Monday, 14 August 2017

Endless Highway #RPGaDay2017

14. Which RPG do you prefer for open-ended campaign play?

I do not prefer open-ended campaign play, to be perfectly blunt.

In my experience, I've had much more productive play at my table by changing my focus to a short-game model, where every player at the table knows that they've only got (x) episodes to get their character issues on the table and they'd better play hard to make that happen. I know that in some quarters, this is seen as weird, but it's meant that in the last decade our games have been exponentially better. As an adult, I need my game time to be focused and for shit to get done.

FATE seems like the lazy man's answer to this question, if I were to speculate about a longer-run (but not exactly open-ended) game, because it's a big, flexible toolkit that can easily model all kinds of games. If you've read this page before, you probably already know it's one of my favourites, and I wouldn't hesitate to use it for a lot of games because I have confidence it would work.

CASTLES & CRUSADES would be my pick if I was planning to dive into a long run game in the classic fantasy style, because it does a good job of capturing those traditional D&D feels with a sleeker modern engine. BEYOND THE WALL would be my choice if I wanted less combat and more atmosphere, and generally a feel that's more intimate rather than epic.

If I wanted this hypothetical game to be in space, it would probably work well with STARS WITHOUT NUMBER, a modest game that manages to capture the classic TRAVELLER vibe in a lighter package.

I imagine I could run an ongoing OVER THE EDGE game for a long time, if I was inclined to do so, and not run out of material, but it almost works best as a short-form thing. A strange little confection to cleanse the palate.

I would love to run an ongoing GODLIKE game that played through a substantial chunk of the war, in the style of NIGHT WITCHES, going all the way from boot camp to Berlin.

How's that for a lot of speculation about games I probably won't run?

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