What Science Fiction Games are being played these days?

jdrakeh

Hero
Forgotten as it didn't leave an impression, or forgotten you hadn't had a chance to read through 400+ pages? ;)

The latter. :) The PDFs are absolutely gorgeous and the very first PDFs I've read that sell me on landscape format (I think most PDFs formatted for landscape viewing look very amateurish). I've just been very focused on OSRIC/AD&D this year, meaning that things like Alpha Omega and Traveller haven't been receiving my full attention.
 

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Garnfellow

First Post
I've been having crazy fun with Mongoose Traveller. I haven't bought many of the Mongoose supplements, though I can say their Spinward Marches book is excellent.

The beauty of MGT, though, is that it plays very well with classic Traveller and MegaTraveller material. I bought some of Marc Miller's CD-ROM compilations and have gotten enough gaming goodness to last me several years.
 

Votan

Explorer
I've been having crazy fun with Mongoose Traveller. I haven't bought many of the Mongoose supplements, though I can say their Spinward Marches book is excellent.

The beauty of MGT, though, is that it plays very well with classic Traveller and MegaTraveller material. I bought some of Marc Miller's CD-ROM compilations and have gotten enough gaming goodness to last me several years.

Yeah, I really like the Traveller character generation system. It's better than I remembered due to the zero level skills that have been added in. Sadly, I am having trouble convincing modern players that random = good in this case as people are too focused on hyper-optimization.
 

Aryoche

Explorer
Well after reading the "quick start", and the sample from both the main rules and the encounter book, I pulled the trigger and ordered the dead-tree versions from the publisher. (Nice bundle deals they have!) Even if it turns out I don't care for the system, there is a plethora of material there to steal for other game systems.

I just hope it ships out fairly quickly. I see they are in the process of upgrading their forums and website.


The latter. :) The PDFs are absolutely gorgeous and the very first PDFs I've read that sell me on landscape format (I think most PDFs formatted for landscape viewing look very amateurish). I've just been very focused on OSRIC/AD&D this year, meaning that things like Alpha Omega and Traveller haven't been receiving my full attention.
 

The Green Adam

First Post
Yeah, I really like the Traveller character generation system. It's better than I remembered due to the zero level skills that have been added in. Sadly, I am having trouble convincing modern players that random = good in this case as people are too focused on hyper-optimization.

I've been confronted with this situation as well, although I have enough old schoolers in the group to help me sell it.

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Votan

Explorer
I've been confronted with this situation as well, although I have enough old schoolers in the group to help me sell it.

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Ironically, I see the lack of optimization as a major plus of the system. I am not sure that the current focus on character power leads to the most interesting games. I see this as doubly true in Science Fiction where exploring or trading might be a much more interesting focus than who can take out a company of marines with a pen-knife.
 

Khairn

First Post
I'm surprised that no one has mentioned Dark Heresy and Rogue Trader by FFG. If you are a fan of Warhammer 40K, or like your sci-fi dark 'n gritty, these 2 games might very well scratch that itch. The price for the books is high, but their production values are even higher.

For those who like D20, Operation Dawningstar was one of the very best sci-fi games I've had the joy to read and GM. Simply outstanding.
 

Hussar

Legend
Khairn - while I haven't played those games, the art for them is AWESOME. I'm loving the artwork in Dark Heresy and Rogue Trader.

I also have a pdf copy of Future Nexus. I read through about half of it. Not a bad system, although a bit too setting happy and a bit dated now.
 

Votan

Explorer
I'm surprised that no one has mentioned Dark Heresy and Rogue Trader by FFG. If you are a fan of Warhammer 40K, or like your sci-fi dark 'n gritty, these 2 games might very well scratch that itch. The price for the books is high, but their production values are even higher.

I have stared at Rogue Trader a bit. My first instinct was "Dune" but I have not reviewed the rules in detail. Still, the art was pretty nice and there seemed to be a lot of promise in what I did see browsing. It might make it onto my systems to explore list.
 

Aryoche

Explorer
Dark Heresy and Rogue Trader are both fine pieces of work, with amazing production values, which carries through on practically all the supplements. It really takes a bit of work to get past the "large army" mentality of 40K to bring it, at least with the groups Ive ran it for. Everyone wants to be a unstoppable "Space Marine". :erm:

It's a shame Dawningstar and Helios are OOP now, I managed to get the core rules, but the prices for Helios Rising now are crazy! (at least in hardcopy).


I'm surprised that no one has mentioned Dark Heresy and Rogue Trader by FFG. If you are a fan of Warhammer 40K, or like your sci-fi dark 'n gritty, these 2 games might very well scratch that itch. The price for the books is high, but their production values are even higher.

For those who like D20, Operation Dawningstar was one of the very best sci-fi games I've had the joy to read and GM. Simply outstanding.
 

Eclipse Phase is teh awesome!

I got the pdf free (and legally!) and I'm getting the hardcover very soon. Even though I most likely will never get to play it, I must own the hardcover. It's just that cool!
 


Aryoche

Explorer
Alternity is a great system, that unfortunately got killed off with the licensing of Star Wars, well before it had a chance to take off. It's proudly displayed on my shelf.

Eclipse Phase seems like an interesting concept, I managed to grab a hardcopy a couple weeks back, but haven't had a chance to really dig into it.

As a side note, my dead-tree copies of Alpha Omega showed up yesterday, much earlier than I expected knowing how our postal system works here. I've got to say, these books are downright impressing. The whole production value is amazing, and the customer service is top-notch. Mindstorm Labs leaked a little bit of info on Facebook stating there are a bunch of new adventures and products coming after the first of the year, and currently have a discount code for ordering online! /end pimping.



When it comes to Sci-Fi, it's all about Alternity.
 

jdrakeh

Hero
For Cyber Monday, I bought a PDF of Space Opera on RPGNow and it looks like I may be playing some Morrow Project soon (using the original rules).
 

Kafen

First Post
Eclipse Phase is teh awesome!

I got the pdf free (and legally!) and I'm getting the hardcover very soon. Even though I most likely will never get to play it, I must own the hardcover. It's just that cool!

I am doing a Bolo themed game around the Eclipse Phase engine. It is mostly email based with military players. But, the system plays very well. The license model and free PDF is part of the thing that makes it work for my group - some of my players are literally in the middle of a warzone and can not exactly lug around a book. The PDF option is great on that point.

I will be picking up the hardcover for this one.
 

Plane Sailing

Astral Admin - Mwahahaha!
One generic Sci-Fi system that hasn't been mentioned yet is Basic Role Playing recently released by Chaosium. Definitely worth a look.

Now, if anyone fancies playtesting my essentially complete OGL science fiction RPG called "Starguild", drop me a line. It is a 160-odd page illustrated PDF with systems for handling social conflict and various forms of 'dramatic conflict' as well as combat on personal, vehicle and starship scales.

It would be very helpful for me to get feedback from people trying to use it with no input from me at all!

Cheers
 


Paka

Explorer
The scope is just too big. The culture is just too complex. Sci-fi games die because they are overwhelming. We expect to much of them and when we get it, we don't know what to do with it.

Scaling it down into bite-sized chunks is definitely important.

I'm currently playing Diaspora, and the Story Hour link is over here.

The first step of the game is making a star cluster of half a dozen or so systems linked by slipstream gates. Neat stuff.

My other science fiction game of choice is Shock: Social Science Fiction and have had some real fun with it but it is not too traditional in its mechanics. In Shock:, we begin the game by coming up with the shock, or how the science fiction world we are about to play in is different from the present, then we cross-list those with issues, ripped from the headlines and from the players' brains and at the crux of those two things are the player characters.

It is fun but it is a different kinda game, with everyone playing a protagonist and an antagonist, taking on both player and GM roles, making the game more like a series of linked short stories.
 

Khairn

First Post
It's a shame Dawningstar and Helios are OOP now, I managed to get the core rules, but the prices for Helios Rising now are crazy! (at least in hardcopy).

Very true, but thankfully there are the pdf's. Dawningstar is hands down the best D20 Future book published. Period. It's mix of hard sci-fi logic in a setting that had elements of Firefly (Serenity), Earth Above and Beyond, and space opera is outstanding.
 

Aryoche

Explorer
Unfortunately, I'm more of a "dead-tree" type of person. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy PDF's for reference, but I spend too many hours in my professional life (and personal life too!) staring at a monitor, and I guess I prefer actually holding the book in my hands. I did manage to get a copy of the rules in hardcopy a while back, I'm still on the lookout for Helios Rising.

Eclipse Phase is next up on the reading list, as soon as I finish Alpha Omega, which is the running contender for my next Sci-Fi game. It's been a long time since a "monster" book has inspired so many ideas, so it was refreshing to say the least!




Very true, but thankfully there are the pdf's. Dawningstar is hands down the best D20 Future book published. Period. It's mix of hard sci-fi logic in a setting that had elements of Firefly (Serenity), Earth Above and Beyond, and space opera is outstanding.
 

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