As I mentioned last week, I want to critically examine five game systems to try to pick the best fit for my upcoming Dark Wars campaign. Over the next five weeks I will be examining, in alphabetical order, 13th Age; Adventurer, Conqueror, King; Cypher; Pathfinder; and Runequest.
Today, however, I wanted to start by establishing my criteria for this series. I have already cut my system choices back, and I am left with systems that I would love to run. Some of these systems I have already run game in Ta’nar with. To me, the Dark Wars will be special. It will be the first game I am able to prepare a system specifically for Ta’nar. In some ways, I consider all the games that have come before as alpha and beta testing of the world and its special features. Before, I have been fleshing out the world, and the flavor, and I paired them up with systems that I could use to get the testing going.
So I want to make sure that when I start the Dark Wars and lock in to that story for the long haul, that I have prepared the story and system for each other. After that I will focus on preparing my players for will come.
I will be viewing the systems through the three different lens, world, mechanics, and finally enjoyment. I need to make sure the world of Ta’nar can be represented within the game system, and that mechanics of the system support the aspects I want to tell the tale of the Dark Wars. Finally, I want to make sure this is a game that I will enjoy playing in for months or even years.
How closely does the system match to the high magic, epic fantasy style found in Ta’nar?
Does the system have established rules for:
Ascending to Godhood
Establishing & Management of Nations
Creation of Races
Creation of Classes
Simple Monster Creation Rules
Fast interesting combat
Have I run this game before?
If, so, did my players enjoy it?
Did I enjoy it?
Is the system one that lends itself to mastery?
The goal with these posts is not to review the game systems in question. (Although I will links to the system reviews I have posted on this blog.) The goal is to view them through the lens of what system will work best for Ta’nar.
I will see you next week for a look at Ta’Nar – 13th Age Edition.
PS: This weekend I will be running games at Starfest in Denver. If you are headed there, come sit in on a Numenera game or a Dragon Kings game run by setting creator Tim Brown.