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    Default I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    My group plays pathfinder. After a minor bout of existential depression triggered by trying to fix PF's problems and seeing the true unfathomable madness that underlies 3.PF game design, I decided that I need something different - hopefully with coherent design principles.

    I don't want rules-lite, and I loathe narrative games, so any post that recommends FATE or similar will be ignored. Medium to high crunch? I enjoy the character creation minigame, so making a character in 5 minutes is certainly not an advantage, while not necessarily a drawback. What I would really like is an efficient system that actually diverges from the standard pitfalls of D&D and similar systems, while maintaining the expandability and versatility of something like pathfinder. Fantasy-themed, if possible.

    So basically, who has a unicorn? Can you share?

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Well, one of my go-to games is Hackmaster, which frequently describes itself as a "game of hard choices". There's a free beginning game, with the full game (and a slightly more advanced game) available for purchase.

    I'd call it a relatively high-crunch game, though it doesn't always suffer if you leave some things out (for example, I've long ignored the full fatigue rules). Character creation is lengthy and a little bit swingy, but all of the classes do well at mattering... fighters remain relevant, without mages becoming irrelevant.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    I would also recommend Shadowrun and, although a lot of people here knock it, whitewolf's world of darkness setting.
    Shadowrun remains one of my favorite game concepts, a futuristic meets fantasy type game with a fairly dark premise.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Burning Wheel.

    You make characters by plotting out their entire lives up until the point where you start play, after which characters will continue to progress in individual skills by using them.

    There's an app for making Burning Wheel characters here. https://charred.herokuapp.com/#/ Four lifepaths is "standard".

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    If you like the character creation mini game Traveller has an interesting one. You can die during character creation!
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    My favourites:

    Keltia: low fantasy Arthurian mythology, Celts in post Roman Britain. Actually more PC usable magic than Pendragon, but firmly in the 'trying to be historically accurate' category. The system isn't great, and as a point buy system balance can be really wonky, but a decent little stat-skill system, the only real 'powers' are combat techniques and spells.

    Traveller: low key space opera, characters are generated by a life path system that does not ensure balance. It's definitely not Start Wars or Star Trek, being much closer setting wise to Foundation or maybe the Night's Dawn trilogy, with the speed of interstellar craft a major limiting factor on empires.

    Rocket Age: my sell for this is simple, you can fight Nazis with ray guns on Mars (in answer to the 'who gets the ray guns' question, yes). Essentially planetary romance/1930s space opera, it's based on a solid rules system with a few interesting ideas but nothing mind blowing. Just don't expect science from the game itself, although if wanted you can add in some touches (in my version rockets do have large reaction mass tanks, and all Earthling RAY weapons are essentially particle beams). But you're not playing it for the science, you're playing it to strap a rocket pack to your back and leap out of a rocket in Marian orbit to attack the Nazi war walkers getting close to your ally's city with your RAY rifle. On the down side it is rather narrative.

    Eclipse Phase: while I'm of the opinion that the actual rules are a clunky mess and will only touch it via the Fate hack, it's a really cool transhumanist sf horror setting. Think more cyberpunk, less space opera.

    The Laundry: wish Call of Cthulhu was less depressing (but not too much)? Welcome to the British government's first line of defence against the many angled ones. If you've read the books then the humour is spot on, and it's a good adaption of an older version of BRP. Although I suppose such things as computational sorcery make it really weird, the best way to cast a spell is with a computer (a piece of equipment is the 'necronomiphone', a phone loaded with a basic set of useful spell apps, and it's not too hard to get the permission for one in character creation).

    Unfortunately after this the main systems I'm into these days are either retroclones or Fate.
    Last edited by Anonymouswizard; 2017-12-06 at 07:03 PM.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    If arithmetic and complicated character design are not problems, then I recommend Fantasy Hero. It's the same system as Champions. You have near-infinite flexibility to design weapons, magic spells, magic systems, etc.

    I once designed a magic system for a bard, revolving around buff spells, in the form of inspiring songs. The spell system had the advantage Area Effect and extended duration (24 hours), and the limitations, incantation, requires gestures (playing the harp), Focus (harp), takes five minutes, only effective on entities that can hear him, etc. This made buff spells fairly cheap, and left him free to join the melee.

    The crucial fact is that I designed the spells, not the rulebook. The rules decided how many points they would cost.

    It tracks Stun points, Endurance, and Body points separately. If you run out of Endurance, for instance, many of your abilities can't be used (you're out of breath). I always build a few utility powers that don't cost endurance.

    Lots of people don't like the arithmetic involved in character design. My best friend was one of them. I used to make his characters to his ideas, which he then had no problem running.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    if i may: warhammer frp, for your crunchiness, gurps for your options (i hope you're better at math than me). also, try pendragon, i only hear good things about it. hope this helps.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    I rather like Fantasy Craft, for something that branched off in quite a different way from the whole d20 family of games, and has, among other things, much better balanced classes than 3.5 or 3.P. Sadly, it has a limited fan base and further expansions are in development hell, but the existing materials work.

    It's certainly high crunch in terms of character development. It does have more of the narrative elements you dislike than Pathfinder, but a lot less than the likes of FATE or Burning Wheel, and some of them are just optional. What did you particularly dislike about Pathfinder and want to avoid?

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    The aforementioned HERO system, my preference is 5th edition.

    For something completely different, the Planet Mercenary RPG.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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    The concern is not realism in speculative fiction, but rather the sense that a setting or story could be real, fostered by internal consistency and coherence.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by paddyfool View Post
    I rather like Fantasy Craft, for something that branched off in quite a different way from the whole d20 family of games, and has, among other things, much better balanced classes than 3.5 or 3.P. Sadly, it has a limited fan base and further expansions are in development hell, but the existing materials work.

    It's certainly high crunch in terms of character development. It does have more of the narrative elements you dislike than Pathfinder, but a lot less than the likes of FATE or Burning Wheel, and some of them are just optional. What did you particularly dislike about Pathfinder and want to avoid?
    It's not that I dislike pathfinder, it mostly does what it was made to do. But in remaining a steadfastly faithful successor to 3.5, it inherited the broken foundations. I was basically trying to do your standard pathfinder 'fix' like everybody and their mom, but in a moment of horrifying insight, after opening a dozen new text documents, I realized that "redo all the character statistics, skill system, combat, equipment, and magic" was writing my own RPG. I don't have time for that.

    I want the vast breadth of options and mechanical distinctiveness that pathfinder can do, but not made from plywood held together by yarn.

    WoD and fate don't have that, and they barely even count as games. Not only are they incapable of providing mechanical distinctions, they barely have any mechanics at all.

    So maybe what I really want is just a solid system that runs well that has a bunch of subsystems that work rather than enciting me to rewrite all of them by being so bad.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    RuneQuest, maybe? No classes, no levels, pretty much everything your character can do is either a stat check or a percentile skill. Everyone knows a little magic. If you get in a fight, wear armor and have a shield, or prepare to learn to tie your shoes one-handed.

    GURPS: Extremely flexible character generation. Pointbuy for EVERYTHING. Has sourcebooks for every genre ever thought of.

    Feng Shui: Action-Movie roleplaying. Can do Fantasy from the main book if you like Mythic China, could do Western Fantasy with a bit of hacking.
    Imagine if all real-world conversations were like internet D&D conversations...
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Have you tried D&D 5e yet?

    It's not perfect, but it's a lot less broken than 3.5/PF in specific and d20 systems in general.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by exelsisxax View Post
    So maybe what I really want is just a solid system that runs well that has a bunch of subsystems that work rather than enciting me to rewrite all of them by being so bad.
    Then what you want is GURPS. Seriously, no joke, that's the system you want. If you don't want to shell out for both of the main books plus supplements to narrow down to Fantasy you have a handful of options:

    A) You can just buy the two core books and make what you need for fantasy from it. The two core books in hard cover will run you about $85 or you can get them in PDF for around $55. They will have everything you need to build and run any type of game, and everything really does work together, and you can add or remove as much as you want.

    B) You can buy their new Dungeon Fantasy box set (http://www.sjgames.com/dungeonfantasy/) which pares down the core rules to what's necessary for a fantasy game and then tacks on some stuff from the fantasy supplements. At $60 for the hard copy, it's not a terrible price if you want to get started fast without having to build your bestiary from the ground up

    C) You can pick up GURPS Lite (http://www.sjgames.com/gurps/lite/) for free, and build what you need from there. At 32 pages, it's the basics of GURPS, but it's really all you need for players, and for GMs it's good enough to work from if you've got a head for seeing how mechanics work.

    D) You can pick up GURPS 3rd edition (http://www.sjgames.com/gurps/books/basic/3e/) either for $20 PDF or for whatever you can find it for on ebay/amazon. It's a perfectly good system, and served from 1988-2004. As a single book it's cheaper to get the "whole game" and there's a metric crap ton (not imperial) of supplements and material for it. Chances are your FLGS has some in the clearance section.

    No matter what you pick, as long as you remember that because it's a universal system there's a lot you won't need so be prepared to toss stuff out, you'll get what you're looking for.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    I've been partial to Strike! lately. It's a d6 system, similar to 4th edition D&D, but it plays a lot more smoothly. It's also setting-agnostic; I ran an Overwatch one-shot and it worked really well.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by exelsisxax View Post
    WoD and fate don't have that, and they barely even count as games. Not only are they incapable of providing mechanical distinctions, they barely have any mechanics at all.
    Cut the ****. Just because they have less crunch than you like does not mean they have barely any mechanics at all. Fate is actually packed with both mechanics and discussion of mechanics that makes it flexible, 'here's how stunts work, this is how you make them, and we'll provide you with a bunch of basic ones'. Repeat that with Extras, a little bit of it with skills, and a lot of discussion on how to use the three consequences of Aspects (Permissions, Invocations, and Compels) to make a deep game. Then there's the contest and conflict rules, which are essentially frameworks for using the existing skills in a competitive or offensive fashion (which in some ways is much better than D&D's traditional 'let's separate combat and noncombat statistics'). Skills and Stunts give a good degree of mechanical distinctions between characters even if everybody is using exactly the same systems.

    I could go through the same sort of thing with the WoD games, but that's tiring.

    Heck Lasers & Feelings has about half a side of A4 in rules, characters are differentiated by one number and a couple of words, and it's still a game. It might not be a game that you like, but it's still a game.

    So please, next time say 'I like crunchy games' instead of saying 'games that aren't crunchy barely even count as games'. It's much, much less offensive, and isn't presenting subjective opinion as an objective fact.

    So maybe what I really want is just a solid system that runs well that has a bunch of subsystems that work rather than enciting me to rewrite all of them by being so bad.
    I think you might like Anima: Beyond Fantasy, if you're willing to deal with the fact that character creation is more complicated than 3.PF (it's essentially a Rolemaster descendant). Base Attack Bonus? Ha, if you want a higher Attack bonus spend DP on it, if you don't let it remain at no points invested and put more points into skills or one of the five different power systems (Ki, Magic, Summoning, Psychic Powers, Elan) that are all in the core rulebook and all moderately balanced if you use the rules as written and track time properly (Magic is very powerful but it takes days to recharge Zeon, Ki recharges relatively quickly but you burn through it quickly, Psychic Powers are always available but Power Points are used to both learn them and make them more powerful/likely to succeed, Elan is rather restrictive, and Summon requires a lot of prep work to be worthwhile).

    Quote Originally Posted by Nifft View Post
    Have you tried D&D 5e yet?

    It's not perfect, but it's a lot less broken than 3.5/PF in specific and d20 systems in general.
    Oh yeah, suggest a game with arguably less rules than Fate (but more options). Not that it's bad, but if somebody likes the complexity of 3.X then it likely isn't what they're looking for.
    Last edited by Anonymouswizard; 2017-12-07 at 06:05 AM.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by exelsisxax View Post
    WoD and fate don't have that, and they barely even count as games. Not only are they incapable of providing mechanical distinctions, they barely have any mechanics at all.
    Um. I'll leave Fate aside, as it's probably not to your taste even if it's not as bad as you claim, but White Wolf's assorted gamelines are hardcore crunch, mate. They're got a lot of setting-specific fluff and such as well, but they're every bit as rules-heavy as D&D. If not more so; I can at least make a simple Fighter or Rogue or something in D&D, but good luck making a "simple" character in Exalted.

    Which would be one of my two recommendations-- Exalted, particularly Exalted 3e. The basic idea is that the players are all demigods (~5 of 300, though I think around half have been stolen and corrupted), returning to a crapsack fantasy world that's been slowly deteriorating in their absence. The whole thing has a heavy eastern/Chinese mythological influence-- great heavenly bureaucracies, gods and demons hiding around every tree, magic kung fu, that sort of thing. And the power scale is very high. You start out able to push pure mortals around like it ain't no thing, and scale up to the point where you can walk into a nation and take it over in, like, ten minutes.

    The meat of the system lies in its Charms, which are somewhere between feats and spells. They're fairly standard point-buy rules-packet type things, but there are lots of them. You start with 15, and there are dozens of them in the core book... for each skill. So sure, you've got your big skill trees for athletics and melee combat, lots of games have those sorts of things... but how many have equally large trees for social skills? For weird stuff like Bureaucracy and Performance and Sail? Charms are level- and prerequisite-gated, but every character gets to pick one set and ignore the level-based prereqs, meaning that each starting character will be phenomenally good at something. One guy in the group may start character creation with the ability to shrug off an erupting volcano and tank siege weapons with their face; another might be able to walk into a temple and seduce the sworn-to-celibacy high priest; a third can lead a hundred farmers to victory over a legion of trained soldiers.

    Of course, you've also got highly in-depth rules for not just the usual adventuring stuff, but for social stuff, mass combat, leading countries and other large organizations, doing massive crafting projects, and more.

    It's a fun game.

    ----------

    My other recommendation is Mutants and Masterminds 3e, which is-- in my opinion-- the finest superpower system out there. It's got fairly straightforward framework, and has you build your own powers from a limited set of Effects and Modifiers. It's not hard to learn the basics, but you can spend days playing around with creating weird character ideas. It plays quite quickly once you sit down at the table, and works as well for high-power fantasy as it does for superheroes.
    Last edited by Grod_The_Giant; 2017-12-07 at 08:04 AM.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by Arbane View Post
    RuneQuest, maybe? No classes, no levels, pretty much everything your character can do is either a stat check or a percentile skill. Everyone knows a little magic. If you get in a fight, wear armor and have a shield, or prepare to learn to tie your shoes one-handed.

    GURPS: Extremely flexible character generation. Pointbuy for EVERYTHING. Has sourcebooks for every genre ever thought of.

    Feng Shui: Action-Movie roleplaying. Can do Fantasy from the main book if you like Mythic China, could do Western Fantasy with a bit of hacking.
    With runequest, is it a dedicated skill-based system? That's something i'm avoiding, because they are not meaningfully expandable. They don't really support subsystems once everything is unified by "roll against X". Making new skills just isn't the same as "here's a new thing that works totally different!" Basically the same with GURPS, except that also has a lot more busywork and chores to do in character creation.

    I really don't know anything about feng shui. But i'm really not looking for something to make action scenes with or i'd probably be a fate or PbtA player.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nifft View Post
    Have you tried D&D 5e yet?

    It's not perfect, but it's a lot less broken than 3.5/PF in specific and d20 systems in general.
    I personally believe that 5e is only less broken in areas where it doesn't have rules, but for everything important it is still fundamentally crippled by 3e core design that it still imported. It also has very little content, so I have no reason to play it at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    Cut the ****. Just because they have less crunch than you like does not mean they have barely any mechanics at all. Fate is actually packed with both mechanics and discussion of mechanics that makes it flexible, 'here's how stunts work, this is how you make them, and we'll provide you with a bunch of basic ones'. Repeat that with Extras, a little bit of it with skills, and a lot of discussion on how to use the three consequences of Aspects (Permissions, Invocations, and Compels) to make a deep game. Then there's the contest and conflict rules, which are essentially frameworks for using the existing skills in a competitive or offensive fashion (which in some ways is much better than D&D's traditional 'let's separate combat and noncombat statistics'). Skills and Stunts give a good degree of mechanical distinctions between characters even if everybody is using exactly the same systems.

    I could go through the same sort of thing with the WoD games, but that's tiring.

    Heck Lasers & Feelings has about half a side of A4 in rules, characters are differentiated by one number and a couple of words, and it's still a game. It might not be a game that you like, but it's still a game.

    So please, next time say 'I like crunchy games' instead of saying 'games that aren't crunchy barely even count as games'. It's much, much less offensive, and isn't presenting subjective opinion as an objective fact.
    Yeah, "not games" is a bad description. They are certainly games, but they are not primarily games. They're storytelling engines. Like Microscope, the point isn't to play the game, but using the game to produce a story.

    I want something that is definitely a game. This is completely orthogonal to the rules-heavyness and crunchiness of a system.

    I think you might like Anima: Beyond Fantasy, if you're willing to deal with the fact that character creation is more complicated than 3.PF (it's essentially a Rolemaster descendant). Base Attack Bonus? Ha, if you want a higher Attack bonus spend DP on it, if you don't let it remain at no points invested and put more points into skills or one of the five different power systems (Ki, Magic, Summoning, Psychic Powers, Elan) that are all in the core rulebook and all moderately balanced if you use the rules as written and track time properly (Magic is very powerful but it takes days to recharge Zeon, Ki recharges relatively quickly but you burn through it quickly, Psychic Powers are always available but Power Points are used to both learn them and make them more powerful/likely to succeed, Elan is rather restrictive, and Summon requires a lot of prep work to be worthwhile).
    I can deal with heavy character creation, but is it logical or a convoluted thing with a bunch of derived stats that make everything pointlessly interconnected? And what's the system itself? I have never played rolemaster.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Um. I'll leave Fate aside, as it's probably not to your taste even if it's not as bad as you claim, but White Wolf's assorted gamelines are hardcore crunch, mate. They're got a lot of setting-specific fluff and such as well, but they're every bit as rules-heavy as D&D. If not more so; I can at least make a simple Fighter or Rogue or something in D&D, but good luck making a "simple" character in Exalted.

    Which would be one of my two recommendations-- Exalted, particularly Exalted 3e. The basic idea is that the players are all demigods (~5 of 300, though I think around half have been stolen and corrupted), returning to a crapsack fantasy world that's been slowly deteriorating in their absence. The whole thing has a heavy eastern/Chinese mythological influence-- great heavenly bureaucracies, gods and demons hiding around every tree, magic kung fu, that sort of thing. And the power scale is very high. You start out able to push pure mortals around like it ain't no thing, and scale up to the point where you can walk into a nation and take it over in, like, ten minutes.

    The meat of the system lies in its Charms, which are somewhere between feats and spells. They're fairly standard point-buy rules-packet type things, but there are lots of them. You start with 15, and there are dozens of them in the core book... for each skill. So sure, you've got your big skill trees for athletics and melee combat, lots of games have those sorts of things... but how many have equally large trees for social skills? For weird stuff like Bureaucracy and Performance and Sail? Charms are level- and prerequisite-gated, but every character gets to pick one set and ignore the level-based prereqs, meaning that each starting character will be phenomenally good at something. One guy in the group may start character creation with the ability to shrug off an erupting volcano and tank siege weapons with their face; another might be able to walk into a temple and seduce the sworn-to-celibacy high priest; a third can lead a hundred farmers to victory over a legion of trained soldiers.

    Of course, you've also got highly in-depth rules for not just the usual adventuring stuff, but for social stuff, mass combat, leading countries and other large organizations, doing massive crafting projects, and more.

    It's a fun game.
    I am definitely not lumping in exalted with WoD. But i've heard some horror stories - do you really need to carry dice bags like you're about to play a 40K match as imperial guard?

    I'm aware of the exalted setting (too anime even for japan) but don't know much about the system other than having the same general framework as VtM, and apparently they have their own edition wars. What's the good one to look into, and is there any sort of online resource for it to look into?

    My other recommendation is Mutants and Masterminds 3e, which is-- in my opinion-- the finest superpower system out there. It's got fairly straightforward framework, and has you build your own powers from a limited set of Effects and Modifiers. It's not hard to learn the basics, but you can spend days playing around with creating weird character ideas. It plays quite quickly once you sit down at the table, and works as well for high-power fantasy as it does for superheroes.
    is there any sense of character progression? It seems like the system is geared towards once-and-done characters.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by exelsisxax View Post
    With runequest, is it a dedicated skill-based system? That's something i'm avoiding, because they are not meaningfully expandable. They don't really support subsystems once everything is unified by "roll against X". Making new skills just isn't the same as "here's a new thing that works totally different!" Basically the same with GURPS, except that also has a lot more busywork and chores to do in character creation.

    I really don't know anything about feng shui. But i'm really not looking for something to make action scenes with or i'd probably be a fate or PbtA player.
    You're making quite a few untrue exertions in this, GURPS is probably the primary example of how to build additional subsystems into a stat-skill (really skill-power) system with it's umpteen magic systems. The general rule is that the skill roll should be in there somewhere, but apart from that anything goes (heck, GURPS has at least one magic system where rolling isn't a requirement).

    I highly recommend a copy of GURPS Thaumatology just to see how different magic systems can be while keeping within a basic framework. It begins with some basic tweaks to it's spell system (including Vancian Magic), goes onto Path/Book magic (rituals grouped into themed sets, with also shows how you can change the casting system instead of the spells to represent a different type of magic by providing two ways to use it), touches on updates to the GURPS alchemy system, and even goes into both verb-noun magic and realm magic. Sure, at the end of the day you'll be rolling skill checks in all of them, but only one lets you make spells on the fly, only one tires the caster, only one focuses on creating items, and only one requires the better part of an hour to cast spells.

    Yeah, "not games" is a bad description. They are certainly games, but they are not primarily games. They're storytelling engines. Like Microscope, the point isn't to play the game, but using the game to produce a story.

    I want something that is definitely a game. This is completely orthogonal to the rules-heavyness and crunchiness of a system.
    You're kind of dealing with a distinction without a difference there. All games must fall somewhere on the world-story simulation axis, although they might care only about the world (GURPS), only about the story (Fate), or somewhere in between (Rocket Age). If Fate is a storytelling engine then D&D is a worldshowing engine, while Fate exists to model the ups and downs of a story D&D exist to model the physics of a world (at least in theory).

    I can deal with heavy character creation, but is it logical or a convoluted thing with a bunch of derived stats that make everything pointlessly interconnected? And what's the system itself? I have never played rolemaster.
    A bit of derived stats, but not a lot of interconnectivity. You can however spend points on everything except primary attributes, and Advantages can lower the point cost of certain things.

    I am definitely not lumping in exalted with WoD. But i've heard some horror stories - do you really need to carry dice bags like you're about to play a 40K match as imperial guard?

    I'm aware of the exalted setting (too anime even for japan) but don't know much about the system other than having the same general framework as VtM, and apparently they have their own edition wars. What's the good one to look into, and is there any sort of online resource for it to look into?
    Main differences:
    -Static target number instead of a variable one (you always need to roll above, I think it's seven).
    -Static defences instead of rolled defences.

    That's essentially it. Which makes your insistence that WoD is a storytelling engine hilarious (not even CoD manages it, although it does add in some modelling of character motivations). Oh sure, there's a few minor things, and 3e strays further away, but those are the main differences.

    You can even view CoD's engine as a streamlining of Exalted's. It's not a perfect fit, things like defence have been completely changed, but it's essentially true.

    is there any sense of character progression? It seems like the system is geared towards once-and-done characters.
    Yes, but it's not the game's draw. More Power Points whenever the GM gives them out, a new Power Level when the GM declares you've gone up (often after every fifteen Power Points). But it works just as well with static heroes as slowly developing heroes, as far as the system is concerned growing in power is more of a bonus than a core part of the experience.
    I prefer science fiction to fantasy, and generally play in the former genre. Due to this, I generally expect the laws of physics to apply to games, and work from that perspective.

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    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    If you're looking for crunchy, thoroughly defined fantasy systems with a tendency towards subsystem use I'd recommend REIGN. It's got a stat-skill baseline, plus three talent/power systems - one for skills (think D&D 3.5 skill tricks), one for combat (think martial feats, except that they tend to actually be good), and then the magic system. It's an ORE game, so the underlying mechanics are solid and just work.

    Beyond a high core functionality REIGN has three major points in its favor. One is that it is easily expanded - beyond the core rule book's 450ish pages there's another 1000 pages of free online supplements*. The other two are systemic; there's a really interesting set of magic paths and the best rules for organizational conflict in the hobby.

    Magic in REIGN has a few core assumptions. One is that just knowing magic is never enough, every magical path has a non-magical skill that's critical to it. As just one example, the flame dancers need to be able to dance, and for their more elaborate or larger spells they need to be able to dance for hours. Another is that characters are involved in fairly specific setting-linked magical traditions. There isn't just a pile of spells, there are individual thematic paths with very different capabilities and specializations. A lot of them are also really cool, with the Sunwise healers, Earthquake Drummers, and Smoke sculptors being my personal favorites.

    Then there's the rules for organizations and conflict between them, for everything from a street gang to a nation. They've got a set of five organizational attributes, a codified system of interactions which all use two of those attributes, rules for individual notable assets, rules for large scale conflicts with a lot of groups, rules for the merging and splitting of organizations, and most critically rules for how individual action can shape group conflicts. Said rules are all designed to be easily portable to other systems, and capable of working on their own; with that said there are character-side rules in REIGN that explicitly tie in to them.

    *Technically they're less free than already paid for. REIGN releases use a financial model referred to as the "ransom model" where they're made, people pay whatever they want for them, and once the people interested collectively pay enough they're released for everyone.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by exelsisxax View Post
    I am definitely not lumping in exalted with WoD. But i've heard some horror stories - do you really need to carry dice bags like you're about to play a 40K match as imperial guard?

    I'm aware of the exalted setting (too anime even for japan) but don't know much about the system other than having the same general framework as VtM, and apparently they have their own edition wars. What's the good one to look into, and is there any sort of online resource for it to look into?
    I've not read much WoD, but from what I've seen they're all at about the same level of crunch. I can only really speak for the 3rd edition, which is the newest and most streamlined version, but it's not comically bad. I can't see throwing more than twenty-odd dice at once, and that only on a really big splashy combat roll where you're going all-out.

    Second Edition was huge and sprawling, with dozens of books of various quality and options for playing many different types of Exalt. It also had some deep systematic flaws-- there was an emphasis on perfect attacks, stoppable only by perfect defenses, which could make combat turn into an attrition-based slog where you hoped your opponent ran out of magic to spend on defense before you. Third runs more cleanly, but is still a new edition and is trickling out slowly.

    is there any sense of character progression? It seems like the system is geared towards once-and-done characters.
    There's not that much vertical growth, but there tends to be a lot of horizontal stuff. Characters don't get significantly punchier, though you certainly can invest in more defensive abilities and more modifiers for your offensive ones, but they do get more and more well-rounded. You pick up lots of new tricks and new powers. I've played in and run long campaigns with it, and 1-2 points/session gives you a nice steady rate of character development.

    (You could offer frequent power level jumps if you want, I guess, but scale tends to be more about what sorts of powers you buy and how you flavor things than how many ranks of Damage you have)

    As a point-buy game, it does require some oversight to prevent heavy abuse, but you can't really accidentally break it like you can 3.x-- if you come up with a largely-perfect defense or offense, it's pretty clear that you did so.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by exelsisxax View Post
    I am definitely not lumping in exalted with WoD. But i've heard some horror stories - do you really need to carry dice bags like you're about to play a 40K match as imperial guard?

    I'm aware of the exalted setting (too anime even for japan) but don't know much about the system other than having the same general framework as VtM, and apparently they have their own edition wars. What's the good one to look into, and is there any sort of online resource for it to look into?
    So, Exalted.

    If you're looking for a high-crunch, generally functioning fantasy system, Third Edition is not a bad choice. It has an in-depth momentum-based combat system, a crunchy social mechanical system, roughly a billion magical powers, and a lot of cool setting.

    Both First and Second edition are, mechanically speaking, rough. First Edition is the closest in style to the WoD system, which makes it reliably unreliable and sort of wonky at every level. Second Edition tried some new things, which work great until they don't - it's a minefield of a system that seems like a wonderful romp through a grassy field until and unless you step on the wrong patch of dirty and explode.

    The only downside to Third Edition is that books come out roughly once every three years, and there are a dozen different types of integrated supernatural beings in the setting, of whom we currently have the mechanics for... one (the second should come out some time in 2018). How comfortable are you hand-waving supernatural abilities? There are some rough guidelines to handwave other Exalt types beyond the 'default', but it won't be mechanically rigorous. There are also some fan projects out there. No idea how good they are.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1337 b4k4 View Post
    Then what you want is GURPS. Seriously, no joke, that's the system you want. If you don't want to shell out for both of the main books plus supplements to narrow down to Fantasy you have a handful of options:
    Exactly what this guy said.

    Crunch and dozens of sub-systems which are all consistent with the core rules and work.

    GURPS is more of a toolkit to build a game system than a game system as such. The Basic Set will let you run any game but the supplementary books are what makes it so good (and they hang off a very solid core system).

    In your shoes I would buy Dungeon Fantasy box set because someone has already used GURPS to build a fantasy game. It grew out of GURPS, coupled with the Dungeon Fantasy series of pdfs. It saves you having to work out which of the many awesome sub-systems you do and don't want to use, leaving you free to learn the crunch as written.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    93. No matter what the character sheet say, there are only 3 PC alignments: Lawful Snotty, Neutral Greedy, and Chaotic Backstabbing.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Would you care to play a free indie game?

    I'd like to suggest you my own Final Fantasy RPG, which you can download here on the gitp forums. You got your medium crunch fix (with the standard Theater of Mind rules for combat - if you use the optional Map Combat rules, in the FF Tactics sourcebook, it becomes high crunch), you got meaningless decision for character creation (and advancement, as each class get to choose which abilities they'll gain at character progression), and you get rid of the inherent brokeness of the 3.PF system.


    Heck, I'll cut the slack and copy the download links here:

    FFRPG Complete 4th Edition http://bit.ly/FFRPG4CE

    Final Fantasy IV Worldbook: http://bit.ly/FFRPG4thDLC2

    Final Fantasy VI Worldbook: http://bit.ly/FFRPG4thDLC3

    Final Fantasy Tactics Worldbook: http://bit.ly/FFRPG4thDLC4

    Character Sheet: http://bit.ly/FFRPG4eSheet
    Final Fantasy RPG 4th Edition:
    A complete game, ready for your JRPG-esque tabletop needs, written in Portuguese and English

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    What makes point buy systems broken and open to abuse?
    Quote Originally Posted by Flickerdart View Post
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    I havent seen Savage Worlds mentioned. Yes its lighter on crunch and it is classless, but theres plenty of mechanics to dig around in and enough skills to make decisions feel worthwhile.

    On the other end of the spectrum is the WH 40k line of RPGs. While each one has its own issues, they all play fairly well and the one you'd probably like best is Rogue Trader. Their Life Path system is beautiful.

    Quote Originally Posted by MrZJunior View Post
    What makes point buy systems broken and open to abuse?
    Because its very easy to super optimize to be amazing at most things while never being truly bad at anything? I mean, to use MM 2e as an example, its stupid easy to make a literally unkillable character that can contribute beyond that.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackhawk748 View Post
    Because its very easy to super optimize to be amazing at most things while never being truly bad at anything? I mean, to use MM 2e as an example, its stupid easy to make a literally unkillable character that can contribute beyond that.
    Which is a signal that M&M 2e is specifically broken in a way that is not general to all point-based systems, and/or that the GM in question isn't doing the other half of setting up a game using a point-buy system (see, the standard practice in HERO of establishing campaign limits beyond raw point value). Saying "all point buy is broken because someone can hypothetically build a totally invulnerable character" is like saying "D&D is broken because a first-level fighter can hypothetically have a +5 Holy Avenger With Fries".
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    Verisimilitude -- n, the appearance or semblance of truth, likelihood, or probability.

    The concern is not realism in speculative fiction, but rather the sense that a setting or story could be real, fostered by internal consistency and coherence.

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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    The Laundry: wish Call of Cthulhu was less depressing (but not too much)? Welcome to the British government's first line of defence against the many angled ones. If you've read the books then the humour is spot on, and it's a good adaption of an older version of BRP. Although I suppose such things as computational sorcery make it really weird, the best way to cast a spell is with a computer (a piece of equipment is the 'necronomiphone', a phone loaded with a basic set of useful spell apps, and it's not too hard to get the permission for one in character creation).
    There's an RPG for The Laundry?

    ...Want.
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    Default Re: I think I need a new TTRPG, sell me something

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    Which is a signal that M&M 2e is specifically broken in a way that is not general to all point-based systems, and/or that the GM in question isn't doing the other half of setting up a game using a point-buy system (see, the standard practice in HERO of establishing campaign limits beyond raw point value). Saying "all point buy is broken because someone can hypothetically build a totally invulnerable character" is like sayinghttp://www.giantitp.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?30-Roleplaying-Games "D&D is broken because a first-level fighter can hypothetically have a +5 Holy Avenger With Fries".
    That analogy doesnt work. A level 1 Fighter is not supposed to have a +5 Holy Avenger according to the rules, whereas, by RAW, you are perfectly allowed to make an unkillable character *cough*Superman*cough* and anything the GM does about that is houseruling. Which is fine, as point buy requires that.

    And the question was what makes point buy broken and open to abuse, and i answered: Most point buy allows you to make a character with no real flaws very easily, and some of them (M&M 2e) allow you to make spectacularly broken ones just as easy. I didnt say they where all broken, i just said its a flaw point buy systems have, much like how things based off of DnD 3.5 have that inherent issue of Casters being better than mundanes.
    Quote Originally Posted by Guigarci View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eurus View Post
    There's an RPG for The Laundry?

    ...Want.
    It's cheap and well made! Unfortunately not canon, though. The Stross has declared it as an alternate universe.
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