Favorite SF RPG
It’s worth starting this off by saying that I don’t really consider Star Wars to be science fiction. It is, but it isn’t. I think of it as Science Fantasy. You don’t have to agree but much like Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, despite the aliens and the space ships, the story has far more in common with a fantasy tale than it does it’s science fiction setting.
So where does that leave me? Despite my long tenure as a gamer, I have never played Traveler. I’m not a fan of the weighty tomes and complex rules of the Warhammer 40,000 games by Fantasy Flight. I’ve only briefly indulged in role-playing in the Battletech universe (Mechwarrior, 2nd edition), and I put Gamma World in the same boat as Star Wars… it’s more about fantasy than sci-fi. Does Shadowrun qualify? I’m not really sure about that either, though I’d say that despite the elves and trolls, Shadowrun is more of a sci-fi game than any Star Wars RPG.
I suppose I should admit that when looking through my RPG collection, both physical and digital, I can safely say that my forays into any sort of SF gaming have been incredibly thin. It is at this point that I want to simply declare Teenagers from Outer Space my favorite sci-fi RPG and move on.
To be fair, my old group did play a short campaign with the FASA Star Trek RPG. It was a ton of fun, a percentile-based system similar in many ways to BRP. I remember having a blast with that campaign, though partly because we just yahoo’ed our way through it and partly because I was the ship’s medical officer, which automatically makes me the coolest member of the crew. Surprisingly, it felt like a good Star Trek game – though that may again be that we just enjoyed it as such. The actual game might have been terrible. We only really scratched the surface.
I give up. I’ll call it a draw between Teenagers from Outer Space and Shadowrun, Anniversary Edition. Both are sorta sci-fi. Both are fun, well-written games, and well, I’m not much for sci-fi gaming anyway, so that’s that.
Thanks for reading today’s exploration of my complicated feelings about genre classifications and hopefully you’ll be back with me tomorrow…