Best (PnP) RPGs of 2018?





  • @Thenomain Man, this article is NPR as Hell (in that NPR lists HOT NEW MUSIC and always has these artists I've never heard of before in my life). I haven't seen or heard of most of these games, let alone the top 3.

    Man, the Vampire 5th thing sucks. Production-wise it's one of the most amazing games I've seen in a long time. Does it deserve the enmity it received? Handwobble. Only 2 pieces of content in the book; perhaps only 2 PARAGRAPHS weren't popular with the SJW crowd (who were dragged into poring through the books because White Wolf hired Zak S. for a video game). With the going standard being keep the parts you like and make house rules for the rest, I don't think it truly deserved the treatment that it got and don't think the issues were as insurmountable and unacceptable as the critics made them out to be. WW tried to clarify and make right, but the attitude of the people who got angry about that stuff was that they were inconsolable and nothing short of every writer being sacked would be acceptable. In the end I don't think it was a failed launch; I think it was assassination.

    So, clearly, I put V5 as #1 for 2018 in my book.


  • Pitcrew

    @Ghost It really was undeserved; given that a lot of what was presented was milder than ... I'd have to say most of the original books. People can make the 'times have changed' argument and all that, but really they were just giving people more of what they had in the early editions (As opposed to the CoD stuff rewriting everything)



  • @Killer-Klown said in Best (PnP) RPGs of 2018?:

    It really was undeserved; given that a lot of what was presented was milder than ... I'd have to say most of the original books. People can make the 'times have changed' argument and all that, but really they were just giving people more of what they had in the early editions (As opposed to the CoD stuff rewriting everything)

    How dare you, sir. There is nothing at all objectionable about vagina-face.



  • @Killer-Klown Agreed 100%. To put it bluntly, for a game that previously had a book with a vagina with teeth on the cover, saying that some Brujah might be alt-right or that radical Islamic vampires were involved in Chechnya IMO isn't shocking.



  • @Ghost said in Best (PnP) RPGs of 2018?:

    saying that some Brujah might be alt-right or that radical Islamic vampires were involved in Chechnya IMO isn't shocking.

    Except they weren’t saying that the vampires were involved, they were saying that the suffering wasn’t real and was a front. The people suffering said, “Um...what.”

    I agree that the response hit GamerGate levels of stupid, the same kind of internet bullying that has hit many innocent and undeserving people, but there is a wide difference between Vagina Dentata; and Your Suffering Is Fake; and Here’s a Pedophile to Play, Enjoy!

    I don’t fault White Wolf for trying to push comfort levels, as this is what good horror does. I also don’t blame Paradox for chastising White Wolf for not being able to read a room, especially with all the lead up they had. Nobody did anything catastrophically wrong except hiring Zak S. for anything.


  • Pitcrew

    @Ghost Nevermind there was an entire faction of Werewolves that, by canon, were neo-nazis <and a bunch of vampires who were straight up nazis>.
    Also, oWoD pulled that same kind of thing - although I don't recall them using current events, they did claim supernatural happenings were the reason for a number of historic events <Russian revolution, inquisition; hell, they framed the entire Native American genocides and atrocities within the 'Wyrm' war>

    EDIT - Also, it wasn't just the sociopolitical stuff. I remember someone crying in an article about how much sexual and emotional assault was involved. I was like... uhm. Have you met V:tM?


  • Admin

    I don't care too much for writing with an agenda. But I quite intensely dislike judging writing based on an agenda, too, let alone going out of one's way to damage writing one is somehow offended by by proxy.

    A villain is defined by performing villainous acts. If they happen to not be to your liking then don't buy the product, but this trend of actively campaigning against products - or writers - because of the material itself gives me the creeps. It's no less than organized attempts at censorship.

    There is certainly material that shouldn't see the light of day and that's covered in many countries' hate speech laws.


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel Yeah, exactly. I'm not defending the portrayals or in any way trying to justify them - but, having read the book, I don't think the authors were either. They are horrible events presented as being horrible; because horror is what Vampire has always been about at it's core. Everyone around you is monstrous, and the things that are normalized in Kindred society tear at the human part of your consciousness - and a core tenet of the game is that conflict, the internal question of what you as the PC do in response to that; be it accept and normalize the behavior yourself or continue to fight against it for as long as you can, especially in light of the fact that you have to do at least some of it just to survive? And if you normalize that, how long will it take for you to accept and justify the next step down the ladder?
    Either way, I never got the sense that this sort of thing was glorified in any way except by in-character or in-theme fluff text. Rather they were presented as factors of the world and events/archetypes that might be encountered and ostensibly dealt with. Then again, even back in the day, some people weren't mentally or emotionally sound enough to make that distinction either, so I suppose the complaints aren't that surprising.



  • @Arkandel said in Best (PnP) RPGs of 2018?:

    A villain is defined by performing villainous acts.

    The best villains are defined by how strongly we believed they were the hero.



  • @Arkandel said in Best (PnP) RPGs of 2018?:

    A villain is defined by performing villainous acts. If they happen to not be to your liking then don't buy the product, but this trend of actively campaigning against products - or writers - because of the material itself gives me the creeps. It's no less than organized attempts at censorship.

    Yeah, I get the creeps out of some of the growing social trends going on, most of them seem to be centered around the U.S.

    It is shockingly easy right now to destroy someone's career with an accusation without evidence, diametrically opposed opposition are lobbying for censorship of content they don't like and want unchecked censorship for content that meets their approval, and the growing norm is to try to use social lynch mobs to force businesses to do things they want under duress.

    It's really unnerving to me. A guy I know said that everyone involved with V5 should be (actual quote) skinned alive or at the very least chased out of the industry and blacklisted.

    We really have passed the point of burning actual heretics to creating new definitions of heretic, because people are unwilling to admit that maybe it isn't the heretic that they hate, but the feeling of doing the punishing that drives them.


  • Pitcrew

    It's gotten really bad with the mentality of "I don't like X...X must be destroyed and any involved with it sent to jail or murdered!" My wife and I have a side business where we self-publish Splatterpunk novels. We have since had to start using pseudonyms and we tell NO ONE what our writing names are after people showing up at our house threatening to kill us for...fictional things we wrote. Keeping in mind that we only publish through the Kindle Unlimited Program so though our philosophy is "horror without limit" we have to keep things to a certain level just to keep our stuff published. So it's not like our stories involved the raping of babies or anything. Even so because of some of the stuff we touched on it triggered a small group of people and resulted in one of the most bizarre nights of my life. My point is that these things hit on even very small, personal, scales and it's just bizarre.



  • @ZombieGenesis That just...stinks. Sorry to hear that. Not to take this too much towards the political, but people have been harassed for less (namely Kellie Tran from Star Wars). My favorite "leaving Twitter" response was from Will Poulter after Black Mirror Bandersnatch.

    Regardless, that article in the OP puts my feelings about V5 pretty well at the end: it's the best version of Vampire yet.



  • Oh, I know!

    Lemme drop a few names from people in my neighborhood who had RPGs come out in 2018, on or around, who deserve some notice.

    Tiny D6 (Gallant Knight Games) WEBSITE are some great guys and are making games fast. They've got rules-minimal, RP-high systems and have put out books in post-apocalyptic, fantasy, sci-fi, amd in 2018 their pseudo Baywatch title (BEACH PATROL) got funded. Theyre on DriveThru.

    Happiest Apocalypse on Earth made it to DriveThru in 2018. You can find it here

    I'm also kind of surprised that Legend of the Five Rings isn't getting more attention, too. The newest edition came out in 2018 as well. John Wick is a great guy (not to be confused with Keanu and guns).



  • @Ghost I had someone on the Evennia IRC channel point Tiny D6 out to me a while ago, now I'm using it on the sci-fi game I've been working on. I really like D6 but feel it's too 'heavy' to use in an online game. Tiny D6 is a great compromise.


  • Pitcrew

    My 2 cents worth....

    Kids on Bike: AKA Stranger Things the RPG. Great game that's pretty open =ended in terms of what kind of 80's pre-teen adventure you want to run. E.T, Explorers, Monster Squad, Sigmund & the Sea Monsters are all different influences that can be used as inspirations equally well. Also, the 'Special Character' system is a great narrative RPG mechanic.

    TORG: Eternity Living Land. The TORG revival by Ulysses Spiel continues to be fantastic. They maintain the balance of nostalgia for the original game, fixing balance issues of the original, and making the setting relevant for a playerbase some 20 years removed from the original. The 'Lost Worlds' system is nicely expanded and has an appropriate feel for the Living Land's theme. Lots of new Perks. And great detail on the Edienos tribes, making them into several cultures instead of one homogeneous 'monster race' with the odd heroic outsider among them.


  • Pitcrew

    @Ghost

    The tiny series are so under rated it's sad. I can't wait for tiny supers to come out



  • @BobGoblin Yea and the guys behind the games are great. I'm really rooting for them. When I saw them last (a few months ago) I picked up Tiny Wasteland, which is going to be amazing for Mad Max stuff. I didn't hear anything about Tiny Supers at the time, but since they've made a Tiny game for damn near every genre I wouldn't be surprised to see them do it.


  • Pitcrew

    @Ghost
    It finished Kickstarter in July, supposedly Q2 release aim.



  • @BobGoblin waaaaaaaaaaaat no shit??

    I'm gonna see them again in July so I'll probably get it then.

    One other thing I love about their stuff is that it isn't expensive. I love the smaller books for smaller $ trend versus the gigantic 50-70 dollar book.


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