View Full Version : Looking for a System [Sci-Fi]

2008-09-02, 08:22 PM
Hi all. I'm looking for a system that can handle futuristic combat. More specifically, I'd like one that can simultaneously handle mechs, spaceships, orbital stations, and the like. I'd be willing to have a separate system for handling humanoids, but the important things are ships and mechs. Being able to tinker and customize these vessels is very important. Any suggestions?

2008-09-02, 08:24 PM
Well, you can do that in d20 Future (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=d20/article/msrd), but it's not terribly elegant. There are probably better systems for it.

2008-09-02, 08:24 PM
I have heard good things about Heavy Gear (http://www.dp9.com/), but I am only familiar with the Blitz version of the war game rules, and am relying on hearsay with regard to the RPG.

2008-09-02, 08:43 PM
MechWarrior 3rd Edition/BattleTech

If not that, try Alternity.

2008-09-02, 08:50 PM
Heavy Gear. The system it uses (Silhouette) will let you build damn well near anything when it comes to vehicles, and HG includes both a complete, character-scale RPG and a full-blown tabletop ruleset.

2008-09-02, 08:53 PM
Fudge 10th anniversary contains a dogfighting chapter that does plane and fighter ship fighting better than anything else I have ever seen. It also has a vehicles chapter that seems more appropriate to the orbital stations, and mechs would actually probably work best using humanoid rules, of which there are several options. And tinkering and customization is built in, and there are lots of optional stats and such to customize the level of tinkering and customization. For instance you can just have a speed stat, or you can have an acceleration/deceleration stat, or you can have an acceleration stat, a deceleration stat, afterburners, and afterburner acceleration and deceleration. This is just to handle movement here, and you have all these options. Then there are multiple guns, two types of armor and shields, varying missile bay sizes, etc. If you want complexity, or you can just strip it down to speed, maneuverability, armor, shielding, and a weapon or two. There are also unrelated free rules on fudgefactor, and the core rules for people and such are avaliable free online. I think there are a few other free vehicle rules on the fudge list too, although its Fudge Dogfighting which does the job really well. Beautiful space combat rules.

2008-09-02, 11:45 PM
I kinda liked Alternity whilst it existed. I had several fun games using it as a setting. Might be hard finding copies though. It had the misfortune to be published by TSR a couple months before the D20 system came out, and they decided to drop alternity in favor of d20. Oh well.

Mystery Meep
2008-09-03, 12:09 AM
Honestly, BESM 2e seems to be right up your alley--you don't /have/ to emphasize the anime elements--though anime's a great source for things like mech, of course--and it all uses the same (light) rules system, which allows for a great deal of customization.

2008-09-03, 06:24 AM
It wasn't d20 that killed Alternity, it was WotC acquiring the rights to Star Wars. Why publish your own world, when you have a built in fan base for Star Wars?? It was a good business decision, but it sucked for those of us who liked the Alternity system.

I'd check out Alternity. Just about everything can be found for pretty cheap on e-bay, and maybe even cheaper as a PDF download.

2008-09-03, 07:10 AM
Alternity is a great system once you get past the initial learning curve. You can do almost anything with it and its setting materials are really quite good too.

Dragonsfoot has a whole bunch of Alternity stuff at a reasonable price, including some of the rarer books.

2008-09-03, 07:12 AM
If you want some psionics mixed into your sci-fi, White Wolf's old Trinity (formerly known as Aeon) was pretty cool. Storyteller version, not d20.

2008-09-03, 02:16 PM
As long as you don't insist that the system be balanced, you might look into RIFTS; post apocalyptic earth with high tech and magic. you might be able to reign in the balance, but you're better off just trying to keep everyone included as best you can... there's only so much you can do if you have a scholar in un-powered body armor with a handgun and a glitterboy pilot in the same game.

GURPS does reasonably well for gritty high tech in general, though I've never done anything mech related. If you're looking for realism and are willing to do some calculus for managing the vehicles this might be the way to go.

Mark Hall
2008-09-03, 02:25 PM
Jayabalard took my suggestion; Rifts, especially the Phase World books, would seem to be right up your alley. Those Rogue Scholars can also do things like run the guns on a larger robot or spaceship, giving them something to do while your pilot is humming "Highway to the Danger Zone".

2008-09-03, 03:14 PM
Wow, thats a lot of options. I'll try Heavy Gear for the time being, it seems to have the foundation for what I'm looking for. Thanks everyone!