RPG Encyclopedia: English

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13th Age
1st ed by Rob Heinsoo, Jonathan Tweet (2013) Pelgrane Press
A fantasy tabletop role-playing game with a customizable setting, based on a variant of the D20 System from third editionDungeons & Dragons. It mixes in story-oriented mechanics, along with no predefined skills and no assumption of figures or a map for combat. It does include ten levels grouped into three tiers. The setting includes default places, a default bestiary, and 13 default figures of power in the world (known as Icons - such as the Archmage, the Diabolist, and others). However, other details are left open to be filled in as part of character creation.
The 23rd Letter
1st ed by Matt Johnston, John Fleming, Colin Johnston, Eamon Watters, Mark Lamki, Lesley McLarnon (1996) Crucible
A sci-fi conspiracy RPG, set in a world where psychics are real and becoming more and more commonplace. The PC's are psychics or humans caught in the secretive war between government projects and the corporate powers. It uses a simple skill-based system (the "ERIS" system), which includes rules for psychic powers.
3:16 Carnage Amongst The Stars
1st ed by Gregor Hutton (2008) BoxNinja
A science-fiction role-playing game, where the player characters are members of 16th Brigade, 3rd Army, of the Terran Expeditionary Force. They are soldiers fighting alien bugs that are trying to kill every living thing in the Universe to protect the home world.
The 3Fold System
1st ed by Clint Krause (2004) KNRPG Productions
A simple universal RPG system, similar to the Storyteller system from White Wolf.
.45 Adventure: Crimefighting Action in the Pulp Era
1st ed by Richard A. Johnson (2006) Rattrap Productions
A tabletop miniatures game of two-fisted action set during the era of the pulp magazines, with some role-playing aspects. It can be played without a gamemaster, with as few as 3 models per player.
'45 - Psychobilly Retropocalypse
1st ed by James Desborough (2006) Postmortem Studios
A post-apocalyptic sci-fi RPG based on sci-fi B-movies of the 1930's through 1950's. It is set in a tongue-in-cheek alternate future where WWII was fought by atomic bombs on all sides, creating an America that is largely a radioactive wasteland populated by mutant greasers, beautiful dames, giant ants, and the like. It uses a simple dice pool system called "Xpress engine". Resolution is by rolling a number of d6s equal to attribute, with a target number based on comparing skill level to a universal chart. Character creation includes ten Attributes in pairs ranging from 1-5, along with skills and a simple system of merits and flaws.
7th Sea
1st ed by John Wick, Jennifer Wick (1999) Alderac Entertainment Group
A swashbuckling RPG set on an alternate world ("Theah") very similar to 17th century Earth with the addition of magic and various name changes. There are parallels to most of the major European countries ("Castillian" for Spainiards, etc.) but there is no New World. The system is a dice pool system: roll dice equal to attribute + skill, keeping a number of dice equal to attribute. There are also bonus dice of a different color.
9th Generation
1st ed by Jeff Siadek (1986) Jeff Siadek Enterprises
A tongue-in-cheek post-apocalyptic RPG, published in 3 books including an introductory scenario and a GM screen. Supplements include three extra scenarios, and a rules expansion packet that allows conversion of the plots into fantasy, western, or futuristic settings.
Abbeta: Fantasy Role-Playing Rules for the Twinflare Solar System
1st ed by Martin Hackett, Peter Bennett (1984) self-published
A scifi RPG set in a fantastical version of the solar system. It uses a percentile skill-based system, with attributes POW, FIT, AGI, LUCK and LEARN.
Abeo
1st ed by Jennifer Reynolds , Chuck Lauer (2005) Insomnium Games
A modern horror RPG, set in the modern world where nightmares and horrific fairy tale creatures can recruit or hunt humans. It uses a simple skill-based system where action resolution uses attribute + skill + a die roll versus difficulty, with the die type varying. It includes a sanity system tied into the magic system (feats called Pathos). A character has four Passion scores: Anguish, Dread, Fury, and Yearning. The higher the total of the scores (called Intensity), the more impressive feats of magic the character can do.
Aberrant
1st ed by Justin R. Achilli, Andrew Bates, et al. (1999) White Wolf
The sci-fi superhero RPG (a "prequel" to Trinity) set in an alternate history's 2008 (unrelated to the "World of Darkness"). An accident in 1998 flooded the world with strange radiation that created superpowered "novas". It uses a variant of the "Storyteller" system, introducing "mega-attributes" -- where rather than having strength higher than 5, you might have strength of 3 and also "mega-strength" of 1. Mega-attributes add mega-dice to your dice pool, which are rolled as normal but yield 2 successes if over the target number (or 3 if a ten is rolled).
Ablaneda
1st ed by Jose Carlos Dominguez (2014) Otherselves
A Spanish-language medieval fantasy game, based on geography and legends of the northern Iberian Peninsula. The setting is an isolated country called Ablaneda, where humans struggle against giant snakes, elves, demons, and more. The country has two primary cities, the capital Castro de la Reina, and the commercial center Yerbosera. It uses variant of a simple dice pool system called the xd6 system. Each character is defined by four or five freeform phrases, that are assigned a number of d6. Resolution is by rolling dice equal to the trait, where every 5 or 6 is a success.
Abney Park's Airship Pirates RPG
1st ed by Peter Cakebread, Ken Walton (2011) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited
A post-apocalyptic steampunk roleplaying game, based on the songs of band Abney Park. It is set in a Victorian-style future in the year 2150, after a world-wide apocalypse in 1906 caused by time travel. The world is dominated by a totalitarian government using clockwork police, armored railroads, and airships. The default area is North America, currently a wasteland with scattered nomads. The player operate a steam-powered airships out of sky-cities such as Isla Aether and High Tortuga, who furthermore have acquired a time travel device. It uses a variant of the Fuzion system. Character creation is limited point-based after picking a background: Neobedouin, Neovictorian, or Skyfolk. Lower classes are given more attribute points to balance their lack of money and influence.
Abyss
1st ed by Marco Pecota, Wes Johnson (1997) Global Games
An RPG set in the Hell of Dante's "Inferno", a spin-off of the miniatures game Inferno: Battles of the Abyss. Players roleplay demons, which begin as lowly sergeant class and ultimately work for the Archfiends. It uses a dice pool system, rolling (skill minus difficulty) d6's where any "6" indicates success. It has an action-point based combat system. Character creation is point-bought with templates.
A.C.E. Agents
1st ed by Steve Savage, L. Lee Cerny, Walter H. Mytczynskyj (1992) Stellar Games
A humorous espionage RPG, in which an UNCLE-like espionage organisation has to fund itself by selling the rights to films, toys and comics describing its agents' exploits.
Aces & Eights
1st ed by Jolly Blackburn, Brian Jelke, Steve Johansson, David Kenzer, Jennifer Kenzer, Mark Plemmons (2007) Kenzer & Company
A Wild West RPG using an original system, set in an alternate history of the American West. Combat uses a "shot clock" with a transparent cover and a silhouette of the target, with location determined by a 1d20 roll with modifiers and a card draw. The system also includes roll-over percentile skill tests, where skills start at 100 and go down to 5 for mastery.
Acquitane
1st ed by Carl Smith (1980) Adversary Games
A fantasy-genre RPG, originally published as a setting for D&D. The game apparently came in several books: "Acquitane", "Red Book of Nal", and "Sword and Shield".
Action! System Core Rules
1st ed by Mark Arsenault, Patrick Sweeney, Ross Winn (2002) Gold Rush Games
A universal RPG system, related to the earlier Fuzion system. Action resolution is attribute + skill + 3d6 vs difficulty. Character creation is limited point-based, with a pool of attribute points and a pool of character points (used for advantages, disadvantages, and skills).
Action Castle!
1st ed by Jared A. Sorensen (2009) Memento Mori Theatricks
A humorous mini-RPG intended to emulate old computer text adventure games such as the Zork series - part of a series called Parsely Games. The GM takes the role of the computer, responding to player requests such as "Look key" with computer-like responses.
Active Exploits Diceless RPG
Special Edition ed by Brett M. Bernstein (2002) Deep7
A universal diceless system. The basic diceless rules are published free, but the special edition is available 5.5x8.5 printed format with additional rules and notes. Action resolution is based on spending Luck, Discipline, and Revelation points. Skills lower difficulty, while attributes add to the total. Character creation is limited point-based. There are four free setting books, 20-30 pages each: a modern-day monster-hunter setting ("The Shaded Veil"), a dystopian sci-fi setting ("Overworld"), a modern conspiracy/horror setting ("Harlequinade"), and a medieval Europe setting ("The Kingdom of Norweign"). In addition, there are three commercial settings: HeartQuest, CORPS, and Dreamwalker.
Advanced Dungeons and Dragons
1st ed by Gary Gygax (1978) TSR
2nd ed by David Cook (1989)
The advanced version of the original fantasy role-playing game, Dungeons & Dragons. This is the dominant RPG on the market and has hundreds of supplements and adventures. It uses a class-based system with minimal skills, most resolution being by case- or class-specific rules. Character creation is random-roll, with level-based advancement. A 3rd edition reverted to the title of just Dungeons & Dragons, although it is not part of the separate D&D line.
Advanced Phantasm Adventures
1st ed by Troy Christensen (1992) TC International
A medieval fantasy RPG.
Adventure!
1st ed by Tori Bergquist (1985) self-published
A universal RPG system, using mechanics similar to Chaosium's Basic Roleplaying: attributes in the 2-20 range with percentile based skills. A short vehicle design and combat system was included (by Russ Heller). It includes basic stats on vehicles, weapons of old and new, and a short spell and psionic system. The rulebook is 48 pages with a plain tan cover, no cover art, and fannish interior art. It has a print run of 400 copies.
Adventure!
1st ed by Andrew Bates, Bruce Baugh (2001) White Wolf
This is a pulp-genre RPG set in an alternate version of the roaring 20's. This is the third in the trilogy of games including Trinity and Aberrant. This forms a prequel to the other two, showing the roots of the Aeon Society which in the future will change the world. It uses roughly the same variant of the "Storyteller" system as the others in the trilogy. It includes "Dramatic Editing" rules to represent the psychic luck of the PC's, which allows the player to change storyline continuity for a cost in inspiration points.
Adventure Maximum
1st ed by Dennis McDonald (1992) WorldMaster Designs
2nd ed (1996)
A self-published universal RPG system. Reviewed in Shadis magazine #10 (mini-review) and #15.
Adventure Maximus
1st ed by Francis Hogan (2014) Eden Studios
A fantasy RPG with a card-based system designed for children ages 8 and up. Character creation is handled by putting down a race card, a class card, and an action card. Resolution uses custom six-sided dice, where each die has three blank sides, one side show one sword, one side showing two swords, and one side showing the Maximus symbol. Cards can also be used in adventure creation, with a formatted sheet that starts the adventure by putting in a Map card, a Treasure card, and a Creature card on the bottom row.
Adventure Quest: Jaern
1st ed by Robert Blake, Daniel Lawrence (1991) Lafayette Simulations
A universal RPG system, including a fantasy setting with sci-fi elements ("Jaern"). Jaern is an ocean planet that was shot out of its orbit and eons later (its inhabitants protected by psi shield and cryogenics) smashed through another planet ("Torandor") to take its place in that system.
Adventurer Conqueror King System
1st ed by Alexander Macris, Tavis Allison, Greg Tito (2012) Autarch LLC
A variant of D&D that draws from the Basic Set version - including combined race and class and strict 3d6 attribute rolls. Attacks, saves, and proficiencies are all recorded as the target number on 1d20, like "14+" (called "throws"). Resolution is by rolling 1d20 + modifiers compared to the throw number. Advancement is level-based, but also divides into three categories (adventurer, conqueror, and king) where the characters progress into developing followers and territory.
The Adventurer's Handbook
1st ed by Bob Albrecht, Greg Stafford (1984) Reston Publishing Company Inc.
A small-press fantasy-genre RPG intended as an introduction to role-playing for beginning players. The cover shows a row of young players with their fantasy selves floating above them -- with similar features but medieval wardrobe. The system is a variant of Chaosium's Basic Roleplaying. It is an intentionally generic system with a pedantic approach, which includes in the end a list of other RPGs and RPG companies of the time, along with brief reviews of nine "major" ones.
Adventures in Delving
1st ed by Vincent Diakuw (2004) Thousandpress
An electronically-published fantasy RPG of the pulp swords and sorcery genre. It uses a simple step-die system with an emphasis on description. Character creation includes selecting step dice (d4 to d12) for attributes (Courageous, Wise, Mysterious, Solitary, and Charming) as well as a stereotype (such as "Barbarian Warrior", "Dashing Rogue", or "Arcane Student") which adds or subtracts a Fit Die to the total when the stereotype applies to the action.
Adventures in Fantasy
1st ed by Dave Arneson, Richard Snider (1979) Excalibur Games Inc.
2nd ed (1979) Adventure Games Incorporated
A medieval fantasy RPG. The system is class-based: warrior or magic-user. Social standing has a heavy influence on character creation. The first edition is 163 pages and included three books: Book of Adventure, Book of Faery and Magic, and Book of Creatures and Treasure, along with charts and dice.
Adventures in Oz
1st ed by F. Douglas Wall (2010) F. Douglas Wall Publishing
A fantasy RPG set in the world of L. Frank Baum's Oz books, designed for young players. It uses a simple system with seven traits: Athletics, Awareness, Brains, Presence, Sneaking, and Wits. Basic resolution is by rolling two six-sided dice against a trait, with success if either is less than or equal to the trait. There is a combat system, but no death in keeping with the background. It also includes a simple magic system. Character creation is by picking a template - such as Crafted Person (like the Scarecrow) or Animal (like Toto or the Cowardly Lion). This is followed by buying extra points, a friends list, and Oz points. Oz points are gained in play by making friends, and spent to get a bonus to a roll or receive help from friends.
Adventures in Science
1st ed by Vincent Diakuw (2004) Thousandpress
An electronically-published pulp action RPG. It uses a simple step-die system with an emphasis on description. Character creation includes selecting step dice (d4 to d12) for attributes as well as a stereotype, which adds or subtracts a Fit Die to the total when the stereotype applies to the action.
The Adventures of Indiana Jones
1st ed by David "Zeb" Cook (1984) TSR
A pulp-action RPG in the world of the "Indiana Jones" movies. The 64-page rulebook concentrated on playing actual characters from the movies. The boxed set included paper miniatures.
The Adventures of Luther Arkwright
1st ed by James Brunton (1991) 23rd Parallel Games
A UK alternate-timeline RPG based on the miniseries of comics by Bryan Talbot. The titular hero is a man with the unique ability to jump between parallel universes. He is recruited by a telepath named Rose Wylde to become an agent of the parallel known as "zero-zero" - whose stable position in the multiverse has allowed the development of world peace. They fight an organization called the Disruptors who are trying to destabilize the multiverse. The system is a percentile skill-based system similar to Chaosium's Basic Roleplaying. Resolution uses a universal table that converts skill, difficulty and a percentile roll into level of success from best (A) to least (E). Character creation is random-roll, with different rolls for the percentile stats. Strength is 4D10+20; Endurance is 4D10+30; Willpower is 6D10+10; PSI-rating is a straight D100 roll; etc. The player adds Intellect + Willpower + (age multiplied by ten) to get the number of points to spend on skills. Some skills have a default, and some get a First Point bonus (a bonus only if at least 1 point is spent on them). Character generation includes the option for the GM to designate one player character with a PSI ability, and for one player character to have a Warrior Option that significantly boosts points.
Aegis
1st ed by Alberto Tronchi (2011) Alephtar Games
A science fantasy RPG inspired by Japanese console RPGs. The player characters are agents of an elite corp in charge of exploring the ruins of a lost civilization - armed with energy guns, katanas, spells, and ancient artifacts.
Æternal Legends
1st ed by Stewart Wilson (2007) Mob United Media
A modern magic RPG, set in a modern world with a Pocket Kingdom where elves, dwarves, gnomes rub shoulders with witches and alchemists right under the noses of a mundane population. One in twenty people is Aware of magic, and a few are Legends who fight evil. It uses an original system, the "Ready 2 Run" system. This is a dice pool system with broad traits ("Aptitudes") like Soldier or Scientist. You roll a number of d6s equal to Attribute + Aptitude, and every 1 or 2 is a success.
Aftermath
1st ed by Bob Charrette, Paul Hume (1981) FGU
A generic post-nuclear-apocalypse RPG, supporting various sub-genres (mutants, survivalist, etc.). The system is a complex skill-based, where action is resolved by rolling a d20 under (skill/5) or (attribute/2). Character creation uses limited point allocation, with some random rolls. Notably, besides standard attributes it has "aptitudes" in skill categories: charismatic, combative, communicative, esthetic, mechanical, natural, and scientific. Combat is quite complex, with a two-page flowchart explaining the combat sequence(!!). It uses basic to-hit, hit-location, and damage rolls with armor subtracted -- but with many special-case criticals.
After The Bomb RPG
1st ed by Eric Wujcik (2001) Palladium Books
A post-apocalyptic RPG where anthropomorphic mutated animals rule the world. This was formerly a supplement line for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles RPG, but has been released as a standalone RPG. It uses a variant of the Palladium System, with limited point-bought character creation (via "bio-energy").
Afterwars: Roleplaying in Post WWIII America
1st ed by Timothy J. McFadden (1991) Stellar Games
A post-apocalyptic RPG, set in the U.S. 6 months after a large nuclear, biological, conventional war with the Soviets. The Russians manage to invade the U.S., with attendant resistance. One unique feature is that "U-joints" occurred where nuclear blasts met close together: creating gatewas to other dimensions. It uses the system from Expendables by L. Lee Cerny and Walter H. Mytczenskyj. Character classes are Mainstream, Military, and Fringe. Reviewed in White Wolf #33.
Against the Darkness: A Roleplaying Game of Vatican Horror and Conspiracy
1st ed by Christopher A. Field, Daniel M. Brakhage, Vicki Potter (2006) Tabletop Adventures, LLC
A modern horror game where the PCs are an elite group of priests and other personnel fighting demons, ghosts, and vampires. Character types include Modern Templars, Treasure Seekers, Dispassionate Experts, Sacred Hunters, Blessed Non-believers or others. Resolution is by attribute rating + skill or miracle rating + resolution die vs. target number. There are four attributes -- Corpus, Spiritus, Mentus, Fidelis -- each rated from 1 to 7 as well as having a designated resolution die: d4, d6, or d8. There are 12 skills and 19 miracles, each with a base attribute.
Agent S.E.V.E.N.
1st ed by Todd Downing (1999) Deep7
A very simple espionage mini-RPG published in electronic PDF format. It uses a version of the "1PG" system, which (as its name implies) fits on a single page. Resolution is rolling 1d6 and getting under attribute or skill, where 1 is always success and 6 is always failure.
Agent X
1st ed by Rob Stone, Sean Tisdale, Annette Tisdale (1999) Mind Interactive
A table-top and live-action espionage RPG. The PC's are FBI, CIA, and NSA agents. The system uses a custom deck of cards. Action resolution uses skill level minus difficulty to find the number of cards to draw from the deck. Success is determined by the number of success cards. Character creation is by picking an agency template and adding point-bought skills. The rules include essays on spy slang and surveillance.
Age of Chivalry
1st ed by Marshall Rose (1978) Avant-Garde Simulations Perspectives
A medievel knights RPG, concentrating on a unique system for combat, with a bare bones campaign system included. The combat system involves cross referencing tables to determine the modifiers to attacks based upon what combination of attack and defense each combatant chooses. It also has a jousting system simular to one in Chivalry and Sorcery.
Age of Empire
1st ed by Gareth-Michael Skarka (1996) Epitaph Studios
A fantasy RPG set in Victorian Europe with the addition of wizards, mad scientists, and monsters (including demons, dragons, elementals, lycanthropes, and even Martians). It uses a fairly simple system with 3 attributes (Mind, Body, and Spirit), attribute specialties, and various skills. Action resolution is by rolling a number of d6's equal to attribute + skill, compared against a number of dice rolled by the GM for difficulty. This has large variation, which is intentional for a cinematic genre.
Age of Heroes - Adventure in High Fantasy
1st ed by Brian Gleichman (2012) self-published
A detailed fantasy-genre system, using a percentile system. Character creation is class-based with random-roll attributes and additional point-bought traits. Players roll 1d100 on a table for each of ten attributes, generating a score from 2 to 12 for each. The game is self-published via Lulu.com.
The Age of Phaedrus
1st ed by Sean Bindel, Brian Fitzpatrick (1997) Moebius Adventures
A traditional fantasy RPG (with elves, dwarves, monsters, and dungeons). It uses a mix of random-roll and allocated character creation, and a pure skill-based system.
Age of Ruin
1st ed by Clay Gibbons (1990) Cutting Edge Games
A post-apocalyptic RPG, set around 80 years after the a third world war caused by lack of natural resources. The dominant weapon was called the Red Death, a plague which killed by mutating the DNA of the infected. If you survived, your children were mutants. It uses a simple percentile attribute and skill-based system. Includes a fast-playing vehicle combat system, and an introductory mini- campaign/adventure. Reviewed in White Wolf #22.
Agon
1st ed by John Harper (2006) one.seven design
A competitive RPG set in a fantastic version of ancient Greece, similar to the settings of the Iliad and the Odyssey. It uses a combat system where the player holds dice in their right hand to represent attacks, and in their left hand to represent defenses.
A.I.
1st ed (1993) Digest Group Publications
A science fantasy RPG -- never actually published. It was announced in 1993 as the next project for DGP. The game was set in a decayed future where Earth has been radically changed by nanotechnology, machine intelligence, and genetic engineering (attempting science as magic). The characters would be explorers working for intelligent starships that have returned home to find it inexplicably changed.
Albedo
1st ed by Paul Kidd, Steve Gallacci (1988) Thoughts and Images (a subsidiary of TAGG)
2nd ed (1993) Chessex
Platinum Catalyst ed (2004) Sanguine Productions
A sci-fi RPG based on the comic book series "Albedo, Anthropomorphics" by Steve Gallacci. It is a hard-science starfaring setting, with the twist that the characters are anthropomorphic animals (from 1 of 163 species).
Albion: Celtesque fantasy roleplaying after the Shrug
1st ed by Tim Gray (2002) Silver Branch Games
A post-apocalyptic fantasy RPG set in Britain after a rapid climate change (known as The Shrug), social upheaval, and the return of magic to the world. Various factions have arisen with conflicting beliefs in magic and technology. In Britain the Order of Druids was rebuilt, and spirits from the Otherworlds of Annwn and Abred have returned. It uses a dice-pool system (the LODE system), with action resolution based on rolling a number of d6's based on skill + modifiers, where any result of 4-6 indicates a success. Character creation is limited-point based (spending points on Attributes, Skills, and Advantages) plus a selection of template.
Aletheia
1st ed by Lee Foster, Monica Valentinelli, Werner Hager (2007) Abstract Nova Entertainment
A modern-day occult RPG, where the player characters are members of the Seven Dogs Society, a detailed organization that investigates paranormal occurrences throughout the world with the belief that a single truth underlies everything. It uses a simple dice pools system where you gain automatic successes equal to your level in a relevant occupation or extracurricular skill, then roll d6s equal to your relevant attribute where every 5 or 6 is an additional victory. A will point may be spent to roll an additional 1d6. Character creation is limited point-buy, with attribute points for the four attributes (fitness, awareness, personality and reason -- rated 1 to 5); occupation points for skills; and supplemental points that can be used to buy powers as well as to buy increased attributes, addition descriptors, occupations and extracurricular skills. The nine powers are presque vu (intuition), deja visite (orientation), remote viewing, X-ray vision, postcognition, precognition, ghosting (insubstantiality), teleportation, and time travel.
Alice - Single Die Roleplaying System
1st ed by M. Redwood, D. Freegard, V. Piper, P. Scott, D. Barton (2003) Alice RPS
A complete RPG, focused on modern-day settings but designed for use in most genres with a little more work. It uses a simple skill-based system, rolling under Core Skill + Aptitude + Focus + modifiers on 1d20. Character creation is open point-based, allowing spending on the 16 different broad Core Skills (such as Athletics), the Aptitudes (narrower skills such as Throw, Melee, Unarmed, and Acrobatics), and Focuses (specializations).
Aliens
1st ed by Barry Nakazano, David McKenzie (1990) Leading Edge
A sci-fi action RPG based on the movie "Aliens". It uses an simplified version of the combat rules in Phoenix Command, although it is still quite complex.
Alien Summit
1st ed by Annie Rush (2004) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A sci-fi mini-RPG about negotiation between four alien races using Earth as neutral territory. It is partly live-action format, as the PCs are aliens in human guise similar to the players who are sitting around a room and discussing problems. Character creation is based on random draw of six playing cards: one determines race, while five others define personality Quirks. Players can trade cards back to the dealer to add some control. The core rules include descriptions of the four races mainly in terms of personalities and beliefs. Action is primarily discussion between the players. The rules include special powers and limited combat rules, all of which are diceless, spending certain tokens for effects.
All-Adventure Action Roleplay Game!
1st ed by Gareth Jones (unknown, pre-1991) Taupe Games
A small-press universal RPG (AAARG!) with an emphasis on pulp or swashbuckling cinematic action. The rulebook is 54 pages (A4 size) staple-bound, and includes a general bestiary, NPC archetypes, campaign ideas, and a simple weapons chart. Action resolution is a d20 roll modified by skill, attributes, etc. Character creation is cooperative rather than point-based or rolled -- the player and GM simply assign stats based on the role. It has 8 attributes (Brain, Muscle, Heart, Soul, Legs, Hands, Senses, and Mouth) rated 1-10, along with Skills, Passions, Hobbies, and Interests.
All Flesh Must Be Eaten
1st ed by Albert Bruno III, C.J. Carella, Richard Oaken, M. Alexander Jurkat, George Vasilakos (1999) Eden Studios
A zombie-horror RPG, covering a variety of possible campaign settings. There are notes on creating different types of zombies. The core book presents eleven separate campaign concepts, each with distinct zombie stats, background info and adventure seeds. These range from modern-day Romero-inspired reanimation to alien invasion, WWII, medieval times, post-apocalyptic zombies, and a Biblical apocalypse. It uses the skill-based "Unisystem" from Witchcraft, with open point-based character creation and resolution by stat+d10 vs difficulty. There are three basic character types: normal civilians, survival specialists, and the "inspired" who have magic-like abilities.
All-for-one Régime Diabolique
1st ed by Paul Wade-Williams (2010) Triple Ace Games
A swashbuckling/horror RPG set in France of 1636, the time of The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers, with the addition of horror elements including black magicians, secret societies, and demons. The player characters are King's musketeers, fighting the corrupt nobility and their diabolic creations, agents of Cardinal Richelieu, and other enemies of the throne. It uses a variant of the "Ubiquity system" also used by Hollow Earth Expedition.
All Star Wrestling
1st ed by Paul Schulze (1991) Afterthought Images
A professional wrestling RPG.
Alma Mater
1st ed by Steve Davis, Andrew Warden (1982) Oracle Games
A grossly humorous RPG about high-school students of anarchic bent at a generic high-school setting, "Central High". The cover by Erol Otus shows juvenile delinquents gathered at the front door of their high school, with drug-dealing and fornication in evidence. The inside cover is a map of Central High School. The system is skill-based. Character creation is class-based with random-roll attributes. You roll 7d10 and assign one die to each of seven attributes: Strength, Coordination, Appearance, Intelligence, Learning Drive, Courage, Willpower, and Constitution. You pick one of seven classes: Average Kid, Brain, Cheerleader, Criminal, Jock, Tough, and Loser. You then generate your social level based upon your class and a d10 roll, which in turn generates your starting money and allowance. Your age (from 13 to 17) and birthday are then generated. You get attribute increases when you turn 16, 17 and 18. You then randomly generate problems, ranging from "Moderate Acne" to phobias and so forth, with increased problems for lower Appearance. You have initial skills based on class, including high-school specific skills such as Cheating, Drinking, Studying, and Crudeness. The core book includes rules for activities ranging from drug use, animal reactions, and dealing with the contents of the chem lab to pregnancy. Players score points for Social Success (for dating, partying, etc.), Academic Success (for grades), and General Success (including miscellaneous such as successful crimes for the Criminal and Tough classes). The game includes an explicit victory condition that whoever has the most Success Points after four years of game time wins the campaign.
Alpha Omega
1st ed by David Carter, Earl Fischl (2008) Mind Storm Labs
A post-apocalyptic science fantasy game, set on Earth in the year 2280, after a series of natural disasters as well as biological and nuclear war have laid waste to the planet. Magic has been rediscovered, monsters roam the wastelands, and two alien races (Nephilim and Grigori) resembling angels and demons are beginning a perennial war. It uses an original system, that involves rolling six dice of types determined by attribute rank. For example, an attribute of 18 has a pool of 3d6 + 3d4. Resolution is by adding the total from the dice pool and skill rank, compared to difficulty level. Each combat turn is divided into six phases, and the six dice from the pool must be split among the phases a character is allowed to act in. Character creation is open point-based, spending 500 points on attributes, skills, advantages, and disadvantages over a base species template.
Alternity
1st ed by Bill Slavicsek, Richard Baker (1998) TSR
A generic science-fiction RPG. It uses a skill-based system with restrictive professions (similar to Rolemaster). Character creation is by limited point-buying, with 5 classes. The resolution is standard roll d20 under attribute+skill, with a twist. Rather than fixed modifiers, the roll is modified by a second step-die which varies (i.e. -d4, +d4, +d6, +d8, etc.). Experience is divided into levels, but experience can be divided freely among skills. It also covers aliens (5 types), starships, psionics, mutations, and equipment to varying degrees.
Settings include "Star*Drive"; "Dark*Matter" (conspiracy); and "Gamma World" (based on the earlier game).
Altus Adventum
1st ed by Roderic Waibel (2004) Sacrosanct Games Ent.
An electronically-published "retro-style" fantasy RPG set on an original fantasy world -- the continent Algerian on the planet of Azorath, inhabited by humans, elves, dwarves, and gnomes. It uses the "InertiaX System" which emphasizes flexibility and speed of resolution for combat. Action resolution is a stepped dice pool (1d4, 2d4, and on up to 4d20, 5d20). Wounds are scaled in four steps. The full combat system includes a speed point systems as well as maneuvers such as charging, power attacks, critical hits, encumbrance, poison and disease, and fatigue. It includes a magic system with four types (Rune, Totem, Channeling, and Mental). Character creation involves percentile attributes and percentile non-combat skills, as well as selecting an optional guild occupation including warrior, knight, wizard, paladin, rogue, assassin, and druid. The core rules also includes over 100 monsters.
Amazing Engine
1st ed by David "Zeb" Cook, Karen S. Boomgarden, Michele Carter (1993) TSR
A minimalist generic system from TSR. It uses a simple percentile system where the players generate a "core concept" with 4 attributes (Physique/ Intellect/ Spirit/ Influence), which is fleshed out when it was adapted to a given setting. Two sub-attributes are then specified for each attribute, and skills are bought. Actions are resolved by rolling percentile dice under skill. Degree of success is shown by the "ones" digit of the roll: the lower, the better.
The 19-page system was included with many universebooks, including: "For Faerie Queen and Country" (Victorian Earth + faerie), "Bughunters", "The Galactos Barrier" (Space Opera), "Kromosome" (cyberpunk + genetics), "Magitech", "The Once and Future King" (Arthurian science fantasy), "Tabloid!" (Earth where tabloids are true), and "Metamorphosis Alpha to Omega" (a remake of the classic game: science fantasy on a generation starship).
Amber Diceless Role-playing
1st ed by Eric Wujcik (1991) Phage Press
A diceless RPG based on the novels by Roger Zelazny. The system makes action resolution entirely within GM discretion, with various guidelines given. Character creation is via a point system with a unique auction where players compete with each other to have the highest of each of the 4 attributes. Detailed writeups are given for many characters from the series.
Ancient Odysseys: Treasure Awaits!
1st ed by Brett Bernstein (2010) Precis Intermedia Games
A simple medieval fantasy game with a skill based system, intended as a quick introductory game that players can start playing within ten minutes, that focuses on dungeon crawling. Player characters are one of four races (human, elf, dwarf, or hobling) - and one of three vocations (rogue, warrior, or wizard). There are three attributes (Fitness, Awareness, and Reasoning) and about 15 skills. Resolution is by rolling 1d6 and adding attribute and skill versus a difficulty number. It comes in a boxed set with three booklets.
Angel
1st ed by C.J. Carella (2003) Eden Studios
A modern-day monster-fighting RPG based on the U.S. television series, the spin-off from Buffy the Vampire Slayer set in modern-day Los Angeles. It uses a variant of the "Cinematic Unisystem" which was originally designed for the closely related Buffy the Vampire Slayer RPG. The Angel rules add more detail on various demons as player characters, as well as detailed rules for organizations, and some varied options in ads/disads and combat maneuvers to fit the series.
Anima: Beyond Fantasy RPG
1st Spanish ed by Carlos B. García Aparicio (2005) Edge Entertainment
1st English ed (2008) Fantasy Flight Games
2nd Spanish ed (2010) Edge Entertainment
A fantasy genre RPG influenced by Japanese anime themes. It uses an involved system similar to the Rolemaster mechanics. Characters creation uses races, classes and levels. Attributes are random-roll, while other options are limited point-bought. Resolution uses 1d100 + skill vs difficulty, though there are also attribute checks done as rolling 1d10 under attribute.
Annalise: Stories of pain, hunger and redemption
1st ed by Nathan Paoletta (2008) Hamsterprophet Productions
A GMless storytelling game about vampires - where the player characters human characters who are to be the victims, hunters and tools of the Vampire. Each player takes turn being "Active Player," "Scene Guide" and "Audience". It has a system including tokens and dice, where die rolls are used for Achievements and Consequences. Character creation is by defining a Vulnerability and a Secret.
Apocalypse Prevention, Inc.
1st ed by Eloy Lasanta (2008) Third Eye Games
A modern-day horror RPG, set in a world where demons from various dimensions secretly live among us. The player characters are agents of an organization (Apocalypse Prevention, Inc.) that monitors them and arrests those that break the law. Agents include various other races as well as human: Burners, Changelings, Lochs (fish people), Spectrals, Taylari (vampires), and Wolf People. The game uses its own system, the Dynamic Gaming System (DGS). The core mechanic is 1d20 + Attribute + Skill vs. a Target Number of 10, 20, 30, or 40. Character creation is by picking race as well as passion (which provide experience bonuses), limited point-buy of attributes and skills, along with bonus points usable for Gifts, and possibly more from taking Drawbacks. The rules include a magic system divided into 18 Paths (types) and 3 Circles (power levels). Each spell has a mana cost, where mana points come from converting a character's Stamina.
Apocalypse World
1st ed by D. Vincent Baker (2010) Lumpley Games
A post-apocalyptic RPG, set about 50 years after an devastating apocalypse though no one really knows what happened or why. The world is a lawless place ruled by gangs well supplied with guns, ammunition, and gasoline. There is also a psychic maelstrom that either came from or caused the apocalypse. Character creation is by choosing and customizing one of 11 playbooks: Angel, Battlebabe, Brainer, Chopper, Driver, Gunlugger, Hardholder, Hocus, Operator, Savvyhead, or Skinner. Resolution is by rolling 2d6 + attribute, where 7-9 is a limited success and 10+ is a full success. Each playbook has a number of customized moves, including combat and non-combat options.
Apocrypha
1st ed by Barbara J. Webb, Heather Watson (2000) Frontiers Design
A fantasy RPG set on an original world. Choosing from the 11 original races and 11 religions determines the styles of magic and the advancement of technology to which a PC has easy access. The races range from pure energy beings to humanoid saurians. The system is 3d6-based and focuses on detailed character creation but simplicity in play.
Apokryph: le dernier Cantique
1st ed by Sofiène Boumaza (2003) Scriptorium
A French-language modern day occult horror RPG, set in the Vatican. The PCs are generally members of the Vatican, from five key orders: Augustine, Dominican, Franciscan, Jesuit, and Carmelite. They are facing a possible end of the world coming, and various conspiracies and cults are working towards that -- both within the church and outside it. It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation is limited point-buy attributes and skills, with the chosen order giving advantages and obligations to the character, as well as a privileged attribute. There are 53 points to split among nine attributes rated 1 to 10 (Intelligence, Will, Education, Force, Memory, Charisma, Dexterity, Constitution and Perception). Then there are 450 points to distribute among the percentile skills. There are also three gauges: Mystique (perception of the world), Faith, and Vitality. The core rulebook includes background on the Vatican, opponents, and an introductory adventure ("The Conscience of Saint Pierre").
The Archaereon Game System
Mage ed by Wilf K. Backhaus (1980) Archaereon Games Ltd.
Warrior ed by Wilf K. Backhaus, Jan Vrapcenak, Richard Fietz (1981)
A medieval fantasy RPG based on feudal Europe -- growing out of a Chivalry & Sorcery) campaign in the world of "Arden". It was published as a magic system with mage character creation, and a combat system with warrior creation.
Archangels: In the Beginning
1st ed by Evangelos Hugo Paliatseas (2004) Plot Device
A freeform Live Action Role Playing (LARP) event game using a token system, set at the dawn of time. The players portray sixteen parts of the mind of God -- Gabriel, Michael, Uriel, Samael, Azrael, and more. Described as a mix of "divine power, infinite possibility, and boundless ego".
Archetype
1st ed by James Terbrack (2010) self-published
A fantasy rpg using a system based on the Tarot deck in place of dice. It is set in a dark fantasy world where humanity is making its last stand against monsters. The player characters are working for a group called Archetype that infuses humans with traits from monsters. Character creation includes numeric attributes along with associated Key Words. For example, Physical could have key words Condition, Grace, and Strength. Skills list these Key words. If you have the skill's Key Word in your attribute then your skill is aided by your attribute. Resolution works by making a number of draws from the tarot deck equal to your skill (aided or not), where each card over the difficulty (1-14) is a success. Major arcana cards are used in the magic system.
Arduin Adventure
1st ed by David A. Hargrave (1981) Grimoire Games
2nd ed (1981) Dragon Tree Press
The Compleat Arduin ed by David A. Hargrave, Mark Schynert (1992) Grimoire Games
A medieval fantasy RPG based on The Arduin Grimoire (Vols I, II, and III), which is a supplement for D&D and an outgrowth of Hargrave's long-running campaign. The system is essentially a variant of D&D with redefined races, classes, and other rules. Mages cast memorized spells, while priests have a ritual system. The revised version ("The Compleat Arduin") includes 20 distinct races, new rules, comprehensive equipment lists.
Argyle & Crew - Adventure in the Land of Skcos
1st ed by Benjamin Gerber (2011) Troll in the Corner
A collaborative storytelling adventure for both kids and adults. Players take a sock and craft it to built their character. There is a GM ("Guide") who then takes them through simple quests, such as searching for a specific item throughout the home, where each clue leads to the next until someone accomplishes the requirements. The basic rules are guidelines like improv, such as "There is only yes" or the optional "Yes, but..." method. There are also advanced rules more like traditional RPGs, with numbered stats and d6 rolls for resolution.
Aria: Canticle of the Monomyth
1st ed by Christian S. Moore, Owen M. Seyler (1994) Last Unicorn
A generic system published in three books ("Canticle", "Worlds", "Role-playing"), emphasizing GM or cooperating world design. The character creation is a somewhat complex point system. Action resolution is simple in principle (d10+modifiers vs difficulty), but with a host of modifiers.
Armageddon: The End Times
1st ed by C. J. Carella (1997) Myrmidon
2nd ed (1999) Eden Studios
A near-future horror RPG where the world is at war with the hi-tech Church of Revelations, which worships an alien entity so horrific that Heaven, Hell, and even old pagan gods have openly joined in the battle against it. It uses the "Unisystem" from Witchcraft, which is a simple skill based system: skill+attribute+1d10 vs difficulty. The editing and layout have some problems, however (1st edition).
Armageddon 2089 Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Ian Sturrock (2003) Mongoose Publishing
A near-future sci-fi RPG concentrating on mek-based warfare and the mercenary/corporate companies who use them. It is set in a future where, in 2089, the world faces a devastating war between the United States of America and the European Federation. The PCs are mercernaries who own "WarMeks" -- human-shaped combat robots. This uses a variant of of the D20 System from third edition Dungeons & Dragons, with many additions for futuristic Mek combat. The rules include a system for generating the mercernary company as well as individual characters.
Armored Trooper VOTOMS
1st ed by Tim Eldred, Paul Sudlow, Mike Pondsmith, Benjamin Wright (1998) R Talsorian
A sci-fi RPG based on the Japanese anime series, set in the far-future featuring mecha combat and over-the-top action. It uses the Fuzion system (a mix of RTG's Interlock and Hero's Champions).
Michael T. Desing's Army Ants: The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Michael T. Desing (1999) Teddy Bear Press
2nd ed (2001)
3rd ed (2006)
An anthropomorphic-animals RPG of playing ants, beetles, crickets, and/or ladybugs engaged with nefarious bees, wasps, spiders, stinkbugs, and other nasties. Warfare takes place in your own backyard (or other nearby plot of land), but uses miniature machineguns, tanks, etc. The system uses roll (based on attribute and skill) vs target number. It has random-roll, class-based character creation. Advancement is level-based.
Army of Darkness Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Shane Lacy Hensley (2005) Eden Studios
A darkly humorous fantasy RPG based on the 1993 Sam Raimi film, about modern-day misfits thrown into Earth's past with hordes of undead to fight. There is a selection of settings from ancient Sumeria to pulp era. Character archetypes include an archeologist, a swashbuckler, a gunslinger, a reporter, and a game designer (!). It uses the Cinematic Unisystem -- a variant of the Unisystem (originally from Witchcraft) developed for the Buffy the Vampire Slayer RPG.
Arrowflight: The Edge of Fantasy
1st ed by Todd Downing, Ron Dugdale (2002) Deep7
An epic fantasy genre RPG, set in the Empire of Corvel where the King has just been assassinated. The system handles action resolution using a dice-pool system, rolling d6's equal to attribute against a target number based on skill. Character creation is point-bought attributes and skills.
Arsenal of Heaven
1st ed by Tim Gray (2008) Silver Branch Games
An RPG of modern supernatural fantasy, based around a minimalist dice pool system called the NUGGET rules. The player characters are modern people who have acquired the power items of ancient mythic figures like Thor's hammer, Monkey's wishing staff, or the sandals of Hermes. They are in conflict with shape-twisted "demons" from outside our world as well as other obstacles. Resolution calls for rolling a number of base dice for difficulty (2, 0, or -2), and adding dice for attribute (rated 0-2) and skill (rated 0-4). Character creation is limited point-based.
Ars Magica
1st ed by Jonathan Tweet, Mark Rein•Hagen (1987) Lion Rampant
2nd ed (1989)
3rd ed by Ken Cliffe, Mark Rein•Hagen (1992) White Wolf
4th ed by Jeff Tinball, John Nephew (1996) Atlas Games
5th ed by David Chart (2004) Atlas Games
An RPG set in "Mythic Europe" where hermetic magi work secretly in hidden covenants. The system is fairly simple: attribute + skill + 1d10, but the main rules are in the innovative magic system. The magic works by a "noun + verb" system. Magi have ratings in 10 "Forms" (nouns) and 5 "Arts" (verbs), given in Latin as fits the setting. Any spell corresponds to a noun/verb combination (like "Creo Ignem" meaning "Create Fire"). Resolving a spell means comparing (Form rating) + (Art rating) + 1d10 vs level of difficulty.
Artesia: Adventures in the Known World
1st ed by Mark Smylie (2005) Archaia Studios Press
A fantasy RPG set in an alternate history 15th century Europe where monotheism is not dominant, based on the Artesia series of comic books written and illustrated by Mark Smylie. It uses a variant of the Fuzion system with a certain amount of tailoring for the specific genre.
Ascendancy - Rogue Marshall
1st ed by Tim Westhaven (2012) Broken Tower
A dark fantasy RPG using the "FateStorm Virtual Reality System (VRS)". It is set in Ashendrya, The Endless City, where industrial cabals and cults hold power - and other dangers include gangs, serial killers, and mad inventors.
a|state
1st ed by Malcolm Craig (2004) Contested Ground Studios
A dark science fantasy RPG set in a place known only as "The City". It has advanced technology but also is plagued by the remnants of a magical cataclysm from a thousand years ago known as "The Shift". It uses a percentile skill-based system -- roll under stat/skill on 1d100. Character creation is limited point-based (attribute points and skill points), with various origins and occupations offering suggested skills.
Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea
1st ed by Jeffrey Talanian (2012) North Wind Adventures
A variant of the original D&D game, part of the "Old School Renaissance", published under the Open Game License with a focus on emulating the weird fantasy genre of Robert E. Howard, Clark Ashton Smith, and H.P. Lovecraft. There are no demi-human races, but only human races such as Vikings, Kimmerians, Amazons, Picts, Kelts, Atlanteans and Hyperboreans. There are also many subclasses including Berserker, Barbarian, Warlock, Witch, Priest, Pyromancer, Bard, Assassin, Ranger, Druid, Shaman and Scout. The core mechanics are changed to streamline some resolution - such as generalizing the d6 roll for open doors to any moderate physical task, or the percentile roll for bend bars to any extraordinary tasks. However, there is still no universal resolution mechanic or skill system.
Astrobirdz RPG
1st ed by James M. Ward (2008) Bill Cobb Produtions, Inc.
A humorous sci-fi RPG about anthropomorphic birds that fly on surfboards in space, based on a related card game. It was briefly published as a boxed set including Player's Guide, Referee's Guide, and Birdznest Nebula Guide.
Asylum
1st ed by Aaron Rosenberg (1997) Clockworks Games
A horror game set 150 years in the future where everyone is insane after an biological disaster that darkened the skies with mutant spores. The majority of the world's population lives in Wards: city-sized secure areas where the population of inmates is fed, watched, and treated by the Warden. The mechanics are a simple skill-based system, which uses colored marbles instead of dice: draw out two marbles from a bag of 10 (2 each of 5 colors). The colors map onto numbers 1-5, but for various charts the individual colors matter. It uses point-based character generation.
The Atlantean Trilogy: The Arcanum, The Lexicon, The Bestiary
1st ed by Stephan Michael Sechi, Vernie Taylor (1980) Bard Games
A traditional fantasy game set in Atlantis of a mythic antedeluvian age. It uses a class- and level-based system using d20 and d100, similar to D&D in that there is no universal mechanic. There is a skill system, implemented as minor binary advantages (i.e. you either have a skill or you on't). Character creation is limited point-based, but dominated by race and class. It includes a distinct magic system, divided into Mysticism, Black Magic, High Magic, Low Magic, Divine Magic, Elemental Magic, Sorcery, and Enchantment.
Atlantis: The Second Age
1st ed by Scott Agnew (2005) Morrigan Press
A traditional fantasy game set in Atlantis of a mythic antedeluvian age, an adaptation of the 1980 from Atlantean Trilogy from Bard Games.
Atomic Highway - Post Apocalyptic Roleplaying
1st ed by Colin Chapman (2009) Radioactive Ape Designs
A post-apocalyptic RPG using the "V6 Engine" as its system.
Attack of the Humans
1st ed by Devin Durham (1990) Rapport Games
A humorous horror-genre combat system / RPG based on "B-" horror movies, fighting alien brain men, evil stuffed toys, blind telepathic albindo sewer 'gators, and more. It uses a simple system of 3 attributes (Brains, Fitness, and Common Sense) which correspond to the classes of Brainiac, Athlete, and Typical Person. Character creation is class-based with point-bought skills.
Aurora
1st ed by Stephen Mulholland, Chris Page, Chris Mills (2002) Aurora Games
A hard science-fiction spacefaring game, set in a distant future where humans have colonised space in cooperation with six other spacefaring races. There is a focus on exploration and interaction among the highly-detailed alien species. Action resolution uses "failure dice", where you choose how many d10's to roll. You get a constant bonus equal to that number, but each roll equal to or less than that number subtracts 2 from your total. Thus, choosing more dice is riskier but gives a chance at a higher total. Character creation is open point-based.
Avengers of Justice
1st ed by Joseph Hillmer, George Rahm (1994) Better Games
A superhero game where resolution is based on genre and drama rather than stats, using the "Free-Style Roleplay" system from Crimson Cutlass. By the rules, it is a disadvantage for a Villian to eliminate the Hero as the comic line would then cease to run and the Villain would get canceled with it. The game includes tables of genre cliches, action resolution, etc.
Awesome Adventures
1st ed by Willow Palecek (2008) self-published
A role-playing game of over-the-top action adventure, using a variant of the FATE system (Fantastic Adventures in Tabletop Entertainment) from Spirit of the Century. The rules are written with the goal of quick, easy, fast-moving play. The game book is independently published via Lulu.com.
Babylon 5: Roleplaying Game and Fact Book
1st ed by Matthew Sprange (2003) Mongoose Publishing
2nd ed (2006)
A sci-fi game based on the TV series "Babylon 5". It uses a variant of the rules from third edition Dungeons & Dragons (aka d20). The book is not a complete game, and requires the D&D Players Handbook for character generation, skills, and experience. It includes descriptions for six races and eight classes, plus modified combat rules and rules for telepathy and spacecraft battles.
The Babylon Project
1st ed by Joseph Cochran (1997) Chameleon Eclectic
A sci-fi game based on the TV series "Babylon 5". The rules are reasonably laid out, with a straightforward skill-based system. The combat system is fairly complex, with a hex-pattern hit location chart and a table relating damage amount and type.
Bacchanal
1st ed by Paul Czege (2005) Half-Meme Press
A mini-RPG about a night of madness in 61 A.D., in the Italian harbour town of Puteoli. The god Bacchus and his satyrs have descended from the hills to induce an irresistable madness of drunkenness, violent crime, and lust. Three other gods are also present: Venus, goddess of love and lust; Pluto, who has come to see the most base crimes of men; and Minerva, enraged by the mindless brutality and of a mind to put a stop to it. The PCs have each been accused of a crime against the empire, and they need to find their lost companion and flee Puteoli before they are caught and killed by the soldiers that are looking for them. The game consists of rolling a handful of dice, with different dice representing the gods, the soldiers, the companion, and wine. Depending on which die is highest, the player is given directions to narrate the scene.
BARBAREN! The Ultimate Macho Role Playing Game
1st (German) ed by Frank Tarcikowski (2009) Vagrant Workshop
1st (English) ed by Frank Tarcikowski (2011) Vagrant Workshop
A satirical fantasy RPG that describes itself as going "far beyond the limits of good taste" - where the PCs are giant barbarian men filled with raging testosterone, and the rules focus on both fighting and seduction. Character creation is a mix of point-based and random-roll, and there is only one core attribute - Virility. All PCs have a Virility of 3. The players then split 25 points between the secondary stats Dangerous and Attractive, which are spent to take actions in fighting or seduction (respectively), and are lost by being being wounded or refused. Players roll 1d6 each for their initial pools of Aggro and Horny points that can be spent for bonus dice. They select 7 tricks - one-shot abilities such as "double strike" or "electrifying touch". Players also define 3 free-form Strengths (or 4 Strengths and 1 Weakness) along with 2 Character Traits, a Goal in Life, and 2-3 Bonds to NPCs (including desire, rivalry, and/or oath). Resolution is by rolling d6s equal to Virility, plus 1 die for describing the scene well, plus 1 die for using a tactical advantage, plus dice supplied by character aiding you, and modifying dice for Strengths, Weaknesses, or Bonds. Aggro points can be spent for bonus dice in fighting, and are gained through sex. Horny points can be spent for bonus dice in seduction, and are gained by fighting.
Barbarians of Lemuria
1st ed by Simon Washbourne (2008) Beyond Belief Games
Legendary ed (2009)
A swords & sorcery fantasy RPG, inspired by primarily by Lin Carter's Thongor of Lemuria series along with Conan, Elric, and Fafhrd & The Grey Mouser. It is set in an archetypal world (Lemuria) that is just recovering from a final war against the sorcerer-kings who had ruled for centuries. Along with humans, there are nomadic blue-skinned giants (Ceruleans), savage jungle-dwelling apemen (Grooth), and secretive birdmen (Haklaton). It uses its own system. Resolution calls for combining 2d6 + attribute - difficulty, where 9 and above is a success. Hero Points can be spent to re-roll dice, raise level of success, cheat death, and even change game-world facts (with GM permission). Character creation is limited point-based. The player distributes 4 points among the four main attributes (Strength, Agility, Mind and Appeal) and 4 points among the combat abilities (Brawl, Melee, Ranged and Defence); selects 4 careers from a provided list; then selects a place of origin and either one trait/advantage or two traits/advantages and a flaw. It includes a freeform magic system for sorcery, gods, and alchemy.
Barbarians Versus
1st ed by Nathan J. Hill (2005) Key 20 Publishing Mystic Ages Online
A mini-roleplaying game about medieval fantasy barbarians fighting reptilian invaders from beyond the stars.
Barony Fantasy Role-Play
1st ed by Joseph Hillmer, George Rahm (1993) Better Games
An oriental fantasy RPG, published in magazine format in three books. One book handles character creation and basic mechanics, one book walks GMs through developing scenarios, and the last one is on dragon battles. It uses the "Free-Style Roleplay" system from Crimson Cutlass. Reviewed in White Wolf #26.
BASH! Basic Action Super Heroes
1st ed by Chris Rutkowsky (2005) Basic Action Games
Ultimate ed (2009)
A superhero RPG with a simple system. Action resolution is by rolling 2d6 (with doubles open-ending), multiplying by attribute (1-5), adding modifiers, and comparing with difficulty. Skills are binary -- lacking a skill means -4 on the die roll before multiplying. In combat, if a hit is scored, the damage is the difference between a damage roll (usually Brawn + attack bonuses) and a soak roll (usually Brawn + Armor). Character creation is limited point-based. First, spread 7 points among the three attributes (Brawn, Agility, and Mind). Second, spread 9 points on powers. Third, pick a number of Agility skills equal to Agility, and Mind skills equal to Mind.
BASH! Fantasy
1st ed by Chris Rutkowsky (2005) Basic Action Games
A fantasy RPG using a variant of the system in BASH!.
Basic Role-Playing
1st ed by Greg Stafford, Lynn Willis (1980) Chaosium
1st ed by Jason Durall, Sam Johnson, Steve Perrin, Steve Hedrickson, Ray Turney (2008) Chaosium
This is a short universal RPG system, although as originally published it only supported fantasy or early history. The original booklet was intended as an introduction for beginners to Chaosium's RuneQuest, Call of Cthulhu, and Stormbringer games. These used roughly the same system which BRP explained. BRP is a percentile skill system: roll under skill(0-100) on percentile dice, or roll on the "resistance table" for attribute (3-18) vs difficulty. Character creation is random-roll attributes. In the introductory booklet, skills are fixed but can be improved with experience. In 1982, the booklet was packaged with 3 genre books in Worlds of Wonder.
Batman RPG
1st ed by Jack A. Barker, Greg Gorden, Ray Winninger (1988) Mayfair Games
2nd ed by Ray Winninger (1989)
A superhero RPG based on playing characters from the "Batman" comic series from DC Comics. It used a "lite" version of the DC Heroes system (aka MEGS).
Battleaxe RPG
1st ed by Donald E. Olson, K. Douglas Woolsey (2004) Sixteen Coal Black Horses
Reforged ed (2006)
A fantasy RPG set on the war-ravaged world of Mordredica, an ancient battlefield of the Gods and prison of the Forty Sorcerers. It is inhabited by races including human, elf, dwarf, orc, and wulfir (wolf-men). Character creation is a mix of random-roll and limited point-based. The six attributes (Vigor, Action, Conviction, Savvy, Imagination, and Fortitude) are each determined by (racial base) + 2d6, after which from 4 to 10 points can be moved between attributes. A profession can be determined by a die roll or choice, and a choice of Mastery (Warrior, Ranger, or Mage). Resolution is by rolling under a target number based on attribute using 1d20, with roll - target number for the level of success ("span").
Battle Born
1st ed by Joseph Hillmer, George Rahm (1992) Better Games
A sci-fi mini-RPG published in Space Gamer magazine, issue #1. It is based on a portion of the space marine RPG Era Ten.
Battlelords of the 23rd Century
1st ed by Lawrence R. Sims (1990) Optimus
2nd ed (1991)
3rd ed (1992)
4th ed (1993)
5th ed (1999)
A "deep space" sci-fi RPG that focuses on an Alliance of 27 alien races who desperately seek to ward off the threat of internal destruction while simultaneously exploring the vast uncharted regions of space. It uses a d100, skill-based system. Reviewed in White Wolf #35.
Battlemaster
1st ed by Chris Norman, Jody Ellis (1988) Archive Gaming Pty Ltd
A generic fantasy RPG produced in Australia. It has no specific setting, though it does have a bestiary and references to various worlds of experience including natural, ethereal, hades, limbo, and cosmos. The system uses classes, levels, and experience points. Skills include general and class-specific, and are resolved by rolling under skill on percentile dice. Combat is resolved by skill rolls, with armor reducing the damage of hits. It includes a magic system where spells require power points, mana, or both - and may be subject to Karmic Influence, a luck attribute. The basic game has a bestiary with monsters including a giant carnivorous kangaroo.
Battlestar Galactica Role Playing Game
1st ed by Jamie Chambers, James Davenport, Sean Everette, Patrick Kapera, Nathan Rockwood, Floyd C. Wesel (2007) Margaret Weis Productions
A space opera RPG based on the modern television series created by Ronald D. Moore that started in 2004. It uses the "Cortex" system adapted from the Sovereign Stone fantasy system and Serenity RPG. Attributes and skills are rated in a a step die system with twelve ranks: d2, d4, d6, d8, d10, d12, d12+d2, d12+d4, d12+d6, d12+d8, d12+d10, d12+d12. Action resolution is by rolling attribute die plus skill die. Characters have six attributes (Agility, Strength, Vitality, Alertness, Intelligence, Willpower), along with skills and advantages. It also includes a plot point mechanic. Plot Points can be spent before a roll for an extra die (costing 1 per rank), after the roll to raise the total (costing 1 per +1), or to manipulate the story (scaled from 1-3 for convenient coincidence to 11+ for "saving your bacon").
Battlestations
1st ed by Jeff Siadek, Jason Siadek (2004) Gorilla Games
A mixed boardgame and role-playing game which integrates character actions with spaceship actions. Players track their characters' positions on the spaceship layouts (also used for boarding actions) and the ships' positions on the hex map. If you want the ship to turn or speed up, a character has to take an action to make it so. If you want the ship's guns to fire at an enemy ship, a character has to take an action to fire the guns. Character creation uses six species and four professions (Pilot, Marine, Scientist, and Engineer).
Battletech: A Time of War
1st ed by Herbert A. Beas II (2010) Catalyst Game Labs
A sci-fi RPG in the world of the Battletech boardgame, set in a 31st century where constant wars are fought by giant robots - a successor to the earlier Mechwarrior RPG. Resolution uses 2d6 + skill + modifiers vs. difficulty, possibly modified by burning Edge points before or after the roll. Character creation is limited point-based.
Beach Bunny Bimbos with Blasters
1st ed by Richard Tucholka (1991) Tri-Tac Games
A humorous sci-fi RPG of alien invasion (a take-off of BTRC's Macho Women with Guns). Martians are taking over, reviving the horrors of plastic flamingos and Disco, and only California beach bunnies can spot them (due to their uncluttered brains). It uses a percentile skill system (roll under skill on d100), with mixed random-roll and point-bought character creation.
Beast Hunters
1st ed by Christian Griffen, Lisa Griffen (2007) Berengad Games
A game for two players set in an original fantasy setting where tribal hunters stalk mythical beasts through jungles -- combined with mystic rituals and spirits.
Beasts, Men, & Gods
1st ed by Bill Underwood (1980) Imagination Unlimited Imagination Unlimited The Game Masters
A fantasy RPG. Character creation has combined classes and races (like original D&D). Advancement is level-based. It was a small-press offering published locally in Kansas.
Beat to Quarters
1st ed by Neil Gow (2009) Omnihedron Games
A role-playing game of naval action in the Napaleonic era. The resolution system is based on playing cards, where each player has their own deck of cards. The players draws a pool of cards based on stat to resolve an entire combat or other conflict, where each card that beats a randomly-drawn "Card of Fate" is one success. Play is structured around mechanically-defined missions. The system also includes mechanics for social advancement, ship-to-ship combat, weather, and grog. Character creation uses a lifepath system.
Becoming Heroes
1st ed by W. Austin Bookheimer, John LeBoeuf-Little, Kit La Touche (2011) Transneptune Games
A role-playing game designed for the genre of epic fantasy, with story-oriented mechanics. It uses freeform traits, which add to make a d6 dice pool used to resolve conflicts. In addition to determining success, players may still gain things if they lose a conflict and/or may get new traits to use later. Players also have beads for "destiny" and "doom". These are used to fuel threads (meta-story effects) or to modify conflicts. The character has an "arc" like Lost King for Aragorn or Dutybound for Frodo. If a player follows their arc, they gain benefits including new threads or more beads. Character creation is by picking 8 primary traits (descriptors of the character), 3 ties (relationships to other people), 3 circumstances (starting situations the character is in), 1 virtue (determining when to get beads of destiny/doom), 1 arc and 4 threads.
Behind Enemy Lines
1st ed by William H. Keith, Jr., Jordan Weisman, Ross Babcock, Eric Turn, Steve Turn (1982) FASA
2nd ed (1985) The Companions
A military RPG set in WWII on the Western front. The system is similar to the original Traveller rules.
Best Friends: A Role-Playing Game About Girlfriends And All Their Petty Hatreds
1st ed by Gregor Hutton (2006) BoxNinja
A game where the PCs are "best friends". There are five stats: Pretty, Cool, Smart, Tough, and Rich. Each PC's stats are set by how all the other players rate your character. Each player answers five questions for her PC, of the form "I hate _____ because she is (Prettier/Cooler/etc.) than me". Then the number of PCs who hate your character for how Cool she is becomes that PC's Cool stat.
Beyond Mortal Men
1st ed by Christopher Helton (2005) Battlefield Press
A superhero RPG rules system. This is strictly speaking a supplement for use with the Action! System from Gold Rush Games.
Beyond the Supernatural
1st ed by Randy McCall, Kevin Siembieda, Erick Wujcik (1988) Palladium Books
2nd ed (2005) Palladium Books
A contemporary horror RPG, using a variant of the Palladium System. It includes supernatural and psychic powers, plus a magic system (including ley lines).
Bifrost
Volume 1: Faerie ed (1977) L.W.Felstead Ltd
Volume 2: Combat ed (1978) Skytrex Ltd.
Volume 3: Magic ed (1978) Skytrex Ltd.
Volume 4 ed by A.R. Chandler, B.D. Cooper, G.D. Evans, J. le Grabbe-Phipps, D.R. Henderson, G.J. Philp, A.R. Williamson (1979) Skytrex Ltd.
Bifrost ed by K. White, K. Minear, S. Johnson, G. Highley (1982) Skytrex Ltd.
A medieval fantasy miniatures combat system and RPG, using a fairly complex system. Originally published as a series of four separate rulebook volumes. These were eventually expanded and combined into a single volume, published in 1982. In addition to combat and characters, the system covers planar travel and divine intervention. Volume 1 ("Faerie") is 74 pages staple-bound with a dark blue cover with white illustration of a dragon. Volume 2 ("Combat") is 36 pages staple-bound with a light blue cover with white illustration of castle. Volume 3 ("Magic") is 84 loose pages with a purple cover with illustration of wizard. Volume 4 is 90 pages glue-bound, with a yellow cover with a black illustration of a goblin-like creature. Volume 4 contains rules on unarmed, mounted, and aerial combat, horses, fatigue, firearms and literacy, plus creature descriptions.
Big Bang Comics Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Chris Carter (2006) Pisces All Media
A superhero RPG based on the series of comic books of the same name, a retro take-off series of many classic comics of the Golden Age and Silver Age, founded by Gary Carlson. It is a standalone game using a variant of the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D called the Golden System. It uses the standard ability scores, levels, attacks and skills, and class mechanics -- while adding disadvantages ("Negative Feats") that allow a bonus feat, as well as a large selection of 200+ new feats including various superheroic abilities. The core book includes statistics for many of the Big Bang characters -- the Blitz, Ultiman, Knight Watchman, Thunder Girl, and others -- as well as background on the universe, gadget rules, mass combat and vehicle combat rules, and alternate dimensions.
Big Eyes, Small Mouth
1st ed by Mark MacKinnon (1997) Guardians of Order
2nd ed by David L. Pulver, Mark MacKinnon (2000)
A universal Japanese anime role-playing game, intended to cover subgenres from giant mecha to romantic comedy. It has a very simple system (the "Tri-Stat" system) with three attributes and ads/disads -- the base game has no skills. Action resolution is by 2d6 against modified attribute. The 2nd edition incorporated skill rules, lots of advantages/disadvantages, and mecha rules into the core rulebook.
The Bizenghast Adventure Game
1st ed by Clint Krause (2008) KNRPG Productions
A urban fantasy/horror RPG based on the manga series created by M. Alice LeGrow and published by Tokyopop. The player characters are agents of the afterlife - including humans, inhumans, and spirits - charged with hunting ghosts, resolving their problems, and sending them on to the next world. It uses the "Epiphany Engine" game system. Resolution uses rolling under attribute on 1d20, and if the roll exactly matches the rating is raised by one (called an epiphany).
Black Seven
1st ed by Stew Wilson (2012) Zero Point Information
A roleplaying game in the genre of stealth action technothriller games like Deus Ex, Alpha Protocol, and Splinter Cell. The player characters work for an independent espionage organisation, Black Seven, set ten minutes in the future. Action resolution is by rolling 2d6 and adding an action number. A total of 11 or above is success, while 10 or lower is failure. It has an abstract system for breaking into Facilities without using maps. The Facility has a Threat Level ranging from 3 to 5, and failed rolls can affect the level via the temporary status traits Noticed and Exposed.
The Black Spot
1st ed by Mark Silcox (2009) Grasshopper Games
A horror genre storytelling game for 3 to 8 players inspired by the films of Sam Raimi, George Romero, and Wes Craven. It uses a special deck of 80 Plot Cards along with 8 Backstory Cards and 8 Escape! Cards. It also uses 1d20 but only for choosing a random name, trait, and occupation for each character. A single deck is assembled - taking Backstory and Escape! cards equal to the number of players, and Plot cards based on number of players and desired number of rounds. Each turn, every player is dealt a card and then each player in turn narrates for a short time following instructions for that card type. The basic game includes nine scenarios.
Blackwatch Technical Reference Manual
1st ed by Ted Greer, Peter Christian (1989) Different Worlds Publications
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, about members of a freelance trouble-shooting organizations ("Blackwatch"). Besides humans, there are 4 alien races described. It uses a skill-based system, including rules for starship combat and robots.
Blade & Crown
1st ed by Rachel Kronick (2012) self-published
A fantasy roleplaying game using a detailed skill-based system. Action resolution is by rolling a pool of d10s based on skill, along with a single d12 that provides flavor for the result. Character creation includes 12 basic attributes along with freeform traits and social class.
Blazing Rose: A Story Game of Romantic Rivalry
Ashcan ed by Edward "Sabe" Jones (2009) self-published
A collaborative storytelling game for three to six players, about a group of friends vying for the affection of a common Beloved. It usese playing card mechanics, where conflicts are resolved using special trick-taking rules. Each player plays a card face-down and states a Hope, then reveal their cards. The player with the highest card not greater than their attribute takes the trick, then distributes the cards to the other players to change their Affection stat.
Bliss Stage
Ignition ed by Ben Lehman (2007) Tao Games
Interim ed (2009)
A post-apocalyptic sci-fi role-playing game for 2-7 players. The Earth has been occupied by alien invaders and all adults have been put into comas by psychic alien technology. The player characters are teenage resistance fighters (age 13 to 17) battling an alien occupation on a psychic plane using giant robots (ANIMa). A core part of the mechanics is that the robot's power comes from the pilot's relationships - especially sexual ones. Each relationship is measured by two ratings: Intimacy and Trust. It uses a d6 (or Fudge dice) dice pool system, broken into mechanics for missions and interludes. During a mission, the mecha pilot rolls dice equal to total Intimacy of relationships allocates them to categories. Damage may occur by inflicting Stress on relationships or Trauma. In interludes, relationships can be modified as well as Stress or Trauma relieved.
Blood: The Roleplaying Game of Modern Horror
1st ed by Norley Tucker, Stephen Osborn (1990) Underground Games
1st ed by James Desborough (2006) Postmortem Studios
A modern-day horror RPG where PC's face various film-based creatures including zombies, Angels of Pain (from Hellraiser), Candarion Demons (from Evil Dead), The Blob (from the film of the same name). It uses a percentile system. Character creation is d100 for each attribute, and skills chosen by a career package plus points based on attributes. The combat system is quite gory, with 400+ weapons and 25 critical hit tables. It is a 112 page book, with 2 scenarios to help you get started.
Blood & Honor: Samurai Tragedy in Old Japan
1st ed by John Wick (2010) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A semi-historical game set in an unspecified period of medieval Japan. The player characters are generally samurai. It uses a dice pool system that adapts Aspects from the FATE system in Spirit of the Century. The player rolls a number of d6s equal to attribute plus 3 dice for each aspect invoked. If the total is over 10 or the opponent's roll, the character succeeds and the player can narrate what happens. There is also a wager system that lets the player remove a die for a chance at more narrative power.
Bloodbath
1st ed by Rick Slawson, Troy Christensen (1989) TC International
A fantasy mini-RPG set on the barbaric world of Helboria. The PC's are warriors who explore this world, while killing stuff along the way. The combat system is based on a hex-map, and includes graphic descriptions with various critical hits. It uses "Bodily Mutilation Capacity" in place of hit points. Published in a set of 24-page rulebook (complete with a sample dungeon adventure), a world map, hex grid map, and counters. A companion game, Bloodchant, added spellcasting rules to the system.
Blood Dawn
1st ed by Lawrence R. Sims (1996) Optimus
A post-nuclear-apocalypse science fantasy RPG set 60 years after the devastation, in a world of "magic, mutations, and machines". The PC's are prophets seeking to restore civilization from the reigning barbarism. It uses a basic roll-under-stat with modifiers. Character creation is limited point-bought.
Bloode Island
1st ed by Todd Downing (1999) Deep7
XPG ed by Todd Downing, John Sullivan, Mark Bruno (2002)
Diceless ed (2004)
A mini-game of swashbuckling pirate action, set in a historical pastiche of varied periods from the Age of Exploration and the golden age of piracy. The original game used the 1PG rules from Deep7, where resolution is rolling 1d6 and getting under attribute or skill, where 1 is always success and 6 is always failure. Later editions used the "XPG" system and then later the Active Exploits Diceless Roleplaying rules. The last includes new rules for Mojo and Naval Combat.
Blood Games: Occult Horror Role-playing
1st ed by clash bowley, Jason Ludwig, Wesley Fornero (2004) Flying Mice LLC
A modern-day horror RPG, set in an alternate reality where a evil demons are rampaging. In the past, a god-like figure ("Norandon") saved mankind from the demons, giving humans magic. However, Science has eroded the belief which is necessary for magic, via a process called "Nullity". There is no great conspiracy, but scattered hunters work for the Force of Light to fight vampires and demons. The rules use a percentile skill-based system. Character creation has random-roll attributes and a lifepath mechanic for each year over 10, which generates skills, metaskills, and attribute improvements. Characters may have a "path" -- which are supernatural powers of a variety of sorts. The second edition ("Blood Games II") uses a version of the "StarPool" system, where resolution is by rolling d20s equal to skill, where every result under attribute is a success.
Blood of Heroes
1st ed by Tony Oliveira, Ray Hedman, Joshua Marquart, Christopher Tatro (1998) Pulsar
A superhero/supervillian RPG. It uses the "MEGS" system from DC Heroes, where everything is rated in exponential "AP" values. Actions are resolved by rolling 2d10 on a universal table of offensive AP vs defensive AP.
Blowback
1st ed by Elizabeth Shoemaker (2010) Two Scooters Press
A modern-day thriller RPG inspired by the television series "Burn Notice" as well as the Bourne trilogy movies. Each player creates one Professional - a spy/operative who have been blacklisted - and one Civilian connected to another player's Professional. Character creation is choosing a type of Professional (general "Lifer" or specialized "Artist") and distributing four values among the four attributes: Commando, Diversion, Pavement, Provocateur. Players also distribute a set of values among rated Relationships, as well as picking background details. The players collectively determine the job they did together that went wrong to get all the Professionals blacklisted. Play is divided into two large phases: Analysis and Operation. Resolution involves either taking a fixed number of successes equal to half of stat, or rolling d6s equal to stat where 4-6 is a success. All successes during the Analysis phase are kept as dice to be used in Operation phase. In addition, the number of success dice minus failed dice is a modifier to the next roll on that stat, called Momentum.
Blue Planet
1st ed by Jeff Barber, Greg Benage, John Snead, Jason Werner (1997) Biohazard Games
2nd ed (2000) Fantasy Flight Games
Revised ed by Jeffrey Barber, Greg Benage, Allan T. Grohe Jr., Greg Porter, Brian Schoner, John Snead, Mark Stout, James Sutton, Jason Werner, Andrew Whincup (2012) RedBrick LLC
A post-ecological-apocalypse game set on a lush alien world nearly entirely ocean-covered. The majority of the very thick book is a very detailed description of the world, history, and culture. It is set in a future where Earth discovers a wormhole just outside the solar system which leads to a waterworld dubbed "Poseidon". Colonization had just begun, spurred by the discovery of a longevity ore called "Long John". Contact is interrupted by a catastrophic grain blight on Earth, leading to 75 years of rough independent life for the colonists. The 1st edition rule system is a semi-complex percentile skill-based system. The 2nd edition has a completely new system which uses dice pools: roll d10's equal to your aptitude (1 to 3), take the lowest roll, and try to get less than your attribute+skill+modifiers. In both, character creation is semi-random attributes and point-bought skills.
Blue Rose: The Roleplaying Game of Romantic Fantasy
1st ed by Jeremy Crawford, Dawn Elliott, Steve Kenson, John Snead (2005) Green Ronin Publishing
A fantasy genre game set on an original world, Aldea. It is populated by various races including the ancient and mystical Vata, the Sea-folk; the Night People; and the Rhydan (psychic intelligent animals). The rules are a standalone system (the "True20" system) loosely based on the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D, adding in rules variations from Mutants & Masterminds. There are only three core classes: adept, expert, and warrior -- and variety instead comes from more and more variety of feats. It also includes a wound track damage system based on a 1d20 roll to resist damage, and a new magic system based on feats, where spells cost fatigue. The combat system is modified to remove full-round attacks and attacks of opportunity, and adding some non-attack options.
Bob, Lord of Evil
1st ed by Kevin Davies (1993) Peregrine
A humorous RPG set in the "Dark Lands" with a techno- fantasy horror theme. The game is intended particularly for characters from other game universes to drop in for light-hearted adventures.
Bogeyman
1st ed by Ashok Desai (2010) Sane Studios
A role-playing game of personal horror, set in the modern world including psychic phenomena such as ghosts, spirits, and psychics. The Bogeyman is contained within the minds of the player characters, controlled by the GM and released by three moments - sin, madness, or tragedy. The rules use playing cards, with each player needing their own deck and the game master needing two. Players each get a hand of five cards, and must play all five in separate tests before refreshing, unless they play a joker. Resolution is by card number plus stat versus a difficulty number. The rules include both physical and social combat and damage.
Bones the Role Playing Game
1st ed by Andrew J. Martone (2004) Peregrine
A fantasy role playing game in which characters, monsters, equipment, and obstacles are all represented by customized six-sided dice. These can be made by gluing printed icon sheets onto dice, marking on blank dice, or simulated with a computerized dice roller utility. Each die has icons such as "Universal Success", "Physical Success", "Mental Success", "Universal Hindrance", "Damage", and many icons for skills, magic, and special circumstances. Action resolution is by rolling your set of dice and counting applicable success icons, compared to the result of Challenge dice (if unopposed) or the opposed entity's dice (if opposed). Challenge dice have 2 out of 6 faces as "Null" which cancels one success. Character creation is open point-based of a sort: the player chooses icons for his four starting dice. One face is always "Universal Success", and one face is either "Physical Success" or "Mental Success", while the other four are freely chosen from the other choices.
The Book of Jalan
1st ed by Albert Bailey, clash bowley, Klaxon Bowley (2004) Flying Mice LLC
A fantasy game set on a Renaissance-to-Restoration era alien world where humanity has magic-like psionic powers. This is a standalone fantasy variant of the science fiction RPG Starcluster. There are four races: human, Alari (humanoids with supernaturally deep but engrossing memories), Khali (orc-like barbarians), and Bani (short, agile miners). It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation has either random-roll or point-based attributes; and a lifepath mechanic for each year over 10, which generates skills, metaskills, and attribute improvements.
The Book of LARP
1st ed by Mike Young, Gordon Olmstead-Dean, Miki Tracey, Mike Pohjola, Jeff Diewald, Ryan Markle, Sandy Antunes, Mike Beddes, John Kammer, John Kilgallon (2003) Interactivities, Inc.
A guide to writing and running live-action role-playing games (LARPs). It includes six sample games: "Trapped", "All the President's Zombies", "I Shall Not Want", "Michael Clambino's Fundraiser", "Humans vs Monsters: Diplomacy", and "Lost in the Stacks".
The Boomtown Planet
1st ed by Richard Parkinson (2005) Better Mousetrap Games Timeless Games
"Saturday" ed (2007)
A pulp style RPG set in the fictional city of Boomtown during the "Dirty 30s" of the U.S. -- with a focus on investigative reporting for its daily newspaper, the Planet. It is an over-the-top setting with ghosts and other supernatural influences, where there are only two countries: the corrupt Capital State and warmongering Klankeruberalles. It uses a dice pool system where you roll either your attributes in d6s (if you have the appropriate skill) or 1d6 (if you don't); and also declare odds or evens. The number of successes is the number of dice over the difficulty and matching your odd/even call. The six attributes are Strength, Endurance, Fortitude, Perception, Essence, and Agility. There is no character generation system -- only sixteen pre-generated members of the Boomtown Planet's staff.
Boot Hill
1st ed by Gary Gygax, Brian Blume (1975) TSR
2nd ed (1979)
3rd ed by Steve Winter (1990)
An early western RPG. It uses a mostly percentile resolution system. Character creation uses random-roll attributes (Strength, Coordination, Observation, Stature, and Luck) in the 1-20 range. Skills are point-bought with points based on your attributes. The third edition majorly changed the system, revising resolution to use only d6's and d20's instead of percentile rolls. There was a GM's screen and five 32-page adventure modules published for it from 1981 to 1984: "Mad Mesa", "Ballots & Bullets", "Lost Conquistador Mine", "Burned Bush Wells", and "Range War".
Bounty Head Bebop
1st ed by JP deHénaut (2008) Heroic Journey Publishing
A sci-fi RPG set in a gritty near future where the solar system has been colonized, but lawlessness is rampant in the Solar Frontier. It is loosely based on the anime series Cowboy Bebop. It uses the "Inverted 20" system that partly derives from D20, but resolves by rolling 1d20 under a target number modified by ability, skill, and/or difficulty. Attributes are rated from 1 to 5, and derive Initiative, Movement, Saves, Wounds, and Vitality points. There are also skills - divided into General, Combat, and Specialty - as well as binary Edges and Flaws. Characters start with 3 Edges and may take 3 more by taking corresponding Flaws. The system also includes psychic/feng shui powers. Combat is simple, and you can optionally use the same roll for hit and damage.
Bram Stoker's Dracula
1st ed by Barry Nakazano, David McKenzie (1993) Leading Edge
A cinematic vampire-hunting game covering periods from medieval to the present, based on the 1992 film. It's mechanics include the accumulation of "Clue Points" which allow the PC's to progress to the "Search Stage" and "Confrontation Stage" with various random encounters along the way. The system has an extremely simplified version of the combat rules in Phoenix Command, which is still quite complex.
Brave New World
1st ed by Matt Forbeck (1999) Pinnacle
2nd ed (2000) Alderac Entertainment Group
A superhero game in an alternate timeline, where the heroes are "deltas" that are fighting against a repressive U.S. government. Powers are handled by pre-building power packages (10 given in the basic game). The system is a fairly simple open-ended attribute+skill dice pool (d6) vs difficulty, similar to the D6 or Icon Systems.
Breaking the Ice: A Game about Love, for Two
1st ed by Emily Care Boss (2005) Black & Green Games
A game of romance designed for two players. Each of the two players creates a character which is in some ways a reversal of themselves -- such as another gender, culture, or orientation. After playing out three dates, the players add up their characters' Compatibilities and Attraction Levels. In general, five or more of both is Love Triumphant, but players are encouraged to discuss things. Players take turns gamemastering the date for each other, awarding dice to roll for those Levels based on story events, cleverness, and agreeing to the GM's ideas. The game awards dice for letting complications mess up your character's date, or otherwise adding in twists.
Broadsword
1st ed by Jeff Mejia, James Stubbs, Todd Downing (2007) Deep7
A 16-page self-styled "beer & pretzels" RPG emulating fantasy barbarian movies of the 1970s and 1980s, such as "Conan" and "Hawk the Slayer". It uses the 1PG mechanics from other Deep7 games. Action resolution is rolling 1d6 and getting under attribute or skill, where 1 is always success and 6 is always failure. This game adds brief systems for "advantages" and "magic", and also includes nine 1-page adventures.
Bubblegum Crisis
1st ed by Benjamin Wright, David Ackerman-Gray (1997) R Talsorian
A cyberpunk RPG based on the Japanese anime series, including a lot of background information on the show. It uses the Fuzion system.
Buccaneer
1st ed by Carl Smith (1979) Adversary Games
A pirate mini-RPG (16 pages), covering 17th and 18th centuries. The terse rules cover character creation, man-to-man and ship-to-ship combat, and treasure-hoarding.
Buck Rogers: XXVc
1st ed by Mike Cook, Michael Dobson, Jeff Grubb, Jim Ward, Warren Spector, Jeff Butler (1990) TSR
A sci-fi RPG loosely based on the comic and TV series, rewriting significant background. The setting is post-apocalyptic, with many dark elements. In 2456, Earth is devastated by war and recently freed from the tyrrany of Russo-American Mercantile (RAM) by the New Earth Order (NEO) and, of course, Buck Rogers. It uses a variant of the AD&D system with a more advanced skill system.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
1st ed by C.J. Carella (2002) Eden Studios
A modern-day monster-fighting RPG based on the U.S. television series. It uses the skill-based "Unisystem" from Witchcraft, with open point-based character creation and resolution by stat+d10 vs difficulty. There are two basic character types: heroes (like Buffy) and "white hats" (like Willow and Xander).
Bulldogs!
1st ed by Brennan Taylor, C. Austin Hogan, David Sklar, A.J. Hernandez, Jeremy Simmons (2004) Galileo Games
2nd ed (2011) Galileo Games
A science fiction / space opera game. The first edition was published as a supplement for third edition Dungeons & Dragons (aka d20). It is set in a distant small galaxy. It includes ten races, including a colorful near-human race, the Arsurbans. There are six new primary classes, including Bounty Hunter, Space Pilot, Engineer, and Space Pirate. It also includes starship combat rules.
Bunnies and Burrows
1st ed by Scott Robinson, B. Dennis Sustare (1976) FGU
2nd ed (1982)
A rabbit-adventure RPG in the genre of the Richard Adam's novel Watership Down. It uses class-based character creation, including herbalists (capable of concoctions like "Snuffball" sleep grenades), seers, and empathic healers. It has a rudimentary skill system and even martial arts rules (the humorous "Bunfoo").
Bureau 13: Stalking the Night Fantastic
1st ed by Richard Tucholka, Chris Belting (1983) Tri-Tac Games
2nd ed (1984)
3rd ed (1990)
A light-hearted supernatural conspiracy game about agents of a super-secret U.S. government agency dedicated to hunting down evil supernatural creatures while also protecting innocent supernaturals by keeping them secret. The system is fairly complex, including extensive damage rules.
Burning Empires
1st ed by Luke Crane (2006) self-published
A science fiction system based on the graphic novel series Iron Empires by Chris Moeller. It is set in a far future where human civilization of eight vast interstellar empires is on the verge of collapse in the face of an alien invasion. It uses a variant of the dice pool system in Burning Wheel. The system is greatly expanded in the World Burning process to jointly create the setting, and a staged system that creates different types of scenes (Color, Interstitial, Building, and Conflict) in response to strategic maneuvers in resisting the alien invasion.
The Burning Wheel
1st ed by Luke Crane (2002) self-published
Revised ed (2005)
A generic fantasy system, with an unspecified default setting -- feudal medieval with the usual dwarves, elves, and orcs. It uses a dice pool system, based on rolling d6's equal to stat against a target number of 2, 3, or 4 (depending on the "Shade" of the stat tested). The number of successes then must be greater than the task difficulty. Character creation is based on generating a year-by-year lifepath according to profession. Attributes are bought from a pool of Mental Attribute points and Physical Attribute points based on age. Skills are bought with skill points accumulated via the lifepath. There are two mental attributes -- Perception and Will -- and four physical attributes -- Power (i.e. strength), Agility, Speed, and Forte (i.e. endurance).
Burros and Banditos
1st ed (unknown) Sierra Madre Games
A semi-roleplaying game set on the Mexican border.
Bushido
1st ed by Paul Hume, Bob Charrette (1980) Tyr / Phoenix Games
2nd ed (1981) FGU
A fantasy RPG set in mythic Japan ("Nippon"), using a combined class and skill-based system.
Cadillacs and Dinosaurs
1st ed by Frank Chadwick (1990) GDW
A post-nuclear-apocalypse game in the strange world of the comic "Xenozoic Tales", where dinosaurs have reappeared on the Earth.
Cadwallon: The Free City
1st French ed by Arnaud Cuidet, Bruno Bechu, Damien Desnous, Franck Plasse, Gregoire Laakmann, Ivo Garcia, Jean Bay, Nicolas Raoult, Sebastien Celerin, Vincent Kaufmann, Willem Peerbolte, Xavier Spinat (2005) Rackham
1st English ed (2006) Rackham
A tactical fantasy role-playing game in French and English, designed for use with miniatures and compatible with the Confrontation fantasy miniatures game. The game world is a traditional fantasy world ("Aarklash") inhabited by Elves, Dwarves, Humans, Goblins, Orcs, Ogres, and Wolfen. The game is set in the free city of Cadwallon, which was founded by a mercenary company and leases troops to the various nations surrounding it that are in the process of entering a massive war, the Rag'narok. It uses a d6 dice pool system where characters have "attitudes" rather than standard attributes. The attitudes are Pugnacity, Style, Sleight, Opportunism, Discipline, and Subtlety. Character creation is by picking a race and culture (which modify attitudes from their base of 2), distributing some flexible points for skills and raising attitudes, and then picking 3 trade ranks from the 37 trades. Tasks are resolved by rolling a number of d6 equal to your skill level, taking the highest and adding the appropriate attribute to compare against the difficulty. In action scenes, dice are split between an action pool and reaction pool -- which are refreshed according to the character's trade scores.
Call of Cthulhu
1st ed by Sandy Petersen (1981) Chaosium
Designer's ed (1982)
2nd ed (1983)
3rd ed (1986)
4th ed (1989)
5th ed (1992)
5.5th ed (1998)
5.6th ed (2000)
20th Anniversary ed (2001)
Miskatonic University ed (2001)
6th ed by Sandy Petersen, Lynn Willis (2004)
25th Anniversary ed (2006)
A prolific horror game based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft, where PC's are investigators into the unknown who deal with horrors beyond comprehension. The basic game is set in 1920's U.S., but there are also well-supported lines for 1990's U.S. and 1890's England. It uses the Chaosium Basic Role-Playing system, with the notable addition of "Sanity". Sanity is a percentile stat which is damaged when encountering grotesque or other-worldly things. It can be regained only with difficulty: by psychiatric treatment or by knowing that horrors have been defeated. It also has a maximum that is the inverse of your "Mythos Knowledge" skill (max SAN is 100-skill), so the more you know about the truth the less sane you can be. Character creation involves random-roll attributes and percentile point-bought skills.
Call of Cthulhu Roleplaying Game (D20)
1st ed by Monte Cook, John Tynes (2002) Wizards of the Coast
A horror game based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft, where PC's are investigators into the unknown who deal with horrors beyond comprehension. The rules are a standalone system based on the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D. It adds rules for insanity, but is still more combat oriented than the original game from Chaosium.
Caper!
1st ed by John O'Brien (2006) self-published
A 'Host a Heist' party game of co-operative storytelling, where 2-6 players take on the roles of thieves who join forces to pull off a crime. The type of caper is up to the Mastermind, while of course the results are cooperative. Caper uses the "21 System" rules which require a deck of playing cards and poker chips to play. The game is independently published via Lulu.com.
Capes
1st ed by Anthony Lower-Basch (2005) Muse of Fire Games
A superhero RPG with no gamemaster per se. Instead, there are mechanics for narration of conflicts. There are a set of conflicts represented by index cards, each with two d6s (of different colors) on them.
carry. a game about war.
1st ed by Nathan Paoletta (2006) Hamsterprophet Productions
A short-form RPG where players play soldiers from a squad of U.S. Marines in the Vietnam war, who end up turning on each other amidst the tensions of war. Each PC has a single pool of dice, and has one of six profiles: Accuser, Brawler, Invincible, Warrior, Companion, and Soldier -- though profile can and will change during the game. Resolution works by a simple dice pool system where you roll a single die from your pool, but each time you roll you have to give away that die. The size of die (d4 through d12) is limited by the combination of your profile and the Approach you use (which is one of Violent, Strategic, Tactical, or Peaceful). The game is short-form, and has a fixed progression which ends when all the NPCs of the squad have been wounded, evacuated, or killed -- at which point all the PCs turn on each other.
Cartoon Action Hour
1st electronic ed by Cynthia Celeste Miller (2002) Spectrum Game Studios
1st print ed by Cynthia Celeste Miller (2003) Spectrum Game Studios Z-Man Games
An RPG designed to emulate the action-adventure cartoons of the 1980s, such as Thundarr the Barbarian, Transformers, G.I. Joe, and so forth. Character creation features an open-ended system for designing special abilities such as magic, psionics, gadgets, etc. Action resolution uses stat + 1d12 vs difficulty. It also includes genre rules for features like after-show messages ("...and knowing is half the battle"), character advancement between "seasons" of the series, and so forth.
Cassiopean Empire
1st ed by Raymond Norton (1982) Norton Games
Advanced ed by Raymond Norton, Ray Moats, James Gowan (1985)
A spacefaring sci-fi mini-RPG. The 1st edition was 16 pages; 2nd was two books 32 pages each. It was set in a Traveller-like space empire. The system included rules for the usual sci-fi conventions of starships, robots and aliens.
Castle Falkenstein
1st ed by Michael Pondsmith (1994) R Talsorian
A Victorian fantasy game, set in an alternate Earth with magic, elves, dwarves, and other strangeness. The genre is rather adventure pulp rather than period Victorian fiction. The system uses cards rather than dice, where both players and GM have a hand of cards that they play from for resolving actions.
Castle Perilous
1st ed by James T. Sheldon (1980) West Wind Simulations
A fantasy-genre RPG, emphasizing storytelling aspects. The system is class-based (9 classes), and has modifiers on resolution for acting and enthusiasm on the part of the players. For the magic system, the player must describe six parameters of a spell from memory - such as color, hand motion, and physical manifestation. For each one missed there is that chance that the spell fails. The set includes an introductory adventure and setting, possibly related to novels by John De Chancie (?).
Castles and Crusades
1st ed by Davis Chenault, Mac Golden (2004) Troll Lord Games
A fantasy-genre RPG with a simple rules-lite system, similar to and roughly compatible with pre-third editions of Dungeons & Dragons. Character creation involves rolling up six ability scores (Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma), choosing a race (from 7 options) and a class (from 13 options). Action resolution is based on 1d20 + attribute modifier + level - penalties vs target number. Target number is 12 for primary attribute rolls, or 18 otherwise.
Cat
1st ed by John Wick (2004) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A modern fantasy game appropriate for children and adults, where the PCs are cats who protect people from Boggins -- evil creatures that people can't see (like the Man Under the Bed) which feed on children's fears and rejoice in men's shortcomings. Cats also venture to the surreal Kingdom of Dreams. It uses a narration-focused dice-pool system, the "Advantage" system, where extra dice can be acquired by looking for advantages your character has in a particular situation, each of which earns an extra die.
Cendres
1st ed by Stephan Chapuis (2002) Editions du Matagot
A French-language post-apocalyptic science fiction RPG, whose name translates as "Ashes". It is set in Europe a hundred years after an asteroid strike (?) swept all the coastal regions in a tidal wave and ashes turned the sky dark for a year. It uses a skill-based system, of roll under stat on 1d20. Character creation is random-roll or point-bought stats (4d6 among seven main attributes, or distribute 100 points). There are also six personality attributes. It includes a detailed combat system including hit locations and a split of shock and wound damage.
The Centre of the Universe
1st ed by Richard Parkinson (2004) Timeless Games Better Mousetrap Games
Special ed (2004)
A science fantasy RPG, where gunslingers right alongside sapient suits of armor and sorcerors. It is set in a time when the fabric of reality is unraveling, at the Centre of the Universe -- a small fantasy region with floating islands (called marques) and small towns, with a mixture of medieval and early modern technology. Evil forces are undoing the whole of creation. It uses a skill-based system using d6's for resolution. Character creation is class-based, choosing from eight profiles: Adventurer, Architect (Wizard), Bard, Crusader, Dream Crafter (Illusionist), Gunslinger, Sentinel (Ghostly Armor), and Story Teller. Each class comes with a starting skill sets, but new skills unrelated to class can be added with experience.
Century's Edge
1st ed by Louis Hoefer (2009) Whole Sum Entertainment
A turn-of-the-century RPG that mixes history with popular Victorian novels such as Dracula and Robur the Conqueror. It uses a step-die system where each attribute is assigned a positive die and negative die. Resolution is by rolling both dice, taking the higher absolute value, with the the result being negative or positive depending on which die is higher. Character creation is by picking an Archetype that determined positive attribute die values, and a Background that determines negative attribute die values. The 10 Archetypes are Combatant, Outdoorsman, Rapscallion, Engineer, Scholar, Aristocrat, Believer, Illuminatus, Gnostic, and Jack. The Backgrounds include Militant, Affluent, Educated, Installed, Hard-laborer, Skilled-Laborer, Secretive Past, Privation, and Unrefined.
Chainmail
1st ed by Gary Gygax, Jeff Perren (1971) Guidon Games
2nd ed (1972)
An early set of medieval miniatures rules which was the precursor to the original Dungeons & Dragons.
Chain of Being: The Fantasy Roleplaying Game of Epic Absurdity
1st ed by J.T.T. Williams, Cory Katzenmeyer, Dan Geyer (2002) Limestone Publishing
A humorous fantasy RPG set in a fantasy world ("Paranesia") where the gods have been replaced by drunken louts who have messed up the gameability of everything. It has the usual fantasy elements such as elves, dwarves, orcs, and mages -- along with many humorous additions. It is available using the original "Higher Arc" system and also as a supplement for third edition Dungeons & Dragons (aka d20).
Challenges Game System
1st ed by Tom Moldvay (1986) Challenges Game Systems
A medieval fantasy mini-RPG (8 pages), similar in mechanics to AD&D.
Champions
1st ed by George MacDonald, Steve Peterson (1981) Hero Games
2nd ed (1982)
3rd ed (1984)
4th ed by George MacDonald, Steve Peterson, Rob Bell (1989)
A superhero roleplaying game, later (in the 4th edition) converted to a generic universal system (aka the "HERO" system). Action resolution is roll under skill on 3d6, with special target numbers for combat (11 + offense - defense) and pure attribute rolls (9 + attribute / 5). Character creation is an innovative open point system, the first of its kind. A pool of points can be spent on attributes, skills, and on customizable superpowers. The power design metasystem is a complex but highly-regarded piece which can be used for almost any power.
Champions: The New Millenium
1st ed by George MacDonald, Steve Peterson, Ray Greer, Mike Pondsmith (1997) R Talsorian
2nd ed (2000) R Talsorian
A comic-book superhero RPG set in a revised version of the Champions universe, where nearly all of the prior superheroes of the world have been wiped out by a cataclysm, and a new generation of heroes (including the PCs) must replace them. It uses a completely revised set of mechanics, the Fuzion system.
Changeling: The Dreaming
1st ed by Brian Campbell, Jackie Cassada, Richard Dansky, Chris Howard, Steve Kenson, Ian Lemke, Angel Leigh McCoy, Deena McKinney, Neil Mick, Wayne Peacock, Nicky Rea, Michael Rollins (1995) White Wolf
2nd ed by Ian Lemke (1997)
A modern fantasy game about faeries struggling in the modern world. "Banality" of current existance threatens them. It uses a variant of the "Storyteller" system.
Chaos 6010 A.D.
1st ed by Brandon Williams (2008) Arcanum Syndicate
A dark sci-fi RPG, set in a post-apocalyptic future where humans and an ancient alien race (the eldrynn) have formed a theocratic empire that rules using a mix of magic and technology. The game is set shortly after a horde of demons from another dimension (Nacadia) have begun invading through the largest Soul Gate. It uses a step die system where attribute or skill rank is converted on a universal table to a die roll. Rank 10 is 1d6; rank 20 is d8+d6; 30 is d20+2d6; etc. Character creation is class-based.
Chaos on Campus
1st ed by Chris Engle (2005) Hamster Press
A pregenerated scenario book using the minimalist Engle Matrix Game system. The first game has students at Miskatonic University in the 1920's fighting Lovecraftian horrors. It also includes another scenario, "The Grave Yard Shift", about mad scientists, juvenile delinquents and spooky undertakers walking in the graveyard at night? The system has explicit negotiation of arguments and results, but leaves the chances for the negotiated outcomes entirely up to the GM.
Chaos University
1st ed by Jennifer Schoonover (2005) Firewater Productions
A tongue-in-cheek modern-day fantasy RPG, set in an alternate future where in May of 2008 a rift tore opened in Binghamton, New York which returned magic into the world. As part of the rift being tore open, Merlin was freed from his magical bonds. He subsequently came to America and founded "Chaos Univisity" on the site of the rift. It uses a simple system of rolling under attribute on 1d30 (alternately, 3d10 or 5d6). Character creation is by deciding on a clique (Jock, Goth, etc.); plus random-roll attributes (Cunning, Grit, Nimbleness, Appeal, Hocus-Pocus, Lady Luck, and Vitality); and a selection of courses which you are going to take at the University. It includes a detailed magic system, and a simple combat system.
Chi-Chian the Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Chris Adams, Barbara Manui, David Fooden (2003) Aetherco
A science fantasy RPG based on the comics and animated series of the same name, by animation auteur Voltaire. The series is set in a fantastic 31st Century New York City, where giant worms offer a clean form of public transportation, and New Jersey has become an armed and deadly enemy. The series explores the political and spiritual tensions among the City's dwellers: its Japanese elite and their rogue security force, the Patahn Pahrr; sentient insect races like the cultured Cockroaches and the nefarious Caterpillars; and outsiders and freaks like the teddybear scientist Dr. Yoshimoto and the title character Chi-Chian, a half-Japanese girl with an invincible organic suit of armor.
Chilren of the Sun
1st ed by Lewis Pollak, Dan Ross, Jac Grenfell (2002) Misguided Games
A 'dieselpunk' fantasy RPG set on an original world, called "Raevich". The world is full of technology as well as magic. It uses a step-die system, the "Token System", where each of nine attributes (3 physical, 3 mental, and 3 social) have a die type associated with them (d4, d6, or d8). Action resolution varies among three types of tests, roughly the attribute roll plus skill (0 to 10) vs difficulty. There is also a speical mechanic where character has a "token" that can be spent once in each round of combat, either to support another character's action or to interrupt an action.
Chill
1st ed by Gali Sanchez, Garry Spiegle, Mark Acres, Ethan Sharp, Michael Williams (1984) Pacesetter
2nd ed by David Ladyman, Jeff R. Leason, Louis J. Prosperi (1990) Mayfair Games
A generic horror roleplaying game. The PCs are members of a centuries-old organization called S.A.V.E. dedicated to fighting evil, which includes a number of psychics. The monsters are mostly traditional (vampires et al.), which use different powers from a unified set of "Evil Way" disciplines.
1st edition uses a percentile skill-based system, checking degree of success vs difficulty on a universal table. Character creation is random-roll attributes and point-bought skills.
2nd edition uses a completely revised system.
Chimaera Roleplaying Universe
1st ed by Michael D. Murphy, George T. Singley (2008) Mongoose Publishing
A superhero role-playing game set in the universe of a new comics brand of the same name, headed by George Singley. It uses a new percentile skill-based game system. Basic resolution is the 1d100 + stat + modifiers must exceed 100. For opposed rolls, the opponent with the higher stat rolls d100 plus the stat different, while the opponent with the lower stat rolls a flat d100. Character creation is a mix of random-roll and point-bought mechanics. There is a core list of over one hundred powers with general descriptions.
Chivalry and Sorcery
1st ed by Ed Simbalist, Wilf K. Backhaus (1977) FGU
2nd ed (1983)
3rd ed by Ed Simbalist, G.W. Thompson (1996) Highlander Designs
Light ed by Edward E. Simbalist, Wilf K. Backhaus, Steve C. Betney (1999) Brittania
Rebirth ed (2000)
A fantasy-genre role-playing game, based on medieval Europe with the addition of elves, dwarves, etc. The original uses a complex system with skills and level-based advancement, including an involved combat system. The complex magic system mixes fantasy magic like fireballs with authentic alchemy, witchcraft, and enchantment. Mages must spend time enchanting materials and tracking degree of enchantment.
The 3rd edition introduces a unified mechanic (the "Skillscape" system) using 3d10: a percentile roll under skill for success, and a "crit die" determines quality of success/failure. There are min and max chances of success, but skill below min or above max counts by modifying the crit result. The "Light" rules are a simplified version of the 3rd edition rules (in a 40-page booklet).
Chosen
1st ed by Aaron Rosenberg (2001) Clockworks Games
A science fantasy RPG about a far-flung future where the PC's are people imbued with the spiritual powers of the archetypal Beasts -- dragons, gryphons, manticores, etc. -- who fight evil conspiratorial Wizards.
Chronica Feudalis: A Game of Imagined Adventure in Medieval Europe
1st ed by Jeremy Keller (2009) Cellar Games
A historical RPG set in medieval Europe, written in the conceit of being written by a 12th century monk and translated. It uses a simple system created for the game. Character creation is by choosing three mentors, and choosing three Aspects. Each mentor defines a set of skills (from a list of 24 skills) that will increase, while Aspects are player-defined descriptive tags. Each character also starts with 3 Ardor and 3 Vigor. For resolution, each skill has a die rating from 1d4 (unskilled) to 1d12 (master). The player rolls a die for skill along with an optional die for tool and an optional 1d8 for a positive Aspect (which costs 1 Ardor) - or the player may omit one die for a negative Aspect and gain 1 Ardor. Each die over a target number is one success. In combat, characters may either take injuries or lose a point of Vigor.
The Chronicles of Ramlar
1st ed by Tony Lee, Alana Abbott, Benji Blailock, John Prescott, Michael Johnston, Pyran Taylor, Shane Wilson, Wayne Sykes (2006) White Silver Publishing, Inc.
A medieval fantasy RPG, set on the continent of Eranon on a world created by the creator god Ramlar. It is populated by elves, dwarves, halfling, and others. The game uses a percentile skill-based system known as the A/B System, short for Armor/Body as shown by the hit location chart on the character sheet. Resolution is by roll under skill on percentile dice, with level of success being the roll itself. Character creation is class-based with level-based advancement.
Chronicles of Skin
1st ed (2011) Cobweb Games
A storytelling game for 3-5 players intended for play in either 90 minutes or 3 hours depending on mode. Each player has three roles: Artist, Other and Scribe. As Artist, a player draws the events of the story. As Other, a player creates characters for the story and guides them. As Scribe, a player invents locations and sets up the world. Players draw from a custom deck of 72 cards to create flags, which they use to determine traits for two cultures at war.
Class Dismissed!
1st ed by Ashok Desai (2008) Sane Studios
A modern-day tabletop role-playing game where the player characters are high school students, engaged in various trouble and adventures. It includes optional brief rules for magic as well.
Classroom Deathmatch
1st ed by Jake Richmond, Matt Schlotte (2007) Atarashi Games
A modern-day action/horror RPG based on the Japanese film "Battle Royale" where a class of high school students are forced to fight each other to the death for televised entertainment. It uses a dice pool conflict resolution system (using d6, d8, d10, and d12), with special rules for narration -- a variant of the system in Panty Explosion.
Cloak of Steel: Gigantic Metal Warriors Clash in the World of Tierplana
1st ed by James Desborough, Steven Mortimer, Raven Morrison (2004) Postmortem Studios
An electronically-published fantasy RPG, using a variant of the Live System -- intended to be a more free-flowing variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D and D20 Modern. It is set on the original world of Tierplana, a fantasy world with magic-powered giant robots and airships inhabited by humans and human-animal hybrids called Half-Men. Character creation replaces classes with packages of skills and feats.
Code of Unaris: Chat Roleplaying
1st ed by Gary Pratt (2004) Goldleaf Games
A science fantasy roleplaying game designed for play over online chat. The basic game contains rules and background for two fantasy ages -- both set a billion years ago on Earth's own moon, but divided by 5000 years. The Third Age of Unaris is magically rich, when the world is covered in shallow oceans with a medieval culture undergoing renaissance under the eye of a pantheon of gods. The Fourth Age of Unaris is set in the freezing world where the remnants of civilization are backsliding in a giant tower which wards off the cold.
Codex: Story Gaming for Creative People
1st ed by Malcolm Sheppard (2007) Mob United Media
A universal mini-RPG system aimed at text-based games, especially those played by forum or weblog.
The Cog Wars
Zero ed by JL Williams, Dmitri Arbacauskas, Robert Earley-Clark, Levi Kornelsen, Tony Lower-Basch, Stephen Lea Sheppard (2008) Amagi Games
A tongue-in-cheek steampunk fantasy game set in the city of Tiran, a center of science and education in a fantasy world - where mechanical men known as "Cogs" have just begun to appear and even sometimes become self-aware. The player characters are rebels fighting evil geniuses known as Masterminds who are corrupting the city. It uses a highest die d6 dice pool system, where the player rolls a number of dice based on trait (1-3) plus a possible bonus for one character condition and one target/environment condition. This is opposed by another die roll, taking the highest die and moving to the next highest in the case of ties. The higher roll narrates the result of the action. Character creation includes picking one of three Kinds (Kid, Geezer, or Cog); one of three Virtues (Cunning, Daring, or Graceful); and one of five Vocations (Mystic, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, or Scout). Each of these is then tailored by adding a player-defined trait.
Cold City
1st ed by Malcom Craig (2006) Contested Ground Studios
A modern-day horror game about supernatural investigators in Cold War Berlin circa 1950, fighting monsters amidst the national tensions. It uses a contested dice pool system where you roll a number of d10s equal to the most applicable of three attributes: Action, Influence or Reason. You may add one die for an applicable Trait. The side with the highest die wins.
Cold Space
1st ed by Albert Bailey, clash bowley (2005) Flying Mice LLC
A science fiction game set in an alternate history between 1949 and 1989, where anti-gravity and faster-than-light (FTL) technology was been discovered by scientists following World War II. The Cold War between the United States and the Soviets then played out in space as well as on Earth. This uses a version of the percentile skill-based system from the Starcluster RPG. Character creation can be either random-roll or point-bought attributes, and a lifepath mechanic for each year over 10, which generates skills, metaskills, and attribute improvements.
Cold Steel Reign
1st ed by Patrick Ellison (2005) Mad Hermit Games
A Wild Western Fantasy RPG set into an alternate history/reality where the world has been plunged into a dark ages by a comet strike in Northeastern America during the height of the Civil War. The nominal start time is two hundred years later in a Wild West of a transformed world, including demonic mechanical constructs ("Vyl"), a repressive New Roman Church, gunslinging Templars, and more. It uses an original system, the "Fatalist System". It uses roll under skill on percentile dice, or stat + die versus a target number for combat. Character creation uses attributes with a random-roll base plus 100+1d100 of points, random-roll advancement cost per level, selecting one of ten classes, and rolling three random skills based on class. The classes are Bladesman, Gambler, Gunman, Mountain Man, Revivalist, Rifleman, Scout, Shootist, Brave, Gunslinger.
The Collectors: The Burning House
1st ed by Thomas MacKay (2003) Rogue Publishing
A modern-day horror game where the PCs are demonic (but not necessarily evil) beings who perform tasks required for them. It uses a variant of the FUDGE system, and includes an introductory adventure entitled "The Burning House".
Colonial Gothic
1st ed by Richard Iorio, Monica Valenrinelli, Matt McElroy, James Maliszewski (2007) Rogue Games
A supernatural historical horror roleplaying game set during the dawn of the American Revolution. Resolution uses rolling 2d12 under a target number based on stat.
The Colonies
1st ed by Brett M. Bernstein (2002) Politically Incorrect Games
A science-fiction RPG published as a downloadable PDF. It is set on Mars in the year 2099. There are five distant colonies established on other systems from seeding ships launched in 2030 when disaster loomed. The PC's are colonists seeking to reclaim the Earth from aliens who invaded it. It uses a simple rules set of roll under stat on 2d6. The rules include systems for biotech, nanotech, and psionics.
Combat!: A Military Action Game
1st ed by William Andersen (2005) ComStar Media, LLC
A modern military action RPG using a variant of the Action! System from Gold Rush Games. It includes rules for mass combat to handle command of units, ships, or complete armies.
Commando
1st ed by Eric Goldberg, Greg Costikyan, John Butterfield (1979) SPI
A modern military tactical wargame and RPG, set in WWII. It used a complex table-driven percentile system. Combat was action point based.
The Committee for the Exploration of Mysteries
1st ed by Eric J. Boyd (2007) Eric J. Boyd Designs
A storytelling game of exploration inspired by pulp novels and Victorian adventure tales, where play consists of characters recounting to each other about the adventure they have just had. It is designed to be playable with no pre-game preparation, with play resolving in a single evening or continuing over multiple sessions. Players take turns recounting scenes, where you describe how you overcame a hazard chosen by another player who acts as your opposition. You roll dice based on the attribute used and special traits, then you put forward a die and start narrating the scene. After a bit, your opposition gets to add a complication, you put another die forward, and the cycle continues until you meet the hazard's difficulty or run out of time. There is a three minute maximum. You receive varying amounts of Acclaim points depending on how many dice you used in meeting the hazard's difficulty.
The Company
1st ed by Newt Newport (2009) D101 Games
A modern-day military RPG, where the PCs are active military - such as soldier, pilot, or surveillance officer. The core book includes information about Trouble hot spots, terrorist organisations, and competitors to the Company. It uses a modified version of the OpenQuest system by the same author. Two scenarios are included in the core book: "Operation Bluebeard" and "Operation F.I.S.H and C.H.I.P.S".
The Complete Warlock
1st ed (1975) The SPARTAN
1st ed by Robert Cowan, Dave Clark, Kenneth M. Dahl, Nick Smith (1978) Balboa, Inc.
This was a variant of Dungeons & Dragons. It which originally appeared in issue #9 of "The Spartan" simulation gaming journal as an article entitled "Warlock: or How to Play D&D Without Playing D&D". It later appeared as a product from Balboa, Inc. It had two supplements, "Warlock's Tower" in 1979 (with new monsters, new rules for thieves, and many new magic items) and "The Warlock Menagerie" in 1980 (with over 100 new monsters and other new material).
Conan: The Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Paul Tucker, Ian Sturrock (2003) Mongoose Publishing
2nd ed by Ian Sturrock, Gareth Hanrahan (2007) Mongoose Publishing
A fantasy RPG based on the novels by Robert E. Howard. It is set in the "Hyborian Age" -- a mythic time in what will become modern Europe and Northern Africa. Various precursors to early cultures and races are found. This is a complete game using variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D. It adds rules for fate points, reputation, and corruption. PCs start with 3 fate points, gaining 1 per level, which can be used to avert death ("Left for Dead"), added damage ("Mighty Blow"), reduce corruption ("Repentance"), or to impose a plot twist ("Destiny"). Combat is changed by having armor which reduces damage (i.e. DR instead of raise Defense); and special combat maneuvers, which are qualified for by prerequisites of attributes, skills, and/or feats.
Conan: The Role-Playing Game
1st ed by David "Zeb" Cook (1985) TSR
A fantasy RPG based on the novels by Robert E. Howard. It uses a very simple skill-based system aimed at beginners. A d100 roll is cross-referenced with modified skill on a universal table (similar to Marvel Superheroes) to give a color-code result: green(easy) / yellow / orange / red(hard). The boxed set includes a 2-page adventure based on Howard's "Tower of the Elephant" story and a "World of Hyboria" booklet set up in glossary style.
Confederate Rangers
1st ed (1989) SoLar-Way Games
A near-future sci-fi RPG in a future where 13 Southern U.S. states secede after federal corruption becomes intolerable, forming a new Confederacy. The PCs are Confederate Rangers: high-tech lawmen with old-time values.
Conspiracy of Shadows
1st ed by Keith Senkowski (2004) Bob Goat Press
Revised ed (2005)
A mixed fantasy genre game, described as "X-Files meets grim historical fantasy". It is set on a fantasy world, Polian, similar to medieval European history and legend. There is a demonic conspiracy at work, though the details of this are not specified but left partially open for the GM to define. Action resolution uses 2d6 + attribute + skill vs difficulty. You get an extra dice if a positive descriptor comes into play, and one less if a negative descriptor. Character creation is limited point-based, with professions defined as packages of skills.
Conspiracy X
1st ed by Rick Ernst, Shirley Madewell, Chris Pallace (1996) New Millenium
2.0 ed by David F. Chapman (2006) Eden Studios
An alien-conspiracy role-playing game (i.e. X-files), focusing on members of a secret government organization which defends against an alien menace. The system is a simple granular one where skill (1-5) is compared to difficulty (1-5). If skill equals difficulty, roll 7 or less on 2d6. If skill equals (difficulty+1), roll 4 or less. The damage system, on the other hand, is more complicated. cf. the official website.
Contenders: A Role-Playing Game of Blood & Sweat, Pain & Hope
1st ed by Joe J. Prince (2006) Prince of Darkness Games
A GMless role-playing game about professional boxers, focusing on the seedy underbelly of the boxing world and personal struggles. It has a scene resolution mechanic using playing cards similar to Primetime Adventures. Each player takes a turn to define a type of scene for their character, and the scene's conflict is resolved by drawing a number of cards for the character and the opposition. If the player has more red cards, he succeeds in the scene. Whoever has the highest card, though, gets narration rights. The type of scene determines what stats are affected by success or failure. Boxing fights have a further system of selecting strategies for each round. After a character reaches a certain score in his reputation stat, the endgame is reached and players determine if the boxers have achieved their dreams.
Continuum: Role-playing in the Yet
1st ed by Chris Adams, Barbara Manui, David Fooden (1999) Aetherco
A time-travel game where the time-travel machine itself is the human body: just "span" and you're there. There is a community of time-travellers, but the past is essentially inalterable. The skill system is a simple one of roll d10 under skill. A d10 is also useed for all damage and other rolls. Character creation is point-based, distributing 25 points over 3 attributes (Body, Mind, and Quick) and skills, plus ads and disads.
Control
1st ed by Lee Garvin (1997) Reality Cheque Games
A conspiracy-genre RPG focusing on characters not in-the-know learning about the Truth. As part of character advancement, players can to advance to become GM (aka "Controller"). The mechanics are built on having binary qualities, where the number of appropriate qualities you have determines your dice pool, and take best roll (d20's).
Cooperation
1st ed by Charles J. Walther (1998) Cooperation
A sci-fi space-opera RPG, where mankind and five other alien races stand against the Yadeze, giant evil aliens with the requisite space armada. It uses a percentile system with a lot of stats and skills. Character creation has attributes point-bought (from a pool of 250+6d10), and then a lifepath-like acquisition of skills.
Corporation: The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by James Norbury (2006) Core Games Publishing Ltd
Revised ed by James Norbury (2008) Brutal Games
A science fiction RPG set in 2500 A.D. where five monolithic corporations have taken over the globe, which has been badly damage by corporate wars over the centuries. The technology ranges up to biotechnology, AI, plasma weapons, personal teleporters and invisibility shields -- as well as limited telepathy. It centers on enhanced corporate Agents who take on missions for their corporation. It uses an open skill-based system. Action resolution is by roll under attribute + skill on 2d10, where attributes and skills both range from 0 to 10 for normal humans.
CORPS
1st ed by Greg Porter (1990) BTRC
2nd ed (1995)
Originally a modern-day conspiracy genre game, this was expanded in the 2nd edition to be a universal generic system. It uses a basic d10 roll of skill vs difficulty, with free point-bought character creation. The damage system is notable for not having hit points, but instead impairment of body parts (which can be unlimited) combined with bleeding and a chance of instant death.
Correlya
1st ed by Matthew Davenport (2004) self-published
2nd ed (2007)
A fantasy genre game set on an original world of the same name, inhabited by elves (the primordial race) and the various races they created to be their slaves including humans, gnomes, channelers, elamorphs, elapidons, mantids, oakbellies, shellbacks, triclops, and zepherai. There are also three outlier races not created this way: vampires, aeternalifs, and gremlins. It uses a complex system. Skills are divided into three "spheres" -- Mental, Visceral, and Rogue. As you advance in each sphere you gain a variety of special abilities. The basic game includes details on life in Correlya and its features, though no monsters. The second edition is self-published via Lulu.com.
Cortex System Role Playing Game
1st ed by Jamie Chambers (2008) Margaret Weis Productions
A universal system "toolkit" book, based on the step-die mechanic system used in the Sovereign Stone fantasy system, Serenity RPG, Battlestar Galactica RPG. Attributes and skills are rated in a a step die system with twelve ranks: d2, d4, d6, d8, d10, d12, d12+d2, d12+d4, d12+d6, d12+d8, d12+d10, d12+d12. Action resolution is by rolling attribute die plus skill die. Characters have six attributes (Agility, Strength, Vitality, Alertness, Intelligence, Willpower), along with skills and advantages. It also includes a plot point mechanic.
Cosmic Enforcers
1st ed by Mike McCune, Gary Sibley, Jerry Holland, Eric Nikkila (1995) Myrmidon
A sci-fi superhero RPG set in a universe where in 2025AD a galactic alliance finally unites 7 races. A dark force seeks to bring chaos by striking down the alliance, resisted by the superhero "cosmic enforcers". Includes magic, psionics, superpowers, and various ultra-tech.
Cosmic Patrol
1st ed by Matt Heerdt, Randall Bills, Jason Schmetzer (2011) Catalyst Game Labs
A sci-fi storytelling RPG of "Rockets and Rayguns!" set in a future based on the Golden Age of science fiction, inspired by E.E. "Doc" Smith, Harry Harrison, Robert Heinlein, and Philip Francis Nolan along with the radio series including X Minus One and Dimension X. The player characters are Patrolmen of the Cosmic Patrol. It uses a system of rotating GM ("Lead Narrator"). It uses a step-die system, where resolution is by the player rolling 1d12 plus the appropriate attribute die vs. the Lead Narrator's 1d20 roll. Attributes are Brawn, Brains, Charisma, Combat, and Special (defined as the character's specialty). Players may spend Plot Points to modify rolls, regain health points, or add a plot twist.
Courtesans: A roleplaying game of sex and society
1st ed by Ian Warner (2011) Postmortem Studios
A roleplaying game set in Victorian Demi Monde, where the player characters are society prostitutes who compete for money and influence in their circles while sharing a house. Character creation begins by choosing a class-like "origin" - including Actresses, Professionals, Fallen Ladies, Goldenhearts, Schemers and Upstarts. During a session, or season, Courtesans procure admirers, complete actions such as conversation, sex and spying, then attend the Cyprian Ball. The characters collect five categories of experience: Legend, Reputation, Wealth, Influence, and Scandal. It uses a variant of the "Beer and Crisps" mechanics from the Urban Faerie and Tough Justice games, though there is no combat system.
Covenant: a story game of failing conspiracies
1st ed by Matt Machell (2006) Realms Publishing
A modern day conspiracy game about members of a conspiracy whose predicted apocalypse never happened. It uses a narration mechanic where conflicts between characters are resolved by players taking turns describing how positive and negative traits impact the outcome of situations. It also has a mechanic for bringing in recurring motifs and highlighting agreed genre conventions.
Covert Generation
1st ed by Caz Granberg (2006) Hefty Wrenches Game Design
A modern espionage game about child secret agents rebelling against The X, a secret cabal of ex-slackers who now rule the world through coercion and legalistic thuggery. Teen and tween agents collaborate in Cells across the world to fight the man in all his forms. It uses a narration-based dice pool system, with a core pool of three dice with added or subtracted dice for applicable "Core Components" (Core Value, Attributes, Specialty and Cover Identity).
Coyote Trail
1st ed by Brett M. Bernstein (2005) Politically Incorrect Games
An RPG set in the American Old West, an update of an earlier game called "Shady Gulch". It uses a variant of the genreDiversion system also used by HardNova ][. Action resolution is by rolling under attribute + skill on 2d6, with special rules for "Triumph" and "Calamity" criticals. Character creation is limited point-based, spending 10 points on five attributes ranging from 1 to 5 (Fitness, Awareness, Reasoning, Creativity, and Influence); 30 points on broad skills; and selected Gimmicks (i.e. ads and disads). It includes simple rules for chases and combat, with 5 wound levels in 3 types (Injury, Fatigue, Intoxication). The basic game includes a set of Wild West personalities, ready-to-play adventures, story ideas, reference sheets, and numerous character, horse, and wagon templates.
Creation's End: A Religious Horror RPG
1st ed by Michael Holder (2005) Creation's End Management Group Winterwolf Publishing
A modern-day religious horror RPG, inspired by films such as Stigmata, Prophecy, The Seventh Sign, Constantine, and The Exorcism of Emily Rose. Character creation includes a choice of seven bloodlines: fallen angel, darkling, dustform, angyl, prophet, aboreth, and slayrre.
Creeks and Crawdads
1st ed by M. Martin Costa (1986) Crustacium Games
A humorous post-nuclear-apocalypse mini-RPG (24 pages) where the PC's are mutant semi-intelligent crawdads. After nuclear war wipes out all human life, these crawdads attempt to rebuild. However, the crawdads are still quite stupid, and thus require IQ rolls to attempt almost any activity.
The Creep Chronicle
1st ed by Richard Parkinson (2006) Better Mousetrap Games Timeless Games
A horror RPG where the player characters are children trapped alone in a warped version of the modern world where gods and monsters stalk city streets and lurk in farmers' fields.
Crime Fighter
1st ed by Aaron Allston (1988) Task Force Games
A police RPG with simple rules; simulates the sort of campy police story found in TV shows such as "Adam-12". The rules were counters/miniatures oriented, and 104 playing pieces and 12 mapboards were included in the boxed set.
Crimefighters
1st ed by David "Zeb" Cook (1981) TSR
A pulp adventure mini-RPG (23 pages) published in Dragon magazine #47. It uses a simple percentile system. Character creation is random-roll attributes, point-bought binary skills, and a 5% chance of a random special power.
Crime Network: Cosa Nostra
1st ed by Brendan Davis (2010) Bedrock Games
A modern-day crime RPG, where the player characters are mobsters trying to work their way up within the organization. It uses a d10 dice pool system (the "Network System"), rolling dice equal to skill and comparing the highest roll to difficulty or opposing skill. Rolls of 10 are open-ended. Character creation is purely skill-based - there are no attributes.
Crimson Cutlass
1st ed by George Rahm, Joseph Hilmer (1979) Better Games
2nd ed (1989)
A swashbuckling RPG using the "Free-style"/"Quick & Dirty" game system. The 1st edition was published in magazine format, while the 2nd edition as a boxed set of three 5"x8" perfect-bound books. Action resolution uses a homemade Spanish tarot deck included with the boxed set. The system has 4 "traits" (Dashing, Cunning, Stout, and Lordly); four backgrounds (Soldier, Commoner, Aristocrat, and Noble); and various skills based on background (fencer, briber, goldsmith, equestrian, etc.). Books 2 and 3 cover scenario design, including extensive tables of randomized storylines and encounters.
Crimson Empire
1st ed by Chris Loizou (2002) Crimson Empire
2nd ed (2004)
A fantasy-genre RPG set on an original world: the world of Thargos. It is set 150 years after the Crimson Empire was destroyed by the Great Cataclysm. Now the Northern region seeks to rebuild the empire, resisted by the South. The world is inhabited by humans, elves, dwarves, and dergs along with various other creatures such as centaurs, dragons, and various original creatures. It uses a detailed percentile system, with a combat system that strives for realism. It also includes a magic system. Character creation is random-roll attributes, choice of race and class, and modifiers for region, childhood, and inheritance. The second edition was renamed Cursed Empire. It features a "Points of Renown" experience system, where some characters can align themselves with a faction instead of themselves as individuals. Then if their character dies, the player can create a new PC with the same faction at a head start.
Critical!: Go Westerly
1st ed by Geoff Bottone, Jonathan Lavallee (2012) Firestorm Ink
A humorous fantasy RPG about adventurers fighting monsters and collecting treasure. The GM is called the Bartender, and all characters have an Alcohol Content (or "AC") score. Character creation is point-buy, with player-generated skills such as "Been Raising Pigs Forever" or "Shred on the Theorbo (or Other Stringed Instrument)". Skills are divided into four categories: Help You, Help Others, Hurt Others, and Cheating. Resolution is by rolling 2d6 under a success number from your stat and difficulty (or opponent's stat). A roll of exactly the success number is critical, which includes success along with both something good and something bad extra.
Critter Commandos
2000 ed by Paul Arden Lidberg (2000) Crunchy Frog
A humorous miniatures combat game where the combatants are modeled after Saturday morning cartoon characters, and that the damage caused by the weapons isn't really real. The "2000" edition includes role-playing rules including 10 pages of mechanics and 35 pages of background.
Cthulhu Dark Ages
1st ed by Stephane Gesbert (2004) Chaosium
A variant of the classic Call of Cthulhu horror RPG set in Europe around 1000 A.D. Rather than randomly rolling for attributes, players allocate 100 points combined to the eight attributes.
Cthulhu Live
1st ed by Robert McLaughlin, Dan DePalma, Scott Nicholson, Cyndy Schneider (1997) Chaosium
2nd ed (1999) Fantasy Flight Games
3rd ed by Robert McLaughlin (2006) Skirmisher Publishing
Live-action role-playing rules for Call of Cthulhu, intended mainly for large groups and/or convention events.
Cthulhutech
1st ed by Matthew Grau, Fraser McKay (2008) Wildfire LLC Catalyst Game Labs
A storytelling game that mixes the genres of cosmic horror (such as H.P. Lovecraft) and giant mecha Japanese animation. It is set in the year 2085, when the world is emboiled in the Aeon Wars fighting alien horrors and three-quarters of the world's population has been wiped out. Resolution uses a dice pool system where you roll a number of d10s equal to attribute plus skill, and take the sum of the highest matching set or straight (i.e. rolling a pair of sixes gives total 12, or a sequence of 4-5-6 gives total 15). The system also uses drama points, which can raise or lower any dice pool by one die per point spent. Character creation is limited point-based.
Cursed Empire
2nd ed by Chris Loizou (2004) Spartans Unleashed
This is the renamed second edition of the fantasy genre RPG, Crimson Empire.
Cutthroat Roleplaying
1st ed by Nathan Kaylor, Eric Goldberg (1988) StormWorld Games
A dark fantasy RPG where characters are thieves in the medieval city of Skaev. The world is immersed in chaos, as the peaceful 75-year reign of Emperor Ghalish has come to an end. A skill-based resolution system using d20's.
Cybergeneration
1st ed by Mike Pondsmith et al. (1993) R Talsorian
2nd ed (1995)
A post-cyberpunk futuristic game featuring nano-technology and an anime-style feel, with super-powered "cyber-evolved" and a mix of grim reality and light-hearted adventure.
CyberGladiators
1st ed by David L. Pulver, Marc A. Vezina, Scott Bennie, Patrick Sweeney (2004) Firefly Games
A duelling game, not really role-playing per se, about gladiatorial combat between cyborg combatants in the far future. It uses a scaled back version of the Action! System from Gold Rush Games. There are four races: humans, Tuara (a lizard-like race of primitives), Kisa (a bipedal cat-like race), and the Crigg (a primitive insect-like species with deadly mandibles and natural armor). Character creation is limited point-based and includes various cybernetic options.
Cyberpunk
1st ed by Mike Pondsmith et al. (1988) R Talsorian
2020 ed (1990)
A cyberpunk role-playing game, focusing on paramilitary violence and netrunning. It uses a simple attribute+skill+1d10 roll system (the "Interlock" system).
Cyberspace
1st ed by Tod Foley, Terry K. Amthor, LaDell, Kevin Barrett, S. Coleman Charlton (1989) Iron Crown Enterprises
A cyberpunk RPG set in 2090 in the San Francisco Sprawl. It focuses on netrunning, and on personal biotech enhancements which are very common. The classes include Jockey (generalist), Killer (combat), Net Junkie (computer), Sleaze (social skills), Sneak (subterfuge), and Tech Rat (technical). It uses a slightly streamlined variant of the Space Master system (but not as simplified as Middle Earth).
Cyborg Commando
1st ed by Gary Gygax, Kim Mohan, Larry Mentzner (1987) New Infinities
A sci-fi RPG, playing cyborgs soldiers fighting an alien invasion of Earth by Xenoborgs in 2035. It included background on both the cyborgs defenders as well as the invading aliens (biology, society, and culture). The system used a roll of 1d10 times 1d10 for an odd probability curve that is referenced on a universal chart. The system had a handful of supplements, including "Film at Eleven" (by Guy McLimore, Greg Poehlein, and David Tepool).
Cycle of Existence
1st ed by Christopher Ashe (2006) Broken Doll Studios
A modern fantasy/horror RPG, set in the modern world with creatures and magic inspired by Japanese anime. The PCs are part of a secret war of Light against the forces of Balance and Darkness. There are four races: humans (known as the Lirie-Kana or "People of the Struggle"); the childlike and graceful Asana-Lea (known as Eternal Children); the man-like rats called the Oraki known for their craftsmanship and love of adventure; and the elf-like Silana (the People of the Ether). It uses an original percentile skill-based system, called the seven13 game engine. Each action is given a rank from 1 to 7, which corresponds to a chance of 13% times the rank (13% to 7x13=91%).
D20 Modern
1st ed by Bill Slavicsek, Jeff Grubb, Rich Redman, Charles Ryan (2002) Wizards of the Coast
A generic modern-day fantasy RPG. There is no canonical setting, but three brief sample settings are included in the core rulebook: "Shadow Chasers" (secret monster-hunters), "Agents of PSI" (secret agents with psychic powers), and "Urban Arcana" (D&D advanced to a modern age). The rules are a standalone system based on the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D. The classes are redone, with a generic set of six classes for beginning characters: Strong Hero, Fast Hero, Tough Hero, Smart Hero, Dedicated Hero, and Charismatic Hero. Also, there are abstract wealth rules, additional rules for firearms, and altered nonlethal damage. There is an expansion supplement called "D20 Future" which covers science fiction settings.
d4-d4 roleplaying game system
1st ed by Kyle Schuant (2004) Better Mousetrap Games Goshu Otaku
A generic role-playing system, described as best for modern or future campaigns, of relatively short duration. (Longer campaigns may result in the characters becoming too proficient.) Action resolution is a die roll of two four-sided dice, the one subtracted from the other and added to a Trait, and compared to a Difficulty level. Traits are rated with a 11-step descriptive scale such as "Djim is an Outstanding Cook," or "Jane is a Middling Swimmer". This is similar to the 7-step scale in Fudge. Character creation is point-based, speding 20 levels (or variable depending on power level) on your character's traits. You may take up to 5 levels of "Bad Stuff" (standard disadvantages), gaining you that many extra levels to spend on other abilities.
The D6 System
1st ed by George Strayton (1996) West End Games
A universal RPG system based on the system used in WEG's Ghostbusters and further developed in WEG's Star Wars. The universal D6 system book was published much later as an alternative to WEG's less popular MasterBook universal system. The universal system adds advantages and disadvantages to the point-based character creation.
Daemornia
1st ed by Michael Lirko (2005) Better Mousetrap Games Daemornia Games
A post-apocalyptic science fantasy game, set in a future where demonic forces invaded Earth but were beaten back with the help of strange new races. Now the Earth is under seige, with guarded "techno-communities" while most learn melee weapons, magic, or psionics. It includes a system with 7 character races, 16 different career paths, magic and psionics, and a collection of demons and monsters.
Dallas
1st ed by James F. Dunnigan (1980) SPI
A card-game / RPG based on the TV soap opera. The boxed set includes cut-apart cards for major characters from the series, along with a 16-page rulebook, 16-page book of characters, and a 16-page "Scriptwriter's Guide". Character attributes include power, persuasion, coercion, seduction, investigation, and luck.
The Dance and the Dawn
1st ed by Dev Purkayastha (2009) FGJ Games
A fairy tale romance game for 3-5 players, with its own setting centered on the imagery of chess. The player characters are all Ladies at the Ice Queen's court in search of their One True Love among several Lords, and each Lady is represented by a chess piece with associated traits. The Narrator controls the Queen, Duke, and Lords. Play is divided into three dances, with duels as potential interludes between the dances. During each dance, the Ladies move with their partner around the board and exchange questions to gain the Lord's favor and understand their past. At the end of the game (in 1-2 hours real time), each Lady must pick a Lord and find if it is their One True Love.
Dance of the Damned: A storytelling game of Decadence and Despair
1st ed by Andrew Peregrine (2010) Corone Design
A GMless storytelling game based on "The Masque of the Red Death" by Edgar Allan Poe, designed to play in a session of around one hour. It uses standard deck of playing cards, and each player tries to force cards from their hand onto the other players. The characters are trapped together in a castle, engaging in wine and vice to mask the fear and paranoia they are feeling. The suits of the cards guides how scenes play out, and these scenes build the story of the castle. There is no official winner of the game, but victory could be implied if one of the players manages to steer the events to a fate they wanted.
Danger, International
1st ed by L. Douglas Garrett, George MacDonald, Steve Peterson (1985) Hero Games
A modern espionage/action RPG, using the 3rd edition Champions system. This is the retitled 2nd edition of Espionage. It does not include any of the powers rules, and instead has information covering a host of modern action genres: from crimefighting to post-apocalypse and alien invaders. It introduced vehicle chase combat rules and specific martial arts rules, later adopted into 4th edition Champions.
Dangerous Journeys
1st ed by Gary Gygax, Dave Newton (1992) GDW
A three-volume fantasy-genre RPG ("Mythus", "Mythus Magick", "Epic of AErth"). It uses a skill-based system. Character creation has random-roll attributes, and skills determined either by picking a "vocation", or by creating your own vocation. There are 18 attributes: 3 categories (Physical/ Mental/ Spiritual), each with 2 subcategories (Muscular+Neural/ Mnemonic+Reasoning/ Metaphysical+Psychic). Each subcategory has attributes for capacity, power, and speed: each determined by 2d6+8. There were three additional books published over the next year: "Necropolis", "Mythus Bestiary", and "Mythus Prime", plus two magazines (Journeys and Mythic Masters Magazine). After that the game disappeared over legal dispute with TSR (cf. the GDW entry for details). cf. the official website
Danger Quest: Pulp Adventures in the 24th Century
1st ed by Dave Matalon, Andy Mello (2002) Torchlight Games
A pulp science-fiction RPG, set in the 2330's where a long-standing anti-technology trend has resulted in old-style appearing gadgets such as flying cars. The game centers on Newmerica, which is threatened by a Nazi-like empire in Europe and others.
Daredevils
1st ed by Bob Charrette, Paul Hume (1982) FGU
A pulp-era action and mystery game. It uses a variant of the Aftermath system, with simplified combat and the complex elements made optional. Character creation is skill-based and point-bought. It includes a detailed skill list, source material on the 30's, and a section on special powers (a la "The Shadow").
Dark Conspiracy
1st ed by Lester W. Smith (1991) GDW
2nd ed (1998) Dynasty
A near-future horror role-playing game, in a future where environmental devastation, urban sprawl, and corporate greed are worsened by little-known supernatural alien horrors that have taken over swaths of land known as "demonground". The system is a skill-based (a variant of the GDW house system), using d10 (1st edition) or d20 (2nd edition).
Dark Continent: Adventure & Exploration in Darkest Africa
1st ed by David Salisbury, Mandy Smith (2001) New Breed Games
A historical roleplaying game of Victorian era adventure within Africa, inspired by the work of Burton and Livingstone. The boxed set included two paperback books: the 112-page Player's Guide and the 144-page GM's Guide. There are also two A5 booklets (5.75 x 8.25"): a Victorian traveller's guide to exotic Zanzibar (A Gazeteer of Zanzibar) and a catalog of the fictional Topan Trading Company (Catalog of Goods). The set also included two A3 (11 x 17") player maps of Maasailand and of Abyssinia. It uses a simple skill-based system, with action resolution by rolling under character's skill on 1d10. There are details on long-term movement, outfitting, mass combat, and morale. An expedition has stats derived from its collective membership which are used to resolve large-scale tasks.
The Dark Fantasy of Sundrah
1st ed by T. Glenn Bane (2007) Scaldcrow Games
A fantasy RPG set in an original world, Sundrah, ruled by evil gods resisted by human rebels -- along with other races including angels, dwarves, goblins, gremlins, hobgoblins and trolls. Player characters may also include a sorcerous hybrid of human and any animal, designed by the player. Character creation involves choice from 23 professions including hoplite and galloglaich.
Dark Nova Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Breandán Ó Ciarraí, Orren Fansler, Martin Fox (2012) Dark Nova Games
A science fiction RPG set in the early 24th century, centered on a loose collection of nation-states called the Terran Alliance of Nations - populated by humans along with dozens of aliens who have discovered FTL (including 9 suitable as player characters). Threats include pirates, organized crime, hostile aliens, as well as internecine warfare. Character creation includes 9 attributes under the three broad groups of Physical, Mental, and Social. There are five broad categories of profession (academic, socialite, combat arms, adventurer, tech), with 6 classes in each. Action resolution includes skill checks based on rolling 3d10 under skill as well as combat based on rolling over a target number (based on class) on 1d20. Advancement is by level.
Darkpages
Ashcan ed by Jared Sorensen, Jason Roberts (2008) Memento Mori Theatricks
A game inspired by horror and crime comics - with amoral anti-heroes and stories of sex, violence, pain, tragedy, betrayal, and rare redemption. Character creation includes choosing one of nine Concepts: Vigilante, Vampire, Outsider, Ghost, Freak, Elemental, Construct, Beast, or Adept.
Dark Realms
1st ed by Ryan S. Johnson, John L. Ross (1997) Guild of Blades
2nd ed (2004) Guild of Blades
A generic fantasy RPG system. The first edition was printed as a 96-page digest-sized book. It uses a universal results table, crossing skill minus (difficulty or opposing skill) with a 1d12 roll for a degree of success. Character creation is class-based, with ten classes including archer, woodsman, and knight, as well as warrior, wizard, and rogue. Advancement is level-based, with randomized skill points for each skill slot gained.
Darksword Adventures
1st ed by Margaret Weis, Tracy Hickman (1988) Bantam/Spectra
A fantasy RPG set in the world of Weis' and Hickman's Darksword novels, sold in trade paperback format following the novels. It uses a simple system ("Phantasia") with only five stats: Combat, Prowess, Information, Shape, and Life. It uses "paper-rock-scissor" to resolve conflicts.
DarkTown: The Apocolyptic Cycle
1st ed by Roger McReynolds, Ben Reading (1998) Propaganda Publishing Gold Rush Games
A science-fantasy RPG set in a future on the verge of cataclysm, as science begins to falter and rumors of mystical and mythical occurences come about. The "apocalyptic cycle" are Science, Religion, and Magic which are in conflict.
DarkUrthe LEGENDS
1st ed by Colin Murcray, Matt Yarrow (1993) Black Dragon Press
A "dark" fantasy role-playing game, set on an original world. Character creation is class-based, including race-specific classes, guild-associated classes, and generic classes. It includes a magic system of designing spells from various defind components. A 2nd edition is planned under the title "Myth & Legend".
Darkus Thel
1st ed by Donald C. Moehlenkamp, Kurt Moehlenkamp, James August Mohow (1986) Sorcerers Guild
Book Two ed (1994)
Book Two ed (1986)
A fantasy genre mini-RPG, with an original world background along with monsters such as dragon-equivalents called "drakens" and "sabercats". The system is based solely upon D6 dice.
Darkwood
1st ed by Steve Garnett (2001) Tower Games
A fantasy role-playing game set near Sherwood Forest of the Robin Hood legends. The system uses roll under attribute + skill on 1d20. Character creation is limited point-based.
Dawg: the RPG
1st ed by Ashok Desai (2009) Kenzer & Company
A humorous mini-RPG about playing dogs. It uses simple roll-over percentile system for most resolution. Characters are defined by six attributes: Brawn, Hustle, Dodge, Alertness, Human Handling, and Animal Magnetism. Character creation involves choosing your breed of your dog and lifestyle - with strays having greater street skills, but being less healthy than pets. Characters also have various special abilities ("Tricks"). This was originally published in the comic book Knights of the Dinner Table #150, and later released electronically on its own.
Dawnfire
1st ed by Jason Marin (2000) Committed Comics
A fantasy genre RPG set on an original world. Each PC uses magic from a type of "Flow" -- magical energy that radiates from the three suns above Dawnfire. The three flow types are Warrior, Shaper, and Rogue. Races include humans, Garin (fox-creatures), Dracos (half-dragons), winged Aerials, Trolls, Makir, and Minotaurs. It uses a skill-based system with 10 attributes. Action resolution is by rolling under stat on 1d20, where 20 is a critical failure and 1 is a critical success.
Dawn Patrol
1st ed by Mike Carr et al. (1982) TSR
A WWI air combat game and RPG, a version of the boardgame Fight in the Skies with expanded rules giving more emphasis on the pilots as characters. cf. the semi-official website.
DC Heroes
1st ed by Greg Gorden, Sam Lewis (1985) Mayfair
2nd ed by Ray Winninger, Thomas Cook, Dan Greenberg (1989)
3rd ed by Bryan Nystul (1993)
A superhero RPG set in the DC comics universe. This uses a unique system (later dubbed "MEGS" for "Mayfair Exponential Gaming System") intended to handle attributes ranging from Robin (2) to Superman (50) on the same scale. Resolution is by rolling stat+2d10 versus 2d10 + difficulty modifier. cf. Josh's DC Heroes FAQ.
DC Universe Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Fred Jandt, Nikola Vrtis (1999) West End Games
Another superhero RPG set in the DC comics universe. It uses a variant of the "D6 Prime" system (from Hercules & Xena. It is a dice pool system rolling d6's where 3-6 is a success (special dice are provided with red and blue faces for this) plus a special "wild die". Character creation is point-based.
deadEarth
1st ed by J.T. Smith, Chris Hagness, Michael Helfman (1999) Anarchy inK
A post-nuclear-apocalypse survival RPG, published electronically. It uses a d6 dice-pool system with random-roll character creation including a vast selection of hundreds of mutations.
Dead Inside: The Roleplaying Game of Loss & Redemption
1st ed by Chad Underkoffler (2004) Atomic Sock Monkey Press
A horror RPG set in the modern world alongside a fantasy setting, the Spirit World. The PCs by default are "Dead Inside" humans who have lost part of their souls, though there are also options to play Ghosts, Magi, Sensitives, or Zombies. They collect soul points for spiritual cultivation, for acting good in various ways, following Virtues and overcoming Vices. It uses a simple system called Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) system. Character creation is by choosing a type, 2 to 4 keywords which give bonuses, and a weakness. Action resolution is by 2d6 + bonus vs difficulty.
Deadlands: The Weird West
1st ed by Shane Lacy Hensley (1996) Pinnacle
A western fantasy-horror game, set in an alternate history where magic and monsters begin appearing around the time of the Civil War. The system is a skill-based dice-pool system, where attribute determines die type (d4,d6,d8,d10,d12,d20) and skill determines number of dice.
Deadlands: Hell on Earth
1st ed by Shane Hensley (1998) Pinnacle
A post-apocalyptic fantasy-horror RPG, set in the year 2094 in a possible future of the Deadlands universe. In 2081, the Reckoners (masters of the evil manitou spirits) break through into the world. It uses a variant of the Deadlands system. New character types are psionic "Sykers", mutant "Doomsayers", magic warrior "Templars", and mad-scientist "Junkers".
Deadlands: Lost Colony
1st ed by John R. Hopler (2002) Pinnacle
A sci-fi/fantasy/horror RPG, set in a distant star system in a possible future of the Deadlands universe. Thirteen years ago, the colony, known as "Faraway", was cut off from Earth by the Last War. Now three million humans are trapped on this world alongside ten times that many angry aliens. It uses a variant of the Deadlands system.
Dead Night of Space: Psibertroopers
1st ed by Ron Fricke, Scott Palter (2003) Final Sword
A space opera RPG, set in a future where a group of psychics (known as "Psibers") sought a better life in space. They were captured to serve as hosts for a dying alien race called the Cey. The Psibers were able to thwart the Cey's plans and in the process take over their planet and all of the Cey's technology, including giant robots and ships with wormhole-like technology. Now they are increasingly in contact with their ancestors, the humans, as well as other species. The PCs are on the front line of these scenarios as the "Psibertroopers". It uses the D6 System originally developed by West End Games, with the addition of the "Chesspiece Goon System" which simplifies handling of minor NPCs by eliminating die rolls.
Dead of Night
1st ed by Merwin Shanmugasundaram, Andrew Kenrick (2005) Steampower Publishing
2nd ed (2010)
A horror movie role-playing game published in a small, "pocket" format for ease of pick-up games. It is based on classic horror movies (vampires, zombies, werewolves, and the like), and nominally set in the generic American town of Chaddlestone. It uses a very simple system, with options for playing the victims or monsters, as well as for distributed game-mastering. Resolution is by rolling 2d10 versus a target of 15 (for standard rolls) or 10 + opponent's stat (for contests). Characters are defined by four stat pairs: Identify/Obscure, Persuade/Dissuade, Pursue/Escape, and Assault/Protect. There are no separate skills, but a stat may be specialized in an openly-defined manner. Characters also have Survival Points, which function both as damage and hero points. Each failed combat roll costs one point. Survival Points can also be spent for different effects: to reroll, gain initiative, flip a stat pair, find a clue, or cancel another Survival Point expenditure. Characters begin with around five, and more are earned for rolling doubles (or rolling 13 for monsters), advancing the plot, cool descriptions of your actions, resting for a full scene, and by acting out horror movie cliches. Character creation is limited point-based.
Dead Reign: Zombie Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Josh Hilden, Joshua Sanford, Kevin Siembieda (2008) Palladium Books
A zombie horror role-playing game, using a variant of the Palladium System. The game includes six character classes (O.C.C.s), including the Reaper, Shepherd of the Damned, Hound Master, Apocalyptic Soldier, Scrounger, and Ordinary People. There are seven types of zombies plus the Half-Living described as opponents.
Deathstalkers: The Fantasy Horror Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Mike Whitehead (2001) Cutter's Guild
2nd ed by Mike Whitehead, Joe Meyers (2003)
A fantasy horror RPG set on an original fantasy world, inhabited by 18 races including the typical dwarf, elf, and gnome plus others including lizard-man, minotaur, half-dragons, half-dead, and half-cat. Action resolution is percentile skills and stat + 1d20 for combat. Character creation involves choosing a racial archetype and a character class (out of 32), along with point-bought skills. The racial archetype gives special abilities, languages, class restrictions, and the basic number of d6's to roll for each attribute. The ten attributes are Knowledge, Mental Tolerance, Leadership, Courage, Strength, Endurance, Beauty, Agility, Speed, and Hit-Points. Advancement is level-based.
Decartha Prime: Science Fantasy in a Shifting World
1st ed by (2000) Hubris
A storytelling game.
Deeds Not Words
1st ed by Scott Lynch (2002) Cryptosnark games
A superhero RPG using a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D.
Deepsleep
1st ed by William Levy (1988) Godiva Productions
A post-nuclear-apocalypse RPG where players play themselves as visitors to a secret government research installation when World War III breaks out. The players then place themselves in suspended animation and wake up in some bizarre setting of the GM's choice. (Rule system unknown)
Deliria
1st ed by Phil Brucato (2003) Laughing Pan Productions
A modern fantasy about mortals in the modern world who interact with the faerie domain. Action resolution uses stat + random modifier vs difficulty -- using either cards or dice to allow for live-action play. It includes a faerie magic system, and extensive rules for social and spiritual conflict.
Delta Force
1st ed by William H. Keith, Jr. (1986) Task Force Games
A modern military/espionage RPG about elite anti-terrorist units, including U.S. Delta Force, British SAS, etc. The system includes lots of detailed weapon statistics. It includes 3 hostage adventures.
Demon City Shinjuku RPG
1st ed by David L. Pulver (1999) Guardians of Order
A supernatural action/horror RPG based on the Japanese animated movie, where in the near future the heart of Tokyo is transformed by the tyrannical Levih Rah into a "Demon City". The game uses the "Tri-Stat" system introduced in Big Eyes, Small Mouth.
Demon Hunters Role Playing Game
1st ed by Jamie Chambers, Brian Clements, Jimmy McMichael (2008) Dead Gentlemen Productions Margaret Weis Productions
A modern-day horror RPG based on the cult film of the same name. The player characters are members of a holy organization of warriors fighting to prevent Hell on Earth, known as the Brotherhood of the Celestial Torch or simply "Demon Hunters." It uses a variant of the "Cortex" system originally developed for the Sovereign Stone RPG. The game includes a copy of the 30 minute cult film on DVD.
Demons and Saints
1st ed by Michael Holder (2015) Darklore Publishing
A dark fantasy RPG set in the modern world where fallen angels battle to control prophecy. It has its own system, where character creation uses random-roll and selecting from categories to generate bloodline (race), morality, weapons, skills, spells, and equipment. Action resolution uses attribute + skill + 1d20 vs. target modifier.
Demon's Lair
1st ed by Dan Hensel, Al Seeger, Dave Schmitz, Gino Holland (1997) Lasalion
A medieval fantasy RPG, set in the world of "Terrania" with 6 continents each with a tower at the center. It is inhabited humans, elves, and dwarves as well as other races such as dakhans. It uses a step-die system. Character creation has classes (fighter/thief/mage/cleric/...) and skills, and a mix of random-rolls and point-bought stats.
Demon: The Fallen
1st ed by Carl Bowen (2002) White Wolf
A modern-day horror RPG, where the PCs are demonic spirits who have been incarnated in human bodies within the "World of Darkness" setting of Vampire: The Masquerade and other games. The demons are partly sympathetic in that they fought against God to empower humanity. Being trapped in the pit for thousands of years, they are now alien and only understand the world through the human part that they inhabit. It uses a version of the Storyteller dice pool system used by the other World of Darkness games.
De Profundis
1st [Polish] ed by Michal Oracz (2001) Portal
1st [English] ed by Michal Oracz (2002) Hogshead Games
A modern-day horror RPG designed for play over mail. Originally published in Polish, and translated into English. The players write in-character letters to each other, describing their progressive exploration of (or victimization by) eldritch nightmare forces. There is no GM; it's up to the players to interlink their stories. It also suggests the option of "field psychodrama" -- where the players use elements from their real life in the stories.
The Deryni Adventure Game
1st ed by Aaron Rosenberg, Ann Dupuis, Jennifer Brinn (2005) Grey Ghost Press
A fantasy RPG based on the popular "Deryni" series of fantasy books by Katherine Kurtz, about a race of humans in medieval times with the gift of magic -- the Deryni. The system is a modified version of the Fudge system.
Desolation: A Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Jamie Gooch, Stephen Herron, Matt Somers (2008) Greymalkin Designs LLC
A post-apocalyptic fantasy RPG, set on the high fantasy world of Scondera 18 months after a cataclysm nearly destroyed it. The Night of Fire killed 90% of the population of Scondera as fire rained down, the ground split, the oceans rose, mythical beasts awoke, and magic lashed out. Whole regions have been changed magically and geographically, locations have been picked up and placed elsewhere, creatures have been twisted, and the whole fabric of civilisation broken. The game uses a variant of the "Ubiquity system" also used by Hollow Earth Expedition.
Desperados
1st ed by Dave Schacter (1991) Skycastle Games
A western genre RPG, using a skill-based percentile system.
Diana: Warrior Princess
1st ed by Marcus L. Rowland (2003) Heliograph, Inc.
A curious, and humorous, modern fantasy game. It is set in the present as re-imagined thousands of years from now -- in a manner parallel to how "Xena: Warrior Princess" treats ancient Greek myth and culture. So it is a romanticized fantasy of our present, which conflates and confuses all sorts of information about our present. Thus it centers on the mighty heroine Diana (recently divorced from Bonnie Prince Charlie) and her sidekick Fergie running about, thwarting the machinations of the evil Queen Elizabeth, as well as those of the dark god of war, Landmines.
Diaspora: hard science-fiction role-playing with fate
1st ed by B. Murray, C.W. Marshall, T. Dyke, B. Kerr (2009) VSCA Publishing
A hard science fiction RPG, in a loose setting where groups of star systems are connected by wormholes called Slipstreams, which starships can jump between through use of a Slipstream Drive. It uses a variant of the FATE system (Fantastic Adventures in Tabletop Entertainment) from Spirit of the Century, including simplified stunts as well as extended star system generation rules.
Dice & Glory
1st ed by Robert A. Neri Jr (2007) Ranger Games
A generic rule system focused on fantasy. Action resolution uses 1d20 + skill versus difficulty. Character creation uses random-roll of attributes, choice of class, and point-bought skills. The generic classes are: Brick, Fighter, Adventurer, Rogue, Mage, Psychic and Clergy.
Digital Burn
1st ed by T.R.Williams, Joe Chan, Ryan Kelley, Sean Kelley, Toby Leonard, Gary McBride, Jason Middleton, Austin Mills, Patrick Quarles, Aaron Robb, Brian Spencer, Tico, Mike Williams (2002) Living Room Games
A cyberpunk game, intended as a setting and general cyberpunk sourcebook for use with the D20 Modern system. It is set in a near future (circa 2017) where a series of natural and man-made disasters between 2008 and 2012 killed off about 30% of the world population in a period commonly known as "The Burn". Deaths include disasters involving genetically modified crops as well as a new lethal sexually transmitted disease dubbed "Black Molly". Genetic engineering is now widely banned and replaced by cybernetics. The rules include nine advanced classes as well as new rules for cyberware, netrunning, and other advanced technology. The advanced classes are Blank (i.e. anonymous but connected street-dweller), Cop, Fixer, Ganger, Hacker, Icon (i.e. celebrity), Medico, Merc, and Spanner (general technician, esp. electronics).
Dime Heroes
1st ed by Todd Downing (1999) Deep7
A very simple 1930's pulp action mini-RPG published in electronic PDF format. It uses a version of the "1PG" system, which (as its name implies) fits on a single page. Resolution is rolling 1d6 and getting under attribute or skill, where 1 is always success and 6 is always failure. Character creation includes rolling 1d3 to determine attributes (Moxie, Glitz, Cunning, and Grey Matter), then spending 1d6 points your skills, with no skill higher than 3. The basic game is 11 pages, and has a 15 page "Jungle Adventures" supplement.
Dinky Dungeons
1st ed by Denton R. Elliot (1985) Doc's Games
A fantasy-genre mini-RPG published in a 3''x5'' ziplock bag(!). It has 2 attributes (Physical and Mental) which are randomly determined, and 3 classes (Fighter, Wizard, Bard). All rolls are on 2d6. Combat is by comparing Physical of attacker and defender on a chart. Other rolls (Muscle or Idea rolls) are all the same chance of success, but higher attribute lets you try more rolls per day. There are no skills per se. cf. Steffan O'Sullivans Dinky Dungeons page.
Dirty Secrets: a game about crime
1st ed by Seth Ben-Ezra (2007) Dark Omen Games
A game based on the film noir crime genre, with narrative control mechanics where one participant plays the main character, and the other players take turns as the primary game-master. When not being primary GM, they act as advisors with veto power over the primary. The conflict resolution system is a slightly modified version of the Liar's Dice game, where everyone rolls a number of dice secretly and take turns bidding higher numbers for a total. There is a "crime grid" where suspects are included, and the guilty party is determined semi-randomly among the suspects.
A Dirty World
1st ed by Greg Stolze (2008) Schroedinger's Cat Press
A film noir RPG, using a variant of the "One-Roll Engine" from Godlike and Reign. Characters are defined by pairs of opposed stats, where your rating in one stat limits your rating in the other. Characters have three pairs of attributes (called "Identities"), and each pair has two pairs of skills (called "Qualities"). Patience/Cunning has Qualities Generosity/Selfishness and Demonstration/Observation. Vigor/Grace has Qualities Courage/Wrath and Endurance/Defiance. Understanding/Persuasion has Qualities Purity/Corruption and Honesty/Deceit. ORE Noir does not use hit locations like other ORE systems, but instead has a more general damage that can be used for both physical and social conflicts.
Discordia!: A Little Game About a Lot of Chaos
1st ed by John Wick (2005) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A modern-day conspiracy RPG, where players take the roles of Discordian double agents infiltrating the world's greatest conspiracies. It uses a dice pool system where you find "fives" in the die roll. It also includes a system of "dogma" (the power your Illuminati grant you) and "catma" (your degree of Discord) that determines what magic powers your conspirator has. Characters have freeform stats reminiscent of Robin Law's Over the Edge. Every time a character uses a "dogma" power, she runs the risk of flipping to the dread Triple Agent status. The game includes a number of scenario ideas, with a nod to Robin Laws' "Cut-Up" story mechanism using randomly drawn words on slips of paper.
Doctor Who: Adventures in Time and Space, The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by David F. Chapman (2009) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited
A time-and-dimension travelling sci-fi RPG based on the TV series. It uses a simple original system, the "Vortex System". Resolution is by adding attribute + skill + 2d6 versus difficulty - possibly modified by spending Story Points. The system emphasizes talking and strategy over pure violence. Talking always happens first in a round before attacks, and a character loses all Story Points if they kill. Combat damage subtracts directly from attributes. Character creation is point-based, setting 6 attributes (Awareness, Coordination, Ingenuity, Presence, Resolve, and Strength) along with 12 skills and various traits (Good, Bad, and Special). Players must spend from their Story Point total for certain traits such as "alien" or "immortal." The core game is a boxed set including two full-color bound manuals, character sheets for pre-made characters as well as blanks, a counter sheet for Story Points, a set of 6 six-sided dice, a booklet with two introductory adventures, and a number of gadget cards.
Doctor Who RPG
1st ed by Michael Bledsoe, Wm John Wheeler, L. Ross Babcock, Guy W. McLimore (1985) FASA
A time-and-dimension travelling sci-fi RPG based on the TV series. PC' are from the Gallifreyan Celestial Intervention Agency, usually a Time Lord/Lady and some humans travelling around in a TARDIS. The system is related to FASA's Star Trek. Actions are resolved using 2d6 on and "interaction matrix". Attributes and skills both range from 1-7 (written as roman numerals), with point-bought character generation.
Dog Eat Dog
1st ed by Liam Burke (2012) Liwanag Press
A partly GMless story game that revolves around colonialism and its consequence. One player plays the Colonizers and has special control over the narrative. The other players play Natives. Action within a scene is resolved by die roll to determine the narrator, but the Colonizer player can overrule this. Each Native player starts with three tokens, and the Colonizer player has two tokens for each Native. The Native culture is jointly created by the players, and there is a growing list of Rules that the Natives are called on to follow. For each Rule that a Native followed, the Colonizer must pay one token to that Native; for each rule that a Native broke, they must pay one token to the Colonizers. If a Native loses all tokens, they run amok and die in the following scene, and the Colonizer loses three tokens. The game ends when either the Colonizer, or all Natives, have lost all their tokens, followed by end game narration.
Dogs in the Vineyard
1st ed by Vincent Baker (2004) Lumpley Games
A western-genre game where the PCs are religious guardians (God's Watchdogs) in the community of the Faithful, which is based on 19th century Utah. Demons roam about the world, and can attempt to move in on towns which have given way to sin. Characters have four main attributes, which are each pools of two or more d6. They also have traits, relationships, and equipment which are rated as pools of other dice (i.e. d4, d6, d8, d10). Resolution is by conflict resolution: establish "What's at Stake" and then roll the dice for all stats related to that. The alternate sides then go through a process of a "Raise" using two of the dice, which must then be countered by the opposing side. You can alternately "Escalate" by switching to a different form of combat, such as going from social to physical. This raises the amount of "fallout" which can occur from the conflict.
Dog Town: The Ultimate Crime Experience
1st ed by Jonathan Ridd (2004) Cold Blooded Games
A modern crime RPG about goodfellas, wise guys, and other criminals from the 1970s era of mob rule in New York City. Specifically, it suggests that each PC be a crook who just got out of jail and who, while behind bars, was given the opportunity to make some fantastic business deal that requires one hundred grand within 90 days. It uses a skill-based system (the "Split System"), which resolves actions based on rolling over a target number on 1d20 determined from a universal chart of skill vs difficulty. Character creation is point-based, with 10 attributes, ads/disads ("Talents/Flaws"), and 33 skills. The attributes are rated from -2 to 5 in value: Bulk, Power, Toughness, Reflexes, Sense, Brains, Control, Style, Experience, and Luck.
Domination
1st ed by Blaine Pardoe (1989) StarChilde
An alien invasion RPG set in an alternate 1992 where the evil Kalotians and their allied aliens are invading Earth. It uses a percentile system (roll under attribute plus skill). Character creation is class-based, with random-roll attributes and point-bought skills.
Dominion Tank Police RPG
1st ed by David L. Pulver (1999) Guardians of Order
A futuristic RPG set in the world of the mange/anime series "Dominion Tank Police". The system ("Tri-Stat") is very simple, with three attributes (Body/Mind/Soul) and skills. Roll 2d6 under your stat, modified by skill. The rulebook also is a "resource book" on facts, trivia, and background about the series.
Donjon
1st ed by Clinton R. Nixon, Zak Arntson (2002) Anvilwerks
A fantasy-genre RPG with an emphasis on narrative control for the player. It uses a dice-pool system, rolling a number of d20s equal to attribute + skill and taking the highest. The GM rolls a number of d20s based on difficulty and the results are compared. Each success lets the player freely declare one statement about the action. For example, a successful search for secret doors roll allows the player to define that one is there to be found.
Don't Look Back: Terror is Never Far Behind
1st ed by Chuck McGrew, Richard Van Ingram (1995) Mind Ventures
2nd ed (1997)
A modern-day horror role-playing game. It uses an unusual dice pool system where you roll a number of d6 and keep the 3 highest or lowest depending on your Success Rating (found by comparing ability to difficulty).
Don't Rest Your Head
1st ed by Fred Hicks (2006) Evil Hat Productions
A modern-day horror role-playing game where the player characters are all insomniac protagonists with superpowers, fighting -- and using -- exhaustion and madness to stay alive and awake. It is set in a dark alternate reality called the Mad City. It uses an abstract dice pool system with stats for Discipline, Exhaustion, and Madness.
Don't Walk In Winter Wood
1st ed by Clint Krause (2006) Clint Krause Games
A short folkloric horror RPG set in an unnamed 18th-century village, where something threatening is in the nearby woods that the PCs must deal with. There is no character sheet, since characters have only one stat -- the number of Cold Points they have accumulated, representing emotional, psychological, or physical damage. The GM may ask yes or no questions, and if the player may answer yes only if they roll over their current number of Cold Points on 1d6.
Do: Pilgrims of the Flying Temple
1st ed by Daniel Solis (2011) Evil Hat Productions Smart Play Games
A cooperative GMless storytelling game where the player characters are teenaged emissaries and troubleshooters (pilgrims) for a vast temple in a realm of endless air dotted by small floating worlds. Each session is spurred by a letter to the pilgrims, which is written in-character but contains a number of "goal words" (usually around 20). The players take turns as storyteller. The current storyteller draws from a bag of black and white stones, and the combination drawn dictates limits on what the storyteller can narrate. The storyteller writes down one sentence, possibly helping the letter's author and crossing off one of the goal words - unless the pilgrim is "in trouble".
Doxy: A Roleplaying Game of Sex & Skullduggery
1st ed by Ian Warner (2011) Postmortem Studios
A roleplaying game set in lower class Georgian London, where the player characters are hardened lower-class whores. It uses a variant of the "Beer and Crisps" mechanics from the Urban Faerie and Courtesans games. The attributes for this game are Bitching, Bonking, Charming, Cheating, Daring, and Fighting.
Dragon Age
1st ed by Chris Pramas (2009) Green Ronin
A dark fantasy game, based on the computer and console game of the same name. The setting is Ferelden - a fantasy world populated by humans, elves, dwarves, and dragons. However, society is quite bleak - with dwarves withdrawn and elves downtrodden and abused. The primary monsters are a related group - called darkspawn, that rise up out of the ground to invade whole nations. The tabletop game uses a system called the "Adventure Game Engine" or "AGE". Action resolution is stat + 3d6, where doubles in the roll allow a number of stunts equal to the result on a single special die in the set (the Dragon Die). Character creation is random-roll attributes and option picks based on class.
Dragonball Z RPG
1st ed by Mike Pondsmith (1998) R Talsorian
An over-the-top martial arts RPG based on the Japanese animated series. It uses the Instant Fuzion system, with the addition of a "Power" stat and no upper limits.
Dragonfire
1st ed (1992) Heartbreaker Games
An introductory role-playing/board game, similar in format to Milton Bradley's better-known HeroQuest game. It features simple rules for role-playing, some adventures, a set of interchangeable room and corridor tiles, dice, plastic miniatures and a few other goodies.
Dragonlance: The Fifth Age
1st ed by William W. Connors (1998) TSR
An original fantasy game set in the Dragonlance fantasy world (fiction spin-off from D&D). The system ("SAGA system") is story-oriented, usng a special 82-card tarot-like deck instead of dice. Similar to Castle Falkenstein, actions are resolved by players by adding attribute plus the value a card played from their hand.
Dragonquest
1st ed by Eric Goldberg, David James Ritchie, Edward J. Woods (1980) SPI
2nd ed by Gerard Klug (1981)
3rd ed (1989) TSR
A fantasy-genre RPG focusing on hex-map-based combat. For its time, this featured a number of new system features in skills and action resolution. cf. John Kahane's DragonQuest introduction.
Dragonraid
1st ed (1984) Adventures for Christ
An evangelical Christian RPG which is aimed at getting players in to learn "Biblical priciples". Spells are cast by the player reciting "WordRunes" which are passages from the Bible. cf. the official website.
Dragonroar
1st ed (1985) Standard Games
Fantasy miniatures combat system and RPG, published as a boxed set including stand-up figures, dice, map, an introductory adventure ("A Matter of Honour"), and a cassette tape with instructions. It uses an introductory level system which emphasizes combat with various monsters. Hit points are shown as marked-off circles on a body diagram sheet. It has a single supplement, a boxed set entitled "The Zhevezh Gauntlet".
Dragons at Dawn: The First Fantasy Game System
1st ed by D.H. Boggs (2010) Southerwood Publishing
A fantasy RPG based on reconstruction of unpublished methods of play developed by Dave Arneson in the period 1970-1973. It has a basic game where characters are either Warriors or Wizards, and an enhanced game that adds Elf, Mage, Thief, Assassin, Merchant and Sage. While it is a predecessor to Dungeons & Dragons, the rules are often quite different.
Dragons of Underearth
1st ed by Keith Gross (1983) Metagaming
This is a mini-boardgame/RPG using a variant of the rules system from The Fantasy Trip, produced after TFT author Steve Jackson left for his own projects. All actions are considered to have happened simultaneously, so DX is not as important in getting a chance to do damage.
Dragon Storm
1st ed by Susan Van Camp, Mark Harmon (1995) Black Dragon Press
A fantasy-genre RPG, where players play shape-shifters such as Human/Dragon, and other traditional fantasy creatures. The system is card-based. Character creation is point-bought: choosing an illustrated "character card", and then spending remaining points on other cards for background, flaws (which give back points), and special abilities and/or magic. cf. the official website.
Dragon Warriors
1st ed by Dave Morris, Oliver Johnson (1982) Corgi Books
2nd ed (2008) Magnum Opus Press Mongoose Publishing
A fantasy-genre RPG which came in a series of 6 paperback books. (1: "Dragon Warriors", 2: "The Way of Wizardry", 3: "The Elven Crystals", 4: "Out of the Shadows", 5: "The Power of Darkness", 6: "The Lands of Legend"). cf. Cynewulf's Dragon Warriors page.
Dread
1st ed by Epidiah Ravachol, woodelf (2005) The Impossible Dream
A horror RPG which uses a diceless, numberless resolution mechanic centered on a tower of blocks such as the game, Jenga. If you can pull a block from the tower without it falling, the actions succeeds. If you choose not to pull, the action fails. If the tower collapses, your character is removed from the story (i.e. dies, goes insane, etc.). Character creation is by answering a series of questions about the character, with no numeric stats.
dread: The First Book of Pandemonium
1st ed by Rafael Chandler (2002) Malignant Games
Unrated ed by Rafael Chandler (2007) Neoplastic Press
A modern-day demon-fighting RPG. The PCs are a small team ("Cabal") of people who were exposed to demons and then recruited and trained in magic to fight them. It uses a simple dramatic system based on a d12 dice pool. Action resolution is roll (attribute + skill) d12's, where ties add +1 to the total, and try to get over the target number (2-14). Character creation is limited point-based, with 9 points to divide among the three attributes of Body, Mind, and Spirit. You then get skill points equal to 2x Mind.
Dread House: A game for kids and brave adults
1st ed by Emily Care Boss, Epidiah Ravachol (2010) Dig a Thousand Holes Publishing
A horror-themed role-playing board game intended for for "spooky children and brave adults." It uses custom cards and a Jenga tower for resolution. The player characters are teenagers who have dared each other to spend the night in Dread House. Character creation is by picking one of five pre-generated characters: Nerd, Bully, Athlete, Artist, Scaredy-Cat, or Gossip. Players then take turns exploring rooms in the haunted house, as mapped out on the game board. When they enter a new room, the next player draws a card from the custom Spooky Deck and creatively narrates what is there based on the brief card text. The narrator may get a Spooky token if the description is very creepy. To successfully Brave It Out in that room, the player must make a pull from the Jenga tower - or they may choose from other options.
DreamCatcher
1st ed by Ashok Desai (2006) Sane Studios
A surreal mini-RPG set in the land of dreams, inhabited by various creatures including the bird-like Anothen who create blissful dreams, the shapeless black Katothen who create nightmares, or the watery blob-like Metaksy Dyo who mediate between them. The player characters are the dream-selfs of people in this realm, who may be part of the DreamCatcher society that protect the sleeping minds of humanity, or may be Dream Thiefs who steal ingenuity out of people's heads. It uses a simple dice pool system where each character has three rated stats: Mojo, Dream, and Will. In resolution, the player rolls a number of d6s equal to stat, where every die equal to or higher than the difficulty (2-6) is a success. Dangerous tasks also have a threat level (1-3), and any dice equal to or less than this are lost for the remainder of the session.
The Dreaming Crucible: A Storytelling Game
1st ed by Joel P. Shempert (2010) Story by the Throat! Press
A fantasy genre storytelling game for three players about Faerie journeys, designed to play out in an hour and a half. One player character is a troubled child or adolescent (the Hero/Heroine) who goes to a magical realm to face fear and pain. The other two players act out the forces of the Light Faerie (ally) and Dark Faerie (opposition). Character creation is by defining freeform Elements to be written on cards: a Gift and Flaw for the Hero/Heroine, Allies for the Light Faerie, and a Nemesis and Powers for the Dark Faerie. Resolution is by drawing stones out of a bag when an obstacle is reached, each player putting in stones from a pool on each Element. The Hero/Heroine and Light Faerie put in white stones, while the Dark Faerie puts in black stones. The owner of the winning stone gets the option to place it on the Element their opponent just used, gaining some ownership of the opponent's Element. An element that uses all its stones is permanently transformed, and once all stones of either color are used, the game is over.
Dream Park
1st ed by Mike Pondsmith (1992) R Talsorian
An RPG based on the sci-fi novels by Larry Niven, where the characters play in a futuristic big-budget, live-action role-playing games. The book is geared for beginners, with board-game-like introductory scenarios and pre-made character cards, spell cards, etc. The system is quite simple, a variant of "Interlock", using skill+1d6 vs difficulty. Character creation is by choosing a class (which gives a package of basic skills), then adding points for advantages and skill modifications. The base system is for unrealistic cross-genre in-Park "game-play"... where medieval knights fight gun-toting cyberpunks on semi-even footing.
Dreamwalker: Roleplaying in the Land of Dreams
1st ed by Peter C. Spahn, Michael Patton, David Griffin (2002) self-published
A modern magic RPG where you you play a psychic in the employ of a government project (Project Dreamwalker), who enters the dreams of others to rid troubled minds of the Taeniid infestation. It uses a percentile skill-based system, which is adaptable as guidelines for dream-based adventures in any system.
The Dresden Files Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Leonard Balsera, Chad Underkoffler, Ryan Macklin, Jim Butcher, Genevieve Cogman, Rob Donoghue, Fred Hicks, Kenneth Hite, Clark Valentine (2010) Evil Hat Productions
An urban fantasy RPG based on the novel series of the same name by Jim Butcher. It uses a variant of the FATE system from Spirit of the Century, along with an extensive system of magic and supernatural powers. Characters begin with different number of Fate points at the start of each based on a base number for the campaign (Base Refresh Rate) minus the number of points of powers they have. In addition, it adds armor and weapon strength that modify the stress inflicted with a successful hit.
The Drifter's Escape
1st ed by Ben Lehman (2009) Tao Games
A short narrative RPG for 3-7 people about a lone drifter (i.e. homeless vagabond) in the U.S., designed to be played in 1-3 hours. One player role-plays the Drifter, while the other players represent The Devil and The Man - abstract forces that are trying to own his life and soul. The book includes with a collection of seven short stories about the American drifter, by Jake Lehman.
Droids
1st ed by Neil Patrick Moore, Derek Stanovsky (1983) Integral Games
A sci-fi mini-RPG (digest-sized) about robots trying to survive after humanity destroyed their world. Character creation is by assembling your droid piece by piece (legs/wheels/treads, powerplant, sensors, etc.). It includes a sample scenario of exploring an abandoned military complex.
Drowning & Falling
1st ed by Jason Morningstar (2006) Bully Pulpit Games
A parody of other RPGs, in particular detailed rules for drowning, falling, and other such hazards. It includes fifteen attributes, five character classes (Warrior, Wizard, Cleric, Elf, and Dwarfling), two alignments (Good and Evil), and over twenty three spells and prayers.
Duck Trooper
1st ed by Richard Tucholka (1991) Tri-Tac Games
A humorous combat RPG (64 page) about re-taking your planet from alien Duck invaders from another dimension. "Now they have the planet and you have the firepower and the will to take back your homes."
Duel
1st ed by Bruce Harlick, Ray Greer, Paul Arden Lidberg (1992) Crunchy Frog
A universal RPG system, although geared mainly for the fantasy genre. It uses a simple skill-based system with 3 attributes (Body, Agility, Mind). Character creation is by open point-build, spending 35 points on attributes and skills. Action resolution is by rolling under skill on 1d10, with special cases for combat. It also uses d5's (1d10/2 or 1d6 reroll 6) for damage, initiative, and some other cases. The basic game is 36 pages and includes a brief magic system, a 3-page sample fantasy world, and a 5-page solor adventure. It has a genre book ("Wooden Suits and Iron Men", by Sam Witt, 1994), an advanced rules supplement ("Mega-DUEL"), and a fantasy adventure ("Secret Liaison").
Dune: Chronicles of the Imperium
1st ed by Owen M. Seyler, Christian Moore, Matthew Colville (2000) Last Unicorn Games
A spacefaring science-fiction RPG based on the novels by Frank Herbert. It uses a variant of the "Icon" system developed for the Star Trek: The Next Generation RPG. This was only published in a "Limited Edition" before the publishing company disappeared.
Dungeon Crawl Classics RPG
1st ed by Joseph Goodman (2012) Goodman Games
A fantasy RPG based in part on a mix of editions of the D&D game. It uses some unified mechanics similar to later editions, but also has many old school features such as classes for Elf, Dwarf, and Halfling. There are also many differences, including magic that is not limited in spells per day, but every spell must roll a check against its result table. Character creation is by a "funnel" where each player creates at least three 0th level characters, and continue play with the ones that survive. Creation is very simple, rolling straight 3d6 in order for the attributes: Strength, Agility, Stamina, Personality, Intelligence and Luck. A character class is chosen only for characters who survive to 1st level.
Dungeons and Dragons
1st ed by Gary Gygax, Dave Arneson (1973) TSR
Basic Set 1st ed ed by J. Eric Holmes (1977)
Basic Set 2nd ed by Tom Moldvay (1980)
Expert Set 1st ed by David Cook (1980)
Basic Set 3rd ed by Frank Mentzer (1983)
Expert Set 2nd ed by Frank Mentzer (1983)
Companion Set ed by Frank Mentzer (1984)
Master Set ed by Gary Gygax, Frank Mentzer (1985)
Immortals Set ed by Frank Mentzer (1986)
Rules Cyclopedia ed by Aaron Allston (1991)
3rd ed by Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, Skip Williams (2000) Wizards of the Coast
Adventure Game ed by Bill Slavicsek (2000)
Version 3.5 ed (2003)
Basic Game ed by Jonathan Tweet (2004)
4th ed by Rob Heinsoo, Andy Collins, James Wyatt (2008)
5th ed by Jeremy Crawford, Michael Mearls (2014)
The original fantasy role-playing game, a swords-and-sorcery genre game vaguely based on Tolkien, Howard, and Lieber. The first edition in 1973 was an add-on to Guidon Games' Chainmail miniatures rules. It was a boxed set with three booklets ("Men & Magic", "Monsters & Treasure", and "The Underworld and Wilderness Adventures"). This used the term "hobbits" which was changed to "halflings" in the reprint after a clash with the Tolkien estate.
Later, after AD&D was released, the "Basic Set" was re-introduced as an easier first introduction to AD&D, covering only levels 1-3. Races were "simplified" to each be their own class (i.e. so elves are "elf" class instead of being forced to be mixed Fighting Man / Magic-user). In 1980 this was then expanded into a separate line of game sets: Basic / Expert / Companion / Master / Immortal. The first two sets went through several editions, and then the first 4 sets were later collected and edited into the "Rules Cyclopedia". This line was dropped in the mid-90's.
The "3rd edition" is really a new edition of AD&D with a wholly redesigned system, known as the "D20 System". The "Adventure Game" is a standalone boardgame with 8 pregenerated characters along with 3 premade adventures and random dungeon generators, but with no character generation rules.
Dungeon World
1st ed by Sage LaTorra, Adam Koebel (2012) Sage Kobold Productions
A fantasy RPG in the milieu of Dungeons & Dragons, but using rules adapted from Apocalypse World. Character creation is by picking a playbook, assigning the six attribute scores, choosing moves, and making connections with the other player characters. Only players roll for resolution, rolling 2d6 + attribute modifier after the GM decides that a Move has been activated. There are no difficulty modifiers. The rules emphasize drawing on the fiction, including a series of diceless Moves for the GM to draw on.
Dust Devils: The Truly Gritty Old West Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Matt Snyder (2002) Chimera Creative
A wild west RPG. It uses an unusual playing card system. The character draws a number of cards based on the sum of two attributes. Highest poker hands across opposed characters determines who wins a conflict, but highest single card determines who narrates the outcome. Players also have chips which may be spent to draw extra cards or other effects. Each character has a Devil representing his "worser nature" which can modify actions.
Duty & Honour
1st ed by Neil Gow (2008) Omnihedron Games
A role-playing game of military action in the Napaleonic era - where the PCs are members of the British army under the Duke of Wellington. The resolution system is based on playing cards, where each player has their own deck of cards. The players draws a pool of cards based on stat to resolve an entire combat or other conflict, where each card that beats a randomly-drawn "Card of Fate" is one success. Play is structured around mechanically-defined missions. Character creation uses a lifepath system.
The Dying Earth RPG
1st ed by Robin D. Laws, John R. Snead, Peter Freeman (2001) Pelgrane Press
A fantasy RPG set in the world of the novels by Jack Vance -- an ancient world populated by a desperately extravagant people, rich with magic. It uses a simple system where a single d6 roll determines the results (1=worst to 6=best), where higher ability gives you a number of rerolls (your "ability pool") which refreshes every 2 to 8 hours. Character creation is open point-based, where you can gain bonus points by accepting random choices. It has an in-depth magic system based closely on the series.
Dystopia: America 2155 A.D.
1st ed by Gavin Hadaller (2001) Politically Incorrect Games
A science-fiction game set in 2155 A.D. America, where you are part of the oppressed masses fighting against the totalitarian control of the megacorporations. The system is skill-based, based on rolling under your stat or skill on 1d10 (where 10 is a botch and 1 is a critical success). Character creation uses random-roll attributes and point-bought skills (with modifiers for Social Class and Lifestyle).
EABA
1st ed by Greg Porter (2002) BTRC
A universal system, published as a 150-page downloadable PDF file. It is a open-ended d6 system similar to the previous BTRC game CORPS but intended to be more heroic in scope. Character creation is limited point-based, with separate points for the six attributes (Strength, Agility, Health, Awareness, Will, and Fate) and skills. It uses a universal logarithmic scale where each +3 doubles the effect.
Early Dark
1st ed by Calvin Johns, Travis Rinehart, Chuck Wendig (2011) Anthropos Games
A low-fantasy game set in a world filled with magic, specifically a set of societies around the Hara Sea. It is set at the very end of a great war sparked by humans who had found secret ancient magick hidden deep within the earth. Human life is rough, and magick is unpredictable and feared, even by those who wield it. It uses a d10 dice pool, with stats for aptitudes (Fight, Cunning, Labor, Touch, Relate, Guile, Thrive) and for domains (Mundane, Arcane, Loom). Character creation is a mix of random-roll and limited point allocation.
EarthAD.2 RPG
1st ed by Brett M. Bernstein, Peter C. Spahn (2007) Politically Incorrect Games
A post-apocalyptic science fiction RPG, set in a future where the remains of earth is plagued by cyborgs, mutants, plague carriers, and sentient animals. It uses a variant of the genreDiversion system also used by Coyote Trail.
The Earth & Sky Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Scott C. Hungerford, Jesse McGatha, Richard Thames Rowan, Bahia Rowan (1999) Lamplighter Design Studio Rubicon Games
Collector's ed (2001) Gaslight Press
An RPG of modern urban faerie tales and fantasy, where the power of belief brings to life fictional characters. PC's include wizards and dream walkers. The background includes a faerie realm (the Borderlands), along with unicorns, dragons, and so forth. It uses a rules-lite system.
Earthdawn
1st ed by Greg Gorden, Louis J. Prosperi (1993) FASA
1.5th ed (1994)
2nd ed (2001) Living Room Games
3rd ed (2009) RedBrick LLC
A dark fantasy RPG set in a prehistoric mythic era of the world of Barsaive (a parallel Earth), where various "Horrors" have destroyed or corrupted most of the world. From strongholds ("kaers"), the people are slowly reclaiming the land from these Horrors. Races include elves, dwarves, orks, and trolls as well as windling, obsidimen, and lizardmen. It uses a combined class/skill based system. Resolution is by a "step-die" roll vs difficulty: skill + modifiers on a universal chart determines your die roll (d4,d6,d8,etc.).
Eclipse Phase
1st ed by Rob Boyle, John Snead, Brian Cross, Jack Graham, Lars Blumenstein (2009) Posthuman Studios LLC Catalyst Game Labs
A transhuman sci-fi/horror game, released under the Creative Commons license (non-commercial, share-alike). It is set 10 years after the fall of humanity ("The Fall") - when the Earth and colonies were devasted by advanced artifical intelligences (TITANs) that went out of control and then disappeared along with millions of humans whose minds were forcibly uploaded. Five wormhole gateways to other systems were found following the Fall, and contact has been made with aliens known as the Factors. It uses a percentile skill-based system, with success determined by rolling 1d100 under skill + modifiers, with doubles (11, 22, etc.) being critical. Since characters may switch bodies, stats are distinguished between ego (self) and morph (current body). Attributes are Initiative, Speed, Durability, Wound Threshold, Lucidity, Trauma Threshold, Moxie, and Damage Bonus.
The Edge of Midnight: A role-playing game of mean streets and lost souls
1st ed by Rob Vaux (2006) Edge of Midnight Press Studio 2 Publishing
A fantasy noir RPG, set in a world based on film noir mixed with magic and horror. The primary nation is the United Commonwealth, a parallel of post-war USA, but it is plagued by inhuman "gaunts". It uses a skill-based system, where the players rolls 2d10 and adds one die to skill (the skill die) and one die to attribute. If both the skill total and attribute total match or exceed the difficulty, it is a full success. If only one does, it is a partial success (either by skill or by raw talent).
Ehdrigohr
1st ed by Allen Turner (2013) Council of Fools Productions
A Fate Core based tabletop role-playing game where you play heroes in a fantasy world based on a mix of American Indian and other tribal cultures.
Eldritch Ass Kicking
1st ed by Nathan J. Hill (2001) Mystic Ages Online
Extended Remix ed (2004) Key 20 Publishing Mystic Ages Online
A humorous fantasy game about "arcane action and old men with sticks". The characters are wizards in the former fantasy realm of Anhelm, which has been torn apart and cast into a strange void. Now the wizards of the realm duel, gossip, and meet in taverns. It uses a simple system with three attributes: Agility, Endurance, and Concentration. Action resolution is by (skill or attribute) + 2d10, with zeroes counting as zero, and compare to difficulty. Success gives you limited ability to narrate the outcome. Magic is divided into schools, with the defaults being Air, Earth, Fire, and Water. Magical effects are largely freeform. There is an optional rule for "Hubris" points which may be spent to alter rolls.
Eldritch Skies
1st ed by John Snead, A.J. Luxton (2012) Battlefield Press
A science fiction horror RPG, set in 2030 of an alternate history that proceeds from Lovecraft's horror stories. In 1931, an expedition found the elder ones' city in Antarctica; in 1947, the mi-go crashed in Roswell; in 1958, an occult trip to Mars was tried; in 1994, scientists mastered the lightspeed barrier. In 2030, there is spacefaring via sorcery-powered hyperspace along with machine-made telepathy, augmentations, and unprecedented levels of automation. Ghouls and Deep Ones are ab-human minorities, and a UN-run space patrol battles devious mi-go and marauding moonbeasts. It uses the Cinematic Unisystem originally developed for Eden Studios' Buffy the Vampire Slayer RPG.
Elemental Axes
1st ed by Eric Seaton (2003) Crosstime Games
2nd ed by Eric Seaton (2007) Crosstime Games
A fantasy genre system. It includes an original fantasy setting, describing the history and geography of a great empire, along with savage creatures of the world. It uses a percentile skill-based system using a single skill-vs-skill action table for all challenges. Character generation uses a limited point-buy system, where you assign separate points for skills and backgrounds. There are no attributes, only a large skill list.
Element Masters
1st ed by Kenneth Burridge, Robert Finkbeiner, Kevin Nelson, Brian Pettitt (1982) Escape Ventures
2nd ed (1984)
A fantasy-genre RPG, set in a medieval fantasy world ("Vinya") into which aliens are pouring from a interdimensional gate (related to magical transporters which interconnect the continent). It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation is primarily random-roll with a few choices. PC's are assumed to be militia with some magic. The 3rd edition, or remake, of this game was published as Gatewar.
Elfquest
1st ed by Steve Perrin, Sandy Petersen, Yurek Chodak (1984) Chaosium
2nd ed (1989)
A fantasy role-playing game set in the world of the comic series "Elfquest". It uses a variant of Chaosium's Basic Role-Playing system.
Elfs
1st ed by Ron Edwards (2001) Adept Press
A humorous mini-RPG poking fun at elf stereotypes in fantasy RPGs. The mechanics are intended to allow for unintentional consequences of PC actions. Illustrated by Jeff Diamond.
El-Hazard
1st ed by Jesse Scoble (2001) Guardians of Order
An RPG based on the Japanese anime series El-Hazard, directed by Tenchi Muyo! co-creator Hiroki Hayashi. The series details the adventures of high school student Makoto Mizuhara after he is pulled into an alternate dimension, the fantasy world of El-Hazard, where he must battle against an evil insectoid empire. Like other GOO adaptations, the core book includes detailed background on the series. It uses a variant of the Big Eyes, Small Mouth system.
Elric!
1st ed by Lynn Willis, Richard Watts, Mark Morrison, Jimmie W. Pursell, Jr., Sam Shirley, Joshua Shaw (1993) Chaosium
A dark fantasy role-playing game set in the world of Michael Moorcock's Young Kingdoms series. This is really an edition of Chaosium's Stormbringer with a different name, which was released between 4th and 5th editions. It uses a version of Chaosium's percentile system, Basic Roleplaying, notably with fast character creation and very high skills -- recommending combat skills of 100% or more.
Elric of Melnibone
1st ed by Lawrence Whitaker (2007) Mongoose Publishing
A dark fantasy role-playing game set in the world of Michael Moorcock's Young Kingdoms series. This is to some degree an edition of Chaosium's Stormbringer with a different name, released after the 5th edition. It uses a variant of the RuneQuest system developed by Mongoose Publishing.
Ember Twilight
1st ed by Troy Costisick, Peter Evan, John Gordon, Brian Hagerty (2002) Twilight Press, Inc.
A fantasy role-playing game set in an original fantasy world, It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation uses a system of many professions -- including warrior, paladin, archer, scout, essence bender, and intercessor.
Empire of Dust
1st ed by Amy Garcia, Clint Krause (2008) Red Design KNRPG Productions
A sci-fi/fantasy role-playing game set on a war-torn desert planet called Osaris, although there are fertile Riverlands. A demonic world-conquerer, Thron, crash-landed in the Xadian capital and killed the King, supported by human legions kept subservient by addiction to Osaris "dust." The Xadians have super-tech including sentient Geara androids along with "Gunknights." There are also native Bruta, and invading space-bugs (Krythids). The game uses the "Epiphany Engine" game system. Resolution uses rolling under attribute on 1d20, and if the roll exactly matches the rating is raised by one (called an epiphany).
Empire of Satanis
1st ed by Darrick Dishaw (2005) self-published
A horror role-playing game, where the characters are fiends which live in a hellish universe called Yidathroth, or visit the human world (known to them as Sha-la). The content is offered free from www.cultofcthulhu.net, but there is also a print-on-demand version. There are fourteen races of fiends -- and all are unfathomably evil, and strive towards godhood through dark magics. It uses a dice-pool system, where resolution is by rolling attribute + skill d6s, and taking the highest -- where sixes are open-ended. Also, once each scene a player can roll 1d6, and if the result is a six, the player can declare a statement to be true in the game.
Empire of the Petal Throne
1st ed by M.A.R. Barker (1975) TSR
2nd ed (1983) Gamescience
A non-traditional fantasy game set on a unique alien world called "Tekumel". Set 60,000 years in the future, Tekumel was settled by Earth, but a great disaster threw Tekumel into a pocket dimension where gods and magic existed. The setting has a strong Hindu and Aztec flavor rather than European, and is lavishly detailed. There are three other games set in this world that were published later: Swords & Glory (1983), Gardisayal (1995), and Tekumel (2005).
Enchanted Worlds
Starter Kit ed by Matthew Rodgers, Daniel Price (2001) New Worlds Gaming
This is a fantasy RPG set in an original fantasy world called Unlond. The system is a simple skill-based system, where resolution is by rolling under attribute or skill on 2d8. Character creation is by allocating a pool of attribute points among the 8 attributes and a pool of skill points among the skills. The system includes a brief magic system. The starter kit includes the 32 page rulebook, a 20 page adventure: "Autumn Harvest", a reference card, a full color map, two eight sided dice, and a dice bag.
The End
1st ed by Joseph E. Donka (1997) Scapegoat Games
A bleak post-biblical-apocalypse RPG, where characters are the survivors of the Rapture whom God has abandoned: the Good being taken to Heaven and the Evil to Hell. Characters are ordinary people in a world where chaos reigns.
Enemy Gods
1st ed by John Wick (2003) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A mythic fantasy game, where players take dual roles of both a mythic Hero and a watchful God. The God guides the Hero and friends through adventures, and as the Heroes' popularity grows, the power of the Gods does as well. The more powerful the Gods become, the more they can aid the Heroes. It uses a narration-focused dice-pool system, the "Advantage" system, where extra dice can be acquired by looking for advantages your character has in a particular situation, each of which earns an extra die.
Enforcers
1st ed by Gary Bernard, Charles Mann, Larry Troth (1987) 21st Century
A sci-fi superhero RPG set in 2046 after superpower mutations began arising in 1999. It uses a percentile system. Character creation is random-roll attributes, and point-buy of superpowers and of binary skills. Reviewed in White Wolf #11.
En Garde
1st ed by Daryl Hany, Frank Chadwick (1975) GDW
2nd ed (1977)
3rd ed (1989) SFC Press
A tabletop game of duellists in 17th Century France. As originally published, it is primarily a set of duelling rules with rudimentary rules for membership in regiments and social interaction (carousing). It has been greatly expanded as a PBeM game, however. cf. the En Garde homepage and SFC Press.
Engel
1st (German) ed by Oliver Graute, Oliver Hoffman, Kai Meyer (2001) Feder & Schwert
1st (English) ed (2002) White Wolf
A biblical fantasy RPG, set in the 27th century after the Biblical End Times has fallen over the land. The PCs are either "engels" or their human allies -- where engels are essential angels created to battle insectile demons known as the Dreamseed. The original German edition uses a system (the "Arcana" system) using tarot cards, with an emphasis on storytelling. The English edition uses a standalone system based on the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D. Engels have five new classes, while Humans may be Fighters and Rogues priests of the Angelitic Church tend to be Experts or Aristocrats (the OGL NPC classes).
Eoris Essence RPG
1st ed by David Torres, Alejandro Cárdenas, Nicolás Acosta (2009) Visions of Essence, LLC
A fantasy RPG emphasizing high-quality art in an original world. It uses a dice pool system, rolling a number of d20s equal to skill or attribute, where every result over the target number (base 15) is a success. Each rool includes an additional d20, the "essence die," that modifies success or failure.
EPIC Role Playing
1st ed by Chris Organ, Kent Davis (2005) Dark Matter Studios
Revised ed by Chris Organ, Kent Davis, Andrew Mertz, Andy Monroe (2007) Dark Matter Studios
Mark III ed by Chris Organ (2011) Dark Matter Studios
A fantasy role-playing game set in an original fantasy world, Eslin, centered on the high feudal kingdom of Rullaea along with the Scandanavian-like icy lang of Rimenor and the region of Ursyos-Elkiknon where men are enslaved to by cruel invaders from another dimension -- the seven-foot tall, grey-skinned, mentalist Buruk. Action resolution uses 2d10. Character creation uses a life path at the end of which the player selects a profession, guild, lone master, or teacher is chosen from the specific realm of the campaign.
EPICS: Deserve to Survive
1st ed by J. Scott Pittman (2000) Dragonslayer Games
A universal RPG system, an acronym for "Easy, Player-Initiated Game System". It uses a system of developing characters as you go. Players earn Survival Points for thinking fast, good role-playing and adding detail to their characters during the course of play. The basic game includes a sample setting, "A.N.G.E.L.S.", a modern world where heroes with rare inhuman powers fight against supernatural creatures and government plots.
Epiphany
1st ed by Greg Porter (1996) BTRC
An Atlantean-age fantasy game using a unique diceless system. Players match against the GM by splitting their stat into fingers of each hand (i.e. stat 5 could be 3 in one hand and 2 in the other, say). This is similar in principle to rock-paper-scissors, but accounts for a range of skills and difficulties.
Epoch: Age of Magic
1st ed by Chris Rutkowsky (2001) Basic Action Games
A fantasy RPG using a percentile system which mixes pure skill and trade grouping. Skills are grouped under three trades: Warrior, Rogue, and Scholar. Each character designates one trade each as Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary. The priority determines a multiplier: x6 for Primary, x5 for Secondary, and x4 for Tertiary. Action resolution is by adding attribute + skill, multiplying by trade multiplier, adding difficulty modifier, and then rolling under that number on percentile dice. In combat, a hit roll is by a roll modified by targets avoid percentage -- followed by hit location and damage (using d6s) upon success. Character creation is a mix of random-roll and point-buy, where skill points can be used to modify the results of random rolls for race, social class, handedness, and attributes. Remaining skill points are used to buy skills within the three groupings.
Era Ten
1st ed by Joseph Hillmer, George Rahm (1992) Better Games
A sci-fi space marine RPG, set in a future where humans and their four alien allies (known as the "Tetra League") have been infected by a "pacification virus." The PC's are rare members of the species who are immune to the virus, and are thus pressed into service as powered-armor marines who defend the league from outside attack. It uses the "Free-style Roleplay" system from Crimson Cutlass, and also comes with extensive guidelines for generating random missions and other scenarios. The Space Gamer magazine published two mini-RPGs based on this: Battle Born (in issue #1) and Guardians of Sol (in issue #5). The PC's gain abilities by downloading capabilities into their spacesuit. Use of these suit skills are the only types of rolls the player makes during game play.
Eric Flint's 1632 Resource Guide and Role Playing Game
1st ed by Jonathan M. Thompson (2005) Battlefield Press
An role-playing adaptation of the time-traveling novel by Eric Flint, where in May of the year 2000, a six-mile sphere, centered on Grantville, West Virginia, was displaced in space and time to 1631 Germany. The system is a variant of the Action! System from Gold Rush Games.
Escape from Tentacle City: A Dark Comedy Game of Survival Horror
1st ed by Willow Palecek (2009) self-published
A comedic horror RPG for 4-6 people, with a rotating GM position and a pool of many characters. Each player creates a group of characters from among marginalized members of society within Tentacle City, which is being menaced by giant tentacles. Each player then also creates one character in each of the other groups. The players then take turns setting a scene and acting as GM for the group they created.
The Esoterrorists
1st ed by Robin D. Laws (2006) Pelgrane Press
A modern-day horror RPG where the PCs are investigators in a secret conspiracy cell, fighting the Esoterrorists -- a loose affiliation of occultists intent on tearing apart reality itself. It uses a new system, called the GUMSHOE rules. It uses diceless point-spending to resolve investigative skills, and die rolls modified by points for core skills. Character creation is limited point-based, with no attributes and splitting between the 39 investigative skills and the 13 core skills.
Espionage
1st ed by George MacDonald, Steve Peterson (1983) Hero Games
A secret agent RPG, using a variant of the 2nd edition Champions rules. This was revised with a new title as Danger International in 1985.
Eternal Soldier
1st ed by Chris Arnold, Rob Arnold, Joe Mays (1986) Tai-Gear Simulations
A universal system, providing combat rules usable in any genre or time period. It uses a skill-based percentile system, using other polyhedral dice as well. Character creation allows attributes to be generated by several means, with point-bought skills. The rules were later made available free from Tai-Gear's website. Reviewed in White Wolf #9.
Etherscope
1st ed by Nigel McClelland, Ben Redmond (2005) Goodman Games
A modern fantasy RPG using a variant of the D20 System as found in D20 Modern. It is set in the year 1984 of an alternate history where psychic technology using the ether was discovered in 1874. Modern etherscopes are devices by which human minds could enter Etherspace, a psychic parallel to the Internet. There are many other steampunk and cyberpunk elements, including eugenically-modified humans. The strains include the standard Betas, improved Alphas, ratlike Gammas, doglike Deltas, and horselike Epsilons. In the larger world, there are three superpowers: Britain, America, and Germany's New Reich. Among all, Victorian virtues like social stratification, imperialism, and scientific progress rule unchallenged. The system includes six basic classes (Broker, Combatant, Enginaught, Pursuer, Savant and Scoundrel) and twelve advanced character classes (Cybernaught, Explorer, Tab-Jammer, Thief, Industrialist, Occult Investigator, Program Crater, Scope Rider, Scope Warrior, Spy and Street Mercenary).
Everlasting
Book of the Unliving ed by Steven Brown (1997) Visionary Games
Book of the Light ed (1998)
Book of the Spirits ed (1998)
Book of the Fantastical ed (2003)
A modern-day urban fantasy game, which comes in several parts detailing the "Secret World" of eldritch creatures unseen in everyday life. The fantasy elements are much more traditional than White Wolf's similar series (i.e. based on folklore rather than recent fiction like Anne Rice, neo-paganism, etc.) The shared system uses a pool of d12's (based on attribute) rolled against a target number based on skill and difficulty. The game(s) also have diceless and percentile-die variants.
"Book of the Unliving" details Ghuls, Revenants, and Vampires. "Book of the Light" details angels and divinely-inspired humans fighting demons and werewolves.
EverQuest Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Steve Wieck (2002) White Wolf
A fantasy genre RPG based on the popular multiplayer online computer RPG. It is set on the world of Norrath, inhabited by humans, elves, and dwarves as well as reptilian Iksar and aquatic Kedge. The rules are a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D, although it does not use the D20 trademark and includes complete character creation and combat rules.
Everway
1st ed by Jonathan Tweet (1995) Wizards of the Coast
1.5th ed (1996) Rubicon Games
2nd ed (unknown) Gaslight Press
A dimension-hopping fantasy game, using a story-oriented diceless system. The game features a fixed deck of "fortune" cards, similar to a tarot deck, which is used to subjectively influence the GM's resolution. There are collectible "image" cards with various original artwork on them, used to inspire character creation and adventure design. Character creation is guided by a set of image card draws, using a loose point-based mechanic to buy attributes, special powers, and magic. There are four attributes: air, earth, fire, and water -- with each element representing a side of character ability.
Exalted
1st ed by Geoffrey C. Grabowski, Robert Hatch, Ken Cliffe, Richard Thomas, Stephan Wieck, Andrew Bates, Dana Habecker, Sheri M.Johnson, Chris McDonough (2001) White Wolf
A fantasy RPG set in a mythic age when the Exalted ruled a vast empire which controls the world. The Exalted are those who can channel Essence for magical powers. It uses a variant of the "Storyteller" dice pool system.
Excursion into the Bizarre
1st ed by Wolfgang Trippe, Brian Carlson (1985) Blind Dog Games
A tongue-in-cheek cross-genre RPG where some denizens of a fantasy world are carried by "Vorpal Winds" into a strange new world: twentieth century Earth. There are two home dimensions: Oort, a dimension of treasure-obsessed, dungeoneering elves, orcs, and the like; and Chon-Blu, a parallel universe where furries rule the earth. Character creation is by rolling best 4 out of 5d6 for the five attributes (Strength, Constitution, Agility, Intelligence, and Wisdom/Intuition); then dividing 250 points among a set of percentile skills (with a minimum of 5 skills and a maximum of Intelligence/5). The basic game includes a magic system and division of humanity into enemies, allies, and neutrals.
Expendables
1st ed by L. Lee Cerny, Walter H. Mytczenskyj, Michael A. Thomas (1987) Stellar Games
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, where PC's are explorers hired to find new planets to be exploited by the monolithic company they work for. There is not much background except for extensive equipment lists. Character creation is class-based with random-roll attributes and point-buy skills (assigned a number of dice to different skills). Advancement is level-based. Reviewed in White Wolf #10.
Exquisite Replicas
1st ed by Lee Foster, Monica Valentinelli, John R. Phythyon Jr., Werner Hager, Todd Cash (2008) Abstract Nova Entertainment
A modern-day horror game set in a world where people and things are being replaced by mysterious duplicates. The player characters are people who have joined the Anonymous -- a loose movement mask-wearing rebels that is set on destroying the replicas and attempting to return the real versions to this world. Character creation is limited point- based, by declaring priority between physical attributes, mental attributes, occupation, and advantages. Characters are also rated in three psychological areas: Paranoia, Violence, and Immorality. It uses a dice pool system, rolling a number of d10s equal to attribute plus skill, where each result of "1" gives one success, each result of "2" gives two successes, and all other results are ignored.
The Extraordinary Adventures of Baron Munchausen
1st ed by Baron Munchausen, James Wallis (1998) Hogshead Games
2nd ed (2008) Magnum Opus Press
A storytelling game, part of a series of new games that are innovative, short (typically 16 pages), and quick-to-play(1 hour or less). The characters are 18th century nobles outrageously boasting of their accomplishments.
Extreme Vengeance
1st ed by Tony Lee (1997) Archangel
A highly cinematic action-movie game where players take the role of type-case actors in action movies. The game, in theory, allows the gamemaster to move the characters into any type of action movie. Characters are designed by combining a Descriptor and a Designator, which gives two attributes: Guts and Coincidence, along with ads ("Repertoires") and disads ("No-Goods"). It uses a simple dice-pool system, totalling a number of d6's based on attribute, modified by how exciting the GM rates the action. There are two supplements: a sourcebook titled "Maximum Damage" and a trilogy of adventures titled "Die and Die Again".
F20
Gamers against Cancer Edition ed by Timothy Jones (2004) Flying Mice LLC Chine Games
A brief (24 page) generic game system using a variation of the D20 Modern SRD. Action resolution is Stat + Skill + 1d20. Character creation is open point-based.
Fading Suns
1st ed by Bill Bridges, Andrew Greenberg (1996) Holistic Design
2nd ed (1999)
Revised ed by Todd Bogenrief, Vidar Edland, Chris Wiese, Andrew Greenberg, Bill Bridges, Phil Cameron, Richard Ashley, Thomas Baroli, Ruben Ramos, Mark Stout, James Sutton (2012) RedBrick LLC
A dark-ages sci-fi game set in a decaying empire where technology is distrusted, dominated by the Universal Church. The system is based on rolling a d20 under attribute+skill, where degree of success is determined by the "blackjack" method (i.e. your actual roll equals your success level, unless you fail).
Fae Noir
1st ed by Justin Bow (2007) Green Fairy Games
A role-playing game set in an alternate version of America in the 1920s, with the addition of magic and fae beings -- elves, trolls, and so forth.
Faery's Tale
1st ed by Patrick Sweeney, Sandy Antunes, Christina Stiles, Robin Laws (2006) Firefly Games
Deluxe ed (2007) Firefly Games
An RPG aimed at young children about playing faeries in the enchanted forest of Brightwood, a mythic medieval setting. The PCs are one of four types of faery: Pixies, Brownies, Sprites, or Pookas. It uses a dice pool system, rolling a number of d6s equal to the appropriate attribute, where even numbers are a success, and a "6" allows you to roll an additional die. Players may also spend Essence Points for successes as well as magical effects or others. Character creation is by picking a type of faery, distributing 9 points among the three attributes (Body, Mind, and Spirit), and spending points on Gifts.
Fallen Alliance
1st ed (1999) Nebula
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, set in the distant future 75 years after the great Alliance has broken down. The Frontier (a large section of the galaxy opposite from Earth) is a wild place where pockets of civilization are separated by parsecs of chaos. There are 10 races. It uses a skill-based system (the "ROPE" system) with hundreds of skills. Character creation is point-based.
Familiars
1st ed by Andrea Sfiligoi (2007) Ganesha Games
A simple, fast fantasy RPG where the player characters are magical animals working for a powerful wizard. Character creation includes choosing from among 14 character types (cats, bats, dogs, magpies, ravens, doves, mice, shrews, lizards, homunculi, owls, rabbits, snakes and toads); and selecting from among 40 magical powers. The core book also contains an introductory adventure.
Fantasia
1st ed by Matt deMille (2001) New Dimension Games
Revised ed (2003)
A traditional fantasy RPG set in an typical medieval fantasy world populated by men, elves, dwarves, and halfmen. It has varying core mechanics. For example, some actions use stats + 1d20 vs Difficulty, while ability checks use stat + 1d6 vs a Difficulty of 10, 15, or 20. Character creation is class-based, with level-based advancement. Human characters have classes Barbarian, Cavalier, Charlatan, Cleric, Druid, Holy Man, Mystic, Necromancer, Nomad, Paladin, Ranger, Sorcerer, Thief, Viking, Warrior, Wizard or Woodsman. Elves have classes: Animist, Champion, Shadow, Strider or Swordmaster. Dwarves have classes: Elder, Glandran or Urudar. Halfmen have classes: Bard, Burglar, Highman, Scout or Sherriff. There is also a "Story Point" mechanic, with points given to the player which remains even if the character dies.
Fantasy Craft
1st ed by Alex Flagg, Scott Gearin, Patrick Kapera (2009) Crafty Games Studio 2 Publishing
A fantasy game derived from Spycraft 2.0, a variant of the D20 System used by third edition Dungeons & Dragons. It redefines core classes as assassin, burglar, courtier, captain, explorer, keeper, lancer, mage, priest, sage, scout, and soldier. Each class has a single "core ability," and characters select a talent (special ability) and specialty (extra feat) in addition to race and class. The combat uses a version of vitality and wound points, as well as Action Dice - which are used to confirm critical hits, activate special abilities, and boost die rolls.
Fantasy Earth
1st ed by Michael C. Zody (1995) Zody
A traditional fantasy-genre RPG, emphasizing realism. It uses a complex and somewhat math-intensive system. Skill rolls are skill + 1d10 vs difficulty, while combat uses 2d10. Character creation uses random-roll attributes (14 attributes rolled by 3d10/3) and classes (warrior, ranger, burglar, sorcerer, shaman, cleric) as modifiers to point-bought skills.
Fantasy Hero
1st ed by Steve Peterson (1985) Hero Games
4th ed by Rob Bell et al. (1990)
A generic fantasy-genre RPG using the 3rd edition Champions system. It includes the full powers meta-system, used for designing magic spells (including only a short list of 15 predesigned spells). No background is included, but it has a short introductory adventure. The newer Fantasy Hero book is a supplement for 4th edition HERO rather than a stand-alone game: it is 60% larger (256 pages) and includes no core rules.
Fantasy Imperium
1st ed by Mark O'Bannon (2006) Shadowstar Games
A fantasy RPG set in medieval Europe, in the default year 1121 A.D. It uses a percentile skill-based system (roll under stat or skill on 1d100).
Fantasy Legend
1st ed by William F. Lorenz, Mike Katzenberger (1998) Black Knight Games
A medieval fantasy-genre RPG and miniatures system. Advances for both miniatures and role-playing use "promotion points" based on accomplishments, used to buy advances. It is set on the world of Faldor, populated by ten races including Humans, Dwarves, Elves, and reptilian Gar, goblin-like N'Tak, orc-like N'Tal, rat-like Verminion, Sea Elves, and Skeletons. Resolution uses a single d10 roll, that are converted usinga universal chart to results. The miniature rules resolve in a single roll of for unit vs. unit. It includes a magic system with around 40 spells.
The Fantasy Trip
Melee ed by Steve Jackson, Howard Thomson (1977) Metagaming
Wizard ed (1978)
In The Labyrinth ed (1980)
This was originally a series of two compatible pocket-sized games of combat and dungeon exploration, only nominally role-playing. They are notable as precursors to Steve Jackson's GURPS and other games. Actions are resolved by rolling 3d6 under 1 of 3 attributes: Strength (ST), Dexterity (DX), and Intelligence (IQ). There are no skills in the basic game. Character creation is point-based: distribute 8 points to raise attributes above base. "Into the Labyrinth" adds advanced rules, including binary skills, more complex point-buy options, and an optional critical hit location chart for hit rolls of 3-7. The advanced system has two classes: hero and wizard, extended from the character generation in Melee and Wizard. There are also advanced rules for targeting specific locations, at a DX penalty.
Fantasy Wargaming
1st ed by Bruce Galloway, Mike Hodson-Smith, Nick Lowe, Bruce Quarrie, Paul Sturman (1982) Stein and Day
A medieval fantasy-genre RPG. Over half of the book is dedicated to describing the medieval period and folklore in great detail, and the rules reflect this. There is a lot of medieval authenticity, such as the importance put on astrology and the Christian church. The system is complex and table-driven, comparing stat+modifiers with a percentile roll for a result. There is no universal mechanic. Character creation is based on astrological sign and a random number of points. Each character has 3 experience levels: Combat, Religious, and Magical.
The Farm
1st ed by Jared A. Sorensen (2004) Memento Mori Theatricks
An electronically-published game "of hunger and horror", previewed in the Halloween 2004 issue of Daedalus magazine. The PCs were captured and brought to a place called only "The Farm" so they may eventually be slaughtered and eaten by a mysterious group of people called the Headmasters. They are trying to escape, obviously. It uses a simple dice-pool system which allows pooling and sharing of dice. There are two stats (Stamina and Psyche) which average 4 and determine the number of six-sided dice you roll. There are six skills, each of which has an individually-assigned number. Rolling a number of d6s equal to your stat, you get successes equal to those which roll exactly the assigned skill number. An assigned leader may be given dice, and hand out appropriate numbers to those who need them within certain limits. There are rules for strain and torture as well as combat.
Farscape
1st ed by Ken Carpenter, Keith R. A. DeCandido, Gavin Downing, Lee Hammock, Kelly Hill, Christina Kamnikar, Rob Vaux (2002) Alderac Entertainment Group
A spacefaring RPG based on the U.S. televisions series. The rules are a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. Complete rules are not provided: basic rules for character creation, combat, and advancement refer to the D&D Players Handbook.
Fastlane: Everything, All The Time
1st ed by Alexander Cherry (2004) Twisted Confessions
An RPG system based on the use of a roulette wheel (with an alternative mechanic using d6s). It has no setting, but rather a meta-genre. It is about characters prone to indulgence, consumption, diversion, and amusement. Players have a bank of casino chips which they bet on the wheel over conflicts. Winning not only lets you succeed in the conflict, but can allow you to narrate the results of your success by spending extra. Character creation is by design. Each character has five Facets: people, assets, nerve, guile, and sobriety. Each Facet also has a Style descriptor. In addition, characters have motivations and favors.
Fate of the Norns
1st ed by Andrew Valkauskas (1993) Pendelhaven
2nd ed (2002)
Ragnarok ed (2006)
A fantasy RPG set in viking history and mythology. The original system uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation includes 35 occupations. The third edition explicitly takes place during the final war between the gods and the giants, allowing players to play supernatural beings such as Einherjar and Valkyries. It replaces the mechanics with a system of drawing rune stones, the Runic Game System (RGS). Each characters has a set of runes they can draw from, and a number of runes they can draw.
Fates Worse than Death
1st ed by Brian St.Claire-King (2003) Vajra Enterprises
A post-apocalyptic/cyberpunk RPG, subtitled "Suspense Horror and Hope in 2080 on the streets of Manhattan". It is set on Manhattan island in 2080, which is largely deserted with 50,000 inhabitants. Gangs draw lines and protect their own, existing because besides welfare, there is little the government does to protect human rights. Most are afraid to venture to the streets, and live as shut ins, playing in VR rather than living. It uses a detailed skill-based system, the "Organic Rule Components" system. Character creation uses classes and limited point buy. In order, the players chooses personality traits and worldviews, splits 80 points between eight attributes, chooses from among 46 classes, and split 100 points among skills (with costs based on class). Action resolution is attribute + skill + 1d20 vs difficulty. It has a detailed combat system with maneuvers and three Health attributes: Blood, Body, and Incapacity.
Feng Shui
1st ed by Robin D. Laws (1996) Daedalus Games
2nd ed (1999) Atlas Games
A (mainly) modern-day action-movie genre game, taking after Hong Kong action films with wild martial arts, magic, and other strangeness. It uses a simple system of skill+1d6-1d6 vs difficulty. Combat is emphasized, which works on an action point (or "shot") system. Unusually, there are full character creation rules. Instead, there only are a set of tailorable archetypes which fit the genre.
Fiasco
1st ed by Jason Morningstar (2009) Bully Pulpit Games
A GM-less game of modern-day criminal action for 3-5 players, designed to be played in a few hours with no preparation. It is intended to emulate cinematic tales of small time capers gone disastrously wrong - inspired by films by the Coen brothers including Blood Simple, Fargo, Burn After Reading, and A Simple Plan along with others like The Way of the Gun. There are four settings: Main St (a nice southern town); Boomtown (a wild west mining); Tales From Suburbia (a suburban community); and The Ice (McMurdo Station, Antarctica). Each setting includes lists of Relationships, Needs, Objects, and Locations - in six categories with six elements. Each player brings 4 six-sided dice: two white and two black, which are pooled in the center of the table. The players take dice from the pool to define elements of their characters and to determine scene outcomes. On a player's turn, the player may decide to set up the scene (framing it), and let the group determine the outcome (good or bad), or the player can allow the group to frame the scene, and the player can determine the outcome.
Field Guide to Encounters
1st ed (1982) Judges Guild
A science fantasy RPG, using a class-based and level-based system similar to D&D, published as a two-book set. The first book covers character creation, which is mostly a huge list of classes and races. The second book is a collection of monsters. The options provided range from traditional fantasy to the bizarre (Attack Blink Cows, or the Acupuncturist class).
Fifth Cycle
1st ed by Robert Bartels (1990) Shield Laminating
A fantasy RPG set on the world of "Dolphinis", which is at a point in history where the long-lost art of magic is returning to the world. The first cycle was the era of creation. The second cycle was an era of magic. The third cycle was dominated by Tyrant Mages which created elves, dwarves, lizardmen, and dogmen along with subhumans including trolls and goblins. The fourth cycle was an era when all magic was shunned. The system handles character creation by selecting a profession and then picking skills within that profession. It includes a central magic system which is point-based. Reviewed in White Wolf #29.
Fighting Fantasy
Fighting Fantasy ed by Ian Livingstone, Steve Jackson (1984) Penguin Books
Dungeoneer ed by Marc Gascoigne, Pete Tamlyn (1989)
A traditional fantasy-genre wargame and RPG, published as a series of books aimed at beginners. It is primarily a solo adventure book series of fighting orcs, dragons, zombies, and vampires. The role-playing rules (i.e. guidelines for creating your own adventures) were in "Fighting Fantasy". This has 3 attributes: Skill, Stamina, and Luck. The rules were expanded in "Dungeoneer".
Note that this "Steve Jackson" (UK author) is unrelated to "Steve Jackson" (US author, head of Steve Jackson Games). cf. the official website.
The Final Girl
1st ed by Bret Billan (2012) Gas Mask Games
A horror movie mini-RPG meant to emulate movies where the characters are killed one by one until only one survivor remains to confront the killer. It is for 2 to 6 players, and a complete game lasts 1.5-2.5 hours. It suggests playing cards, index cards, and pencils as required materials.
Fireborn
1st ed by Rob Vaughn (2004) Fantasy Flight Games
A modern fantasy RPG set in the near-future where the PCs are human reincarnations of dragons. It is set about 10 years in the future in London, where over the past year magic has come out into public knowledge. It also supports flashback sequences to when the PCs were true dragons back during the mythic age. It uses a d6 dice pool system similar to Shadowrun.
A Fistful of Dice
1st ed by Judas I. Zeh (2002) Azathot LLC
A universal RPG system, using a dice pool system. Action resolution is by rolling d6's equal to your talent and comparing the total vs difficulty. There are modifiers in extra dice which are not kept (i.e. +2 modifier on 3d6 means roll 5d6 and keep the best 3).
Flash Gordon and the Warriors of Mongo
1st ed by Lin Carter, Scott Bizar (1977) FGU
A game which handles the Flash Gordon story as a sequence of programmed choices, similar to a "Choose-Your-Own-Adventure" book -- billed as a "game of schematic role-playing". Each player takes on the role of an Earthling who has landed by rocket on the planet Mongo, and attempts to be the first group to reach Mingo City and defeat Ming the Merciless. There is no GM. Instead, they consult the rulebook for description of the challenges faced at each region of Mongo: such as the Cave Kingdom, Frigia, or the Fiery Desert. Characters are defined by four attributes: Physical Strength and Stamina, Combat Skill, Charisma/Attractiveness, and Scientific Aptitude. Each is determined by rolling three "average dice" (six-sided dice with values 2,3,3,4,4,5).
Flashing Blades
1st ed by Mark Pettigrew (1984) FGU
A swashbuckling combat system and RPG, set in 17th century France: the time of the musketeers. It emphasizes both combat and social status. The duelling system is naturally rather complex and involved. Character creation is random-roll attributes and point-bought skills (modified by class: Rogue, Gentleman, Soldier, or Nobleman) and profession.
FlipQuest
Quest for the Princess' Crystal ed by Rolando Mei (2001) Shadowcraft Imaging Group
A collectible card game with some role-playing elements, where you build the game board as you play. There are square tiles for locations, characters, monsters, and treasure. It has some resolution using d6s.
A Flower for Mara
1st ed by Seth Ben-Ezra (2008) Dark Omen Games
A live-action improvisational game with pregenerated characters, billed as "an improvisational play about death, loss, grief, and hope." The player characters are family members grieving a relative, Mara, who just died suddenly and unexpectedly - and play proceeds in a number of scenes for each season of the year following her death. The game uses a Director/GM role as well as a special role for Mara's spirit, along with player roles for up to six of Mara's immediate family. Character creation includes picking one of six relationship types (devoted/ competitive/ respectful/ bitter/ subordinate/ detached), as well as picking a personal grief or regret of the player to bring into the game. The moment that a character lets go of their regret for Mara, the player gives an out-of-character soliloquy about that grief or regret while placing a flower on the grave. There are no numbers or mechanics for resolution, though there are rules for the bounds and requirements of scenes.
ForeSight
1st ed by Tonio Loewald (1986) self-published
A sci-fi RPG system. It uses a percentile system similar to James Bond 007. A simplified version of the original rules is now available free.
Forge: Out of Chaos
1st ed by Mark Kibbe (1998) Basement Games
A traditional fantasy-genre RPG, using a class and level-based system with skills.
Forgotten Futures
1st ed by Marcus L. Rowland (1999) Heliograph, Inc.
A Victorian adventure RPG based on early science fiction writings: not only Jules Verne, but also "forgotten" sci-fi works such s George Griffith and Rudyard Kiplings. This appeared as a shareware download on the Internet for several years, and later was published in print. Although the rules are cheaply downloadable, the core rulebook is 151 pages - illustrated with an index. It uses a rules-lite system with 3 attributes and broad skills. There are both printed and downloadable supplements on various early sci-fi works. cf. the official website.
The Forgotten Hunt
1st ed by John Josten (1996) Board Enterprises
A modern dinosaur-hunting RPG where living dinosaurs have been rediscovered. Modern scientists are racing to study the creatures, both in their native environments and in their labs, but hunters and adventurers are the main focus. It was apparently released in a Limited Edition as a three-ring binder at GenCon in 1996.
Forward... To Adventure!
1st ed by The RPG Pundit (2007) Flying Mice LLC
A medieval fantasy RPG focusing on tactical play in dungeons, drawing from the original Dungeons & Dragons game, as well as some derivatives like Nethack.
Fox Magic
1st ed by Christopher La Haise, Catherine Prickett, Lev Lafayette (2009) Fool's Moon Entertainment
A historical fantasy/horror game where the player characters are various breeds of kitsune - Japanese shapeshifting fox creatures. A character's number of tails indicates their relative success, experience, and ability. Character creation is limited point buy, with number of tails indicated number of attribute points and number of abilities picked. The four attributes are Cunning, Skill, Spirit and Wisdom. In the system, players take temporary control of the narrative until challenged by the GM or another player. Challenges are resolved by a d12 dice pool, rolling a number of d12s equal to the appropriate attribute modified by Opportunities, Complications, and Conditions. Any result of 7 or higher indicates general success, with degrees of success determined for each die. On failure, the challenger takes control ("Tempo"). The basic game includes a summary of Japanese geography, history, and culture - including details on mythology and other magical creatures.
Freaks and Friendlies
1st ed by Denton R. Elliot (1986) Doc's Games
A post-apocalyptic mini-RPG featuring the usual assortment of mutants and other beasts and includes rules covering both psionics and magic.
Freedom Fighters
1st ed by J. Andrew Keith (1986) FGU
A modern military RPG about guerillas taking back America from invaders, subtitled "North America Invaded!". The game presents two options: either Russian or space-alien invaders. The core rules are broken into two books: "The Character" (96 pp) and "The Resistance" (80 pp). The boxed set also includes a 32-page booklet of character creation charts & tables, screen, character sheet, a sample adventure called "The Errant Knight Gambit" (pamphlet 8 pp), Stan Johansen Miniatures (pamplet ad for miniatures), a pin with the Freedom Fighters logo.
FreeMarket
1st ed by Luke Crane, Jared Sorensen (2010) self-published
A transhumanist RPG set on a space station three and a half kilometers wide with a population just over eighty thousand. The PCs are members of MRCZs - ad hoc groups formed for specific purposes.
Frenzy
1st ed by William E. Worthey, Gregor Hutton, William E. Worthey (1995) Venture Press
A small-press universal role-playing and skirmish wargaming system. It included a sci-fi setting ("Stone Killers") and a modern US setting ("Crime Story"). It uses a special percentile system, the "Reverse Roll", where the ones die determines success, and the full percentile roll determines level of success. Character creation is limited point-based, with points for the six main attributes and separate points for the binary skills. The basic rulebook included two sample scenarios, one for each setting.
Fringeworthy
1st ed by Richard Tucholka (1981) Tri-Tac Games
2nd ed (1984)
3rd ed (1990)
A near-future interdimensional sci-fi RPG. In 2008 an interdimensional portal is found in Antartica, and U.N. teams are sent to explore these other dimensions -- consisting of those elite capable of crossing the interdimensional "fringes". It uses a variant of the Tri-Tac system: a percentile skill system. Character creation is random-roll attributes, skills are generated by assigning dice to them. Advancement is level-based, giving extra hit points and raising skills.
Frontier Zone
1st ed by Stuart Lynn Sexton (2006) self-published
A space-faring science fiction RPG, set in the 22nd century in the United Systems Alliance Frontier Zone. The Zone is only lightly patrolled by the United Systems Navy, whose seven fleets are spread very thinly. Rival powers include the Mordum Hegemony and the Shardon Empire. It uses a simple skill-based system. Resolution is based on 1d6 + skill versus difficulty, with die rolls open-ending on a "1" or a "6" result. Character creation is limited point-based, including choosing a race, modifying attributes by spending Bonus Points, and choosing up to three profession templates.
FSpace RPG
1st ed by Martin Rait (1991) FSpace Publications
KAPCON Edition ed (1995)
SpaceRPG Concise Rulebook v4.0 ed (2001)
SpaceRPG Concise Rulebook v4.2 ed (2008)
A space-opera RPG, in a background set in the late 22nd century, where humanity and others are defending themselves against the expansion of the Stotatl Empire and other menaces. The original edition was titled the "Federation Science Fiction Roleplaying Game Rulebook", later known as the "Fed RPG". The name was changed to FSpaceRPG since most testing players refered to the game as "FED Space". The concise rulebooks (v4.0 and v4.2) and a range of supplements are available in hardcopy, as ebooks or on CDROM.
FTL:2448
1st ed by Richard Tucholka (1982) Tri-Tac Games
2nd ed (1985)
3rd ed (1990)
A space-opera RPG, set in a far-flung alliance on the edge of war. On one side is the Hagonni Empire, on the other is humanity and its numerous allies (the "ISCO"). It includes 28 alien races plus humans, uplifted animals, and androids. The system is a fairly complex percentile skill system, based on Fringeworthy.
FTL Now
1st ed by clash bowley (2006) Flying Mice LLC
A modern-day sci-fi RPG made as a sequel to the Cold Space game. FTL Now is set between the end of the Soviet Union in 1990 and 2006. The background is a parallel history, including an attack on 9/11/2001 when terrorists directed a comet into New York City that resulted in an interstellar War on Terror.
FUDGE
1st ed by Steffan O'Sullivan (1995) Grey Ghost Press
Expanded Edition ed (2000)
10th Anniversary Edition ed (2005)
A free-form, generic, minimalist role-playing "engine". At times, this is intentionally more of a "how to design an RPG" guide than a pre-made game. There are no fixed attributes or skills, and multiple options are provided for almost everything. There are sample psionics, magic, and clerical magic systems provided with the core rules. The Expanded Edition provides a pre-determined fantasy role-playing game with fixed attributes, skills, and new magic system. The Anniversary Edition provides a host of other pre-made and/or optional systems: a new magic system ("Degrees of Magic"), superhero rules, cybernetics, netrunning, vehicles, dogfighting, detailed weapons, and two alternate martial arts systems.
Full Light Full Steam
1st ed by Joshua BishopRoby (2006) Kallisti Press
A steampunk RPG set in a parallel history where the solar system is being explored in Victorian times using spaceships with solar-powered steam engines and clockwork computers (analytic engines). All of Venus, Mars, Mercury, Vulcan, and the Belt include habitable areas. The British Astronomical Navy is the dominant military force in space, though many countries operate solar steamers. It uses a custom system. Resolution uses rolling 4d6 and taking higher or lower dice depending on the attribute level. There are six attributes (Acumen, Brawn, Coordination, Intellect, Leadership, and Savoir-Faire) and thirty skills. Characters also have "thematic batteries" - which are freeform player-chosen descriptors like "Competitive," "Gentleman," or "Inquisitive." A thematic battery can give a bonus to a related roll, but only if it has been charged by taking a voluntary penalty on a related roll. So a player can get benefit from "Competitive" only if they experienced problems from that earlier. There is also a system for tracking spotlight time in scenes by passing a note ("Scrip") that players write on when they have a scene - also used for experience.
Furry Outlaws
1st ed by Lise Breakey, Bruce Thomas (1994) Furry Games
An RPG set in an alternate 12th century England where anthropomorphic animals act the Robin Hood myth. It uses the "Halogen System" - a percentile skill-based system shared by the game Furry Pirates. The game includes a magic system as well as stats for key characters including Sir Guy of Gisbourne (a rottweiler), Richard Lionheart and Prince John (lions), The Sheriff of Nottingham (a boar), and the Bishop of Ely (a horse). The cover is a parody of the 1991 film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, with an anthropomorphic fox preparing to fire a flaming arrow.
Furry Pirates
1st ed by Lise Breakey, Bruce Thomas (1999) Atlas Games
An RPG of anthropomorphic animals sailing the high seas as pirates in a quasi-historical environment. It has an alternate history similar to our own, but with twists to suit the anthropomorphic animals and the dose of added magic. It uses the "Halogen" system, a percentile skill-based system. In combat, the attacker has a skill level which is added to the defender's skill level to generate a score which the attacker must beat (i.e. lower attack score is better).
The Future Belongs To Us
1st ed by Infinity (2013) Ataraxy Publishing
A sci-fi RPG set in a near future world in the year 2048, where all countries have been taken over by the UNE (United Nations of Earth). The tyrranical world government has instituted a single currency and a complete ban on firearms. The players are members of the Freedom Underground dedicated to destroying the UNE. Other groups include the Hardbodies (the top criminal gang), the Brotherhood (a conspiracy pulling strings in the government), and the Mystics (a new religion). It uses a skill-based system called the DiceLight system. Resolution uses 1d20, with all rolls by the player rather than the GM. Character creation is open point-based, spending 4000 points, with an option to use pre-created templates. Characters have seven attributes (Dexterity, Agility, Strength, Perception, Build, Ego, Stamina) along with a mix of knowledges, skills, and proficiencies. Ego and Stamina determine a character's points in Passion and Energy. Passion points can be spent to increase rolls, reroll failures, or revive from unconsciousness.
Future Worlds
1st ed by Patrick Lester (1987) Stellar Gaming Workhop
A spacefaring science fantasy RPG, set in the far future which has both an interstellar society and magic-using "Mystics".
Fuzion
1st ed by "The Fuzion group" (1997) R Talsorian
A universal system which fuses R Talsorian's "Interlock" system with Hero Games "HERO" system (from Champions). The core system is available for free download. It has not been released in print as a universal RPG, but the rules are included in numerous printed games including Champions: The New Millenium, Sengoku, and other games. It uses attribute + skill + 3d6 vs difficulty. Character creation is by limited point buy ("characteristic points", "option points", and "power points").
"Instant Fuzion" is a simplified version of the Fuzion system used by the Usagi Yojimbo and Dragonball Z games. cf the official website.
Fvlminata: Armed with Lightning
1st ed by Jason E. Roberts, Michael S. Miller (2001) Thyrsus
2nd ed (2002)
An RPG set in an alternate history where the Romans discovered gunpowder. It is set in AD 248. The divergence point is in AD 79 when Aufidius Caelus and Pliny the Younger survive the eruption of Pompeii by visiting the Misenum shore, and Caelus then devotes his life to pursuing the secret of volcanic power. It uses an original system which includes a magic system based on Roman superstition.
Gaesa
1st ed by Jonathan Lavallee (2010) Firestorm Ink
A GMless storytelling game about humans plagued by Faeries, with no defined human setting - ranging from traditonal fairy tales to modern-day urban fantasy and beyond. Each player creates a human and also a Fae, and each player's Fae must connect to another player's human. Play proceeds in scenes, where there is a defined spotlight character whose success in the scene is determined by bidding dice (d6s). Players spend dice to get what they want, and get dice by giving control to the Fae (aka "geis"). Geis are phrased as compulsions and abstentions that the character must follow. Human character creation is by defining four Elements (Head, Heart, Life, and Loins), at least 2 Goals, and 6 Supports (i.e. things important to the character). Fae creation is by answering three questions: "Who are you?", "What do you want?" and "What makes you weak?"
Gamers
1st ed by Kyle Schuant (2013) Better Mousetrap Games
A generic/universal system, drawing on the basic mechanics of the original Traveller RPG. Resolution is by rolling 2d6 against a target number, modified by skill (rated +0 to +6). Character creation is by random-roll attributes and skills. The six attributes are rated 2-12 (marked in hexadecimal as in Traveller): Grit, Awareness, Mind, Endurance, Reflexes, Strength.
Gamma World
1st ed by James M. Ward, Gary Jaquet (1978) TSR
2nd ed by James M. Ward, James Ritchie, Gary Jaquet (1983)
3rd ed (1986)
4th ed by Bruce Nesmith, James M. Ward (1992)
D&D ed by Richard Baker, Bruce R. Cordell (2010)
A strange post-nuclear-apocalypse sci-fi game where mutants (both human and animal) and ultra-tech gadgets abound. It uses a system similar to AD&D, with 1d20 roll under a chart result for combat, and percentile rolls against attribute*factor. Character creation is random-roll attributes and mutations (there are no skills). The 3rd edition used an unrelated set of mechanics, similar to Marvel Superheroes, but this was abandoned for 4th edition. A Gamma World supplement was later published for the Alternity system. In 2010, a standalone game was published using the 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons rules, entitled the "D&D Gamma World Roleplaying Game."
Ganakagok: A Mythopoetic Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Bill White (2009) Consensus Games
A fantasy RPG inspired by Inuit mythology, where the player characters are members of a tribe that lives on an island of ice in an eternally dark world. Play centers on how the tribe deals with the coming of the first Dawn and the changes it brings. Play involves the use of a special deck of tarot-like cards to generate situation, prompt narration, and inspire characters.
Gangbusters
1st ed by Mark Acres, Rick Krebs, Tom Moldvay (1982) TSR
3rd ed by Scott Haring (1990)
A police/gangster RPG set in the "Roaring '20s", with characters as private eyes, city cops, prohibition agents, reporters, or gangsters. The game encouraged players to pursue their individual goals rather than operate as a unified party. For example, a gangster character's goal might be to hold up a bank, while a policeman character would try to stop him -- and a journalist might tag along with the cop to cover the story, but wouldn't want to interfere either way. There were five 32-page adventure modules published from 1982-1984: "Trouble Brewing" (fictional 'Lakefront City' setting), "Murder in Harmony" by Mark Acres (a murder whodunnit set at a high-class party), "Death on the Docks" by Mark Acres (gang war over control of the Lakefront CIty dockworker's union) "The Vanishing Investigator" (protecting a witness in a trial involving organized crime), and "Death in Spades" by Tracy Raye Hickman (a murder mystery with a random plot and ending based on draws from a deck of cards).
Gangster!
1st ed by Nick Marinacci, Pete Petrone (1979) FGU
An organized crime RPG covering from 1900 to the present, which allows both criminal and police PC's. It is co-designed by a former New York policeman, and includes details on criminals, forensics, legal issues, etc. The system is skill-based, with six attributes and lists of various police and criminal skills. The combat system uses multiple tables.
Gardasiyal
1st ed by M.A.R. Barker, Neil R. Cauley (1995) TOME
A non-traditional fantasy game set on a unique alien world called "Tekumel", with strong Hindu and Aztec flavor rather than European. The setting was previously published in two games, Empire of the Petal Throne (1975) and the imcomplete Swords & Glory (1983). In this game, the rules were wholly rewritten by Neil Cauley. It uses a percentile system where the base chance of success is 70% and the die roll is modified by (+difficulty) and (-skill). There is also another game set in the same world published by Guardians of Order in 2005, Tekumel.
Gatecrasher
1st ed by Michael W. Lucas, N. Taylor Blanchard (1993) Grey Ghost Press
2nd ed (1996)
A light-hearted science fantasy RPG, in a world where a 22nd-century prospector discovered an ancient transdimensional gate on one of Jupiter's moons, and let Magic back into the world, including dragons, angels, demons, elves, dwarves, etc. The 1st edition has its own rules, while the 2nd edition uses FUDGE rules as a base, with considerable world-specific character creation rules.
GateWar: Believable Fantasy Role-Playing in the World of Vinya
1st ed by Kenneth Burridge, Robert Finkbeiner, Kevin Nelson, Brian Pettitt (1994) Escape Ventures, Inc.
A fantasy-genre RPG set in the world of Vinya, first introduced in Element Masters. The genre is traditional fantasy with a myriad of strange monsters, more light-hearted than "dark". It uses a percentile skill system: roll under skill times difficulty multiplier on percentile dice. Results are often table-driven, including specific hitpoint tables included for each creature type. Character creation is random-roll attributes and point-bought skills.
Gear Krieg RPG
1st ed by James Maliszewski, Gene Marcil, Stéphane I. Matis, Marc-Alexandre Vézina (2001) Dream Pod 9
A two-fisted pulp action RPG, set in an alternate history's 1941 where weird Nazi science has produced walking tanks and other oddities. It uses a more pulp-oriented variant of the "Silhouette" system: a simple dice pool system: roll dice (d6's) equal to skill and take the best, and add attribute (-3 to +3).
Geiger Counter: Cooperative Survival Horror
Beta ed by Jonathan Walton (2008) Bleeding Play
A GMless cooperative survival horror RPG designed to emulate movies in which most of the main characters eventually die such as Alien or Scream, and perform well in single-session play. It is recommended for 5-7 players. It uses a narrative-focused d6 dice pool system, where there is a pool of dice for all the players and for each character, and one pool associated with the Menace (i.e. the defined threat central to the movie).
Gemini RPG
1st ed by Johan Sjoberg (1999) Cell Entertainment
A dark fantasy-genre RPG, originally Swedish-language but also published in English. It is set in a medieval fantasy world where an ancient darkness threatens the land. The world features elven, dwarven, and human kingdoms along with an alternate Church, complete with Knights Templar. cf. the Gemini intro page.
Genesis RPG
1st ed by Kevin D. Clarke, Noel W. Clarke (1986) Inkeptum Ultra Visio
2nd ed (1990)
A space-faring science fiction RPG, from a small Canadian press. It is set in 2139, and the Earth has discovered and been discovered by ten alien races, including some with psionic powers. The history includes megacorps who ruled the Earth, first contact of Earth by an alien race, and the struggles for establishing a Polysolar Foundation. The PCs may be any of the ten races, and select an occupation in addition: including Pirates, Explorers, Investigators, Traders, etc. The game was published in two books, called the "Caudex Regulum" (Book of Rules) and "Caudex Centia" (Book of Data). The rules for most of the systems allow the players to select from three levels of complexity - ranging from a single die role to damage system tables calculated logarithmically.
Ghostbusters
1st ed by Sandy Petersen, Lynn Willis, Greg Stafford (1986) West End Games
Ghostbusters, International ed by Aaron Allston, Douglas Kaufman (1989)
A simple RPG based on the movies, designed to be extremely easy for beginners. The mechanic is a simple D6 dice pool (the "D6" system later used in Star Wars), based on one of four attributes: Muscle, Brains, Moves, and Cool. Each character can have at most four skills: one per attribute. Action resolution is to roll a number of dice equal to attribute (2 to 6), with one die being a special "ghost die" whose "1" face indicates a fumble. If the number is greater than difficulty, you succeed. Results can modified by spending "Brownie Points" to reduce damage or improve rolls. In the original game, characters get three pieces of equipment which are detailed on cards. The International edition has no cards but has a longer list of equipment rated for size in "hands" (i.e. number of hands to hold). The original basic set included advice on straightforward ghostbusting adventures, including a two-page sample adventure about a taxi cab possessed by the ghost of a gigantic dog.
Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai
1st ed by David L. Pulver, John R. Phythyon, Jr. (2000) Guardians of Order
A modern-day action RPG based on the film by Jim Jarmusch about a mafia hit man who lives by the ancient samurai code. The RPG focuses on one-player campaigns. It uses the Tri-Stat system from Big Eyes, Small Mouth.
Ghostories: Supernatural Mystery Roleplaying
1st ed by Brett Bernstein (2008) Precis Intermedia Games
A modern-day investigative game, using a variant of genreDiversion system also used by Coyote Trail.
The Gifted
1st ed by David Wood, David Wilson, Michael Fahey (1993) Dark Arts Games
A sci-fi RPG of psychic powers in a dark version of the modern world. The player characters are outcasts in a world that is paranoid of their psychic gifts. There is no organization for them, and they are constantly on the run to survive.
Gloire: Swashbuckling Adventure in the Age of Kings
1st ed by Pete Murray (2006) Rattrap Productions
A swashbuckling tabletop miniatures game with some role-playing aspects, based on the .45 Adventure system.
Godlike: Superhero Roleplaying in a World on Fire, 1936-1946
1st ed by Dennis Detwiller, Greg Stolze (2002) Hobgoblynn Press
A superhero RPG set in the era of World War II. The PC's are Allied paranormal "Talents" with superhuman abilities who aid in the war effort. While Talents are definitely superhuman, it is more gritty than four-color superheroic. The PC's can still die, and they have little effect on the war as a whole. It uses a dice-pool system, known as the "One-Roll Engine". Actions are resolved by rolling d10's equal to stat plus skill. The number of matches (i.e. d10's with the same value) indicate speed of success, while the number matched indicates quality of success. Development and supplements to the system were taken over by Arc Dream Publishing in late 2002.
Godsend Agenda
1st ed by Jerry D. Grayson, Brian Vinson, Kimara Bernard, Matt Drake (2001) Khepera
D6 Edition ed by Jerry D. Grayson, Paul Tomes, Brian Vinson, Mike Fiegel, Matt B. Carter, Darren Miguez (2005) Khepera
A superhero RPG set in an alternate history where superheroes from another dimension walk among us after accidentally crash-landing on Earth. Some are government agents, some are costumed vigilantes, and others were considered gods in bygone days. They fight for and against many different factions but all have one goal; to stop the coming apocalypse foretold of many centuries ago. It uses a simple system, with action resolution based on 2d6 + attribute + skill vs difficulty. A later edition was published using West End Games' D6 System.
Golden Heroes
1st ed by Simon Burley, Peter Hains (1984) Games Workshop
A superhero RPG. It uses a fairly simple system. Character creation is fast, and either custom-design or random-roll (including random-roll powers). Combat uses a simple action-point system, where PC's and villians have 4 "frames" (as in comic-book frames) per round.
GORE - Generic Old-school Role-playing Engine
1st ed by Daniel Proctor (2007) Goblinoid Games
A generic RPG system book with a horror theme, using rules adapted from Basic Role-playing and the Call of Cthulhu game. These are published based on the related RuneQuest rules released under the Wizards of the Coast Open Gaming License.
Götterdämmerung
1st ed by Anders Jacobsson, Magnus Malmberg, Theodore Berqquist (2005) Riotminds
A mystery game set in the 18th century, inspired by "The Brotherhood of Wolves", "Vidoqc" and "Sleepy Hollow". There are many secret societies, and dark forces never spoken about. The core game consists of two books: Lex Libris and Codex Persona. It uses a percentile skill-based system based on Chaosium's Basic Role-playing.
The Great War of Magellan RPG
1st ed by Richard Hatch, Jonathan Bjork (2007) DGA Games
A space-faring science fiction RPG based on the comic book series of the same name. It is set in the Magellan Nebula, where a human civilization originating in the planet Kyron had established an interstellar confederation with nine governorships. Humanity was devastated by civil war and the post-war chaos, and evil alien spirit guides called the Nephilim that have turned species into war-mongering horrors including the Kitaan and the Dru-ack. It uses an original system where you roll 1d20, trying to get under attribute + skill but over difficulty. A second 1d20 determines special results.
Grey Ranks
1st ed by Jason Morningstar (2007) Bully Pulpit Games
A historical RPG set in Poland in 1944, where the PCs are teenager soldiers who join the Warsaw Uprising. The game has a pre-determined scene structure where each scene has a specific date.
Grimm: Adventures in a world of twisted fairy tales
1st ed by Robert J. Shwalb (2008) Fantasy Flight Games
A fantasy RPG system in the genre of fairy tales, specifically the Grimm brothers tales but also others. It is set in a fantasy world called the Grimm Lands, where a mysterious entity called Melusine has made their stories real. This was first published as a setting for use with Dungeons & Dragons (the D20 system) in 2003, but was released with its own rules system in 2008.
GruntBuggler!
1st ed by Mark Kibbe (1995) Basement Games
A fantasy-genre RPG system, a predecessor to Forge: Out of Chaos.
Guardians
1st ed by James Perham, Gideon (1991) StarChilde
A generic superhero RPG, available as the core rulebook or in a boxed set with one supplement ("Freedom Union") and a few character sheets. The core rulebook has no background setting but includes a sample adventure. It uses the same basic rules system as the Justifiers system. Resolution is by percentile skill rolls. Character creation has a random number of points for attributes (with a set minimum), and randomly determining the number and category of powers.
Guardians of Sol
1st ed by Joseph Hillmer, George Rahm (1992) Better Games
A sci-fi police investigator mini-RPG, published in Space Gamer magazine, issue #5. It is based on the RPG Era Ten.
Guardian Universe Core Fuzion
1st ed by J. Parker, Jason Libby (2005) Dilly Green Bean Games
A dark superhero RPG, set in 1999 of the modern world where superheroes (known as "guardians") have been around for twenty eight years, only to encounter angels come to Earth to purge the superhuman phenomenon. It uses a variant of the Fuzion system originally from R. Talsorian Games. It includes new superpowers and psionics, character templates, gadgets, and other expansions.
Gunslingers & Gamblers
1st ed by Jonathan Clarke (2006) FJ Gaming
A game set around 1876 in the American wild west. It uses a dice pool system based on rolling six-sided "poker dice" (marked 9 through ace). Traits are rated 1 to 5 and 5/1 to 5/5. Resolution is by rolling five poker dice and attempting to make the best poker hand. You may then re-roll a number of dice equal to your first trait number. If you have 5/1 to 5/5, you may then re-roll again a number equal to your second trait number. There are 15 traits (i.e. stats), plus quirks. Quirks are each combined advantages and disadvantages that balance, with 72 defined in the base game.
Gun Thief: a messy game about desperate people and violent situations
1st ed by Joe McDonald (2010) Buried Without Ceremony
A diceless storytelling game for 3-4 players of modern criminal violence, intended for one hour of play. There are three defined roles: the Gun Thief, the Law, and the Jagged Women.
GURPS
1st ed by Steve Jackson (1986) Steve Jackson Games
2nd ed (1987)
3rd ed (1988)
4th ed (2004)
"Generic Universal Role-Playing System" A universal system that focuses on realism, notable especially for its continuing line worldbooks and sourcebooks, which now number in the hundreds. It uses a skill-based system: roll 3d6 under 1 of 4 attributes, or under skill. Character creation is open point-bought with many options. The "Basic Set" includes a default magic system and psionic system.
G x B (Girl X Boy)
1st ed by Jake Richmond, Heather Aplington (2011) Atarashi Games Cel*Style
A dating sim and role-playing game for 4 players based on the Japanese shoujo dating genre. It is based around a particular story - a shy freshman student named Momoko trying to decide between her three crushes: Ichigo, Takamichi, and Risa. Each player picks one of the four characters, then the three suitors take turns asking Momoko on dates. The suitor plans three activity, then the players of the other suitors help narrate what happens. The player of Momoko passes cards to other players according to rules to show favor to them.
Hackmaster
4th ed by Jolly Blackburn (2001) Kenzer & Company
5th ed (2009)
A humorous RPG based on the comic strip "Knights of the Dinner Table". It uses a licensed variant of the 1st edition AD&D system, which adds on a set of more complex rules. Additional rules include an honor system, critical hits, and a percentile skill system. There is a character build point system, where points can buy skills, advantages, attributes, or starting money. The original edition was numbered "4th" because that was how it was referred to in the comic, and the following edition became "5th."
Hahlmabrea
1st ed by Daniel A. Fox (1991) Sutton Hoo Games
A small-press fantasy-genre RPG about professional adventurers hired by a Council City. It formalizes "adventurer" status as a special profession within the city. The system uses mainly percentiles but also a mix of d8, d12, etc. Character creation is by random-roll attributes and selection of profession packages (which provide skills with random levels). Reviewed in White Wolf #29.
The Hammer of Thor: The Game of Norse Mythology
1st ed by Joe Angiolillo (1980) Gameshop
A boardgame with some RPG-like elements, where you play one of 365 characters from Norse mythology (each with a character card). It includes a game board with stars and circles connected by lines, representing places in Alfheim, Vanaheim, Valhalla, Midgard, and so forth. Play evolves along two phases: adventures in the wilderness to gather forces for Ragnarok, the final battle between good and evil. The player who is on the winning side of this battle who has the highest Reputation wins the game. In addition to the character cards, there are card sets representing Offspring, Shape Changing, Magic Items, Forged Magic Items, Fates, Runes, and Predictions. There is also a color map, sheets of charts, sheets for character tracking, counters and a rulebook. cf. http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/3867.
Happy Birthday, Robot!
1st ed by Daniel Solis (2010) Evil Hat Productions Smart Play Games
A storytelling party game appropriate for children. Each player takes turns starting a sentence to the story, using a limited number of words based on a die roll and passed coins. Every story starts with the same first sentence: "Happy Birthday, Robot!" On a player's turn, they roll up to three dice to roll using d6s where 1-2 is "AND", 3-4 is "BUT", and 5-6 is blank. The player keeps blank dice, passes BUTs to the left and ANDs to the right. The player can continue to roll until either neighbor has four dice. The player then writes a sentence where each die is a word, and the word "Robot" can be used once for free. Then the right neighbor can add words equal to his dice using "and" once for free; and the left neighbor can add words equal to his dice using "but" once for free. The storyteller player collects coins (heads up) for each blank die used. A heads-up coin can be passed to another player to be used as an extra word in a sentence, turned tails-up. The game ends when a player has ten or more coins and there is the epilogue. The rulebook includes optional rules as well as a number of sample stories written by playtesters.
Harc és Varázslat
1st ed by Tamás Galgóczi, Péter László (1991) Sportorg LLC
A light-hearted Hungarian-language fantasy RPG, whose title translates as "Combat and Magic" -- one of the first RPGs to be published in Hungarian. It is set in a medieval fantasy world, "Dragonfire", in roughly the genre of J.R.R. Tolkien, R.E. Howard, and fairy tales. The simple rules are similar to Basic Dungeons & Dragons. Character creation includes choosing a race (where choices include goblins and orcs) and one of four classes (fighter, ranger, priest and wizard). Character attributes are percentile ratings that increase with level. Unlike D&D, magic is based on a simple spell point system.
HardNova ][: Space Action Adventures
1st ed by Brett M. Bernstein, Matt Drake (2004) Politically Incorrect Games
A space opera RPG using a variant of the genreDiversion system also used by Coyote Trail. This is the more rules-lite retake on the earlier HardNova game. It is set in the United Sovereign Worlds (USU), with humans, human-like Centaurians, insectoid Kt'sorii, ape-like Digronians, the unsightly Migado (obese with redundant organs). In addition, there are the mutated Tarkosians, now dependent on nano-symbionts and grudgingly accepted into the USU after earlier hostilities. Action resolution is by rolling under attribute + skill on 2d6, with a possible bonus die (lowest 2 out of 3d6) or penalty die (highest 2 out of 3d6). There is also an advanced system with graded difficulties. Character creation is limited point-based, spending 10 points on five attributes ranging from 1 to 5 (Fitness, Awareness, Reasoning, Creativity, and Influence); 30 points on broad skills; and selected Gimmicks (i.e. ads and disads). It includes simple rules for combat, with 5 wound levels in two types (Injury or Fatigue). Ship combat is handled using a variant of the personal combat rules, with ships having stats and wound levels just like characters.
HârnMaster
1st ed by N. Robin Crossby (1986) Columbia Games
Core ed (1996) Columbia Games
Gold ed (1999) self-published
3rd ed (2003) Columbia Games
A medieval fantasy-genre RPG set in the original game-world Harn. Harn is a beautifully and extensively detailed world based on medieval England with a Tolkien-esque style. It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation uses random-roll attributes and background, including details of family and social role. Skills are based on a package for background, a package for the selected profession, and five option points. Combat is very detailed, including 38 hit locations and graphic injuries with different effects depending on type. "Harnmaster Gold" is a divergent second edition by original author Robin Crosby, which will be converted into expansions to the core rules. It includes an optional point-bought character creation system.
HARP (High Adventure Role Playing)
1st ed by Tim Dugger, Heike Kubasch (2003) Iron Crown Enterprises
A generic fantasy genre RPG, using an evolved and simplified version of the Rolemaster mechanics. It uses stat plus an open-ended percentile die roll, with result determining degree of success (where totals over 100 are a success). Character creation is class-based, with nine classes (Cleric, Fighter, Harper, Mage, Monk, Ranger, Rogue, Thief, and Warrior Mage). Skills are divided into four categories: Combat, Outdoor, Subterfuge, and Mystic Arts. Race is also a factor -- the core rulebook includes Human, Dwarf, Elf, Gnome, Halfling, and Gryx (a strong but peaceful orc-like humanoid). A culture is selected separately from race, such as "Nomad" or "Underhill". Advancement is level-based.
Haven: City of Violence
1st ed by Louis Porter, Jr. (2002) LPJ Design
A modern crime and crime-fighting RPG set in a fictional city ("Haven") on the eastern coast of the United States. Action resolution uses rolling under attribute or skill on 1d20. Character creation is skill-based including templates for various professions.
Havoc! Live Role-Playing
1st ed by Clinton J. Staples, Wendy Speary (1997) Seventh Moon
A live-action fantasy-genre RPG system, printed in digest format. It has rules both for "boffer" combat with mock weapons and "static" no-touch combat.
Hawkmoon
1st ed by Kerie Campbell-Robson, Sandy Petersen (1986) Chaosium
1st ed by Gareth Hanrahan (2007) Mongoose Publishing
A post-apocalyptic medieval science fantasy RPG, based on the Michael Moorcock's "Hawkmoon" novels. It uses a variant of Chaosium's Basic Role-playing system. The second edition used a variant of the RuneQuest system developed by Mongoose Publishing.
HeartQuest
1st ed by Michael Hopcroft, Robert Pool, Dimitri Ashling, Ewen Cluney, Robert Boyd, Robert Bain, Ismael Alvarez, Travis Johnson (2002) Seraphim Guard
An RPG in the genre of shoujo manga and anime -- i.e. Japanese girl's comics and animated shows. The game describes sub-genres of high-school romance, "magical girl" (superheroic), and otherworldly adventure. It uses a variant of the FUDGE system.
Hearts and Souls
1st ed by Tim Kirk (2006) Better Mousetrap Games Silver Lion Studios
A superhero RPG with a simple narratively-focused system. Each character has a single motivation, systematized as "Drive", such as "Love", "Guilt", or "Spirit of Adventure". Players use Drive to gain a reroll by either improvising a monologue, or accepting Stress points. Once Stress maxes out, though, there are required failures. There are six attributes: Might, Deftness, Resilience, Brains, Prowess, and Resolve. Each attributed has a rank (Human/d4, Superhuman/d8, and Cosmic/d12) and scale (Ordinary, Extraordinary, Spectacular). The core book includes two sample settings. The main one is "Analog Prime", where the world's greatest superhero team were just wiped out in an explosion. The minor one, "Millenia", has reality slowly shifting over time.
Heaven and Earth
1st ed by John R. Phythyon, Jr. (1998) Event Horizon Productions
2nd ed (2001) Guardians of Order
3rd ed by Lee Foster, Michelle Lyons, James Maliszewski, John R. Phythyon, Jr., Lucien Soulban (2004) Abstract Nova Entertainment
A modern-day occult RPG, inspired by surreal TV series like "Twin Peaks", "The Outer Limits", and "Millenium". It is set in the quiet town of Potter's Lake, Kansas -- home to an Air Force base that hosts a "Project Grayscale" and many other odd denizens. There is a deep underlying secret outlined in the book. The first edition game uses a diceless system based on playing cards, where you first compared attribute plus skill vs task difficulty. If greater, you succeed automatically, but otherwise you draw a playing card. If it is a number card less than your total you add +1, and if it is a face card there are special results. Character creation is limited point-based: distribute 30 points among 12 attributes, and 30 points among skills and advantages. The second edition uses the "Tri-Stat" system from Big Eyes, Small Mouth. The third edition uses a step die system, where you add attribute number plus skill number plus a die roll versus a fixed difficulty of 9. The die rolled varies with difficulty, from a d20 for easy tasks to a d4 for nearly impossible ones. Third edition character creation is limited point-based, with 14 attribute points and 9 occupation points. Occupations vary in cost based on breadth, and have three ranks (Rookie, Professional, and Veteran).
Heavy Gear
1st ed by Jean Carrieres, Gene Marcil, Martin Quellette, Marc-Alexandre Vézina (1996) Dream Pod 9
2nd ed (1997)
3rd ed (2004)
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG and tactical miniatures game, set in 6132 on "Terra Nova", the first colony planet outside the solar system which was abandoned by Earth due to domestic strife. Terra Nova is split between the North and South factions which are on the edge of war. The factions briefly dropped their differences to repel an invasion from Earth, but are now again on the edge of war. "Gears" are human-shaped combat mecha about 4-5 meters tall. It uses the "Silhouette" system: a simple dice pool system: roll dice (d6's) equal to skill and take the best, and add attribute (-3 to +3).
Heimot
1st ed by Miska Fredman (2006) Ironspine Games
A Finnish-language "space noir" science fiction RPG, whose title translates as "Tribes". Heimot is set in far future 500 years after a great disaster decimated and divided humanity. At present known space is ruled by the nine tribes of humanity. Outer worlds are populated by the barbaric outlanders and aliens. Characters are by default outlawed "clanless" humans who live outside the tribal society, though tribal humans are available as options. Aliens species exist, but are only NPCs. The rules mechanics use 1d10 + Aptitude + Skill versus a Difficulty number or competing result. Character creation and advancement is point based.
Helix: The Post Apocalypse, High-Tech, Fantasy, Western Role Playing Game
1st ed by Adam J. Weber, Gloria Weber, William Parker (2008) self-published
A post-apocalyptic RPG set in the year 2081 after global war has devastated the world, and subsequently magic has been re-awakened. The world has broken down into city-states connected by the powerful Umbrea Corporation, and the Wastelands in between. Player character options include Cyber Mystics, Code Slingers, Gun Jacks/Jills, and Average Joe/Plain Jane. The game is self-published by Adam Weber, with information at helixrpg.wordpress.com.
Hellas: Worlds of Sun and Stone
1st ed by Michael L. Fiegel, Jerry D. Grayson (2008) Aethereal Forge Khepera Publishing
An epic space opera game, in a setting inspired by Greek myth -- where spaceships travel through another dimension called the Panthalassa or "Slipspace", deploying aetheric force screen emitters on cables to act as sails that pull them. It is inhabited by a variety of races, including the Nymphas, Myrmidon Goregon, and Zintar as well as humans ("Hellene"). It uses a version of the "Omni System" from High Medieval, licensed from Morrigan Press. Action resolution uses skill or attribute minus difficulty + 1d20, interpreting the results on a universal degree of success table. There is also a hero point system to change rolls.
Hellboy RPG and Sourcebook
1st ed by Phil Masters, Jonathan Woodward (2002) Steve Jackson Games
A modern-day magic RPG based on the comic series by Mike Mignola, about solving occult mysteries, beating up demons, and saving the world from Things Man Was Not Meant to Know. It uses a version of the GURPS system which is included in the basic rulebook. The PC's can be characters from the comics, or may create their own agents of the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense.
Hellcats and Hockeysticks: A Role-Playing Game of chaos, anarchy, and decidedly unladylike behavior
1st ed by Andrew Peregrine (2009) Corone Design
A modern-day RPG set in a fictional English boarding school for girls, St. Erisian's - complete with magic and weird science. Adventures focus on the girls pulling off schemes, plans, and capers - inspired by the St. Trinian's series of films. Characters come from one of nine cliques, each with its own special ability and selection of skills - Coquette, Emo/Goth, Exchange Student, Fixer, Hockey Girl, Nerd/Geek, Prefect, Scientist, and Sweetheart. Character creation is point-based, selecting a clique, spending 5 points on clique skills and 15 points on any skills, choosing a Best Friend and Rival from among the other player characters, and an optional Personality Trait. Resolution uses a target number dice pool mechanic, rolling d6s equal to 1 plus skill, where every result of the target number or more is one success. Characters begin with 10 Willpower Points which can be traded in for extra dice. The system has a very nonlethal physical combat system as well as social combat rules.
Hell for Leather: Gameshow Hyperviolence
1st ed by Sebastian Hickey (2010) Cobweb Games
A storytelling game about a deadly gameshow where the contestants are hunted down across the world, though the game discusses alternate settings as long as the main characters are being hunted down by an overwhelmingly powerful adversary. It uses a GMless system that requires no preparation, intended for play in 2-4 hours. Resolution involves a diceless story pip system, and a challenge system of rolling a d10 into a circle where 3 six-sided dice are stacked, trying to get the d10 into the circle without knocking over the stack.
Hercules and Xena
1st ed by George Strayton et al. (1998) West End Games
A fantasy-genre RPG based on the two TV series. It uses a fast dice-pool system (the "D6 Prime" system), with special dice (included in the game) marked only success and failure. Roll dice equal to your skill and count the results.
Heroes
1st ed by Dave Millard (1979) Tabletop Games
A medieval fantasy RPG, set in Dark Ages Europe. It uses a mostly percentile system. Characters are defined by their country, social status, alignment, and five attributes (Strength, Agility, Intelligence, Charisma, and a Combat Value). The system is fairly detailed with the exception of combat.
Heroes and Hellions
1st ed by T. Dorsey (unknown, pre-1998) Travell Games
A small-press comic-book superhero RPG. It uses class-based character creation with 31 classes of superheroes. The combat system is involved, including special rules for critical hits and knockouts.
Heroes and Heroines
1st ed by James E. Freel (1993) Excel Marketing
A superhero RPG, which licensed characters from several comic companies including Image, Malibu, and Continuity. Character creation is point-based, including a long list of powers and weaknesses. Combat is resolved by cross-referencing a d20 roll on a universal table. The basic game includes no background, but has a short sample adventure. It has one sourcebook: "The Maxx", an adaptation of the independent comic of the same name.
Heroes Forever
1st ed (2001) Guild of Blades
A superhero RPG set in an alternate history where the world is carved into numerous empires by superbeings. It features a high-power system. Character creation includes kits, with Vampire, Werewolf, Mutant, Sorcerer, and Policeman kits included in the core rules.
Heroes of Olympus
1st ed by B. Dennis Sustare (1981) Task Force Games
2nd ed (1983)
A Greek-myth game which acts as an RPG, a wargame, and/or a boardgame. It includes background on gods, limited magic (from gods or magic places), sample races, and pregen characters from the Argonauts. It uses a skill-based system, with point-bought character creation. There are three combat systems: Noble (i.e. duelling), Melee, and Naval. They are fairly complex, although Melee is fairly fast.
Heroes Unlimited
1st ed by Kevin Siembieda (1984) Palladium Books
2nd ed (2000)
A fairly gritty "street-level" superhero RPG, using a variant of the Palladium System. Character creation is random-roll attributes with classes and levels. Some classes get random powers, while tech-based classes buy their cyberware/robotics/equipment with a pool of money.
Heroic Conquest
1st ed by David E. Blake (unknown, post 1990) Renaissance Ink
A superhero RPG. It uses a primarily percentile based system. Character creation is either point-bought or random-roll.
Heroic Do-Gooders and Dastardly Deed-Doers
1st ed by Mathew Van Dinter (1999) self-published
An RPG in a modern-day setting with pseudo-science and super-human powers. It is more of an action/adventure genre with powers, however, rather than mainstream comic-book superheroes. The setting is the real world complete with all normal features.
Heroic Visions
1st ed by William A Council (2002) New Vision Comics
A superhero RPG. The rules are a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D.
Hero Kids: A Fantasy Role-Playing Game for Children Aged 4 to 10
1st ed by Justin Halliday (2012) Hero Forge Games
A simple fantasy RPG intended for young players. Action resolution uses highest die from 1d6 to 3d6, compared with opposing roll. There is a simple rule for fighting, with three hits per character. Character creation is by picking a pre-built template, including Warrior, Hunter, Healer, Warlock, Brute, Rogue, and Knight. There are guidelines for creating new templates, but not complete rules. The core game includes a 19-page adventure, Basement o' Rats, featuring lots of fighting giant rats.
HeroQuest
1st ed by Greg Stafford, Robin D. Laws (2003) Issaries, Inc. Steve Jackson Games
2nd ed by Greg Stafford, Robin D. Laws (2009) Moon Design LLC
A fantasy RPG set in the world of Glorantha, the setting for original for RuneQuest and for Hero Wars. This is essentially a second edition to Hero Wars with a new title.
The Hero's Banner
1st ed by Tim C. Koppang (2006) TCK Roleplaying
A fantasy RPG about the choices of a hero on the cusp of his greatness. It uses an abstract narrative system with a GM. Each character has three stats ("Influences") representing possible goals in life. The player can reroll failures by raising the highest score (possibly switching it), such that eventually one of the three goals will win out -- leaving the other two unachieved.
HERO System
1st ed by George MacDonald, Steve Peterson, Rob Bell (1989) Hero Games
5th ed by Steven S. Long (2002)
6th ed by Steven S. Long (2009)
A universal RPG system, also published as the 4th edition Champions rules. Further editions count from Champions, becoming 5th and 6th. Besides superheroes, several genre books have been published for it for each edition - including "Fantasy HERO", "Cyber HERO", "Western HERO", "Horror HERO," and many others.
Hero Wars
1st ed by Robin D. Laws, Greg Stafford, Roderick Robertson, Shannon Appel (2000) Issaries, Inc.
A fantasy RPG set in the world of Glorantha (originally the RuneQuest setting). It uses a skill-based system with a single universal mechanic. Character creation is (optionally) by writing a 100 word description of the character, then extracting skills and abilities from it.
Hexicon Fantasy Roleplay: Fantasy Made Real
1st ed by Kielan Yarrow, Dan Fitt (2005) Hexicon Press LLP
A fantasy genre RPG set on an original fantasy world ("Korin-Thar"), populated by elves, dwarves, and orcs along with various other races. Character creation includes 22 races along with 50 professions. Character creation includes a mix of random-roll and point-based elements.
Hidden Invasion
1st ed by Paul Arden Lidberg (1995) Nightshift Games
"Invasores" ed by Xavi Garriga, Dicky Miracle, Miguel Antón (1996) Farsa's Wagon
An alien conspiracy RPG, with reptilian "Greys" having taken over the government with the help of ancient human conspiracies. It uses a minimalist dice pool system, the "Cinematic Adventure System". There are no attributes, just "talents". You roll d6's equal to 2 plus your talent vs a difficulty number. Character creation is by allocating 10d of talents. There is a Spanish edition under the title "Invasores: La conspiración alienígena," which adapted the background information for Spain and added a new introductory adventure ("Convergence" by John Tynes, originally written for Call of Cthulhu).
Hidden Kingdom: A Fantasy-Adventure Game
1st ed by Jon McClenahan, Stan Dokupil, Gene Riemenschnieder (1985) New Rules, Inc.
A fantasy RPG set in Arthurian times, highlighting political and religious conflict. It was sold as a three-ring binder with a red and blue illustration of a knight holding a banner on a horse on the cover, and included fold-out color hex-maps of England. You can choose from over three hundered Arthurian characters whose statistics were given in the main book, including a mix of knights/kings and ladies/queens. Characters also have a spiritual/philosophical alignment based on the Arthurian cultural context. The four alignments Pagan Powerlord (i.e. extremist pagan), Pagan Chivalrous, Christian Chivalrous, and Christian Renunciate (i.e. extremist Christian). In combat, a 20-sided die determines whether you landed an effective strike against your opponent, a 12-sided die determines the hit location, and an 8-sided die determines the extent of injury. There is also a separate jousting system.
Hidden Legacy
1st ed by Mark A. Schultz (1999) Valiant Games
A medieval fantasy-genre RPG set in the primitive World of Korroth, populated by 9 races: insectoid Grrites, human-like "Humuns", dragon-like Hynchar, amazonian Inyo, lizard-like Koothron, weasel-like Kurk, lizard-like Moudunn, enigmatic Shii, and insectoid Zhontal'rai. It uses a d12 dice-pool system, using special icon-marked "Success Dice" and "Battle Dice".
High Adventure Cliffhangers: The Buck Rogers Adventure Game
1st ed by Jeff Grubb, Steven E. Schend (1993) TSR
A sci-fi RPG based on the original Buck Rogers comic strip. This is a new take on the same source material as TSR's earlier game, Buck Rogers XXVC. The setting is the 25th century, where there a war between the Han -- the Mongolian rulers of the Earth -- and organized resistance. The technology includes anti-gravity jumping belts, rocket pistols, airships, biplanes, and disintegrator weaponry. The system uses an additive d6 dice pool: roll a number of open-ended d6s (maximum 8d6) based on your attribute rank, +1 for applicable skill) vs a difficulty number. Each character has four attributes (Strength, Aim, Brains, and Health), which are each rated one of four ranks (OK, Good, Better, Best). They then pick five binary skills. Movement and combat are regulated by action points. Earned Experience Chips help increase your chances. The boxed set includes three booklets, maps, fold-up counters, along with ten six-sided dice and a bag of white and red poker chips.
High Colonies
1st ed by Edwin King (1988) Waterford Publishing House
A sci-fi RPG, set in 2188 where Earth is a wasteland and humanity lives in several hundred space stations scattered around the solar system. There are also "bio-gens" (biological androids) and a friendly alien species. The system is a percentile skill-based system, with random-roll attributes. Does not include rules for spaceships. Reviewed in White Wolf #15.
High Fantasy
1st ed by Jeffrey C. Dillow (1978) Fantasy Productions Inc.
2nd ed (1981) Reston Publishing Company Inc.
A fantasy-genre RPG, from makers of the AD&D scenarios "Fortress Ellendar" and "Moorguard".
High Medieval: Adventure Through History
1st ed by Scott Agnew, Jim Andrews, Aaron Dembski-Bowden (2005) Morrigan Press
A historical fantasy RPG that adds fantasy and magical elements to late medieval Europe. It uses the "Omni RPG System," also released under Wizards of the Coast's Open Game License. Action resolution uses skill or attribute minus difficulty + 1d20, interpreting the results on a universal degree of success table.
High Valor: Dark Age Fantasy Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Tim Kirk (2010) Better Mousetrap Games Silver Lion Studios
A fantasy RPG set on an original world, where demonic Fane-Lords are returning to the Free Kingdoms of the West after centuries absent. Races include Humans, the Sidhain ("elf-touched" humans), Dvegar (Dwarfs), Sidda (Elves), and Fomoradgh (feline beast-men created by the Fane-Lords). Resolution uses a dice pool system, where players roll a number of d10s equal to their attribute and take the highest die, then add any related trait's rank (+2 to +10). A highest die result of "10" also adds the next-highest die. Character creation is limited point-based, with players spending 5 points to raise the attribute pools (Will, Faith, and Valor) up from rank 1, and then spending picks on traits.
HindSight
1st ed by Tonio Loewald (1987) self-published
A variant of the Foresight sci-fi rules for the fantasy genre.
Historia Rodentia
1st ed by Emily Fontana, Matthew Whitehouse, Pedro Panzardi (2010) On The Lamb Games
A miniatures skirmish game and role-playing game set in a fantasy world of anthropomorphic animals that closely parallels the historical Napoleonic era. The inhabitants of the various factions include anthropomorphic rats, rabbits, dogs, hamsters, badgers, and moles -- including Emperor Moleon II. It uses a version of the percentile skill-based rules from Mongoose Publishing's Legend RPG.
HIT
1st ed by James Overton, Jonah Miller (1999) Stormcrow Games
A generic "modern action" RPG system. It has several levels of rules complexity which work on the same stat scale and basic engine. The levels range from "freestyle" (LARP rules, almost diceless); "dramatist" (6 skills, point-build, d20 against stat+skill); "gamist" (more skills, more special cases, same basic rules engine as dramatist); and "simulationist" (still more skills and special cases, action point move-combat rules).
HOL: Human Occupied Landfill
1st ed by Todd Shaughnessy, Daniel Thron, Chris Elliott (1993) Dirt Merchant
2nd ed (1994) White Wolf
A blackly comedic sci-fi RPG, set on a dismal prison planet. The rulebook is hand-written (!!) and portrays the twisted world of Sodomy Bikers, Wastits, Jumpslugs, and more. The rules are basic attribute + skill + 2d6 vs difficulty, with the attributes being Greymatta, Feets, Nuts, Mouth, and Meat.
Hollow Earth Expedition
1st ed by Jeff Combos, Brannon Boren, Bruce Baugh, Eric Cagle, Jason Carl, Patrick Bradley, Steve Winter (2006) Exile Game Studio
A pulp action game set in the 1930s, inspired by the lost worlds stories of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Jules Verne, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. It uses a dice pool system, the "Ubiquity System", which can use any even-sided dice. Action resolution is by rolling dice equal to skill, where each even result is a success. Results can be modified by spending Style Points.
Hollowpoint
1st ed by B. Murray, C.W. Marshall (2011) VSCA Publishing
A modern-day action RPG, inspired by ultra-violent action movies. Character creation is by assigning priorities to the six skills: values (5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 0) to Kill, Cool, Con, Take, Dig, and Terror. Players also choose five unique descriptive traits, such as "thirst for revenge" or "I love black magic". Action resolution is by rolling d6s equal to skill and looking for matching sets, trying to beat matching sets from the GM's opposed roll. Players can gain more dice by using traits that apply, or by drawing from the Teamwork Pool - a limited resource used when helping or praising other players.
Hollywood Lives
1st ed by Reiner Knizia, Kevin Jacklin (2004) Fantasy Flight Games
A semi-freeform live-action game which mixes party game, trading game, and role-playing elements. A group of 10 to 25 players take on the nominal roles of old Hollywood stars and producers, then break up into teams and collaborate to perform three-minute trailers for a set of films. There is an economy of cash and fame pips for the film production, along with bonus points from awards voting after all of the trailers are performed. The game provides a selection of parody names of stars and movie titles.
Holocaustic Dungeons
1st ed by Kristoffer A. Silver (1986) Silver Wolf Games
A dungeon crawl game, where the PCs delve into futuristic dungeons designed to protect certain artifacts while providing media coverage of the dungeoneers as entertainment for the masses.
Holy Lands: The Christian Role-Playing Game
Light Edition ed by Matthew Nigro (2004) Faith Quest Games
A Christian fantasy game, set in a generic fantasy setting. Action resolution is generally 1d20 + modifiers vs difficulty. Character creation is class-based, with ten classes: Bard, Cleric, Knight, Martialist, Saint, Scout, Spy, Warrior, Devil Hunter, and Soldier. Each class has attribute requirements, Life and Faith points, and skill selections. The nine attributes are determined by random-roll: Intellect, Wisdom, Patience, Strength, Agility, Speed, Endurance, Beauty, and Charisma.
Homicidal Transients
1st ed by A. Miles Davis (2011) Left of the Moon Games
A tongue-in-cheek RPG where the PCs are gangs who wander aimlessly and kill things to get their stuff - a satire on Dungeons & Dragons and similar games. It uses a simple rules system requiring only one pencil, a piece of paper, and a single die.
Hong Kong Action Theatre!
1st ed by Gareth-Michael Skarka (1996) Event Horizon Productions
2nd ed by Scott Kessler, Nicole Lindroos, Jeff Mackintosh, Chris Pramas, Lucien Soulban (2001) Guardians of Order
An extremely cinematic RPG which emulates Hong Kong action movies. For example, your chance to hit an opponent is not based on range or armor, but solely on the Star Power of the opposing actor, or the character's importance to the current plot! The 2nd edition rules were adapted to be compatible with the Big Eyes, Small Mouth system, while still keeping many of the innovative features.
Honor + Intrigue
1st ed by Chris Rutkowsky (2005) Basic Action Games
A swashbuckling game, using rules based on Simon Washbourne's Barbarians of Lemuria RPG, with new features intended for the swashbuckling theme.
Hoodoo Blues
1st ed by Carl Warner, Brian St. Claire-King (2010) Vajra Enterprises
A horror RPG set in the modern American South, haunted by the past of slavery, oppression, and magic. Character creation is point-based and class-based, and includes flavor choices such as deciding on your character's musical tastes in Step Two. Players splits 80 points between eight attributes, chooses from among six classes, and split 100 points among skills (with costs based on class). Action resolution is attribute + skill + 1d20 vs difficulty. It has a detailed combat system with maneuvers and three Health attributes: Blood, Body, and Incapacity. The classes are: Crossroader, Hag, Hoodoo Doctor, Loup Garou, Medicine Worker, and Voodoo.
Horror Show
1st ed by Brendan Davis, William Butler (2011) Bedrock Games
A horror movie RPG, focusing on monster horror. It uses a d10 dice pool system (the "Network System"), rolling dice equal to skill and comparing the highest roll to difficulty or opposing skill. Rolls of 10 are open-ended. Character creation is point-based, with default "roles" (such as cop, bookworm, survivor, or scientist) which determine how many points they get in each skill group (defense, combat, physical, mental, specialist and knowledge). Players can also take Shortcomings (such as "addict" or "cowardly"), and Acquaintances - NPCs who provide one favor per session (either support or information).
Hostage... a Pawn of Terrorism
1st ed (1986) Force Four Games
A modern-day action RPG narrowly focused on hostage situations. One can play a terrorist, a hostage, a policeman, or a civilian (negotiator, policy, journalist) within the framework of a taking of hostages. The 70-page soft-cover rule booklet includes an extensive list of equipment (up to rocket launchers), and an experience system based on specific objectives achieved for that role -- i.e. a hostage earns points for hiding and surviving, for example.
Hot Chicks: The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Scott Corum, Victor Gipson (2008) Dakkar Unlimited
A near-future sci-fi game set in 2015 of a world where an alliance of corrupt capitalists, actual demons from the Netherworld, and sinster alien scientists who all have their own reasons to exploit human suffering -- especially attractive human women. It uses a skill-based system called the "Inverted 20" System, where resolution is by rolling under attribute + skill. Combat uses a damage save using a d20, where failing takes damage in "shrugs". The core rules include options for magic, psionics, cyberware, and super powers.
Hot War
1st ed by Malcom Craig (2009) Contested Ground Studios
An alternative history/horror game set in London of an alternate 1963, one year after a world war erupted in Europe using nuclear as well as occult weapons. The PCs are members of the Special Situations Group.
Houses of the Blooded
1st ed by John Wick, Storn A. Cook, Daniel Solis (2008) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A fantasy RPG set on an original world, where the player characters are nobles of the Ven -- the ruling race divided into a set of noble houses. It uses a dice pool system that adapts Aspects from Spirit of the Century. The player rolls a number of d6s equal to attribute plus 3 dice for each aspect invoked. If the total is over 10 or the opponent's roll, the character succeeds and the player can narrate what happens. There is also a wager system that lets the player remove a die for a chance at more narrative power. The system focuses on the intrigue within the nobles houses including social interaction, economics, and clothing style.
How to Host a Dungeon
1st ed by Tony Dowler (2008) Planet Thirteen Games
A solo dungeon-building game, where the single player traces out the history of a dungeon from the Primordial Age through the last Age of Tyrrany. There are a series of randomized events using assorted dice (d4, d6, d8, d10, d12, and d20); as well as beads in two colors to track effects.
How We Came to Live Here: Stories of the Fifth World
1st ed by Brennan Taylor (2010) Galileo Games
A story-telling game based on myth and legend of American Indians of the Southwest, intended for two GM-like roles and 1-3 players. The player characters are the heroes of a village of people in a world filled with monsters. GMing is split between the "Outer Player" who controls external threats, and the "Inner Player" who controls internal conflicts within the village. All players take turns setting scenes, and conflicts are resolved by rolling pools of Fudge dice that are pushed in sets to win an overall conflict.
The Human Interface for Fantasy Roleplaying
1st ed by Martin Melhus, John F. Sasso (2002) IGS Games LLC
A fantasy-genre RPG set on an original world, published electronically. The commercial rules include 28 character races, 66 character background packages, 150 skills, 40 magic spells, and 85 creatures.
Hunter Planet
1st ed by David Bruggeman (1986) TAGG / HPAC Pty, Ltd.
A humorous sci-fi RPG about aliens come to Earth to hunt humans (or rather, come to "Dirt" to hunt "hoomans"), using a minimalist system.
Hunter: The Reckoning
1st ed by Bruce Baugh, Geoff Grabowski, Angel McCoy, Greg Stolze, et al. (1999) White Wolf
A modern-day monster-hunting RPG, where the PC's are normal humans who find that they have supernatural powers ("Edges") which allow them to notice and fight monsters hidden around us. It is set in the "World of Darkness", filled with vampires, werewolves, wraiths, mummies, and other supernatural creatures. The origin and purpose of the hunters' powers remains an unknown mystery. It uses the "Storyteller" dice-pool system.
Hyperborean Mice
1st ed by Frank Sronce (2010) Kiz and Jenn Press
A fantasy-genre role-playing game in the swords and sorcery subgenre, as portrayed by anthropomorphic mice and rats. It is set in the valley of Hyperborea, where albino mice with magical powers (called the White Lords) rule over an empire threatened by barbarian rat tribes, deadly predators, and political intrigue. Instead of fantasy monsters, there are giant predators such as foxes and owls as well as smaller ones such as shrews. It uses an original system, with resolution based on attribute + skill + 2d6 vs. difficulty, with every 5 points that you succeed for fail by being one level of success. Character creation is limited point-based. The attributes are Agility, Brawn, Cleverness, Perception and Magic - with derived combat stats based on averages between these, such as Melee (Agility + Brawn) and Dodge (Agility + Cleverness). It includes an original magic system focused around six different magical arts and four levels of spell effects.
ICONS: Superpowered Roleplaying
1st ed by Walt Ciechanowski, Morgan Davie, Steve Kenson, Gareth-Michael Skarka (2010) Adamant Entertainment
Assembled ed (2014) Adamant Entertainment
A superhero RPG using a simple original system. There is no setting although there are sample characters. Action resolution is based on attribute + 1d6 - 1d6 (adding a positive and subtracting a negative die) compared to difficulty. Only the player rolls to resolve contests. Character creation is random-roll including origin, attributes, the number and type of powers, and specializations. The attributes are Prowess, Coordination, Strength, Intellect, Awareness, and Willpower. There are over 70 powers in the core rules. In addition, characters and the team of player characters create freeform positive Qualities (such as Secret Identity, Connections, or Motivation) and negative Challenges (such as a Fear or Vulnerability). Characters can spend Determination Points to gain advantages through Qualities, and gain Determination Points by invoking Challenges. Advantages can make small changes to the world, boost die rolls, recover lost Stamina, and generate Stunts with your powers.
Idyll: Romantic Fantasy
1st ed by James Stubbs (2007) Heyoka Studios
A romantic fantasy mini-RPG (14 pages), that emulates the fiction popularized by authors such as Tamora Pierce, Mercedes Lackey and Tanith Lee. It uses a licensed variant of the "1PG" system from Deep 7, Inc. -- whose basic rules fit on one page. Resolution is roll a d6 and try and get under your attribute or skill. The basic game also includes custom character sheets, magic rules and sample spell list, referee advise, six adventure scenarios and custom genre rules specific to the genre.
Imagine Role Playing System
1st ed by W. Michael Tenery III (1998) Imagine
A universal RPG system, based on the "Players Guide" (348pp). It uses a percentile skill-based system except for combat which is d20 based. Skills are broken up into class skills, racial skills, and social skills. Character creation is class-based (warrior / rogue / priest / mage), with random-roll attributes. Character advancement is level based.
Immortal: The Invisible War
1st ed by Ran Ackels (1994) Precedence
2nd ed (1999)
A modern-day-magic RPG about shape-shifting immortal beings from a long-past mystic accident which created them, fighting other immortals. It uses a step-die system, with limited point-buy character creation.
The Imp Game, Mischief & Mayhem
1st ed by Nate Petersen (2005) Neo Productions Unlimited
A humorous fantasy RPG where the player characters are imps -- tiny bumbling demonic henchmen working for a fiendish wizard played by the GM. It uses a simple system where the player must roll under a target number on 2d6. This is not based on the difficulty of the task, but rather is an absolute number which is independent of the player and circumstances. The target number is raised only by players spending "Guts Points," which are a sort of hero points for the game. The target number starts out at 2, is raised one-for-one by spending Guts points. After a successful roll, it is reset to 2. Character creation is class-based, including classes such as Big Dumb Imps, Smart Imps, Devious Imps, and Crazy Imps. Successful missions or quests can earn "Praise Points" from the Imp's master. The Imps can use Praise Points between sessions to purchase new traits and abilities, which range from firebreathing to kleptomania and pacifism.
In a Wicked Age
1st ed by Vincent Baker (2008) Lumpley Games
A sword and sorcery fantasy role playing game, with abstract mechanics that include random situation-generation mechanics to create characters and create dramatic conflicts for them. A game begins by generating four entries for each of the four Oracles (16 total), with the Oracles being predefined as "Blood & Sex", "God-kings of War", "The Unquiet Past", and "A Nest of Vipers." It uses a step-die system, where the attributes are the six Forms, namely: "Covertly", "Directly", "For Myself", "For Others", "With Love", and "With Violence". Each is rated from d4 to d12, and player-defined particular strengths are added as modifiers. Resolution is handled by highest die of two Forms plus modifiers, and the winner may impose penalties on the loser -- but the result in-fiction must be agreed on by both players.
Incursion
1st ed by Richard Tucholka (1992) Tri-Tac Games
A sci-fi RPG about humans abducted from Earth who escape their alien abductors. Set in the present, PC's are part of the masses who hardly realize that thousands of people are vanishing every year -- until they are woken from cryo sleep by a 4 foot tall cockroach and was asked "Help us!" The characters are lost in a fallen alien empire of a hundred million inhabited worlds, including 40 different alien races.
Inferno
1st ed by Gabe Ivan (1994) Death's Edge Games
A fantasy/horror RPG set in Hell -- with characters ranging from a priest hunting through Hell for souls wrongly imprisoned to a vile necromancer to a Hellspawn. Action resolution is roll under stat on 1d20. Character creation is by choosing race (mortal, shade, hellspawn, or imp); randomly rolling attributes with modifications for race; choosing a class (priest, layman, or necromancer for mortals and shades; demon for hellspawn and imps); and finally determining skills by a mix of class and point-spending. Class also determines faith status: Faithful, Doubtful, or Infernal. The game includes two types of magic: divine (for priests) and sorcery (for necromancers).
Infernum
1st ed by Gareth Hanrahan (2005) Mongoose Publishing
A fantasy game set in hell, where the player characters can be demons, fallen angels, mortals, or damned souls struggling to conquer and become lords within the Pit (as it is known). It uses a variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D.
Infinite Legends Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Jason Broadley, Robert Frey (2004) Darkharbor Games
A universal RPG system, including an involved combat system emphasizing realism, and a generic effects system for representing magic, psionics, cybernetics, and so forth. It uses a target number dice pool resolution -- roll a number of d10s equal to stat / 2, and each roll higher than difficulty (1-9) counts as one success rank. There are 18 attributes divided into Physical, Mental, and Spiritual -- where each category has six functions: fortitude, force, aptitude, interface, martial, and structural. For example, the Physical Force attribute is Strength. Character creation is open point-based, buying attributes, skills, and positive and negative traits with Development Points.
Infinite Powers: Superheroic Action Role Playing Game
1st ed by Levi Mote (2011) Bonsai Games
A superhero RPG using a simple dice pool system. The player rolls a number of d8s equal to stat (attribute + skill) and compares the total of all dice to difficulty or opposed roll. There are eight attributes (rated 1-50: Fighting, Agility, Intelligence, Reflexes, Willpower, Presence, Health, Durability. There are also 19 skills (rated 1-3) and over 50 talents - similar to advantages or feats, as well as over 150 example powers. There is no setting, but there are 4 sample heroes and two teams of sample enemies.
The Infinity System
1st ed by Derrick Charbonnet, Terry Podgorski (1978) Threshold Games
An universal RPG movement and combat system (36 pages), intended to encompass vehicles and weapons from the stone age to the future including fantasy. It was a skill-based system using d20's for hit and damage. Character creation was random-roll attributes (3d6), but had no classes or levels. The original rulebook included a very limited magic system. There were no supplements.
In Flames
1st ed by Greg Saunders (2011) Fire Ruby Designs
A sci-fi RPG that draws from Haitian Voudoun mythology, where reality includes both the material world (the Flame Worlds) and the spirit world (the Understar). The player characters are exiled Loa - godlike beings from the Understar who are now trapped in human bodies as punishment for their crimes. It uses the "Mini 6" system, a variant of the OpenD6 system that derives from West End Games' D6 System. It adds in two scales for Guilt and Dislocation. Guilt shows how close a character is to forgiveness for their crimes, while Dislocation shows how strongly they are connected to their host body.
In Harm's Way: A Napoleonic Naval Role-playing Game
1st ed by clash bowley (2010) Flying Mice LLC
A historical RPG set in Napoleonic era Europe as romanticized in the fiction of authors like Forster, O'Brian, Parkinson, Lambdin, and Pope. It uses a dice pool system, the StarPool dice mechanic, also used in the Starcluster RPG.
Inner City
1st ed by Chris Clark (1982) Inner City
A humorous modern-day action RPG, based on playing cops or crooks in a universe modeled after the really bad police shows of the 70's. It has 3 supplements: "Peacekeepers", "Pavement Pounders", and "The Mug Book".
In Nomine
1st [French] ed by Croc (1989) Siroz
2st [English] ed by Derek Pearcy (1997) Steve Jackson Games
A modern-day-magic RPG about the ongoing War between angels and demons, where both sides can be ugly and treacherous in trying to win the battle of intrigue over men's souls. The original French-language game came in two parts ("In Nomine Satanis / Magna Veritas"), and was much more tongue-in-cheek than the American game. The mechanics of the English game are a fixed roll of 2d6 versus skill, with the quality of success determined by a third die (dubbed "d666").
Inquisitor: The Battle for the Emperor's Soul
1st ed by Gav Thorpe (2001) Games Workshop
A "narrative wargame" set in a horrific future in the 41st millenium. This is a miniatures wargame played on a table-top with miniatures for each PC, but it requires the part of a game-master and has added narrative elements. It uses a percentile based system.
InSpectres
1st ed by Jared Sorensen (2002) Memento Mori Theatricks Wicked Dead Brewing Company
In a modern-day setting unabashedly owing much to Ghostbusters, the supernatural is on the rise and publicly acknowledged. The public's reaction certainly is: ghosts, vampires, werewolves, and other horrors are a source of embarrassment rather than widespread panic. The game is about InSpectres, Inc. -- a franchise operation dedicated to "fighting the forces of darkness so you don't have to", and willing to employ just about anyone to do it. It uses a narrative dice-pool system where a roll determines whether the player or the GM narrates the results. Impairment can occur in the form of Stress Dice. There is also a "Confessional" mechanic, which allows players to narrate changes to the scene by narrating in-character as if from a later time. PC's have four broad Skills (Athletics, Academics, Technology, and Contact) which are point-allocated, plus a freeform Talent. The PC's franchise also has stats which affect rolls.
Interstellar Elite Combat
1st ed by Dave Miller (1990) Game Masters Associated
A sci-fi roleplaying line, including one supplement dealing with artic combat. Reviewed in White Wolf #28. The line may have been sold to Wizards of the Coast in 1994, but as far as I know they did not publish anything for it.
Invaderz
1st ed by James Desborough (2008) Postmortem Studios
Pocket ed (2011)
A humorous game where the player characters are low-level footsoldiers in a massive invasion of Earth. These can be warrior clones of the planet-sized Jerkian Emperor or various slave races to the Jerkian invaders. They are frequently given peculiar orders from high command, and often survive only by betrayal of their fellows to rise in the ranks. It uses a variant of the "Beer and Crisps" system from the Urban Faerie game.
Ironclaw
1st ed by Jason Holmgren (1999) Sanguine Productions
An anthropomorphic fantasy-genre RPG, in a neo-Elizabethan fantasy setting dealing with the rise of technology and the middle class. It uses a loose skill-based system, where attributes and skills are rated on a step-die system (d4, d6, d8, d10). Roll (attribute die) + (skill die) vs difficulty.
Iron Gauntlets: Heroic Fantasy Roleplaying
1st ed by Brett Bernstein (2004) Politically Incorrect Games
A simple fantasy-genre RPG aimed at beginners, using a variant of the "Impresa" system. Action resolution uses a d10 dice pool, rolling a number of dice equal to your attribute, with each roll under skill counting as one 'step'. Difficulty is expressed as number of steps required for success.
Ironhedge
1st ed by John Brooke (1987) Empire Wargames
2nd ed (1989)
A fantasy system with supplements for other genres: "Ganghedge" (inner city gangs), "Starhedge" (space opera), and "Westhedge".
Iron Heroes
1st ed by Michael Mearls (2005) Malhavoc Press
The core book of a fantasy genre RPG, a variant of the third edition D&D Player's Handbook that focuses on warriors and weaponed combat more than flashy magic.
It Came from the Late, Late, Late Show
1st ed by Bradley K. McDevitt, Walter H. Mytczenskyj (1989) Stellar Games
A bad-movie parody RPG.
It's Complicated
1st ed by Elizabeth Shoemaker (2008) Dissolute Games
Revised ed (2010)
A storytelling game about convoluted, messy, compelling, and occasionally one-sided relationships - designed to facilitate play in the style of movies like The Royal Tenenbaums, and television shows like Ugly Betty and Pushing Daisies.
It Was a Mutual Decision
1st ed by Ron Edwards (2006) Adept Press
A story-oriented game about romantic break-up, with the possibility that one is an evil were-rat.
Jadeclaw
1st ed by Jason Holmgren (2001) Sanguine Productions
An anthropomorphic fantasy-genre RPG, in fantasy setting based on Chinese mythology. It is a new worldbook for Ironclaw, using the same system.
James Bond 007
1st ed by Gerard Christopher Klug (1983) Victory Games
An espionage-adventure RPG, based on the film series (which were based on the books by Ian Flemng). It uses a percentile skill-based system, with a universal chart that gives four Quality Ratings of results. Quality Ratings are emphasized over success/failure in the system. It also includes a Hero point system where points can be spent to modify the outcome of rolls. Character creation is open point-based, allowing characters at "Rookie", "Agent", and "00" levels.
Jeremiah: The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Scott Agnew (2005) Mongoose Publishing Morrigan Press
A post-apocalyptic RPG based on the graphic novel series by Hermann Huppen, and subsequent television series adapted by J. Michael Straczynski. It is set in the United States fifteen years after a mysterious disease called The Big Death wiped out everyone over the age of puberty. It is a complete game using variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D. The basic classes are Brainboy, Guardian, Jock, Mystic, Scavenger, Shepherd, Thief, Trader, and Wanderer.
John Carter, Warlord of Mars
1st ed by M. S. Matheny (1978) Heritage Models
A pulp sci-fi miniatures system and RPG, based on the novels by Edgar Rice Burrough's. It is primarily wargame in flavor, but does provide background on Barsoom and its cultures.
Journeyman: A Science Fiction Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Frederick Goff (1989) Infinity Games
This is a space-faring hard science-fiction genre RPG. There is no specific campaign setting, but it discusses various space-faring campaign options. It includes description of 3 human sub-races and 6 detailed and realistic alien races, rules generating solar systems and planets, and rules for soceity tech levels. The system resolves actions by d10 + skill - difficulty vs a flat value of 10 to determine success. Character creation has seven random-roll (3d6) attributes and profession templates which determine starting skills. Skill increases are point-bought. It has an extensive section on space travel and space combat, including appendices with the real-world equations they are based on.
Jovian Chronicles
1st ed by Phillippe Boulle, Jean Carrieres, Wunji Lau, Marc-Alexandre Vézina (1997) Dream Pod 9
A spacefaring mecha RPG, set in 2210 after an optimistic expansion into the solar system has founded the "Jovian confederation" of space colonies. Earth is now dominated by a central government ("CEGA"), following a long period of depression and unreset caused by pollution and ecological disasters. In 2210, CEGA lost a brief war with the Jovian confederation, fought over an Earth scientist defecting with the secret of "cyberlinkage". It uses the "Silhouette" system: a simple dice pool system: roll dice (d6's) equal to skill and take the best, and add attribute (-3 to +3).
Judge Dredd: The Role-Playing Game
Boxed Set ed by Marc Gascoigne, Rick Priestley (1985) Games Workshop
Hardback ed (1989)
A futuristic sci-fi RPG set in a dark urban nightmare, based on the comic book series by Alan Grant and John Wagner. In the future, urban crime has become so rampant that elite autonomous "Judges" are employed who act as policeman, judge, jury, and executioner. It uses a simple percentile system, with involved combat rules including 10-phase turns and hit location. Attributes are Strength and Initiative; skills are Drive, Street, Tech, Medical, Combat, and PSI. There were four supplements: "Judgement Day" (Scenario 1986), "Slaughter Margin" (Supplement 1987), "Judge Dredd Companion" (Supplement 1987), and "City Block" (Supplement 1987) . cf. Ivan Hanley's Judge Dredd page.
The Judge Dredd Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Matthew Sprange (2002) Mongoose Publishing
A futuristic sci-fi RPG set in a dark urban nightmare, based on the comic book series by Alan Grant and John Wagner. In the future, urban crime has become so rampant that elite autonomous "Judges" are employed who act as policeman, judge, jury, and executioner. The rules are a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. Complete rules are not provided: basic rules for character creation, combat, and other systems refer to the D&D Players Handbook.
Juggernaut
1st ed by Jason Morningstar (2015) Bully Pulpit Games
A card-based live-action roleplaying game for 3-6 players, aimed for a session of about two hours. It is set in the U.S. of an alternate July 1950, where a group has invented a computer that can see the future.
Juggernauts: A Gun Stroking Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Kevin R. Brown (2003) Collision Entertainment Design
A humorous action-genre RPG set in an ultra-modern Earth soiled with the supernatural. Now, werewolves, aliens, vampires, and more have set the world awry. The PCs are heavily-armed and nearly unstoppable forces. It uses a simple skill-based system with three attributes and d10's for resolution.
Justice, Inc.
1st ed by Aaron Allston, Steve Peterson, Michael A. Stackpole (1984) Hero Games
A generic pulp action RPG, in a two volume set: rulebook and campaign book. The system is a variant of the 3rd edition Champions rules, but instead of the superpowers meta-system, there were skill-like psychic powers. The campaign book includes a discussion of different pulp genres, a campaign setting (The Empire Club), an overview of the 1930's, and a half-dozen pulp adventures.
Justifiers
1st ed by Gideon, Blaine Pardoe (1988) StarChilde
A sci-fi RPG in a dark future where "Transmatts" (i.e. stargates) allow limited teleportation to a host of Earth-like worlds. Megacorporations hire mercenary teams ("Justifiers") to "pacify" new worlds for colonization and exploitation. Justifiers are uplifted animals with limited rights, trying to eventually buy their freedom. It uses a simple percentile skill-based system, including a choice of 28 anthropomorphic animal races (from albatrosses to rhinos!).
KABAL
1st ed by Ernest T. Hams (1980) Kabal Gaming Systems
2nd ed (1982)
A medieval fantasy-genre RPG, using a math-heavy system and including detailed dungeon maps. The title is an acronym for "Knights and Beserkers and Legerdemain". It uses a percentile system. Character creation is random-roll attributes (6d20 for eight attributes). The boxed set includes four booklets: player's guide, rules, magic spells, and creature catalog.
Kagematsu
1st ed by Danielle Lewon (2009) Cream Alien Games
A narrative-heavy single-session historical storytelling game for 3-6 players, set in Japan in 1572. The scenario is that a wayward ronin named Kagematsu flees to a village - and several young women conspire to win his affections and convince him to defend their village from a deadly threat. A female player plays Kagematsu, while other players play various women of the village. Game play is divided into Courtship and Confrontation. In Courtship, the women characters use their Charm or Innocence in a contested roll versus a number of dice specified by the particular Affection they are trying to get.
The Karma Roleplaying System
1st ed by Julie Ann Dawson (2008) Bards & Sages Publishing
A skill-based universal system featuring a detailed magic system. Resolution is based on 1d20 + attribute vs. difficulty or opposing roll. Character creation is point-based. There are 12 attributes rated from 0 to 5 divided into three groups: physical, cerebral and spiritual. Characters start with rank 1 in each, and have 6 attribute points to add to them. They also have a profession package and 15 starting points that can go to any of attributes, skills, damage threshold, or mana.
Kayfabe: The Inside Wrestling Game
1st ed by Matthew Gwinn (2002) Errant Knight Games
A pro-wrestling RPG using a storytelling-emphasized system, published electronically. The fights are actually faked and are resolved as such -- while the players work on promotion, showmanship, and other aspects of being a wrestler. It uses a simple d6-based dice pool system.
The Kerberos Club (FATE Edition)
1st FATE ed by Benjamin Baugh, Mike Olson (2011) Arc Dream Publishing
A science fantasy game where the player characters are super-powered individuals in Victorian England of an alternate history. The Kerberos Club is a private group of individuals with powers who battle threats to the Empire and world. In the alternate history, Queen Victoria becomes a mystic embodiment of the British Empire, while inventions appear such as machine men, flight devices, and lightning guns. Faerie is annexed into the Empire after a war, leading to even more over-the-top action towards the end of the era. The setting was originally published as sourcebooks for Savage Worlds and Wild Talents, while the FATE edition is a standalone game using a variant of the FATE system called "Strange FATE" intended for use with superhero settings.
Kevin & Kell Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Jamie C. Borg, Michael Hopcroft (2005) ComStar Media, LLC
A anthropomorphic animals RPG based on the long-standing webcomic by Bill Holbrook. It is set in a twist on the modern world where there are only animals instead of humans, with the canonical characters being a married couple who happen to be a wolf and a rabbit -- now with kids in school and a mix of problems of domestic and wild problems. The system is based on the Action! System from Gold Rush Games.
Key-RP
1st ed by David Sharrock, Wyn F Dawkins, Suzanna Hope (2007) Forever People Digital Press
A universal RPG system, designed primarily for use with play-by-email games, as well as tabletop. The basic rules are intended for modern-day and horror genre, but an appendix includes optional rules for fantasy and science fiction genres. Action resolution is roll under stat + skill on 1d20. Character creation is limited point-buy: 35 points among the five attributes (Stamina, Muscle, Skill, Academia, Sense), plus five points among skills.
Khaotic
1st ed by Kathleen Williams, Joe Williams (1994) Marquee Press
An alien invasion RPG, where the PC's psychically project themselves to a distant planet to possess monsters who are invading Earth. The "Trans-Ego Device" used was invented in 1944 by Dr. Isabella Bayne, who is also the evil mastermind behind the invasion from the "tech noir" world of Xenos. The PC's are members of the International Society of Enlightened Scientists (ISES) who took charge of the TED. The catch is that the whole party possesses one creature: only one member of the party at a time can control the host, while those who are not in control can use psychic powers and offer advice. It uses a variant of the system from Legendary Lives.
Khymir: The Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Mark E. Rogers, Rich Staats (2006) self-published
A fantasy RPG set in the city of Khymir and its environs in the world of Thorgon Karrelssa - the setting for Mark E. Rogers' books Zorachus, The Nightmare of God, and the Blood of the Lamb series. It uses a skill-based system where flat numbers are converted into die rolls. By default every 7 points of stat becomes 2d6, so if skill + modifiers is 15, that would be rolled as 2d6+1 and compared to difficulty.
KidWorld
1st ed by Brian St. Claire-King, Elroy LaSanta (2009) Vajra Enterprises
A post-apocalyptic game, set in after a worldwide plague has killed 50% of the adult population and left the remainder blinded, leaving kids as the majority. Many adults began to capture and train kids to be their armies, and many kids rebelled against adult rule. Resolution uses 1d20 + attribute + skill versus a target number. Character creation is limited point-based, with the number of points for attributes depending on age. Adult characters get 90 points, kids get fewer depending on age. There are 3 classes for adults (Brains, Brawns, Mouth) and 9 for kids (Builders, Cadets, Ferals, Horse Riders, Inheritors, Nurturers, Radicals, Scouts, Students). It has a detailed skill system with over a hundred skills. Each character spending 100 points on skills, with cost per level determined by class.
Kill Puppies For Satan
1st ed by Vincent Baker (2002) Lumpley Games
A tongue-in-cheek game where the PCs are low-class demons who exist to cause minor pointless misery and annoyance to the world. By committing evil, they collect power for low-rent miracles to further their work.
Kingdom of Nothing
1st ed by Jeff Himmelman (2010) Galileo Games
An urban fantasy RPG about homeless people, the Lost, who have suffered an unknown trauma and begun to forget even who they are and where they come from. As they are ignored, they slip through the cracks of their world into a mysterious realm filled with nightmarish secrets. Character creation is point based, with players assigning the two attributes (Lucidity and Survival), free-form skills, an Echo (an object that guides the character) and Burden (what is holding them back). Resolution is based on coin flips, where the player flips a mix of coins from a cup, and each head gives successes. Pennies are from attributes and earn 1 success; nickels are from skills and earn 2 successes; a dime comes from the Echo and earns 3 successes; a quarter comes from the Burden and earns 4 successes. The player can lose coins that are bet, but keeps successes. Further, a player can ask for coins from other players that are also risked.
Knights and Magic
1st ed by Arnold Hendrick (1980) Heritage Models
A medieval fantasy miniatures system, which included some role-playing rules and notes on use with other RPGs.
Knights of the Round Table
1st ed by Phil Edgren (1976) Little Soldier Games
A miniature system and RPG set in Arthurian Camelot. Each figure has a single stat, Prowess, which starts at 1d10 but can be raised to 100. It could be improved with experience. The rules suggested 1-7 points per adventure, although it could be reduced through unchivalrous behavior and temporarily lowered by wounds. The game had three related combat systems: jousting, hand-to-hand, and melee. Combat resolution worked by both players secretly selecting one of 10 maneuver cards. Comparing cards gave a target number to hit on 1d100, where the figure with higher Prowess adds the difference to his roll. Damage is based on the action and the difference between the roll and target. The game also included a description of the code of chivalry, some encounter tables, and rules for falling in love. The campaign section suggested that PCs could found baronies, learn magic or develop spiritual power, although very few details were provided.
Know Your Role! - World Wrestling Entertainment Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Tony Lee, Cynthia Celeste Miller, Eddy Webb, Christopher McGlothin, Marcelo Figueroa (2005) Comic Images, Inc.
A professional wrestling RPG using a variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D and D20 Modern. It has six classes, one for each primary ability: Aerial Superstar (Dexterity), Power Superstar (Strength), Rough Superstar (Constitution), Savvy Superstar (Charisma), Technical Superstar (Intelligence), and Manager (Wisdom). Each has appropriate talent trees as in D20 Modern. Combat is handled by separate damage to Endurance (which increases with level) and Trauma (equal to Constitution). The game includes a system for developing unique maneuvers, and character limits on maneuvers.
Kobolds Ate My Baby!
1st ed by Christopher O'Neill, Daniel Landis (1998) 9th Level Games
A humorous beer-and-pretzels RPG about playing kobolds sent on a mission to steal as many babies they can from the humans. It uses a very simple skill-based system including a Kobold Gruesome Death Chart and a magic system with 12 spells. There are several supplements for this game, including "More Things to Eat and Kill!".
Kult
1st [Swedish] ed by Gunilla Jonsson, Michael Petersen (1991) Target Games AB
1st [English] ed (1993) Metropolis, Ltd
2nd ed (1997)
3rd ed by Nils Gullikson, Stefan Ljungqvist, Terry K. Amthor (2004)
A surreal modern-day horror RPG, where the horrific underlying reality is a gnostic fable.
Labyrinth Lord
1st ed by Daniel Proctor (2007) Goblinoid Games
A variant of the original D&D game, mimicking the original basic game circa 1980 based on the third edition rules released under the Open Gaming License.
Labyrinths & Lycanthropes
1st ed by Joe J. Prince (2009) Prince of Darkness Games
A tongue-in-cheek dungeon crawl RPG, featuring random labyrinth generation and a rotating GM. The emphasis is on comedy and fast play, with streamlined combat and magic with no spell lists. Character creation is class-based, with the three classes being Fighter, Ninja, and Mage.
Lace and Steel
1st ed by Paul Kidd (1989) TAGG
2nd ed (1998) Plainlabel / Pharos
A swashbuckling fantasy RPG set in an alternate world parallel to our 1640's, populated with humans and civilized centaurs. It uses a skill-based system which uses cards in addition to dice. Tarot cards modify character creation (which is mixed random-roll attributes and point-bought skills), and special cards are used in combat.
Lacuna Part I: The Creation of the Mystery and the Girl from Blue City
1st ed by Jared A. Sorensen (2004) Memento Mori Theatricks
An experimental roleplaying game set in modern-day psychic world of black-suited Mystery Agents and shadowy spidermen. The PCs are "Mystery Agents" in the modern day, who go into a dream-state where they can explore a collective unconscious. This go to a place called the Blue City. Characters have four abstract attributes: Force, Access, Instinct, and Talent. These are rated in a five-step scale: 2d6, lowest 3 of 4d6, 3d6, highest 3 of 4d6, 4d6. There is a reward (Challenge Points) equal to difficulty for a successful roll that can be used to increase attributes. Since all action is psychic, there is no damage but PCs heart rates will rise with every roll. Character generation has random-roll age and mentor, freeform strength/weakness keywords, and optional picking a proficient/deficient attribute.
Lamentations of the Flame Princess: Weird Fantasy Role-Playing
Deluxe ed by James Edward Raggi IV (2010) self-published
Grindhouse ed by James Edward Raggi IV (2011) self-published
A variant of the original D&D game, part of the "Old School Renaissance", that mimics the original basic game with a focus on emulating weird pulp fantasy. It has a simple skill system along with classes of wizard, cleric, fighter, specialist, elf, dwarf, and halfling.
Land of the Rising Sun
1st ed by Lee Gold (1980) FGU
A fantasy RPG set in medieval Japan, using a variant of the original Chivalry and Sorcery system.
Lands of Adventure
1st ed by Lee Gold (1983) FGU
A generic fantasy RPG, with "culture packs" for specific settings. A short booklet covering mythic Greece and medieval England was included with the game. The system is percentile skill-based, with complex sub-systems for combat, encumbrance, movement, etc. Characters track Energy Points (EP, lost by fatigue), Body Points (BP, lost by wounds), and Life Points (lost by bleeding).
Laserburn
1st ed by Bryan Ansell, Richard Halliwell, Tony Ackland (1980) Tabletop Games
A sci-fi miniatures combat system: not really an RPG, but an ancestor of Warhammer 40K by the same authors. It features power armour, dreadnought armour, hand flamers, needle weapons, "sunguns", conversion beam projectors, bolt rifles and so forth.
The Last Exodus
1st ed by Nicholas Van Zandt, Jaz Michele (2001) Synister Creative
A modern-day magical/religious apocalypse RPG. It is set shortly after the millenium, where the PC's are all "Scions" -- powerful miracle- performer who act as either Messiahs or Antichrists. The rules system uses a standard playing deck and difficulty numbers for action resolution. Character creation is limited point based, with players spending points on four qualities: Mental, Physical, Cultural, and Spiritual, along with various other choices.
Last Train Out of Warsaw
1st ed by Jason Morningstar (2009) self-published
A roleplaying/storytelling game based on a historical fiction scenario. It is designed for a single, short session with 2-8 players - with included rules based on the free rule system Archipelago II, by Matthijs Holter. There is a Guide with no main character and a pre-determined sequence of ten scenes. In each scene, players take turns narrating what happens. The current narrator may use mechanics to draw from three sets of custom cards: Fate cards, Setting Element cards, and Resolution cards. The scenario is Warsaw in 1939 on the eve of the German encirclement- with players taking the roles of people on the very last train out of the city: the Conductor, the Quiet Man, the Engineer, the Fireman, the Adjutant, the Countess, the Old Man, and the Pretty Girl.
The Laundry
1st ed by Jason Durall, Gareth Hanrahan, John Snead (2010) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited Alephtar Games
A modern-day horror RPG based on the "Laundry Files" series of novels by Charles Stross. Players take on the roles of British intelligence agents tasked with fighting from supernatural horrors. It uses a variant of the Call of Cthulhu system.
Lawnmower Man
1st ed by Barry Nakazano, David McKenzie (1993) Leading Edge
A cyberpunk RPG based on the 1992 movie about a treatment of drugs and virtual reality which unlocks genius intelligence and psychic powers in a retarded man, loosely based on a novel by Stephen King. The system has an extremely simplified version of the combat rules in Phoenix Command, which is still quite complex. It includes cybernetic enhancement rules.
Legacy: War of Ages
1st ed by Brandon Blackmoor, Susan Blackmoor (1993) Black Gate Publishing
A modern-day occult RPG in the "Techno-Gothic" genre, about secret immortal beings the 21st century (in the style of the movie Highlander).
Legacy
1st ed by J.D. Frazer (1992) Discordian Games
A "hard science" sci-fi RPG.
Legacy
1st ed by David A. Feldt (1978) Legacy Press
A universal RPG system, which uses a complex skill system where the GM creates statistics for the civilization.
The Legacy of Zorro
1st ed by Mark Arsenault (2001) Gold Rush Games
A swashbuckling action game based on the popular series of books and film. This uses the "Instant Fuzion" game system, and is intended for beginning players. It includes four pre-made characters, an introductory adventure, and cut-out cardstock figures.
Legend
1st ed by Lawrence Whitaker, Pete Nash (2011) Mongoose Publishing
A generic fantasy RPG based on Mongoose's version of the RuneQuest rules.
Legend
1st ed by Jacob Kurzer, Chris Campbell (2011) Rule of Cool Gaming
A generic fantasy RPG using a streamlined variant of the D20 System from 3.5th edition D&D. The core classes are Barbarian, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Sage, Shaman, and Tactician. It uses standard attributes and resolution using a D20, but gives each class three distinct tracks of special abilities - with one gained each level. Skills are binary, with any trained skill getting a bonus equal to level.
Legendary Lives
1st ed by Kathleen Williams, Joe Williams (1990) Sage Lore Productions, Inc.
2nd ed (1993) Marquee Press
A fantasy-genre RPG, set in a light-hearted Celtic-flavored world thick with faeries. The system uses a universal Action Resolution Table (ART), included on the character sheet. You find the row for skill (modified by difficulty) and rolling percentile dice to find degree of success/failure (5 levels each). Character creation is largely random-roll with a choice of profession, developing a random "life-path" of the character's history.
Légendes
1st ed by Stéphane Daudier, Marc Deladerrière, Philippe Mercier, Jean Marc Montel, Guillaume Rohmer (1983) Jeux Descartes
Légendes des 1001 Nuits ed by Jean Marc Montel (1984)
Légendes Celtiques ed by Philippe Mercier, Stéphane Daudier, Guillaume Rohmer, Jean Marc Montel, Marc Deladerrière (1985)
Premières Légendes ed (1986)
De La Table Ronde ed by Anne Vetillard (1986)
Vallée des Rois ed by Christian Caroli (1987)
Des Cités ed by Didier Franque (1993) Antre du Dragon
A French-language historical fantasy RPG system, released as several games focusing on different time periods. "LÉgendes Celtique" was also released in English as "Celtic Legends". The original game has complex rules and focuses on very detailed historical/legendary background. "1001 Nights" also uses these rules. A simplified version of the rules ("Premières Légendes") was later released, which the later supplements use. The simplified version has 3 basic attributes, each of which has 3 sub-attributes. There are 8 Gifts, each of which govern a set of skills. Action resolution uses a d20. The official settings included "LÉgendes Celtique" (pre-Roman Celtic civilization); "LÉgendes de la Table Ronde" (Arthurian Britain); "LÉgendes Mille et Une Nuits" (based on 1001 Arabian Nights); and "LÉgendes de la Vallée des Rois" (ancient Egypt). There was also a third-party supplement for ancient Greece, "Légendes des Cités".
Legendmaker
1st ed by Howard I. Scott III (1998) Chaos Enterprises, Inc.
A traditional fantasy-genre RPG. It uses a percentile skill based system, also using Xd10 for damage and other rolls. Character creation is by random-roll attributes, and choice of race and class. Class (Fighter/ Thief/ Cleric/ Mage) determines your central skill -- increase in that skill brings you up a level which improves saving throws and hit points.
Legend of the Ages
1st ed by William WR Ozier (2010) self-published
A generic fantasy system, which includes rules on creating cultures and civilizations, original monsters, and major houses and guilds, as well as magical items and spells.
Legend of the Burning Sands
1st ed by Jed Carlton, Shawn Carman, Dan Comrie, Douglas Sun, Lucas Twyman, Brian Yoon (2008) Alderac Entertainment Group
A stand-alone variant of the Legend of the Five Rings game, set in an alternate desert region of that world. It details major factions such as the warlike Yodotai, the mystical Ashalan, and the scholarly Qabal. It includes a new magic system with dueling rules (ta-haddi) as well as rules for summoning and creating jinn.
Legend of the Five Rings
1st ed by John Wick, D. Williams (1997) Alderac Entertainment Group
2nd ed by Ree Soesbee (2000) Alderac Entertainment Group Wizards of the Coast
3rd ed by Rich Wulf, Shawn Carman, Brian Yoon, Seth Mason, Fred Wan (2005) Alderac Entertainment Group
4th ed by Shawn Carman, Robert Hobart, Jim Pinto (2010) Alderac Entertainment Group
A medieval fantasy-genre RPG, set in the world of Rokugan where clans struggle for dominance. The names, appearance, and other features are Japanese-based, but there are also European influences. The "five rings" are the elements of Air, Earth, Fire, Water, and Void which group the basic attributes. It uses a dice pool system where you roll a number of d10s equal to attribute + skill, keep a number equal to attribute, and sum them. This is modified: rolls of ten add an extra roll, and in contests you throw out dice less than the opposing attribute. Character creation is skill-based, with a choice of 7 clans and 2 professions: bushi (warrior) or shugenja (mage).
The Legend of Yore
1st ed by Brennan Taylor (1997) Galileo Games
A fantasy-genre RPG, which allows PC's of giants, goblins, and trolls as well as elves, dwarves, and humans. It uses a simple skill-based percentile system: roll under (skill * 5) + attribute. Character creation has random-roll of race and attributes, followed by selecting a career (1 of 30) and picking skills from that career's list.
Legend Quest
1st ed by John Josten (1991) Board Enterprises
2nd ed (1994)
A generic fantasy genre RPG system, including rules for magic and "mentalism", but no background material. It uses a simple skill-based percentile system (roll under attribute*10 + Skill*5) for all tasks. Character creation, however, is point-bought and time-consuming.
Legends of Anglerre
1st ed by Sarah Newton, Chris Birch, Marc Reyes, Tom Miskey, Mike Olson (2010) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited
An RPG based on a fantasy series of British comic books that appeared in the Starblazer Adventures series. It includes two settings: Anglerre and the Hither Kingdoms. Anglerre is a swords-and-sorcery setting, where the kingdom of Anglerre are stoic, salt-of-the-earth people at war with the neighboring kingdom of wizards, Suvethia. In the Hither Kingdoms, an alliance of men, elves and dwarves fell a thousand years ago, and only the city of Selantium now holds out against the forces of darkness. The game uses a variant of the FATE system (version 3.0) from Spirit of the Century, similar to the variant in Starblazer Adventures. Character creation is limited point-based.
Legends of Kralis
1st ed by Levi Davis (2005) Fantasy Makers Industries, LLC
A fantasy genre game with some science fiction elements, set on an original world ("Kralis"). There are fifteen races: Acires, Aelwyn, Ba-liyan, Centaur, Dwarves, Elves, Firbogs, Gnomes, Humans, Jakara, Kanus, Manax, Minotaurs, Sprites, and Trolls. The world is late Renaissance with the addition of magical war machines, airships, and related elements. It uses a percentile skill-based system (the "Talarius Gaming System"). Action resolution is roll under skill on d100 where successes (skill - roll / 10) must be greater than Target Successes. Character creation is limited point-based. Distribute 200 points plus racial modifiers among eight attributes: four Physical (Strength, Stamina, Agility and Perception) and four Mental (Intelligence, Wits, Willpower and Charisma).
Legends Walk!
1st ed by Tim Gray (2002) Silver Branch Games
An electronically-published superhero RPG set in a near-future world in the year 2020 where certain people have become empowered by creatures of popular myth. Each hero represents a single being from legend: a God like Thor or Athena; an Angel like Michael or Gabriel; a Hero like Hercules; or a Monster like Fenrir or a Spriggan. The setting is described, but the true reasons behind the event are left up to the group. It uses a dice-pool system, rolling a number of d6's based on skill + modifiers, where any result of 4-6 indicates a success. Character creation is limited-point based (spending points on Attributes, Skills, and Advantages) plus a selection of template, i.e. a pre-define mythic source which provides your powers. The core rulebook includes Greek, Norse, Celtic, and Angelic sources, plus there is a supplement for Aztec, Maya, Sumerian and Babylonian sources.
Lejendary Adventures
1st ed by Gary Gygax (1999) Hekaforge
A fantasy RPG, packaged in several volumes ("Lejendary Rules", "Lejend Master's Lore", and "Lejendary Earth"). It uses a fairly rules-lite percentile skill-based system. Character creation is point-bought attributes. Skills are picked and then ranked in order of importance -- the picks add to attributes, and then attributes and rank determine individual skill values. There are class-like packages ("Orders") which enhance your picks if you qualify.
Lemuria
1st ed by Anders Blixt, Krister Sundelin (2004) Rävspel
A Swedish-language action-oriented "dieselpunk" game, set on the lost continent of Lemuria in the 1930s. This is a sourcebook for use with the D20 Modern system, and is the first D20 game made in Swedish.
Leverage: The Role Playing Game
1st ed by Cam Banks, Rob Donoghue, Matt Forbeck, Laura Anne Gilman, Ryan Macklin, Clark Valentine (2010) Margaret Weis Productions
A modern-day espionage game based on the television series from the TNT network, where the player characters are a specialized group of con artists, criminals, and crooks who are trying to redeem themselves by using their skills to protect the victims of corporations, mobsters, and corrupt politicians. This uses a version of the Cortex System mechanics.
Liquid Crystal
1st ed by Ashok Desai (2006) Sane Studios
A post-apocalyptic mini-RPG set a hundred years after robot wars wiped the Earth clean. The survivors live with little technology in the city of New Olympus. The player characters are robots whose minds have been wiped clean, in the hope that they can help the struggling city - despite their violent history.
Little Fears
1st ed by Jason L. Blair, Greg Oliver (2001) Key 20 Publishing
Nightmare ed by Jason L. Blair (2009) FunSizedGames
An RPG of childhood terror, set in a world of bullies, curfews, tattle-tales, werewolves, vampires, and things much worse. The PC's are children below the age of 13, who have the gift of Innocence which monsters hunger for. Upon passing 13, they lose their Innocence and are safe from the monsters -- but they become blind to the terrors of their youth. The "Nightmare Edition" features a complete new system, the "Top 3" System.
Live System: Modernised OGL System
1st ed by James Desborough (2004) Postmortem Studios
An electronically-published universal RPG system, intended to be a more free-flowing variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D and D20 Modern. Character creation replaces classes with packages of skills and feats.
Living Legends
1st ed by Jeff Dee, Jack Herman (1999) Unigames
A superhero RPG, a 3rd edition / revision of the classic Villians and Vigilantes.
Living Steel
1st ed by Barry Nakazono, David McKenzie (1987) Leading Edge
2nd ed (1988)
A sci-fi post-apocalyptic RPG, set on an alien world called Rhand in 2349. Alien "Spectrals" assaulted the corrupt human Imperium, and invaded the isolated tourist world of Rhand. The invasion craft was destroyed, but chaos reigns after the devastation. The PC's are human champions equipped with power armor called "Living Steel", dedicated to restoring civilization. The game focuses on realistic powered-armor combat, using a version of the system from Phoenix Command. The second edition featured a simplified version of the rules, which is still quite complex.
Lone Wolf the Roleplaying Game
1st ed by August Hahn (2004) Mongoose Publishing
A fantasy genre RPG, based on the Lone Wolf series of gamebooks and novels. The original gamebooks were co-authored by Paul Barnett (aka John Grant) and Joe Dever. The game is set in the kingdom of Sommerlund, grandest nation on the world of Magnamund. There, Kai monks with mystical powers defend the land against the Darklords of the west. The RPG is officially set some 50 years before the plot of the gamebooks (wherein all but one the Kai monks are killed in a war with the Darklords). It is a standalone RPG, while the rules are a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. Combat has been made faster by the elimination of Attacks of Opportunity and Feats, and there is special magic appropriate to the setting.
Long Live the King
1st ed by Mark Rein•Hagen, Stewart Wieck, Dale Cook, John Dashler (2006) White Wolf
A strategic live-action role-playing game for five or more players, which uses cards and three sets of points (Gold, Status, and Favor). It is set in a generic historical kingdom where the prince is dead, and a new heir must be chosen by the ailing king. There are eight named characters: the King, Queen, Royal Bastard, Archbishop, Steward, Ambassador, Baron, and Treasurer. Each has a card with stats provided for it. The game is played with formal rounds for diplomacy and council.
Lord of the Rings Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Steven S. Long, Christian Moore, John Rateliff, Matt Forbeck (2002) Decipher
A fantasy RPG based on the novels by J.R.R. Tolkien. It uses a version of the "CODA" system (also used by Decipher's Star Trek RPG). Action resolution is by attribute + skill + 2d6 versus difficulty. Character creation uses random-roll attributes (with a point-bought option), and chosen skills -- taking 'picks' of skills from racial background and selecting an 'order' (i.e. warrior, wizard, rogue). There are also Edges and Flaws (advantages/disadvantages).
Lords of Creation
1st ed by Tom Moldvay (1984) Avalon Hill
A dimension-hopping game about characters rising to become masters of their own dimension.
Lords of Olympus
1st ed by The RPG Pundit (2012) Precis Intermedia Games
A diceless RPG using a variant of the system from Amber Diceless Role-playing, and set in a version of the world of Greek myth. The player characters are children of Olympian Gods, Titans, or Primordials - travelling between dimensions such as Olympus, Atlantis, and Hades. The core book includes many detailed listings of the divine family including many obscure deities and beings. Resolution uses a similar system of GM adjudication with four attributes (Ego, Might, Prowess, and Fortitude), but the resolution rules are written independently.
Lore: Origins
1st ed by Troye W. Gerard, Bryan P. Donihue, Jeremy L. Huffman, Daniel E. Beatty (2001) Lore Roleplaying
A small press fantasy-genre RPG with the usual elements of elves, dwarves, orcs, and dragons. It is not yet released.
Lost Roads of Lociam
1st ed by Rasmus Strand (1991) self-published
A fantasy RPG, set on the world of Lociam - populated by elves, dwarves, giants, and animal-peoples (the First People) as well as humans (the Second People). Both are locked in struggle with creatures of Chaos (the Third People). The rules are based on percentile skills for most activities, and binary skills for knowledges. There are eight attributes, including four physical (Strength, Dexterity, Speed, Constitution) and four mental (Wisdom, Perception, Charisma, Mana). Experience is gained on individual skills based on use. A self-publishing site is available at lociam.com.
Lost Souls
1st ed by Kathleen Williams, Joe Williams (1991) Sage Lore Productions, Inc.
2nd ed (1992) Sage Lore Productions, Inc. Marquee Press
A supernatural RPG of playing ghosts trying to reincarnate, fighting evil ghosts and other creatures to improve their karma. It uses a variant of the system from Legendary Lives. The system is percentile-based, with degree of success indicated by a universal chart printed on the character sheet. There are five degrees of failure (from Catastrophic to Poor) and five degrees of success (from Passable to Awesome). Character creation has many random rolls, but the key selections are profession in life and lost soul type -- which may be either rolled or chosen. Creation begins with generating appearance, then profession, then how you died, and then the type of ghost you become (which determines your powers). There are 22 types of ghosts, including Bansee, Doppelganger, Haunt, Shade, and Spook. There are also 12 attributes, each of which has 4 associated skills. Ghosts have "will-to-live" points, which when you run out of you have a chance to reincarnate. Experience is via karma, which grants powers as well as improving your luck in reincarnation.
'The Lost World: Jurassic Park' Role-Playing Game Book
1st ed by Greg Farshtey (1997) Putnam Publishing Group
This is a card-based RPG for young children (ages 7 and up). The book contains three interactive adventures, which use 24 punch-out cards. Some cards portray characters from the film, while others contain facts about dinosaurs or the Jurassic era. Each character has four attributes (agility, strength, perception, and mind) which are used with a d6 roll to determine action resolution.
Love in the Time of Seið
1st ed by Jason Morningstar, Matthijs Holter (2010) self-published
A low-prep, quick-playing story game that includes five pre-generated characters along with locations and events. It is set in a Norse-themed fantasy kingdom on the brink of ruin. The old King has no male heir, and he seeks to marry his daughter to the Earl of Gardarike - a rival kingdom to the East. It uses a version of the free rules system Archipelago II.
Luftwaffe 1946 Role Playing Game
1st ed by Jonathan M. Thompson (2003) Battlefield Press
An RPG set in alternate-history Europe of 1946, based on Ted Nomura's comic book series of the same name. It uses a variant of the Action! System.
Machineguns and Magic
1st ed by William L. McCord, Jr. (1992) M.G. Games
2nd ed (1994)
A fantasy RPG about modern-day soldiers stranded in a medieval fantasy world by some spacewarp. It includes an original magic system with 30 spells, where spellcasters can cast as many spells as they like until they fail a roll. The 1st edition has a paper cover, while the 2nd edition has the usual softcover and better art.
Macho Women With Guns
1st ed by Greg Porter (1988) self-published
3rd ed (1994) BTRC
4th ed by James Desborough (2003) Mongoose Publishing
A hilarious parody RPG which features the battle of "macho women with guns" against over-the-top post-apocalyptic strangeness. The background is that in the nineties, the world began to collapse due to "male chauvinist leadership". The fabric of society collapsed, the states and nations crumbled, and Hell itself vomited forth a plague of lawyers and tax collectors to ravage the land. The 3rd edition incorporates two sequels to the original: "Renegade Nuns on Wheels", and "Bat-Winged Bimbos from Hell". It uses a simple system of roll under skill on 3d6, with a hex-based combat system. It has point-based character creation, including ads/disads like "Look good in armor" and "Top-Heavy". The 4th edition was completely rewritten by a different author, and uses the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D.
Mach: The First Colony
1st ed by Michael Lange (1983) Alliance Publications Ltd.
A science fantasy RPG, in a universe where humankind in the 1980's is "rescued" from a pending supernova and deposited on an alien planet, which they share with 3 other refugee races. They are then left to fend for themselves with weapons smuggled in. The game takes place after 200 years of war and technical atrophy. PC's can be of one of the refugee races, native Machs or a very non-humanoid alien race who made it to Mach on their own with unknown intent. It uses a skill-based system, with attributes and races similar to AD&D. Experience is based on adventuring, practice, or study. Reviewed in "The Space Gamer" #69.
Maelstrom: The Turbulent Role-playing Game of Thieves, Rogues, Magick, and Mayhem
1st ed by Alexander Scott (1984) Puffin Books
2nd ed (2008) Arion Games
A historical RPG about life in 16th century England, in pocket book format (in a line of "Adventure Books", ISBN 0-14-031811-9). The system uses percentile rolls as well as d6's. It has limited point-bought character creation, with packages for chosen profession. The 10 attributes each has a base of 30, you could distribute 50 points among them plus bonuses from your profession package. Witchcraft was handled as semi-freeform Willpower roll vs difficulty, with an extensive chapter on herbs. The second edition was published electronically via RPGNow.
Maelstrom Storytelling
1st ed by Christian Aldridge, Seth Lindberg (1998) Hubris
A fantasy RPG of pseudo-science, Leonardan magic and gunpowder set in a different reality which constantly shifts as a magical storm passes over it. The system (" Story Engine") is a cinematic dice pool system which has no numerical stats. Instead, the size of the pool depends on the number of textual "descriptors" (like "strong") the character has that apply. Success is determined by the number of odd numbers rolls ("Odds") vs the difficulty.
Mage: The Ascension
1st ed by Stewart Wieck (1993) White Wolf
2nd ed (1995)
A modern-day game of secret magic, where magicians from nine rebellious traditions struggle against the Technocracy -- a group of magicians who are trying to control all magic within reality, enforcing the limits of mundane science for everyone except themselves. It uses a variant of the "Storyteller" system originally used in Vampire: The Masquerade. It has a magic system with effects in several broad spheres, where due to the Technocracy, magic is made more dangerous if the effects visibly break physical laws -- but are allowed if there is a plausible mundane explanation.
Mage: The Sorcerers Crusade
1st ed by Phil Brucato (1998) White Wolf
A companion RPG to Mage: The Ascension set in 1430 to 1550, prior to the founding of the Technocracy. The rules are similar, but the magic system is significantly altered to reflect the different mystic laws (i.e. "Paradox" is changed). In this time period, the "Daedalans" (predecessors of the Technocracy) are innovators who seek to change the old ways, with strong religious beliefs.
Magic Frontiers Explorer Edition
1st ed by Wyant (1999) Event Horizon Productions
A science fantasy genre RPG with no setting per se but provides support for both magic and advanced technology side-by-side. Character creation uses random-roll attributes, but assumes each character is from a unique race. Race is created by a number of selections of abilities and templates. Skills are based on character class. There are also rules for magic in three varieties (Arcana, Elementa, and Mindra) as well as robots and cyborgs and special powers.
Maid RPG
1st ed by Ryo Kamiya (2004) Sunset Games
"which you love" ed (2005) Sunset Games
1st English ed by Ryo Kamiya, Ewen Cluney (2008) Kuroneko Designs
A humorous Japanese-language RPG about women cleaning the house of a master where wacky events occur. There is no physical combat system, but there is a conflict system where the loser accumulates Stress points. When a maid has greater Stress than her Spirit rating, she has a Stress Explosion. Maids also gain points of Favor from the master, which can be used to boost rolls, reduce Stress, to raise attributes, or invoke random events. There are three charts of random events for Outer Space, Modern, and Fantasy -- including many game-changing events. There are two supplements: Koi Suru Maid RPG and Yume Miru Maid RPG. Koi Soru Maid RPG has an introduction and errata, rules for playing a head maid or butler, rules for generating a master, tables for designing a mansion, rules for "romance and enticement," comforting (to reduce someone else's Stress), costume changes (a table of 36 alternate costumes, each with a Favor cost and special rules), items (in a D666 table of 216 of them!), and a total of 13 different random event tables. Yume Miru Maid RPG is mostly a scenario collection, but it also has rules for complexes and apprentices, tables for two new settings (Old West and Old Edo), a second table of costume changes (including plugsuits, Gundam uniforms, and hero suits), and a weather table.
Manhunter
1st ed by Ramon P. Moore (1987) Kingslayer Publications
2nd ed (1993) Myrmidon
A sci-fi adventure RPG in a multi-species interstellar federation (the Aglio-Terran Planetary Defense System). It uses a complex system: skills are percentile rolls under rating, combat is (attack stat+d20) vs (defense stat+d20), with table-driven damage. Character creation is random-roll attributes and point-bought skills.
Man, Myth, and Magic
1st ed by Herbie Brennan (1982) Yaquinto
A mythic fantasy RPG ostensibly drawing from 4000 B.C. to 1000 A.D. Earth legends. The game mixes many elements from this wide period. Character nationality and class are determined randomly, so a party might have an African witch-docter, a Greek sybil, and an Oriental shaman. It uses a class-based percentile system, where you roll and add stat to beat 100. The basic game includes a starting adventure set in a gladiator school.
Manual of the Eternal Sages
1st ed by Scott J. Compton (1993) self-published
A small-press fantasy RPG, published as a spiral-bound book of photocopies. It uses a percentile system, with a complex tree structure of attributes.
Marauder 2107
1st ed by Christina Laird, Delbert Laird (1994) Maelstrom Hobby
A post-nuclear-apocalypse anime-genre sci-fi RPG, set in a chaotic Japan filled with Nomads, Newlords, a great Citystate and Breeders (humans mutated into creatures resembling both demons and conventional fantasy monsters).
Mars: A Roleplaying Game of Planetary Romance
1st ed by Gareth-Michael Skarka (2007) Adamant Entertainment
A retro science fantasy RPG based on the Barsoom stories of Edgar Rice Burroughs and other early sci-fi authors. It uses a variant of the D20 System as found in D20 Modern.
Mars Colony
1st ed by Tim C Koppang (2010) TCK Roleplaying
A sci-fi roleplaying game designed specifically for two players around a particular scenario, to be played out in 2-3 hours. It is set in a future where a Mars colony has been created by a coalition of Earth governments, which is now dying after years of incompetence and disaster. One player takes on the role of the colony's appointed savior, while the other player is responsible for all the various problems that are plaguing the citizens of Mars.
Marvel Superheroes
1st ed by Jeff Grubb, Steve Winter (1984) TSR
2nd ed (1988)
The first superhero RPG licensed from Marvel comics. This used a simple system based on a universal table and attributes rated in broad worded categories (from "Typical" to "Unearthly"). The complete original rules are available online at classicmarvelforever.com.
Marvel Superheroes Adventure Game
1st ed by Mike Selinker, Michele Carter, Bill Olmesdahl, Steven Schend, Steven Brown (1998) TSR
A superhero RPG on the same subject, but an unrelated system (the "SAGA" system). The system uses a special 96-card deck rather than dice. Each player has a hand of cards, and actions are resolved by attribute+(card) vs difficulty. Wounds reduce the size of your hand (so the number of cards you hold is also your hit points).
Marvel Universe Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Dan Gelber, Jeffrey Simons, Evan Jones (2003) Marvel Publishing Group
A superhero RPG set in the universe of Marvel Comics, unrelated to the two earlier RPGs published by TSR. It uses a diceless system, where players spend "stones" of effort out of a pool. Action resolution is by stat plus stones of effort vs difficulty. Character creation is point-based.
MasterBook
1st ed by Ed Stark, Bill Smith (1994) West End Games
A generic RPG system, packaged with various worldbooks but not as a standalone product. The system is a variant of the Torg system, using 2d10 instead of 1d20 on the bonus chart and a modified drama deck. Worldbooks include Indiana Jones (1994) Bloodshadows (1994), Tank Girl (1995), Necroscope (1995), Tales from the Crypt (1996), Species (1995), and Aden (1995).
Masters of the Universe
1st ed by L. Ross Babcock, Jack C. Harris (1985) FASA
A fantasy RPG/boardgame presented in comic book format, based on the animated children's TV series. It uses pre-generated characters ("He-man", "Teela", etc.) only.
Mean Streets
1st ed by Mark Bruno, Todd Downing (2002) Deep7
A film noir RPG, using the "XPG" rules system published in electronic PDF format. It is a very simple system designed to immediately jump into play. The default setting is New York City in the 1940's, during WWII. The basic game includes a sample adventure, "A Tangled Web".
Mecha
1st ed by Chris Perrin (2010) Heroic Journey Publications
A sci-fi RPG based on Japanese anime about giant robot combat. It has no single official setting, but the core book features three sample settings: a surreal post-modern setting (inspired by The Big O), a standard sci-fi setting (inspired by Gundam), and a tongue-in-cheek high school mecha setting. Game sessions are broken into short Episodes that take about a half hour. Each Episode starts with a role-playing scene centered on a single player who makes a roll, where success grants a bonus in the coming battle. This is followed by a mecha battle conducted on a bullseye map. If a player faces defeat, retreat is automatically successful unless the player chooses to risk their character's life.
Mecha Aces
1st ed by Anthony Ford (2005) ComStar Media, LLC
A mecha anime RPG built using a variant of the Fudge system. It includes rules for mecha treated as characters on a different scale from human characters.
Mechanical Dream
1st ed by Benjamin Paquette, Francis Larose (2002) SteamLogic Editions, Ltd
An "industrial fantasy" RPG, set on Kainaas, a circle of light nearly 30,000 miles in diameter surrounded by a mysterious black wall. There is a mix of modern technology for the elite, while in slums and far-flung villages life is still in the medieval stage. It uses a dice pool system where attribute determines the type of die rolled (d4,d6,...) and skill determines the number of dice. The highest roll is the result. Character creation is open point-based.
The Mechanoid Invasion
1st ed by Kevin Siembieda (1981) Palladium Books
2nd ed (1985)
A sci-fi game about invasion by evil aliens with robotic bodies. This introduced the basic Palladium RPG system, later used by Palladium Fantasy and a number of other games. It uses random-roll attributes and class-based character creation, with advancement based on levels. Action resolution is by d20 (combat and saving throws) or d100 (skills), similar to AD&D.
Mechwarrior
1st ed by L. Ross Babcock, Jordan Weisman, Walter H. Hunt, Evan Jamieson, William Keith, Patrick Larkin, Richard K. Meyer, Kevin Stein (1986) FASA
2nd ed by Brian Nystul, Lester W. Smith (1991)
3rd ed by Brian Nystul (1999)
"Classic Battletech RPG" ed (2004) FanPro
A sci-fi RPG in the world of the Battletech boardgame, set in a 31st century where constant wars are fought by giant robots ("mechs"). The 1st and 2nd editions focuses on PC's as pilots and crew of battlemechs, while the 3rd edition expands the scope. The 2nd edition system uses 2d6, roll over target number (based on attribute) minus skill. The 3rd ed system uses 2d10 + skill vs difficulty. Character creation is by a life path, choosing skills and rolling for random events for different stages. The 3rd edition was later reprinted by FanPro as the "Classic BattleTech RPG", since the title "MechWarrior" was used for a related collectible miniatures game.
Meddling Kids: An Introductory Role-Playing Experience
1st ed by Allysson Brooks (2004) Meddling Games Pandahead Productions
A humorous RPG inspired by "Scooby Doo" and similar cartoons from the 1970s. Character creation is based on picking one of 7 archetype: Jock, Fluff, Brain, Goof, Temper, Sidekick, Innocent. There are 4 attributes: Strength, Moves, Smarts, Health. Players spend 24 attribute points and 26 points on abilities. Resolution is based on 3d6 + stat + skill vs. difficulty. It has a non-lethal combat system, and various options for the genre such as a quirky "Wild Card" character and optional "Kids' Points" that can be spent by anyone in the group to modify rolls.
MEGA Role-Playing System
1st ed by Allon, Brakas (1987) Mega Games
An heroic fantasy RPG, English-language published in Norway. It uses a complex system with numerous tables. Players are required to write up a character background, and the GM then assigns skill development levels based on the background. It had a single adventure module: "Ogre Forest".
Meks 'n' Mekanoids
1st ed by Denton R. Elliot (1987) Doc's Games
A sci-fi mini-RPG from the publisher of Dinky Dungeons, published in a 3''x5'' ziplock bag(!). There were three supplements, all written by Stu Wagner: "Beasts 'n' Bots" (animal forms for robots), "Weapons Wastebucket" (new weapons and other features), and "Chaotic Combiners" (mega-robots formed from smaller robots).
Mekton
1st ed by Mike Pondsmith (1985) R Talsorian
Mekton II ed (1987)
Mekton Zeta ed by Mike Pondsmith, Mike MacDonald, Benjamin Wright (1995)
A far future sci-fi RPG, in the Japanese anime giant mecha genre. It includes a brief mecha-genre far-future setting (Algol) and GM notes on running anime adventures, but the dominant part is treatment of the mechs themselves. The first edition was predated by a earlier Mekton game in 1984 which was not really role-playing. Editions "II" and "Zeta" use a variant of the "Interlock" system, which is skill based with actions resolved by attribute+skill+d10 vs difficulty. Character creation is limited point-based, with a random number of points (distribute 10d10 points to attributes, skill points determined by your "Education" attribute). Various random-roll "life path" tables add background color to the character.
Melanda: Land of Mystery
1st ed by Lee McCormick, John Corradin (1980) Wilmark Dynasty
2nd ed (1981)
A fantasy genre RPG set in an original fantasy world. The character creation system has attributes determined by the character's childhood studies. The magic system has spells which are cast by combining runes, each of which has a different purpose: nouns, prepositions, and adjectives. The fewer number of words used, the better chance of success but the more general the effect. The more words used, the more precise the effect, but the less chance of success. It has a few supplements (including an adventure module) made before it went out of print.
Men in Black
1st ed by George Strayton, Nikola Vrtis (1997) West End Games
A humorous alien-conspiracy RPG based on the movie. The game background and source material concentrates on silliness and slapstick elements. It uses the "D6" system from the Star Wars game. It adds "Cue Cards", given to each player with an action or line of dialogue written on them. If the PC can do or say what's on the card in the context of the adventure, they get a bonus.
Merc
1st ed by Paul D. Baader, Walter Mark, Lawrence Sangee (1981) FGU
A military action RPG.
Merc: 2000
1st ed by Loren Wiseman (1990) GDW
Not a standalone RPG, but rather an alternative campaign supplement for Twilight: 2000, featuring a world where the big ugly nuclear war never came, but brushfire wars, rebellions and other minor conflicts are fought all over the world, thus offering plentiful employment for PCs.
Mercenaries, Spies, and Private Eyes
1st ed by Michael A. Stackpole (1983) Blade (a division of Flying Buffalo)
A generic modern-day mystery and espionage game. Uses a simple skill system with level-based advancement. Action resolution by attribute plus skill plus 2d6 (re-rolling doubles open-endedly) vs difficulty.
Messiah
Ashcan ed by Chris Perrin (2008) KNRPG Productions
A short GMless game where different factions vie for power in a world gone wild after the coming of the Messiah, playable in roughly 2 hours. Each player controls an entire faction, competing against each other and the Messiah (who no one controls) in a strategic contest.
The Metabarons Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Peter Schweighofer (2001) West End Games
A space opera RPG based on the French series of graphic novels written by Alexandro (El Topo) Jodorowsky and illustrated by Juan Gimenez. The series is a galaxy-spanning space opera focused on a clan of powerful warriors. The RPG uses the "D6Legend" variant of the D6 System. It uses special six-sided dice where 3-6 is a success. You roll dice equal to your stat, count the number of successes, and compare to the difficulty.
Metalface
1st ed by R. Wallace Garner (2001) Eternal Tempest
A scifi RPG set on a far-future Earth where people are able to transfer their souls into robotic bodies known as 'metalfaces.' Past wars have ravaged the planet and reduced the population, and free-enterprise now rises and battles for control of the solar system. The game uses a six-sided dice system and a free version of the rules can be downloaded in Adobe PDF format.
Metamorphosis Alpha: Fantastic Role-Playing Game
1st ed by James Ward, Brian Blume (1976) TSR
2nd ed by James Ward, Slade Henson (1994) TSR
3rd ed (2002) Fast Forward Entertainment
4th ed (2006) Mudpuppy Games
A sci-fi game set on a 30-mile long generation starship ("The Warden") gone awry. A radiation storm causes mutations to occur to its occupants creating outlandish mutated humans and animals. The concept was wandering around the interior encountering strange creatures in a dungeon-like way -- including many concepts that would later surface in Gamma World. The second edition in 1994 was a universe book of this setting for the Amazing Engine game system. The third and fourth edition use their own system, referred to as the 3d6 system. Resolution uses a universal table of attribute with difficulty to find a target number for a 3d6 roll. Combat also uses a table that compares weapon class number (from 21 to 3) and armor class number (from 21 to 2). Character creation is primarily random roll, with varying rules for robots, androids, and humans.
MetaScape
1st ed by Blake Mobley, David Webb, Anthony Pryor (1993) The Game Lords, Ltd.
A space opera RPG. Its background is the "GuildSpace" setting, which mixes far-future technology with medieval elements of sorcery, psionics, swordplay, knighthood, and evil supernatural villains. There are six character races, none of which is strictly human. Each has focuses in one special ability: psionics, the Sorce, psychosomatics, high-tech powered armor, bioware, and cybernetics. The base mechanic uses a "doubling die" which open-ends on a 16.
M-Force: Monster Hunting in the 21st Century
1st ed by Leighton Connor (2002) Hex
A modern-day monster-hunting RPG, set in an alternate Earth where horrific monsters have been around throughout history. The PCs are agents for a modern-day monster-hunting organization called M-Force, founded as a non-profit organization in 1952. The rules are based on Hex Games' QAGS system, adding character design rules, and skills. There are three attributes (Body, Brain, and Nerve) along with three traits (Job, Gimmick, and Weakness): all rated 1-10. Action resolution is to roll under attribute + skill on 1d20, while contests require rolling higher than the opponent's 1d20 roll but still under attribute + skill. It also includes a hero point mechanic (called "Yum-Yums").
Mhâr Fantasy RPG
1st ed by Greg Older (2008) Fool's Moon Entertainment
A fantasy genre RPG based around an original setting, the Kingdom of Anæland. It uses a straightforward system that handles resolution by rolling under skill plus modifiers on 1d20. Character creation is a point-buy system, including the option of flaws for additional points. Seven races are available: human, dwarf, gnome, halfling, goblin, Hood (fox-people) and Nicila (cat-people). Several pre-built character archetypes are provided. It includes a magic system, divided into faith (used by priests) and magic (used by wizards, alchemists, and spellweavers). Faith is more reliable but more structured, where each faith has a few rituals that are unique to it. Magic is more flexible but more dangerous.
Middle Earth Role Playing
1st ed by S. Coleman Charlton (1984) Iron Crown Enterprises
2nd ed (1993)
A game set in the world of J.R.R. Tolkien's fantasy series. The adventures are set prior to the trilogy, around the year 1640 of the Third Age. This is before Sauron had re-established himself at Dol Guldur in Mirkwood and the Dwarves had awakened the Balrog in Moria. It uses a simplified version of the Rolemaster mechanics: open-ended percentile die rolls, resolved on extensive tables.
Midian Dark Fantasy Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Golgotha Kinslayer (2003) Lost Souls Publishing
A dark fantasy genre RPG, where the PCs include humans, dwarves, elves, trolls, and gaijin (a sort of barbaric human). It uses a skill-based system, with optional classes purchased with skill points. Character creation is a mix of random-roll and point-based, including ads and disads. Action resolution uses 1d20.
Midnight at the Well of Souls
1st ed by Timothy R. Green (1985) TAG Industries
A sci-fi RPG based on the eponym Jack L. Chalker's novel series. It features 150 character races and a partial map of "Well World".
Midway City
1st ed by Eddy Webb (2005) Spectrum Game Studios Z-Man Games
An RPG set in a far future on a space colony 50 miles diameter where the dictator mandated that everyone live in what he calls "the Golden Age of humanity" -- meaning pre-World War II America. The dress, speech and technology are strictly regulated by the government to conform to this. This has been the status quo for roughly 120 years, and most people just accept what is going on and lead their normal lives out. Besides normal humans there are aliens (the Kyrhee), rare psychic half-breed aliens (known as "Gazers"), androids (known as "Blanks"), and mutants (known as "Flips"). Further, wounded people are sometimes given cyberware replacements. It uses a variant of the rules from Cartoon Action Hour. Character creation features an open-ended system for designing special abilities including steelware, flips, and psychic powers. Action resolution uses stat + 2d6 vs difficulty.
Millenium's End
1st ed by Charles Ryan (1992) Chameleon Eclectic
2nd ed (1993)
A techno-thriller RPG, in the style of novels by Michael Crichton and Tom Clancy. It uses a percentile skill-based system. The damage system uses a transparent overlay on silhouette figures for hit location, and a table which includes determines blood loss and stun from location, damage type, and amount.
Mindjammer - The Roleplaying Game
Fate Core ed by Sarah Newton (2014) Mindjammer Press Modiphius Entertainment
A transhuman science-fiction RPG setting. The first edition is a setting book released in 2010 for the FATE-based Starblazer Adventures RPG. The second edition is a stand-alone game using the Fate Core rules. The setting takes place after thousands of years of expansion from Earth to other systems via slower-than-light colony ships. The New Commonality of Humankind is using faster-than-light planeships to find the lost colonies and bring them back into the transhuman community. Character types include humans, xenomorphs (uplifted non-human species), and synthetics (sentient copies of personalities within the virtual reality Mindscape).
Mini Six
Bare Bones ed by Phil Morris, Ray Nolan (2009) AntiPaladin Games
A universal system based on the open-license version of West End Games' D6 System. Character creation is limited point-bought, spending 12 dice among the four attributes (Might, Agility, Wit and Charm); and 7 dice on skills and special abilities (called Perks). Resolution is by rolling d6s equal to attribute plus skill, and comparing the total to the difficulty. The "Bare Bones" edition includes brief vehicle and magic rules.
Misery Bubblegum
1st ed by Anthony Lower-Basch (2009) Muse of Fire Games
A short-term (30-60 minutes) roleplaying game about high school relationships, contained entirely in a custom deck of cards - such as "Need for Authority - Discard this card and the GM narrates a decision that needs to be made".
M.I.S.S.I.O.N.
1st ed by Ernest T. Hams (1982) Kabal Gaming Systems
A modern espionage RPG, using a complex system and including detailed floorplans. It includes a secret base design system where the GM spends a fixed budget of money on guard dogs, steel doors, laser eyes, guards, etc. The PC's then attempt to break into the installation and get to the protected secret. The basic game includes seven 17.5" x 23" full-color maps and four 15.5" x 23" building interiors.
Misspent Youth: A sci-fi game of teenaged rebellion
1st ed by Robert Bohl (2010) self-published
A storytelling game of playing teenagers rebelling against authority in a player-defined future. The setting is collectively created by the players, including defining The Authory - the antagonist. Each play session is broken into seven scenes. It uses a special conflict resolution system where players roll 2d6 and claim that number on the Conflict Map, where possible GM numbers are defined by what scene it is. If a player rolls an already-claimed number, they win - but if they hit a GM-controlled number they lose.
Mistborn Adventure Game
1st ed by Brandon Sanderson, Alex Flagg, Patrick Kapera, John Snead (2011) Crafty Games
A fantasy steampunk RPG based on the novel series by Brandon Sanderson, set in a region called Skadrial of the dystopic Final Empire - controlled for the last thousand years by a dictator with divine powers. The player characters are thieving "Crews" who use magical metallurgic arts. It uses an original dice pool system, where action resolution is by rolling up to ten d6s (based on stats) and looking for the highest match from 1 to 5. Rolled 6s or stats above ten give nudges, where a nudge can be spent for a +1 to margin of success or 3 nudges can be spent for an additional action. Character creation is limited point-based, assigning a strong, average, and weak area to each of Powers, Attributes and Influences.
Mist-Robed Gate
1st ed by Elizabeth Shoemaker, Shreyas Sampat (2008) Summerbird
A martial arts action RPG based on modern Chinese wuxia films. It uses game mechanics involving a prop knife that can be in one of four states: covered, sheathed, open, and bloody. In play, players fill out character cards, and then take turns framing scenes. The player framing a scene either fills out a new set card or chooses one that is already filled out. The knife begins covered, and there is little conflict in scenes. When the knife is sheathed, players can hand it to other players, and they have to respond by entering wirework, escalating (making the knife open), or passing it back to present the same options. When it is open, a player can make explicit demands when passing the knife, and the target can respond by entering wirework, meeting the demand (and putting the knife down), elaborating the demand and passing it to someone else, or stabbing another player's character sheet (making the knife bloody). The character whose sheet is stabbed will die by the end of the scene. The player can stab another character, do what was asked, or enter wirework.
Mob Justice
1st ed by Malcom Craig (2006) Contested Ground Studios
A game of modern crime, set amidst mafia violence in America during the time of Prohibition (the 1920s). It uses a playing-card based system where you assemble poker hands after drawing a number of cards based on skill. In addition, each player has "story chips" which can be used to manipulate the scene and bet on success. Character creation is limited point-based. Two key stats, Reputation and Stature, are chosen freely. There is also a Loyalty rating and a Code which has both a numerical rating and a description (such as "All of the crew on my jobs come back alive"). There are also broad skills bought using points.
Modern 20
1st ed by Charles Rice (2008) RPG Objects
An electronically-published standalone system based on D20 Modern. The variant aims to make the base system smoother and faster-playing. It replaces the Basic, Advanced and Prestige Classes with six Core Classes. The skill list has been changed, along with new rules for backgrounds, occupations, and hobbies. Wealth is used, but is not used to roll wealth checks. Critical hits are replaced by a hit location system that modifies damage.
Monkey, Ninja, Pirate, Robot: the Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Chad Underkoffler (2004) Atomic Sock Monkey Press
A tongue-in-cheek RPG based on a board game where cartoon-like characters try to foil the plots of cow-napping aliens, gain Mojo, and lay their hands on the all-powerful sweet, sweet Uranium! Mojo is the peculiar power of being cool and funkily awesome, and is used to be cool, and gained by being cool -- as well as by eating uranium (naturally). The game uses a variant of the Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) system introduced in Dead Inside. Character creation is by choosing race, a Goal, 2 to 4 freeform keywords which give bonuses, and a weakness. Action resolution is by 2d6 + bonus vs difficulty.
Monsterhearts
1st ed by Joe McDonald (2012) Buried Without Ceremony
A modern-day horror RPG inspired by teenage dramatic stories such as Stephanie Meyer's Twilight, using rules adapted from Apocalypse World. Each PC is an archetypal monster with its own playbook of distinct Moves - including Vampire, Werewolf, Witch, Ghost, etc.
Monster Horrorshow
1st ed by J.H. Brennan (1987) Armada
A humorous horror RPG, written by the British author of the GrailQuest and DemonSpawn fantasy adventure books. The GM is called the "WereWizard", and must qualify for the position by passing through a solo adventure entitled the "Labyrinth of Squat". The book includes a simple system, monster cards, and the adventure.
Monster Island: The Game of Giant Monster Combat
1st ed by Bruce Harlick, Patrick Sweeney (2002) Firefly Games
A miniatures/role-playing game of giant monster combat.
Monsters and Other Childish Things
1st ed by Benjamin Baugh (2007) Arc Dream Publishing
A horror RPG about kids who each have a monster that does things for them. It uses a simplified variant of the One-Roll Engine rules found in Wild Talents and Godlike. As in other games, the d10 dice pool is used to resolve conflicts, looking for number of matching faces. Character creation is limited point-based. There are five attributes (Feet, Wits, Hands, Guts, and Attention) and related skills. Character also have rated relationships, which could be to parents, friends, or even stuffed animals. Lastly, they create their monster according to another limited point system.
Monsters & Slayers
1st ed by Clifford Raymond Fagan (1991) Atlantis Enterprises
An RPG set in a mythic version of the British Isles in 527 A.D. (with faeries and monsters). It uses a d6 based system: roll 3d6 under attribute, or roll 2d6 under 8+mods for combat. Characters have 7 attributes (Strength, Endurance, Dexterity, Intelligence, Luck, Persuasiveness, and Attractiveness).
Monsters! Monsters!
1st ed by Ken St. Andre (1976) Flying Buffalo
A fantasy RPG spin-off from Tunnels and Trolls. This is a traditional fantasy game reversed with players play the monsters fighting human heroes.
Monte Cook's World of Darkness
1st ed by Monte Cook, Luke Johnson, Sean K. Reynolds (2007) White Wolf
A modern dark fantasy/horror RPG, a variation of the World of Darkness setting where extra-dimensional horrors known as the Inconnu opened a gate hundreds of miles wide in the central United States. Now one year later, the U.S. has collapsed into dealing with its internal problems, and horrors stalk the fringes. The Inconnu create vampires, werewolves, and demons -- while there are also mages and the Awakened (extraordinary humans). It uses a rules variant based on the D20 system, where character type (such as vampire or werewolf) functions as both a race and a class.
Montsegur 1244
1st ed by Frederik J. Jensen (2009) Thoughtful Games
A storytelling game where players take characters from the historical siege of Montsegur where the sect of Cathars were assaulted as heretics by forces backed by the Catholic Church. It uses a diceless system of narration rules, where play is divided into a number of predefined turns leading up to the inevitable defeat of the Cathars, where each character must choose whether to burn themselves alive (as many historical Cathars did). There are a number of special cards that define elements to potentially include in the story.
Moros Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Jurjen Stellingwerff (2006) self-published
A fantasy genre RPG using a simple dice pool system. It is set in a medieval world, where mystical powers can be obtained easily but has side effects and is often illegal. The book is self-published via print-on-demand service Lulu.com. An earlier free version is available on a Geocities site.
Morpheus
1st ed by Devin Durham (1990) Rapport Games Crunchy Frog
A virtual reality RPG set in the near-future, where PC's are players in Morpheus Mind Park virtual reality games. Characters have 4 attributes (Imagination, Confidence, Ego, and Reputation), 3 skills (Reality Control, Accuracy, and Defense), and various virutal "powers" (which include more regular skills). You have a pool of dream points, which can be used to buy new powers - even in mid-play. It uses a percentile resolution system, which is slightly math-heavy (i.e. damage = (100% + (Attack - Defense) * 10%) * Xd10).
The Morrow Project
1st ed by Kevin Dockery, Robert Sadler, Richard Tucholka (1980) Timeline, Inc.
2nd ed (1980)
3rd ed (1983) Timeline, Inc. Abacus Dimensions
A realistic post-apocalyptic RPG. The PC's are agents deliberately frozen to rebuild the world after nuclear war, as part of a private project by Bruce Edward Morrow (aka "The Morrow Project"). However, something went wrong with the project mechanisms, and the PC's wake up alone 150 years after World War III. This game has a lot of attention paid to detail and hardware, reflecting the survivalist genre. The system is combat-focused, with other issues covered only after the 3rd edition. cf. the Morrow Project home.
Mortal Coil
1st ed by Brennan Taylor (2006) Galileo Games
A modern fantasy role-playing game inspired by Miyazaki's film "Spirited Away" and Neil Gaiman's comic "Sandman". It allows a range of fantasy backgrounds. It has a diceless mechanical system, where players spend from four pools of tokens: Action, Passion, Power, and Magic. Characters have four attributes (calls "Faculties") named Power, Grace, Wits, and Will; as well as player-defined aptitudes like "Barfly". The mechanics work by bidding tokens on conflicts.
Mortal Combat
1st ed by David John Morris, Steve Foster, Andrew Murdin (1979) Waynflett House Ltd (UK)
A generic "historical or fantasy" RPG rules system (softcover booklet, 64 pages). Nine attributes: Strength, Constitution, Manual Dexterity, Agility, Speed, Looks, Intelligence, Learning and (magical) Talent. Advancement is level-based. Magic works with spell points and success chance for spells, organised in 8 spell levels, around specialties : Alchemy, Antiquities & Languages, Demonology and Artificery.
The Mountain Witch
1st ed by Timothy Kleinert (2005) Timfire Publishing
A role-playing game with a built-in adventure: a group of ronin samurai are hired to assault and kill O-Yanma, the dreaded Mountain Witch of Mount Fuji. It uses a simple resolution system, with player-created Fates for their characters and a system of Trust which focuses play on trust and betrayals among the PCs.
The Mouse Guard Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Luke Crane, David Petersen (2008) Archaia Studios Press
Boxed Set ed (2011)
A medieval roleplaying game adapting the anthropomorphic comic book series of the same name. The setting is the Mouse Territories, a collection of three dozen or so mouse settlements loosely unified under a Matriarch. The Matriarch acts as head of the Mouse Guard, a group of idealistic knight errants who maintain the roads and deal with external threats. While there are dangerous wild animals ranging from crows to snakes, the only other intelligent creatures are the bordering weasels. It uses an original dice pool system related to Burning Wheel. Resolution is by rolling d6s equal to stat, with bonuses dice for gear, help, or applicable knowledge skills ("wises") - every result of 4 or higher is one success. This is modified by spending Fate and Persona points, or activating traits. It has a unified conflict resolution mechanic similar to BW's Duel of Wits - used for arguments, chases, fights, journeys, etc. Each side generates a starting score, or Disposition, and then every round, each side chooses three actions in secret, continuing until one side or the other is reduced to zero disposition. The PCs are always members of the Guard, generated by a simple step-by-step process of selecting rank, age, birthplace, and so forth.
MSF High RPG
1st ed by Joseph Fanning (2007) self-published
A humorous anime-inspired RPG set in MSF Highschool, a training ground for teenage superheroes, including both alien and magical races. The book is self-published via print-on-demand service Lulu.com.
MSG
executive ed by Wood Ingham, Becky Lowe, Benjamin Baugh (2008) Firebird, Ltd.
A satirical rotating-GM RPG about corporate marketing and the rat race, where the player characters are company representatives (reps). Each turn, one player plays The Company trying to crush the reps. Character creation includes choosing to be Freelance or an Asset, along with picking expertises, perks, relationships, two attributes (Compassion and Self), and a "Unique Selling Point." The players create their company as a group, then play through a series of situations in the boardroom. After everyone has taken a turn as GM, the player with the most resources wins and gets to narrate the conclusion.
MuggerHunt
1st ed by Kevin Dockery (1983) Firebird, Ltd.
A light-hearted solitaire game -- not really an RPG -- about unting down muggers in urban "game preserves". The only "attribute" of hunters/muggers is what they are armed with.
Multiverser
1st ed by E.R. Jones, M. Joseph Young (1997) Valdron Inc.
2nd ed (2000)
A dimension-hopping RPG where players play themselves with the discovery that they reincarnate in a new universe / scenario upon death (via personal energy known as "scriff"). The skills are divided into "biases": Technology / Psionics / Magic / Body. These are also the categories of rating dimensions (i.e. some universes are high-magic, low-technology).
Munchkin RPG
1st ed by Andrew Hackard, Steve Jackson (2003) Steve Jackson Games
A humorous parody of D&D and other fantasy RPGs based on the card game "Munchkin" card game. It uses the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. Complete rules are not provided: basic rules for character creation, combat, and other systems refer to the D&D Players Handbook.
Murphy's World
1st ed by Kevin Davies, David Brown (1995) Peregrine
A humorous RPG about the world where the junk of many universes collects, intended particularly for characters from other game universes to drop in for light-hearted adventures.
Musha Shugyo
1st ed by Luca De Marini (2015) Acchiappasogni
A martial arts game, set in a flexible setting including both modern and ancient elements.
Mutant Chronicles
1st [Swedish] ed by Magnus Seter, Henrik Strandberg, Nils Gulliksson, Michael Stenmark, Jerker Sojdelius, Stefan Thulin, Fredrik Malmberg (1993) Target Games
1st [English] ed by Matt Forbeck, Paul Beakley (1993) Target Games Heartbreaker Games
2nd ed (1996)
Year Zero ed by Tomas Härenstam (2014) Modiphius Entertainment Modiphius Entertainment Fria Ligan
A techno-fantasy RPG and miniatures system from Sweden. It is set in a distant future where Earth has been destroyed, and the solar system is colonized by soulless megacorps. A discovery on Pluto unleashes "The Darkness", which makes computers go crazy and throws the solar system into chaos. The fanatical "Brotherhood" arose to resist the taint of "Dark Symmetry" in an Inquisition-like manner -- later leading the crusade when a tenth planet was found, unleashing a horde of "Necromutants" which nearly wiped out humanity.
Mutant City Blues
1st ed by Robin D. Laws (2008) Pelgrane Press
A near-future police RPG set in a future where ten years ago, 1% of the population gained mutant powers such as flight, telepathy, and energy bolts. The PCs are members of the police Heightened Crime Investigation Unit that investigates crimes in the mutant community. It uses a version of the "GUMSHOE" system that first appeared in The Esoterrorists. It uses diceless point-spending to resolve investigative skills, and die rolls modified by points for core skills. Character creation
Mutant Future
1st ed by Daniel Proctor, Ryan Denison (2008) Goblinoid Games
A post-apocalyptic science fantasy RPG, in the style of the Gamma World game and similar games of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Player characters types include pure human, android, mutant human, mutant animal, and even mutant plant!
Mutants & Masterminds
1st ed by Steve Kenson (2002) Green Ronin Publishing
A generic superhero RPG. The rules are a standalone system based on the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D. It includes a point-based character creation system and an assortment of feats, super-feats, and powers. The basic rulebook includes 12 "ready to play" hero templates, aloing with sample villians and an introductory adventure. The damage system is streamlined to require only a d20. Damage is handled by a saving throw against the damage value. Failing accumulates "hits" which incur penalties, while failing the save by 5 or more can stun or knock unconcious an opponent.
Mutazoids
1st ed by Ken Whitman (1989) Whit Productions
2nd ed (1991)
3rd ed by Moses "Wolfy" Wildermuth (2003) MT Enterprises, LLC
A post-apocalyptic RPG, set in the year 2073, sixty years after the world was swept by the accidental release of the man-made plague virus. The government is the "Second Republic", which suppresses the mutant majority, with political and racial overtones. The PC's are "Enforcers" who hunt the dangerous mutants ("mutazoids"). The system uses 2d6 roll vs stat on a universal table. Character creation is by random-roll attributes, and semi-random lifepath approach for skills.
My Life With Master
1st ed by Paul Czege (2003) Half-Meme Press
A horror RPG where the PCs are all deformed minions of an evil, demented genius -- in the vein of Igor or Quasimodo. It uses a set of strict rules on the dramatic progression of the story, which depends on the stats and rolls made. Each minion character has two descriptive traits: "More than Human" and "Less than Human". There are also three numeric traits: Self-Loathing, Weariness, and Love (though Love always starts at zero).
Myriad: A Universal RPG System
Extended ed by Ashok Desai (2006) Sane Studios
A universal RPG system designed to be incomplete, with some assembly required by the GM and players, putting together various optional parts. There are four core attributes: Power, Grace, Intellect and Spirit. It includes several options for character creation, including limited point-bought, random-roll, and template-based. Resolution is by rolling d6s equal to attribute, adding skill level to the highest die, and comparing the total to difficulty or opposed roll. The basic system (74 pages) is released under the Creative Commons License, with a free PDF available. The print version is "extended" with additional material, including using stealth as a form of conflict, mass battle rules, a large selection of new SFX, and an additional chapter on designing your own game setting.
Mystery Men
1st ed by John Stater (2011) self-published
A simple superhero RPG based on the Swords & Wizardry system by Matt Finch. It uses character classes and levels, with the three classes being Adventurer, Sorcerer, or Scientist. It includes over 200 superpowers, with most being adapted versions of fantasy genre spells. Resolution is by adding attribute + 1d20 and comparing to either 10 + opposing stat or calculated Defense Class (for combat). Released under Wizards of the Coast's Open Game License.
Mystic Forces
1st ed (2000) Positive Roleplaying
A fantasy RPG, set on an original world ("Oryathar"). The PC's are "Shinkai" who have been granted mystic powers by the Light to battle the Shadow which threatens the world. There are five races: the telepathic Brightlings, the stout and durable Grak, the agile and long-armed Loremek, the cat-eyed Valkin, and the giant and stone-skinned Warlum.
Mythic Role Playing
1st ed by Tom Pigeon (2003) Word Mill Publishing
An universal improvisational game, which has rules for spontaneously generating adventures. It uses parameters determined at the start, combined with randomly determined answers to yes/no questions. It is designed to be playable as a standalone RPG or also as a supplement for GM-less play using other RPG rules.
Mythic Russia: heroism and adventure in the land of the Firebird
1st ed by Mark Galeotti (2006) Firebird Productions
A standalone fantasy RPG, using the HeroQuest engine in the setting of the ancient Russia of history, legend and folktale. The setting is a cinematic one where the PCs are rare magical heroes. All magic is based on theism in HeroQuest, with a single Otherworld common to both pagan and Christian worship. Religion is a pastiche of paganism and Christianity. For example, one character might worship Volos the cattle god, and argue with his brother, who insists on calling him Saint Vlasii -- while both agreeing on many details. The game includes extensive notes on the body of myth and folklore including many villains and heroes, as well as maps, an introductory scenario, and many adventure seeds.
Mythworld: Realistic Fantasy
1st ed by Paul Cardwell, Jr. (1986) Hippogriff Publications
A generic fantasy RPG aimed mainly at playing in times of myth -- primarily late bronze age to early iron age. It uses a detailed rule system. The original was published as a boxed set with six books (Rules, Bestiary, Outfitter, Skills, Spells, and Robber's Cave), along with five 4-page character sheets and three dice (d6, d8, d20).
Nameless Streets
1st ed by Charles Green (2010) Alephtar Games
A paranormal detective RPG set in modern-day Portland, Oregon - developed as a setting and variant of the HeroQuest system created by Issaries, Inc. It includes full keywords for various supernatural creatures including vampires and werewolves, to lamia and djinn. It also adds rules for five different magical traditions, including Witchcraft, Necromancy, and Wizardry.
Narnia - Das Rollenspiel
1st ed by Ulrich Drees, Oliver Plaschka (2008) Brendow Verlag
A German-language fantasy role-playing game set in the world of Narnia, based on the book series by C.S. Lewis. It uses a simple though not minimal set of rules aimed at beginners.
The Nearside Project
1st ed by Stephen Herron, Tom Bisbee, Barry O'Connor (1996) Nearside Games
A sci-fi RPG of parallel earths, set among 13 parallel dimensions of the modern world caused by unknown forces. The "variants" (as the dimensions are called) are traveled by people known as "Nearsiders", who have a neural anomaly allowing them to find and penetrate the doorways between variants.
Nebuleon SF RPG
1st ed by William Corrie III (2004) HinterWelt Enterprises
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG with a percentile skill-based system (the "Iridium System"). It is set in the RFW (Republic of Free Words) which establishes regular diplomatic ties, encourages trade, keeps shipping lanes open, protects traders, and maintains peace. Alongside it, the Andromedaen Council of Guilds, the Grou-Lynn Empire, and the Kolkesh Empire seek to strengthen the galaxy from the threat of the Jiran Theocracy. Character creation is random-roll attributes (best of 3d20), followed by choosing a class which influences skills.
Neighborhood
1st ed by Kristan J. Wheaton (1982) Wheaton Publications
An RPG where the PC's are kids role-playing fairly normal childhood adventures.
Nemesis: A Perfect World
1st ed by Malcolm Harris (2001) Maximum CNG
A post-apocalyptic superhero RPG, set in the modern world after a supernatural disaster (the "Nemesis event") which gave certain people supernatural powers. It uses a skill-based system. Action resolution uses 2d6. Character creation is either an original character, or creating a version of yourself with powers. There are six templates for superpowers.
Nephandum
1st ed by Massimo Bianchini, Mario Pasqualotto (2005) Asterion Press
1st [English] ed by Massimo Bianchini, Mario Pasqualotto (2007) Mongoose Publishing
An Italian-language dark fantasy / horror RPG, using the D20 system, later translated into English and released by Mongoose Publishing. Set in a fantasy world where five dark cosmic entities rule over five different aspects of fear: Disease, Madness, Blood, Darkness and Savagery.
Nephilim
1st [French] ed by Fabrice Lamidey, Frederic Weil (1991) Multisim
2nd [French] ed (1992)
1st [English] ed by Fabrice Lamidey, Sam Shirley, Greg Stafford, Frederic Weil (1994) Chaosium
An occult RPG where characters are immortal creatures that awaken in human form. First edition was French-language, later translated into English.
NeverWorld
1st ed by Erin Laughlin (1996) ForEverWorld
A fantasy-genre system, focusing on a variety of fantasy races and cultures. The world is one where the various races are closed off from each other, casting the PCs as explorers. It uses a skill-based system with complex character generation.
New Gods of Mankind
1st ed by Richard Leon (2007) Dark Skull Studios
A fantasy genre game where the player characters are minor new gods who have latched onto a struggling human tribe in a largely Bronze Age fantasy world. The humans' worship of the new gods empowers them with Belief that allows them to stay in existence and perform miracles. Humans are threatened by warlike Salamanders and rampaging Jurelian Giants, but live at peace with the taciturn Gnomes, water-dwelling Undines, and knowledgeable Sylphs. There are also Light and Dark breeds of Wood Nymphs, that live in forests and generally ignore humans. Resolution uses a step-die dice pool, where players generally roll d6s unless incarnate in a mortal form, when they roll d10s for most actions except skills in their domain that they roll d12s for. The new gods and their human worshipper face various threats including elder races and their gods, god-like beings that feed on fear called Leviathans, and rival gods of humanity. Character creation is point-based, with each new god getting 50 belief points and 100 followers. Player character also pick one primary domain - such as Birth, Death, Adventure, or Magic - and three secondary Domains such as Intrigue, Lightning, Cats, or Gambling. Advancement is based on getting Belief Points per year equal to 20% of the number of worshippers for that god.
Nexus: Live Action Roleplaying
1st ed by Rick Dutton, Walter O. Freitag (1994) Chaosium
A live-action RPG game/scenario intended for 44 players and 5 referees. The scenarios is about aliens who manage to land their meeting right in the middle of a sci-fi convention, and accidentally mistake the con-goers for their comrades. The book comes complete with characters, handouts, and a brief rules set.
Nexus: The Infinite City
1st ed by Robin D. Laws, Jose Garcia (1990) Daedalus Games
An interdimensional action game, set in a city which extends across dimensions and constantly changes its geography and connections. It uses a precursor to the system in Feng Shui, with stat+1d6-1d6 resolution and a point-bought character creation system.
Ngenesis: the Trials of Flesh
1st ed by Justin Killam, Damien Hunt (2008) Apocrypha Studios
A post-apocalyptic science fantasy RPG set in the far future where the player characters are modern gods called Ngen reawakened after ages of sleep to survive through the plagues of the apocalypse. The Ngen first appeared in the near future, using a mystic energy called the Pyur to become rulers of a thousand-year golden age. Then creatures of chaos and darkness called Hrongyr appeared, spreading contagion. The Ngen and their custodians retreated underground and went into hibernation to wait out the plagues. The player characters are Ngen newly awakened after an unspecified time, their custodians now missing. The game uses a dice pool system called the Providence system. In resolution, the player rolls a number of dice equal to skill rating (0 to 6) of a type based on attribute rating (from d2 to d12). The result is the highest die, modified by +1d6 (Fate Die) and -1d6 (Doom Die) and any modifiers for difficulty or other circumstances. A positive result is a success. The result is used as level of success, such as for damage in combat. There are 12 attributes, divided into 4 each for Mind, Body, and Soul. There are also about 50 skills divided among controlling attributes.
Nightbane
1st ed by C.J. Carella (1995) Palladium Books
A modern horror game about supernatural shape-changers who can appear human, but are really creatures from another dimension (the "Nightlands"). PCs are "Nightbane" who fight to protect humanity from the "Nightlords" who are poised to take over the world, with human sorcerors and vampires somewhere in the mix. The system is a variant of the Palladium Fantasy RPG system. It was formerly known as "Nightspawn" but the name was changed for legal reasons.
NightLife
1st ed by Bradley K. McDevitt et al. (1990) Stellar Games
2nd ed (1991)
3rd ed (1992)
A modern-day horror game where the characters are various monsters: vampires, werewolves, zombies, etc.
Night of the Ninja: Reality Role Playing Game
1st ed by Tom Wall, Sandford Tuey (1986) IIE / Mastery Manual
A martial-arts RPG in a modern-day setting, with an emphasis on combat. The opponents are terrorists and organized crime.
Night's Black Agents
1st ed by Kenneth Hite, Robin D. Laws (2012) Pelgrane Press
A modern-day supernatural spy thriller RPG, combining inspiration from movies like Ronin and The Bourne Identity with classic supernatural horror like Bram Stoker. It uses a variant of the GUMSHOE that first appeared in The Esoterrorists - expanded to include more combat options along with chases and high-tech espionage operations.
Night Witches
1st ed by Jason Morningstar (2015) Bully Pulpit Games
A historical RPG about the Soviet 588th Night Bomber Regiment in World War Two, which consisted entirely of women. It uses rules adapted from Vincent Baker's Apocalypse World. Play alternates between day and night scenes, with different Moves available for each.
Nine Worlds
1st ed by Matt Snyder (2004) Chimera Creative
A science fantasy RPG with an original setting, a fantasy solar system with elements of Greek mythology where aetherships traverse the swirling mists of space between the nine planets, each ruled by the Eternals (Aphrodite ruling Venus, etc.). The rules use playing cards, where each player has a deck of cards to draw from. Characters draw based on their Arete or Hubris attribute, with bonuses for related Muses; then select a number of cards of the same suit. Winning conflicts results in the accumulation of Tricks.
Ninja Burger: The Role-playing Game
1st ed by Michael Fiegel, Kenshiro Aette, Christopher O'Neill (2001) 9th Level Games 9th Level Games Aetherial Forge
2nd ed (2006)
A humorous RPG system where the PC's are ultra-powerful ninjas who have taken day jobs as fast food deliverers. They go on missions to deliver the food in 30 minutes or less (even to inside a high security installation) without being seen by the customer. If they fail, they must commit seppuku. It uses a very simple system. Four stats are generated by rolling 3d6 (Strength, Agility, Ki, and Endurance). Resolution is by rolling under your stat on a multi-d6 roll, with more dice rolled for more difficult tasks. The second edition uses a variant of the Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) system introduced in Dead Inside.
Ninjas and Superspies
1st ed by Eric Wujcik (1988) Palladium Books
A cinematic modern action/adventure game, using a variant of the Palladium System. Most of the book is dedicated to combat of one form or another, especially martial arts.
Nobilis
1st ed by R. Sean Borgstrom (1999) Plainlabel / Pharos
2nd ed (2002) Hogshead Games
3rd ed (2011) EOS Press
A game of theological conflict, where the characters are Powers each set to defend some aspect of reality (like Joy, or Duels, or Calenders Days, etc.). They are fighting "Excrucians" who are trying to destroy all of the larger reality, of which our world is only a small part. It uses a diceless system where players spend "miracle points" to accomplish their actions. The second edition greatly expands the text with examples of play and GM advice.
Noctum
1st ed by Mischa L. Thomas (2005) self-published
A Swedish-language modern horror game similar to the earlier game Kult. cf. http://www.ad-noctum.com/.
No Dice - Pure Role Playing
1st ed by Leo Stableford, Suzanne Jordan (2009) No Dice RPG Team
A universal minimalist RPG, concentrating on advice for players and GM. The base mechanic uses playing cards - drawing from a deck against a difficulty from 1 to 10 set by the GM. A Jack is an automatic failure; a Queen is an automatic success; a King is kept by the player to be traded in for a future redraw.
noir
1st ed by Jason Inglert, Jack Norris, Curtis Werner (1997) Archon Gaming Inc.
A film noir RPG (i.e. pulp-era mystery and intrigue). It uses a free point-build character creation, with an additive dice pool resolution (roll d6's equal to trait plus skill and total them vs difficulty). The combat system is fairly involved.
No Press Anthology
1st ed by Luke Crane, Alexander Cherry, Michael S. Miller, Kirt Dankmyer, Daniel Solis, Matt Machell, Jeffrey Schecter, Mike Holmes, Ben Lehman (2004) Key 20 Publishing
A collection of eight short roleplaying games published as a single volume, edited by Luke Crane. "Snowball", by Alexander Cherry, is a variant of the free RPG "The Pool" which works backwards in time from a strong image. "Discernment", by Michael S. Miller, is an RPG where the players puts someone in differing situations in order to discern the overall soul quality of the one being examined. "Pretender", by Kirt Dankmyer, is fantasy game about supernatural beings hidden as normal people in the 1980s. "WTF", by Daniel Solis, is a surreal game with many GMs and only one player. "The Agency", by Matt Machell, is about characters fighting the supernatural in the 1960s. "Pagoda", by Jeffrey Schecter, is a game of Chinese wuxia (kung fu fantasy). "Cell Gamma", by Mike Holmes, is a game where the PCs start out in prison cells, with no memory. (The rules are GM-only.) "Over the Bar", by Ben Lehman, is a combined RPG and drinking game.
Norwegian Style
1st ed by Erlend Sand Bruer, Tor Kjetil Edland, Arvid Falch, Ole Peder Giæver, Martin Gudmundsen, Matthijs Holter, Magnus Jakobsson, Håken Lid, Lasse Lundin, Anders Nygaard, Tomas HV Mørkrid, Erling Rognli, Margrete Somerville, Øyvind Stengrundet, Even Tømte, Rune Valle (2009) self-published
A collection of 17 short role-playing games by Norwegian designers. They vary in length, form and content from 15-minute "game poems" to year-long campaigns, from GM-less freeform to competitive resource management games, from light-hearted fantasy slapstick to grimly realistic stories of patricide.
Noumenon
1st ed by Caias Ward, Chris Welsh, Darren Maclennan, Darwin Leary, Jens Rushing, Josh Benton, Khairul Hisham, Lee Foster, Monica Valentinelli, Nathan Hill, Nick Bousfield, Robert Hansen, Thomas Eliot (2006) Abstract Nova Entertainment
A strange fantasy role-playing game of mystery and abstraction. Players assume the roles of the Sarcophagi -- strange insect-like creatures trapped within the Silhouette Rouge, who encounter bizarre entities and explore strange locations. It uses a domino-based task resolution system that enables players to build upon each other's successes, emphasizing player cooperation.
Novus Fantasy Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Tim Dugger (2012) Firehawk Games
A fantasy RPG, set in an original fantasy world on the large island of Tyrlon. Originally inhabited by semi-barbarian Halflings and a peaceful spider-folk, it began being colonized a hundred years ago by other races. The game includes six races (Human, Elves, Dwarves, Halflings, Half-Elf and Half-Orc) and eight classes (including Archer, Fighter, Martial Artist, Minstrel, and Dual Mage). Resolution uses an open-ended 2d10 roll. There are Fate Points that modify resolution, and combat uses Action Points.
Now Playing: Roleplaying the World of Television
1st ed by Bradford Younie (2004) Carnivore Games
A universal system for roleplaying which adapts from a television series, or just emulates the style. The mechanics are a variant of Fudge. The core rulebook includes a sample series (the "Foundation for Paranormal Investigation") and a sample episode.
Nylon Angel
1st ed by Cary Lenehan (2006) White Mice Games
A cyberpunk role-playing game based on the books by Marianne de Pierres. It is set in a near-future cyberpunk Australia.
Obsidian: The Age of Judgement
1st ed by Micah Skaritka, Dav Harnish, Frank Nolan (1999) Apophis
2nd ed (2001)
A mystic post-daemonic-apocalypse science-fantasy RPG, set in the year 2299, after the manifestation of Hell upon the Earth Plane in 2029. It is set within the "Zone", a massive monolithic structure housing the remains of Humanity. They are threatened by "Daemons" from outside which feed on sin, and sympathetic "Kultist" within. Characters have the option to play heavenly characters imbued by the Divinity, daemonic characters who serve the daemon hordes, or neutral characters that serve only themselves or the megacorporations within the Zone. It uses a skill-based dice-pool system: total (attribute + skill) d6's vs. difficulty.
octaNe
1st ed by Jared A. Sorensen (2002) Memento Mori Theatricks
A post-apocalyptic RPG set amidst "trash-culture" America. It uses a dramatic system based around Plot Points, though it also uses die rolls. There is one supplement, "Against the Reich", which adapts the game for two-fisted pulp serials fighting Hitler, including 30 new character Roles.
Odysseus
1st ed by Marshall Rose (1980) FGU
A fantasy RPG set in an indeterminate period of ancient Greece. Includes brief rules for warships and naval rule.
Oem Prime
1st ed (1997) Omnimarcus
A fantasy RPG system. The system uses the special icon-marked 12-sided dice ("Success Dice", "Battle Dice", and "Body Dice") that it uses.
The Official Superhero Adventure Game
1st ed by Brian Phillips (1981) self-published
A generic superhero RPG, focusing mainly on combat.
Of Gods and Men
1st ed by Jeffrey Konkol (1997) Non-Sequitor Productions
An epic fantasy RPG. The system is level-based with some skill templates and only human characters. During character creation, the player draws three divinity cards with the "divine power" their character has (Skill Gain, Flight, etc.). Character creation uses random-roll attributes (take 5 highest of 7d10 for each of six attributes) and point-bought skills.
Og: The Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Aldo Ghiozzi (1995) Wingnut Games
2nd ed (2000)
Unearthed ed by Robin D. Laws (2007)
A humorous beer-and-pretzels mini-RPG about cavemen vs dinosaurs. Players choose 1 of 5 types of cavemen: strong caveman, smart caveman, fast caveman, hitting caveman, or healthy caveman. The twist is that players are limited to a 17 word vocabulary at all times: you, me, rock, water, fire, tree, hair, bang, sleep, smelly, small, cave, food, thing, big, sun, and go.
OGL Ancients
1st ed by Adrian Bott (2004) Mongoose Publishing
A game covering the broad genre of ancient history and legend, focusing on the Egyptians and Greeks before the rise of the Roman Empire. It uses a variant of the D20 System from third edition D&D and D20 Modern. It is, however, a complete core rulebook released using Wizards of the Coast's Open Gaming License (OGL).
OGL Cybernet - Cyberpunk Roleplaying
1st ed by August Hahn (2003) Mongoose Publishing
A game covering the broad genre of cyberpunk and netrunning, using a variant of the D20 System from third edition D&D and D20 Modern. It is, however, a complete core rulebook released using Wizards of the Coast's Open Gaming License (OGL).
OGL Horror
1st ed by Gareth Hanrahan (2003) Mongoose Publishing
A game covering the broad genre of horror, using a variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D and D20 Modern. It is, however, a complete core rulebook released using Wizards of the Coast's Open Gaming License (OGL).
OGL Steampunk
1st ed by Alejandro Melchor (2004) Mongoose Publishing
A game covering the broad genre of steam-age science fiction, using a variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D and D20 Modern. It is, however, a complete core rulebook released using Wizards of the Coast's Open Gaming License (OGL).
OGL Wild West
1st ed by Gareth Hanrahan (2004) Mongoose Publishing
A game covering the broad genre of wild west action, using a variant of the D20 System of third edition D&D and D20 Modern. It is, however, a complete core rulebook released using Wizards of the Coast's Open Gaming License (OGL).
Omnifray
1st ed by Matt West (2008) Omnifray
A fantasy genre RPG set in an original quasi-medieval fantasy world called the Enshrouded Lands. Outwardly the world is populated only by ordinary humans and animals - but there are many magical secrets. Resolution uses a universal table, that gives percentile chances when comparing opposing ability scores. Other aspects of the game use a full range of polyhedral dice. Character abilities are split between ordinary traits and feats that require energy points of a particular type such as physical energy, concentration energy, or fate points. Character creation is limited point-based, using character generation points for your attributes and traits, and versatility points for feats.
Omnigon
1st ed by Dennis Craig, Scott Groves, Alan P. Widtmann, Glenn Zaroski (1989) Omnigon Games Inc.
A sci-fi RPG system. It uses a simple class-based system with six classes: warrior, rogue, infiltrator, scout, psionicist, and alpha knight (semi-psionic warrior).
Once Upon a Time in the West
1st ed by Beck, Spencer (1978) Tabletop Games
A western-genre skirmish combat game which came in 3 booklets, which was officially developed into an RPG with the fourth booklet ("Return of OUATITW").
One Can Have Her
1st ed by Jonas Ferry (2007) self-published
A game inspired by film noir, designed for play in a single evening for a GM and two or more players. Each character is guilty of a crime, and they are competing to get what they want done before their time is up. It uses a resolution system based on playing cards, where hands of cards are played off against each other one at a time. Character creation begins picking one of 10 character types (including Politician, War veteran, Journalist, Gangster) and one of 10 attributes (including Paranoid, Depressed, Idealistic, Hardboiled). The player then decides upon their character's life goal (what they hope to achieve before they die). The GM then chooses who each character's enemy is, and introduces the femme fatale, the one woman each player wants, but only one can have.
The One Ring: Adventures over the Edge of the Wild
1st ed by Francesco Nepitello, Marco Maggi, Amado Angulo, Dominic McDowall-Thomas (2011) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited
A fantasy roleplaying game set in the world of Middle Earth by J.R.R. Tolkien five years after the events narrated in The Hobbit in the area of Wilderland (the region visited by Bilbo in his journey to the Lonely Mountain). Resolution is by 1d12 (the Feat Die) with 1d6 for each level of skill. Success is measured by the number of sixes rolled. Characters have 3 attributes (Body, Heart and Wits) - each with six associated skills for a total of 18 skills. There are also Valor and Wisdom social stats along with Hope points (used for extra dice for rolls along with other effects) and Corruption (used for the influence of evil). The set comes with an 192 page Adventurer's Book and 144 page Loremaster's Book.
On Her Majesty's Arcane Service
1st ed by clash bowley (2009) Flying Mice LLC Precis Intermedia Games
A historical fantasy RPG, set in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I in 16th century England. The players characters are part of Her Majesty's Arcane Service, a secret force headed by John Dee to protect England from mystical attack. It uses a dice pool system, the StarPool dice mechanic, also used in later editions of the Starcluster RPG. The game includes rules for creating a branch of the service, including capital, base, type, and various resources. Character creation is via a lifepath system, with various options including Half-angel, Changeling, Hunter, Esotericist, Magus, Templar, Savant, Warlock, and Minstrel. There are magic rules similar to those in Blood Games II.
On Mighty Thews
1st ed by Simon Carryer (2011) Simon Carryer Games
A sword and sorcery fantasy game based on Robert E. Howard's Conan stories. It uses a simple scene-based system using step-die resolution. Character creation starts by assigning a d4, d8, and d12 to three base attributes - Warrior, Sorcerer, and Explorer. Players then choose two freeform attributes assigned a d6 and a d10 as well as a single-word d20 trait. After character creation, players and GM collectively create the setting by drawing a map and marking it with each character's d20 trait and adding features related to these. Play proceeds by scenes that the GM creates and the players add details to. Resolution is by taking the highest result of rolling all dice that apply, compared to a difficulty (default 4) or opposed roll. Foregoing a d20 roll can earn the player a reroll token.
Open Core Role Playing System
1st ed by Christopher Helton, Jamie Borg, Ewen Cluney, Richard Gazley, Tim Huntley, Jonathan M. Thompson (2004) Battlefield Press
An open-license system based on the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D. It eliminates class mechanics, replacing it with open point-based character generation. Action resolution uses 3d6 + Attribute + Skill vs. target number.
Opening the Dark
1st ed by Malcolm Sheppard (2007) Mob United Media
A modern dark fantasy/horror RPG, closely based on White Wolf's World of Darkness games, with the core mechanics released under an open gaming license. The player characters may be investigators of dark mysteries, or monsters at the heart of the secrets. The basic game includes guidelines for set powers, freeform magic and spirits. It uses a dice pool system, rolling d10s equal to attribute plus skill, where every result from 7 to 9 is one success, and every result of 10 is two successes. Total successes are compared to difficulty.
OpenQuest: D100 Gaming Made Easy
1st ed by Newt Newport (2009) D101 Games
"Con-Quest" ed (2010)
A generic fantasy role-playing game, based on Mongoose Games' RuneQuest SRD with ideas from previous editions of Chaosium's RuneQuest and Stormbringer 5th. Magic is divided into Battle Magic, Divine Magic, and Sorcery. The basic game includes a sample setting ("The Empire of Gatan") and a sample adventure ("The Road Less Travelled"). The content is entirely open gaming content released under Wizards of the Coast's Open Gaming License.
Open Versatile Anime RPG
1st ed by Clay Gardner (2005) Wise Turtle Publishing
A universal RPG which aims at broadly emulating Japanese anime genres. It uses a rules-lite dice pool system, the "Richochet" system. Character creation is by simply picking a number of freeform traits and flaws, rated numerically. For action resolution, you roll a number of d6s based on which freeform traits apply to an action. You add together doubles or take the highest die and compare to a GM-set difficulty number.
Operation: Fallen Reich
1st ed by Mikael Reidal (2009) Fallen Publishing
A historical occult mystery game - subtitled "Can Evil Be Stopped In Time For Tea?" - where the player characters are ordinary but colorful British citizens who come to fight the strange forces behind the Nazi party on the eve of World War II. These are supernatural creatures called the Fallen, who have plagued mankind for millenia. The game uses a simple system with detailed skills but no attributes. Resolution is by 1d20 + skill vs. difficulty. Character creation in the full game is by a separate physical board game (the Life Board). The player draws four cards from a custom deck (Start Cards), each with a profession and a personality trait. They select the profession from one card and take the personality traits from the others. The profession defines a starting spot on the Life Board, and the player then plays 16 rounds on the board, rolling a die to move to different squares each time and collecting a Destiny Card.
Orbit
1st ed by Jeff Diamond (1998) 6-0 Games
A light-hearted spacefaring sci-fi RPG, including dungeon-like labyrinth worlds. It uses a simple skill-based system, where character creation is based on 1 of 8 professions. The resolution is percentile based. Experience is based on creatures killed and money acquired.
Ork!
1st ed by Todd Miller, Chris Pramas (2000) Green Ronin Press
A satirical play-the-monsters RPG, where you play a murderous, back-stabbing psychotic interested in naked, merciless power. It uses a simple system rolling a number of dice (1-5) based on skill and die type (d4-d20) based on attribute vs a number of d6's based on difficulty (2d6-5d6).
Orkworld
1st ed by John Wick (2000) Wicked Press
A fantasy genre RPG based around a hunter-gatherer race called "Orks", set on the world of Ghurtha. The culture and background of the Orks is heavily detailed. The system is a dice-pool system, taking the highest of skill+attribute d6 -- except multiples of the same number add +1 to the that number. e.g. A roll of 1,1,2,3,5,5,5,6 would keep 5's for result of 5+1+1=7. Also, a special rule for ties is that you compare all the dice until the tie is resolved. Character creation is done by the players collectively creating a household with a single pool of points. Advancement is by managed fana (fame) points handled by the group's tala (bard).
Orpheus
1st ed by Bryan Armor, John Chambers, Genevieve Cogman, Richard Dansky, B. D. Flory, Harry Heckel IV, Ellen Kiley, James Kiley, Matthew McFarland, Dean Shomshak, C. A. Suleiman (2003) White Wolf
A modern horror game, where the PCs are ghosts (or Laments) who are working for a company called the Orpheus Group. The company has ghost employees who do various jobs ranging from occult investigations, to spying, to assassination. It uses a variant of the Storyteller system.
Orx: Nasty, Brutish, and Short
1st ed by Ravenscrye Grey Daegmorgan (2003) Wild Hunt Studio
A darkly comedic fantasy game about playing orcs, creatures hated by the gods and doomed to die. It uses a narration-based dice pool system. Each orc has three attributes: Nasty (social), Brute (physical), and Grok (mental). They also have a Fate stat, which starts at 1 and rises as they choose to tempt fate. Players can roll extra dice on any roll, but this raises their Fate stat, which is used to check if they die when defeated. Character creation is by assigning a d6, d8, and d10 to the three stats, as well as picking three player-defined descriptors such as "Fast-Talking" or "Distance Spitting Champion". Play is in scenes, where the GM has a limited amount of opposition dice available per scene.
Other Suns
1st ed by Niall Shapero (1983) FGU
2nd ed (1989) shareware
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, set in an interstellar empire (the "L'Doran Hegemony") with 11 species of anthropomorphic animals. Centuries ago, humans fought a devastating war with the Hegemony and eventually lost, reducing Earth to ash. Now, scattered human worlds (former colonies) have joined the Hegemony in re-exploration and settling of the galaxy. It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation has random-roll attributes. cf. Ermine's Other Suns Online page.
Outime
1st ed by Marc W.D. Tyrrell (1983) Valhalla Simulation Games
A time-travel RPG for adventures on alternate Earths. The system is similar to original Traveller, covering psionics.
Over the Edge
1st ed by Jonathan Tweet (1992) Atlas Games
2nd ed (1997)
A modern-day "psycho-surreal" RPG, set on a fictional island in the Mediterranean where paranoid conspiracies, alternate realities, and bizarre strangeness collide. It uses a minimalist system where each character is described by 3 narratively-defined traits and 1 fault. The number of dice you sum for a task depends on which (if any) of your traits it falls under.
Oz Dark & Terrible
1st ed by S. Alexander Gentry (2010) Emerald City Expeditions, LLC Studio 2 Publishing
A fantasy RPG set in a dark variant on L. Frank Baum's Land of Oz just prior to the first book. For example, the Tin Woodsman is a retired member of the Wizard's oppressive secret police, while the Cowardly Lion is an exile who refused to eat the hearts of humans to gain lycanthropic powers. It uses a d10 dice pool system, where players roll a number of d10s equal to the sum of traits, and add their skill to the total. One die in the pool is always the Luck Die, which is open-ended. Character creation is point-based, including buying magic via ratings from 1 to 5 in various spheres (such as Fire, Mind, or Life).
Paladin
1st ed by Clinton R. Nixon (2003) Anvilwerks
A fantasy RPG in which the PCs are holy warriors, fighting not only against evil, but against the temptation to turn to hatred, lust, fear, and anger and capture the power that evil can bring. It is designed to be easily adapted to a variety of settings, ranging from Shaolin monks to Jedi knights. Characters creation is point-based, dividing 9 points among Flesh attributes, 6 among Light attributes, and 3 among Dark attributes. In addition, there are two freeform binary skills. It uses a simple narrative dice pool system. Roll a number of d6s equal to attribute plus number of applicable skills plus any animus points spent. Every 5 rolled is one success; every 6 rolled is two successes.
Palladium Fantasy Role Playing Game
1st ed by Kevin Siembieda, Erick Wujcik (1983) Palladium Books
2nd ed (1990)
3rd ed (1998)
A traditional fantasy-genre game. It uses the "Palladium" system (actually first introduced in The Mechanoid Invasion). The system uses random-roll attributes and class-based character creation, with advancement based on levels. Action resolution is by d20 (combat and saving throws) or d100 (non-combat skills), similar to AD&D. Differences are variety of percentile skills (advanced based on level) and combat with separate attack roll and parry roll.
Pandemonium! : Adventures in Tabloid World
1st ed by Stephen Michael Sechi, Robin D. Laws, Joel M. Kaye (1993) MIB Productions Atlas Games
A comedic modern RPG, set in a world where Elvis is alive, aliens kidnap our women, and other tabloid reports are all true. It uses a simple system of attribute + 1d10 + modifiers where 6+ is a success.
Pantheon and Other Games
1st ed by Robin D. Laws (2000) Hogshead Games
A 24-page book containing 5 mini-RPGs, all by Robin D. Laws. It uses a dice-and-counter story-telling system (the `Narrative Cage-Match') for all 5. There is no GM, instead each player can make up whatever events they like for their PC -- but other players can challenge using a set of counters as stakes, then resolved by a dice roll. Scores for each player are resolved by scorecards pre-written for each of the 5 scenarios.
Panty Explosion: a psychic schoolgirl adventure game
1st ed by Jake Richmond, Matt Schlotte (2006) Atarashi Games
Perfect ed (2011)
A modern-day horror RPG about Japanese schoolgirls who secretly fight demons, some of whom have psychic powers. Each character has "Godai" stats based on five elements (Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Void) which which represent different ways of resolving conflicts. For example, Fire is aggression and resolving issues with violence, while Water is wit and social. Character creation is by setting these traits, picking an agenda, another PC as Best Friend, and another PC as Rival, then voting for most popular. A secret random draw determines which PC is psychic. It uses a dice pool conflict resolution system (using d6, d8, d10, and d12), where successes are narrated by the Best Friend player, and failures are narrated by the Rival player.
Parabellum
1st ed by Martin Lindholm (1996) October Productions
A Swedish-language modern crime-thriller RPG.
Paranoia
1st ed by Daniel Seth Gelber, Greg Costikyan, Eric Goldberg, Ken Rolston (1984) West End Games
2nd ed (1987)
"5th" ed by Ed Stark, Greg Farshtey (1995)
"XP" ed by Allen Varney (2004) Mongoose Publishing
A hilarious dark future comedy game, where characters are pawns of an out-of-control Computer in a post-nuclear-apocalypse complex. The atmosphere is on black comedy and slapstick, with the notable feature that each character has 5 clone backups -- such that they can die multiple times (and they usually do). 1st edition used a percentile skill system with skill trees. 2nd edition completely revised this. The XP edition again majorly revised the rules, eliminating attributes in favor of six skill groups (Management, Stealth, Violence, Hardware, Software, Wetware). Action resolution is roll under skill on 1d20, with chances modified by "Perversity Points" which are spent before the roll to modify the chance.
Part-Time Gods
1st ed by Eloy Lasanta (2011) Third Eye Games
An urban fantasy game where the player characters are humans who were once mortal, but received the Spark that transformed them into minor deities. Each god has a Dominion - i.e. what they are a god of - as well as specialized skills within that subject, called Manifestations. They also become connected to a territory that is influenced by the Dominion. So a goddess of liquor would have a territory that developed more alcoholics. The gods are divided into "Theologies" - widespread groups sharing a purpose or theme, such as the Ascendants who want to become as powerful as the old gods, or the Cult of the Saints who believe they were sent from Heaven. They also form into local pantheons, who have shared or overlapping territory. Resolution uses a simplified variant of the "Dynamic Gaming System" from from Apocalypse Prevention, Inc. by the same author. The core mechanic is 1d20 + Attribute + Skill vs. a Target Number of 10, 20, 30, or 40. Characters creation is limited point-based, including both human stats (25 points in six attributes and 25+IQ points in skills) as well as godly stats.
Passages: Adventures Penned by Literary Giants
1st ed by Justin D. Jacobson, Richard Farrese (2006) Blue Devil Games
A modern fantasy game based on the fiction works of the late Victorian Era, including Carroll's Wonderland stories, Baum's Oz books, Swift's "Gulliver's Travels", Doyle's Holmes stories, Kipling, Wells, and more. The cover is a scene from "Alice in Wonderland", with scenes from other famous works done for interior illustrations. It uses a distant variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. There are no classes or levels. Rather, character creation is template-based. All characters must choose one culture (Arab, Asian, Easterner, frontiersman, native or Westerner) and one caste, their social class (slave, servant, freeman, bourgeois, noble or royal). Advancement is by "creative energy points", which are used to buy new advantages. There is no combat bonus. Rather, there is a Combat skill, with three sub-skills: Attack, Defend, and Initiative. Damage is done by the difference between attack roll and defense roll, modified by weapon and armor. It also includes "plot points" which can be spent to control narration.
Pathfinder RPG
Beta ed by Jason Buhlman (2008) Paizo Publishing
1st ed (2009)
A variant of the 3.5th edition of D&D, published under the Open Gaming License. It consolidated and simplified skills and changes certain rules features such as how favored class and class skills worked, but it is intended to be compatible with supplements and adventures designed for 3.5th edition.
Pax Draconis
pre-release ed by Justin Dagna (2001) Technicraft Design
premiere ed by Justin Dagna (2003)
A spacefaring science-fiction RPG, set in a galaxy where the "Draconian Empire" is fighting a civil war with the "People's Republic". There are three major race groups: humans, the draconian races, and the treeber species (a diverse group with variations like four arms, infrared sight and under-water breathing). It uses a simple percentile skill-based system.
Pelicar
1st ed by Lewis Nicolls (1996) Pharaoh
A traditional fantasy-genre game, using a class and level-based system with skills.
Pendragon
1st ed by Greg Stafford (1985) Chaosium
3rd ed (1990) Chaosium
4th ed (1993) Chaosium
4th (Reprinted) ed (1999) Green Knight Publishing
5th ed (2005) White Wolf
A game of Arthurian romance, based on Malory's L'Morte d'Arthur and similar sources. The PC's are knights who will go on quests and journeys, but also engage in building families and raising heirs. Campaigns may span generations. The mechanics are roll 1d20 under (skill or attribute), using the roll as level of success (i.e. "blackjack" method). Combat is a contest where only the combatant with the higher level of success does damage. It uses a detailed system of personality traits and passions, such as Pride/Modesty and many others. Character creation is only knights under the original edition, and magic was only done by NPCs. Under the fourth edition, the options are expanded. The fifth edition returns to more limited initial character generation, and starts in the year 485 (during the reign of King Uther) rather than 531.
A Penny for My Thoughts
1st ed by Paul Tevis (2009) Evil Hat Productions
A storytelling game in which players take the roles of amnesiac patients undergoing therapy to recover their lost memories. Each play session is organized as an individual therapy session at the fictional Orphic Institute For Advanced Studies. It uses a set of diceless narrational mechanics, where the players take turns role-playing the patient (known as "the Traveller"). Turns and events are determined by a set of memory triggers that the players write at the start of the session and randomly draw, as well as an economy of pennies exchanged by certain rules.
Perfect
1st ed by Joe McDonald (2006) Inciteful Entertainment
An alternate-reality crime game, set in a world akin to Victorian England that is under oppressive rule. The PCs are criminals within this world who strike out against the system.
Periphery: Science Fiction Roleplaying on the Edge
1st ed by Gareth-Michael Skarka (1994) Epitaph Studios
A sci-fi RPG.
Persona
1st ed by Kevin Munoz (1997) Tesarta
A universal, diceless RPG system. While diceless, it uses detailed numerical attributes and skills which are compared to find results. It also includes a powers system for designing magic, psionics, superpowers, etc.
The Peryton Fantasy Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Christina Lea (2006) Peryton Publishing
Revised ed by Christina Lea (2009) Peryton Publishing
A retro style fantasy game inspired by pulp fantasy source material using a variant of the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D. The system includes knacks and ability checks to let players get started quickly and still evolve the character as it goes on.
Phantasy Conclave
1st ed (1984) Phantasy Conclave
A medieval fantasy RPG, set in the world of "Arth", originally inhabited by humans, halflings, elves, dwarves, and gnomes. To defeat a city-state of conquering wizards, a magical conclave was created that prevents technology from working - and also spawned the races of aerlings and meren. Character creation is class-based, advancement is level-based. The classes are healer, wizard, scout, and fighter. The core product is a boxed set including three 20-page booklets, an 8-page gamemaster guide, and ten dice. Illustrated by N. Taylor Blanchard.
Phase VII
1st ed by Dennis Drew II (1982) Cheshire Games
A science fantasy mini-RPG (16 pages), set on a damaged space station where characters try to fight monsters and collect treasure.
Phoenae: The Fierce Joy of Being Alive
1st ed (unknown, pre-1990) Ian Press
A fantasy RPG set on an alien world whose inhabitants are a mix of anthropomorphic felines and various human races (who are somewhat elfin in appearance). In this world, ancient peoples ascended to become angels and demons. Now a new set of races have been created by a god to try again. The PC's are members of a the last faction of their race whose memory was wiped out.
Phoenix Command
1st ed by Barry Nakazono, David McKenzie (1986) Leading Edge
2nd ed (1987)
3rd ed (1989)
4th ed (1991)
An ultra-complex, ultra-realistic combat system and RPG of modern-day military combat.
Pie Shop
1st ed by Mr. Toad (2004) Corone Design
A horror roleplaying game where the player characters are psychopathic serial killers who were captured and recruited by men in black while in prison. The men in black released them on the condition that they would kill specified targets when contacted.
Pirates: The Great Adventure Game
1st ed by Matt deMille (2001) New Dimension Games
Revised ed (2003)
A cinematic pirate action RPG, based on an amalgam of classic pirate eras and movies. Action resolution uses 1d12. Character creation is class-based, with level-based advancement. In addition to traditional experience, there are reward systems for fame, fear, and privateering ranks and titles.
Pirates and Plunder
1st ed by Michael S. Matheny (1982) Yaquinto
A historical pirate/swashbuckling RPG set in the Carribean, aimed at beginning players. Published as a bosed set with 3 booklets: players book, GM book, and sample adventures.
The Pirates of Dark Water
1st ed by Lee Agosta, Jasper K. Cummings (1994) Mindgames, Inc.
A fantasy-genre role-playing game based on the Hanna Barbara animated television series of the same name. It is set on the fantasy world of Mer, which is dominated by seas but being devastated by the strange "dark water" substance which is oozing from the fissure where magical treasures were stolen. Pirates and others roam the seas in ships that can both sail and fly. The basic game includes a 64-page "World Book" containing background information, locations, and character creation rules, plus 105 3-hole punched sheets detailing the creatures of Mer and a 31 3/4" x 22" color map of Mer.
Pirates of the Spanish Main
1st ed by Paul Wade-Williams (2007) Pinnacle Entertainment Group
A game of romance and adventure on the high seas based on the WizKids collectable strategy game Pirates of the Spanish Main and Pirates of the Crimson Coast. It is set in a nebulous time around the early 18th century. It is a standalone game system based on the Savage Worlds rules system, adding a ship combat system.
Pixie
1st ed by Geoff Tuffli (1992) New World Games
2nd ed by Geoff Tuffli (2005) Jubal Online Games, Inc.
A modern fantasy RPG where the PC's are pixies who want to take over modern-day human homes -- but humans (and their pets) see the pixies as bats, rats and pests. Action resolution is by rolling 2d6 under stat. Character generation is mostly random with some skill selection. The first edition is only 20 pages. The second edition is 150 pages and includes a dozen different types of fey folk including sprites, spriggans, goblins and trolls. The 2nd edition system is pure talent-based, so instead of having separate attributes, skills and spells, everything is simply a talent.
Pocket Universe
1st ed by Manda, Jeff Dee (2001) Unigames
A 16-page mini-RPG with complete rules. Action resolution is by rolling 2d10 under either attribute or skill -- where doubles indicates either critical success (on a success) or critical failure (on a failure). There are four attributes, which range from 7 to 14 for humans: PHYS, DEFT, INTL, WILL. Skills add to the Attribute score the skill is based on.
Pocket Warrior
1st ed by Guy McLimore, Greg Poehlein (1997) Plaid Rabbit
This is a simple generic RPG using a skill-based system. There are 4 attributes: Strength, Coordination, Intelligence, and Health. Actions are resolved by rolling 2d10 under skill. Character creation is limited point-based.
Point Blank
1st ed by Eoin Connolly, Rob Brennan, Eric Nolan (unknown, post-1994) Wasteland
A cinematic modern action RPG, emulating over-the-top action films in the style of John Woo. Characters gain Honour points for performing cinematic stunts and saying good one-liners, which can be used to increase skills and heal injuries.
Poison'd: a pirate rpg
1st ed by Vincent Baker (2007) Lumpley Games
An RPG about pirates, focusing on the dark and harsh life of pirates. It is set in 1701, following the assassination of Captain Brimstone Jack by his cook under the King's orders. It uses an abstract dice pool system, where players roll a number of six-sided dice equal to stat, and results of 4,5 or 6 are considered successes. Combat is categorized in four different ways for personal combat (fist, knife, sword and gun) and ship combat (pursuit, ranged, guns, and boarding). Combat has options for escalation and increased consequences. In character generation, players answer a series of questions by choosing from lists of options, which generates a small collection of statistics for sins, suffering, ambitions and gear. It also has campaign rules for Opportunities (including Elections, Prizes, Leisure, Betrayal and Urgent Considerations) that have mechanical consequences.
Pokemon Jr. Adventure Game
1st ed by Bill Slavicsek, Stan! (1999) Wizards of the Coast
A mini-RPG for young children, based on the Pokemon ("pocket monster") video and card games. Each pokemon has a card which lists its stats: attack roll, damage, and hit points - plus a power if its attack succeeds. Attacks are made by rolling 1d6 vs attack roll. The 60-page pocket-sized booklet mostly consists of 16 pre-made scenarios to play. cf. the official website.
Pokéthulhu
1st ed by S. John Ross (2000) Squishy Brain Games
2nd ed by S. John Ross (2001) Dork Storm Press
A humorous RPG which parodies both the Pokemon game/television show and Lovecraft's Cthuhlhu. The player characters are children called Cultists, each owning their own Pokéulhu which they must train and battle with while wandering the land of the dead. It uses a minimal dice-pool system where players roll a number of dice (D12s) dependent on difficulty (from 1 to 3). The roll is a success if one die is equal to or less than the relevant stat. There are special rules for Pokéthulhu battles, where 1 of 4 attacks are chosen. Character creation uses only 6 stats.
Polaris: Chivalric tragedy at the utmost north
1st ed by Ben Lehman (2005) Tao Games
A mythic fantasy game about knights of the Stars fighting the Mistaken demons of the Sun. It is designed for four players who split the gamemastering duties depending on which player character is spotlighted. A given player has a "new moon" (the player on his right, who controls personal and emotional ties), a "full moon" (the player on his left, who controls societal and hierarchical ties), and a "mistaken" (the player across from him, who controls enemies and has more control over conflict and story). As the players switch off spotlight, the roles switch around. There are also twelve "key phrases" that govern timing and decision-making. To start a scene, you begin with "And so it was"; if you object to a development, you interject "But only if" or "You ask far too much" (at which point you must negotiate the story, or sacrifice a Theme on your character sheet), and end with "And that was how it happened." When it is time for another character, you say "But hope was not yet lost, for [the next character] still heard the song of the stars" and start again.
Power Grrrl
1st ed by Michael Fiegel (2004) aethereal FORGE
A superhero RPG in the style of an anime cartoon, where the PCs are superpowered teenagers who have to manage both fighting supervillains and surviving high school. It uses a rules-lite universal system (the "POW!" system) available separately. Action resolution is by attribute + 2d6 vs difficulty. Character creation is point-based, spent on powers and six attributes: Agility, Brawn, Cognition, Damage, Energy, and Fellowship (ABCDEF). There are "specials" which include advantages, powers, and other things rather than skills.
Powers and Perils
1st ed by Richard Snider (1983) Avalon Hill
A traditional fantasy-genre RPG, which includes magic and monsters. There is no world background in the core boxed set, but a separate boxed set called "Perilous Lands" includes a detailed fantasy world. The rule system has a complex and math-heavy system which uses percentile rolls under skill times multiplier, or in combat on a universal chart. Character creation is random-roll attributes and random ads/disads, with point-bought skills. Advancement is partly level-based (separate Combat and Magic levels) and partly skill-based (improving skills with experience).
The Price of Freedom
1st ed by Greg Costikyan (1986) West End Games
A survivalist game of freedom fighters in Soviet-occupied America. The system uses d20 rolled against stats and skills (rated 1-20), with semi-complex combat using a hexmap and counters. Character creation is based on occupation, which determines your skills. Character background includes filling out Soviet identity papers. The first adventure has the Soviets landing in your city and how you react to it.
Prime Directive
1st ed by Timothy D. Olsen, Mark Costello (1993) Task Force Games
This is a Star Trek RPG, based on an obscure independent license of the original and animated television series, derived from the first technical manual. Its vision of the Star Trek universe is much more militaristic than others, used in Star Fleet Battles and other wargames. The player characters are elite commando teams (known as "Prime Teams" in the Federation) dropped by starships to deal with problems on planets or stations. It uses an open-ended dice pool system, with an open-ended roll of attribute + skill d6s. The highest result is compared to the "tricode" for that task, three numbers indicating thresholds required for marginal, normal, and critical success. Multiple lesser rolls can take precedence over the highest roll.
Primetime Adventures: a game of television melodrama
1st ed by Matt Wilson (2003) Dog-eared Design
A game of television melodrama, intended to simulate series like Alias, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Six Feet Under. It uses a simple dice pool system to resolve conflicts, where players roll a number of d10s equal to "Screen Presence" for the episode (which varies from 4 to 6), plus possible dice added for spending "Fan Mail" points. Over a "season" of nine episodes, each PC gets to designate certain episodes as their focus episodes. Character creation is by designating an Issue, a track of Screen Presence, and several freeform binary traits.
Primeval Role-playing Game
1st ed by Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan (2012) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited
A sci-fi RPG based on the British television show by Impossible Pictures, where Anomalies are connecting the modern-day present to distant times and places. The player characters are part of a team who contain threats from the Anomalies (like prehistoric dinosaurs and creatures from the future), and preserve the timeline. It uses a version of the "Vortex system" that first appeared in Doctor Who: Adventures in Time and Space (2009). Resolution is by adding attribute + skill + 2d6 versus difficulty - possibly modified by spending Story Points. Character creation is point-based, setting 6 attributes (Awareness, Coordination, Ingenuity, Presence, Resolve, and Strength) along with 12 skills and various traits.
Primitive
1st ed by Kevin Allen Jr. (2006) Kevin Allen Jr Design
A prehistoric caveman game, pitched as "Build a tribe, fight bloodthirsty dinosaurs, and discover untold mysteries in a game that features easy to follow rules, a uniquely simple turn based combat resolution syste, and character generation that focuses on group social dynamics".
The Prince's Kingdom
1st ed by Clinton Nixon (2006) CRN Games
A fantasy game aimed at children, set in the archipelago kingdom of Islandia. The PCs are a group of young princes who wander from island to island within their father's kingdom, solving problems. It uses a dice pool system, a simplified version of the rules from Dogs in the Vineyard.
The Princess Game
1st ed by Colin Fredericks (2007) Valent Games
A rules-lite, GM-less RPG where four players each take on an aspect of a magical girl's personality: Love, Imagination, Curiosity, and Fear. The girl is the only real person in the world, who creates things with her imagination -- thus the players divide the GM's duties between them. The Imagination player makes the world and describes the people and places that inhabit it, setting scenes and introducing characters. Love drives the girl to help people, defining objectives for the girl. Curiosity makes the girl want to look around and discover stuff, and the player can introduce new elements into the game. Fear makes the girl choose different paths and look for alternate options.
Prince Valiant
1st ed by Greg Stafford, William Dunn, Lynn Willis (1989) Chaosium
An Arthurian game by Greg Stafford (author of Pendragon). This is aimed at beginners with an extremely simple system using coin tosses. Each character has only two attributes, and throws a number of coins equal to the stat for action resolution.
Principia Malefex
1st ed by Alison Whetton, Ruari Armstrong, M. Retallack (1997) Principia Malefex
A dark psychological horror RPG, where the horror comes from what the human characters do to each other. There are few monsters (and the characters won't often run into them), there is little or no organised or identifiable opposition, and the characters often will not know whose side they are actually on. The system uses roll-under-skill on d20 and d200. Character generation is random-roll base attributes (modified by career choice), and point-bought skills and bonuses.
Privateers and Gentlemen
1st ed by Jon Williams (1983) FGU
A combined tactical miniatures rules and RPG, for Napoleonic-era naval warfare -- especially the British navy. It includes personal and naval combat rules. It uses a skill-based percentile system.
Privateers & Pirates
1st ed by Jonathan Clarke (2005) FJ Gaming
A historical RPG set in the Golden Age of Piracy (late 17th century) or the Age of Sail (mid-18th to early 19th century). The PCs are pirates or privateers, crewing a vessel trying to get rich. It uses a simple percentile system of roll over difficulty, with binary traits. If you have a trait, then you may switch the tens and ones dice in the percentile roll.
Project A-Ko RPG
1st ed by Jimmy Mah (1995) Dream Pod 9 Dream Pod 9 Ianus Publications
This is a comedy science-fiction RPG based on the Japanese anime TV series. It has a simple, rules-light system fitting for the goofiness and massive destruction found in the original A-Ko series, a rules-lite predecessor to the "Silhouette" system used in Heavy Gear and other games.
Promised Sands RPG
1st ed by Benjamin Rogers, Mike Rennaker, Robert Anderson, Kelly Slaughter (2003) BBRACK Productions
A fantasy RPG set in an original fantasy setting called T'nah: a magical, post-apocalyptic, vaguely middle-eastern desert environment. It uses a percentile skill-based system (the "Trinary System"), where you roll 3d10, the first two dice are percentile roll that determines success or failure and the third d10 is the Effect Die which determines degree of success. The 394-page core book includes extensive world detail, two magic systems (Ido and Qai), and a selection of monsters.
Proteus
1st ed by Bruce Gomes, Duncan Barrow (1992) Bruce Gomes Industries
A late medieval fantasy genre RPG with an original world setting. It has non-standard races of centaurs, rat-creatures, eagle-men, and others. The system is skill-based (roll under stat on 1d30). Character creation is random-roll attributes and point-bought skills.
Providence RPG
1st ed by Richard Binek, Nicolas Jequier, Jeff Mackintosh, Michael Scott, Lucien Soulban (1997) XID Creative
2nd ed (2001) Hubris
An unusual fantasy RPG, "a mix of fantasy and the four-color bravado of super-heroes". It has a separate rules book with the mechanics and a world book describing the setting. It is set on a former penal colony planet in another dimension, which was cut off from the original world and freed by a revolt. Much later, a crack in the world started to flood the world, forcing the inhabitants to look for the long-lost gates to escape. The system uses attribute+skill as modifiers to a 2d10 roll vs difficulty.
Psi World
1st ed by Del Carr, Cheron (1984) FGU
A game of psionic powers in a near-future setting with two options: Psi's fighting an oppressive government, or Psi Police protecting innocents from rogue Psi's. It uses a percentile skill-based system.
Psychosis
1st ed by Charles Ryan (1994) Chameleon Eclectic
A surreal game where character's reality is questioned, in the genre of movies like "Brazil" and "Total Recall". It uses a diceless system where action resolution is by tarot cards and GM discretion.
La Puerta de Ishtar
1st ed by Rodrigo Garcia Carmona (2012) Otherselves
A Spanish-language fantasy game, set in a fantasy world patterned after Mesopotamia in the Bronze Age. The setting focuses on the Empire of Akkad, the most powerful known empire, ruled by the human-appearing Awilu, and also populated partly by two slave races they created - the human-like Mushkenu, and the minotaur-like Wardu. It uses a skill-based system, with resolution by 3d6 + attribute + skill compared to a difficulty (13 for an average action). There are six attributes (rated 1-6), and broad skills (rated 1-3) like "gladiator" or "noble". Character creation is a mix of random-roll, priority picks, and lifepath.
Pulp Era: Cinematic Adventures in the Yesteryear
1st ed by James Carpio, Michael Smith, Jon Richardson (2005) Chapter 13 Press Dilly Green Bean Games
A game based on the serial pulp stories of the 30's and 40's, mixed with modern cinematic action. It uses an original skill-based system with eight attributes (Smarts, Vigor, Charm, Spirit, Brawn, Insight, Dynamism, and Quickness), a Stunt, a Schtick, Gimmicks, and Faults.
Puppetland
1st ed by John Tynes (1999) Hogshead Games
A fantasy/horror mini-RPG, set in a world of puppets where the evil Punch has killed the creator and rules over the other puppets with an iron hand. It uses a minimalist diceless system where players are required to speak out (in puppet-show style) what they are doing as dialogue (i.e. "I hit you with this stick, you evil nutcracker!").
Purgatory
1st ed by Jon Wilkie (2000) Atomic Hyrax Games
A conspiracy RPG, set shortly before a looming apocalypse. The PC's are "Penitents" who have returned from the dead with various powers to deal with the upcoming doom. It uses a card-draw mechanic for action resolution that allows both live-action and table-top play.
QAGS: Quick Ass Game System
1st ed by Leighton Connor, Steve Johnson, Dale French (1998) Hex Games
A tongue-in-cheek minimalist RPG system intended for use in any setting. A character has 3 attributes (Body, Brain, and Nerve) along with a Job, "Gimmick", and Weakness. An additional stat is "WSPHITM" (Who should play him/her in the movie?).
Qin: The Warring States
1st French ed by Neko, Florrent, Kristoff, Romain d'Huissier, Pierre Buty (2005) 7ème Cercle
1st English ed (2007)
A semi-historical RPG set in China in 240 B.C., specifically the state of Qin -- which in history will shortly conquer the other six states to form a single nation. It uses an original system. Resolution uses a "Yin/Yang" roll -- roll two ten-sided dice and subtract the lower result from the higher. Which color die is lower is used in damage calculation. Character creation is limited point-bought, spending 14 points on five attributes based on the five Chinese elements, choice of one gift and one weakness, spending 15 points on skills, and 15 points on maneuvers and mystic arts.
QUAD Live Action Role Playing Rules
1st ed by Hardy Darrell (unknown) Guild of Blades
A generic set of LARP rules, covered in 20 digest pages, with no background and setting information. The rules cover resolving tasks and conflict as well as skill advancement, and are short so as to be memorized easily for live games.
Quest - The Storytelling Game
1st ed by Shane Garvey (2010) Crystal Star Games
A fantasy RPG, meant to be a basic entry-level game with a very simple system. Character creation is class-based with three classes.
Quest! A Role playing Game System for Children
1st ed by Dave Newton, Christi Newton (2012) self-published
An introductory RPG designed for 2-4 players ages 4-10 and a game master. It includes a board game, "The Gems of the Fairie Queen", intended as an introduction to role playing for children. It is self-published, available from the author's web-page at www.abervon.com/quest/.
Questers of the Middle Realms
1st ed by Tim Gray (2006) Silver Branch Games
A fantasy genre RPG set on an original world, "Median", which wryly pokes fun at some fantasy cliches. It uses a variant of the Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) system used in Dead Inside and Truth & Justice.
Quest of the Ancients
1st ed by Vince Garcia (1988) Unicorn Game Publications
A swords-and-sorcery genre RPG. It uses a class-based system with percentile secondary skills.
Quicksilver
1st ed by Manda, Jeff Dee (1997) Unigames
A fantasy RPG published electronically through HyperBooks Online. It is set in the land of Seloria, inhabited by 3 goblin races and 2 faerie races as well as humans. The world includes psychic powers as well as a unique metal ("Quicksilver") that responds to mental commands, molding itself to any shape. However, as it is used, the metal takes on a life of its own -- potentially "going rogue". It uses a skill-based system, rolling 2d10 under attribute + skill. Character creation is open point based, including 5 attributes (from 7 to 13), skills (from 0 to 4), and ads/disads.
The Quiet Year
1st ed by Joe McDonald (2013) Buried Without Ceremony
A post-apocalyptic storytelling game where the players take turns adding details to a year in the community in a post-apocalyptic setting, by drawing a map and by individual narration. Each turn, a card is drawn from a deck of playing cards arranged in the four suits for the seasons of the year and shuffled within each suit. There are different play options for each card drawn.
Rampant
1st ed (1999) Living Imagination, Inc.
A fantasy genre live-action role-playing system.
RandomAnime: The Definitive Anime Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Brian J. Perry (2002) Infernal Funhouse Productions
A universal system for anime-style play. Action resolution uses stat + 2d6 - difficulty, where a 10 or higher is a success. An additional die, the Luck die, is rolled to determine partial successes based on your Luck score. Character creation uses templates and limited point-buy. The player selects one of 21 templates (which gives a number of bonus points and luck points), then spends attribute points among the 8 attributes and skill points among the 30 skills. Experience is in "Style Points", given out during the game immediately if the player does a stylish move.
Rapture: The Second Coming
1st ed by William Spencer-Hale (1995) Quintessential Mercy
A game of theological horror, set in a futuristic biblical armageddon.
R.A.S.H. Engine Fantasy
1st ed by Jesse Sikes, Shawn Houghtaling (2010) The R.A.S.H. Engine Team
A skill-based system using a single d10 for resolution as a fantasy core rulebook in the genre of Dungeons & Dragons. It includes a magic system as well as options for races including humans, light and dark elves, dwarves, halflings, and gnomes. Character creation is limited point-based, spending 20 points on the four attributes - Reason, Agility, Strength, and Health - that form the game's acronym. The character then gets starting skill points equal to Reason times three, spends 10 specialization points, and may optionally choose a template - a package of starting abilities that give greater power within a specialty for a genre type such as fighter, thief, cleric, wizard, or knight.
Rated G: The Roleplaying Game of Saturday Morning Fantasy Violence
1st ed by Vincent Diakuw (2003) Thousandpress
A simple diceless system emulating fantasy action cartoons. Characters are defined by ranked "Tags", such as "Legendary Strength" for Superman. Higher-rated tags win, with more specific tag winning in the case of a tie. Tags may be pushed to increase them, but they are fatigued (lowering one rank) after one push, or exhausted after two pushes. Character creation works by all players writing a word or phrase on five slips of paper, then drawing from all the slips put together, using the drawn slips to create the basis for their tags.
Ravendeath
1st ed by Iacopo Frigerio (2010) Coyote Press
An Italian-language GMless game about stories of revenge such as The Crow, The Count of Monte Cristo, Sin City, Kill Bill, and others.
Raven Star
1st ed by A. Siddiqui (1994) Raven Star Game Designs
2nd ed (1997)
A science fantasy RPG, set in a far-future space-opera universe where magic has been found on a frontier world, via the remnants of an ancient civilization. In addition to humanity, there are aliens easily described as elves, dwarves, lion-men, and bear-men. The frontier world has a "wild west" feel as everyone converges to get at the new phenomena. The game uses a simple skill system: skill+d20 vs difficulty. d6's are used for damage rolls (i.e. 2d6, 3d6+2, etc.).
The Realm of the Gateway
Part One - The Magic Realm ed by John Griffin, Matt Nixon (1996) Griffin Games
Part Two - The Science Realm ed (1999)
A small-press fantasy RPG. It uses a system intended to be adapted to various "realms" for different genres, although only the fantasy one was ever published. Character creation is by random-roll attributes and point-bought skill with required profession packages. Action resolution is by rolling 1d20 under attribute + skill. The first book included 9 fantasy races, a magic system with 200 spells, and a psionics system with 20 powers.
Realm of Yolmi
1st ed by Ken Black, Marshall Rose (1978) Avant-Garde Simulations Perspectives
2nd ed (1978)
A spacefaring sci-fi RP set on a future Earth. The PC's are humans, although there are various aliens (including the evil "Yolmi"). The system is class-based: soldiers, cyborgs, scientists, and psychics. Advancement is level-based. It includes starship combat rules, and over 140 creature stats.
The Realms of Atlantasia
1st ed by John Holland (2011) J.A.C.H. Books
A medieval fantasy RPG that focuses on realism, such as damage to weapons and armor. It uses a percentile system, including a magic system with 8 schools of magic and 8 temples of worship, each having their own spells.
Realms of Wor
1st ed by Jeffrey Walker, Steve Ong, David Wainio (2004) Three Sages Games
A medieval fantasy RPG. It uses a skill-based system, with 1d20 resolution rolls. Character creation is class-based, with the option to build your own subclasses. Advancement is by skill improvement by use or training. Combat occurs in ten second rounds and actions are split up within that round as strike ranks, with armor reducing damage. The core rules come in four books: the Player Guidebook, Spellcaster's Guidebook, Game Master Book, and Encounter Encyclopedia.
Recon
1st ed by Joe F. Martin (1982) RPG Inc.
2nd ed by Erick Wujcik (1986) Palladium Books
Deluxe Revised ed (1999)
A modern military RPG and miniatures system set in the Vietnam War, playing U.S. troops against the evil V.C. The game was licensed by Palladium for the 2nd edition, but does not use the Palladium RPG house system.
Red Dwarf: The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Todd Downing, Mark Bruno, John Sullivan, Andrew Kenrick, Lee Hammock (2003) Deep7
A humorous sci-fi RPG based on the television series from Grant Naylor Productions, about characters trapped in an ancient Earth spaceship now lost in the middle of nowhere. It uses the "XPG" system. Action resolution is by rolling under attribute + skill on 2d6. Character creation is limited point based (attribute points and skill points), with adjustments for different types of characters: holograms, mechanoids, gelfs, simulants, and various types of evolved animals (cat, dog, rabbit, iguana, and rat).
Red Shift
1st ed by Paul B. Spence (1998) Grendel
2nd ed (2002)
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, set in 3663 after an interstellar human empire collapsed.
REICHCRAFT : el juego de rol y t´ctico de fantas&icaute;a en la II guerra mundial
1st ed by Diego Martinez Ruiz de Gaona, Nora Ortega Rey (2003) self-published
A Spanish-language modern fantasy RPG, whose title roughly translates as "REICHCRAFT: The RPG & Wargame of Fantasy in the Second World War". Self-published in Bilbao, Spain. It is set in an alternate WWII, where orcs and undeads have joined the Italian army, sinister elves representing Germany have imprisoned humans in concentration camps, and the ratlings follow the orders of the Japanese emperor. Meanwhile the Allies are aided by elves, gnomes, dwarves, humans & golems. It uses a simple system which includes tactical miniatures rules using a metric ruler. Action resolution is based on attribute + 1d10 + modifiers.
Reich Star
1st ed by Simon Bell, Ken Richardson (1991) Creative Encounters
A sci-fi RPG set in 2134 of an alternate history where the Third Reich won WWII and dominated the world. The Third Reich and the Empire of Nippon are in the midst of an age-old Cold War with each other, even as they expand their empires to other star systems. The player characters are revolutionaries trying to overthrow the Third Reich and restore freedom and democracy to Erde and its colonies.
Reign
1st ed by Greg Stolze (2007) Schroedinger's Cat Press
A fantasy genre RPG using the "One-Roll Engine" from Godlike: Superhero Roleplaying in a World on Fire. It includes an original setting, magic system, and rules for resolving group conflicts. Actions are resolved by rolling d10's equal to stat plus skill. The number of matches (i.e. d10's with the same value) indicate speed of success, while the number matched indicates quality of success.
Remember Tomorrow: Near Future Role-Playing
1st ed by Gregor Hutton (2010) BoxNinja
A sci-fi literary cyberpunk GMless RPG with no specified setting, although sample brand names and factions are included. Each scene has a focus player character, and one of the other players acts as GM by playing on the opposing faction. Characters have three numerical stats rated from 1 to 10 called Ready, Willing, and Able - as well as two descriptive stats called Positive Condition (PCon) and Negative Condition (NCon). Opposition factions have a single stat called Influence. Resolution is by each side rolling 3d10, with each die at or under the three PC stats (or the faction's Influence) counting as a success. Each player creates both a PC and an opposing faction, including choosing a descriptive Identity, Motivation, PCon, and NCon; and for PCs distributing 12 points among the three stats.
Renegade Legion: Legionnaire
1st ed by Michael A. Stackpole, A. Peters (1990) FASA
A small-unit tabletop sci-fi combat system, covering infantry to tanks. Part of a wargame trilogy with RL: Interceptor dealt with air combat and RL: Leviathan. It has a unique system for vehicle armor, where differing weapons affected different 2D shapes of armor blocks. Set in year 6830, PC's include starfighter pilots, grav tank commander, or other adventurer. Fight the oppressive Terran Overlord Government of the Roman-style empire centered around Earth. A few military units defected from the empire to protect the alien races of the Commonwealth and became known as the Renegade Legion. Legionnaire details the history of Earth and seven alien races and provides combat focused rules. cf. Therion's Renegade Legion page.
Resolute: The Superhero RPG
1st ed by Michael T. Desing (2008) Teddy Bear Press
A simple superhero roleplaying game, with an original setting of a modern Earth under siege by tyrranical aliens, the Messari, who have made several invasion attempts starting 13 years ago. It uses an original system. Resolution is by 2d6 + stat versus difficulty. Stats ranging from -1 (Impaired, lifting 20 lbs or 5 mph speed) to +13 (Supreme, lifting 500 tons or light speed travel). Character creation is open point-based, with eight attributes and over 50 superpowers.
Rêve de Dragon
1st (French) ed by Denis Gerfaud (1985) Nouvelles Editions Fantastiques Nouvelles Editions Fantastiques Ludodélire
2nd (French) ed (1993) Multisim
1st (English) ed (2002) Malcontent Games
A French-language fantasy RPG, set in an ever changing and poetic world dreamed by dragons. The PC's are travellers there, who walk along the Low and High Lands of dream, and fight magic dangers and dream creatures. One of the best-selling games in France. A beginner's version of the game was also made, entitled "Oniros". There is also an English edition, published electronically.
Revelation: The Modern Superheroic Horror Role-Playing Game
1st ed by James C. Taylor Jr., Jason Knizley (1998) Happy Nebula Adventure Publishing
A modern horror game where the PCs are members of an ancient organization based in England dedicated to fighting the supernatural, and in particular demons known as the "Shaetan". The PCs are all superhuman, including five types: Child of the Vampire, Dead Man Walking, Eternal Hero, Nephilim, and Reluctant Werewolf. It includes four magic subsystems for witchcraft, sorcery, psionics, and faith.
Rhand: Morning Star Missions
1st ed by Barry Nakazano, David McKenzie (1984) Leading Edge
A science-fantasy RPG with an in-depth combat system, predecessor to Living Steel. It is set on the planet Rhand about 500 years after the "Apocalypse", where alien "Spectrals" are invading. It uses a slightly simplified version of the combat system in Sword's Path: Glory (which is very complex by most standards). It includes rules for magic, fantasy creatures, etc.
Ribbon Drive
1st ed by Joe McDonald (2009) Buried Without Ceremony
A GMless cooperative storytelling game about a modern-day road trip. It uses randomly chosen songs from mix tapes that the players supply to guide choices. Each player creates a character by choosing a name, two desired futures for the character, and three traits. The players then take turns framing scenes. There are rules for obstacles that may result in crossing off traits, achieving futures, or crossing off (transcending) futures. The first player character to cross off both futures becomes the protagonist.
The Riddle of Steel
1st ed by Jacob Norwood, Rick McCann, Ben Moore (2002) Driftwood Publishing
A fantasy RPG set on an original world, Weyrth. It focuses on a realistic, turn-less combat system which is tactically demanding and deadly -- based on study of European Renaissance fighting techniques. It uses a dice pool system where you roll a number of d10's against a target number, counting number of successes. It also has a core system of Spiritual Attributes, which gives you extra dice for following defined goals or ties for your character (such as a destiny, a loved one, or a faith).
Rifts
1st ed by Kevin Siembieda (1990) Palladium Books
Ultimate ed (2005)
A science fantasy post-apocalyptic game about a world where nuclear strikes set off a magical transformation of the Earth. Visible ley lines of magical energy spring up, along with inter- dimensional "rifts" which brought in aliens and monsters. The system is a variant of the Palladium System. The game features many augmented humans and massive firepower (up to personal nukes!), facilitated by "Mega-damage" where each point is 100 normal "hit points".
Ring of Changes
1st ed by Ben Wright (2010) self-published
A fantasy RPG centered on alchemy as a codified and narrow form of magic, inspired by the Japanese anime FullMetal Alchemist. The intended emphasis mechanical and story levels is on making sacrifices towards a goal and facing difficult choices. The book is self-published as a print-on-demand book via Lulu.com.
Ringwielder
1st ed by Dennis Drew (1990) self-published
A shareware science fantasy RPG set on a giant generational starship using mystic "Psycho-Manipulative Energy" that had a catastrophic accident shortly after. The systems went haywire and rewrote the environment and people to match fictional characters and locales. The PCs are "Ringwielders" that have entered into an agreement with the central computer to protect all life on the ship, armed with rings that can have up to 36 powers. Character creation is random-roll, rolling for powers, the 8 primary abilities, and the 20 secondary abilities.
Ringworld
1st ed by Sherman Kahn, John Hewitt, Lynn Willis, Sandy Petersen, Charlie Krank, Rudy Kraft (1983) Chaosium
A sci-fi RPG based on the Larry Niven's novels: set on an artificial mega-world (a ring around its star) with a melting pot of races and technology. It uses a variant of Chaosium's Basic Role-playing percentile system. Character races are human, Kzin, or Puppeteer.
Road Rebels
1st ed by Dale L. Gordon (1989) self-published
A post-apocalyptic RPG in the genre of the "Road Warrior" films. It uses a percentile system (roll under skill on d100). Character creation has seven random-roll attributes on a 3-18 scale (STR, LOOKS, DEX, CON, SIZ, CHA, SPD), random-roll social class, and point-bought skills. It includes rules for repairing and modifying vehicles, done with flowcharts. Combat is table-based and complex.
Roanoke
1st ed by Clint Krause (2006) Clint Krause Games
Roanoke is a short alternate historical role-playing game of mystery and action, set at the Roanoke colony in America between 1587 and 1590 (when it disappeared). It provides several options for threats to the colony, ranging from conspiracies, monsters, zombies, and others. It uses a variant of the Wushu game system, by Daniel Bayn. It adds a Doom point mechanic, where players can trade success now for a grisly fate later.
Robotech the Roleplaying Game
Book One: Macross ed by Kevin Siembieda (1986) Palladium Books
A sci-fi RPG based on the Japanese animated TV series of giant humanoid robots ("mecha"). It uses a variant of the Palladium FRPG system.
Robotech II: The Sentinels
1st ed by Kevin Siembieda (1988) Palladium Books
This is a sci-fi RPG based on a proposed sequel to the Robotech TV series. It is set in the same universe, dealing with a starship seeking help for Earth against the Invid. It uses a variant of the Palladium FRPG system.
Robot Warriors
1st ed by Steve Perrin, George MacDonald (1986) Hero Games
A sci-fi RPG about giant robot combat. The rules are a variant of the 3rd edition Champions rules, scaled up for truly massive sizes. It also includes human pilot creation rules.
Rocket Age
1st ed by Ken Spencer (2010) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited
A retro sci-fi RPG, set in the late 1930's of an alternate universe where in 1931 Einstein, Tesla, and Ray Armstrong rode the first rocket ship to Mars. It uses a version of the "Vortex system" that first appeared in Doctor Who: Adventures in Time and Space (2009). Resolution is by adding attribute + skill + 2d6 versus difficulty - possibly modified by spending Story Points. Character creation is point-based, setting 6 attributes (Awareness, Coordination, Ingenuity, Presence, Resolve, and Strength) along with 12 skills and various traits.
Rocky and Bullwinkle RPG
1st ed by David Cook, Warren Spector (1988) TSR
A humorous storytelling RPG based on the cartoon TV show. The boxed set includes 10 hand puppets (unrelated to the system). The system (such as it is) starts with storytelling using story cards, adding in action resolution using spinners.
Rogue Swords of the Empire
1st ed by Joseph Hillmer, George Rahm (1993) Better Games
A fantasy mini-RPG, published in Fantasy Gamer magazine, issue #2. It is based on the RPG Barony.
Rolemaster
1st ed by S. Coleman Charlton, Peter C. Fenlon, Kurt H. Fischer, Terry K. Amthor (1980) Iron Crown Enterprises
2nd ed (1984)
Standard System ed by Coleman Charlton, John Curtis, Pete Fenlon, Steve Martin (1995)
FRP ed by S. Coleman Charlton, John Curtis (1999)
A traditional fantasy-genre game, originally designed as a modular addition to other games ("Arms Law", "Spell Law", "Character Law", "Claw Law", and "Campaign Law"). The system uses skill plus an open-ended percentile roll resolved on a table, with tables for each weapon and skill. Character creation was originally random-roll attributes and limited point-buy skills, modified by choice of class. A given class had its own cost for each skill type (i.e. weapon skill costs 10 for a magician but 3 for a warrior). Later they added a separate attribute point-buy system.
Roleplayer
1st ed by Matthew P. King (1983) Roleplayer Enterprises
A universal RPG system, with sections on medieval fantasy, mutant powers, modern horror, and futuristic weaponry. As an example so GMs can design their own, there is a single sample monster: the argent wombat.
Roma Imperious: Alternate World History
1st ed by William Corrie III (2004) HinterWelt Enterprises
An alternate history where during the third century Constantine embraced Celtic magic and took over the Roman Empire. It details the world of 1461 in this alternate history, including pre-Viking era Norsemen, a Chinese empire called the Jade Empire, and African states like Axum and the Empire of Ghana. It uses a variant of the "Iridium" system, which originally appeared in Tales of Gaea. Character creation includes random-roll attributes (best of 3d20 for each of eleven attributes), followed by choosing one of 26 classes which influence skills. The basic game also includes over 30 Foes and 13 pregenerated templates for fast play.
Ruby...Worlds beyond Dream
1st ed by Greg Saunders (2007) Fire Ruby Studios
A spacefaring science fiction game set in distant time and space, where the legacy of humanity is the modified NuMen and a binary star system of Golden and Red, initially established by privately-sponsored colony ships. All NuMen project themselves into "Shell" bodies using instant communication. The player characters are Lucids - a minority fringe who are able to remember their projection into bodies. The game uses a dice pool system with six attributes: Reason, Volition, Ego, Body, Grace, Vitality. Resolution is by rolling d6s equal to attribute, where 4-6 is a positive outcome and 1 is a negative outcome. The total outcomes are compared against the difficulty.
RuinCrawl
1st ed by Tom K. Loney (2007) Peryton Publishing
A pulp fantasy game inspired by old-fashioned sword and sorcery paperbacks. It uses the minimalist TAG (Tom's Adventure Gaming) system. Resolution uses 2d6 against a target number of difficulty minus attribute. Character creation includes races including elf, dwarf, simian, and goblin; and character classes including Amazon/Barbarian, Sword-Arm, Cutthroat, Thief, and Sage.
Rules To Live By
1st ed by John Kilgallon, Mike Young, Sandy Antunes (2001) Interactivities, Inc.
This is a universal system for live-action role-playing (LARP). It uses dice for mechanics (somewhat unusual for the LARP world), with resolution of attribute + skill + 1d6 vs difficulty. Combat uses the same basic mechanics, and assigns levels of damage marked as stars on the character's badge.
Rune
1st ed by Robin D. Laws (2001) Atlas Games
A fantasy-genre RPG based on the computer game Rune from Human Head Studios, set in a land of Scandanavian myth. The system is adapted from Ars Magica with simplifications. Resolution is attribute + skill + 1d10 vs difficulty (or vs other roll).
RuneQuest
1st ed by Steve Perrin, Ray Turney, Steve Henderson, Warren James, Greg Stafford (1978) Chaosium
2nd ed (1979)
3rd ed by Steve Perrin, Greg Stafford, Steve Henderson, Lynn Willis (1984) Avalon Hill
4th ed by Matthew Sprange (2006) Mongoose Publishing
A fantasy-genre RPG set in the original world of Glorantha. Glorantha is a low-tech world (often bronze age) where religion, cults, and magic are of constant importance. It uses a percentile skill-based system which was later published separately as the Basic Roleplaying system. Action resolution is by rolling under skill (0-100) on percentile dice, or by roll on a "resistance table" which compares opposed attributes (with +/- 5% per attribute point). Character creation uses random-roll attributes (3-18), and skills selected by profession. It includes several magic systems, including a involved Runic Magic system. Magical power could be boosted by secrets learned in various cults. The third and fourth editions separated the system and magic from the setting of Glorantha, though Glorantha was still one of the setting choices.
Rune Stryders
1st ed by Matt Drake, Mike Fiegel (2003) Politically Incorrect Games
A fantasy-genre RPG, set on a gritty fantasy world ("Rhun") where wars are fought with magically-powered war machines of stone, wood or exotic materials (i.e. "Rune Stryders") -- an homage to giant robotic mecha of Japanese animation. There are no fantasy races (i.e. elves or dwarves) and few large monsters. Instead, there are wars and political intrigue among the various human nations. The PCs are by default expected to be a band of mercenaries. It uses a dice pool system. Action resolution is to roll a number of d10s equal to (skill + 1). Each die under your attribute score is one success.
Run Out the Guns
1st ed by Jason Hawkins, Todd McGovern (1998) Iron Crown Enterprises
A pirate swashbuckling-action RPG set in the historical 17th century: specifically the Carribean circa 1660. The game includes a wealth of historical detail and background on the era. The system is based on (and compatible with) the Rolemaster system, but simplified to be suitable for beginners. There are pre-generated characters provided but no character creation system in the basic game. The ship-to-ship combat rules are also sketchy.
Run Robot Red
1st ed by Annie Rush (2004) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A humorous sci-fi RPG about little robots controlled by totalitarian overlords. It is set on Widenet YT, a vast worldship ruled by the tyrannical and mysterious Cel Tron Stroma.
Rus
1st ed by Mark Chapman, Joe Caruso (1990) Rus Games
A fantasy RPG set in the mythic version of medieval Russia. It includes elemental nature priests ("Volkhvy"), necromancers ("Koldun"), and Christian missionaries. It uses a system with classes (Russia-specific) and skills, with skill-based advancement. The combat system is fairly involved.
The Rustbelt: tales of tenacity, depravity, and hope
1st ed by Marshall Burns (2010) Beyond the Wire Productions
A post-apocalyptic roleplaying game inspired by The Stand, The Road, and the Mad Max films. It is set in a future where a mystical power known as The Rust that corrupts everything has destroyed civilization. It uses a dice pool system where characters have three pools - Blood, Sweat, & Tears - that are called upon to push failed rolls into successes. There are no skills, but there are eight attributes: Tough, Savvy, Grizzled, Slick, Thorough, Personable, Cagey and Uncanny. It also includes a number of descriptive psyche traits including Hunger (i.e. desires), Vice (habits to fall back on to cope), Faith (they believe in) and Woe (things they regret).
Sailor Moon RPG
1st ed by Mark C. MacKinnon (1998) Guardians of Order
A schoolgirl-superhero RPG based on the Japanese animated TV series, which includes a thorough description of the series including characters and background. It uses the "Tri-Stat" system from Big Eyes, Small Mouth, altered only by giving genre-specific traits.
Sandman
The Map of Hamal ed by Mark Acres, Andria Hayday (1985) Pacesetter
Key to the Inland Sea ed (1985)
A surreal RPG scenario series where the (pre-made) player characters wake up to find they have no memory of who they are or how they came to be there. The published game was originally intended to be in a contest to identify who the PC's are, but folded. PC abilities would slowly be revealed in the published scenarios -- clues as to their identity. The system is a percentile system with a universal action table, a simplified version of the Chill mechanics.
Santa's Soldiers
1st ed by Bill Kte'pi, Todd Downing, Gavin Downing (2000) Deep7
A light-hearted 28-page mini-RPG about a paramilitary army of well-armed elves who guard Santa and Christmas against the power-hungry Easter Bunny, Halloween's Boogieman, and the insane Anti-Claus -- using ultra-violent techniques so Santa doesn't have to get his hands dirty.
Savage Worlds
1st ed by Shane Lacy Hensley (2003) Pinnacle Entertainment Group
2nd ed by Shane Lacy Hensley (2005) Great White Games
A universal system with a focus on fast resolution. It uses a step-die rules system related to Deadlands. You roll a d4 to d12 (depending on your stat) plus modifiers, and a result over 4 or higher than your opponent's is a success. Combat uses an initiative system using playing cards, where each player draws a number of cards each turn. The basic rules include seven races: humans, elves, dwarves, half-elves, mantids, saurians and Atlanteans. It also includes a short section on Arcane backgrounds and powers.
Scared Stiff: the B-Movie Horror Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Gene Stanley Pritchard, Mike Demetro (2002) Guild Hall Press
A humorous RPG about B-movie Horror films. The PCs (known as "Victims of Circumstance" or VCs) are rated in Flaws rather than attributes, so that rather than Strength and Dexterity they are rated in Weakness, Clumsiness, and Ignorance (Primary) as well as Cowardice, Paranoia and Superstition (Secondary). Action resolution is either dice-using or diceless. Dice rolling is to roll over your modified Flaw rating on 2d6 to succeeed. This is intended as the first of several B-movies backgrounds using the "RPG-13" B-Movie game system.
Scimitar
1st ed by Ewan Murray (1998) Lance and Crown Games
A fantasy genre RPG set on an original feudal-era world, Thaythorn, and published on CD-ROM. Thaythorn includes versions of Elf, Dwarf and Goblin races -- as well as the reptilian Cy Kell, the canine Yarinese, and the insectoid Ythari. It uses a simple skill-based system. Action resolution is based on attribute + skill + 2d6 (where sixes open-end) vs difficulty. There are four attributes (Strength, Agility, Intellect, Presence), each of which have two sub-attributes. Character creation is limited point-based.
Second Dawn
1st ed by Art Wiederhold, George J. Herget (1982) Arrose Enterprises
A fantasy genre RPG with elements of sci-fi, inspired by the The Avenger of Thule novel by Art Wiederhold.
The Secret Fire
1st ed by George Strayton (2011) Secret Fire Games
An original game system derived from Dungeons & Dragons, using the Open Game License. The core rules have four classes and four races: cleric, warrior, thief, wizard; and Dwarf, Elf, Human, Halfling. It adds rules for Energy Points, which refresh each day and are used for Special Effects such as pinning an opponent, re-casting a prayer, and inflicting extra damage. In addition, each PC has a descriptive Good trait, Neutral trait, and Evil trait - and regains Energy Points based on expressing these. There are also five wound levels in addition to hit point. Advancement is level-based, with the core rules only covering up to level 10.
The Secret Lives of Gingerbread Men
1st ed by Annie Rush (2004) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A simple RPG suitable for children as well as adults. The PCs are gingerbread men who become magically animated for the twelve days prior to Christmas, who rush around the home, having adventures, getting in and out of trouble. The setting includes a nasty cat, a helpful but hungry dog, the King of the Rats, the Oracle atop the refrigerator, and the Cookiesmith.
The Secret of Zir'An
1st ed by Jason Armenta, Martin Caplan, Marcus Flores, Aram Gutowski, Chris Hockabout (2005) Paragon Games White Wolf
A pulp fantasy RPG set on an original fantasy world, Zir'An, dominated by magical technology including zeppelins, guns, and so forth. It is in a state similar to the decade preceding WWII. There are powerful beings called Fanes which have started to dominate in the several millenia since the gods disappeared. There is now an uneasy peace between a number of allied nations who work together to keep the Fane dominated Tilerian Hegemony at bay. There are also the independent and mercenary empires in the south, and the Forsaken Lands such as The Periphery, a collection of islands in the far south. It is inhabited by the dwarf-like Dolonorri, the giant primitive Gogachi, the beast-like Neolli, the secretive and immortal Zhalanti, as well as the human Ianers. It uses a simple system which uses attribute + aptitude + 1d10 vs difficulty, where the four-level skills (basic/advanced/expert/elite) can give an automatic success. Character creation is by a point-based lifepath system, which includes various packages representing different nations and factions.
Secrets & Lies: A Hardboiled Detective Game
1st ed by Daniel Bayn (2009) Bayn.org
A modern detective RPG. It uses a dice pool mechanic where the player rolls a number of dice equal to their current stat plus optional "flop dice" representing added difficulty. Any match among the stat dice, or between flop dice and stat dice, indicates failure. A player can remove one or two dice after rolling if the test relates to the characters' defined "means" (character concept) or "motive" (primary drive). A test can either be "soft-boiled" or "hard-boiled" - referring to whether failure is a minor setback or a major problem. Stats to test include the five attributes (Savvy, Moxie, Guts, Nerve, and Mojo) as well as relationships. All stats and relationships start at 2, and are temporarily increased in play ("taking a hit") until they are rolled.
Seeker the Role Playing Game
1st ed by Brian St.Claire-King (2012) Vajra Enterprises
A modern-day magic RPG where the player characters are wandering mystics on the back roads of the rural US. It uses ORC-L, a rules-lite variant of the Organic Rule Components system used in Fates Worse than Death and Tibet the RPG. Each character approaches enlightenment, self-improvement or wisdom in a unique way, and gains unique abilities from it. The core rules includes an introductory adventure, "Weaponized Honeybees".
Sengoku
1st ed by Mark Arsenault, Anthony Bryant (1999) Gold Rush Games
Revised ed (2001) Gold Rush Games
A historical RPG set in 16th century Japan, with careful attention dedicated to historical background and information. It uses the Fuzion system.
Senzar
1st ed by Todd King, Johnny Bruner (1995) Nova Eth Publications
A fantasy RPG set in a multiverse ("Senzar") with numerous gods and immortals. It uses a variety of dice and mechanics (similar to AD&D). Combat is d20 + offense - defense : 9 or less misses, 20+ is a critical hit. Character creation is class-based with point-bought attributes, advantages, and disadvantages. Spell and combat advancement is level-based (although skill and attribute advancement is independent of this).
Septimus
1st ed by Bill Coffin (2009) West End Games West End Games Purgatory Publishing
A space opera game set inside a Dyson Sphere made by unknown aliens, and inhabited by colonists from a crumbling human empire. The setting includes elements of cyberpunk, transhumanism, and light mecha as well as bits of fantasy. It uses a variant of the D6 System from West End's Star Wars game, including Fate Point instead of Force Points.
Serenity Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Jamie Chambers (2005) Sovereign Press
A space opera RPG, adapted from the Firefly TV series and Serenity feature film by Joss Whedon. It uses a system adapted from the Sovereign Stone fantasy game. Attributes and skills are rated in a a step die system with twelve ranks: d2, d4, d6, d8, d10, d12, d12+d2, d12+d4, d12+d6, d12+d8, d12+d10, d12+d12. Action resolution is by rolling attribute die plus skill die. Characters have six attributes (Agility, Strength, Vitality, Alertness, Intelligence, Willpower), along with skills and advantages. It also includes a plot point mechanic. Plot Points can be spent before a roll for an extra die (costing 1 per rank), after the roll to raise the total (costing 1 per +1), or to manipulate the story (scaled from 1-3 for convenient coincidence to 11+ for "saving your bacon").
Serial Homicide Unit
1st ed by Michael S. Miller, Kat Miller (2008) Incarnadine Press
A modern-day criminal investigation RPG. The players role-play potential victims of a serial killer at the same time as they play investigators trying to catch the killer. They can create chains of evidence based their role in the investigation. At the end of each turn, if they fail to solve the crime, they must randomly open an envelope with the name of one of the potential victims to determine who is murdered.
Seven Leagues: A fantasy roleplaying game of Faerie
1st ed by Hieronymous (2002) Malcontent Games
A fairy-tale RPG including modern fantasy from magical realism to gothic urban magick. It uses a simple system, called "Roll 13". Resolution is by rolling 1d12 + attribute + modifiers, where a total of 13 or higher is a success. Character creation is by choosing a player-created descriptive Aspect (such as "a fairy princess" or "a mighty warrior"), and distributing 13 points among the three attributes (each rated 1 to 7): Head (mental), Heart (social/emotional), and Hand (physical). Characters may also have a number of Charms (magical abilities) equal to their lowest attribute, and optional Taboos (i.e. limitations/hindrances which increase their number of Charms).
The Seventh Seal
1st ed by Scott R. Mitchell, Edwyn Kumar, Mark Bruno, Scott Lynch (2002) Creative Illusions
Revised ed (2005) Morrigan Press
A modern-day fantasy RPG based on biblical mythology as presented in the Book of Revelation. Six of the seven seals have been broken, and demons are wandering the Earth in human guise seeking to bring about the final apocalypse. The PC's are Sentinels: mortal guardians of Heaven invested with supernatural powers. They are organized into different celestial orders corresponding to the archangels (Michael, Gabriel, etc.). It uses a dice pool system, where actions are resolved by rolling over a target number on a number of d6's equal to attribute plus skill. Character creation is limited point-based.
SewerSide: Are You Slimy Enough for the Sewers?
1st ed by Ashok Desai (2003) Eldritch Design
n A humorous scifi RPG published in electronic format, where the PCs are hideous mutants banished to the sewers below a modern-day town. The premise is that all ugly people were declared mutants and locked in the sewers, and since radioactive waste was also dumped there, soon there were even more hideous genuine mutants. There are eight strains of mutant: Bloaters (overweight and bloated humanoids), Bugs (insectoid monstrosities), Furries (humanoid animals prized as slaves by kinky folks), Goops (big balls of boneless slime), Hissies (reptilian mutants), Psychos (big-brained mutants with a knack for psychic powers), Skinbags (incredibly skinny mutants whose skin sags around them like some sort of cloak) and Sushi (fish people). There are a large assortment of humorous mutations described. Action resolution is to roll (skill) d10's and take the best, then add attribute. Character creation is either random-roll or selected.
Sexy Deadly
1st ed by Tony Dowler (2009) Planet Thirteen Games
A GMless competitive strategy card game with narrative and role-playing elements, about female super-soldiers who have dedicated their life to killing, espionage, disrupting and protecting conspiracies.
The Shab-al-Hiri Roach
1st ed by Jason Morningstar (2006) Bully Pulpit Games
A darkly comedic horror one-shot role-playing game about an evil Sumerian mind-controlling cockroach preying on the faculty in a small New England university campus in 1919. It uses a GM-less narrational system, where players compete to gain academic Reputation by bidding to winning one of a series of narrated scenes, driven by drawn cards. The winner of the scene is the one who rolls the highest number on the dice. If you are possessed by the Roach, you roll a massive d12. However, if you end the game possessed by the Roach, you lose. To lose it, you have to regurgitate the Roach, by subliming away something you care about, which makes your dice weaker. The game comes with a packet of 40 cards and a rubber cockroach.
Shades of Earth: Earth History with a Twist
1st ed by William Corrie III (2003) HinterWelt Enterprises
An alternate-history RPG with a percentile skill-based system (the "Iridium System"), including a setting in 1938 Europe where secret organizations use magic powers to prepare for the coming war. Character creation includes random-roll attributes (best of 3d20 for each of eleven attributes), followed by choosing one of 23 classes which influence skills.
Shades of Fantasy
1st ed by Steven Bode (1993) IDD Co.
A "High Fantasy" genre RPG, which attempts a medieval feel with monotheistic religion and faerie influences. It includes 15 races including Fey Folk, Devilkin, Kobolds, Penitent Angels, and Changelings. It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation is random-roll attributes (modified by race), choice of occupation or occupations, and point-bought skills and advantages. Skills and advantages outside of your occupation cost double.
Shades of Heroes
1st ed by Jason Kirby, Jason Thomas, Dean Meuggenburg, Shiree Nabours, Jon Kawa, Brian Henrikson, Jon Kawa, Jason Thomas, Dean Meuggenburg (1998) Argonaut Game Studios
A fantasy genre RPG.
The Shadow of Yesterday
1st ed by Clinton Nixon (2004) Anvilwerks
Revised ed (2005)
A sword-and-sorcery genre RPG which attempts to meld the standard fantasy role-playing and "hard-charging narrative engine". It is set in a post-apocalyptic fantasy world (known as "Near") where the apocalyptic creation of a moon has ravaged cultures and thrown the fate of the world into question.
Shadowrun
1st ed by Bob Charrette, Paul Hume, Tom Dowd (1989) FASA
2nd ed (1992)
3rd ed (1998)
4th ed (2005) FanPro
A fantasy-cyberpunk game, set in a future where magic returns to the Earth, and many people are transformed into elves, dwarves, and trolls. It uses a dice-pool system, rolling d6's equal to stat vs a target number of difficulty.
Shadow, Sword, & Spell
1st ed by Richard Iorio II, James Maliszewski (2010) Rogue Games
A fantasy RPG emulating pulp fantasy writers like Robert E. Howard, L. Sprague de Camp, and Fritz Leiber. It uses the 12° System also used in Colonial Gothic Revised and Thousand Suns. Resolution is by rolling 2d12 under a target number found by adding attribute + skill + modifiers. Character creation is limited point-based, dividing 45 points among 5 attributes (Brawn, Quickness, Toughness, Wits, and Will), creating freeform "Hook" that lets you earn action points if brought up in the game, picking a Background option (Culture and Modifier), and then buying skills.
S.H.A.L.T.
1st ed by Brian F. Schreurs, Joshua D. Thompson, J.D. Falk (1988) Coltrane Publications
A humorous small-press sci-fi RPG, with 10 races including giant Neptunian Space Bears. It uses a minimalist system.
Shambles
1st ed by Duane O'Brien (2005) a terrible idea
A humorous horror-parody RPG where the player characters are all zombies, who one day simply woke up dead with a craving for brains. It is played in one of three modes: "Fast Food Zombie Fun", "I Want My Life Back", and "Feeding Frenzy". It uses a simple dice pool system called LAFFS, for "Light, Adaptable, Fast, Flexible." Each character has six stats: Lurch, Flail, Clutch, Brawn, Chuck, and Sense. Resolution is based on rolling a number of d6s equal to stat, where each die over the difficulty is a success. Players can modify their own or others' rolls by spending LAFF points, earned by making the GM laugh. Zombie characters generally lose 1 hit point per day unless they eat human brains. The basic game also includes overviews of 6 agencies and organizations that oppose or aid (!) zombies.
The Shard RPG
1st ed (2008) Shard Studios
A fantasy-genre RPG set on an Eastern-themed world inhabited by anthropomorphic animals, known as Dardünah or the World of the False Dawn. It uses a d6 dice-pool system, where you roll a number of d6s equal to skill minus difficulty, and each die result of a 4, 5, or 6 is a success. It includes a ritual magic system.
Shards of the Stone
1st ed by Jared Nielson, Sean Patrick Fannon (2000) Obsidian Studios
1st ed by Jared Nielson (2001) InterStrike, Inc.
A fantasy-genre RPG using the Fuzion system. The setting is a multiverse where a primordial stone shattered into 25 elements: including Air, Earth, Fire, and Water but also Law, Creativity, and Love. These elements can be physically mined, grown, and so forth from the worlds which resulted from the shattering. There are usual races of elves, dwarves, orcs, ogres, and goblins -- plus winged folk, reptile-men, and beast-men. cf. the official website.
Shattered Dreams
1st ed by Matthew D. Grau, Christopher Dorn, Timothy R. Erickson, Lance P. Johnstone (1994) Apex Publications Inc
A horror RPG set in a dream-world, where Nightmares are evil beings that creep into our minds when our souls are bared and corrupt our beings. The PC's are Dreamwalkers who have powers within the dreamworld. There were 3 supplements/adventure books: "Awake and Alone", "Liquid Dreams", and "Of Sound Mind".
The Shattered Sky
1st ed by Paul Lucas (1997) Propaganda Publishing
A science fantasy RPG set in the shards of a Dyson Sphere which was broken 5000 years ago, with distances measured in "Earths". It includes aliens, centaurs, talking dolphins, and orcs: all created using genotech and "uplift." The magic is ostensibly based on nanotechnology. The system is percentile-based.
Shatterzone
1st ed by Ed Stark (1993) West End Games
A cyberpunk space opera game, set in the late 25th century after the accidental discovery of an unexplainable phenomena called the "Shatterzone". Space is controlled by the monolithic Consortium and Fleet, along with various megacorporations. It uses a variant of the Torg system, with modified Drama Deck, and rules for psionics, aliens, and space combat.
Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Dead Duke
1st ed by Chris Engle (2005) Hamster Press
A pregenerated scenario book using the minimalist Engle Matrix Game system. This includes several murder mystery scenarios where the players are Sherlock Holmes and associates. The system has explicit negotiation of arguments and results, but leaves the chances for the negotiated outcomes entirely up to the GM.
Shields of Power
1st ed by McLellend, Jacobsen (1990) Shield Maiden
A fantasy genre RPG. Reviewed in White Wolf #25.
Shock: Social Science Fiction
1st ed by Joshua A.C. Newman (2006) The Glyph Press
1.1 ed (2007)
1.2 ed (2009)
A GM-less sci-fi RPG about the clash of technology upon human society. It has no background, but instead players define a world starting with defining a set of two social or personal concerns (Issues) and two revolutionary developments (Shocks) that are the themes of the game. Character creation sets up player characters (Protagonists), and then player sitting to the right of each Protagonist creates and controls the Antagonist, acting as GM. Protagonists are creates by defining 2 Praxis, 3 Features, 2 Links, and 1 Story Goal. The Praxis are each a pair of two themes such as "buying vs. selling" or "help vs. hurt" rated from 1 to 10. The Features, Links, and Story Goal are numberless, player-defined traits. Resolution always defines two non-mutually intents between Protagonist and Antagonist, trying to succeed by rolling on a chosen Praxis scale. The Protagonist rolls a number of dice equal to the number of applicable Features. These can either be d10s to succeed on their own Praxis scale, or d4s to modify the opponent's roll. For both, if rolling multiple dice the player can choose which to use.
Shock:Human Contact
1st ed by Joshua A.C. Newman (2010) The Glyph Press
A near-future sci-fi RPG about a interstellar contact ship that makes first contact with a lost colony of humans in another star system, a variant of the game Shock: Social Science Fiction. It defines more closely the shocks to be dealt with and the phases of play than the original game. Play begins with life on the contact ship, which takes five years to reach its destination. Second is designing the geography, culture, and language of the colony. The third is first contact, which could use a three person envoy team or could use the entire 100 person contactor.
Shooting the Moon
1st ed by Emily Care Boss (2006) Black & Green Games
A GM-less game of romantic rivalry for two or three players, where two rival players compete for the affections of a third. Pitched as a "sequel" to an earlier romantic game, Breaking the Ice.
Shotgun Diaries
1st ed by John Wick (2009) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A zombie survival horror mini roleplaying game, using an early version of a new "FEAR" system. Character creation is by picking an archetype - such as Fast Survivor, Strong Survivor, etc. Resolution uses a simple dice pool where the players rolls a number of d6s based on their character, plus any dice taken from the shared pool, and a bonus die for every character they are with. If the player rolls a 6 on any die, they narrate what happens. Otherwise, the GM does. There is also a Zombie Clock mechanic, which advances every 10 minutes to increase the zombie threat; and a fear mechanic.
Signature
1st ed by Michael Mendoza (2007) 44 Productions
A simple diceless system intended for quick play, easily customized to different settings. It has player-created traits rated from 1 to 3, with 0 being the default. Action resolution is by comparing the higher of trait or modifiers against difficulty or opposing trait. This is modified by spending "Wild Points". The effect of success depends on whether the game is in Narrativist, Gamist, or Simulationist mode. The book is self-published via print-on-demand service Lulu.com.
Sign in Stranger
1st ed by Emily Care Boss (2009) Black & Green Games
A science fiction storytelling game for 2-3 players about first contact of humanity with aliens. The aliens are created during play by the players, by randomly drawing from a set of words submitted by the players at the start of the game.
Silhouette CORE Rules
1st ed by Marc A. Vézina, Paul Lippincott (2003) Dream Pod 9
A universal system. It uses a dice pool, rolling a number of d6's equal to your skill and taking the highest value (each extra six adds one to the result, so two sixes would have a total of seven). Action resolution is attribute plus the skill total vs difficulty. The margin of success or failure is very important in the Silhouette game; in combat, for instance, damage is multiplied by the margin of success, and illnesses and poisons have increasingly severe effects as the margin of failure increases.
Silver Age Sentinels
1st ed by Stephen Kenson, Mark C. MacKinnon, Jeff Mackintosh, Jesse Scoble (2002) Guardians of Order
A superhero RPG set on an original world setting, where superpowered heroes appeared starting in 1942, when an atomic energy test created "Sentinel". It uses a variant of the Tri-Stat system from Big Eyes, Small Mouth, with three core attributes of Body, Mind, and Soul.
Simian Conquest
1st ed by Marshall Rose, Norman Knight (1978) Avant-Garde Simulations Perspetives
A sci-fi RPG inspired by the Planet of the Apes movie series. PC's can be Apes, native Humans, Mutants or Astronauts. The system concentrates on combat and campaign battles.
Simply Roleplaying
1st ed by Bob Portnell, Guy McLimore (1999) Microtactix Games
A universal RPG system, published in electronic format. It is a skill-based system, rolling 2d10 under skill for action resolution. Characters are limited point-bought, with a random number of attribute points, and skill points which depend on age group. There are also advantages and disadvantages which must be balanced (i.e a 1pt advantage requires a 1pt disadvantages).
Simulacron I
1st ed by Mark Manning (1982) Simulacron I
A small-press universal RPG system. It uses five Basic Statistics and a large set of Abilities (i.e. skills). Stats started at 1 and cost the level squared in experience to increase. Characters start with one Ability, and additional Abilities are gained as the Knowledge stat is increased. Action resolution uses 1d20.
Sixcess
1st ed by Benjamin Rogers, Ren (2013) Harsh Realities
A universal system using dice-pool resolution, rolling d6s equal to attribute + skill, where every result over the target number (TN) is one success, and every six rolled is five successes. Character generation uses a point-based "priority" system.
six gun assassins
1st ed by Andrew Lucas (2006) Rebel Minis
A miniatures combat and mini-RPG set in the American Wild West. The system is "Place & Play" rules.
Sketch!
1st ed by Seth Johnson, Brian Schomburg (2000) Corsair Publishing
A humorous mini-RPG (48-page comic format) where the players play "Costumes" -- superpowered entertainers on the planet Sketch. Character creation is by the player drawing the character, or at least copying bits of clip art (provided with the book). The other players then judge how badass the sketched character looks.
Skull & Bones
1st ed by T.S. Luikart, Gareth-Michael Skarka, Ian Sturrock (2003) Green Ronin Publishing
A swashbuckling RPG set in the golden age of piracy in the Carribean, using a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. It adds options to character generation for backgrounds and "fortunes" -- a simple advantage/disadvantage system. There are four new core classes: Buccaneers, Sea Dogs, Shantymen (musicians), Bokors (magicians), and Hougans (magicians). There are also six new prestige classes: three fencers, two sailing (Officers and Warrant Officers), and the Mystic Navigator. It has variant rules for cinematic fighting (adding a parry maneuver), and damage (which is applied first to a character's hit points, and then to their constitution).
Skull and Crossbones
1st ed by Gerald D. Seypura, Anthony LeBoutillier (1980) FGU
A pirate RPG set in the 17th century Caribbean. It includes man-to-man and ship-to-ship combat.
Skymningshem: Andra Imperiet
1st ed by Krister Sundelin, Simon J Berger, Fredrik Ostrozansky (2005) Rävsvans Förlag
A science fiction game that draws inspiration from space opera, wuxia and anime. It uses an improved version of the system in Västmark.
Skyrealms of Jorune
1st ed by Andrew Leker, Miles Teves, Amy Leker (1985) Skyrealms Publishing
2nd ed (1986)
3rd ed (1992) Chessex
A science-fantasy game with a unique setting, a detailed alien world with marooned human colonists. Emphasis is put on the unique races and culture, a mix of humans, human-created sentient animals, and aliens. There is a "magic" of manipulating Isho energy which flows through this world, along with remnant technology. The system is skill-based, changing with editions.
SLA Industries
1st ed by Dave Allsop, Tim Dedopulos, Jared Earle (1993) Nightfall
2nd ed by Dave Allsop, Tim Dedopulos, Jared Earle, Anne Boylan, Morton T. Smith (2000) Hogshead Games
A science fantasy RPG of futuristic urban horror, set in a distant future (the "World of Progress") where an amoral arms corporation ("SLA Industries") has taken over the universe, headed by a power being named "Slayer". PC's work as agents for the company, based on the world-city "Mort". There are 7 races, including users of "The Ebb" -- a magical power that permeates the universe. The system uses 2d10+skill+modifiers to determine success (11+ is a success, 21+ is a notable success). Character creation uses race (1 of 7) and career (1 of 9) templates followed by point allocation. The 2nd edition is largely a reprint of the original with errors corrected, more fiction and art, and a new index.
Sláine: The Role Playing Game of Celtic Heroes
1st ed by Ian Sturrock (2002) Mongoose Publishing
RuneQuest Slaine ed by Aaron Dembski-Bowden (2007) Mongoose Publishing
A fantasy RPG set in Tir Nan Og, a land of ancient Celtic legends mixed with prehistoric fact, an adaptation of the comic book series. The PCs are members of the Tribes of the Earth Goddess, called on to raid or war against rival tribes, quest after ancient treasures, or defend their lands against invading sea-devils. The rules are a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D, and require the core D&D rules for character creation and combat, as well as many skill and feat descriptions. It uses an alternate magic system where characters pay in "Earth Points" for spells cast, and spells are broken down according to their cost instead of level.
Slammin
1st ed by Jackson Tegu (2012) self-published
A satirical GM-less mini-RPG where the player characters are all douche-bag hipsters trying to look cool and hook up over a week - Tuesday through Saturday. Each player chooses a playbook at the beginning of the game, but they are all identical: The Hipster. Actions may result in gains like "improve your look", or "change your jam", etc. Published with two other mini-RPGs: Tower of Hats and Superhero.
Slasher Flick
1st ed by Cynthia Celeste Miller (2009) Spectrum Game Studios
A horror RPG emulating slasher films, where the players have primary characters as well as secondary characters who are all potential victims of the psycho killer(s). Secondary characters are created by a group process. Characters have four stats (Brawn, Finesse, Brains, and Spirit) that have trinary ratings (Poor, Normal, or Good). Combat (or "kill scenes") uses stat checks to measure loss or gain of survival points. Players can al also gain "genre points" for playing to the conventions of the genre, that can be used later to help.
S/lay W/Me
1st ed by Ron Edwards (2009) Adept Press
A two-player storytelling game of a short sword and sorcery tale involving a monster and a lover. The two players are "You" (who creates and plays the hero) and "I" (who creates and plays a lover and a monster). Character creation is quick - the "You" player reads a ritual statement, then chooses a brief character concept and adds a ten-word description of the Hero's physical appearance. "You" then chooses a general setting from a list of one-line descriptions and a Goal for the Hero. The "I" player then fleshes out the setting, and creates a lover and a monster for the Hero to deal with. "I" also sets a Lover score (the number of times the player can script "Go" events aimed at the lover) and a Monster Score (the number of dice "I" can roll before the "Match" ends).
S.L.U.G.S. (Satanic, Loathable, Unwholesome Game System)
1st ed by Gregory Donner (1994) Donner Party Press
A tongue-in-cheek mini-RPG where the player characters are members of an organization called P.E.A.C.E. (People of Evil Allied for the Corruption of Everything), with the goal of reaching -1000 Karma, at which point they descend into Hell and become a lesser demon. The cover featured a cheerleader with horns and pointy ears with "P.E.A.C.E." written on her sweater. It uses percentile-based system, with mechanics based on rolling under the appropriate attribute to succeed in an action (a Feat). The attributes are Brains, Charm, Combat, Constitution, and Piety. Personality Qualities are the seven deadly sins, also rated as percentiles. If a Personality Trait is 75+, a player has to fail that Trait to avoid indulging whenever possible. Each character gets a Talent, which adds +30 to an appropriate stat when attempting an action.
Small Space
1st ed by Denton R. Elliot (1985) Doc's Games
A sci-fi mini-RPG from the publisher of Dinky Dungeons, published in a 3''x5'' ziplock bag(!). It uses the same system, expanded by skills. The system has binary skills which are bought using points based on your attributes (Physical Points equal to your Physical, Mental Points equal to your Mental). It also adds spaceship generation and combat rules, futuristic weapons, invention rules, alien races, planet generation, and initiative rules.
Smallville Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Cam Banks, Joseph Blomquist, Mary Blomquist, Roberta Olson, Josh Roby, Amanda Valentine (2010) Margaret Weis Productions
A superhero roleplaying game based on the television series, using a non-traditional variant on Margaret Weis Productions' Cortex system called "Cortex Plus". The six core attributes for characters are different personal values: Duty, Glory, Justice, Love, Power, and Truth. Rather than skills, characters have rated Relationships with other PCs as well as significant NPCs. Both Values and Relationships are rated on a step die system from d4 through d12. There is also a system of Plot Points.
Soap: The Game of Soap Opera Mayhem
1st electronic ed by Ferry Bazelmans (2002) Blacklight Publishing
1st print ed by Ferry Bazelmans, W. Jason Peck, Aldo Ghiozzi (2003) Wingnut Games
A storytelling mini-RPG which is played for 60 minutes at a time. Each player takes a character in a soap opera, with five words as traits. There is no GM, but instead there are rules for entering a Scene, adding sentences, and so forth by spending Plot Tokens. Originally published electronically as a 31-page PDF file, then in print as a 24-page illustrated booklet.
Society of Dreamers
1st ed by Matthijs Holter (2010) self-published
A historical fantasy RPG set somewhere in Europe sometime in the 1800s, where player characters are members of a society searching for creatures called mnemosites ("dream eaters"). During a single session, players play out the entire lives of their characters, and the fate of their society. Play is largely freeform, using a set of scribbled notes and a board containing nine fields that an object is moved between. Character creation works by each player writing 8 notes: two each of gender, age, nationality and profession. These are collected into four heaps, from which each player draws one. After that, two scenes for each player are played, dealing with childhood and adolescence to complete the characters. During regular play, players take turns setting new scenes within bounds given by the game board and accompanying notes. The book is self-published through Lulu.com, and detailed on the official website.
SOL
1st ed by Keith W. Sears (1994) Heraldic
A universal RPG system which uses logarithmic scales ("levels" similar to DC Heroes AP's) and a simple stat + d10 versus difficulty for resolution. Character creation is point-bought skills, powers, advantages, and disadvantages.
Solar System
1st ed by Clinton R. Nixon (2008) Arkenstone Publishing
An universal system based on the rules from the fantasy RPG, The Shadow of Yesterday.
Solipsist: A Role-Playing Game About Changing Reality
1st ed by David Donachie (2008) Solipsist RPGs BoxNinja
A modern fantasy role-playing game where the player characters are special people who can change reality, called "solipsists". They fight Shadows, creatures who are trying to un-make all of reality. It uses a narrative system where players may declare scenes and background facts, but sometimes at the risk of causing damaging "tears" in reality. Player characters are defined by a Vision, a list of Obsessions, and a list of Limitations.
A Song of Ice and Fire Roleplaying
1st ed by Robert J. Schwalb (2009) Green Ronin Publishing
A Game of Thrones ed (2012)
A fantasy RPG set in the world of George R.R. Martin's novel series of the same name, set in the region of Westeros in a time shortly before the chaotic events of the series. The player characters are all members of a minor noble house or their retainers. The group first creates stats and features of the house itself, then create characters as members of that house. The rules are the "Chronicle System". Resolution is by rolling a number of d6s equal to attribute plus skill, then keeping and totaling a number of dice equal to attribute.
Sons of Liberty
1st ed by Joshua BishopRoby (2008) Kallisti Press
A game set in a tongue-in-cheek parallel history where the American Revolutionary War is being fought with clockwork powered armor, ornithopters, and two-fisted brawling as well as muskets. It uses a GMless system using playing cards. Each game begins at the secret Grand Lodge of the Americas, where the characters recieve a coded message about British movements. The players draw 5 cards and read their meaning on a series of table as an adventure starter. They then pick from pregenerated characters of Founding Fathers such as George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, and Benjamin Franklin - with one player taking the Tories. Each turn, a player lays down cards from their hand and begins to narrate a scene - limited by the card suit that specifies type of action. Other players can play cards to add to or alter that narrative.
Soothsayer
1st ed by "sjb" (1997) Critical Mass
A universal RPG system intended for "futuristic high fantasy", including a psionics system but no background with the basic game. The system uses d10 vs (difficulty minus skill), modified by an attribute bonus from a table. Character creation uses random-roll or point-based attributes, including "caste" of Status, Education, and Experience which determine skill slots.
Sorcerer RPG
1st Electronic ed by Ron Edwards (1998) Adept Press
1st Print ed (2001)
A modern-day magic RPG. The first edition was published electronically (a free 16-page "Apprentice" version is available), while a printed version was later released. The PCs are secret sorcerers who accomplish magic solely by calling and binding demons. Each demon has its own special abilities and goals. It may be bound into a ring or weapon, appear humanlike, or be a parasite to a host. The system is minimalist, using a highest-roll dice pool.
S.O.R.D.: System of Role Development
1st ed by Scott J. Compton (1998) Fractal Dimensions
A universal RPG using a skill-based system, with some skill restrictions from chosen Culture and Profession. Resolution is by rolling d20 under skill. Combat uses a d20 somewhat differently (to-hit depends on attribute, while damage is modified by skill).
Sovereign Stone
1st ed by Don Perrin, Lester Smith (1999) Sovereign Press
2nd ed (2000)
A fantasy-genre game envisioned by Larry Elmore, set in his fantasy world Loerem. It uses a fairly simple skill-based system, rolling an Attribute die (d4 thru d10) plus a Skill die versus difficulty.
So Ya Wanna Be A Rock N' Roll Star!
1st ed by Bill Barton (1991) Bill Barton Games
A humorous look at the music industry. Players get to create rock n' roll musicians, join a band, and work their way through wacky encounters. Features include a band name generator, NPC generation for groupies and others, and several scenarios.
Space:1889
1st ed by Frank Chadwick (1988) GDW
A Victorian sci-fi game, in an alternate history where "ether flyers" allows steam-powered spaceships to colonize desert-like Mars and jungle-laden Venus. An excellent background which draws on a number of Victorian ideals.
Spacefarers: Rules for Science Fiction Skirmish Adventures
1st ed by Bryan Ansell, Richard Halliwell, Tony Ackland, Richard Priestly (1981) Games Workshop
A sci-fi miniatures combat system, a predecessor of the Warhammer 40K miniature line.
Space Infantry
1st ed by Daniel Douglas Hutto, Roger Allen Esnard (1982) D&R Game Design
A spacefaring military sci-fi RPG, where PC's are space cadets in military service.
Space Master
1st ed by Terry Amthor, Kevin Barrett (1986) Iron Crown Enterprises
2nd ed (1988)
A generic sci-fi RPG system, using a variant of the Rolemaster system.
SpaceNinjaCyberCrisis XDO
1st ed by Matt Johnston, John Fleming, Colin Johnston, Eamon Watters, Mark Lamki, Lesley McLarnon (1997) Crucible
A sci-fi pocket RPG set in a crime-ridden world filled with anime and manga conventions, including giant robot warriors, demons, and two alien races. It also includes background for the city of San Metro in 2019, site of an interstellar and interdimensional war. It uses a simple skill-based system that includes cyberware and mecha.
Space Opera
1st ed by Ed Simbalist, A. Mark Ratner, Phil McGregor (1980) FGU
A semi-generic sci-fi game, intended to simulate several space opera subgenres (i.e. Star Wars, Star Trek, Lensmen, etc.) The system is fairly complex and detailed, but there is a lot of coverage of elements like psionics, worlds, equipment, starships, etc.
Space Quest
1st ed by Paul Hume, George Nyhen (1977) Tyr Gamemakers Ltd
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG. It uses a d30-based system with class-based character creation and level-based advancement. The basic system includes six classes (spacers, warriors, mutates/psionics, technics, or biotechs) and three races. The basic system also includes random star system generation, though based on the erroneous Bode's Law.
SPACERS
1st ed by Tom K. Loney (2007) Peryton Publishing
A retro sci-fi game using the minimalist TAG (Tom's Adventure Gaming) system. Resolution uses 2d6 against a target number of difficulty minus attribute. Character creation includes races of human or android; along with character classes including Spacer, FreeFall Brawler, Scientist, and Psychic. There are eight attributes, each determined by 4d6 (Strength, Constitution, Speed, Dexterity, Intelligence, Luck, Will, and Charisma).
Spaceship Zero: The Sci-Fi Serial Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Toren Atkinson, Warren Banks (2002) Green Ronin Publishing
A 50's style swashbuckling space adventure RPG, based on the cult TV series and the movie from Titan Entertainment. A group of brave test pilots take the world's first "Better-Than-Light" drive ship for a spin around the galaxy. Everything that can go wrong does, leaving the crew stranded in a twisted mirror universe, low on supplies and beset by dangerous aliens who seek their technological secrets. It uses a percentile skill-based system: roll under skill on 1d100, where the roll itself indicates degree of success. In addition, players have a limited number of "zero dice" which can be used to alter rolls. Character creation is limited-point based, using 15 archetypes for ship roles. The archetype limits attributes and skills, which are point-bought, and provides a Specialty Perk: a cinematic powers usable once per session.
Spacetime
1st ed by Greg Porter (1988) BTRC
A cyberpunk RPG, set in a dark urban future ruled by interplanetary corporations. It uses a variant of the Timelords system.
Spawn of Fashan
1st ed by Kirby Lee Davis (1981) Games of Fashan
A small-press fantasy-genre RPG, generally held to be a parody of other RPGs in its pointless complexity and bizarre tables. It is set in the land of "Boosboodle", inhabited by monsters like "makl", "foklom", "finikor", and "rolmtrokl". Over 20 monster names are listed, but only 7 are described. Character creation involves over 50 statistics and numerous randomly-rolled ads and disads.
Sphinx
1st ed by John Stowe (1984) Seventh Scarab
A British historical/fantasy RPG set in ancient Egypt. The system is class-based, including over 50 classes. It also includes a large-scale combat system, and rules for reincarnation and dreaming.
Spirit of the Century
1st ed by Rob Donaghue, Fred Hicks, Leonard Balsera (2006) Evil Hat Productions
A game about 1920s pulp genre heroes. It is set just after the Great War, and the PCs are members of the "Century Club" of adventurers whose elder members are dying off. It uses a variant of the FATE system (Fantastic Adventures in Tabletop Entertainment), known as FATE 3.0. FATE is itself a free variant of the Fudge system, available for download. It adds Aspects and other narrative mechanics to the rules.
Splicers
1st ed by Carmen Bellaire (2004) Palladium Books
A post-apocalyptic science fiction game, set on a world (which may or may not be Earth) where an artificial intelligence named "NEXUS" went rogue and infected humanity with a nanobot plague that turns all metal into killing machines. Humanity survived by developing biotechnology, in particular armored "biosuits" with military capabilities. It uses a variant of the Palladium FRPG system, which is level and class based, with percentile attributes and skills. The basic game covers different classes describing different variants of biosuits and their pilots. Classes include Archangels (with flying biosuits), Biotics (criminals rebuilt as biotech cyborgs), Dreadguard (chivalrous knights), Outriders (bonded to a biotech mount), Packmasters (bonded to a pack of augmented dogs), Roughnecks (infantry troops), Saints (self-sacrificing healers), Scarecrows (augmented but chemically-addicted), Skinjobs (humans with augmented stealth via alien skins), and Technojackers (immune to the nanobot plague due to helpful nanites).
Spookshow
1st ed by Aaron Rosenberg (1998) Clockworks Games
A supernatural espionage RPG, where ghosts are recruited to work as spies! It uses a simple stat+die vs difficulty system, with a twist that sometimes you use d10s for mental/spiritual/ghosty powers and d6s for other rolls. There are also various dangers of "freezing up" one side of your ability (resisted by a "Control Check") -- rolling a 1, say, or perhaps you face the thing that killed you.
Spycraft
1st ed by Patrick Kapera, Kevin Wilson, Scott Gearin (2002) Alderac Entertainment Group
2.0 ed by Alex Flagg, Patrick Kapera, Scott Gearin (2007) Mongoose Publishing
A modern-day superspy game in the genre of James Bond and Mission: Impossible. The rules are a variant of the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. The core book include complete, self-contained skill and feat listings as well as combat rules, but rely on core rules from standalone D20 System games for a few essentials of character creation and advancement.
Squirrel Attack!
1st ed by William Corrie III (2005) HinterWelt Enterprises
A humorous RPG about squirrels from the magical kingdom of Nuttopia who are on a secret mission to raid the Mortal World in search of nuts ("Operation: Get Mr. Jones' Nuts"). It uses the "Iridium Lite" system, which is a simplified version of the "Iridium" system that originally appeared in Tales of Gaea. Resolution is roll under skill + aptitude + stat on 1d20. Character creation is limited point-based: distribute 60 points to statistics; choose career, skills, and powers. The basic game includes maps of of Nuttopia, Mr. Jones' grove, house and buildings; plus six pre-generated characters with individual goals.
Stalker - The SciFi Roleplaying Game
1st Finnish ed by Ville Vuorela (2008) Burger Games
1st English ed by Ville Vuorela (2012) Burger Games
A post-apocalyptic sci-fi RPG, based on the novel Roadside Picnic by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky. Alien visitation has created numerous Zones dozens of kilometers across, where physical reality has changed and various artifacts are scattered. Teams of Stalkers travel into the Zones to recover artifacts, but they risk being destroyed by anomalies within. It uses a diceless system called the FLOW system. Resolution works by the GM assigning Idea and Roleplay values to the action based on player's description. Both values get a +1 if the character has an applicable ability. The two values are then multiplied, and if the product is higher than the target number, the task succeeds.
Star Ace
1st ed by Mark Acres, Gali Sanchez (1984) Pacesetter
A space opera RPG where humans, bear-men, and cat-men are allied against an oppressive Empire of pig-men and lizard-men. It uses a variant of the Chill rules.
Starblazer Adventures
1st ed by Chris Birch (2008) Cubicle 7 Entertainment Limited
A science fiction game based on the British sci-fi comic series by DC Thompson, published in the 1970's thru early 1990's. It uses a variant of the FATE system (Fantastic Adventures in Tabletop Entertainment) from Spirit of the Century.
Starchildren: Velvet Generation
1st ed by Richard Ranallo, Scott Leaton (2002) XIG Games
A sci-fi RPG set in 2073, in a future where the Ministries of Culture have repressed rock & roll and other possibly violent influences following a catastrophic world world. However, aliens ("Starchildren") arrive in 2071, inspired by the radio transmissions of the prior century. The PCs are humans and starchildren who have gathered as underground rock & roll bands who oppose the ministries. It uses a system based on playing cards. The eight attributes and related skills each have a card rank and an associated suit. The player has a hand of five cards where only the suit played matters. Resolution test is made by comparing a random draw versus the attribute or skill, modified based on the suit of the card played from the player's hand. Character creation is limited point-based, with advantages and disadvantages.
Starcluster Role-Playing Game
1st ed by clash bowley (2002) Flying Mice LLC
A space opera RPG originally published as an electronic download, set in a cluster of stars several hundred years after refugees from Earth first settled there. The first colonists arrived in huge slower-than-light multi-generation spaceships which spread over dozens out of hundreds of worlds. Since arriving, some have discovered anti-gravity and FTL travel, contacted several alien races, and become one of the dominant races. The original edition uses a percentile skill-based system, while later editions use a dice pool system called the StarPool system. In StarPool, resolution is by rolling d20s equal to skill rating, where every die under attribute is counted as a success. Character creation has random-roll attributes and a lifepath mechanic for each year over 10, which generates skills, metaskills, and attribute improvements.
Starfaring
1st ed by Ken St. Andre (1976) Flying Buffalo
A humorous spacefaring sci-fi RPG -- the first ever published. The is a 56-page booklet (8 1/2" by 11"), plastic spiral bound with a cartoon illustration of a woman with a headband and blaster with stars and a spaceship in the background. The interior is also copiously illustrated with cartoons by E. Hogan. While one participant is the "Galaxy Master" (GM), the other players are "Ship Masters" (SMs). Each player designs and plays one starship, including the entire crew. There are three basic scenarios: (1) basic exploration through a Star Gate; (2) race to find a suitable colony world; (3) fighting galactic foes. Ships are constructed by buying features within a monetary budget. Characters are created by random-roll attributes, and may be either human or robot. Humans have (3d6)x10 for Mentality, 3d6 for Psi, 1d6 for Psi Use, 1d6 for Psi Recovery, 3d6 for Physique, and 3d6 for Health. Robots have (3d6)x50 for Mentality, and playing card draw to determine Charge and Efficiency (both rated 0.00 to 1.00). It includes rules for ship combat and space hazards, but no rules for personal combat or action.
Starfleet Voyages
1st ed by Michael Scott (1982) Terra Games
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, playing members of a space navy similar to Star Trek. The rulebook includes "Landing Party" rules for personal-level roleplaying and "Starflight" rules for ship navigation and combat.
Star Frontiers
1st ed by "TSR Staff" (1982) TSR
2nd ed by Lawrence Schick, David Cook (1983)
A space-opera game, set in an original universe where four allied races (humans, amorphous Dralasite, simian Yazirians, and insectoid Vrusk) are threatened by the evil worm-like Sathar. It uses a percentile skill-based system, where chance is listed separately for each skill (i.e. setting charges is 30%+10*skill, while removing security locks is 70%+10*skill). Character creation is purely random-roll attributes, however: starting characters have no skills. The second edition retitled the original boxed set "Alpha Dawn" and added a "Knight Hawks" boxed set with starship construction and combat rules.
Star Hero
1st ed by Paula Woods, Sam Bowne (1989) Hero Games
A generic sci-fi game using the 3rd edition Champions system. The game included the Powers meta-system, which is used for alien biology, technological devices, and . It also includes a hex-based starship combat system. There is only a brief background (describing 10 interstellar societies in 18 pages).
Starleader: Assault
1st ed by Howard Thompson (1982) Metagaming
A space-opera variant of the Fantasy Trip, though only the first module (combat) was published. It was set in the 30th century of the Space Era (SE), depicting humanic expansion to the stars. The boxed set included rules, map, and 42 counters.
Star Patrol
Space Patrol ed by Michael Scott Kurtick, Rockland Russo (1977) Gamescience
1st ed (1980)
2nd ed (1982)
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, originally a 32-page mini-game called "Space Patrol". The rules use attributes similar to D&D, with a hybrid system with class-like professions as well as 25 skills. Professions include soldier, engineer, scientist, astronaut, trader, rogue, and spy/diplomat. It also includes rules for 32 alien races, psionics, robots, and starships.
StaRPlay
1st ed by Phillip McGregor (1999) Phalanx Games Designs
A brief universal RPG, released as a 103-page download in PDF format. There are two sourcebooks for the "Armageddon" setting, in which 20th-21st century military units are thrown 25000 years into the future where there are various fantasy-like creatures and ultra-tech. The system uses rolling 2d6 under skill/stat. There are attributes (including Luck) and a semi-complex tree of skills.
Star Riders
1st ed by Hans Guevin (1993) Ianus Publications
A "wild space opera comedy" RPG, a sequel to R Talsorian's Teenagers from Outer Space game with compatible rules.
Star Rovers
1st ed by Stocken, Hoffman, Hoffman, Hargrave, Huey, Lortz (1981) Archive Miniatures and Game Systems
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, with a fairly detailed system covering possibilities from zero-gee combat to diseases and their effects. It was released with a set of sci-fi miniature figures. Action resolution is based on rolling sets of d6's with sixes read as zeroes (resulting in a range from 0 to 5). Reviewed in Space Gamer #44.
Starships and Spacemen
1st ed by Leonard H. Kanterman (1978) FGU
A serious-toned military space opera RPG, taglined "Carry Out Missions in the Final Frontier". It focuses on the "Space Fleet Service". The system covers aliens, space combat, and psionic abilities.
Starship Troopers
1st ed by August Hahn (2005) Mongoose Publishing
A military sci-fi RPG based on the nineties computer-animated TV series ("Roughnecks Chronicles"), the 1997 Paul Verhoeven film, and the 1959 Robert A. Heinlein novel. The PCs are troopers in powered armor who are engaged in war with bug-like aliens. This is a standalone game which uses a variant of the D20 System developed for 3rd edition Dungeons & Dragons. Characters are almost all of the "Trooper" class, but may add cross-training classes such as neo-dog handler, marauder driver, and medic. There is also a Special Service Agent class with its own psionics system. There are a number of combat system modifications, including that characters begin with hit points equal to his Constitution and gain exactly three hit points per level.
StarSIEGE: Event Horizon
1st ed by Josh Chewning (2008) Troll Lord Games
A generic sci-fi RPG using a variant of the SIEGE Engine system from the fantasy RPG Castles & Crusades. Resolution is still by rolling 1d20 with a target number of either 12 or 18 depending on whether the task is within the character's skill bundle. In this variant, character creation does not use classes - only attributes, species, skill bundles, and specialties. There are also a generic set of build rules for "Trappings" - which can be anything from guns to diseases to planets. Combat is expanded to allow fights between general entities such as vehicles, starships, or even planets.
Stars Without Number
1st ed by Kevin Crawford (2010) Sine Nomine Publishing
A science fiction RPG set in the year 3200, six centuries after a metadimensional pulse killed all psychics and cut off interstellar travel. Humanity is scattered and just beginning to recover from centuries of isolation. It uses a variant of the early ("old school") Dungeons & Dragons. system, inspired by the "Old School Renaissance" design movement. Character creation is by rolling 3d6 for the six attributes and choosing a class, along with a background package, training package, and homeworld. The three classes are: Warriors, Experts, and Psychics. Skill resolution is by rolling 2d6 + skill + attribute modifier vs. difficulty number. Combat rolls are 1d20 + target's Armor Class + attacker's Combat skill, attribute modifier, and attack bonus. A result of 20 or more is a hit. The core rules include starships and a starship combat system, using the same hit roll and rules for shifting metadimensional phase.
Star Thugs
1st ed by Mark Argyle (2004) GhazPORK Industrial
A tongue-in-cheek sci-fi RPG focused on starship combat, set in "a dangerously jaded galaxy filled with bold adventure and relentless cynicism." Each player creates a complete ship, captain, and crew. Character creation involves selecting four attributes (Engineering, Piloting, Mojo and Thuggery); plus simple skill selection. It has an involved starship combat system, where any number of actions can be taken in a turn, but most systems become "BENT" after one use and cannot be used again that turn. Action resolution is generally 1d12 plus modifiers vs difficulty. For some rolls, if you roll under your attribute you can roll again and add to the total.
Star Trek
1st ed by Christian Moore, Ross Isaacs, Kenneth Hite, Steve Long (2002) Decipher
A science-fiction game based on the televisions series, closely related to the previous Star Trek effort from Last Unicorn Games. It is published in a Player's Guide and Narrator's Guide. It uses the "CODA" system, which is based on attribute + skill + 2d6 vs difficulty. Character creation uses templates and "overlays" for species and profession, along with limited point-based features such as advantages and disadvantages.
Star Trek
1st ed by Guy W. McLimore, Greg Poehlein, David Tepool (1982) FASA
2nd ed by Wm John Wheeler (1983)
An early sci-fi game based on the original TV series. This uses a basic percentile skill-based system. Character creation is random-roll attributes with skill picks (of random adds) based on career path. The combat system uses a complex action point system. It includes world generation but no starship combat.
Star Trek: Adventure Gaming in the Final Frontier
1st ed by Michael Scott (1978) Heritage Models
An early sci-fi game based on the original TV series. It was the first official Star Trek RPG, and produced in conjunction with the official figure line. The core rulbook is staple-bound with only a large purple gas giant and space background on the cover, and no interior illustrations. The rules are split into a "Basic Game" using pre-generated characters from the series, and an "Advanced Game" with full character creation and additional combat rules like random initiative. Characters have six attributes (Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Charisma, Luck, and Mentality) generated by 3d6 rolls modified by race. There is a "Hand-to-Hand Class" bonus, but no other skills and no experience rules. Melee combat is resolved in a single damage step. The attacker rolls 1d6-6d6 (depending on weapon) plus Strength, Dexterity, and Hand-to-Hand Class modifiers. The defender subtracts 1d6 plus Luck and Hand-to-Hand Class modifiers from this total to determine damage. Ranged combat requires a 1d6 roll under a hit number which depends on range and the attacker's Dexterity. The rules include sheets for bridge crew including Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Uhura, Checkov, Sulu, Chapel, and Scott as well as M'res and Arex from the Star Trek animated series. The advanced rules include descriptions of several alien races including Larry Niven's Kzin, an extensive equipment list, tables for randomly-generated aliens, and two introductory scenarios. There are no starship rules, however, and both scenarios are essentially dungeon crawls complete with monsters, radioactive rocks, and traps.
Star Trek Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Christian Moore, Ross Isaacs, Kenneth Hite, Steve Long (1999) Last Unicorn
The companion game to Star Trek:TNG which covers the original TV series. It uses the same system, with altered background and character templates.
Star Trek: The Next Generation Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Christian Moore, Ross Isaacs, Kenneth Hite, Steve Long (1998) Last Unicorn
A sci-fi game based on the TV series (no relation to the FASA game). It uses a "best roll" dice pool system (the "Icon" system), rolling a number of d6's equal to attribute (1-6), keeping the best and adding skill (1-6) vs difficulty.
Star Wars
1st ed by Greg Costikyan, Greg Gorden, Bill Slavicsek (1987) West End Games
2nd ed by Bill Smith (1992)
Revised and Expanded ed by Bill Smith, Peter Schweighofer, George R. Strayton, Paul Sudlow, Eric S. Trautman, Greg Farshtey (1996)
A sci-fi game set in the universe of the movie series by George Lucas. The later editions are nominally set after the film trilogy, when the New Republic has emerged. However, play during the original film period are also supported. This uses the simple "D6" system: roll d6's equal to attribute + skill and compare total vs difficulty. Character creation is by picking a pre-gen template or limited point-buy.
Star Wars Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Bill Slavisceck, Andy Collins, JD Wiker (2000) Wizards of the Coast
Saga ed by Owen K.C. Stephens, Rodney Thompson (2007) Wizards of the Coast
A sci-fi game set in the universe of the movie series by George Lucas. It uses a variant of the D20 System developed for 3rd edition Dungeons & Dragons. Character creation is based on random-roll attributes along with races and classes as in the original system. However, characters have a Defense Bonus (which adds to Armor Class) as well as a Reputation score which depend on class and level. The damage system has a separate pool of Wound Points (always equal to Constitution) and Vitality Points (which are gained in dice per level). Critical hits and other special damage subtract directly from WP, but otherwise damage comes out of VP first. It also includes a Force Point system, where all characters have Force Points which can be spent for a bonus to die rolls. You gain a force point with each level or from performing an act of dramatic heroism.
Star Wars
Edge of the Empire ed by Jay Little, Chris Gerber, Sam Stewart (2013) Fantasy Flight Games
Age of Rebellion ed (2014) Fantasy Flight Games
A sci-fi game set in the universe of the movie series by George Lucas. It uses a dice pool system based on custom dice, positive and negative. Positive dice (D6, D8, or D12) come from skill, proficiency, and bonuses - and have symbols for success, advantage, and triumph. Negative dice (D6, D8, or D12) come from difficulty and have symbols for failure, threat, and despair. A roll is a success if success results outnumber failure results - but there can be advantages gained even on a failure, and threats with success. Character creation is based on race and career. There are eight races (Human, Wookie, Droid, Trandoshian, Twi'lek, Bothan, Gand and Rodian) and six careers (Bounty Hunter, Colonist, Explorer, Hired Gun, Smuggler, and Technician) - each with three possible specializations.
Star Wreck Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Mike Pohjola (2006) Energia Productions
A humorous science fiction game, adapted from the Finnish Star Trek parody film of the same name. The PCs are members of the P-republic, an advanced society of "radical godless commie feminist liberal pinkos". It uses a simple system where you roll 2d6 and try to get higher than your Inability score -- which is one of Stupidity, Obliviousness, Clumsiness, Repulsiveness, and Weakness. There are four classes: Incompetent Idiot, Annoying Nerd, Psychotic Loud-Mouth, and Frustrated Grouch. Your class grants you from 0 to 2 special talents.
Steal Away Jordan
1st ed by Julia B. Ellingboe (2007) Stone Baby Games
A historical tabletop RPG about characters who are slaves in the 19th century U.S. -- inspired by slave narratives like Margaret Walker's Jubilee, Toni Morrison's Beloved, and Octavia Butler's Kindred. It uses a d6 dice pool system where a character's primary stat is a general pool, called Worth, that is rated based on the character's market value. There is also a Death die (d6) rolled during any violent conflicts, where a result of 1 means that the character dies.
STOCS Lite
1st ed by Eoin Connolly, Rob Brennan, Eric Nolan (1994) Wasteland
A universal RPG system. It uses random-roll attributes (advising GM latitude in allowing rerolls) and point-bought skills (number of skill points based on attributes: INT+EDU+10). Action resolution is basic roll d20 under skill: difficulty is a +- modifier, but time spent is a multiplier to skill (x1/2 or x2). Success is normal or critical. The combat system is simple and geared towards realism, and features "panic" rules.
Stormbringer
1st ed by Ken St. Andre, Steve Perrin (1981) Chaosium
2nd ed (1985) Chaosium
3rd ed (1987)
4th ed by Ken St. Andre, Steve Perrin, John B. Monroe (1990)
5th ed (2001)
A dark fantasy role-playing game set in the world of Michael Moorcock's Young Kingdoms series. It uses a variant of the Basic Roleplaying system. The Elric! game is really another edition of this game between 4th and 5th editions.
Storyboard
1st ed by Matthew Gaston (1996) Magus Creative Games
A simple universal mini-system. Characters have 15 to 20 freeform word traits such as "Sorceror" and "Quick". For action resolution, each trait that applies to the action adds one die to the dice pool. You roll that number of d10, and each die that is greater than the task difficulty is one success.
Story Cards
1st ed by Carl Klutzke (2008) Dogtown Games
A universal RPG that uses specialized deck of cards inspired by astronomical constellations. There are 60 cards, numbered 1 through 12 in five suits (Strength, Intellect, Dexterity, Will, and Essence). The rules use a tarot-like reading to prompt ideas for characters and adventures. Besides the random reading, character stats are open point-based, dividing 8, 10, 12, or 20 points (based on the chosen power level) among the 4 attributes as well as skills and powers. Resolution is by drawing a number of cards from the deck equal to appropriate attribute, where each card drawn that is of the Essence suit or the suit of the attribute used is a success. Skill adds a number of automatic successes equal to skill level.
Story Engine
1st ed by Christian Aldridge (1999) Hubris
A universal RPG system, which is a dice pool system which has no numerical stats. Instead, the size of the pool depends on the number of textual "descriptors" (like "strong") the character has that apply. Success is determined by the number of odd numbers rolls ("Odds") vs the difficulty.
Strands of Fate
1st ed by Mike McConnell (2010) Void Stars Games
A universal RPG using a variant of the FATE system (Fantastic Adventures in Tabletop Entertainment) from Spirit of the Century.
Strange Frontiers
1st ed by Mark Hanson (1999) New World Games
A futuristic "Wild West" RPG. It is set in the year 2119 on a mystically-charged planet called Tarrath on the other side of the black hole Cygnus X1. The Earth government has tried to isolate the planet from technology, but their efforts are only partially successful. The system includes 11 races, 13 professions, 83 skills, and 144 spells.
Street Fighter: The Storytelling Game
1st ed by Bill Bridges, Phil Brucato, Brian Campbell, Sean Lang, Mike Tinney, Stephan Wieck (1994) White Wolf
A martial-arts RPG based on the video game, using a variant of the Storyteller system.
StrikeForce: 2136
1st ed by Lee Kamberos (2007) RolePlayersInk
A dark future science fiction RPG, set in the year 2136 where the U.N. and corporations have fostered a society aimed at creating ultimate opponents and warriors through an adversarial system. It uses a percentile skill system where every skill and attribute roll is an opposed roll, where you subtract a percentile roll from modified skill level to determine the effectiveness (EF) of the attempt. The EF is compared to an opposed roll to see if they succeed. This may be modified by a related skill roll ("tweaking") or spending a limited number of luck points. Characters are created by a random-roll class-based system. The player rolls for the race of the character, where the races are different genetically engineered versions of humanity. Primary attributes are then generated with dice rolls based on the race. The player then rolls education level based on a chart, and chooses a profession from 5 options: Special Tactics Officer (STO), Corporate Spy (C-Spy), Nano-Tech, Med-Tech and Psi-Tech. Skills are then bought with points based on education level and profession. There are two types of skills: main skills (worth 5 points per level) and sub-skills, which are multipliers of the main skill total. It also has a personality system where characters have defined "passions" that trigger possible disillusionment with the social order (i.e. "A civilian is about to be killed - do I save them and lose the plans?"). Triggered attitude checks may make the character more disillusioned with the system, making it harder go up ranks and get new technology but granting an experience bonus. Besides the game system book, the core game also has a Tech Manual (covering various equipment) and The Defense Zone Manual (GM's guide).
Stuperpowers
1st ed by Ryan Dunlavey, Steve Ellis, Jamal Igle, Carson Jones, Stew Noack, Lauren Rabinowitz, Fred Van Lente (1997) Unstoppable Productions
2nd ed (1999) Evil Twin Comics
A parody superhero RPG, published as a 32-page comic book (with an abridged rulebook available on the web). Characters are "third-rate heroes" with less than spectacular powers like "Induce Vietnam Flashbacks" (randomly rolled from a list of 48 powers). The basic game mechanic is either toss a coin (you call it, you succeed) or rock-paper-scissors. Damage has 5 levels, but you can gain them back by playing "Truth or Dare". cf. the official website.
Sufficiently Advanced
1st ed by Colin Fredericks (2008) Valent Games
A science fiction RPG where the player characters are agents of the extra-governmental Patent Office, travelling to civilizations throughout the universe to enforces intellectual property rights. It is an open secret that the office run by transcendental artificial intelligences spread throughout time, who are trying to save humanity to ease their loneliness. Character creation is by rating four player-chosen core values (rated 0-10) representing what they believe in, and also Capabilities (rated 1-10) representing the five kinds of technology built into their bodies (rated 1-10): Biotech, Cognitech, Metatech, Nanotech, and Stringtech. Higher ratings in Capabilities result in greater complications and fewer levels in the story-level abilities -- the six Themes: Plot Immunity, Intrigue, Empathy, Magnetism, Comprehension, and Romance. The player spends from 5 to 9 levels among the Themes. The player also spends points up to two times (Biotech plus Cognitech) among professions (i.e. broad skills). Resolution is by multiplying Capability and a 1d10 roll, and also Profession and a 1d10 roll, taking the higher result. A relevant Core Value adds +1 or +2 to the roll. Players may spend one Twist per session to activate a Theme, with an effect depending on the Theme type and level. More Twists can be gained by taking Complications.
Summerland: A role-playing game of desolation and redemption within the Sea of Leaves
1st ed by Greg Saunders (2009) Fire Ruby Designs
Revised and Expanded ed (2010) Fire Ruby Designs
A post-apocalyptic sci-fi RPG in a future where a vast forest has suddenly imposed itself over human civilization (known as "The Event"), and eighty percent of humanity has gone into the forest never to return (known as "The Call"). The player characters are rare "drifters" who can resist the Call and function deep in the forest due to traumatic events that have happened to them. It uses an original system. Character creation is limited point-bought, spending 20 points among the four attributes (Body, Finesse, Mind, Empathy) along with specifying five freeform descriptive "tags". Resolution is by rolling under attribute plus two tags on a number of dice depending on difficulty, from 2d6 (easy) to 5d6 (near impossible). It has additional mechanics for Trauma and Stress, which are stats the both start at 5 but reduce over time when invoked. Trauma lets the character resist the Call but keeps them from being part of normal society. When reduced to zero, the character can reintegrate into society. Stress meaures how close the character is to breaking.
Sun and Storm
1st ed by D. Pilurs (1992) Storm Press
A dark fantasy RPG (with some sci-fi elements), where characters are struggling to survive in a world plagued with monsters. The world was once a techno-magical paradise until a StormWyrm devastated it. The cosmology has that evil Storm dragons fight with good Sun dragons. The PC races are warlike Kehessek, magical Requessek, Hadiborean, and mixed-race individuals. The system is skill-based with profession packages.
Superbabes: The Fem Force RPG
1st ed by Marc Schezzini, Cameron Verkaik (1992) Tri-City Games
A light-hearted superhero RPG in the world of Americomics' Femforce comic, playing well-endowed spandex-clad superheroines. It has a "Bimbo Point" mechanic which lets PC's do anything once (or maybe twice) a game -- even violate the rules, but they accrue debt points when they do. Each game session the GM rolls vs accumulated debt. If the roll is made, a bad subplot (i.e. tabloid story, IRS investigation) happens to the PC and the debt is wiped clean.
The Supercrew
1st ed by Tobias Radesäter (2007) self-published
A English-language RPG (produced in Sweden) in the form of a 28-page comic book. The players play a version of themselves with super powers. Character creation is by rolling three times on a table to determine three abilities. One ability is Rank 3, powerful but only useable once or twice per session. One ability is Rank 2, your primary power. One ability is Rank 1, weak that causes you trouble but earns you hero points if you use it. Resolution is by rolling d6s equal to your ability rank, where each 4, 5 or 6 counts as a success. This is modified by tricks and the Anecdote Bonus. The book is self-published through Lulu.com.
Supergame
1st ed by Jay Hartlove, Aimee Karklyn (1980) DAG Productions
2nd ed by Jay Hartlove, Aimee Hartlove (1982)
A generic superhero RPG, supposedly based on a variant of Superhero 2044. Character creation is point-bought. It had two supplements: a collection of adventures titled "Reactor" and a sourcebook titled "Heroes of Poseidon".
Superhero 2044
1st ed by Donald Saxman (1977) Gamescience
The first superhero RPG. It had rules inspired by D&D, with vague rules for character construction and resolution of superpower useage. Players allocated time management (i.e. hours spent patrolling, etc.) which determined a superhero's overall effectiveness in stopping crime.
Supernatural Role Playing Game
1st ed by Jamie Chambers (2009) Margaret Weis Productions
A modern-day horror RPG adapted from the American television series "Supernatural." It uses a step-die system adapted from the Sovereign Stone and the Serenity RPG.
Super-Sentinels
1st ed (1983) Judges Guild
A superhero RPG system.
Super Squadron
1st ed by Joseph Italiano (1984) Adventure Simulations
An Australian generic superhero RPG, similar to Villians and Vigilantes. The game was a boxed set with two books: the main rulebook (56 pages), and the adventure book with ten introductory scenarios (24 pages). Two supplements were released for it: "The Tome" (with assorted new powers, spells, NPCs, and scenarios) and "Super Science" (with detailed science and technology).
Supervillians
1st ed by Rick Register, R. Vance Buck, Allen D. Eldridge (1982) Task Force Games
A boxed, chit/counter-based tactical combat game set in New York City involving randomized super villains against DAGGER agents, police, and the national guard. The set includes advanced rules for role-playing.
Superworld
2nd ed by Steve Perrin (1983) Chaosium
A superhero RPG. The "first edition" was one of three parts of the World of Wonder universal RPG. It was later expanded and released on its own. It uses a variant of the "Basic Role-playing" percentile system.
Swansong
1st ed by J.J. Prince (2006) Prince of Darkness Games
A broad generic fantasy game that uses Tarot cards for task resolution. Character creation is open point-based, with players spending 100 character points on stats (Physique, Agility, Psyche); Traits (such as Might, Markmanship or Magick); player-defined Skills; Perks (such as guild membership, contacts, etc.); and Talents (including magical one). Action resolution is by drawing a number of cards equal to the appropriate trait, and taking the highest. The GM draws cards either based on task difficulty (1 to 10) or based on NPC stat. Each failure on a player's part adds a grievance, and if grievances are greater than the Essence stat, the character is effectively out of the scene. Flair can be gained by good descriptions, and creates a pool of points which can be spent to hold onto a high card for later use, or move the game to a chosen scene. Also, some Major Arcana have special effects -- such as the Death card allowing the player to kill a faltering NPC, which is otherwise tricky to do.
Swashbuckler
1st ed by Jim Dietz (1998) Jolly Roger
A swashbuckling action RPG. It's system is mixed step-die (d6 to d20 for attribute) plus dice pool (1d6 per skill) vs difficulty. Combat is a special case of 1d20 vs 1d20 based on cross-referencing each opponent's fencing manuever. Character creation is a simple limited-point-buy system.
Swashbucklers of the 7 Skies
1st ed by Chad Underkoffler (2009) Evil Hat Productions
A game of pulp adventure set on an original world, a giant dome of floating cloud-islands divided into seven skies which define the seasons. There are also six major cloud-island kingdoms, whose people travel by skyships (built of floating bluewood), cloudships, and gliders. There are pirates and musket-wielding swashbucklers, of course - as well as magical and religious powers. It uses a variant of the Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) system, called PDQ# ("PDQ Sharp"). It includes the usual 2d6 + stat versus difficulty, as well as a duelling system where opponents divide 3d6 among attack, defense, or other action. This is modified by techniques and spending of Style Dice - which may give an addition die that is not kept (i.e. take thee best 2 out of N dice) or give a flat bonus. Character creation is limited point-based, choosing a number of stats ("Fortes").
Sweet Agatha
1st ed by Kevin Allen Jr. (2008) Kevin Allen Jr Design
A cooperative storytelling game for two players, that incorporates elements of traditional fiction in the form of thirty pages of notes, pictures, and codes regarding the disappearance of the character of Agatha. There are 67 clues included, but the solution to the mystery is decided by the players over the course of ten scenes.
Sweet Dreams: The Storytelling Game of Romance, Espionage and Horror in High School
1st ed by Allan Dotson, David Richards (2005) May Contain Monkeys
A game set in a version of the modern world where due to the Dreaming, everything imaginable is real -- including unicorns, dragons, fairies, ghosts, vampires, werewolves, angels, demons, magic spells and potions, and super-powers. However, most people block it out with adolescence. The PCs are the Chosen -- supernatural students who have re-learned the truth they knew in pre-adolescence.
The Swing
1st ed by Keith Taylor (2003) 93 Games Studio
A modern-day shifting-reality RPG, set in the modern world which is in the process of being transformed by mystical processes keyed to the will of a number of enlightened beings -- including the PCs. The beings are divided into three camps: Naturists, Mechanists, and Neutrals. It uses a dice pool system where you total a number of dice for attribute, add skill, and compare that to the Difficulty of the task. There is an extensive combat system that focuses on realism. Character creation is random-roll attributes and a random-roll lifepath determining occupation and skills.
Swordbearer
1st ed by Arnold Hendrick, Dennis Sustare (1982) Heritage Models
2nd ed (1985) FGU
A fantasy-genre RPG without a specific setting, but emphasizing an authentic medieval feel. Characters did not track money, but rather were allowed any equipment which was allowed to their social status: which ranged from slave at 1 to royalty with 20 or more. The rules are skill-based, with characters choosing broad "spheres" to concentrate in (such as combat, magic, etc.). The magic system is noteworthy in its use of "nodes" which are collected to power spells: either of the 7 elements (fire, metal, crystal, water, wood, wind, light/darkness), or the 4 spiritual humors (vitriolic, phlegmatic, choleric, melancholy).
Swords & Glory
Volume 1, 1st ed ed by M.A.R. Barker (1983) Gamescience
Volume 2, 1st ed ed by M.A.R. Barker (1983) Gamescience
Volume 1, 2nd ed ed by M.A.R. Barker (1987) Different Worlds Publications
This was an incomplete RPG set on the unique alien world called "Tekumel" -- previously the setting of the Empire of the Petal Throne (1975) game. Originally published by Gamescience, Volume 1 was a boxed set with one 136 page book of background information and one full-colour mapsheet with four maps. Volume 2 was a boxed set with 240 page book, two pamphlets (12 and 16 pages), an 8 page character sheet, and two 20-sided dice. It was an incomplete rules system which covered character generation, spells, and basic game mechanics. Volume 3 was never published, though Volume 1 was republished as two smaller books by Different Worlds Publications. There are two other games set in this world that were published later: Gardisayal (1995) and Tekumel (2005).
Swords & Wizardry
1st ed by Matthew J. Finch (2009) Mythmere Games
A close imitation of the original 1974 D&D game by Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson, created using the Wizards of the Coast Open Gaming License.
Swords of the Middle Kingdoms
1st ed by John R. Phythyon, Matt Harrop, Allan T. Grohe, Jr. (1999) Event Horizon Productions
A fantasy martial-arts RPG, based on period-piece Chinese martial-art films, set in a fictitious China during the Manchu occupation. It uses the "Cinemaction" system from Hong Kong Action Theatre!: stat+specialty+d20 vs difficulty. There is also magic based on the I Ching.
Sword's Path: Glory
1st ed by Barry Nakazano, David McKenzie (1983) Leading Edge
A medieval RPG with an extremely detailed and realistic combat system. It uses a time scale of 1/12th of a second, with about 130 hit location charts split into cutting, slashing, and crushing blows.
Systems Failure
1st ed by Bill Coffin (1999) Palladium Books
A satirical post-apocalyptic game set 10 years after the Y2K problem released alien "Bugs" from another dimension. The Bugs can travel at the speed of light through electrical and phone lines, and have all but taken over the world with humans as their slaves. The Bug larvae can live in the human brain and control the body, allowing Bugs to move into the wilderness where no power lines lie. The PCs are survivalist freedom fighters in the wilderness who are fighting back using older technology. It uses a variant of the Palladium FRPG system, which is level and class based, with percentile attributes and skills.
Taiga
1st ed by Ville Vuorela (1998) Burger Games
A English-language post-ecological-apocalypse RPG published in Finland, set in 2039 as civilization is breaking down into anarchy and barbarism due to world-wide famine.
Tales from the Crypt
1st ed by Greg Farshtey, Teenwynn Woodruff (1996) West End Games
A horror RPG set in the world of the TV series. It uses the MasterBook system.
Tales from the Floating Vagabond
1st ed by Lee Garvin, Nick Atlas, John Huff (1992) Avalon Hill
A humorous sci-fi RPG, set in a universe with lots of aliens and hi-tech stuff in the year 4012. "The Floating Vagabond" is the name of a bar in the center of the multiverse, which acts as the home base for intergalactic mercenaries. The system is roll under stat on a step-die based on difficulty (d4 to d100).
Tales of Blades and Heroes
1st ed by Andrea Sfiligoi (2012) Ganesha Games
A simple fantasy RPG rules system based on the miniature rules, "Song of Blades and Heroes". It uses a simple dice pool system, with three attributes (Quality) for Physical, Mental, and Social; and also a general Combat rating. Character creation is open point-based, with 50 points at base. Points can be spent on attributes, but most are spent on Special Rules that function as skills, advantages, and disadvantages. Skill resolution is rolling a number of d6s, with successes based on the appropriate attribute. Combat is 1d6 + bonuses compared to opponent's roll. There is a freeform magic system where each magic-using character has a set of nouns and verbs to form spells from.
Tales of Gaea: Fantasy Role-Playing Game
1st ed by William Corrie III (2003) HinterWelt Enterprises
A fantasy RPG with a percentile skill-based system (the "Iridium System") and an original setting. It is set on the continent of Narheim in the world of Gaea, which is inhabited by humans as well as dwarves, elves, halfings, and gnomes. Society is relatively advanced and enlightened with the use of magic. Character creation is choosing race, random-roll attributes (best of 3d20 for each of eleven attributes), followed by choosing one of seventeen classes which influence skills. It includes a magic system, where all characters may have some magic but specialists have true power.
Tales of Gargentihr
1st ed by Richard Cooper, Alastair Cowan (1995) Sanctuary Games Ltd
2nd ed (1998) Digital Animations Mind Ventures
A swashbuckling fantasy RPG set in a semi-historical alternate world in the year 1585. On Gargentihr, continents drift and magical energy fills the sky. However, it is in an age of exploration (of the New World) and early science similar to our 1700's. PC's are part of a secret society of adventurers ("Clondis") who organize into teams. The system is skill-based, with random-roll attributes, point-bought skills, and a life-path development system. Combat is fairly detailed. cf. the official website.
Talespinner
1st ed by Vincent Diakuw (2004) Thousandpress
An electronically-published role-playing game focusing on storytelling and descriptive skills. Players take turns narrating the outcome of scenes. The flow of action is moderated by a fluctuating pool of dice which the players share.
Talislanta
1st ed by Stephan Michael Sechi (1987) Bard Games
2nd ed (1989)
3rd ed by Stephan Michael Sechi, Jonathan Tweet (1992) Wizards of the Coast
4th ed by John Harper, Stephan Michael Sechi, Adam Sonfield (2000) Shootingiron
4th Reprint ed by John Harper, Stephan Michael Sechi, Adam Sonfield (2000) Morrigan Press
A post-magical-apocalypse fantasy game set on an original fantasy world. Powerful pre-disaster magic can be found, while there is also the menace of barbaric sub-men. There are no elves or dwarves (a tag line for the game). Character creation is by picking from a large set of templates. Action resolution is similar to D&D. cf. the official website.
TAQ
1st ed by Theron, Arvola (1991) Peter's Press
A traditional fantasy RPG, reviewed in White Wolf #28.
A Taste For Murder
1st ed by Graham Walmsley (2010) self-published
A GMless murder-mystery RPG for 4-6 players set in a 1930s country house. It begins with a series of characters playing out events before the murder, establishing motives by keeping track of relationships that become more complex. Halfway through the game, the murder occurs, and the player of the murdered character switches to playing the detective. The true murderer is not determined until the end of the game, when two characters have their motive charts filled and the detective determines which of the two is the real murderer. It uses d6 mechanics called "die circles" that give bonuses when characters act particularly evil, or like victims.
Taste My Steel
1st ed by Don Johnson (1982) Phantasy Network
A historical swashbuckling RPG. The rules are focused on combat (swordplay, firearms, and brawling) but also cover creating scenarios and campaigns.
Technoir
1st ed by Jeremy Keller (2011) Cellar Games
A cyberpunk sci-fi RPG set 20 to 30 years in the future, with general advances in technology but not much detail on the world. It uses a d6 dice pool system where characters have ratings from 1 to 3 in nine Verbs and a number of binary Adjectives used as modifiers. Resolution is by the player rolling "Action Dice" equal to the Verb stat used, with additional "Push Dice" for each applicable positive Adjective or object Tag - comparing the highest die to the target's reaction rating. Rolled Push Dice can be spent for extra success results. Character creation involves picking three Training Programs, where each gives you +1 in three Verbs and 1 choice of Adjective.
Te Deum Pour Un Massacre
1st ed by Jean-Philippe Jaworski (2005) Editions du Matagot
A French-language historical RPG set in 16th century Europe amidst the Wars of Religion. The core set is published as a series of four small paperback books in a cardboard sleeve: a setting book on everyday life (70 pages), a historical background book (194 pages), the main rulebook (146 pages), and a book of scenarios (44 pages). It uses a step-die system where each of six attribute has six levels, with named levels corresponding to D4, D6, D8, D10, D12 and D20. Character creation uses a life path system, starting with picking a birth rank and then templates for your life as a baby, as a child, as a youth and as a teenager. Each stage includes background questions ranging from what your favourite hiding place was as a child to who your first lover was. After adolescence, you pick one of 46 professions. The rules also include detailed combat rules with hit location and precise weapon stats.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Other Strangeness
1st ed by Erick Wujcik (1985) Palladium Books
A superhero RPG based on the parody/action comic, with characters as any of a variety of anthropomorphic mutated animals of various abilities. It uses a variant of the Palladium FRPG system, with limited point-bought character creation (via "bio-energy").
Teenagers From Outer Space
1st ed by Mike Pondsmith (1987) R Talsorian
2nd ed (1989)
3rd ed by Mike Pondsmith, Greg Costikyan (1997)
A Japanese anime comedy RPG, set on Earth as aliens are increasingly drawn in by the wonders of designer jeans, hi-fi stereos, cool cars, and fast food. Characters are high school students competing for popularity and dates while occaisionally saving the world or such. It uses a very simple system based on attribute + skill + 1d6 vs difficulty. Notably, rolling over a certain amount results in a "horrible success" which has unintended consequences. Character creation is rolling 1d6 for each attribute, plus point-bought traits / skills. The combat system has no lethal damage. Instead characters lose "Bonk" from being hit, and they go into a stupor for a while if reduced to zero.
Tekumel: The Empire of the Petal Throne
1st ed by M.A.R. Barker, Joe Saul, Patrick Brady, Edwin Voskamp (2005) Guardians of Order
A non-traditional fantasy game set on a unique alien world called "Tekumel". Set 60,000 years in the future, Tekumel was settled by Earth, but a great disaster threw Tekumel into a pocket dimension where gods and magic existed. The setting has a strong Hindu and Aztec flavor rather than European, and is lavishly detailed. It uses a variant of the Tri-Stat system originally from the Big Eyes, Small Mouth RPG. There are two previously-published games set in this world, though with unrelated rules systems: Empire of the Petal Throne (1975) and Gardisayal (1995).
Tenchi Muyo RPG
1st ed by David L. Pulver, Karen A. McLarney (2000) Guardians of Order
A science fantasy RPG based on the anime series, where a Japanese teenage boy discovers a magic sword and gets mixed up in adventures dealing with various aliens. It uses the Tri-Stat system from Big Eyes, Small Mouth.
Terminus 5
1st ed by Wolf (2000) Scorpion's Nest Tactical Gaming
A post-apocalyptic tabletop RPG and/or wargame, set in a militaristic future where scavenged present-day technology is used. It uses a complex tactical system given in the 422 page Master Rulebook.
Terra Incognita: The NAGS Society Handbook
1st ed by Scott Larson (2001) Circa Games Grey Ghost Games
A Victorian adventure game, using a variant of the FUDGE system. The PC's are members of the National Archeological and Geographic Society, which is a worldwide organization devoted to discovering the supernatural and for the most part keeping it hidden.
The Terran Story
1st ed by Richard Parkinson (2004) Timeless Games
A sci-fi RPG set in the 25th century. Character creation is either random-roll or limited-point-bought attributes; and an occupation package. Action resolution is generally percentile roll under stat, though d6s are also used.
The Terran Trade Authority Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Scott Agnew, Jeff Lilly (2007) Morrigan Press
A sci-fi RPG based on the comic series by Stewart Cowley, started in 1978 with Spacecraft 2000 to 2100 AD, created in cooperation with the author. It uses a variant of the "Omni RPG System" used by other RPGs from Morrigan Press. Action resolution uses skill or attribute minus difficulty + 1d20, interpreting the results on a universal degree of success table.
Terra Primate
1st ed by Patrick Sweeney, David F. Chapman, M. Alexander Jurkat (2002) Eden Studios
A sci-fi RPG in the genre of humans transplanted into a world of intelligent apes, such as the Planet of the Apes movies. There is no specific setting, though there are details on the intelligent apes to fit the genre. It uses a variant of the Unisystem rules, originally from Witchcraft. Action resolution is attribute + skill + 1d10 - difficulty modifiers, rated on a small universal table for degree of success. Character creation is limited point-based.
Terror Network: Counter Terrorism Role Playing Game
1st ed by Brendan Davis, William Butler, Steve Bowden (2010) Bedrock Games
A modern-day counter-terrorism RPG, where the player characters are covert counter-terrorism agents. The game recommends having one full set of characters working on the home front (i.e. FBI or DHS) and one full set of characters involved in foreign operations. It uses a d10 dice pool system (the "Network System"), rolling dice equal to skill and comparing the highest roll to difficulty or opposing skill. Rolls of 10 are open-ended. Character creation is purely skill-based, there are no attributes.
Terror Thirteen
1st ed by Eric A. Kugler (2009) Anansi Games LLC
A horror RPG focused on emulating classic horror stories including those by authors Shelley, Stoker, Hawthorne, Poe, and Stevenson. Resolution is by comparing 3d6 + attribute + skill + backgrounds + bonds versus an opposed roll, where the winner is allowed to narrate the outcome. Backgrounds are traits beyond attribute and skill that are still rated 1-10, and the rating can change as part of an appropriate scene. Bonds are attachments or relationships a character has, also rated numerically. Character creation is either by an open point-buy method or by non-mechanic-based consensus.
Theatrix
1st ed by David Berkman, Travis Eneix, Andrew Finch, Anthony Gallela (1993) Backstage Press
A universal diceless RPG emphasizing drama. Action resolution is largely in the hands of the GM, with flow-charts provided to guide thinking. However, player input is emphasized via "plot points" and "statements" -- using which players can force certain results.
Thieves Guild
1st ed by Richard Meyer, Kerry Lloyd, Michael Watkins (1984) The Game Lords, Ltd.
2nd ed (1984)
A traditional fantasy game which richly detailed thieves as its focus. The system is skill-based, although different skills had different mechanics (combat, thief, and other). Character creation is mixed random-roll attributes and point-bought skills (with a random number of points). It is notable for its detailed subsystems devoted to thief skills (picking locks, etc.)
Thieves' World
1st ed by Lynn Abbey, Gary Astleford, Patrick O'Duffy, Robert J. Schwalb (2005) Green Ronin Publishing
A fantasy RPG based on a multi-author, shared-world series of stories started in 1979 by Robert Lynn Asprin, Gordon Dickson, and Lynn Abbey -- and on the new stories starting with Lynn Abbey's 1999 novel "Sanctuary". It is set in a seedy city called "Sanctuary" filled with murderers, cutthroats, wizards, cultists, and more. The game uses a variant of 3rd edition D&D, aka the D20 System. There was an earlier setting book on Thieves' World in the 1980s published by Chaosium, with stats for several games.
Thirty: A Big Game about a Big Mystery
1st ed by John Wick (2005) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A historical fantasy game where the PCs are among the thirty Templar knights who disappeared in the 14th century after the Pope declared their order to be heretics. In the game, they are carrying a secret treasure and lost in a magical mist, trying to find their way home. It uses a dice pool system, including a special system for "Fraternitas" -- morale and trust in one's fellow knights. Fraternitas dice can either be kept to oneself or put in a pool shared with other PCs.
The Thol-Far RPG
1st ed by Thomas Cook (1998) Thol-Far Adventures
A traditional fantasy RPG set on a slowly crumbling world, composed of thousands of "splinters", each intended as a GM's own personal campaign setting.
A Thousand and One Nights
1st ed by Meguey Baker (2006) Night Sky Games
A storytelling RPG about courtiers in the palace of the Sultan. It uses a rotating GM system where the player of the character telling a story becomes the GM, casting the other players as parts in a story. It uses a simple, abstract dice system where players pose questions about the story and later roll the dice when the question gets answered. Points earned through rolls can be used to progress on three fronts (the only numerical stats of the game): Safety, Ambition, or Freedom.
Thousand Suns
1st ed by Richard Iorio II, James Maliszewski (2008) Rogue Games
A science fiction game. It uses a streamlined system, where action resolution uses 2d12. Character creation is by choosing skill packages based on homeworld type, and a set of career archetype(s).
Throwing Stones
1st ed by Jeff Siadek (1995) Gamesmiths, Inc.
2nd ed (1998) Prism Games
An RPG based on a unique set of collectible dice (aka "stones"), each with a name printed on one face, such as "Barbarian", "Thief", "Monk", "Wizard", "Druid", etc. Character creation is simply by selecting 4 stones (out of over 30), and then choosing equipment and spells. Action resolution is simply by rolling your dice for activities. To increase the odds that certain symbols, you can 'focus' a roll as you act, choosing some of your stones to be re-rolled. However, your opponent then gets to re-roll some of your stones on your next defense roll (making it worse).
Thundering Steel: The Role-Playing/Combat Game Of Warfare In The Near Future
1st ed by Edwin M. Dyer (1991) Minds in One Productions
A role-playing / combat game of warfare in the near future.
Tibet the RPG
1st ed by Brian St.Claire-King (2004) Vajra Enterprises
A modern-era RPG set in Tibet in 1959 as communist Chinese soldiers are on the verge of total conquest and further atrocities against the Tibetans. However, the game includes fantastic elements which fit with the religion and mythology of Tibet. It uses a detailed skill-based system, the "Organic Rule Components" system. Character creation uses classes and limited point buy. In order, the players chooses personality traits and worldviews, splits 80 points between eight attributes, chooses from among 25 classes, and split 100 points among skills (with costs based on class). Action resolution is attribute + skill + 1d20 vs difficulty. It has a detailed combat system with maneuvers and three Health attributes: Blood, Body, and Incapacity.
Time & Temp
Unbound ed by Epidiah Ravachol (2009) Dig a Thousand Holes Publishing
A humorous science fiction RPG set in the modern day, where the player characters are temp workers employed by Browne Chronometrics, a company that fixes temporal anomalies. Since more important people pose a greater risk to the time stream, the company instead sends temps back in time as the least important people imaginable. It uses a mix of dice for resolution. The players choose either Effort or Effect, and the GM determines the other. A table determines the type of die rolled, and the result is put on a grid. Patterns on the grid may give players special time-bending abilities or collect Paradox. The original "Unbound" Edition consists of a standard manila office folder with a welcome letter, an employee handbook, and a number of cardstock handouts that contain the actual rules, as well as a management policy guidebook for the GM.
Time and Time Again
1st ed by H.N. Voss, W.P. Worzel (1984) Timeline Ltd
A realism-oriented time travel game, where the past cannot be changed. Characters go back in time to study the past. The system is realism-based but not easily understood or playable.
Time Drifters
1st ed by Zinny Brown, James K. Shepard (1990) Dimensional Strategies
A "science fiction time travel" RPG, where the basic game is set entirely in the Old West. It uses a universal table of attribute plus modifiers vs percentile roll. Character creation is random-roll attributes, class-based, and random-roll binary skills.
Timelord
1st ed by Ian Marsh, Peter Darvill-Evans (1991) Virgin Books
A licensed sci-fi role-playing game based on the BBC Television series "Doctor Who". It uses a simple skill-based system. Action resolution is attribute plus skill plus the difference between two d6 rolls (giving a number between +0 and +5) vs difficulty. Many tasks are resolved as automatic successes if attribute plus skill exceeds difficulty. The basic game provides a large number of characters adapted from the show, and a system for generating yourself as someone caught up in time travel. However, there is no other character creation system. As the authors point out, the vast power differences of characters on the show means that any point system will fail to represent it.
Timelords
1st ed by Greg Porter (1987) BTRC
A time-travel RPG with two campaign types: In one you play yourself, accidentally thrown from world to world by a strange device. In the other, you play members of a "Time Patrol" who fix kinks in the time lines caused by people like the former as well as intentional trouble-makers. It uses a detailed skill-based system, which uses roll d20 under skill value for success, but modifiers use a multiplicative chart rather than adding/subtracting (i.e. a +4 modifier adds 20% of your skill: changing 5 to 6, 10 to 12, etc.) Each skill has a learning rate determined by one or more attributes. For example, Survival is linked to Intelligence and Perception, while Music is linked to Intelligence, Perception, and Dexterity. Two other notable features: there is a system for rating yourself to determine the player's attributes; and there are no fixed hit points.
Timemaster
1st ed by Mark Acres, Gali Sanchez, Garry Spiegle, Andria Hayday, Smith (1983) Pacesetter
A time-travel RPG, set in 7128 in the time parallel that has advanced the furthest into the metafuture. A Time War devastated humanity, after which those whose ancestors were not wiped out decided to fund "Time Corps" to guard over time -- opposed by the alien Demoreans (from parallel A-217), who intend to take over all of time destroying human history. It uses a variant of the original Chill system.
Timeship
1st ed by Herbie Brennan (1982) Yaquinto
A time-travel RPG. Characters travel back in time using "Personal Energy" which limits how much they can bring with them. The system is simple and loose, to encourage wild action.
Timestream: A Role-playing Game
1st ed by Nathan Paoletta (2005) Hamsterprophet Productions
Timestream is an RPG of cinematic time travel, where the PCs are one of three types: Travelers (who can go forward and back through time, bring others to another time, or view the past or future), Time Manipulators (who can change the time around them, slow things down, speed them up, or even loop time), and Thralls (a mix of the two but they serve a master who can dictate what and when they do things). The characters are connected to each other by a set of Anchors -- important people to the characters -- with each PC having an association to another PC's anchors. It uses narrational conflict mechanics use stat + 2d6 vs (opposing stat or difficulty) + 2d6, where the side which rolls higher determines the outcome. PCs also have two stats for "Time" and "Strain", where Time is spent to manipulate time, and Strain results from failures during such. Strain can eventually pop you back to your own time with bodily damage, or pull you outside of time into Limbo.
Tinker's Damn
1st ed by Andrew LaRoy (1997) Studio Cranium
An multigenre anime-based RPG. The system uses d20 for resolution and d6 for damage and other effects. The main rulebook (103 pages) includes several campaign settings: including police in a modern-day magic world, a space opera campaign, and friendly competition of ace pilots from all sides after WWII.
To Challenge Tomorrow
1st ed by Dave Nalle (1982) Ragnarok Press
2nd ed (1983)
3rd ed (1992)
A universal RPG system, developed from the fantasy RPG Ysgarth. It uses a percentile skill system, with limited point-bought character creation. It has an action point based combat system.
There were numerous background books, some which came with complete TCT mechanics, including: "By the Gods" (mythological), "Challengers" (superhero), "Cyberia" (cyberpunk), "Esperagents" (psychic espionage), and "Triad" (sci-fi).
Tomb Reavers
1st ed by Jim Anuszczyk (2002) Dreaming Merchant Press
A fantasy RPG published in electronic format, set in an original fantasy world on the "Tomb Coast" of the Draemon Empire. The PCs are "Reavers" -- commoners who make their fortune by looting ancient graves protected by powerful guardians. Their code is to only reave tombs after the soul has departed, which happens when all people who knew the person have themselves died. However, it is still illegal and the Reavers must stay clear of the authorities.
Tombstones n' Tumbleweeds
1st ed by Christopher Bracket (2004) Game Werks
A skirmish-level wargame of the Wild West.
Tomorrow Knights
1st ed by Eddy Webb, Cynthia Celeste Miller, Roy Richardson, Rod Whigham (2005) Z-Man Games
An action-heavy sci-fi RPG with cybernetics and power armor mixed with elements of noir and pulp. It is set in a near future where the Universal Corporate Council dominates the world both as a conglomorate and as a megacorp unto itself. Some governments, including the U.S., are opposed to its policies. A limited nuclear exchange has fouled the global climate, warfare is now dominated by power armor troops, and cybernetics are common but still detrimental. Action resolution is by rolling 2d6 + trait vs a difficulty number from 3 (Dead Simple) to 18 (Impossible). Character creation is point-based, buying traits in three broad categories of Body, Mind, and Style.
The Tools of Ignorance
1st ed by clash bowley (2011) Flying Mice LLC
A modern-day baseball RPG where the player characters are players on the same professional team, where the main action is playing out key games of a season. It uses a version of the StarPool system, also used in later editions of the Starcluster RPG. The player rolls a number of d20s equal to skill rating, where every die under attribute rating is a success. Character creation is by picking 1 of 8 Background templates, picking 1 of 7 Professional templates, combining the bonuses from each, rolling to determine handedness, and then applying system-defined Edges and player-defined Traits.
Toon
1st ed by Greg Costikyan, Warren Spector (1984) Steve Jackson Games
Deluxe Ed ed (1991)
A cartoon RPG with simple mechanics (roll under skill on 2d6). It features a lot of pure comedy: characters have "schticks" and receive "plot points" whenever the player makes the GM laugh. When they run out of hit points, characters simply "fall down" - forcing the player to sit out for three minutes (real time) after which he comes back as normal.
Top Secret
1st ed by Merle M. Rasmussen (1980) TSR
Top Secret/SI ed by Douglas Niles (1987)
A modern-day espionage game. The original focused closely on realistic intelligence techniques, while SI incorporated more of pulp action. The systems are almost unrelated.
Torg
1st ed by Greg Gorden (1990) West End Games
Revised and Expanded ed by Jim Ogle (2005) West End Games
A multi-genre game set on Earth being invaded by beings from other dimensions ("cosms"), who have transformed swaths of Earth into "realms" where different laws apply: simulating a traditional genre with a twist. i.e. Egypt is transformed into a pulp action realm, England is transformed into a traditional fantasy realm, etc. The system uses a 1d20 roll (open-ended on 10 or 20) which refers to a universal chart that give "bonus". Action resolution is by comparing bonus + skill vs difficulty. It has an exponential scale of game "values" similar to the MEGS system (from DC Heroes). It also uses a "Drama Deck" of special cards. Each round in combat, a card is turned up to show initiative and special opportunities. Further, each player has a hand of 4 cards which can be played to cause special events.
Tough Justice
1st ed by Ian Warner (2011) Postmortem Studios
A historical RPG where the player characters are legal teams arguing a capital case in England during the years of "The Bloody Code" - from the end of the 17th to the beginning of the 19th Centuries. There are two teams of players: prosecution and defense. Character creation begins by distributing 18 points among six attributes: Authority, Jibe, Charm, Investigation, Violence, and Composure. They then pick two +1 traits, one +2 trait, one merit and one flaw. Player characters then choose teams and create a defendant by a series of random rolls for sex, age, and profession. Play follows with an explicit order of play for the arrest and court case. Actions can include legal maneuvers as well as assaulting an opponent, intimidating witnesses, seducing key figures, and more. Core resolution is by rolling 1d6 and adding stats and special bonuses, compared to a difficulty or opposed roll - called the "Beer and Crisps" system.
Trail of Cthulhu
1st ed by Kenneth Hite (2008) Pelgrane Press
A horror game set in the 1930s, based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft. It uses a version of the "GUMSHOE" system that first appeared in The Esoterrorists. It uses diceless point-spending to resolve investigative skills, and die rolls modified by points for core skills. Character creation is limited point-based, with no attributes and splitting between the 39 investigative skills and the 13 core skills. Characters have two ratings for mental health: Stability (short-term, affected by mundane horrors) and Sanity (long-term, affected by Cthulhu mythos exposure and knowledge).
Trauma
1st [French] ed (1986) "Chroniques d'outre monde" Magazine
2nd [French] ed (1988) Aujourd'hui Communication
1st [English] ed (1992) Darcsyde Productions
A modern RPG about violent crime, originally published in magazine format. The concept is fairly "normal" characters who get thrown into realistic violent situation and must fight for their lives -- softened somewhat that characters who die are returned to life. It uses random-roll attributes and point-bought skills. The combat system is complex, realistic, and (predictably) deadly.
Traveller
1st ed by Marc Miller (1977) GDW
2nd ed by Marc Miller (1981) GDW
MegaTraveller ed (1987)
The New Era ed by Frank Chadwick, Dave Nilsen (1993)
4th ed (1996) Imperium Games
5th ed by Gareth Hanrahan (2008) Mongoose Publishing
The first science fiction RPG, this is set in a large intersteller human empire ("The Imperium"), competing with other human strains (the psionic "Zhodani" and the Earth-derived "Solomani") along with select alien races (the wolf-like Vargr, starfish-like Hivers, and lion-like Aslan). It is a mix of hard sci-fi with isolated space-opera elements: notably psionics.
The mechanics change greatly between editions. The original and second editions (currently being reprinted by author Marc Miller's Far Future Enterprises) have d6-based resolution -- generally roll 2d6 under a target number. Character creation uses a random-roll lifepath generation. The 2nd and 3rd edition converted many of the rules over to the GDW house system. The fifth edition from Mongoose also has separately-published settings including a "Judge Dredd" setting and "Strontium Dogs" setting (based on the British comics series).
Traveller20
1st ed by Martin J. Dougherty, Hunter Gordon (2002) QuikLink Interactive
This is an adaptation of the original Traveller game and universe to the D20 System from third edition D&D. It adapts the rules by adding in two new attributes (Education and Social Standing). It has new core classes and adds in rules for prior history in character generation, similar to the original Traveller rules except that this adds experience to the character, raising it to levels beyond first.
Traveller 2300 (aka 2300 A.D.)
1st ed by Marc Miller, Frank Chadwick, Timothy B. Brown (1986) GDW
2300 A.D. ed by Marc Miller, Frank Chadwick, Lester W. Smith, Timothy B. Brown (1988)
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG, unrelated to the original Traveller in background or system. It is set in 2300 A.D. where Earth has explored the surrounding several hundred worlds, establishing many colonies and meeting a handful of intelligent races (none suitable for PC's). It uses a "task" based system, which is simple but has many options. The basic roll is 1d10 + stat vs difficulty, where the stat varies (skill, attribute, or combinations). Character creation is random-roll attributes and point-bought skills based on career path. It includes rules for spaceship combat and world generation.
Trials of the Grail
1st ed by Jasper McChesney (2004) Primeval Games Press
A themed RPG designed for a variety of settings from ancient history to cyberpunk. There are four constants: the PCs are "knights", their "king" is dying, the "kingdom" around them is dying, and the "grail" is the only thing that can cure the king and, thus, the kingdom. However, each element can be broadly interpreted. One player is the lead character, who begins as a less experienced "knight" but is fated to save the kingdom. It uses a storytelling system, where players can spend narrative points to control outcomes, and can . Characters advance by adding to their Virtue stat by doing good deeds.
Tribe 8
1st ed by Philippe R Boulle, Stephane Brochu, Joshua Mosqueira Asheim (1998) Dream Pod 9
A post-magical-apocalypse RPG, set in a ruined city where matriarchal tribes of humans hold out against demons (the "Z'Bri") who had formerly enslaved them. The seven official tribes were founded by the mythic Fatimas who freed humans from the Z'Bri. Now, however, the seven official tribes are largely corrupt, while the organized outcasts are known as "Tribe 8" who identify with the only male Fatima who died in the war. Magic is available through tapping into the "River of Dreams". It uses the "Silhouette" system, adding a semi-freeform magic system. Character creation is limited point-bought.
Trinity
1st ed by Andrew Bates, Ken Cliffe (1997) White Wolf
A sci-fi superhero game, set in the 22nd century where powerful "Psions" defend the Earth from twisted "Aberrants" (who wield "quanta" rather than "psi"). The Aberrants were expelled from Earth after a massive war, but having made interstellar colonies some are now returning to reclaim it. It uses a variant of the "Storyteller" system. It was formerly called Æon, but the name was changed for legal reasons.
Tri-Stat DX Core System
1st ed by Mark C. MacKinnon (2003) Guardians of Order
A universal rules system, published as a free electronic download and as a low-cost bare-bones rulebook. The rules are a variant of the Tri-Stat system from Silver Age Sentinels, which itself was based on the earlier generic anime system Big Eyes, Small Mouth. This is not specific to anime, and adds in scaling rules to allow for low-power realistic play as well as superheroes. The "DX" refers to using different dice depending on the type of campaign: D4s for low-power play, up to d12s for superheroes. It has three core attributes of Body, Mind, and Soul. Character creation is open point-based.
Triune
1st ed by WJ MacGuffin (2002) Happy Bishop Games
A science fiction RPG where humanity discovered connections to Heaven and Hell while attempting to enter theoretical hyperspace. This began a massive war that ended with a treaty that humanity shall remain neutral and Heaven and Hell will leave humanity alone. The Hegemony of humanity then banned all religion and worship. The player characters are enforcers - para-military agents who investigate angels and devils along with their human allies. However, they might secretly be working for Heaven or Hell, gaining powers and working against their organization. Among other high-tech, the Hegemony has the Weave, an omnipresent network that lets characters pull gear out of thin air or even resurrect themselves upon death. Resolution uses the Effort System, a strategic d10 mechanic where players can decide how much risk and reward with each roll. Players roll 1d10 under attribute to determine success or failure, and then roll from 1d6 to 3d6 for the level of success/failure based on the level of risk chosen. Characters must choose "faiths" for each of three paths: Heaven, Hell, and Hegemony - and have a level rating for each path. Characters can change only by re-allocating attribute points upon death or in getting Faith Points to increase ratings in their paths.
Trollbabe
1st ed by Ron Edwards (2002) Adept Press
A fantasy RPG where the PC's are peculiar creatures: female half-human, half-troll hybrids, known as "trollbabes". It is set on a vaguely defined fantasy world based on Germanic/Norse cultural types. The system is strongly focused on storytelling. The character has only a single stat: roll low to succeed in fights, roll high to succeed in magic. A limited number of re-rolls are allowed per session based on a list of events or relationships.
True20 Adventure Roleplaying
1st Electronic ed by Steve Kenson (2005) Green Ronin Publishing
1st Print ed by Steve Kenson (2006)
A generic fantasy RPG -- a standalone system loosely based on the D20 System used by 3rd edition D&D, adding in rules variations from Mutants & Masterminds. This is a minor variant of the True20 System used by the Blue Rose RPG. There are only three core classes: adept, expert, and warrior -- and variety instead comes from more and more variety of feats. It also includes a wound track damage system based on a 1d20 roll to resist damage, and a new magic system based on feats, where spells cost fatigue. The combat system is modified to remove full-round attacks and attacks of opportunity, and adding some non-attack options.
Truth & Justice
1st ed by Chad Underkoffler (2005) Atomic Sock Monkey Press
A superhero RPG of heroism and mad, beautiful ideas. It uses a variant of the Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) system used in Dead Inside and Monkey, Ninja, Pirate, Robot: the RPG -- streamlined and chromed-up for superheroic flexibility, simplicity, and speed. The core book includes three sample settings: "Second-String Supers" (minor supers in the town of Drakesville); "SuperCorps" (a futuristic corporation); and "Fanfare for the Amplified Man."
Tunnels and Trolls
1st ed by Ken St. Andre (1975) Flying Buffalo
2nd ed (1977)
3rd ed (1979)
4th ed (1980)
5th ed (1984)
5.5th ed (2005)
Unofficial 6th ed (2005) Outlaw Press
7th/30th anniversary ed (2005) Fiery Dragon Flying Buffalo
7.5th ed (2008)
A traditional fantasy game, similar to but simpler than D&D. It uses only six-sided dice, where combat has each side rolls their dice and totals them up. The side with the highest total wins the round. The difference in the rolls is then divided up among the losing side as damage. The 7th edition, published through Fiery Dragon Productions, saw a number of changes, including a new attribute for Wizardry, and determining character level based on the highest of a character's class attributes. The 7.5th edition added a solo adventure, GM adventure, spellbook, and monster compendium to the core book.
TWERPS
1st ed by Manda, Jeff Dee (1988) Reindeer Games
Expanded ed by Lou Zocchi, Niels Erickson (1995) Gamescience
An ultra-simple universal system (short for "The World's Easiest Role-Playing Game"), a parody of Steve Jackson Games' GURPS. It has only one stat: Strength, that is used for all rolls. The roll uses 1d10. It has a surprising number of genre books, including: "Fly-by-Knights", "Kung Fu Dragons", "Rocket Rangers", "Space Cadets", "Superdudes", and "Twek".
Twilight 2000
1st ed by Frank Chadwick (1984) GDW
2nd ed (1990)
A post-nuclear-apocalypse RPG where the characters are soldiers in military units stuck in Europe just after the bombs fell and civilization collapsed. It uses a percentile system: roll under skill*10 ("easy"), skill*5 ("average"), or skill*2.5 ("difficult"). Character creation is random-roll attributes and point-bought skills, with a military career life-path.
Twilight Imperium
1st ed by Todd Nilsen, Jason S. Williams, Darrell Hardy (1999) Fantasy Flight Games
A sci-fi space opera RPG with a focus on politics and intrigue, set in the universe of the board-game "Twilight Imperium" (by Christian T. Petersen). The setting has six great races competing for dominance of the Lazax Imperium, currently re-expanding after being reduced to their homeworlds by the devastating Twilight Wars. The system is a standard percentile system: roll under attribute+skill. Character creation is point-based, with racial and professional packages.
Two-Fisted Tales
1st ed by Matt Stevens (2003) Spectre Press
Revised ed by Matt Stevens (2007) Politically Incorrect Games
A pulp action RPG, in the style of the 30's and 40's pulp tales. Character creation uses 21 character templates, plus customization rules to modify these.
Ultimate Power
1st ed by Blake Mobley (1994) The Game Lords, Ltd.
A fantasy genre RPG.
Umläut: Game Of Metal
1st (electronic) ed by Rich Stokes (2009) Lord of the Pies
1st (print) ed (2010)
A GMless storytelling game for 3-8 players, where players (individually or in pairs) take on the roles of heavy metal bands rather than an individual characters. It is designed for 3-4 hours of play with no prep, using playing cards rather than dice. The system centers on charting their bands' careers as they rehearse, play gigs, fight among themselves and pull crazy publicity stunts. Bands have four stats (Hope, Ego, Fanbase and Cash) and three performance traits (Power, Technique and Stagecraft). It uses a card draw scene resolution mechanic similar to Primetime Adventures and Contenders. Each player takes a turn with a scene, with the players on their left acting as "roadie" (opposition) for the turn. The active player and roadie are dealt a number of cards based on stats and money spent. If the player has more blacks, he succeeds in the scene. Whichever of the two has the highest card gets narration rights.
Underground
1st ed by Ray Winninger (1993) Mayfair
A dark-future superhero RPG, set in 2020 where the superpowered veterans of past wars are abandoned and oppressed by a corrupt U.S. government. The system is based on DC Heroes. Character creation is point-based, spending government money on super-soldier aspects: including genetic surgery (i.e. superpowers), recruitment (i.e. attributes/skills), cash (i.e. equipment), and reconditioning (i.e. curing power induced stress). There are random aspects to superpowers and reconditioning. The system also includes strategic-level mechanics of dealing with the community's problems such as corruption and safety -- which are numerically rated, and can be affected by PCs.
Under My Skin: Who do you love?
1st ed by Emily Care Boss (2008) Black & Green Games
A live-action RPG about romantic relationships for 4 to 8 people, though optional tabletop rules are also included. Play is aimed at taking from 4 to 6 hours. There is a GM (Director), but there are no rules for combat or conflict resolution. Characters have ratings (from 1-3) for intimacy and passion for a number of relationships, possibly including Partner, Friend, Best Friend, and New Flame. Play proceeds by going through a number of scenes according to a general structure, though all details are left up to the players.
Under the Bed
1st ed by Joshua A.C. Newman (2005) The Glyph Press
A horror RPG about childhood perils. The PCs are a child's toys who are trying to defend the child but also competing with each other for the child's affection. Each character has a set of binary traits, and a rating for Favoritism. Conflict resolution is by rolling opposed sets of d8s, adding dice for relevant traits, where the highest roll wins.
Underworld
1st ed by Gareth-Michael Skarka, Laura D. Hanson, T.S. Luikart, Sean Jaffe (2000) Synister Creative
An urban fantasy RPG, along the lines of the television series Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman or the television series Beauty and the Beast by Ron Koslow. It is set in and below the New York City subway system, which were somehow manipulated to run along magical ley lines ("The Radiance"). It uses a rules-light system of coin flipping, built for play in either tabletop or live-action mode. It uses class-based character creation. Character creation involves choosing 1 of 9 Breeds, 1 of 10 Guilds, 3 Defining Traits, 3 Secondary Skills from the Guild list, and choosing starting equipment. The Breeds range from intelligent animals to magical robots to wandering immortals. Guilds are roughly professions.
Undiscovered: The Quest for Adventure
1st ed by Adam D. Theriault, Antonio Da Rosa, Phillip Theriault (2001) Eilfin Publishing
A swords-and-sorcery fantasy RPG, set on the world of "Arkas". This is inhabited by traditional races like humans, elves, and dwarves as well as new races like the Dusters (humans with faint reptilian ancestry), Seraphs (a magical race of neuter beings), Muklags (hairy Bigfoot-like humanoids), and Dracomensc (humanoid dragons). It uses a percentile skill-based system, rolling under skill or attribute on 1d100. Character creation is classless and point-based, with some random adjustments during the process. There are also 150 skills each with five levels. Advancement is level-based.
The Unexplained: Chronicles of the FPI
1st ed by Bradford Younie (2010) Carnivore Games
A modern-day supernatural RPG where the player characters are members of the Foundation for Paranormal Investigation - investigating ghosts, aliens, rare and monstrous creatures, and magicians. It uses a variant of the FUDGE system, extending on the Now Playing system, where the FPI was introduced as a sample campaign.
Universalis
1st ed by Ralph Mazza, Mike Holmes (2002) Ramshead Publishing
A universal storytelling role-playing system. The system has no no game-master. Instead, each player acts as GM to some degree by use of coin-spending mechanics. Players may make Complications to the story which are targetted at other players. Rules resolve who controls using die rolls and the traits of the characters involved.
Universe
1st ed by John H. Butterfield (1981) SPI
2nd ed (1982) SPI / Bantam Books
A sci-fi game around interstellar adventure in a free-market Federation (similar to Traveller), featuring semi-realistic high tech and prevalent psionics, but with little background information. The system is a complex percentile skill system, with the bonus to the roll being the square of the skill. The character creation and combat systems are both particularly involved.
Universe, The Sci-Fi RPG
1st ed by Mark Wilkinson, Michael Wilkinson, William T. Pace (2003) Tower Ravens LLC
A science fiction role-playing game set on an independent world in the midst of several galactic empires, some of which are waring against alien incursions. Characters are skill based. System uses percentile dice and a universal lookup table.
Unknown Armies
1st ed by Greg Stolze, John Tynes (1998) Atlas Games
2nd ed (2002)
A modern-day occult conspiracy RPG with an emphasis on "furious action", based around the concept that the cosmos will soon die and be reborn. The PC's are conspirators within the occult underground, trying to influence what the next world will be like. It uses a percentile skill-based system. Action resolution is by rolling under skill on d100, where "doubles" (11,22,etc.) are special results, and quality of success is measured by the roll itself. Character creation is limited point-based, with freeform skills. There is a mental health system which divides trauma into five categories in which mental stress points can accumulate.
UNSanctioned
1st ed by Greg Poehlein, Paul Arden Lidberg (2000) Nightshift Games
A dark superheroes RPG, set in an alternate 1999 where meta-humans (i.e. superheroes) have been working for the United Nations since the 1940's. Known as "Peacekeepers" (for their leader), they have come to dominate the planet. The PC's are meta-human rebels against the now-oppressive U.N. supers. The system uses d20 rolls for skills, but 2d10 rolls for combat. Character creation is point-bought, with 3 attributes (Body, Mind, and Agility) plus skills and powers.
Unsung
1st ed by Kirt Dankmyer (2005) Ivanhoe Unbound
A narrative game with no defined setting, but focuses on situation where the character make tough moral and ethical choices under pressure -- such as inner city police, American soldiers in the Vietnam War, or the American Civil War. It uses a simple one-die mechanic, where a loss during a stressful situation means that the other players may decide what happens to the character.
Untitled
1st ed by Keith Senkowski (2005) Bob Goat Press
A game designed mainly as an artifact, about a man in the modern world who is struggling with insanity and suicide. It has only a single player taking the part of the protagonist, lead by multiple antagonist players (like GMs). The game comes as a hand-sewn journal with hand written notes, a letter, a rapsheet, a photocopy of a hand written journal, and an audio recording.
Urban Faerie
1st ed by James Desborough (2004) Postmortem Studios
A humorous RPG about faeries as envisioned in Victorian England, now adapted to living in modern times. For example, Oberon had a midlife crisis and moved off to L.A. to start an Internet porn business. The faerie population is now divided into the "Seedy" and the "Unseedy" courts. The game uses a very simple system, where resolution works by 1d6 + attribute + possible bonus for one of two skills versus difficulty or opposed roll. Character creation is by choosing one of 25 archetypes, which defines your base attributes and a general skill ("thing they're good at"). You choose one additional skill, and may optionally raise one attribute by 1 and lower another by 1.
Urchin
1st ed by Clint Krause (2007) Clint Krause Games
A short modern fantasy RPG based on the independent film of the same name by John Harlacher. It is set in an underground haven for the homeless beneath Manhattan called Scum City. The place is ruled by a figure called the Old Man, who has promised to lead the inhabitants to a paradise within the hollow earth once he finds five noble souls. It uses a simple original system intended to force players to be proactive.
Usagi Yojimbo
1st ed by Greg Stolze (1997) Gold Rush Games
An RPG set in 17th century Japan, based on the anthropomorphic animal comic books by Stan Sakai about a deadly rabbit ronin. The inhabitants are all anthropomorphic animals in an otherwise fairly historical setting. It uses the Instant Fuzion system. The system includes 4 attributes, 11 races (i.e. animal species), and 9 job packages. This is unrelated from the later RPG adaptation, Usagi Yojimbo by Jason Holmgren and Pieter van Hiel for Sanguine Productions.
The Usagi Yojimbo Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Jason Holmgren, Pieter van Hiel (2005) Sanguine Productions
An RPG set in 17th century Japan, based on the anthropomorphic animal comic books by Stan Sakai about a deadly rabbit ronin -- the second RPG adaptation, after Greg Stolze's game Usagi Yojimbo for Gold Rush Games. The inhabitants are all anthropomorphic animals in an otherwise fairly historical setting. It uses a modified version of the step-die system from the Ironclaw game.
Uuhraah!
1st ed by Bob King (1976) Blackhawk Games
A silly prehistoric RPG emphasizing cavemen vs dinosaur combat.
Valence
1st ed by Colin Fredericks (2005) Valent Games
A space opera science fantasy game set in an original background in the year 3029 A.D. There are ten races divided into four megacorporation cultures, along with four remnant cultures, and scattered independents. The human empire has disintegrated after an artificial slave race (now known as "demons") rebelled. The other races include the reptilian Caractingessen, aquatic silicon-based Valorians, plant-like Nesti, snake-like Sa'crontor, aptly named Ogres, the artificially perfect Archangels, and others. There is also magic, known as "lording". Action resolution is 1d20 + attribute + skill vs difficulty. Character creation is selecting defaults for race, selecting one of 17 classes, followed by advantages, disadvantages, and skills.
Valherjar: The Chosen Slain
1st ed by Greg Spyridis (2006) Game Monkey Press
A modern-day urban fantasy RPG inspired by classic Norse mythology where the player characters are Valherjar - an elite caste of fallen warriors from all cultures and times resurrected by the Norse gods to fight in Ragnarok. They are divided into six groups by their patron god: Frigga, Heimdall, Odin, Sif, Thor or Tyr. Each warrior is nimated by six runestones implanted in their bodies, and has other abilities such as accelerated healing, ability to not eat or drink, and possible rune magic. It uses an original system called the AOR Gaming System. Resolution is based on rolling 3d6, then taking two dice to add to the appropriate stat to compare to difficulty, while the third die is used for initiative ("Action Opportunity Roll"). Characters have eight attributes: Dexterity, Agility, Strength, Endurance, Intelligence, Perception, Charisma and Will, ranked from 0 to 4 for mortal humans, while others may go up to 6. Character creation is limited point-based, spending 12 priority points among 4 categories (Attributes, Skill, Rune Magic, and Prestige). Each category then has options based on the priority points spent.
Valley of the Pharaohs
1st ed by Matthew Balent (1983) Palladium Books
A fantasy/historical RPG set in ancient Egypt, using a variant of the Palladium System. Character creation is random-roll caste (Nobility, Clergy, Bureaucracy, Commons) and attributes (Strength, Speed, Intellect, Power, and Persona); with a chosen occupation within the caste (Soldier, Priest, Scholar, Merchant, Thief), and partly chosen skills based on occupation.
Valtyr Chronicles
1st ed by Chuck D. Yager (2009) self-published
A fantasy RPG set in on an original fantasy world, Valtyr. It uses a skill-based dice pool system. Resolution is by rolling a number of d6s based on skill, where every 5-6 is a success. The rulebook is independently published via Lulu.com, while notes are available at the designer's blog.
Vampire Hunter$
1st ed by Mark Arsenault, Paul Arden Lidberg (1999) Nightshift Games
A horror spoof RPG about mercenary employess of a worldwide franchise monster-extermination service. The system is the "Cinematic Adventure System", which uses totalled dice vs difficulty.
Vampire: The Dark Ages
1st ed by Kevin Hassall, Jennifer Hartshorn (1996) White Wolf
A variant of the Vampire: The Masquerade RPG set in medieval times, including the complete rules adapted for that time period.
Vampire: The Masquerade
1st ed by Mark Rein•Hagen, Graeme Davis, Tom Dowd, Lisa Stevens, Stewart Wieck (1991) White Wolf
2nd ed (1992)
Revised ed (1998)
A popular horror RPG, set in a Gothic-Punk "World of Darkness" inspired by Anne Rice's novels where clans of vampires vie for supremacy. It uses a dice-pool system (the "Storyteller" system), rolling a set of d10's equal to (attribute + skill) where each roll over target number is 1 success. Character creation is limited point-based.
Vanishing Point
1st ed by Ashok Desai (2005) Sane Studios
2nd ed (2007)
A RPG set in an alternate Victorian world ruled by a totalitarian government, populated by insane and/or enlightened people who have vanished from Mundane Earth - along with strange animals, plants, and other races. It includes an original system. Resolution uses a d8 dice pool system where players roll dice equal to talent, with 8s being open-ended. The highest die is added to attribute and compared to the difficulty or opposed roll. The core attributes are Physique, Agility, Dexterity, Knowledge and Insight - each rated 0 to 6, with 1 being human average. Character creation is limited point-based, with an optional random-roll variant. Players distribute 5 points among attributes over the base for their genus, and the further points for talents. The core rules include 14 races, 38 optional career packages, and 21 pseudo-magical abilities.
Venus 2141
1st ed by Tony Pace (2009) Soyuz Arts
A science fiction tabletop roleplaying game set in the year 2141, where the solar system has been partly colonized. Venus is a colony of nearly 500 million including many Canadians and Russians who are fleeing global cooling on Earth. The people live on bio-engineered "rafts" that float 50km above the surface, supported by various other biotechnology. Mars is engaged in a war of independence, and the Venus colony supports Earth with an economy based on deuterium extraction, low-cost manufacturing, and biotechnology designs. It uses a dice pool system with broad rules for goals and conflicts. Characters have a three-tier skill tree of Field, Focus, and Specialty. For example, a character might have the Field of Coordination, Focus of Piloting, and Specialty of Boat. Resolution uses a dice pool system, rolling two d6s for every skill that is primary to the task (i.e. 2 for Field through 6 for Specialty). Every 4-6 is a success, with sixes open-ending. The GM has limited pools of dice - the Scene Pool and Session Pool - for use in conflicts. Successes in conflict are eventually used to buy goals - either from a set of defined goals for the Field, or negotiated for the conflict. Character creation is by picking six Lifestyles - each of which defines a set of Skills, Gear and Contacts - followed by six free skill picks.
Vice Squad: Eighties Police Adventures
1st ed by Mark Bruno (2003) Politically Incorrect Games
A modern-day police action mini-RPG, published as a 48-page electronic download and part of the "genreDiversion" series of one-shot, setting-lite games. It is in the genre of 1980's TV cop and action shows such as "Miami Vice" and "The A-Team". Character creation is limited point-based and includes a selection of cliches -- a player can use a selected cliche to gain an advantage in play. Action resolution is roll under Attribute + Skill on 2d6.
Victoria: A Roleplaying Game of Action and Intrigue in Victorian England
1st ed by Daniel Hodges (2011) Hazard Gaming
A historical RPG set in Victorian era England, focusing on suspense, action, and intrigue - including certain supernatural elements. It uses an original system that is based on the old English dice game "hazard" for resolution. The player rolls 2d6, where each skill has a range in the for success such as 6-8 or 5-9 (called their "main"). The main can be modified by spending plot points.
Victoriana: A role-playing game of Vile Villainy & Glorious Adventure
1st ed by John Tuckey, Scott Rhymer, Richard Nunn (2003) Heresy Gaming
An urban fantasy RPG, set in an alternate 1867 with magic, dwarves, eldren (elves), halfings, gnomes, beastmen, and ogres. In addition to the added fantasy elements, it combines together a range of historical events from 1838 to 1898 for its recent history. Religion is dominated by the Aluminat Church, which substitutes for Christianity. It uses a variant of the Fuzion system. Character creation is limited point-based after picking a class (Proletariat, Bourgeois, or Gentry) and a race. Lower classes are given more attribute points to balance their lack of money and influence.
Victorian Adventure
1st ed by Stephen Smith (1983) Kestrel Design / SKS Distribution
2nd ed (1985)
A historical mystery/adventure RPG set in 19th century England, using a simple system.
Vikings & Valkyrs
1st ed by Laurence Gillespie (1985) self-published
A game based on the Icelandic Eddas, which uses a class-based system with six stats rolled on 3d6, similar to AD&D. However, there is an original skill system and magic system. According to the back cover, the designer had done "eight years of graduate level research of Old Icelandic sources". Volume I was "Character Classes, Skills, Magic"; Volume II was "Combat, Runes, Songs of Power". An advertisement suggested that a third volume was coming soon, to be called "Monsters and Treasures of Middle Earth" -- but it is not clear whether this was ever published.
Villians and Vigilantes
1st ed by Jeff Dee, Jack Herman (1979) FGU
2nd ed (1982)
A generic superhero RPG. It uses a simple d20-based system (roll low) with random-roll character creation. The 3rd edition is retitled Living Legends and is being published by Unigames.
Violence: The Roleplaying Game of Egregious and Repulsive Bloodshed
1st ed by "Designer X" (1999) Hogshead Games
A "new style" RPG from Hogshead, at 24 pages. A parody of AD&D and other games, with tables for "random tenement generation" and "wandering victim treasure types".
Vox
1st ed by Michael Fiegel (2009) Aethereal Forge
A surreal RPG with multiple settings, where each player plays both a character with voices in his or her head, and the voice(s) in another PC's head. It uses the PDQ2 game engine, designed by Chad Underkoffler. The core book includes four setting seeds: "Facility," a distant future sci-fi horror setting; "Oversight," a modern-day political conspiracy setting; "Currents," a 1920s Lovecraftian mad science setting; and "Reckoning," an alternate Victorian historical mystery setting.
Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Deird're Brooks, Andrew Bates (2003) Sword and Sorcery Studios
2nd ed by Mike Johnstone, Andrew Bates, Luke Johnson (2005) Sword and Sorcery Studios
A fantasy roleplaying game based on the real-time strategy and massively multiplayer online computer games from Blizzard Entertainment. It is set in war-torn world, Azeroth, where humans, dwarves, high elves, night elves, goblins, orcs, and tauren struggle with the demonic Burning Legion and undead Scourge. It uses a variant of 3rd edition D&D, aka the D20 System. The first edition was officially a campaign setting for D&D, which included new core classes as well as 18 prestige classes. The second edition was renamed World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, and was a standalone game using the same system. The second edition also changes some prestige classes to core classes, and renamed the core abilities to Strength, Stamina, Agility, Intellect, Spirit, and Charisma.
Warhammer 40,000: Dark Heresy
1st ed by Owen Barnes, Kate Flack, Mike Mason (2008) Black Industries
A science fantasy role-playing game based on the Warhammer 40,000 miniatures games, set in the 41st millenium where humanity is organized under the Imperium - a reactionary feudal state of millions of worlds, whose leader the Emperor is worshipped as a living god. The players are acolytes of the Inquisition fighting perceived enemies of mankind including aliens, mutants, and heretics. It uses a variant of the Warhammer Fantasy RPG system. There are eight career paths: Adept, Arbitrator, Assassin, Cleric, Guardsman, Imperial Psyker, Scum, and Tech-Priest. Advancement for characters is via a pre-defined career path called ranks. As the character advances they may be presented with some career rank choices but these are almost chosen beforehand by the character's previous skill and talent choices, and how the player has played the character.
Warhammer 40,000: Deathwatch
1st ed by Ross Watson (2010) Fantasy Flight Games
A science fantasy role-playing game based on the Warhammer 40,000 miniatures games, set in the 41st millenium where humanity is organized under the Imperium - a reactionary feudal state of millions of worlds, whose leader the Emperor is worshipped as a living god. The players are Space Marines, member of the militant arm of the Inquisition that opposes alien influences, known as Inquisitorial Ordo Xenos. It uses a variant of the Warhammer Fantasy RPG system. Character creation has higher attribute values, and characters pick one of six chapters of the marines: The Black Templars, The Blood Angels, the Dark Angels, the Space Wolves, the Storm Wardens and the Ultramarines. This game adds a mechanic for Demeanors, traits that may be invoked once per story to modify a roll. Each PC has one Demeanor from their chapter and one that is personal.
Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader
1st ed by Rick Priestly (1987) Games Workshop
1st ed by Owen Barnes, Alan Bligh, John French, Andy Hoare, Tim Huckelbery, Michael Hurley, John Ivicek, Reason, Sam Stewart (2009) Fantasy Flight Games
The original Rogue Trader is a set of rules for science fiction wargaming, a precursor to the popular miniatures game Warhammer 40,000 and related to the Warhammer Fantasy RPG system. The "rogue traders" of the title are human adventurers with a special charter from the Emperor. A new game based on Warhammer Fantasy RPG was released by Fantasy Flight as part of a trilogy of role-playing games set in the Warhammer 40,000 universe.
Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay
1st ed by Richard Halliwell, Rick Priestly, Graeme David, Jim Bambra, Phil Gallagher (1986) Games Workshop
Revised ed (1995) Hogshead Games
2nd ed (2005) Black Industries
A dark fantasy game, set on an original fantasy world called simply the "Old World". It closely resembles renaissance Europe, with the addition of dwarves, elves, orcs, trolls, and other fantasy creatures. There is a mighty empire ruled by emperor Karl Franz, which is threatened by Chaos creatures and Dark Gods from the North threaten civilization. The setting is extremely dark with bits of black humor: most sides are decadent, corrupt, evil, or all three. It uses a simple percentile system. Skills are simple binary, resolution is by rolling percentile dice under your attribute. Character creation is class-based, with level-based advancement. The combat system is particularly dangerous to the PC's (with the possible exception of dwarves). After 1989, the first edition was turned over to an independent division of Games Workshop called Flame Publications, which over three years produced a new set of supplements. The second edition was taken over by Fantasy Flight Games in 2008, after the Black Industries imprint of Games Workshop was shut down.
Warlock: Dark Spiral
1st ed by Brandon Blackmoor, Susan Blackmoor, Chris Nasipak, David Bolack, Nathan Bordsley, R. Sean Borgstrom (1998) Black Gate Publishing
A modern magic RPG set in 2015, where warlocks have hidden themselves since the time of the Inquisition, and demons lurk in a nearby dimension. The system uses simple roll under attribute+skill on 1d10 resolution, although it also has notes on diceless play. Combat includes many options and modifiers. Character creation uses limited point-buy, similar to the "Storyteller" system used by White Wolf. The system concentrates (obviously) on the magic, which uses spontaneous spells based on 13 categories of magical skill.
War Machine: The Quasi-Historical Retro Sci Fi Role-Playing Game
1st ed by Jason Knizley (2000) Happy Nebula Adventure Publishing
An alternate history war genre RPG, set in 1942 a world where Nazi Germany gained access to horrific weapons based on a medieval codex found in 1937, and deciphered by scientists working for the SS in 1939. By 1942, London is destroyed, and most of Europe is occupied by Axis troops.
WarpWorld
1st ed by Greg Porter (1991) BTRC
A post-apocalyptic science fantasy RPG set in 2312 -- 300 years after World War III. The nuclear fires somehow opened up a gateway which allowed the "Old Gods" to return and mythic creatures to roam. It uses a variant of the Timelords system.
Warrior, Rogue and Mage
1st ed by , Greg Lynch (2005) Stargazer Games
http://www.stargazergames.eu/
Wars: The Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Ian Lizard Harac, Greg Lynch (2005) Mongoose Publishing
A science fiction RPG based on the trading card game from Decipher, Inc. It is set in the 24th century, when humanity is divided into Earthers, the Gongen (the largely Asian population of Mars), and the "Mavericks" inhabiting the moons of Jupiter. Recently, the Mumon Rift opened near the asteroid belt, and a mysterious and conquering race known as the Shi pulled their entire planet through, while being pursued by a monstrous four-legged race called the Quay. This uses a variant of 3rd edition D&D, aka the D20 System.
Waste World
1st ed by Bill King (1997) Manticore Productions
A far-future post-apocalyptic RPG, set on a planet ravaged by ten millennia of total war, where five gigantic city-states ("metrozones") are struggling over dwindling supplies of Drakonium, the ultimate energy source. The warfare has spawned mutation-causing weapons, bio-engineered plagues, robots turned amok by a computer virus, and a Galactic interdict trapping unpleasant aliens on the planet. Resolution is a simple d20+stat+skill+modifiers, where an 11+ succeeds. A roll of 1 fumbles, while 20 is roll again. Character creation is open point-bought. There are four attributes (Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence, and Psyche) rated -3 to +3, and skills rated 0 to 9 (divided into Easy, Normal, and Hard). Combat bases damage on the degree of success, with a possible multiplier and/or additive bonus. It also has hit location and critical hits. cf. Mark Hughes' Waste World resources.
The Way
1st "Vägen" ed by Johan Anglemark (1993) Västerås Stift
Quo Vadis? ed (1995)
1st "The Way" [English] ed (1997)
Ansgar ed (1998)
A Swedish-language Christian educational RPG, developed for church youth groups. It is Christian but non-denominational, intended to let the players deal with complex moral problems and serves as a basis for teaching a Christian way of life. Each part includes built-in scenarios. Part I ("Vagen") is a fantasy setting. Part II ("Quo Vadis?") is set in the early Roman times of the Christian church. Part III ("Ansgar") is based around missionaries to 9th century Sweden. In the base rules there are three races (Elf, Human, Dwarf) and three classes (Wizard, Warrior, Scout). The player rolls 2d6+6 for six characteristics (Strength, Intelligence, Attentiveness, Agility, Endurance, Looks). There are 18 skills split among the classes, where each skill has a base chance equal to its key characteristic. Resolution is by rolling 3d6 under skill value. cf. http://www.rollspel.com/engelsk/theway.htm
Wayfarer Infinity
1st ed by Timothy S. Till (1998) Rune's Law
A science fantasy RPG, set in a far-flung space empire with a huge variety of races and very common psionics (or "Genetic Abilities"). The system is rather chart intensive.
Wayfarers
1st ed by J. Swill, G. Vrill (2008) Ye Olde Gaming Companye
A fantasy role-playing game in the genre of "old school" Dungeons & Dragons. The core book includes details on the fantasy world of Twylos. Character creation is limited point-bought; modified by race (dwarf, elf, half-elf, hobgobling, half-orc, human, or orc); plus choice of disciplines and proficiencies (advantages and skills).
Weapons and Warriors
1st ed by Robert Alan Beatty (1981) self-published
A small-press fantasy RPG, published as a 66 pages long single-sided booklet with no table of contents or index. It uses a percentile system with other dice used for certain effects. The system has character classes of Fighter, Mage, Psychic, and Shape-changer -- plus the "Thief" class which has a skill-based subsystem. It suggests that other skill-based classes can use Thief as a template. There is a brief sample campaign setting (6 pages).
Weapons of the Gods
1st ed by Rebecca Sean Borgstrom, Brad Elliott (2005) EOS Press
A wuxia martial arts RPG, based on the comic book series by Tony Wong. This is set in China in a fictional mythic age, with extensive background on the history and culture. It uses a dice pool system where you roll as many d10s as your skill rating (0 to 5) and look for matches, where each matching die adds +10 to the number shown. So rolling two 7s would be 27, and three 4s would be 34. There are 25 general skills grouped into 5 attributes: Might, Speed, Presence, Genius and Wu Wei (or "harmony with the world"). The game includes a system for chi powers and secret arts.
Webs Basic Gaming System
1st ed by Keith Bailey (1991) Web Games
2nd ed (1993)
A small-press universal RPG system. It uses a percentile skill-based system (roll under skill). Character creation is by random-roll attributes (1d20 for each of the seven attributes) with point-bought skills and advantages. There are world-dependent "archetypes" which give a package of skills. There were two genre supplements published: "Web of Horrors" and "Web of Stars".
Weird War II: Blood on the Rhine
1st ed by Shane Lacy Hensley, John R. Hopler (2001) Pinnacle Entertainment Group
A modern-day magic RPG set in an alternate history period of World War II, in which runic magic, miracles, werewolves, and haunted tanks play a role. It uses the D20 System from 3rd edition D&D. Complete rules are not provided: basic rules for character creation, combat, and other systems refer to the D&D Players Handbook.
Weird War Two: Crusade for Europe
1st ed by Larry Snider, Matt Maaske (1999) Games What Games
A modern-day magic RPG set in an alternate historical period of WWII where the rumors of Nazi occult practices prove true as they unleash the old ways of magic into a world of technological warfare. (Note that this is unrelated to the "Weird War II" sourcebook from Pinnacle Games for the D20 System released in 2001.)
Werewolf: The Apocalypse
1st ed by Mark Rein•Hagen (1992) White Wolf
2nd ed (1994)
A modern horror/action game, where PCs are werewolves that are dedicated to defending the Earth and the environment against evil beings which are distorting the cosmic balance. It uses a variant of the "Storyteller" system.
Werewolf: The Wild West
1st ed by Justin Achilli, Ethan Skemp (1997) White Wolf
A companion games to Werewolf set in the old west. The rules are almost identical to the original. New features besides the old west background are the Storm Umbra (a spirit disrupting the Umbra in this time period).
Western City
1st (German) ed by Jörg Dünne (2009) Vagrant Workshop
1st (English) ed by Jörg Dünne (2009) Vagrant Workshop
A historical GMless RPG set in the American Wild West. Players each create a PC for themselves and two NPCs (a friend and a foe) that another player may play. Character creation includes by choosing a profession with top fixed rank, and five player-defined skills with a lower rank, along with three attributes (Body, Mind, and Charisma). Resolution works by a bidding mechanic used when two players differ on how to resolve a scene. The winner gets to control the scene, but the chips in the pot are passed out to all the other players.
WHAP Pulp Adventure System
1st ed by Tom K. Loney (2008) Peryton Publishing
Deluxe ed by Tom K. Loney (2009) Peryton Publishing
A pulp action game, the title an acronym for "Wildly Heroic Action Pulp", using the minimalist TAG (Tom's Adventure Gaming) system. Resolution uses 2d6 against a target number of difficulty minus attribute. Character creation includes eight character classes including Scrapper, Gumshoe, Flatfoot, Medium, Gimmick, and Professor.
W.H.A.T.? Customizable RPG
1st ed by Ryan Johnson (1997) Guild of Blades
A universal mini-RPG (16 pages). The system uses a simple stat + 1d6 roll vs difficulty (open-ending on rolls of 6). Combat includes initiative and dodge mechanics. There are also rules for spell casting, weapon mastery, magical weapon smithing, and immortal characters.
What Price Glory?!
1st ed by John Dankert, Jim Lauffenburger (1978) self-published
A medieval fantasy RPG similar to D&D, using a hex-grid position-based combat system and a spell-point magic system.
Wheel of Time Roleplaying Game
1st ed by Charles Ryan, Steven Long, Christian Moore, Owen K.C. Stephens (2001) Wizards of the Coast
A fantasy RPG set in the world of Robert Jordan's fantasy novel series. The system is derived from 3rd edition Dungeons & Dragons. Compared to that, it eliminates alignments and replaces the core classes with new ones. It also adds "Backgrounds" as options which modify character creation, and adds a new magic system with variable-level spells.
When Worlds Collide
1st ed by John Fountain, Alistair Dandy (2010) When Worlds Collide, Ltd
A multi-versal RPG system designed to cover traditional role-playing genres including fantasy, western, medieval, horror, and cyberpunk. It is set in a background where the player characters can shift between realities and gain powers at the cost of side effects to their own bodies. The system called the Tri Hexahedral Engine or T.H.E. System, using 3d6 for most rolls. Resolution is by rolling 3d6, adding attribute and skill modifiers, and comparing the total to a difficulty level (with the standard being 10). Character creation is point-based, with a chosen occupation that gives a bonus to broad skill groups, such as academic and technological. Character have 7 attributes, ranging from -3 to +5, along with detailed skills and special abilities. It also includes rules for the Rifts by which characters move between dimensions and gain powers.
While the World Ends: A story game about a future on the brink of change
1st (Swedish) ed by Wilhelm Person (2008) self-published
1st (English) ed by Wilhelm Person (2009) self-published
A short story game for 3-4 players, published in Swedish and English - with the original Swedish title "Medan Världen går under".
Whispering Vault
1st ed by Mike Nystul (1993) Pariah Press
2nd ed (1994) Pariah Press Ronin
A modern-day horror game where each PC is a unique horror from another dimension, fighting even more horrible things from beyond. The imagery is very strong in this.
Wilderness of Mirrors
1st ed by John Wick (2006) Wicked Dead Brewing Company
A modern espionage RPG, which concentrates on bringing to life the planning of espionage operations.
Wildside Gaming System
1st ed by Leigh Ronald Grossman (2005) Wildside Press
A generic role-playing system, focused on medieval fantasy. It uses a detailed skill-based mechanics, with hundreds of skills. Character creation is random-roll attributes and limited point-bought skills, with a number of skill points equal to the Intelligence attribute. Costs are listed for each skill, with cases of discounts for a high controlling attribute or related skill. Advancement is per skill based on use and training. The basic rules include a magic system with a wide range of spells among eighteen types of magic (Conjuration, Weather, Generation, Fire, Earth, Air, Water, Emotion, Healing, Illusion, Motion, Necromancy, Summoning, Transmutation, Animal, Vegetable, and Mineral).
Wild Talents: Superhero Roleplaying in a World Gone Mad
1st ed by Greg Stolze, Dennis Detwiller (2006) Arc Dream Publishing
A gritty superhero roleplaying game, the sequel to the previous game Godlike: Superhero Roleplaying in a World on Fire, 1936-1946. After the war, even more powerful Talents appeared. This is a more general superhero game, though tending towards cinematically gritty inspired by comics like "Top 10" and "Watchmen". The rules use Greg Stolze's "One-Roll Engine." Actions are resolved by rolling d10's equal to stat plus skill. The number of matches (i.e. d10's with the same value) indicate speed of success, while the number matched indicates quality of success.
Wild West
1st ed by Anthony P. LeBoutillier, Gerald D. Seypura (1981) FGU
An old west RPG. The detailed system uses a skill-based system with a universal probability chart, resolving using d20s and d6s only. Combat includes detailed facing rules and individual stats for horses. The 45 skills are cross-referenced to indicate where they add to each other.
Witchcraft
1st ed by C.J. Carrella (1996) Myrmidon
2nd ed (1999) Eden Studios
A game of modern-day magic, drawing on real-world beliefs of Wicca and other groups. The characters are practitioners of magic secretly fighting monsters and conspiracies in our world.
Witch Girls Adventures: The Drama Diaries Game
1st ed by Malcolm Harris (2009) self-published
A modern fantasy RPG for beginners, based on the independent comic of the same name. The PCs are 11 to 12 year old witches attending a School of Magic. Character creation is by choosing a clique, distributing a set of die values based on clique among the six attributes (Body, Mind, Senses, Will, Social, and Magic), and spending from two point pools (Mundane and Magic) on skills. It uses a step-die system, rolling a die type for attribute and adding the skill value versus difficulty. cf. http://www.witchgirlsadventures.com/
Witch Hunt
1st ed by Paul D. Baader, Roger Buckelew (1983) Statcom Simulations, Inc.
A historical/horror RPG set in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692. Player characters are either witches with actual magic, or lawful magistrates trying to hunt them down and prosecute them. It includes detailed notes on the setting: including daily lives of the Puritan Colonists, maps of typicial buildings, accusation process, and magistrate duties and procedures. It uses a simple percentile system. Character creation includes percentile random-roll of ten attributes (five physical and five mental), followed by 30 points to distribute among them, and then rolls for Age, Marital Status, Children, Height, Weight, Social Status, Home Town, and Occupation. Advancement is by level and consist of adds to attributes, depending on whether the character is a Witch or a Magistrate. Witches get most of their experience for remaining free and casting spells, while Magistrates get experience mainly from disrupting magic rituals, making accusations, and executing witches. There is a detailed accusation and trial process, as well as a magic system for witches.
Witch Hunter: the Invisible World
1st ed by Scott Charlton, Rucht Lilavivat, Henry Lopez, M. Sean Molley, Brian Schoner, Robert J. Schwalb, Robert Vaughn (2007) Paradigm Concepts
A role-playing game in the genre of "swashbuckling horror", set in a the 1690s of a parallel Europe and America. In the New World, Aztecs and Incas are still around -- resisting the Spanish with magic. The PCs are among the few who by providence can deal with the invisible world of the supernatural. There are a variety of factions among these, though all signed an Accord following the London fire of 1666, which had resulted from infighting. It uses a dice pool system similar to White Wolf's Storyteller system from World of Darkness. Roll a number of d10s equal to attribute plus skill, where each result of 7 or higher is a success. Character creation is limited point-based. There are nine attributes divided into physical, mental, and spiritual. All begin at 2 and you have a set of points to increase them.
With Extreme Prejudice
Pre-release ed by Christopher Dorn, Matthew D. Grau, Lance P. Johnstone (1995) Apex Publications Inc
A sci-fi RPG by Apex Publishing. The full version was never published, but several hundred copies of a pre-release were sold at GenCon which included the battle rules but not full role-playing material. It was illustrated by C. Brent Ferguson, edited by Peter Mork. It was set in a futuristic interstellar setting with humans and several alien races. The prerelease version uses a dice pools system where you add together base dice for the weapon and the character's ability in that weapon class. Die types range from d3 to d12.
With Great Power...
Preview/Interim ed by Michael S. Miller (2004) Incarnadine Press
Full ed (2005)
A superhero RPG specifically about the dramatic side of Silver Age comics, only incidentally about superpowers. The system is designed so that as you take losses you gain advantages against the GM's villains, so all stories involve getting beaten for the first two acts. Resolution uses a hand of playing cards rather than dice. There is a strong emphasis on story advice and examples of play for how to generate an interesting storyline. Character creation is done by filling in six Aspects, namely Origin, Powers, Convictions (i.e. deep-set beliefs), Relationships, Identity (i.e. non-superhero secret identity), and any Duties you might have to others.
Wizards
1st ed by Ralph Bakshi, Ken Whitman, Jeff Zitomer, Brett Maddox (1992) Whit Productions
An RPG set in the fantasy world of Ralph Bakshi's animated movie "Wizards" (1977), where magical faeries fight against technology-wielding mutants led by the evil wizard Blackwolf. It uses a simple skill-based system (roll under skill on d20), with point-bought character creation, dominated by choice of race.
Wizard's Realm
1st ed by Niels Erickson, C. Polite, W.G. Murphy (1981) Mystic Swamp
2nd ed (1983)
A medieval fantasy RPG using a simple system. Character creation is class-based and advancement is level-based.
Wizard's World
1st ed by David Silvera, Douglas S. Krull (1983) Fantasy Worlds Unlimited
A fantasy genre RPG, subtitled "A Complete Fantasy Role-playing game For Imaginitive Players Of All Ages". It is set in an original fantasy world with a central city known as "Mousehole". The game as a whole is very similar to Dungeons & Dragons, particularly in the experience tables and magic lists was copied almost verbatim. The rules are fairly simple, with a few innovations, such as spell points for regulating wizard's spell memorization.
Woodland Warriors
1st ed by Simon Washbourne (2011) Beyond Belief Games
A fantasy RPG about anthropomorphic animals in the genre of the Redwall novels by Brian Jacque. The player character races include mice, moles, hedgehogs, squirrels and badgers - collectively known as the Kind. The default setting is that the player characters are residents of Alder Vale, home of Stonewell Abbey and Murkenhill Fort. They defend their home against pillaging rats and weasels as well as various solitary predators. The game uses a variant of the system from Swords & Wizardry tailored to the genre. The classes include friar, scout and wizard - and multiclassing is supported. The basic game includes 40 monsters and an introductory adventure by David Bezio entitled "Shadow's Roost".
Woof, Meow
1st ed by Ulrico Font, John Willford (1988) Game Systems, Inc.
A fantasy RPG about playing cats and dogs with magical powers. It uses an original system, where resolution is by rolling less than skill on the total of a number of d6s based on difficulty (from 1d6 for Very Easy to 5d6 for Very Hard). Character creation starts with choice of cat or dog, and is limited point-based. There are 6 attributes (Strength, Intelligence, Agility, Size, Cute and Health) and 19 skills. Each skill has a default value of a single attribute, and when bought starts at the sum of two attributes, and can be raised further with more points. Skill points can also be spent on spells, and can be modified by taking Advantages (including Keen Nose, Flea Collar, or Toughcoat) or Problems (including Age, Bad Sight, Declawed, Fleas, or Limper). Cats have innate abilities to reduce falling damage ("land on their feet"), an option for nine lives, an option for "patron" (distinct from owner). Dogs have innate abilities to heal faster ("licking their wounds"), to summon their owners, to sense bad intentions in humans, and one day per month have a +1 to rolls ("Every Dog Has His Day"). There are 48 spells for cats and 46 for dogs - some only available if simpler prerequisites are taken (i.e. Stay Put requires Stay, and Lockjaw requires Stay Put). The basic game includes stats for NPC animals including Mice, Rats, Horses, Sheep, Pigs, Squirrels, Birds and Rabbits. It also includes a six-page sample adventure.
Wordplay: The Big Five
1st ed by Graham Spearing (2009) D101 Games
A narrative roleplaying game with four mini-settings, known as themes - including "The Cold Crusade" by Mark Galeotti; "The Empire of Gatan" by Newt Newport with Graham Spearing; "Infinite War" by Newt Newport; and "Keep Portland Weird" by Charles Green. Character creation uses free-form traits assigned to categories Body, Mind, or Soul. The player assigns two traits at 6d, five at 5d, and nine at 4d; as well as defining a long-term goal, short-term goal, and shared group goal. Resolution uses a dice pool mechanic, rolling d6s equal to a trait appropriate to the challenge, where every 4 or 5 is one success, and 6 is two successes. There are bonus dice of standard 1d per 3 trait points from assisting characters, and bonus dice if the character invokes a Goal.
World Action and Adventure
1st ed by Gregory J. Kinney (1985) M.S. Kinney Corporation
A universal "realistic" RPG, which attempts factual information of everything on Earth: including geography, occupations, history, and animals.
The World of Aden
1st ed by Shane Lacy Hensley (1995) West End Games
A dark fantasy RPG setting for the MasterBook system: the world of the computer game "Aden" from SSI. The world features thunder trains and monstrous "nocturnals".
The World of Barador RPG
1st ed by Dana Jorgensen (1995) Alternate Realities Publications
2nd ed (1998)
A small-press fantasy RPG set on an original world.
The World of Bloodshadows
1st ed by Greg Farshtey, Ed Stark (1994) West End Games
2nd ed by Nikola Vrtis (2004) West End Games
An urban fantasy RPG setting originally released as a boxed set including the setting book and the MasterBook system core book. The second edition was released as a supplement for the D6 System. It is set in a fantasy world, Marl, reminiscent of U.S. 1940s film noir with the addition of monsters and magic. Within Marl, there are well-defended cities surrounded by large tracts of wilderness where monsters roam.
The World of Darkness
1st ed by Bill Bridges, Rick Chillot, Ken Cliffe, Mike Lee (2004) White Wolf
A modern horror RPG, the successor to a number of previous games including Vampire: The Masquerade, Werewolf: The Apocalypse, Mage: The Ascension, and other games. This is something of a revised edition, with the specific games appearing as world modules for this core rulebook. It uses a dice pool system, revised to roll a number of d10s based on attribute + skill + modifiers. Each result of 8-10 is a success, with a 10 giving an additional roll. Character creation is limited point-based, with a changed set of attributes and skills. It has a number of supplements that form semi-independent game lines within the same setting - Vampire: The Requiem (2004), Werewolf: The Forsaken (2005), Mage: The Awakening (2005), Promethean: The Created (2006), Changeling: The Lost (2007), Hunter: The Vigil (2008), and Geist: The Sin-Eaters (2009).
The World of Esaene
1st ed by Brant Guillory (1999) BaDGe Publications
A fantasy RPG, set in an original world populated by dwarves, elves, and other fantasy races. The basic game includes a campaign background in the world. The system resolves actions using stat + 2d6 vs difficulty or opposed roll, using special stats in combat such as (weapon combat value + strength + level)/3. Character creation us random-roll attributes (1d6+3 for the three attributes: Strength, Skill and Intelligence. There is also a magic system included based on bending the six laws of physics: gravity, spirit, thought, light, noise, and magic.
The World of Indiana Jones
1st ed by Brian Sean Perry, Greg Farshtey (1994) West End Games
A pulp-action RPG based on the movies, using the MasterBook system.
The World of Necroscope
1st ed by Ed Bolme (1995) West End Games
A modern occult RPG, based on the popular series of novels by Brian Lumley. Psionic secret agents ("ESPers"), communications from beyond the grave ("necroscopy"), and deadly vampires ("Wamphyri") are just a small part of the Necroscope universe. It uses the MasterBook system.
The World of Species
1st ed by Teeuwynn Woodruff, Dennis Feldman, Greg Farshtey (1995) West End Games
A sci-fi RPG based on the alien-among-us movie, using the MasterBook system.
World of Synnibarr
1st ed by Raven McCracken (1991) Real Dream Inc.
2nd ed (1993) Wonderworld
A high-powered traditional fantasy game set in a hollow world -- actually a generation starship built by a god out of the planet Mars, following an eons-long dark ages of plagues and wars. The worldship has both an exterior and interior surface complete with vegetation, and is broken up into regions where magic doesn't work and regions where technology doesn't work. The system uses random-roll and class-based character creation. There are 50 character classes including Psielf, Bio-Syntha Cyborg, Flymen, Armored Mantises, Amazons, Alchemists, and more. Advancement is level-based, with all classes going up to 600th level. Characters can have "tenths", where each tenth reduces damage by 1/10 (i.e. two tenths means the character takes 1/100 damage).
The World of Tank Girl
1st ed by Bill Olmesdahl, Brian Schomburg, Greg Farshtey, Ed Stark (1995) West End Games
A post-apocalyptic RPG based on the comic book (by Jamie Hewlett and Alan Martin) and the 1995 MGM movie of the same name. It is about a near future where a comet strike devastates the Earth. In 2033, the only water left is under the control of an evil megacorporation, The Department of Water and Power. There are many oddities, including mutant kangaroos and gadgets like the Dangerball and the Plasma-powered Flesh-Reversing Rifle. It uses the MasterBook system, and was packaged with a copy of the core rule book.
World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game
2nd ed by Mike Johnstone, Andrew Bates, Luke Johnson (2005) Sword and Sorcery Studios
A fantasy roleplaying game based on the massively multiplayer online computer game from Blizzard Entertainment. This is the second edition, where the previous edition was a campaign setting with the shorter title of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game. This second edition is a standalone game, using a variant of 3rd edition D&D, aka the D20 System.
Worlds Beyond
1st ed by Frank S. Shewmake, Douglas, Laedtke, Lavette, Skilling, Warth (1990) Other World Games
A spacefaring sci-fi RPG. It uses a simple skill-based system.
Worlds of Wonder
1st ed by Steve Perrin, Steve Henderson, Gordon Monson, Greg Stafford, Lynn Willis (1982) Chaosium
The earliest universal RPG, this used the Chaosium universal system (Basic Role-playing) as a base and provided three worldbooks: "Fantasy World", "Super World", and "Future World". Character creation varies: all have random-roll attributes. Superheroes have point-bought skills and powers. F*W characters have career training (a la Traveller). M*W characters are have class-like templates (warrior, rogue, sage, sorceror).
World-Tree
1st ed by Bard Bloom, Victoria Borah Bloom (2001) Padwolf Publishing
A fantasy RPG set on an original world which is a giant tree. The world-tree lies under a crystalline sun rolling on a track in the sky. Its branches are fifty miles wide and thousands long. The flat upper sides are the home of civilization, while the sides of the branches are untamed wilderness. The PC's are among 8 anthropomorphic animal species: Cani (dogs), Herethroy (beetles), Orren (otters), and Rassimel (racoons) -- along with the rarer Gormoror (bears), Khtsoyis (flying octopi), Sleeth (panthers), and Zi Ri (dragons).
World Wrestling Federation RPG
1st ed by M. David Clark (1993) Whit Productions
A professional wrestling RPG, licensed from Titan Sports. At its heart is a wrestling combat system including numerous over-the-top maneuvers. Campaign play is supported by characters advancing in standing from match to match.
Wraeththu: From Enchantment to Fulfillment
1st ed by Storm Constantine, Gabriel Strange, Lydia Wood (2005) Immanion Press
A science fantasy RPG based on the novels by Storm Constantine. It is set in the near future as humanity is in decline, ravaged by insanity, conflict, disease and infertility. A new race -- the Wraeththu -- mysteriously appeared in the ruins of northern cities. They are beautiful and androgynous as well as stronger than humans and psychically gifted. They can also transform humans into creatures like themselves. It uses an original system, with a ction resolution using 1d20. There is a weapon creation subsystem combined with an emphasis on swordplay. The psychic/magic/psionic rules use a freeform system reminiscent of Ars Magica.
Wraith: The Oblivion
1st ed by Mark Rein•Hagen, Richard Dansky, Jennifer Hartshorn, Sam Chupp (1994) White Wolf
2nd ed (1996)
A modern fantasy-horror RPG about ghosts ("wraiths") caught between the world of their former lives and the fantasy-like underworld ("Stygia"). Stygia (specifically the underworld of Europe and North America) is a world embroiled in civil war between the Hierarchy, Renegades, and Heretics. Individual wraiths are held on by "fetters" (passions for things left behind in the world of the living), while being tempted by their "shadows" (evil halves of their souls). The interesting mechanic is that each player has a PC and plays another PC's shadow.
The 2nd edition and later books downplayed somewhat the introspective and fatalistic aspect, in favor of more conventional fight against evil in the underworld.
Wushu: The Ancient Art of Action Role-playing
1st ed by Daniel Bayn (2003) Bayn.org
An electronically-published martial arts action RPG. It uses a simple dice-pool system based on player description. The player rolls 1d6 plus an additional die for each embellishment. Embellishments are descriptive items that add flash and style to the described action. Each roll that is less than the stat (rated 1 to 5) is a success.
Wu Xing: The Ninja Crusade
1st ed by Eloy Lasanta (2010) Third Eye Games
An Asian-themed fantasy RPG based on animated works such as Naruto and Avatar the Last Airbender. It is set in a large empire, where four years ago the Emperor declared war on the ninja clans who were formerly allies. The majority of ninja clans have banded together to form the Lotus Coalition to try to survive, stave off, or defeat the Empire in this latest war. It uses a version of the Dynamic Gaming System (DGS) from Apocalypse Prevention, Inc. by the same author. The core mechanic is 1d20 + Attribute + Skill vs. a Target Number of 10, 20, 30, or 40. Character creation is by picking a type (Ninja or Ronin) and clan, as well as an Element and Passion - which determines starting Chi and permanent Yin and Yang. There is limited point-buy of attributes and skills, along with bonus points usable for Gifts, and possibly more from taking Drawbacks.
Wyrd is Bond
1st ed by Jason L. Blair (2004) Key 20 Publishing
A modern fantasy RPG, where the PCs are magic-using gang members known as "slingers", with the magical power of their "Wyrd". Magic has always existed in our world, though mostly hidden because it has backed oppressed classes such as poor blacks and Latinos. Magic has recently gained press and publicity during the rise of rap and hip-hop, as the gang slingers became popular and brought their knowledge of the streets and magic to a broader audience. Character creation uses freeform Traits, two positive and two negative, to indicate things your character is good at or bad at. You are given a broad-range Skill to cover things your character has proficiency in. You have at least one Ally, one Enemy, one Lover, and one Rival. Action resolution is based on 3d6, plus extra dice for traits. The player rolls and keeps the highest three (for positive traits) or lowest three (for negative traits). The dice are then assigned to three categories: Order (how fast you execute, i.e. initiative), Power (how effective you are at achieving your goal), and Payback (a gift from the Wyrd, giving benefits such as healing, not being damaged in the first place, more success on your next magical action, or a nifty magical effect on your next mundane action).
Xandoria Core Fuzion
1st ed by J. Parker (2005) Dilly Green Bean Games
A science fantasy RPG set on a planet that once was the greatest prison in the universe. After a mysterious cataclysm, it was thrown into an ice age, and recovered centuries later with the the construction of Atmosphere Controllers. The planet is now lush with life, but plagued by hidden horrors still lurking there. It uses a variant of the Fuzion system, originaly from R. Talsorian games.
Xenoforce
1st ed by Simon Parkinson (1997) Dragon Games
An alien invasion conspiracy RPG, based around a secret government organization dedicated to defending the Earth against an alliance of aliens planning to infiltrate and conquer Earth. In 1947, a number of aliens were left behind from a crashed spaceship, who allied to prepare for a slower-than-light invasion centuries in the future. There are five types of aliens on Earth: Controller, Infiltrater, Observer, Morpher, Grunt. The system uses five attributes (Strength, Perception, Constitution, Agility, Influence) and various percentile skills. Character creation includes random-roll attributes (2d4 x 10 + 1d10, for a range from 21 to 90) and point-bought skills.
Xro Dinn Chronicles
1st ed by Matthew Webster, Eric Wujcik, Aaron Rosenberg, Dan Ryan, Jamie Jarvis, Matthew Webster, Darrell Hardy (2001) Ionian Game Studios
A hard science fiction RPG, set in a lawless sector of the galaxy known as the Frontier. Five races are plagued by the shapeshifting Sharr'Dann, who are more powerful physically and technologically than any other race. It uses a skill-based system using d20 rolls.
Year of the Phoenix
1st ed by Martin Wixted (1986) FGU
A sci-fi RPG set in 2197 where Russians occupy most of North America. Astronauts of the U.S. Space Command crash-land after an unusual "temporal displacement", and emerge to oppose them. It uses a percentile skill-based system. Character creation is limited point-bought.
Yellow Dawn: The Age of Hastur
1st ed by David J. Rodger (2005) Lulu
1st ed by David J. Rodger (2008)
A post-apocalyptic horror RPG set in a future where the Earth's population has been devastated by disease some time in the 2030s. The orbital colonies and deep-space habitats cut off contact to protect themselves from infection and did nothing to help. After over 70% of the population died, further horrors emerged including zombies and orcs (the results of infection) as well as more supernatural phenomena. It uses a percentile skill-based system similar to Call of Cthulhu, adding Ranks to professions that represent conviction and faith in your own abilities, that function similar to a character level system.
Ysgarth
1st ed by David Nalle (1979) Ragnarok Press
2nd ed (1980)
3rd ed (1982)
4th ed (1982)
5th ed (1985)
7th ed (1998)
A fantasy-genre RPG, which has changed significantly over 7 editions. In general, it uses a percentile skill system, with limited point-bought character creation. It has an action-point-based combat system.
Zero
1st ed by Steve Stone, Lester Smith (1997) Archangel
2nd ed (1999) Dynasty
A bizarre sci-fi game where PC's are biomech hive members cut off from the collective consciousness (the god-queen "Zero"). The characters learn to become individuals and find that their lives were not as nice as they thought. Worse, they are now considered enemies of the hive. It uses a simple skill system: Choose a number of skills that you want to concentrate on ("Focus skills"). The number you chose is your Focus rating. On focus skills you want to roll over the Focus rating; on other skills you want to roll under the Focus rating. Thus, the more Focus skills you have, the worse you are at them. The roll is 1d6 times 1d6 (i.e. 1 to 36).
Zombeja! Ovella! / Zombie Cinema
1st ed by Eero Tuovinen (2007) Arkenstone Publishing
1st English ed (2008) Arkenstone Publishing
A horror genre storytelling game about a zombie apocalypse, that mixes board game and role-playing elements. Players take turns directing scenes, and by conflicts with other players their character token may move closer to the zombie token. If the zombie token is in the same scene, the player describes how their character is killed. The game comes in a boxed set that includes a game board, tokens, rules sheet, and 27 Cinema Cards. Players choose from three types of character cards for creating their characters.
Zombi: The Earth won't hold the Dead...
1st ed by Matt Johnston, Colin Johnston, Paul Keenan (1999) Crucible
A modern-day zombie horror RPG, based primarily on the George Romero movies. It is published as a 68-page 5"x8" booklet that includes the brief rules and more detailed background. It is set in a world where in 1999 the dead begin to rise and rapidly cause a breakdown of society. It uses a minimalist system. There are 10 traits (combining attributes and skills). Actions are resolved by rolling 2d6 under trait + modifiers.
The Zorcerer of Zo
1st ed by Chad Underkoffler (2006) Atomic Sock Monkey Press
A fairy tale fantasy RPG using a variant of the Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) system from in Truth & Justice. It includes description of the genre and many notes from campaign play, but only a few details on a sample setting. Resolution is based on 2d6 + stat versus difficulty or opposed roll, possibly modified by spending Hero Point(s). Character creation is limited point-bought, distributing 6 Ranks of Qualities among player-defined traits and defining one Flaw that grants Hero Points when invoked.

John H. Kim <jhkim@darkshire.net>
Last modified: Thu Apr 14 22:02:47 2016