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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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[ERROR] No.37392986 [Reply] [Original] [4plebs] [archived.moe]

For the longest time I have craved a game in a science fiction setting that is not Warhammer, Star Wars, or Shadowrun. I tire of magic, of knights or samurai, and I long to create something that is like Grand Theft Auto on a distant colony world. Are there any systems for a sci-fi game where the setting itself is not so deeply entwined into the rules that I will have to build a whole new system to see my vision played?

>> No.37393033


>Are there any systems for a sci-fi game where the setting itself is not so deeply entwined into the rules that I will have to build a whole new system to see my vision played?

Traveller if you just ignore psychics. Keep in mind it is a very "realistic" system, a lot of players will not like it. It's not bogged down with realistic math mechanics, just realistic social structuring, laws, paying upkeep, being maimed by any energy weapon and needing cosmetic surgery after 1 fight if you survived.

>> No.37393179

Any others you can think of?

>> No.37393301


Stars Without Number is basically a mashup of Basic D&D with Traveller. It's less lethal, so it may work better for a GTA:Space game.

GURPS could probably do it as well, I hear gun combat in GURPS is awesome.

>> No.37393442


As a note on realism, this extends to its take on weaponry and combat. Higher tech/more unusual weapons don't really have interesting properties, they're just straight up better at killing people. Combat is bland and to the point. There is a wide variety of equipment available, but much of it consists of weapons with slightly different magazine sizes and damage outputs.

>> No.37393507

rogue trader

>> No.37393514

In big sloppy globs I thank you. As always, /tg/ gets shit done.

>> No.37393546

>Not Warhammer
>Rogue Trader


On topic, what about Eclipse Phase?

>> No.37393934

Play spirit of the century. But in space.

>> No.37393999

If you go with Fate you have several options. Diaspora is a bit of a harder take on scifi as far as travel and space combat is concerned. Starblazer Adventures is a bit pulpier. Atomic Robo is a bit more current take on the Fate ruleset, and the only thing it's missing is rules for space travel.

Diaspora doesn't have any "frills", and all the extra shit in SBA and Atomic Robo are meant to be modular so you can take or leave what you will depending on what you're doing with your game.

>> No.37394047

The warhammer 40k is that huge and all encompassing. It was made by a bunch of nerds and their interminable penchance for shoving nerdy media in every nook and cranny.

>> No.37394090

>Stars Without Number

Especially if by GTA-like you mean a sandbox style game of randomly generated settings, loot and adventures.

And just to make your life even easier, here's an online tool that generates a sector for you: http://www.emichron.com/swn/

>> No.37394120

>That awful feeling when you're once again reminded that not only is there no One Roll Engine space opera game that uses Reign's company rules for galaxy-spanning intrigue and a chapter on one-roll spaceships, but there's not even such a game in development

>> No.37394121

>stars without number
>eclipse phase

These are your best bets. Just ignore every splat for eclipse phase that aren't rimward and sunward. It gets into some stuff about sexuality in a world where changing your gender/sexual identity is as easy as switching to another body, and unfortunately most people are autists and unable to deal with the subject. I'll admit it handles it poorly, but brings up some relatively interesting lines of reasoning.

>> No.37394227

GURPS was fun for space stuff.

Watch out, though, high tech weapons will kill you dead faster than you can say "that's not how lasers work!"

>> No.37394231

holy fuck why isn't there any cyberpunk esque gta game, that could be so motherfucking good.

>> No.37394601


Because the general public doesn't like cyberpunk because they don't like the themes.

>> No.37394673

But literally any cyberpunk RPG is essentially a GTA-style sandbox if the players want it to be. Hell, this is basically what Shadowrun is by default.

>> No.37394677

That's over-simplifying. Cyberpunk is a visual aesthetic more than anything else. It simply doesn't translate well into P&P. Just look around /tg/. Start a thread about cyberpunk? It's just an art-dump, and an inconsistent one at that.

>> No.37394784



Notes and material from an old campaign I used to run. May be relevant to your interests.

>> No.37394858

>Cyberpunk is a visual aesthetic more than anything else
Most would argue that the core of cyberpunk is corporate oligarchy, dehumanization, and widespread dependence on the black and grey markets to get the things people need to get by.

Take away the dystopian elements and you end up with postcyberpunk.

>> No.37394897

If you want to see more this game plays out I would recommend itmejp's Rollplay: Swan Song series. It's some good stuff and the DM does some interesting things to make it feel like a cinematic experience

Here is a link to episode one and the playlist

>> No.37394926

What about cyberpunk 2020?

>> No.37394937


You should never want an interactive collective story telling activity to be cinematic. You have missed the point of the medium entirely.

>> No.37394955

sorry that I haven't clarified being in /tg/ and all, but I meant game as in vidya game.

>> No.37394956


I don't play with barbies.

>> No.37394991

literally any setting free rules system. Savage Worlds, FATE, others people have mentioned.

>> No.37394997


>> No.37395046

Cinematic for the viewers, not the players. He references movie-style transitions in order to move from player to player within the game to represent everyone getting their turn to roleplay.
ex: As Kovacs gets the shit kicked out of him by security, crossfade transition to Sicarian waking up

>> No.37395072



Now that you mention it, it would be badass to have something with GTA's style of carnage-enabling sandbox with tons of RPG-style character customization in a setting that's a shameless amalgam of the original Robocop movies and Johnny Mnemonic (mainly for the cyberdolphins and Dolph Lundgren as a psychotic priest).

>> No.37395167


Spotlighting is also a terrible way to design P&P RPGs. Seriously this is basic game design stuff, the issue is most people actually established in the industry entrenched themselves before game designed was an understood and taught at a university level.

>> No.37395189

Cyberpunk 2020...Barbies? I am not making the connection

>> No.37395199

>Are there any systems for a sci-fi game where the setting itself is not so deeply entwined into the rules that I will have to build a whole new system to see my vision played?

I really like the Heavy Gear setting. It has that combination of high and low tech used future aesthetic, kind of like Cowboy Bebop/Firefly/Aliens.

Most of the action takes place on the extra solar planet ofTerra Nova, centuries after the original colonies were abandonned by their government/corporate patrons and left to fend for themselves as shit went down back on earth.

While the game generally focuses on wars fought between the major super-powers and focuses on "gears"- mecha that are about 15 feet tall- the setting has lots of details BEYOND them. Hell, gears aren't even the most powerful vehicles in the game, and fill a role between infantry and larger vehicles like tanks, IFVs, and the like.

But beyond that, the folks behind the game did an awesome job of building an interesting world with its own politics, religions, customs, and even products (complete with jingles).

The first game I ever played in the setting saw us as a bunch of high tech spies. It played out like some wierd mishmash of Mission Impossible and Ghost in the Shell.

In another game I ran, the party were gear pilots in some remote base, and they spent just as much time out of their mecha as they did inside. They had to deal with shit like discrimination within the ranks, dealings with the locals whose town their base occupied, and hunting so that they had something better to eat than rations. It was like Full Metal Jacket + 8th MS team.

In another, game I played in, we were all "gear police". Just think of Patlabor and you can pretty much sum up how the campaign went.

The mechanics for the game are really universal and effects based, so it's easy to adapt the setting to your system of choice.

>> No.37395216

What do you mean by "Spotlighting"?

>> No.37395242

So how do you handle a split party? Just have them all shout their actions simultaneously?
He doesn't go from person to person if they're together, that would be fucking retarded. Considering this is a show with dozens of thousands of viewers, I'd have to say you should probably watch at least one session before asking people on an anonymous board to explain dozens of hours of content to you in detail.

>> No.37395263


One of the edition for the game used barbies dressed up in cyberpunk costumes for artwork instead of hiring artists. The company was already in financial trouble and the book was not well received.

Also the game was terrible aside from that. It wore style over substance like it was a badge of honour and well, a lot of people didnt like that.

>> No.37395375

that must have been 2013...which I never played

>> No.37395384


Spotlighting, the way I meant it (maybe not what the other poster meant) is when you design elements of the adventure around specific character's abilities with the expectation the party will pick up on who is supposed to be able to solve what. IE: The face talk to the dude, the sneaker steals, copies and replaces a key card, etc. This might seem like a normal, even rational way to handle things but the majority of players wont "know their role and shut their mouth" as it were. Everyone is more likely to try to find a way to use their abilities to revolves each situation because they are not thinking like a team. This is why it is better to design adventures with only the loosest idea of party abilities in mind and not assume any one person will be the one doing a given task.


I handle split parties by scheduling separate sessions and the metagame agreement that the players wont spilt the party in the middle of sessions.

>> No.37395454

>I handle split parties by scheduling separate sessions and the metagame agreement that the players wont spilt the party in the middle of sessions.

This sounds awful. Your players know they'll never be separated during a session? Gee, I bet that bit of crazy meta info never influences anything.

Honestly, all your advice so far sounds terrible. "Don't rely on people being able to shut up and act like a team" Well of course they fucking won't if they never need to.

>> No.37395498

Spotlighting is the idea that as long as everyone gets their time in the spotlight there's nothing wrong with the game. PCs in games designed with spotlighting as the primary balance mechanism end up as one-trick ponies.

There's a couple of core problems with this.

The first is that there are some aspects of the game that everyone will be involved in regardless of whether or not they can contribute meaningfully (like combat). This ends up with people taking up time doing nothing important to the outcome, and their presence in the situation is merely a complicating factor for the people who are built to contribute in the context.

Past that, not all spotlights are created equal. If someone builds a stealthy character, they may only get to use their skillset once every few sessions, and even then it'll probably only take up about an hour of game time. But combat? In most games that'll take up several hours at a time and happen with far greater regularity than sneaking.

Ideally, a character should be able to contribute meaningfully in most scenes in which they are present, with routine occasions to feel awesome about character building choices. Being rendered irrelevant to a scene should be a matter of player choice, not about looking at numbers on the sheet and realizing that there's not a damn thing you can do that would be of any use at all. This doesn't mean that everyone in combat should be a murder machine, but it does mean that people not built to be Killfuck Soulshitter should have ways to not be a liability to those that are as well as interesting things to do - either shooting mooks or maybe doing something involving scenery or some specialized part of their own skillset, like hacking the police dispatchers to keep the cops from showing up until the fight's done and you're gone.

>> No.37395511

Except that definition of spotlighting has nothing to do with the example that was given.

Also, scheduling separate sessions wouldn't work in the context of a show that is streamed live weekly.

>> No.37395565

Like anyone would ever let the actual circumstances get in the way of armchair-dming and designing on /tg/.

>> No.37395652


>This sounds awful. Gee, I bet that bit of crazy meta info never influences anything.

As opposed to half the party is sitting around unengaged? After it took 4 weeks for the 6 of us to have the same day off to play? Even if it influences them it's better than the alternative, I did used to split the party and it always ended up in half the players feeling like they are wasting their time.

>Well of course they fucking won't if they never need to.

What about anything I said implies they are not encouraged to act like a team?

>Except that definition of spotlighting has nothing to do with the example that was given.

Except that is the definition of spotlighting in game design. The other poster was using words they do not understand then.

>Also, scheduling separate sessions wouldn't work in the context of a show that is streamed live weekly.

Well you only have the autists willing to watch it to blame for that.

>> No.37395756

>Spotlighting is the idea that as long as everyone gets their time in the spotlight there's nothing wrong with the game.

Not it isn't. It's the idea that everyone deserves a chance to shine and that no one person should hold all the attention to the detriment of others.

Spotlighting doesn't mean that just because you AVOID that issue doesn't mean your game is devoid of all other flaws. It doesn't even mean that the issue of sharing attention is the ONLY thing that matters.

It's more or less the opposite of giving all your attention to the spotlight hog, who tries to insert their speciality into every single situation in order to dominate it, and if that's not possible, steer what's going on to focus on them.

>> No.37395805


Bypassing this issue seem like a lot more work than most GMs will want to do. I mean the majority still don't even grasp that not every genre belongs in this medium.

>> No.37395826


Telling with difficult players is not part of the game's design. It is part of the GMs job, something many GMs are lacking in the willingness to do to be perfectly frank.

>> No.37395867


I think you missed his point. He is ridiculing the idea. Spotlighting doesn't work and never has. It's simply being perpetuated by game designers who got into this field before it was actually well understood too old to change their ways.

>> No.37395901


The vast majority of GMs are not qualified to to their job and to be honest it is what will kill this hobby. Without in industry accreditation, standards and a union, GMing will never be more than a pile of shit with a few flecks of gold in it, which in the end is going to be doom of this hobby when CRPGs take it to the next level with better AI game masters.

>> No.37395906

I think I understand what you are saying. Just because a bad idea is used well sometimes doesn't mean it's not a bad idea.

>> No.37395944

Dear lord get off your high horse. As a GM I've had plenty of players ruin my games, I want those fuckers to have to get accredited too if I have to.

>> No.37395973


No high horse about it. I'm stating facts. GMs make or break this hobby regardless of the system they are running and far too many of the people GMing don't understand what they are doing well enough.

>> No.37395988


....it is suppose to be a game.... for fun....

>> No.37395990


>> No.37395991

Guys plz stop fighting. Can we go back to talking about sci-fi?

>> No.37396013

Why is all the pressure on GMs, players are much more likely to ruin any individual game simply because there are more of them. It should be a responsibility on both sides.

>> No.37396025

No! We're angry now.

>> No.37396033


It isn't sustainable as just a game for fun. It takes way too much effort and time to GM once you are past high school or collage. It should not come as a shock to anyone that we are still learning new things about this hobby given it was only invented 40 years ago and only 2 generations of people have been involed so far.

>> No.37396051

If I have to take a test in order to GM then I want to paid to do so. Obviously I'm a commodity since I passed this difficult test to become a certified GM.

>> No.37396062


There are more of them and thus it is harder to exert control over them. Simple as that.

>> No.37396082

For once we're not angry about elves.

>> No.37396109


And the fact running a proper weekly game takes 10-15 hours of prep work per week you should be paid. GMing well is too involved to do for free in a capitalist society. Your time is too valuable to take on the job of GMing for free.

>> No.37396116

Yeah, that's retarded. Because GMs are a minority they should be punished for doing the hard part of the job by being forced to get acredited while the people who have it easy should be able to just waltz in. This is a fucking gaming hobby, for fun. No one would go for this, they would simply play with GMs without a licensee and call it a day.

Besides, how could you guarantee that a GM is good even if he passed this test? How would the tests be run and regulated? What proof would they have? There is almost no way to make this actually work.

There would be bad GMs with their sticker and good GMs without.

>> No.37396118


>> No.37396140

I was joking, you don't really think this do you? Good luck finding players who will pay you.

This is supposed to be about playing a game with friends, it isn't a fucking job.

>> No.37396143

Similliar problem as OP, i have a system but want to make/use a different story for it, any ideas anons?

>> No.37396147

Nobody's saying the players have no responsibility, but it is fair to say that GMs have to bring way more to the table than anyone else. Players bring their characters and their decisions to the table. The GM brings the rules and literally everything in the game's world that isn't a player character. There are more players than GMs, sure, but the GM has a disproportionately large impact on the game's success or failure.

Moreover, a bad GM can sour people on entire systems. I know from personal experience that fucking around too much with the rules before you know what you're doing will ruin your chances of getting a stable game together down the line. Because of my fuckup in trying to lift rules from Fate: Kerberos Club and apply them to Legends of Anglerre I have four buddies that would need to be literally bribed to ever try a Fate-based game again because they felt that only one skill on their sheet ever mattered. You're pretty much never going to have a situation where people write off entire systems because one player was lazy and didn't bother to learn how his character worked.

>> No.37396164

>Besides, how could you guarantee that a GM is good even if he passed this test? How would the tests be run and regulated? What proof would they have? There is almost no way to make this actually work.

They all said before accreditation was implemented in nearly ever other field that was traditionally self taught.

>> No.37396177

>Moreover, a bad GM can sour people on entire systems.
As can players.

Your anecdote means next to nothing as well, of course there are bad GMs, that doesn't mean they should have to get a fucking sticker.

>> No.37396191

Yes, accreditation works in technical fields. GMing is not a technical field, it's much more akin to an art than anything else.

How would you get a storyteller accredited?

The only thing you could test a GM on is rules mastery.

>> No.37396195


Hate to break it to you.

You may be the problem with the hobby.

That attitude scares others from even attempting to GM, making many who do get stuck GMing forever.

And being forever GM is a problem. How the fuck are you supposed to know how to entertain a player when you never get to play?
Sure you can take your players words for it. . . but more often than not, they are just glad they don't have to GM.

Gm's need encouragement. Some gratitude.
Constructive criticism, and support from the players.

Players can be at fault too. Thinking otherwise leads me to believe you are one of those entitled shits that are a cancer to the game.
I'm sure you're not, just when I hear such things I remember those who said similar things to my face.

>> No.37396204


Then the hobby has truely out lived it's period of relevance. GMing is simply too much work for anyone working full time with familial and occupational responsibilities. Our society is too demanding to have hobbies that are as demanding as part time jobs.

>> No.37396210

Well, you failed your accreditation by virtue of not understanding what it is that makes a gamemaster necessary at all.

>> No.37396226

Nope. 2013 came before the 2020 edition. The black-green barbie edition was called V3.

>> No.37396248

Then don't GM, obviously you aren't cut out for it if you can't find time in your supposedly busy schedule.

A good GM should need no more than an hour an a half to prepare for session. Over planning only hurts the game.

>> No.37396254

>The only thing you could test a GM on is rules mastery.

Not true. Player management can be assessed the same why you teach management in general.

>> No.37396274

That said, the notion that GMs should have to be accredited is insane if it's not hyperbole. It would be better to say that GMs simply need to have a strong understanding that they do matter more than the players in terms of keeping a game going. The GM's fun matters every bit as much as everyone else's, but at the end of the day their workload and expected understanding of the system are both much higher than that of the players.

>As can players.
I would be extremely surprised if a single player in an otherwise OK group can fuck things up so bad that people would never touch that system again. If people are having an otherwise sound system ruined for them, that means we're talking about an issue with arbitration, and that falls squarely on the GM.

But like I said, accreditation for GMs is asshat talk, as is the notion that players have no responsibility at all. I'm just saying that the GM is far more important to the success or failure of a given game than the players.

>> No.37396302

And what are they gonna do? Give you:

>Jim is playing Fagro the elf, he wants to steal from Marcus who's playing Drukin the Dwarf, how do you handle this situation?
This could depend entirely on the tone of the game. Sometimes inter party conflict is encouraged, sometimes it is not. Management works on the concept that there is a goal and everyone should be required to get along to the best of their abilities. In character interactions have no reason to be cooperative if the players don't want them to be.

>> No.37396317


Well I was being serious. Game design is a field, it does have technical aspects and plenty of research has been done on it. It isn't something just anyone can do effectively or naturally. Come back when you have you MA in game design and we can talk on the same level.

>> No.37396322

>I would be extremely surprised if a single player in an otherwise OK group can fuck things up so bad that people would never touch that system again.
You obviously have no read stories on /tg/

>> No.37396337


It's managing the players that makes it a fun sucking waste of time, not any technical aspect of the job.

>> No.37396347

So what's your favorite parts of a sci-fi setting? The space travel? The super advanced technology? The references to modern day things? Anything to move us back on topic?

>> No.37396352

Provide proof that you have a MA in game design now or be called a monumental faggot.

Blur out your name, all we need is a pic of your diploma.

>> No.37396363

Your lifestyle is too demanding, not society.

Wear a fucking condom, stop churning out kids, stop spending so much time eating and you'll have all the time you need.

>> No.37396367

Then find better players, that isn't the GM's fault it's the players and all the more reason that everyone should get a sticker not just the GM.

>> No.37396368


The fact that you think that, instead of knowing that the collective goal is to maximize the enjoyment for the most people possible regardless of individual desires for a certain tone tells me you didn't put enough thought into the situation.

>> No.37396384



>> No.37396400

Yeah, you seemed to have missed the point. Management is taught very differently than what interparty play can be. There is no way to effectively write questions that can be graded in an objective manner for these tests.

>> No.37396430


>> No.37396484

Don't forget timestamp.

>> No.37396504


First of all, if people are being taught at school to blame their players, then the hobby is dead.
What a crock of shit.

>> No.37396507


>> No.37396572

Timestamped m8, you really expect us to believe you? That's even a picture either, it looks like you found that on google images.

>> No.37396590


Problem is that you can restrict player actions the way you can in CRPGs and GMs are not supercomputers.

>> No.37396592

Sure buddy, timestamp or fake.

>> No.37396603

Hahahahaha, holy fuck

I didn't know they gave out degrees for telling people they're have fun incorrectly!

>> No.37396612


My ruse failed. I was talking out of my ass about the MA. Shouldn't have gone that far.

>> No.37396626

Yeah, so fuck off.

>> No.37396627

Yeah, right.

>> No.37396635


so, was it victorian lit?

>> No.37396653


They have been giving out degrees in theology for a long time bro.

>> No.37396670

No computer will ever be as imaginative or able to cope with player's desires, needs, or nonsense as a human mind.

>> No.37396673


Of course not. My actual training is medical administration.

>> No.37396695

No wonder you have no imagination.

>> No.37396722


and in order to do that the human in question needs to not be an over stressed wreck. Something I'm finding to be rarer and rarer these days.

>> No.37396751


It's not imagination. It's a low tolerance for bullshit due to working 50 hour weeks but being kept on salary so they don't have to pay overtime.

>> No.37396836


I would quit.
or move to a country that wouldn't allow me to be treated as a slave.
And your low tolerance of bullshit has made you a terrible bullshitter.

>> No.37396850


>> No.37396999

I've decided to use Stars Without Number, but how does one cut out the psychic class? I want to escape from stanky old wizard battles, and psychics are just another flavor of that.

>> No.37397084


are they necessary?

Must there be one in the party?

If not, black markers would work.
Or ripping the pages out.
Maybe saying; "No."

>> No.37397098

Just ignore them. Psychics are by no means an integral part of the game, you can just ignore completely anything that starts with psy/psi and be fine.

>> No.37397117

From how I've seen them used they have very basic mind-reading powers and a small level of future-perceiving ability.

If you really want to just say that the PCs can't make them because psychics are heavily regulated by the governments of different worlds and are all turned into brainwashed super-soldiers or assassins. You can use that as an interesting plot point too. Or just not use them at all, like they don't exist.

>> No.37397133

The most you would need a psychic for is quick magic HP heals, but you can just homebrew a system by which players gain a tiny bit of HP when patched up with a medkit.

>> No.37397140


Cyberpunk is a collection of themes, not an aesthetic. See: >>37394858

The problem is that the GM determines the themes of a game and the players have to be able to get into the right mindset for cyberpunk. Which is difficult.

>> No.37397447

It was CP2020 3rd Edition.

>> No.37399212


I have a couple copy's of burning chrome on hand for players to take home and read.

>none of them read.

>> No.37401501

Read it to them orally.

The art of the storyteller.

>> No.37403408

>That awful feeling when you're once again reminded that not only is there no One Roll Engine space opera game that uses Reign's company rules for galaxy-spanning intrigue and a chapter on one-roll spaceships, but there's not even such a game in development

Damn it, that sounds like it would be perfect for LoGH-like games too, and could even have been *officially* for it in time for the anime remake.

(Though I haven't gotten my gaming group past playing fantasy games like murderhobos yet, nor have I got any of them watching LoGH yet).

>> No.37404812

I know, right? It could be a wonderful thing. A chapter on different types of FTL and what those types would mean for the astropolitical situation of the setting, rules for combat in zero-G, guidelines on handling space combat that cover everything from Star Wars-style "it's a dogfight in space" to the hard-SF "two specks glint on the edges of sensor range, and a couple minutes later one becomes much brighter, then much dimmer, then silence"... Heck, maybe even toss in a chapter on One Roll Sectors kind of like sector creation in Diaspora.

It could be so damn good, and we don't fucking have it.

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