What I’ve dubbed the week of favorite continues on #RPGaDay2015 Challenge! I can hear the Stargazer struggling with his bonds in the basement, but I’m still running the ship around here… So on to the next topic:
Day 18 – Favorite sci-fi RPG
To those who read yesterday’s post, did you guess? If you said Star Frontiers you are correct!
I’ve proclaimed my love for that game before, like here, and here. So I won’t repeat myself, needless to say click on the first of the previous two links if you want to look at the books yourself.
Like yesterday’s post I could list all the sci-fi media I enjoyed while growing up, Star Trek TOS (and later TNG) and Dr. Who (to me Tom Baker will always be my Doctor!) in Spanish when they were broadcast in local channels. There was a lot of Anime also translated to Spanish such as Star Blazers, Captain Harlock, G-Force, Mazinger Z, and Captain Future which Michael mentioned recently, among many others. My favorite Anime series was definitely Robotech. I also enjoyed Ulysses 31, and of course, the elephant in the room, an elephant from a long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, Star Wars! And I haven’t listed any of the books…
If you look at the sample above you can see the diverse types of sci-fi I grew up watching, classifying them into a catch all label is difficult, and thus choosing just one favorite sci-fi RPG is tough… So if I can digress a little and drill down to specifics, let’s break it down to my different favorite sci-fi games based on my incredibly arbitrary classifications.
Star Frontiers is a sentimental favorite, I played the heck out of that system. I don’t know if I would run it again as is… The Last Parsec by Pinnacle Games for Savage Worlds is a terrific spiritual successor. My favorite sci-fantasy game I’ve never played is Fading Suns. For “hard” sci-fi game, Traveller, I actually got on the bandwagon late with Mega Traveller, but I was just enthralled by the vast backstory. I’ve since collected the original books, the Mongoose and GURPS version and more.
As for my favorite post-apocalyptic game, Gamma World of course (with Rifts a close 2nd despite the system), mecha game, Robotech (again despite the system); there is so much goodness to be had in sci-fi gaming! And then if we mix my love of comics with sci-fi well you get my favorite team, the Legion of Super Heroes, but that’s a whole new ballgame and favorite supers rpg is the topic for tomorrow. See you then.
What’s your favorite sci-fi RPG? Let us know in the comments bellow…
PS – On Day 7, Free Favorite RPG, my choice was Stars Without Number. If you are a fan of Traveller, issue #2 of the free irregular journal dedicated to Sine Nomine Publishing games has Lifepath Character Generation rules very reminiscent of Traveller for Stars Without Number, check out the free PDF here!
Congratulations to your 300th post, my friend!
300… This is Stargazer’s World!
Do I get a raise? 😉
I’m also a big fan of Star Frontiers and Stars Without Number! In addition, I’ve played several editions of Doctor Who, Star Trek, and Star Wars, including both official and unofficial versions.
Of those, I’d say that Doctor Who: Adventures in Time and Space and Star Wars: Saga Edition are my favorites because of thorough support and ease of use. For Trek, it’s a tossup between Prime Directive (multiple systems), the Last Unicorn Games version, and the Decipher version.
I also have fondness for Shadowrun, although crosses into fantasy territory, and Paranoia is comedic gold. I’m less of a postapocalyptic fan. In terms of homebrew cyberpunk, space opera, and time travel, I’ve had the most success as a Game Master with GURPS, D20, and FATE.
If I was stranded on an island with a bunch of friends, I’d probably go with one of these generic systems to revisit favorite “hard SF” and pulpy sci-fi settings.
I played some Fasa Star Trek, but the results were mixed, because not everyone was into Trek so the attitudes varied. My father in law is a BIG time Trek fan and I would love to get him involved in some Trek gaming.
Paranoia, my second favorite funny RPG, we played some really laugh out loud session in high school, we’d go through those clones far too quickly.
Thanks for your comment!
Back in the day (the 1980’s), it was Aftermath! … complex and semi-heavy system, but I loved the flexibility it had for just about any type of modern or post-apocalyptic game play. It even had seeds for things like Planet of The Apes and other things.
I was also a big fan (and consumer) of the original Star Trek RPG.
In the 1990’s … The Mutant Chronicles. By far, my biggest investment in RPGs during the 1990’s. To a lesser extent, the short-lived, very light (if a little simplistic in mechanics) Dreampark RPG. Which I converted Doom!, WH40k, and a few other things to run using the Dreampark mechanics.
During the 2000’s, I used D&D 3e, with various supplements and other d20 based games (such as the first edition Star Wars d20, and Dragonstar from FFG), to run a post-apoc game that had both fantasy and sci-fi elements. (demi-gods had created a dyson sphere, to keep out a big-bad demonic enemy… and then the demi-gods began to squabble among themselves; the PCs got as far as dealing with that squabble, but had only begun to find the hints of the external big-bad, when the campaign ran down due to 2/6 of the players moving away).
Right now? Looking to mix Stars Without Number, the Whitebox OSR sci-fi material (whose name escapes me at the moment), and FATE … and trying to find a new game group to run it with 🙂
Oh, and, in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, I was huge into SpaceMaster and Cyberspace (and toyed with using the Middle Earth RPG + Cyberspace as a replacement for Shadowrun). I was also into the early editions of the Cyberpunk RPG, and Shadowrun 1st and 2nd editions, but more as an idea than an actual thing I played.
My interest in SpaceMaster lasted up until Dreampark came out, and I started to yearn for an ultra-light set of RPG rules. After that, it was all about smaller and lighter. First, how to generalize Cyberspace for all sci-fi settings (not just cyberpunk), then how to convert Dreampark to FUDGE (which I had a lot of half-finished works, but never fully got it done). The only “heavy” system I was into in the late 1990’s was The Mutant Chronicles — I loved the setting too much to care about the “heavy” mechanics.
Johnkzin, great to read you! Never played Dreampark… SpaceMaster, like RoleMaster was not my cup of tea, too many tables back then. Mutant Chronicles I loved, a friend of mine did an AD&D 2nd edtion conversion (I think I still have the document) and we had a lot of fun…