Monday, August 17, 2015

RPGaDay #17 Favorite Fantasy RPG

“There's something terribly weird about the standard fantasy setting--not least of which the fact the phrase "standard fantasy setting" can be uttered without irony.”
Yahtzee Croshaw

 I think Yahtzee really nails my feelings on fantasy RPGs as a whole. Fantasy, at least as it applies to gaming, is fairly standardized. Elves and orcs and magic swords. And every new take or reinvention of those tropes just feels like more of the same. My favorite fantasy RPGs are the ones that actually do something different, something outside of this box.

Talislanta is one of my wife's favorite games, and definitely worthy of mention. Famously promising "No Elves", the Talislanta setting owes more to Jack Vance than J.R.R. Tolkien. It is exotic, diverse and magical. (Pro tip: Click the link. You can get everything about Talislanta free and legal on that site. It's awesome.)

Exalted is another fun fantasy game that breaks from the classic mold. Inspired by epic fantasy, and illustrated with an exciting anime/manga style, it's a game about human characters granted immense power. As one of the Exalted, your character is imbued with vast power to change the world from Day 1. I've run a few campaigns with this game, but never long enough to really run into the problems with the rules that everyone seems to crow about on the internet.

And of course, Adventures in Oz: Fantasy Roleplaying Beyond the Yellow Brick Road. (If you thought I wasn't going to mention it pretty much every time it's vaguely applicable, you're on the wrong blog). It's a game where a little girl is a totally valid character choice, because it's not about how big your guns are, but how big your heart is.

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