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Lesser-known sci-fi settings

Jd Smith1

Adventurer
So I'm looking into a future sci-fi campaign. I have the rules system, and initially it was going to be a modified Star Wars setting, but after watch the new SW TV series, that came to a screeching halt.

I have no interest in Star Trek or any of it's spin-offs. Coriolis and Traveller are out. Cthulhutech is in the 'rob for scenarios' category. War Hammer 40k is just a bit too expansive in its reach for the moment, although it remains on my dream list.

What my players and I love are gritty decaying star empire settings; we've done the Firefly and Fading Suns settings to death.

Humans-only settings are fine. What I'm looking for is a well-developed, detailed sci-fi setting, preferable of an Empire or culture in grim decline. I already have rules.

If nothing else, I will jam together bits and pieces and use the new Alien RPG star map, but I was hoping that the lesser lights of RPG writing had done the job for me.
 

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shesheyan

Explorer
Spilled Ale Studios
Are you aware of Esper Genesis sci-fi rules for 5e?
 

Jd Smith1

Adventurer
Are you aware of Esper Genesis sci-fi rules for 5e?
I was not. Thanks!
 


Blackrat

He Who Lurks Beyond The Veil
The old D20 Future (D20 Modern supplement) has several ”mini-settings” in it, encompassing various scifi tropes. A few pages describing each setting and their basic premises. There is at least a Starship Troopers type setting, a galactic community setting in the likes of SW/ST, and an eldritch horror in space ala Alien. Each is a bit generic and bare bones, but really good to build upon.
 

shesheyan

Explorer

Bagpuss

Adventurer
Can I ask why Traveller is out? Too Space Opera?

They might like Traveller:New Era, which is Traveller after a collapse while it is technically the same setting it is very, very different in tone and theme.

Also 2300AD which is a hard sci-fi setting very well developed as well. No gravity plating, the main real change is FTL drive via "Sutterwarp" there is no FTL communication however.
 

Jd Smith1

Adventurer
Can I ask why Traveller is out? Too Space Opera?

They might like Traveller:New Era, which is Traveller after a collapse while it is technically the same setting it is very, very different in tone and theme.

Also 2300AD which is a hard sci-fi setting very well developed as well. No gravity plating, the main real change is FTL drive via "Sutterwarp" there is no FTL communication however.
I've played a lot of Traveller, but its has too little detail in many areas and too much in others. Just not the sort of thing I want to GM again. I will be using some of their old sups.
 

"Deadlands: Lost Colony" for Savage Worlds Adventure Edition. It's literally the Old West in space, if you dig the feel of Firefly. I backed on Kickstarter, but I don't know if they PDF is available for general purchase yet.
 

practicalm

Explorer
If you are looking for settings consider Space Opera's star atlases

There are at least 2 empires that would work

Take the Mechwarrior universe without the mechs.

The Expanse could work if you ignore the events of the 8th book

Dark Matter (TV Show) could work if you wanted to work with corporate warfare

If you don't want space flight you can try Reign of Steel world book from GURPS
GURPS Vorkosigan would work as well for resisting the Barrayan empire or the crime syndicates of Jackson's Whole, or the Cetagandan Empire

Stargate has the Goa'uld, Wraith, Replicators or Ori to fight
 

Jd Smith1

Adventurer
Are you aware of Esper Genesis sci-fi rules for 5e?
OK, looked over the free stuff. Some interesting points, but I'm not interested in magic or major psi powers. But there are a couple interesting points I might look into adding.
 


Eltab

Hero
Alternity's Star*Drive setting.
My knowledge of Alternity is poor (introduced via Gamma World, the combination did not feel the same) but the SD supplement I found at the library triggered my interest.
 


shesheyan

Explorer
OK, looked over the free stuff. Some interesting points, but I'm not interested in magic or major psi powers. But there are a couple interesting points I might look into adding.
Having stats for weapons and equipment is nice. Less work. Psi powers could work for me as it is an old school sci-fi trope. Magic definitely not.
 

Mythological Figures & Maleficent Monsters

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