the bunch no matter what.
The game blew past its initial goal days ago and is definitely coming out. Backers will get the game book, minibooks for 7 character types, a surgical sheet and a calendar that spans 1950 through 1953, plus DM tools and a map. The book in particular contains a lot of facts about the Korean War and MASH in particular. MASHED still has 25 days to go, so pledge if you’re interested.