View Full Version : Alternity

2010-03-17, 01:52 AM
I'm a first-time GM and for my first campaign I'm running an Alternity campaign. I've broken away from some of the story elements in the books and replaced it with my own flavor and all that cause I have a lot of story I want to get in. I was just wondering what all of you thought of Alternity. As a story base, mechanic system? And so on and so forth.

2010-03-17, 02:33 AM
I never use published campaigns, so I can't comment on Alternity's.

I found the mechanics a bit cumbersome - all those extra dice? We ended up just using a fixed bonus or penalty.

I liked the skillsystem - having different learning curves for skills seems more realistic thanthe 1:1 system in D&D 3.5 - although this needs much more book keeping...

Lastly, we found it was really hard to succeed at anything with low level characters. You might find it works better at mid level. Very much like D&D for that.

2010-03-17, 03:18 AM
I enjoyed it a lot, although it was almost always tech level 6-8 I think. Is there anything in particular you would like to know?

Kurald Galain
2010-03-17, 04:32 PM
I was just wondering what all of you thought of Alternity. As a story base, mechanic system? And so on and so forth.

My opinion? The story base is mostly D&D in space, and the mechanics are unnecessarily complex and clunky (e.g. the arbitrarily variable costs for skills, and the silly step dice). I'm frankly surpised how often it comes up on these forums recently, given that there are so many better scifi RPGs available.

2010-03-17, 04:36 PM
Maybe you could chalk it up to my lack of familiarity with the system, but I thought GURPS did everything it did, but better. Mechanics felt like they were just thrown together as an after thought sometimes.

2010-03-17, 04:39 PM
i played a small alternity campaign right after it came out and i enjoyed it. the system was a bit odd certainly, but back then it was fun :) i'd say if you've already got the books, go wild, but i dunno if i'd go searching for the books at this point, if you don't have the books, just play gurps.

2010-03-17, 05:38 PM
Alternity's still good if you like throwing in off-the-cuff descriptions for the frequent amazing successes and critical failures, and you hate math so much that GURPS scares you.

Are you playing with the Star Drive setting or one of the other 2 - Dark Matter or Gamma World?

2010-03-17, 06:08 PM
Just wanted to discuss experiences with it :)

I myself am not using one of the published settings, just using the old imagination. Taking a bit from the race descriptions and whatnot obviously, but aside from that its mainly on its own.

I do find the extra dice to be a bit extra to keep track of myself, but I think its been going pretty well. I'm actually playing this with our former D&D group, so I have two of my past DMs with me and they both think I'm doing really well.

Zeta Kai
2010-03-17, 06:24 PM
Here's how I rank Sci-Fi/Space Opera systems mechanically, from best to worst:

Star Wars SAGA Edition
Traveler D20
Some old Star Trek TNG RPG from back in the 90's that I forget the name of

That's how I feel about the rule-set. It's mechanically worse than a system that I can barely remember.

2010-03-17, 11:21 PM
Wow, thats some dislike.

I myself have my Serenity book buried around here somewhere, but I've never actually used the system itself. One of my players is a big fan of GURPS and I have heard about Traveller actually. I don't think Alternity is to bad at all, but hey, I also havent seen much in the way of sci fi systems. I'm still pretty new to tabletop.