Savage Worlds/Sundered Skies
by, 02-16-2009 at 10:05 AM (1252 Views)
I've been an RPGer for over a dozen years now. I keep looking over my list of games that I've tried and it always seems woefully short in comparison to some of you out there ... even some people who've been playing for less than half the time I have. I've set out to rectify that, and so far it's going well.
This weekend I got a chance to play in a game of Sundered Skies (using the Savage Worlds system) run by our very own Webhead. My first impression of the system was good; after understanding the basic mechanics and getting a feel for what the different traits do, it took me under an hour to make a character. This, of course, does not count the time it took me to come up with a concept as that can sometimes take me several days and up . I've been fond of the mechanic of using a different die type based on your rating in a trait ever since I saw it in Margaret Weis Productions' Serenity RPG. Savage Worlds takes this same core mechanic and surrounds it with a few others that make it more sound and interesting at the same time (such as raises and the Wild Die). Even though I don't currently have a grasp of the system at the level that running it would require, I felt motivated to gain that familiarity in the short time I had playing it.
Of course, it doesn't hurt that the Sundered Skies setting grabbed me, too. I've long been a fan of White Wolf's Exalted game (both editions) and have often said that it's the setting I love and, because of it, I can forgive the system. Sundered Skies has a lot of similarities with a fantasy setting created by the Weis and Hickman team called Arianus (from their seven book Death Gate series). In short, the world has been blown apart and scattered in a great, unknown cataclysm. All that remains are mysteriously floating islands that support struggling civilizations of Humans, Elves and Dwarves. In Sundered Skies, four more races are added: Drakin, Wildling, Glowborn and Orc. Most will be familiar with the latter race, while the first three are re-imaginings of well known races: the dragon-person, were-animal and goblin, respectively. Toss in skyships, a sinister trade war, piracy and bounty hunters and you've got fodder for years of story telling all sitting in less than two inches of shelf space.
Now, there is a downside to this economy. What I have read of the setting book has left a lot lacking in the detail department. This is frustrating to me and (I can only assume) to many players who would otherwise want to dive headfirst into such a setting. I want to know more, and I've been assured that the GM's section of the setting book has those details. Now ... if only I can restrain myself from peeking at the back of the book .
Overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.