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RPG» Forums » General Discussion » General Role-Playing

Subject: Good Steampunk RPG's? rss

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David Whitcher
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you might do better posting this question at http://rpg.geekdo.com/
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dralius wrote:
you might do better posting this question at http://rpg.geekdo.com/

True.

The best I've seen is Space: 1889 (Original edition). I like that the invention system works quite well. However, since social status is very much a part of the game, people can have problems with that.
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Take a look to Victoriana 2nd Edition and Etherscope, both of them are receiving positive reviews.
Besides, you can freely download Lady Blackbird from http://www.onesevendesign.com/ladyblackbird/ which seems pretty interesting.
Hope this helps.
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Tim Richter
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It is hard to find and out of print, but the Iron Kingdoms RPG from Privateer Press was fantasy steampunk at its finest. It was D20 based and used the WoTC 3.5 rules. The core books (Vol 1 and 2)

TIE IN TO BGG.COM it was also the RPG version with ties to the tabletop miniatures game Warmachine.

Tim
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I wouldn't call it "acclaimed" (is it even published?)... however for a look at something a bit different in the SteamPunk genre, have a look at this series of columns of a game design in progress, over at rpg.net...

http://www.rpg.net/news+reviews/collists/design.html
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Aaron Sapp
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Castle Falkenstein has a loyal following. It is of course OOP and somewhat hard to find.
GURPS has steampunk, screampunk, and Castle Falkenstein sourcebooks.
I had a D&D 3e supplement called Steam and Sorcery.
Hollow Earth Expeditions is a pulpy game that could certainly be used for a steampunk game.

What are you looking for that would make a steampunk game for you? Are you looking for pseudovictorian setting material or are you looking for mechanical rules for invented devices and failures?
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This is a good starting point. Sort by core rules or rating.

http://rpg.geekdo.com/rpggenre/166/steampunk

Here are some to check out:

Full Light, Full Steam
Space: 1889
Victoriana Core Rulebook
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You can get the Iron Kingdoms books in pdf, I believe, which is an amazing setting. It is the setting for the tabletop wargames Warmachine and Hordes, actually.

Apart from that, we actually use the Mutants and Masterminds system. Replace everything super-hero-esque with steampunk equivalents, and you are set. That isn't hard to do either, as you are free to theme your powers any way you like in the first place. Blast can be a gout of fire you breathe, or a shot from your magically-empowered steam cannon.
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Moved to RPGGeek.
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Yeah. The good news is that they recently releases all the books in PDF. You should be able to find them at DriveThru RPG... I think. as for hardcopy, I've seen some going for $100+. They are hot commodities.
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One good method to find good steampunk RPGs is to visit the genre Steampunk. In the list of linked items, try setting Sort to "Rank" and Category to "Core Rules". This will then return you a list of the main RPG rulebooks listed as Steampunk in the database, in the order of their RPGG rank (which is an adjusted average of users' ratings for the item, for items that have been given ratings by at least five users).

Currently only two steampunk core rulebooks have achieved a rank, but as the RPG Geek Ranking Project progresses this should increase. In the meantime you can try sorting by "Average Rating" instead, but be aware of the number of ratings for the items (a single high rating from one user can skew the results).

(I see that sbszine gave the same advice above. I'm just expanding with some further helpful instructions.)
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The only Steampunk game I own is OGL Steampunk. It's Marmite D20 (love it or hate it) but looks solid. Though I've never actually played it.
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If you stumble across Castle Falkenstein or Space 1889 you should definitely check them out. Falkenstein is a fav of mine, it has a lot of atmosphere, subplot, progressive but awkward rules and a notoriously bad book binding. Space 1889 is good, but not imo excellent. Also, it has very sparse atmospherical parts.

I want to promote Forgotten Futures, which is all over the internet by now. A proper shareware RPG it's been in circulation since mid 90s, and thus has a lot of extra supplements for it.

Among the more commercially successful RPG's that could be considered steampunk is Deadlands, which seems to have qualities, but also limitations, which is why I never honestly looked much into it.

Another forgotten game is the classic Chill!, which also suffers slightly from excess subplot.
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A lot depends on if one wants sci-fi style Steampunk or Fantasy Style...

Falkenstein has magic, dragons, elves, dwarves, etc.

Eberron is wickedly fantastic D&D steampunk.

Space 1889 is almost purely tech... not even psionics!

GURPS Steampunk also is pretty sci-fi style... but being GURPS, can have the fantasy elements added easily.

Gear Krieg is also sci-fi style steampunk mecha anime style. Serious genre mashup: mecha steampunk WWII.


Lady Blackbird is right in the middle; physically highly improbable setting, but no paranormal stuff in evidence (heck, almost no system in evidence...).
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I have been looking at various setting-less generic systems/toolkits over the last few weeks. From what I have read, It seems like the D6 systems would be excellent for a steampunk genera. The exploding dice mechanic would give a chance for just about anything happening.

Has anyone done a D6 steampunk? Sounds like a neat thing to work on if no one has...

MB
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mbtigger wrote:
Has anyone done a D6 steampunk? Sounds like a neat thing to work on if no one has...

If you mean a system that only uses D6s, Space 1889 does so. If you mean West End's D6 system--unsure.

aramis wrote:
Space 1889 is almost purely tech...

I have to agree with this, though it is a Burroughs-like future with native populations on Venus, Mars, and the Moon. It might also be noted it's a pretty bright, optimistic, Victorian universe, not the dingy, corrupt, industrial revolution of The Difference Engine.
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Tall_Walt wrote:

If you mean a system that only uses D6s, Space 1889 does so. If you mean West End's D6 system--unsure.


I've been looking over the West End D6 system, so that is specifically what I was thinking of.
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Check out http://www.sfvictory.com
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lantern314 wrote:
Castle Falkenstein has a loyal following. It is of course OOP and somewhat hard to find.


That's an understatement. It's somewhat hard to find a torrent of it. It's almost impossible to find a physical copy. I haven't even seen one at a ridiculously inflated price yet.
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Steamgrl wrote:

You might want to wander into The Tavern and ask for some assistance getting Steamfortress Victory into the database. Unfortunately, building an entry in the DB is only slightly less complex than building a difference engine.
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Last I checked (5 min ago), the legal PDF of Castle Falkenstein is $16 at DTRPG.
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I personally am very interested in giving Wolsung: Magia Wieku Pary a try, it's one of the most played games in scandinavie and they also started to translate it to english. They have a couple of documents only, quickstart guides and a little setting book that you can get for free.
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mbtigger wrote:
Tall_Walt wrote:

If you mean a system that only uses D6s, Space 1889 does so. If you mean West End's D6 system--unsure.


I've been looking over the West End D6 system, so that is specifically what I was thinking of.


Unfortunately the system used by GDW wasn't particularly suited to Space 1889. At least one of the module designers used Call Of Cthulhu to run his games and then converted to the GDW system.
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Anjohl wrote:
Are there any relatively acclaimed Steampunk RPG's out there? I have been considaring the World of Darkness/Shadowrun stuff, but my preference is for a SP setting.

Amid all the good suggestions, just wanted to mention that there's nothing wrong with using Shadowrun, if that's what you've had your eye on, and spending half an hour steampunkifying it.
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andyl wrote:
mbtigger wrote:
Tall_Walt wrote:

If you mean a system that only uses D6s, Space 1889 does so. If you mean West End's D6 system--unsure.


I've been looking over the West End D6 system, so that is specifically what I was thinking of.


Unfortunately the system used by GDW wasn't particularly suited to Space 1889. At least one of the module designers used Call Of Cthulhu to run his games and then converted to the GDW system.


The system works just fine for the setting. The research rules are sweet. The problem is 3 explicit skill use resolution methods (1d6 vs skill, skill d6's totaled vs a target number, and skill d6's as a count successes pool) in the rules, and inconsistent application. The rules strongly reinforce certain setting elements, but the mechanics are a bit cumbersome for those who want a single unified mechanic.

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