RPG A Day 2017 August 15

August Fifteenth

(Very Slightly Less Belated Than The Last Two)

Prompt: Which RPG Do You Enjoy Adapting The Most?

Well, almost any game I play, I’m going to compulsively create mechanics for. It’s what I do. I build worlds, and I build the rules that define worlds. (Plots, meh, not so much. I’m more George Lucas than J. Michael Straczynski. Just sit back and enjoy the show, folks, and try not to think too hard about it.)

So, again, a tough question, in that it’s a fairly even spread. So I’ll go with Fringeworthy by the late, truly great, and sadly underappreciated Richard Tucholka. The original rules are… uhm… well, they’re… you see… look, it was a different era, OK? Back then, we thought figuring out the density of muscle tissue and bone and organs using a hit location system that resolved down to a few square inches (yes, really) was oodles of fun!

There was a D20 version, because, what wasn’t there a D20 version of, back in the early 2000s, but it… uhm… it was like… erm… look, D20 is more complex to design for than people thought! There’s a lot of implied rules that were never made explicit in the SRD! And hey, he was getting on in years!

So after years of wishing to run a Fringeworthy game, I finally got around to doing it in GURPS… which was a perfect system for it, as it handled the baseline of moderately-gritty semi-realistic alternate history and made it easy to add in all manner of magic, high-tech, psionics, and superpowers.

(Towards the end of his career, Rich started producing rules-free setting books, full of wild imagination, astounding creativity, truly personal and idiosyncratic venues, and a smegload of typographical and layout errors. Much as with Arduin, the sheer force of the creative endeavor overwhelmed weaknesses in mechanics and production values.)


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