Wow...contemplating this question has made me sad. Why'd you do that RPGaDay? Why you wanna go and make me sad.
The perfect game, in a very literal sense, is impossible. It is made even more so by several factors:
- Some of the greatest players I've ever known are no longer with us.
- Others simply don't have the time to commit to a regular gaming schedule of any kind.
- A lot of the gamers I know now just don't play in my preferred style.
- I feel I am more 'at odds' with rule systems these days. It's harder to find one I like.
When my longest running D&D campaign - the first Aerth / Winghorn Guard game - ended, I voiced my concern that I would never again have a game that good. Essentially I feared that at 16-17 years old I was done. I'd run the best campaign I was ever going to run.
My good friend Richard Krinsky (shout out to Rich!) said, "You will never run your BEST campaign if you keep running games, because you learn from each one and improve the next." Pretty wise words for life in general but I find myself thinking about this a lot lately. Was he wrong? Few games I've GMed over the past five years or so come close to rivaling my best work.
That's not universally true. There are some I am quite proud of and I feel could stand on the same stage as some of my more epic games of yore; Yellow Sun, our Red Dwarf setting campaign was nearly perfect. My Original Series Era Star Trek Adventures campaign 'Star Trek: Prosperity' has been a lot of fun with some very memorable moments. The latter is also my longest ongoing campaign to date, clocking in at over 6 years of real time.
The 'Perfect Game' though...
It would be Science Fiction, preferably along the lines of Star Trek or The Orville.
It would feature a sizable group, say 7-9 players.
It would be played either twice a month or weekly but I'd settle for once a month.
Sessions would be at least 6 hours.
It would be a combination 'Adventure of the Week' and reoccurring subplots or story arcs.
It would be Character driven, Plot Focused, and have a good deal of World Building.
So there you have it, the perfect game. What would it actually be? No idea. It's hard to think on it further knowing it is very unlikely to become reality anytime soon.