Lacking Natural Simplicity

Random musings on books, code, and tabletop games.

GURPS vs. D&D vs. Dungeon Fantasy RPG

After I played D&D for a while at the beginning of my RPG career I found out that I was interested in other games. T&T, then DragonQuest, RuneQuest, GURPS, and Elric! and many more since then. Eventually one of the things I figured out was that I was looking for the different flavors that different RPG systems give the games you play with them. D&D has a very specific flavor. Elric! has a very specific but different flavor. Some of that flavor comes from the systems and some of that flavor comes from the setting. But the D&D systems flavor seems to overpower the setting flavor. (You could say that the “implied setting elements” from the D&D core rules have heavily flavor any D&D setting.)

The Dungeon Fantasy RPG is GURPS specialized for powerful characters plundering dungeons, and because of that it adopts some (but not all) of the cliches from D&D (druids, monks, clerics, etc), and puts its own spin on them. But one of the things I liked about GURPS was that it didn't have the same set of cliches as D&D. Oh well.

Despite looking for the different flavors that systems imbue, I still like generic RPGs like GURPS and Savage Worlds and Basic Roleplaying. I like the flavor that those systems give, and I like seeing how that interacts with the flavor of the setting.

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