Saturday, July 2, 2011

Savage Empires

At long last, I've finally gotten my hands on a copy of Savage Worlds: Explorer's Edition, which (at $10) is just about the cheapest mostly-complete RPG in a single book that one can buy. It's certainly enough of a rulebook to get a campaign off the ground, although I suspect that if I want to run something according to my preferred model of long-term epic quests, I'm eventually going to need the Savage Worlds Fantasy Companion as well. But that's for later.

Despite the fact that I'm running a small mega-dungeon right now with Engines & Empires and the Rules Cylcopedia (and having a blast in so doing), I've been dying to take Savage Worlds for a spin. There are lots of things I like about it: mainly the balance of a system that lets characters advance, but doesn't suffer from the inherent problems of D&D's "chumps to gods" model. It's like playing D&D with Epic Six, but the limited power level is hard-wired into the system. (It uses a death-spiral instead of hit points, for example, and magic tends to be more limited and less world-breaking in SW.)