Later, we will have much more information about the Maid Role-Playing Game. In the meantime, here are the basics.
Maid is a game where all the players are maids who serve a master. The gamemaster, or "GM", plays the role of the master. It is by default a lighthearted anime-themed roleplaying game of conflict, friendship, romance, and overcoming adversity for the sake of the master. Crazy events happen all the time in the mansion; a yakuza crime boss shows up with a deed to the mansion, claiming ownership; a meteorite crashes into the garden, from which a strange alien princess emerges; a giant robot threatens the city, including the mansion. The maids have to deal with all these events while at the same time making sure the master is protected and well cared for.
This game is rated Older Teen: Age 16+.
The book stands at a whopping 222 pages. The actual rules required to
play the game only take up a few pages near the front of the book.
With the first twenty pages, you can create characters and begin playing with no problem. The rest of the book includes pre-written scenarios, replays (script format transcriptions of actual play sessions, to help understand the game), extra random event tables to assist GMs with scenario planning, costumes, items, optional rules for players playing masters, head maids and butlers, rules for generating mansions, and optional rules for inter-character romance and secuction.
In Japan, the original Maid RPG was hardly 40 pages. Later they released two supplements for the game: One was a collection of scenarios, the other was a collection of optional rules, costumes, items and the like. For the English version of the game, we combined them all together into one giant, complete, game book.
There is no inherent setting or genre for the game, rather it allows
you to set the game in any setting or genre you wish. Of course, the
default will be a mansion in modern Japan or your own country.
However, there is material and event tables which make the game easily playable in fantasy, science fiction, early modern/Victorian Era, old Edo, western, jungle, and post-apocalypse settings. There is genre support, too: The default is light comedy, but there are event tables and material for romance, action, horror, gritty/pulp, and realistic genres.
All you need is a mansion, a master, and female housekeepers who serve the master. This could be in Dynastic China or on a faraway space colony.
The system is extremely simple: Each maid has 5 stats, rated from 0
to 5. Roll a single die ("d6" in gaming parlance), and multiply
it by the rating being used: This provides a result of 0 to 30. The GM
sets a difficulty number to meet or exceed.
When two characters are in conflict with each other, the same rolls are made: The loser of the conflict takes the difference as "Stress Damage" (be it from a swordfight, being intimidated by thugs, or failing to seduce a passerby.
Since some stats are rated at "0", the Maid will automatically fail at those tasks. So the player needs to try to change the situation so that another of the maid's stats is applicable.
If a maid takes too much stress, she triggers a "stress explosion":
The character resorts to crying, violence, alcohol, teasing, shopping or sports to regain composure.
As maids complete tasks for or comfort the master, they receive points of favor. These points can be kept to serve as a "scorecard" of how much the master loves them, or spent to force wild "random events" to occur at the mansion.
You pick your maid's name. Everything else is decided by the dice.
In truth, the character creation system is "roll or choice", which means that you can choose some features of your character (albino, vampire, princess, yakuza member, secretly a scientist, etc) or roll them all randomly and generate a diverse character.
Character generation is simple, fast, and leads to play within minutes.
Maid practically runs itself as a game. You can create a session based
on a few random events, and run an entire game session in 30 minutes
to an hour. You can also choose a mode of play called the "favor
race", where the maids race to gain a certain amount of favor in
a certain period of time: They attempt to work hard and earnestly for
the master, all the while thwarting the other maids' attempts to do the
Finally, there's the scenario game, where you use one of the included scenarios (or create your own), and have the maids go through it like an adventure. Random events still occur, crazy things still happen, but the overall game is more defined.
All three of these play styles are supported in the rules. This makes it very easy for a GM to round up some players and get a game going even a few minutes after opening the book!