Cyberpunk by R. Talsorian. I remember the day I walked into the Captain Quebec store on Ste. Catherine street and saw this black box sitting there. I had no idea what it or Cyberpunk was. I picked it up, read the back and paid my $15 for it (which is what I remember it costing) and then went on to run a campaign in Night City that lasted for years. Cyberpunk was the game that taught me it is okay to go on a murderous rampage vs. your players. In every other game I run, I run it for my players, but Cyberpunk I run for me. Don't get attached to your characters, that's all I am saying. Even when they made the move to the 2020 rules, which I wasn't as much of a fan of, I still ran game after game. Good times.
Star Wars by West End Games was that game. I really liked how the system worked and was enough of a fan of Star Wars that I enjoyed myself when I did get to run it. Which wasn't nearly often enough. It wasn't for lack of desire, but you have to understand Star Wars fans have a weird reaction to you messing with their perceptions of what the Star Wars Universe is, and given this was really just when the Expanded Universe was starting to get traction, my views on Star Wars were not always in line with the players, which could lead to them really not enjoying it. Some really did, in fact there is one player (Hi John!) that still talks about my Celestine Station game. That was a lot of fun.
So what is this all about you ask. Why am I waxing poetic about an out of print game? Well let me tell you why, and I think you might enjoy it.
Star Trek roleplaying game called Prime Directive by Task Force Games. Now I had played enough FASA-Trek to have a soft spot for Trek roleplaying, so I picked it up (Trivia: I got into both roleplaying and Star Trek through FASA-Trek, not D&D or being a Trekkie). There were a lot of things to like about this game. The system was unique and innovative. The setting, while way more militaristic than normal Star Trek, called back to the original series days more so than the Next Generation that I despised. It was a fun game that I could use a random adventure generator with and have a blast every time. I ran two or three campaigns using it and eventually moved on. Then in 1998 something happened that defined gaming for me moving forward.
Mini-Six rules by AntiPaladin Games. It seemed that after going bankrupt or something, West End Games had decided to do an OGL style thing with the D6 system and the lads at AntiPaladin saw a chance to make a fast-play, rules-lite version of the D6 system and it worked wonders! I really liked it and regret I wasn't able to get one of their hard-copies at the time and now await when they eventually do another print run.
This is why I like the D6 system or say Savage Worlds or the Unisystem, or pretty much any other generic system out there. It isn't perfect, not by a long shot, but is has a LOT less fiddly bits (unless you want to add them) and it can do ANY genre and do it well. Why, cause it is all based around a very solid core-mechanic. Grab a bunch of d6s, roll them, add them up and compare to a target number. End of story. Nothing more complicated than that.
DC Universe game they put out in the late 90's. I will admit it was an incoherent mess and desperately needed a second edition (though apparently they fixed a lot of it with subsequent books) that it would never get due to the fact that WEG went tit's-up not longer after they released it.
There is a product called D6 Powers that everyone raves about being the ultimate fix for the D6 superhero option. It's not bad, I guess, but the one thing it does that I think DC Universe did better is how you buy and rate powers. In D6 Powers everything is a point buy and there are ranks for powers. Whereas, DC Universe maintained the idea of a D6 pool all the way through, so you bought your powers with dice and they were rated in dice. A minor quibble, I know, but that's how my mind works. I want everything to be consistent and my OCD will compel me to obsess over these things until my mind pops. As such I just can't get into D6 Powers, even though I know it is a quality product.
I want there to be multiple types of spell casting in my world. Spellbinders who learn spells and reproduce them like recipes Sorcerers who draw on the very energy of magic to so what they want on a whim (think like the Will & the Word from the Belgariad) and Channellers who must bargain with powerful beings to gain their magic?
I can do all that in D6 without having to reinvent the wheel!
I don't like classes, but a player does? Easy, either build your character from scratch or take a template.
Simple, fast, easy.
Everything I could ever want is in that one simple book, because it tells me to make it the way I want it, provides some guidelines and examples, and lets the rest up to me.
Thanks for taking the time to read this and if just one of you gives D6 a chance and is a convert like I am, then it was all worth it.