It all started with the Fantasy Craft preview PDF. While I was paging through it, my girlfriend was sitting next to me, and when we reached the section about Drakes, she exclaimed: “We HAVE to play this!” To understand this, you have to know that she absolutely loves dragons and everything somewhat resembling dragons. When we tried out D&D 4th Edition, she of course played a Dragonkin character. Who would have guessed. 😉
Then I started reading a few previews and messages on Twitter praising the game, so I finally gave in, put down some hard earned cash and got a copy of Fantasy Craft. Almost $30 is quite hefty for a PDF, but it looked like it might be worth it. While I was leafing through it, I was stunned. Wow, it’s perhaps not as good looking as some other books out there, although the cover art is mega cool, but I very much like what I’ve seen so far.
So, what is Fantasy Craft anyway? It’s Crafty Games’ take on fantasy role playing using the d20 system. Instead of creating a game that is more or less compatible to D&D 3.5 (like Pathfinder), they created an almost completely different game. Combat has been streamlined (Attacks of Opportunity are gone for example), there are a lot of cool new character classes and races, they came up with a new way to create NPCs and monsters, they totally overhauled feats and the magic system relies on magic points and skills. Wow! Of course I haven’t been able to read all 400 pages of rules, yet, but I am officially impressed. More than once I thought: “That’s how D&D 4th Edition should have looked like”.
Currently the easiest way to get your hands on a copy of Fantasy Craft is to buy it from RPGNow, although I’ve heard you can also get printed copies at your local shops (in the US at least). I haven’t spotted it on Amazon, yet.
"That's how D&D 4th Edition should have looked like."
I couldn't stand some of the stuff in it so I'll have to respectfully disagree.
Fantasy Craft is better than 3.5 (although it stumbles in some of the same areas) and better than Pathfinder, but it doesn't do what 4e does. That's good for you, but the reason I won't touch it with a 10 foot (or is that 2 squares?) pole.
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Sure, Fantasy Craft is not for everyone. Neither is D&D 4th Edition. It's a matter of taste. But as far as I've seen so far, it looks more like my kind of game than D&D 4E.
This is the second time in under an hour I've seen a glowing reference to Fantasy Craft. I'm officially intrigued.
Completely tangentially, if your girlfriend loves dragons you should both take more than a brief look at Hoard. You play newly-fledged dragons in a complexly-dragonish society. It's free, well-written, only 70-ish pages to absorb, and bends all its rules around making dragons properly dragonish at heart.
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