Some Thoughts on Fantasy AGE

I like Fantasy AGE a lot. I tremendously enjoyed the original game using the AGE system, the Dragon Age Roleplaying Game. It even was one of the inspirations for my own fantasy RPG Warrior, Rogue & Mage. Unfortunately I didn’t get to play it as often as I hoped.

Later, when Wil Wheaton created Titangsgrave for Fantasy AGE, I finally was able to run an AGE-powered game. But it quickly turned out that while the rules itself were solid, easy to learn, and fun to play, the adventure was not so great. It felt linear, very constraining, and there was just not enough material to easily flesh out the world. When I picked up Titansgrave I was hoping more for a proper setting book and not just the adventure Wil already ran for his YouTube show. I could have set down, fleshed out the setting myself, but instead I lost interest in running it.

Titansgrave plus Fantasy AGE sounded like a great combination, but without a proper setting book it’s actually not that great. I could go back to Dragon Age, but it’s too grimdark for my current tastes, and the latest Dragon Age computer game still left a bad taste in my mouth, so that’s not really an option right now.


I’ve heard that Green Ronin recently released a new edition of their Blue Rose roleplaying game powered by Fantasy AGE, which might be worth a look. I don’t know much about the setting, aside from its inclusive nature (it’s supposedly very female and LGBT-friendly). From what I’ve read so far it’s praised by fans and critics alike and another full implementation of the AGE rules. Fantasy AGE, as a setting-agnostic ruleset, always felt a tad barebones.

Green Ronin is also working on a Modern AGE RPG which bring the rules to the … eh … modern age. This is another sign that the AGE System isn’t dead yet, but it’s definitely not getting as much support as I hoped it would get. I am still waiting for the Titansgrave setting book which has been hinted at, and I hoped there would be at least a couple setting for it by now.

Rules-wise there’s nothing wrong with Fantasy AGE: it shares some aspects with D&D in its various incarnations, but it’s also lighter than a lot of D&D editions and also different enough to be its own thing. But I would love to see more support for this systems: more settings, more magic schools, more options, etc. Let’s hope we’ll see more exciting AGE releases in the future.

What are your thoughts on this subject? Are there any Fantasy AGE supplements I missed? Should I check out Blue Rose? Please share your 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.

4 thoughts on “Some Thoughts on Fantasy AGE”

  1. Green Ronin released an excellent Bestiary and 4 short adventures called Encounters. Do you now when the Modern Age will be availaible ?

    1. I would be stunned if Modern AGE was available by GenCon.

      I love Fantasy AGE, and Blue Rose AGE edition is excellent. As raskal91 pointed out above, the Fantasy AGE Bestiary is excellent. I just saw on G+ a third party setting PDF was published (and pulled) today on DriveThru RPG, which is both encouraging (and disappointing).

  2. Green Ronin has expressed that they would license the AGE system similarly to Savage Worlds, which is great news.
    TLDR: you may be able to freely create material for AGE with attribution.

    I haven’t heard any updates since then.

    I actually like how bare bones it is! AGE has a good amount of dedicated fans and homebrewers and I think the ability to easily extend the game is one of its strong points. Adding content into other games felt a little restrictive because the endless amount of published material had choked out what’s appropriate / canon. When I look at AGE, I see possibilities. I see a system that incites imagination in those of us that -want- to create more material on top of a decently solid foundation. I may be speaking too soon, but who knows.

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