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tesral
05-14-2008, 12:58 AM
Okay, guilty pleasure. I like the idea of Rifts. However, I have never really liked the Rifts system. Megadamage alone is a mega-pain.

Rifts d20....

From D&D we take the magic and the melee weapons. From Star Wars we take the future tech and the Force powers as a kind of mentalist. Modern fleshes out the weapons selection. personally I would add my own home brew psioncs just to add flavor.

All that is really need to finish things is decide if armor adds to Armor Class or Damage Reduction and what classes you will use. Oh and how Hit points are handled. I'm favoring Vitality myself.

Any suggestions, additions, questions?

Webhead
05-14-2008, 09:34 AM
Interesting concept. I am also someone who finds the basic concept of Rifts interesting, but I loathe Paladium’s system and the generally poor organization of their books. I think going with the Vitality/Wound system as you suggest is a good idea. If you can get a hold of Jonathan Tweet’s Omega World mini-RPG published in Polyhedron a few years ago (I think it’s still available from Paizo’s site), there may be some minable ideas there in terms of sci-fi weaponry and mutant/psychic powers. Also, I’ve never read the d20 version, but Deadlands: Hell on Earth has info about psychic and mutant classes, so there may be some good stuff there as well.

I’ve always been in favor of armor reducing damage rather than increasing “attack difficulty”, but damage reduction in D&D can be a pain at times.

tesral
05-14-2008, 11:35 AM
The Rifts concept being what it is it should be possible to pull things in from just about anywhere. Tweek to find the cultural mode, or not it that is indicated and play away. One can find pockets of anything.

My personal preference is to play down the Coalition, make it a lot less powerful, and to mix up the world more with pockets of "strange new place" here and there. The object being to make traveling the world an adventure in and of itself.


My second problem with the Rifts books is the arms race you see. Each successive book has a place where the science is madder, the mutants more powerful, the juicers juicer, and the damage even more mega The Coalition ends up being one the less powerful groups on the planet. Why are they still there?

Tone it down. Keep the super science unique rather than something that is in production. Having power armor might allow you to control a small area, but not a quarter of the world. Why? You didn't get to bring your total infrastructure when you got dumped here.

The result would be a patchwork of small time warlords with tech, magic or some such. Not vast nation states.

Webhead
05-14-2008, 12:09 PM
In my opinion, Rifts' source of both its greatest strength and greatest weakness is the sheer plethora of options out there. Sure, you can play almost any kind of bizarre character you want, but that means two major issues:

1) The world is chaos. Some may like this and chaos can be fun and adventurous, but it also can strain the nerves at times.

2) Game Balance. As you mention, there is a tangible "arms race" among Rifts supplements where each book is "more bad@$$" than the book that preceded it. When you try to create a million different character options, you also tend to loosen the grip of balancing on thing against another. It also means a challenge for the GM (I've witnessed this first hand) where parties will have characters who are clearly superior to others in certain situations and can even disrupt plots with a whimsical wave of their hand.

I like the core idea of Rifts, but in practice it is a little unwieldy for me.

But back to your game, yeah, due to the wide variety of options in Rifts, pretty much any d20 book could provide good ideas. Especially anything sci-fi (like Star Wars, Dragonstar, d20 Future, etc) or anything post-apocalyptic (Gamma World, Omega World, Darwin's World, d20 Apocalypse) would serve you well. Defining classes would be kind of tricky. Either you end up with a list of 20 or more unique classes, or you make just a handful of "core archetype" classes (maybe akin to d20 Modern) and then use the Star Wars Saga concept of Feat selection and Talent Trees to let players customize. Dunno...that's a weird one to think about.

Inquisitor Tremayne
05-27-2008, 10:34 AM
Okay, guilty pleasure. I like the idea of Rifts. However, I have never really liked the Rifts system. Megadamage alone is a mega-pain.

Rifts d20....

From D&D we take the magic and the melee weapons. From Star Wars we take the future tech and the Force powers as a kind of mentalist. Modern fleshes out the weapons selection. personally I would add my own home brew psioncs just to add flavor.

All that is really need to finish things is decide if armor adds to Armor Class or Damage Reduction and what classes you will use. Oh and how Hit points are handled. I'm favoring Vitality myself.

Any suggestions, additions, questions?


Armor has always been a problem in Star Wars. I like the idea of it providing DR but then everyone and their momma is going to be wearing it. So there should be some penalties to go with it that can be offset by taking talents or feats etc...

Vitality works pretty well for hitpoints. Assuming you are using the Vitality/Wound point system? I always liked it and made the game much more deadly, but then everyone was all about maximizing their crit value.

Are you familiar with the VG Mass Effect?

There is a good thread here (http://forums.gleemax.com/showthread.php?t=972157)converting the vg to SW Saga.

I suggest taking a look at that because armor is handled differently (in the vg at least) and weapons are kind of unique and there is a cool FTL system (in the vg).

Snuffy
05-28-2008, 10:39 AM
I was running a Rifts game for the past 2 years until recently. As a group we had a lot of fun even with the Paladium system which is dated. I'd like to see another system without the MDC. Another option you can take if you only hate the MDC system is to use SDC ONLY, use a multiplier for the MDC to SDC conversion of your choosing, and then apply your armor rating system. Just a thought if you don't want to do too much rewriting.

I agree about most of the books. I use the books for ideas, but like to keep everything rather desolate with odd towns around. I also only allowed the players to choose characters out of the main book.

I thought one of my better ideas for a town was an amusement park that only had the structures of the roller coasters still standing. The people of the town kept the maintenance of the structures although they had no idea what they were for. Generations of Carnies just made me laugh for some time and still make me chuckle today.

There's a lot of quarky stuff you can pull off to have fun and bring amusement for the players while they try to keep in character.

Please let us know on what you come up with for a system. I'd be really interested and what comes out of your games.