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  Click here to go to the first special guest post in this thread.   Thread: Best System for G.I. Joe?

  1. #1
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    Best System for G.I. Joe?

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    I've been trying with my very limited time to tweak various game systems to emulate the G.I. Joe setting. I first tried with D20, but I've been thinking that maybe Cyberpunk or even WoD would serve as decent games also.

    Recently, I've come into possession of a ton of games; oWoD, nWoD, Buffy, Angel, Aberrant, Trinity, Ars Magica, D&D 4e, Heroes Unlimited, SW d6, SW D20, SW Saga, Serenity, Star Trek, Cyberpunk, Shadowrun 4e, Cartoon Action Hour, Gurps 4e, Palladium, DC Heroes MEGS, Marvel FASERIP, Marvel SAGA, and M&M.

    Now I seem to have tons of options, and need some guidance! Has anyone ran a GI Joe game? What system did you use, what system changes (if any) did you make, and... can you share any stats of the Joe or Cobra teams?

    Thanks so much!
    -RV
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    I would pick a relatively rules medium-lite point buy or descriptive system, personally. Unisystem has become my "go to" system of choice, but in this case, I would definitely consider the very inexpensive Wushu rules.

    Some of your systems, I would immediately count out.
    Marvel rules - too high powered, Palladium doesn't work, M&M might do it ok, but the crunch would be too high for me, Star Wars - too much side stuff going on there, DC Heroes has the same problem as Marvel, hrm. . .

    Of your list, if I wanted crunchiness, I would definitely go with Shadowrun; it fits perfectly.
    Last edited by PhishStyx; 06-02-2009 at 09:41 PM.

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    I suggest trying Spycraft, as it's really only one step off of GI Joe anyway. Start the characters at level 5 (which is where the expert classes come into play). A few examples of pairing characters to classes:

    Duke is a Counter-Terrorist
    Heavy Duty is a Grunt
    Destro is a Politico
    Baroness is a Trigger(wo)man
    Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow are probably cross classed between Ninja and Raptor (a kind of cybernetic ninja)
    General Hawk is a Tactician
    Scarlett is probably a Field Analyst with perhaps a bit of Virtuoso
    RipCord is a Stuntman
    Trakker is a Transporter

    And these are off the top of my head. Spycraft is already a modern game, easy to scale to whatever tech level you're after, and is a d20 game tuned to gun combat out of the box. If it isn't exactly what you're looking for, it's a good start. Oh, and all of what I said is out of the main book. Toss in the World on Fire book and you have the Mole, the Forward (a spotter), Medics, the Saboteur, and the Terrorist, to name a few.

    Plus, spycraft has a great system for dealing with the minions of the opposition army so you chop through them, and several mechanics that I think you'll appreciate, such as possibly the coolest chase mechanic ever (non-vehicle specific, and even applies to foot chases).

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    Well, he didn't list Spycraft, and that would be a hellacious buy in if he doesn't already have it. I listed Wushu, but the buy in on that is about $15 total.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhishStyx View Post
    Well, he didn't list Spycraft, and that would be a hellacious buy in if he doesn't already have it. I listed Wushu, but the buy in on that is about $15 total.
    If you go in the direction of Wushu (a fantastic game if you don't mind rules-lite) I would recommend you go with Wushu Open: Reloaded which is available for free. This is probably the best, most helpful version of the Wushu rules that I have encountered.

    Landscape orientation: http://www.story-games.at/wushu/open_reloaded.pdf

    Portrait orientation: http://silverpath.pbwiki.com/f/open_reloaded_basic.pdf

    Question: what "feel" are you going for? Is it supposed to be a more "realistic" or "gritty" type of game of government super commandos or is it supposed to be more like the cartoon or comic series with over-the-top, zany action with monologuing villains and super weapons that turn babies into gold or blow up the ocean? What "type" of G.I. Joe game you're running will help determine the best system to get your game to "feel" right.
    Last edited by Webhead; 06-02-2009 at 09:56 PM.
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    True. The Spycraft book is kinda expensive, using checking in around 40$. However, one good thing that company has done is while the main book is a tad expensive, as is World on Fire (the official campaign setting), most of their supplements are 5$ or less, typically around 1$. You're also getting a lot of info with the main book, well over 500 pages if you count indexes. Plus, tweaking the "Campaign Qualities" in the back of the book, I think he'd have an exceedingly easy time making a GI Joe game.

    Of the ones you did list, I'd probably have to give the nod to Serenity.

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    Well, as far as the general 'feel' I'm trying to capture, I'd have to say leaning towards the comics much more than the cartoon series. I also like the GI Joe: Resolute mini-series! And I'm hating what I've seen so far for the movie trailers!

    Over all I like grit, but am not adverse to rules-lite systems (but the Cartoon Action Hour RPG seemed to go a little too far in the wrong direction). My particular 'flavor' of Joe is RAH, and have not seen (and don't care to) Sigma-6.

    I've found Spycraft on Amazon for about $50.00. It's a little steep, but if it does modern better than D20 Modern, then I may consider it. What more can you tell me about Spycraft, and what's with the regular SC and the 2.0?

    I just check out Wusu, and yeah, that seems a little too light for my tastes...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roman Virtue View Post
    ...I just check out Wusu, and yeah, that seems a little too light for my tastes...
    Yes, it's not for everyone, but when you can get your players into it, it turns into something powerful and exciting.

    From the sound of it, I would probably recommend (of the systems you mentioned you have) either Buffy/Angel if you want to stay on the slightly "lighter" side or M&M if you're not afraid to get a little more "crunchy".

    As far as Spycraft, it may do what you're looking for and it is definately very hefty in the "crunch" department but, as you have discovered, it is rather expensive to buy into.
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    I'm taking a shot in the dark here, but how about Twilight 2000? For lighter rules, may i suggest Mongoose Traveller or Traveller CT.
    Thoth-Amon, Lord of the Underworld and the Undead
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thoth-Amon View Post
    I'm taking a shot in the dark here, but how about Twilight 2000? For lighter rules, may i suggest Mongoose Traveller or Traveller CT.
    Hmm, I haven't heard of any of these...
    --- Merged from Double Post ---
    I just got done checking out the Spycraft pdf, and so far it looks very much like what I'm after (though at 500 pages, it'll take me some time to know for sure)!

    And being a D20, I can use options from some other books, play around with the system until it feels right.

    Thanks for the advise so far guys! Please keeping feeding me more info if you got any!
    Last edited by Roman Virtue; 06-03-2009 at 01:28 AM. Reason: Automerged Double Post
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    Ok good you found it on your own. It's not a hard system to learn and tweak to what you need. If ya need help understanding a mechanic let me know, I seem to be the go-to for spycraft around here :P

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    What about Recon (Palladium) and augmenting with Ninja's and Superspies, possibly even Heroes Unlimited (Yeah, they are not comic style heroes, but a few did have near supernatural like powers).

    I will agree with White Wolf's WoD, the system is great and could lend a lot of ease to the rules.

    The old Delta Force RPG would be great to see in action, although I never actually played it. I did hear it shared similarities with Traveller. In the same vein Merc would be an option, although a bit dated for certain. West End's 'Price of Freedom, Roleplaying in Occupied America' should probably mentioned though finding it or any of its supplements might be an act of futility.

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    I ran a Palladium Dark Conspiracy set with the party was playing a group of stranded Marines I have also ran a Recon game with the same rules as well another great game.
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    I'd say Cartoon Action Hour is really the best bet there, IMO. The rules are light enough to be fast, but complex enough to be able to have a variety of different characters.
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    i saw heroes unlimited in there. There are a lot of super soldier concepts in that. Also, if you have it, ninjas and superspies has a lot of "military" builds.
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