View Full Version : Recommend me a system

2008-10-23, 03:53 AM
I love Ravenloft, but I have less and less love for D&D as time goes by.

So, I want to play Ravenloft in a different system. I'd already worked on a D&D 3.5/d20 Modern hybrid, but it wouldn't really do what I want it to, no matter how I twist and shake it.

What I want is a system that's light on combat (absolutely no reliance on tactical movement), allows modelling of D&D-style magics (the classic stuff - fireball, magic missile, cure spells, etc.) - but with the catch that spells don't always work (so a party with a cleric can't actually rely on having any kind of magical healing, but they sure can hope) - and has an easy system for modelling diverse and different monster powers. Skill-based over level- and class-based.

No sort of existing horror mechanics are necessary - I detest mechanics for fear in horror games.

I'm willing to jiggle, shake, and convert, but would prefer something as close to what I want as possible.

My candidates so far include:
- Burning Wheel (not familiar at all)
- True20 (not very familiar; probably too similar to D&D and d20M)
- Fading Suns (I like the basic system; grafting a magic system on it would be hard)
- World of Darkness (I like the Willpower system, but there'd be at least as much work required for the magic system)
- Gumshoe (too free-structured for this purpose)

I've got access to a bunch more systems, but a system being available online for free is a bonus.

2008-10-23, 03:59 AM
my vote is on Burning Wheel. It's a very RP intensive system because of the whole "duel of wits" mechanic.

2008-10-23, 04:00 AM
I'd throw my vote on World of Darkness, but you're right, the magic system is a bit of a problem. However, there's the supplement Second Sight that's focused on psychic powers and ritual magic, which might get you started.

Maybe Savage Worlds? From the test drive rules (http://www.peginc.com/Downloads/SWEX/TD06.pdf), the magic and combat seem pretty close to what you're looking for.

2008-10-23, 04:02 AM
GURPS is my system of choice for ravenloft. While it doesn't have vancian magic as standard (though that can be easily made without houserules [while keeping a chance of failure]), it does allow for spells quite similar to most low level DnD spells. It's combat system ranges from light to complex, depending on the wishes of the GM. (At light it doesn't have tactical combat maps), and the entire idea of GURPS is that you can do /anything/.

2008-10-23, 04:15 AM
Try Witchcraft or All Flesh Must be Eaten. The basic rules of both systems are nearly identical, and it is quite easy to use the rules for a D&D-like game. I use the rules for both Dark Sun and Midnight and I think the rules are better suited for these grittier settings than the original rules, and while I haven't tried to convert Ravenloft, it seems to me that the setting and the Unisystem rules work together quite well.

You can download the Witchcraft Core book (http://www.edenstudios.net/witchcraft/WitchcraftCorebook.zip)for free, which gives the game the best price performance ratio of all the games listed in this thread.

I would recommend All Flesh Must Be Eaten and the Dungeons and Zombies Splatbook, so you have a full substitute of the Fantasy rules, but it is no problem to adjust the free Witchcraft rules to most setttings.

2008-10-23, 10:27 AM
Talk about the answer being right in front of me. AFMBE it is - with Dungeons and Zombies, it looks like I won't even need to change or add any rules, really. Maybe something for corruption checks...

Lord Tataraus
2008-10-23, 10:58 AM
- World of Darkness (I like the Willpower system, but there'd be at least as much work required for the magic system)

I don't think nWoD would require much work for a magic system. If Mage is too much for you you can always just get rid of improvised casting and rework how vulgar magic flares up with a different trigger (possibly percentage based), or just go for the Thaumaturgy section of Second Sight which is has a single merit for every school of magic and simulates low-magic very well. As a bonus, Second Sight also includes a Psychic powers portion and "Reality-Bending Horrors" that include cultist-like horrific rites and vile powers.