I’ve been playing and running tabletop RPGs since about 1991. In that time, I’ve mostly played D&D, though I like to try other systems when they strike my fancy or a good group is running them – the group is far more important to me than the system. Let me see if I can run through a list of all the systems I’ve ran or played a campaign in, in roughly chronological order of when I first played them.
- 2nd Edition D&D. I was a total Forgotten Realms fanboy when I first started gaming, due mostly to my introduction to RPGs being the old Gold Box games on the PC. Later on I enjoyed the Dark Sun setting and a variety of homebrewed settings.
- Alternity. I ran a StarCraft game that lasted a fair while, along with a horror game set in Colonial America that briefly used this system – it’s a setting I’ve used several times in several different game systems.
- GURPS. I played in a fairly long 1920s horror game that ended up bending genres quite a bit. I played a reporter who tended to get himself into trouble a lot. I’ve also ran and played in a fun Fallout game using GURPS, where I played a former Brotherhood of Steel scribe with a penchant for robotics.
- Fading Suns. This is a setting and system I enjoy, but can’t ever seem to come up with a good campaign idea for. I’ve played in two short-lived games that I quite liked, though.
- Deadlands Classic. I’m a big fan of the Deadlands setting – it’s great fun and is good for pulpy action and horror games, which I enjoy. I played and ran several campaigns using this system, though I was never too sold on the damage system – I strongly dislike hit location systems and the Wind system in DL Classic was a pain to use. I usually inject a strong helping of Cthulhu Mythos into Deadlands games I run – I prefer this to the faceless Reckoners or the War/Death/Pestilence/Famine angle.
- Old World of Darkness (Werewolf, mostly, along with occasional Mage elements). I’ve only played short games of this but really liked the backstory for Werewolf.
- 3rd Edition D&D, along with 3.5 when that came out. This was my go-to game for some time, since before it was released – I was cobbling together information from ENWorld and running a game with it as soon as I got together enough information to know I’d like it better than 2e.
- d20 Modern. I ran the Colonial America horror game using this system, as well as playing occasionally when someone else wanted to DM.
- Farscape (the d20 version). One of my good buddies is a huge Farscape fan, and has run short campaigns with this system several times. It was fun sci-fi, even though we wiped ourselves out on the first session in one of those campaigns.
- New World of Darkness. I adapted the mechanics of this run a Dresden Files game for two different gaming groups, both set in post-Katrina New Orleans. One involved a Dagon-worshipping cult trying to call up another hurricane. The other involved discovering and containing a nephilim (half-angel) loose upon the city.
- Champions. A couple in my most stable and long-running gaming group back in Kansas are huge Champions fans, and we have played this a few times as a change of pace from D&D. I’m not a huge supers fan, but we always had a good time because they’re such big fans of the supers genre, and they made it fun.
- Star Wars (I believe the newer version of the d20-based game). We didn’t actually play Star Wars, the GM was using this system for a sort of sci-fi post-apocalyptic game where the Earth was destroyed but its colonies survived and fractured apart.
- 4th Edition D&D. I’ve played this a few times, and wasn’t super enthusiastic about it. I don’t like how much all the classes feel the same. I’ve played a human paladin, a shifter avenger, and a thri-kreen monk. Seems like it would be a really easy game to run, though, which has quite a bit of appeal.
- Pathfinder. I’ve played this for several years now, since shortly after 4e was released. I played several longer campaigns of it in Kansas, and since moving to Alaska have been running Pathfinder Society games pretty regularly. It’s OK; it’s nice to have the work done for me in PFS as a GM, and it gives me a chance to actually play occasionally, which I don’t otherwise get. The system is creaky and overcomplicated for me nowadays, and I don’t like it when I have to write up the opposition – way too much work for me to want to do that.
- Savage Worlds. I’ve been running a Savage Worlds for years now, ever since I discovered it and became a huge fan of the system. As I said before, I’m a big Deadlands fan, and I’ve run two longer Deadlands games now as well as an Iron Kingdoms game. The first Deadlands game was a rough adaptation of the TV show Deadwood; the second was an adaptation of the Call of Cthulhu Masks of Nyarlathotep mega-campaign into a years-long Deadlands game that took the PCs on a world tour in a zeppelin. After moving to Alaska, I put together a group and ran an Iron Kingdoms game using my own conversion of that setting to the Savage Worlds rules.