Good Savage Stuff in the Mail

My book purchases tend to reflect my mood, so you can draw your own conclusions about the two books in the Amazon box about the Eastern Front in World War 2. However, the box did include a third happier item, Savage Worlds Deluxe: Explorer's Edition.

I don't buy a lot of gaming stuff that I do not intend on using, but I am not sure when I will get a chance to play Savage Worlds. This being said, I am liking what I am reading. I am not sure how much time and energy I have for another rules toolkit (a topic for another post), but the tweaking of the rules looks like it would be easy enough.

Anyone (reading this) have actual gaming experience with Savage Worlds? If so, what did you think?


  1. I do have some brief experience with the system. I like where it falls in the "rules heavy/rules light" continuum, with somewhat detailed character generation, but a much lighter, more abstract resolution system.

    Wasn't such a fan of the whole "playing cards for initiative" schtick. Felt gimmicky. Probably felt right and perfect when it was Deadlands, but in a bog-standard fantasy game, not so much.

    The dice mechanic being cooked into the character concept also felt like it just wasn't granular enough, and I can see where it would fall down completely in a high-powered supers game. Add in the "Wild Die" concept, where every Named character gets to roll whatever die he normally would, and a d6, and take the best result, and you get some interesting math. There are a couple situations where it's actually better to have a lower skill and rely on that wild die to bolster your results.

    It honestly plays like a bit like a boardgame that gives you the opportunity to roleplay along with it, not unlike some of the modern, character-driven games I've played in the recent past (A Touch of Evil, most recently). Coming at it from an OSR perspective, I suspect it will feel very detailed in comparison, without sacrificing a good deal of the rulings over rules feel that you're likely used to.

    1. Thanks, Jason, for your comments. They are really helpful.

      It strikes me as similar, but more rules-lite, than Cortex. I had a bit of experience with that system while playing "Supernatural RPG" with my daughter. It seems like it has the tookkit features of GURPS without the lengthy battles. As much as I enjoy the tactical grittiness of GURPS, we play for three hours on a "work night" so at least wanted to check out something that played faster.

    2. Well, the tagline for Savage Worlds is "Fast! Furious! Fun!" so I think you're in the right ballpark for a fast-running system. They're specifically concerned with being able to run large-scale battles on the quick, and if you're willing to sacrifice the level of detail, you get those results.

  2. Our local group of GM's ran a variety of stuff for a couple of years from the release of SW originally. We used it for fantasy, 30's pulp, modern horror, post apocalyptic and a few other things, as well as using a few of the published Plot Point sets.

    I felt like it was a fun game, easy to prep for and easy to run 'off the cuff' if things went sideways from how you had planned. We moved on to other systems, but SW deluxe is actually one of the books I've been perusing lately trying to decide what system I want to use for my next campaign, and it is one of the top runners (BRP/Runequest and Ubiquity being the other 'go to' systems on my shelves)

    You can run it tactically, which the book supports well, but I have ran it completely without miniatures and it has cooperated quite well.

    1. Thanks, Anthony. No one in our group has played it, but it seems like it might scratch an itch we seem to be having. It sounds like you have had a variety of experiences with SW and I appreciate you sharing your experience with me.

  3. We have played a single campaign of Supers using Savage Worlds. The combat was slow, using minis, which the game "encourages". Our only real issue seemed to be the "shaken" mechanic during combat. It was a bit annoying.

    The game offers alot of advantages to the player, through bennies and wild dice. Not a big deal, we suffered through a TPK.

    Running now is a Deadlands campaign, we have shelved the minis, the game runs fine, even I dare say better. I am biased toward non-mini play however.

    Character generation is quick, if you know your character concept, the game encourages and rewards roleplaying a character.

    To be honest, I was a little put off by the Card Deck mechanic, I am over it.

    It fits the Deadlands campaign perfectly, and I recently bought a Doctor Who themed Playing Card Deck for a Savage Doctor Who game.

    Getting a Themed deck for your setting would be the way to go.

    Maybe using "gems" for bennies in a Fantasy Game and then use a Tarot Deck or Fantasy themed Playing Card Deck for a Fantasy Game, it would be a big deal to find.

    The game allows alot of freedom, which is very OSR.

    I give the game 4 out of 5 stars.


    1. The "Deadlands" game sounds very cool. I am also intrigued by "Sundered Skies."