RPGaDay2015, Part 3 (#17)

Category: Cussin' In Tongues
Created on Thursday, 20 August 2015 Written by Steve

Favorite Fantasy RPG

"Fantasy" is a pretty broad category, so I'm going to assume the typical gaming definition of "Sword & Sorcery and/or Elves and Shit." In that case, the best family game I've ever played is the Sword & Sorcery game that the Hex staff plays once every year or two when we can get everyone together. I've written about it here and you can download an actual play recording from the Hex website. Of course, that's a specific campaign, and the question is about my favorite fantasy RPG, which suggests a published setting. 

Hex's entry into the fantasy genre, Qerth, is a product I'm really proud of, but mostly because it's such a perfect satire of fantasy game; it's not really something I actually want to play very often. And, of course, most of that satire comes from years of playing Dungeons & Dragons. My feelings on D&D are complicated. It's the game that got me into the hobby and I spent a lot of time playing (or thinking/reading about playing) D&D and and probably spent thousands of dollars buying D&D books from fourth grade until a few years after I graduated from college. I always wanted to play other games and in college I finally got a chance to play stuff other than D&D regularly, but I always came back to D&D, if only because it was the easiest game to find players for. 

Then at some point I just...I don't know...outgrew D&D. Playing other games and especially writing QAGS opened up so many possibilities for gaming that the idea of running another same-old-same-old D&D game just seemed kind of pointless. Except for a 4th Edition demo and a few sessions of a Pathfinder campaign I joined because it was the only game anyone was playing, I haven't played D&D since at least 1998, maybe earlier. When I started going to a lot of conventions for Hex, it felt like most D&D players were unfailingly emblematic of everything that I hate about gaming and gamers. This added to my disillusionment about D&D while also providing a healthy dose of self-loathing for my younger, D&D-obsessed self. 

Of course, nearly every other (traditional) fantasy game is basically someone's attempt to write a better version of D&D (and usually failing miserably). I've heard some good things about some newer games that focus more on the American sword & sorcery tradition than Tolkien-style fantasy, but haven't had a chance to play any of them. So yeah, I guess D&D is my favorite fantasy game, but there are a lot of caveats and I don't want to join your Forgotten Realms game. 


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RPGaDay2015, Part 3 (#17).
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