Ask The Readers: What is your ”Go To” roleplaying game?

A lot of gamers have that one favorite roleplaying game they always return to, or that they use for every application they can come up with. For some people it’s a generic system like GURPS or FUDGE, others can’t get enough from good old AD&D and still others use Apocalypse World for everything.

I hold many games dear to my heart but I haven’t found the one system to “rule them all” yet. I usually jump from system to system. While I’ve played several games for extended periods of time, I wouldn’t call my self an expert of any of those games. Heck, even when running the games I wrote, I need to look up the rules regularly.

Sometimes I wish I had that one system I could use for almost everything. I wanted Fudge to be this system, but alas I just can’t make that happen. I like Fudge a lot, but for some reason I have a hard time being really comfortable with it. The same happened with Fate. I love Fate Core and especially its light-weight sibling Fate Accelerated, but it’s not the system I’d use for everything.

Recently I have thought about using Basic Roleplaying more often. Because of many years playing and running Call of Cthulhu I feel pretty comfortable with the system. It’s not too crunchy, but still has enough rules so that it doesn’t feel overly light-weight. There’s even a Mecha supplement from Alephtar Games that could help to scratch my current Mecha itch. 🙂

So what’s your “go to” roleplaying game? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

Michael Wolf is a German games designer and enthusiast best known for his English language role-playing games blog, Stargazer's World, and for creating the free rules-light medieval fantasy adventure game Warrior, Rogue & Mage. He has also worked as an English translator on the German-language Dungeonslayers role-playing game and was part of its editorial team. In addition to his work on Warrior, Rogue & Mage and Dungeonslayers, he has created several self-published games and also performed layout services and published other independent role-playing games such as A Wanderer's Romance, Badass, and the Wyrm System derivative Resolute, Adventurer & Genius, all released through his imprint Stargazer Games. Professionally, he works as a video technician and information technologies specialist. Stargazer's World was started by Michael in August 2008.

13 thoughts on “Ask The Readers: What is your ”Go To” roleplaying game?”

  1. BRP. It is so transparent a system that even someone who doesn’t get rules like me can see roughly what effect changes they write are going to have on the game. It is also really easy to adapt skill based games to different technology levels just by messing with the skill list a bit.

  2. From about 1981 to 1986, it was 1st Ed AD&D.
    From 1986 to 1993, it was RoleMaster/SpaceMaster/Cyberspace
    From 1993 to 1996, I didn’t do a lot of gaming, but the two systems I was most interested in were The Mutant Chronicles, and Dreampark.
    From 1996, until 2012, it was FUDGE, with a side-journey into 3.0 and 3.5 d20 from it’s release until 2005. (from 2005 until 2012, I took a bit of a hiatus from gaming).

    Since last year, I’ve been delving into FATE, with heavy interest in WRM.

  3. Tunnels & Trolls seems to be my “come home” game. I love Castles & Crusades for how they managed to FINALLY make the D&D system(s) work properly and logically, as well as quickly. Call of Cthulhu, because there is no better game for pulp adventure, horror, or modern times. Traveller for almost anything else.

  4. Good Question. I always thought it would end up to be GURPS, but never actually got to play/run it. First D20 was my go to system, DND 3,5 and others that used it. But since a few years I am only playing Savage Worlds and use it as my go to system. So far I did not encounter anything I could not recreate with the ruleset. Granted, some things require more work then others, but overall it works great and has not failed me yet.

  5. I’ve been having trouble finding a system that I can really fall back on for a long time. Years ago it was GURPS, but the new book is just too much to introduce to new players. I’ve tried FATE, Savage Worlds, BRP, and countless others, but none quite clicked with me. Recently, though, I was introduced to Ubiquity, the system from the Hollow Earth Expedition, and I really like it.

    I ignored it before, because it’s a pulp game, and I was looking for a universal system But it’s very easy to hack, mostly just by removing talents or skills that don’t suit your setting. (A superhero hack would require more work, but that’s not something I’m interested in.) I guess the system hits a sweet spot – not too complex, but has rules for most anything I’d need to do.

  6. I bounce between AD&D and a heavily houseruled Swords & Wizardry. I’ll give the edge to AD&D, since I’ve been running it for 30 years. It has Seniority. 🙂

  7. My “Go To” rules systems would definitely be BRP and Savage Worlds. Both are reasonably easy to grasp and both can be used for almost any genre. I’ve used both BRP and Savage Worlds to play Steampunk (i.e. Space 1889) and SciFi (i.e. Traveller). We used BRP to play during the French Revolution in a short campaign aptly called “1793”. And I – naturally – hosted and played years of “Call of Cthulhu”.
    I have used and use Savage Worlds with severeal fantasy settings to introduce kids to RPGs.
    I like GURPS a lot but you simply can’t just jump in and get playing – GURPS needs some serious preparation beforehand but it most often leads to a great gaming experience in the long term.

  8. Right now, SKETCH, adapted for Evil Dead. Open Game Night needs something fast and furious, if you’re not careful you could lose a finger.

    Second is Mini Six Labyrinth Lord. OGN has three parties down the same dungeon.

    My goto mechanics are Risus, PDQ, and Fudge.

    I’ve used 5X5 1.0 and revised dice mechanics with some success. Jeff has been tinkering with it at

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