Friday, March 16, 2012

Giving Savage Worlds a spin

So last month I wrapped up my one and a half year D&D campaign and was looking for some new worlds to adventure in. I was clamping at the bit to get into Dark Sun and was pretty excited about DMing it. My players ranged from don't-care-let's-play-something, to I'm-not-too-big-into-fantasy. Given that the old campaign was a little dark, the idea of jumping into another bleak setting like Dark Sun was also a minus for some folks. So I had to think of other options.

I floated out an idea of playing the new version of Gamma World, possibly a 30s supernatural game using Savage Worlds, or maybe jump into the new version of Traveller. All were well received but Traveller was at the top of the list. I like the newest version from Mongoose Publishing and the rule system is pretty easy mechanic-wise, but I kept looking over my Savage Worlds books.

Traveller would be an entirely new system for everyone (including myself as a GM). So I'd have to go through the ropes of getting everyone into the mechanics of the game. If we wanted to take a break and jump into another genre, likely they'd have to learn an entirely new system. Gamma World wasn't an issue for them on this point. As we had played it before and everyone knew 4E very well. So while I liked Traveller and was eager to give it a whirl, I didn't want to get my group into a tailored system for just that game. If we wanted to jump into a superhero game, or maybe try out the 30s supernatural campaign for a few games, it would cut into our play time having to get everyone up to speed with different RPG systems.

So I decided to put work into making a Savage World (SW) conversion for Traveller. There are all ready quite a few conversions out there. Not to mention that SW all ready is pretty generic to run just about anything right out of the book. I've also decided to focus on a few key bits within Traveller to work with SW. That way for a good chunk of the game, like spaceship combat, buying and selling goods, etc. I can use the values in Traveller, just quickly port it over to SW.

The biggest hurdle was trying to distill the various skills from Traveller down to a more truncated list for SW. A tad daunting, but something I was able to do. Likely there will be some more changes and not everything fits perfectly. However I think it's good enough and my players will likely not be too irked by some of the skill swapping.

I'm liking this as Savage Worlds is very modular. If we want to take a break from Sci-Fi opera and try something else out, both myself and the players can switch gears pretty easily and not have to worry about learning another completely new RPG system. I think with posts on the blog you can expect a few directed more to Savage Worlds in the future. Yet I'll still be plenty focused on dispensing my opinionated, bloated ego and ideas on D&D topics too.