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View Poll Results: Favorite Generic/Universal System

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141. You may not vote on this poll
  • d20 Modern

    16 11.35%
  • GURPS

    39 27.66%
  • Basic Role Playing or Mongoose RQ

    12 8.51%
  • Savage Worlds

    17 12.06%
  • Fudge/FATE

    10 7.09%
  • Omni System

    0 0%
  • Unisystem

    8 5.67%
  • Prose Descriptive Qualities

    1 0.71%
  • HERO

    18 12.77%
  • Something else (please explain)

    20 14.18%
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  Click here to go to the first special guest post in this thread.   Thread: Favorite Generic/Universal Systems

  1. #46
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    My vote goes to Spycraft. By default, Spycraft is, naturally, a spy/espionage game. But the back of the book has rules for changing genres, and one of the supplements removes classes... Basically Spycraft 2.0 is a d20 Modern replacement/reboot.

  2. #47
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    I voted BRP. GURPS would be a second place, I love the versatility and gobs of cource material, but it's a little rules-heavy. True20 seems pretty good. I haven't looked at Savage Worlds in a while, sounds like it bears a second look.
    Last edited by Harwel; 05-31-2009 at 01:31 AM.

  3. #48
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    Palladium:

    Because you can go anywhere and be anything. No CCs for it? Make it up. Fantasy, Old West, Mecha, Military, Supers, Ninjas, Espionage, Horror, TMNT, Space Opera, Post Apoc.

    Then you have the ability to affect your character's stats based on skills. You don't like that you rolled a pitiful 3 for your strength? take this skill and make it better! It was the first game I came across with detailed yet still simple mechanics for combat. From AD&D2ed I was able to dodge and parry OMFG!

    Character Classes? Comprehensive. Dragon? Sure. Mega Hero? Right here. Merchant? Check the third shelf.

    Psionics, Super Powers, Magic, Chi abilities
    And for the most part it is point based. I don't have to worry that I had cast x spell 6 times in a day. Again from D&D a bonus.

    I like the stats, good range without being annoying
    IQ-Intelligence
    ME-Mental Endurance: Basis for psionics and psionic defense
    MA-Mental Affinity: Base level of empathy allowing for trust or intimidation
    PS-Physical Strength: Allowing for Carrying and Damage bonuses
    PP-Physical Prowess: Influencing strike parry and dodge bonuses and your base dexterity
    PE-Physical Endurance: Poison saves, Coma/Death saves, and Chi
    PB-Physical Beauty: allowing for Charm/Impress rolls
    Spd-How fast you can run in a second

    It is one of the few and definitely the first role playing game I came across that actually awarded points for being creative, using your skills, coming up with good ideas even if they didn't work, and awards for playing in character.

    I like that I can play a class or I can choose to pick my own skill sets.

    I like that when I am invulnerable nothing but magic and psionics can attempt to hurt me. Not tanks, not being hit with a building, and there is no roll for it, it just is! No ranks. No tests. Even DC and Marvel don't do that.

    One of the criticisms people like to poke at the system with is game balance. But game balance rests with the players and the GMs to decide. The game really is like laying out a line of firearms from a derringer to the Macross Cannon and saying where do we want to play? Do you want to throw tanks like they are made of Styrofoam? Do you want the gritty realism of getting shot once and it actually hurting? Anything you want to do at whatever time or place setting you want and you got the tools right there.

    Palladium was born out of D&D, and now D&D is looking more and more like its progeny.

    I also like WOD and am a bit surprised to see it not listed

  4. #49
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    I am both amused and intrigued that you've picked as your favorite modern/universal game one that I find to be neither modern nor universal.
    Last edited by PhishStyx; 06-07-2009 at 02:43 PM.

  5. #50
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    explain

  6. #51
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    I've heard good things about some of these, but my experience with Savage Worlds has been only good so far. I like the rules-lite, universal experience
    Games: Exalted 2e pre-errata (hiatus), Recruiting for a Sci-Fi/Fantasy game (System TBD) in SF south bay area
    The Dolling Blogs (1, 2, 3 & 4)

  7. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoddessGood View Post
    I've heard good things about some of these, but my experience with Savage Worlds has been only good so far. I like the rules-lite, universal experience
    HARRY DRESDEN WIZARD
    Lost items found. Paranormal Investigations.
    Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates.
    No Love Potions, Endless Purses, or Other Entertainment.

  8. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Killwatch View Post
    explain
    Where should I begin? Perhaps with the unbalanced and often misprinted weapon damages? Or maybe the -10 dodge rule that was, then wasn't, then became a verboten topic on the PMB? Or the more than 75% chance to hit pretty much anything? How about the fact that the only thing even remotely hinting at "universality" among Palladium's games (& with Rifts sometimes even within the game, itself) is the cutting & pasting of the skills and combat sections? How about the fact that only 2 currently in print games use alignments, and the OTHER one is D&D, itself not exactly the bastion of modernized game writing?

    Oh hell, lets just skip to the end and mention that I don't know of any other large game company that not only does not playtest (and I have that fact on the word of not 1 but 4!!! different Palladium authors!!), even the Kevin Siembieda doesn't use the system when he runs games!!
    Last edited by PhishStyx; 06-07-2009 at 02:44 PM.

  9. #54
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    Arrow

    wow that was missing the point all together.. Youd din't address how it wasn't. I read what you didn't like about it. You brought up alignments, but all of their games use alignments. You brought up skills, but all their games use the same skills. You brought up the -10 which is a schism but still does not point to non-universalism.

    and as for your facts, without names or some means to back it up, it means nothing.

    So now that you have argued against my statements by attacking it's merits instead of the point I will discuss the merits

    1) Kevin doesn't game palladium: ok so what? I'm would be surprised if he has cut it out altogether, but I haven't met many players who like playing the same game for decades without breaks. And even softbatch cookies get old after a while. It may be akin to not bringing work home with you.

    2) Non Universalism: I think GURPs does universality the best. But palladium was the first to venture into it, GURPs 1986 and Palladium 1981. So at least give props to Palladium for breaking from D&D and trying to do somethign better and that has lasted. But you really can take any character from any part of the megaverse and drop him into any other part and it is playable. The difference? They might not survive. And I think that is great! I LIKE that you can set the scale yourself.

    3) Skills: So copy and paste? and? I really don't see your point here. Isn't this a good thing? Something to remove any confusion from hey my book says I get this from this skill. But we are going to use the skill from this book instead and you just lost yours. Although they do create new skills depending on the setting. Like in N&SS there is a crap load of expanded martial arts, and orient based skills, of course this might have soemthign to do with it being NINJAS and Superspies, implying some kind of asian martial artsy kind of directionality-ish thingy

    4) Misprinted weapon damages? haven't noticed. The only thing that I have seen is the RPG. However I think it is on the players as I have found that the differences between the M203 that does 1d4x10 and the RPG listed as doing 1d4x100 are different weapons. Otherwise, again they cut and paste. Hell even in the HU Revised ancient weapons list displays a graphic that is in the 1st edition PFRPG.

    5) Minus Ten Rule: Makes sense as firearms and lasers move faster than you and your ability to dodge or parry. Makes armor all the more important. I don't use it but like I said I can see the point. But I didn't really see your argument regarding this. Is it that it exists/existed? or that people have argued about it? IF I am reading you correctly it seems that if somethign is broke or once existed it should always exist so that it shall forever suck? and if this IS the case then you bite your own tail by insinuating that palladium sucks and that since it tried to make itself better it sucks even more by trying something new and finding it doesn't work,...

    6) Ah Alignments: I have never seen the problem with alignments. But for those who do here's a suggestion; don't use them. I know its a complicated idea but if you think long and hard enough you might just get it.
    Now for the pro of alignments: I view them as the characters own core morals. Sometimes it's hard sticking to your principles and sometimes you fail. Agreed I dislike the moniker "Selfish" and prefer D&Ds "Neutral" but I certainly prefer Palladium's alignments. I have moved Aberrant up to "Selfish/Neutral" because while it can be mean, mean isn't evil, it may be, but it is largely self centered and honorable.
    And if you look at the alignment "restirctions" you see that most of them say "may" or "will try". I think it may be a sign of poor RP ability to completely discount alignments out of hand. I see them as avenues to explore and challenge myself as a player, putting myself in someone else's shoes, and not just myself in armor. That kind of playing is good for B&B playing (Booze and Buds).
    Me? I prefer a more cerebral/amateur theatrical experience. The more information you give me on a character the more detail I can use to spin an individual with their own hopes, dreams, secrets, shames, etc. Thusly I have put more stuff in for PC generation borrowing from WOD GURPs and CP2020. So that a character will have a fleshed out PC with history nature disposition and alignment. Can you be a dick and principled character? Sure, and it would be fun finding out what that would look like.
    So alignments are just what I feel as at the core of the character. not the whole story, just there core sense of right and wrong. Can it change? Sure but what would it take for you to give up your core sense of right and wrong?
    But again, I think of it a amatuer acting. you take a ROLE in which you play. If you want to just play yourself then you might as well be playing video games for all the effort or creativity needed to play it.

    7) Play testing: Again back it up. But I haven't seen any problems. Maybe I am missing soemthing or forgetting but I haven't found a whole lot to back up your argument. If they aren't, the game seems to be running fine without it. Maybe you have had some bad experiences with it either as a player or GM, and maybe it was the group. I know that a bad player or a rules raper can ruin a game for some GMs, but they either don't bother me or don't last long in my group so it's a moot point.

    So back to the point; how is it not a universel system?
    I can take a Paladin from PFRPG and put him in Ninjas and Super Spies of Rifts or Macross or TMNT. Of course he might not have the right skills, and if he doesn't adapt quickly will die in MDC envornments but I don't consider it the fault of the game. I LIKE that technology actually advances and that 5d6 weapon in modern times is pretty kick ass but in 500 years one of the smallest arms does 1d4x100 SDC

    Can it improve? Sure, but I haven't come across a better base system to build off of yet. Maybe I will.

  10. #55
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    Have seen this thread on rpg.net? Note that multiple Palladium authors post in that thread to discuss what actually goes on at Palladium book, including why there is no official playtesting.

    However, if you don't want to read the entire thread, here is the watershed post from it. There are a few other sources around, but this one beats pretty much everything else for accuracy
    --- Merged from Double Post ---
    Quote Originally Posted by Killwatch View Post

    and as for your facts, without names or some means to back it up, it means nothing.
    You sure you don't work for Palladium? Perhaps in a voluntary capacity?

    So now that you have argued against my statements by attacking it's merits instead of the point I will discuss the merits
    What does that mean? How else should I debate a topic? Random words? Ad hominems and other fallacies?
    At no point, did I attack you personally like you chose to attack my intelligence below.

    1) Kevin doesn't game palladium: ok so what?
    At his own little mini-convention held in his warehouse, he does NOT run his own system where every other GM that day is apparently supposed to.

    2) Non Universalism: I think GURPs does universality the best.
    I agree there; GURPS does appear to do universal gaming better than anyone else. As far as I can tell whether Palladium or GURPS came first nearly 30 years ago is irrelevant. Nonetheless, Palladium not only doesn't do it the best, it barely even tries. There is no official universal method of making perception tests or any other sort of base Attribute test. There is no universal method of making skill tests. I mean sure, you roll your d100, but after that you're on your own for any hint of results. And there is NO discussion of modifiers to those results.

    3) Skills: So copy and paste? and? I really don't see your point here. Isn't this a good thing?
    No. It is not. The point of writing new books, even when you are including previously written information is to look at that information again and make a new determination about it's usefulness. Simply copying information without looking at it is lazy and makes for bad gaming.

    4) Misprinted weapon damages? haven't noticed.
    Then you haven't been reading your own books.

    5) Minus Ten Rule:
    6) Ah Alignments: I have never seen the problem with alignments. But for those who do here's a suggestion; don't use them. I know its a complicated idea but if you think long and hard enough you might just get it.
    Well look at that, just one person criticized your favorite game and you start in with insults. Congrats, very PMB of you.

    And I love that we come around to the old chestnut argument of Palladium, placing the blame for its problems on the player. I don't like it, so there MUST be something wrong with me (alternately: disagreeing with you means that I MUST not work in the industry, so my opinion is valueless. I'm sure you'll pop that one up later on.) No, alignments are virtually worthless in gaming, and they mark your game as a dinosaur (that would be NOT modern). There are several discussions on this site about alignments

    7) Play testing: Again back it up. But I haven't seen any problems.
    Well, when you blind yourself to them, how could you?
    Good games have fewer house rules or rule fixes, and I don't know of any other game where the game company owners had a semi-public fight with the freelancers over whether a rule should be implemented (refer back to the -10 argument for details on that.)

    So back to the point; how is it not a universel system?
    Apparently, your definition of universal is very different from others' definitions, but sure, lets play it your way.

    So you have your average super and say a Nightspawn/bane, and you drop both of them into Rifts. Which one becomes MDC and which one doesn't, and why?

    Oh yeah one more thing, have you ever tried to make say, Spider-Man or Green Lantern using the Heroes Unlimited rules? Can't do it, can ya? See, I think that's the real reason that Palladium won't allow attempts to be done.


    Can it improve? Sure, but I haven't come across a better base system to build off of yet. Maybe I will.
    Have you looked?
    Last edited by Farcaster; 06-08-2009 at 12:58 AM.

  11. #56
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    Generic, eh? Well, I know I am beginning to sound like a broken record, but again I'd go with Burning Wheel.
    There is no path, traveler; the path is made by walking.
    -Antonio Machado

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    Does anyone have any feedback on Cortex RPG? It's apparently kind of like Savage Worlds, but less pulpy, less minis/battlemat focussed, no playing cards. Does anyone have any hands-on with this? I guess some people have experience with at least, say, Serenity, which is Cortex-based.

  13. #58
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    ok cool
    1) Don't know if that is really bill coffin
    2) It explains a lot about the scheduling
    3) When you said he doesn't even play his own games I miinterpreted it as he was playing other people's games. A less confusing statement would be that he doesn't play at all. As many RPG writers know actually gaming takes a hit when you produce your own game. So I am not surprised that he doesn't. Jolly Blackburn had an article in KODT about what it takes to produce your own game and this was one of the pitfalls.
    4) I will agree that when I notice a poor layout it isn't a surprise
    5) he has a chinchilla?
    6) That may all be true, still like the game. Still universal. and the system may need a revamp, but it's another thing I like about it. The changes are relatively minor throughout the evolution. I mean can you imagine what it would mean for players if they had to buy every very new edition of the books they already have? The entirety of Palladium has 2 editions. D&D? 10 editions (chainmail, white books, D&D, D&D Basic, AD&D1, AD&D2, AD&D2 P&S, D&D3, D&D3.5, D&D 4) and I am sure I am forgetting something. Has D&D gotten better. Yes but nothing drastic enough to make all the editions worth while. The bigges thing was that they got rid of THAC0.
    7) Even if it is Bill Coffin it is only one side of the argument. I don't know what the response or defense might be, or even if there would be but If I was to rant and rave about some guy on an RPG board I could convince them that that person was a complete unreasoning moron.
    8) Have I Looked? I got tons of games sitting on my shelves collecting dust, mainly because I like bits and pieces or gave it a chance and found it wanting and end up using it as source material. Palladium is 1/3, D&D is another third. the final third if my library is indies, WODs, and a bunch of other stuff.
    9) "So you have your average super and say a Nightspawn/bane, and you drop both of them into Rifts. Which one becomes MDC and which one doesn't, and why? "
    If one of them has anything that bumps there SDC for any supernatural reason they generally become MDC. All supernatural damage becomes MDC.

    10) "Oh yeah one more thing, have you ever tried to make say, Spider-Man or Green Lantern using the Heroes Unlimited rules? Can't do it, can ya? See, I think that's the real reason that Palladium won't allow attempts to be done."
    Um yes I can and I have. Back in the day I converted everyone from DC vs Marvel. It took a pinch of creativity but I thought we were in a creative hobby.
    But aside from this, how does this prove/disprove the universalism of Palladium?

    11) Blind myself to problems now you are just taking argumentative short cuts. IO have got tons of edits or did you miss that part where I said that I have found faults but I haven't found anything better. Oh wait you did because you asked if I looked. Do you read what you wright? Does it have problems? Yes. Have I took creative license in the alst thirteen years to fix what I see as problems? Yes Are they major problems? No. Are they tons of minor tweaks to abilities or powers etc that add up to a lot? indeed.

    12) -10 dodge rule. So you don't see either side of that argument? PC survivability vs realism? really? And as for a good game needs fewer house rules, BS. Ok check that. even if a game was perfect, some gamer somewhere would find something to edit or spin in another way. In the core rules for palladium KS encourages players and GMs to change the game to suit them. A good game allows for the player to edit the game because somehow we all ended up with our own ideas and visions. Again, I can't think of a game that I wouldn't want a major overhaul of if I was going to run it. I like WOD but its a rip off of CP2020 in the way that it works its skills+atts. But it is game evolution, things change, things are tried and die off or prosper. and I think having palladium around as a stable gaming venue is a good thing. Just like having D&D around is a good thing, or Shadowrun, and GURPs.


    13) "Well look at that, just one person criticized your favorite game and you start in with insults. Congrats, very PMB of you.

    And I love that we come around to the old chestnut argument of Palladium, placing the blame for its problems on the player. I don't like it, so there MUST be something wrong with me (alternately: disagreeing with you means that I MUST not work in the industry, so my opinion is valueless. I'm sure you'll pop that one up later on.) No, alignments are virtually worthless in gaming, and they mark your game as a dinosaur (that would be NOT modern). There are several discussions on this site about alignments"

    Who hurt you? And that was not even the start of an insult. PMB of me? Somethng confuzzles me at this point. If you dislike palladium so much why are you going there? I don't like 4e, I don't go to 4e boards. The only thing I would have to say is that I don't like this game, and that would be pretty dickish of me. Secondly, what kidn of sense does it make that, correct me if I am wrong, you are saying that I am defending a game blindly against attacks. And if everyone on PMB is doing so then they are arguing against themselves. So they are both attackign and defending their game with blind fervor. OR what might make more sense is that you have been attacked for saying something like palladium sucks on a PMB and was thusly attacked for attacking and now you are saying how vitrious PMBers are because you attacked them on their home soil.

    Virtually worthless? Ok what are the good points about it?
    So there are several discussion on alignments? really? wow I am "shocked" Again I think it is a misinterpretation of what alignment is or could be. I don't think that enough players give enough thought to it.

    Not working in the industry makes your opinion valueless? no your lack of real arguments is what makes your opions almost worthless. I think its funny that you think I might say that . No everyone can have an opinion and I know all too well that no matter where your are or where you come from that you have an equal chance of being a moron (not you specifically, but I think I have to point these things out now)

    and I don't see where I began the insult with that line. Now maybe you have gone long and deep into thought about characterizations, character psychology, personal habits, sociology, etc and considered it all bupkis, but I don't know you and haven't heard why you might think that, other than your adamant opinion that it is a dinosaur of a concept.

    14) kind of pointless if I don't read my own books. Can you point to something? and is it really all that surprising that mistakes are made in editing?

    15) Nope don't work for palladium. Submitted stuff but my works would require a whole rewrite and I understand that would piss a lot of players off. I gave it a shot and would have been upset withmyself if I didn't. So, by your line of thinking, I should probably be on your side of the hater fence.

    16) "No. It is not. The point of writing new books, even when you are including previously written information is to look at that information again and make a new determination about it's usefulness. Simply copying information without looking at it is lazy and makes for bad gaming."
    wait what? So at one point you are condemning palladium for not being universal, at another for differing weapon damages, and now saying that changing what skills do is a good thing? Listen the only major skill lists that I find are in the core books. Why? Because if all you want to play is is Rifts adn don't want to buy the mega-core palladium book you don't have to. Unlike D&D and other games where you need to by the core book and the setting book, the core setting book has everything you need. Yes its redundant if you have more than two or three setting books, but if you are new to it then it's a complete game. Everything else is cake. Seriously? YOu don't see the benefit in that? Spending less money to play a game? Buying one book and calling it a day?

    And isn't making up new descriptions for old skills well stupid? I mean how many descriptions do you need for skills like Pilot Auto? Pilot Race Car? Horsemanship? Computer Ops? Hacking? Weapon Proficiency Rifle? Hand to Hand Martial Arts? What exactly here were you hoping to edit or alter without making a new skill? ISn't it nice to know that if I have WP Sword in ancient england that that won't means something else in another setting? If I know ninjitsu in Rifts: Japan that it means the same thing in Heroes Unlimited? Honestly and truthfully what is your grievance there? If you need a new skill for seomthing the books allow you to make it up. Explain please.

    17) "Nonetheless, Palladium not only doesn't do it the best, it barely even tries. There is no official universal method of making perception tests or any other sort of base Attribute test. There is no universal method of making skill tests. I mean sure, you roll your d100, but after that you're on your own for any hint of results. And there is NO discussion of modifiers to those results."
    So your real argument isn't that it isn't universal which it is, but that it lets you decide how hard things are on a "wildly complicated" 1-10 scale??? Now agreed I have modified this to 100+ and all, but The fault isn't with the "penalties", it's with the cap I believe.

    18) As for the low intelligence. If I were to say that people wwith purple shirts have small penis' would that offend you? Probably not unless you knew that you were wearing a purple shirt, but hopefully you would be ok with havign a small penis. Now to kind of reach back, did I just say that you had a small penis or was this an example? In reality no I did not say you had a small penis. In perception I guess I may have.
    The "you" mentioned in the previous post could have been a general you unless you are feeling a bit self conscious about something or if you have been too use to being attacked,....

    19) Merits: You are right that was poorly worded. what I meant was was that you were not providing actual points to argue simply arguing in a is not/am soft opinions to kind of way. My apologies. I am sorry for the confusion.

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    No, you pretty much called me stupid and now want to back out of the name calling part of it while still insinuating that I'm less intelligent than you because I don't like Palladium.

    Go back to drinking your kool-aid.
    Last edited by PhishStyx; 06-07-2009 at 02:41 PM.

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    Could we please try to keep this thread civil?

    Incidentally, the thread is "Favorite Generic/Universal Systems", not "Why Anyone Who Likes/Doesn't Like System X is an (Insert Insult Here)". Even after reading these respective screeds I don't know whether Palladium is a good system or not, although at this point I don't care.

    Man, I thought the D&D edition wars were bad.

    If you want to debate the merits and flaws of Palladium or any other system further, take it to another thread where uninterested parties can safely ignore you. Anyone who tries the "he started it" defense will get a serious Time Out.
    "On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament], 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."
    - Charles Babbage (1791 - 1871)

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