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Kaeso
2012-07-26, 07:39 PM
Hey guys,

My question is rather simple, I'm looking for an RPG that:
-Is set in modern times (with "modern" meaning anything ranging from the 1900's to the near future)
-Has a somewhat active player basis
-Is at least somewhat balanced
-Doesn't require you to get a seperate degree to understand the rules
Do you have any of those systems in mind? If the response is d20modern (which already heavily fails on the balancing unless I'm mistaken), do you know any active websites dedicated to playing it? It just seems so much fun to roleplay a French soldier in colonial Indochina or a steampunk scientist from Berlin, or a US marine or anything else in a modern setting, just to have a break from the average sword and sorcery setting. That setting is amusing and I love it, but variation is the spice of life.

Thanks in advance.

Rakmakallan
2012-07-26, 07:45 PM
I'd say Shadowrun, but it clashes with the request about rule simplicity. Basically, you could adapt almost any rule set to modern times, with more or less work, but if you are also looking for active communities, your best bet would be Call of Cthulhu or WoD.

GolemsVoice
2012-07-26, 07:48 PM
WoD isn'T bad, but I think Savage Worlds suits you. It's simple, relatively balanced, and has a lot of settings if you want. The game itself is only a rulesystem, like d20.

Raum
2012-07-26, 10:09 PM
My question is rather simple, I'm looking for an RPG that:
-Is set in modern times (with "modern" meaning anything ranging from the 1900's to the near future)
-Has a somewhat active player basis
-Is at least somewhat balanced
-Doesn't require you to get a seperate degree to understand the rules
Do you have any of those systems in mind? Savage Worlds has several modern-ish settings - from the upcoming Deadlands Noir, to Pinebox, Wierd Wars, Agents of Oblivion, and probably a few others I'm forgetting.

There's also World of Darkness (old or new), FATE (Spirit of the Century and Dresden Files are both 20th century plus), Unisystem (though it isn't supported as well as it used to be and isn't always balanced), and possibly GURPS. There's a lot out there! ;)

What else do you want from a system? I'll reiterate Savage Worlds if you're looking for tactical action, FATE if you want a more narrative game, and GURPS if you want lots of options.

Arbane
2012-07-26, 10:11 PM
GURPS might be good - very customizable characters, and good sourcebooks on every conceivable topic from mecha to Russia to spellcasting systems.

Science Officer
2012-07-26, 10:18 PM
I'd like to second FATE or Fudge, whichever one. The DFRPG ruleset is really great, versatile, and easy to use.

Knaight
2012-07-26, 10:19 PM
I'd hit up the generics. However, if you don't mind a slight horror bent there is a free game by the name of Nemesis - it is brilliant, it has innovative mechanics, the horror bent can be removed if you don't want it, and it costs $0 to download completely legally.

For reference, a matter of mechanical elegance: In the combat system, one roll determines initiative, damage, hit location, and when blocks go off. It allows a wide variety and complexity in each of those. Yet you never have to check a table, don't need another roll until next round, and don't even need to do any real math. It also integrates tactics (e.g. called shots) into this with ease, and doesn't really do anything that isn't present in the rest of the system to some extent as well. Every roll made determines both how well and how quickly an action is taken, and you will have both of these results faster than you get just the one in any other system on the market.

Down Comforter
2012-07-27, 01:52 PM
I'm not sure about the active player base, having only played it offline, but I thought Ultramodern4 was great. It's from the makers of the Amethyst setting and it's based off of D&D 4th ed.

Grail
2012-07-27, 11:48 PM
True 20 (http://true20.com) is the system you are after.

Grod_The_Giant
2012-07-29, 08:42 PM
True 20 (http://true20.com) is the system you are after.

Quite possibly. I've only read through the rulebook, but it looks pretty good, and I love Mutants and Masterminds (with which it has many similarities, being published by the same company)

Hylas
2012-07-29, 11:10 PM
If I were to do a modern setting I'd pick GURPS 4e, but only because I'm familiar with the rules. There is a learning curve and I wouldn't have quite the same appreciation for it if I didn't have a group instruct me on how to use it. Being a modular system you can make it as simple or as complex as you want with extra books putting more magic spells in, or psionics, or more martial arts. In the end I'd say it's about as complex as D&D 3.5 if you throw in splat books (as many options, but GURPS doesn't have the issue of there being 200 classes each of which have their own mechanics, it's much more unified), and that the skill system isn't completely intuitive (it's along the lines of "an 18 gives me a +4? Why a +4?" that d20 has) but much easier to use once you learn how.

World of Darkness is pretty easy to learn and there's plenty of options to make a good or sucky character.

Unknown Armies has a cool setting but I find it too difficult to be any good at more than 2 or 3 skills and Jack-of-all trades type characters end up failing most of the time, and there's no rules for having "feats" or any sort of ability which isn't a skill. If Warhammer's system had a modern non-Warhammer setting and set of rules I'd recommend that over Unknown Armies if you have a d100 system itch.

Grail
2012-08-02, 12:22 AM
Quite possibly. I've only read through the rulebook, but it looks pretty good, and I love Mutants and Masterminds (with which it has many similarities, being published by the same company)

Both True20 and M&M were born from the same system, that used by Blue Rose, the game of Romantic Fantasy Roleplay.

Saying that, it's a great system, which uses some of the best bits of the d20 system, but ramps it up. Takes the DnD out of the system and leaves you with a nice, generic system that does combat well, whilst sticking with something that most gamers are familiar with, the underlying d20 concept.

And I just love that there are no HP.
Conviction being tied to the character's nature is also good. It ties in the "alignment" system with a mechanical benefit, whilst actually removing the "alignment" system at the same time. :D

BootStrapTommy
2012-08-02, 12:43 AM
GURPS might be good - very customizable characters, and good sourcebooks on every conceivable topic from mecha to Russia to spellcasting systems.

This.

GURPS (Generic Universal Role-playing System). It's designed to be as general as possible and to be used in most any kind of setting. I've done a number of "space cowboy" campaigns with it. Replace the starships with horses, and you have the Old west. Replace your repeater with an M1 garand and your revolver with a M1911 .45 Auto, and you're a U.S. Marine on Iwo Jima.

I also find it one of the more fun systems, because your character is more than just a class.

Sidmen
2012-08-02, 01:00 AM
I'd like to throw a hat in the ring for new World of Darkness; it has an active community over on the white-wolf boards (http://forums.white-wolf.com/default.aspx?g=topics&f=22). Its rules are a good balance of light and heavy, though the books can be a bit verbose.

Killer Angel
2012-08-02, 02:15 AM
This.

GURPS (Generic Universal Role-playing System). It's designed to be as general as possible and to be used in most any kind of setting. I've done a number of "space cowboy" campaigns with it. Replace the starships with horses, and you have the Old west. Replace your repeater with an M1 garand and your revolver with a M1911 .45 Auto, and you're a U.S. Marine on Iwo Jima.

I also find it one of the more fun systems, because your character is more than just a class.

It's also one of the more balanced game systems I can think of.

Mark Hall
2012-08-04, 10:45 AM
In addition to Savage Worlds, I'd also suggest "Apocalypse Prevention, Inc", from Third Eye Games (http://thirdeyegames.net/). The base game assumes trouble-shooters for a "keep normals in the dark" style game, but it's flexible and simple. Eloy Lasanta (https://www.facebook.com/ThirdEyeGames) is nice and accessible, as well.

They also produce "Part-time Gods", "Wu Xing: The Ninja Crusade" and "Mermaid Adventures".

Tengu_temp
2012-08-04, 10:51 AM
Sounds like you want Spirit of the Century. As a bonus, the SRD is completely free, it has everything you need to play and you can easily find it on the net.


It's also one of the more balanced game systems I can think of.

GURPS is balanced only if the DM oversees the character creation process closely, to ensure everyone stays on more or less the same power level. You know, like almost every other RPG out there.