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Thread: What are your favorite (non-D&D) d20 RPGs?

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    What are your favorite (non-D&D) d20 RPGs?

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    Okay, so there's a bazillion d20-based RPGs out there for every conceivable genre and concept. My question is, which are the ones that you've discovered that turned out to be pure gold? Which non-D&D d20 games have you gotten a real kick out of, either just reading them or actually brining them to life on your game table?

    I'm very picky when it comes to anything d20 as I've just generally be burned out and disillusioned with the system and many of its tropes. Part of this is how saturated the RPG market is with d20 stuff, part is how uninspired or how undaring many of those games are to venture beyond the preconceptions that D&D has set out before them. Part of this is likely because I've been in so many d20 games over the past several years of gaming that I've become a little jaded by it.

    However, on those rare occasions when something really creative is done with d20, I become inspired by a sense that all hope is not lost, that this beast of a system really can spawn something impressive and worthwhile. To that end, here are my 3 favorite RPGs to come out of d20:

    1) Mutants & Masterminds: Excellent super hero game that avoids many of the pitfalls of other d20-based supers games by not clinging blindly to D&D conventions. It's also remarkable for its "sandbox" approach to character building, meaning you can do much more than "super heroes" with the game. You can use the game's power system to create just about anything you want, from fantasy, to sci-fi, to horror and more.

    2) Star Wars Saga Edition: I'll admit, I didn't think I'd like this game as much as I do. I'm a grumpy, old codger when it comes to Star Wars RPGs. But when I finally gave it a chance, I was very surprised. It does an admirable job turning the basic d20 engine into something more elegant than its predecessors. Honestly, I'd like to see a version of D&D written from the rules-framework that Saga sports.

    3) Jonathan Tweet's Omega World: Okay, so it's really more of a "mini-RPG" as it was written as a (lengthy) article in Polyhedron magazine and it requires the basic use of a D&D PHB, but it is still one of the outright coolest and most inspired d20 games I've seen in print. The spiritual successor to TSR's Gamma World, it harkens back to a game about sheer excitement and adventure, featuring bizarre powers, grotesque mutants, killer robots and radioactive landscapes.
    HARRY DRESDEN WIZARD
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    Arch Lich Thoth-Amon is offline Cursed by the Gods
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    How 'bout other than D20? If that question was posed, i would admit that i love to play WFRP(warhammer fantasy roleplay), as well as Traveller, and Gamma World... all with the old rules. Sometimes, maytimes actually, D20 just doesnt capture the essence of a certain rpg.

    But in fairness, since you asked for D20? My answer would have to be the Conan/Hyborea system. I havent played it, but would love to more than any other game out there, a this time.

    Thoth-Amon

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    Arch Lich Thoth-Amon is offline Cursed by the Gods
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    I would love to read of your experiences with the 3 systems you mentioned.

    Thoth-Amon

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    Quote Originally Posted by Thoth-Amon View Post
    How 'bout other than D20? If that question was posed, i would admit that i love to play WFRP(warhammer fantasy roleplay), as well as Traveller, and Gamma World... all with the old rules. Sometimes, maytimes actually, D20 just doesnt capture the essence of a certain rpg.
    I agree that I feel d20 has gotten a bit long in the tooth for me in general, so I avoid most d20-based games. I think that thought was part of the impetus for this thread, as I realized that while I disliked (or was at least disinterested) in most d20 RPGs, there were a couple that I felt are worthy of honorable mention for their excellence.

    At your suggestion, I will create a sister-thread called "What is your favorite non-d20 RPG" for the sake of posterity.
    HARRY DRESDEN WIZARD
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    Arch Lich Thoth-Amon is offline Cursed by the Gods
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    I'll keep an eye out for it.

    Thoth-Amon

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    Bureau 13, fresh out of the box (well since April.)

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
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    Whoops, wrong thread. Sorry folks... nothing to see here. Move along! : )
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    Grimwell

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    Quote Originally Posted by tesral View Post
    Bureau 13, fresh out of the box (well since April.)
    Whenever you talk about Bureau 13, I always get a mental picture of Tales from the 13th Precinct for some reason. I'm not familiar with Bureau 13...please elaborate.
    HARRY DRESDEN WIZARD
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    Quote Originally Posted by Webhead View Post
    Whenever you talk about Bureau 13, I always get a mental picture of Tales from the 13th Precinct for some reason. I'm not familiar with Bureau 13...please elaborate.
    First published in the 80s as Stalking the Night Fantastic the game is one of covering for alien and magical events in the "real world". X files before X files. Tri Tac has released the d20 version for the game. The old system was closer to Palladium, I never like the system but love the concept.

    You play an agent of Bureau 13 of the FBI, the paranormal division. You task is to ferret out the destruction aspects of the supernatural and destroy them without the general public becoming aware of what you are doing.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    My favorite game console is a table and chairs.
    The Olde Phoenix Inn

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    Quote Originally Posted by tesral View Post
    First published in the 80s as Stalking the Night Fantastic the game is one of covering for alien and magical events in the "real world". X files before X files. Tri Tac has released the d20 version for the game. The old system was closer to Palladium, I never like the system but love the concept.

    You play an agent of Bureau 13 of the FBI, the paranormal division. You task is to ferret out the destruction aspects of the supernatural and destroy them without the general public becoming aware of what you are doing.
    Interesting-sounding game. I've wanted to do something of the general sort for a while but never had a group that I got into it. Something akin in basic structure to Conspiracy X, Dark Matter, Men In Black, Strike Force Zero, and (interestingly) Tales from the 13th Precinct.

    I may have to give Bureau 13 a peek. Not so much into d20 game systems at the moment, but it may be good just for the ideas.
    HARRY DRESDEN WIZARD
    Lost items found. Paranormal Investigations.
    Consulting. Advice. Reasonable Rates.
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