Hard Sci-fi (like The Expanse) RPG powered by the Apocalypse?

edited March 2017 in Make Stuff!
Has anyone already created a game like that, using AW or similar rules for a hard sci-fi setting?

Comments

  • Uncharted Worlds can be played that way, and I have some friends who played vanilla AW in a gravity-less space environment.
  • Last year, I ran a nine session story arc of Uncharted Worlds where our setting did not have anti-grav. Would totally recommend giving it a look. We had a blast, very flexible.

    Shameless plugs...
    sunday-skypers.podbean.com/category/uncharted-worlds/
    The John Henry
  • I have Uncharted Worlds, but the moves didn't quite work for me. Ship combat especially I'm looking for more detail; the Expanse novels did that well and it seems almost made for AW.
    Zircher I will check out your story arc :)
  • If you're looking for something that emulates The Expanse specifically and with PbtA system, there is no game that will do so without modifications of one sort or another. You would have better luck with more traditional games, like perhaps Deep Space for Cyberpunk 2020, or Transhuman Space and the Deep Beyond expansion, or something along those lines. But even then, they would probably require some changes and tweaks.
  • If you're looking for something that emulates The Expanse specifically and with PbtA system, there is no game that will do so without modifications of one sort or another. You would have better luck with more traditional games, like perhaps Deep Space for Cyberpunk 2020, or Transhuman Space and the Deep Beyond expansion, or something along those lines. But even then, they would probably require some tweaks.
  • Peter, that's what I figured, I have to make it myself :)
  • edited March 2017
    Having never played UW, take that as you will, but UW to me emphasizes exploration more than the intrigue of The Expanse's HEAVY dose of noir. The game is noir at it's core, so maybe hacking a more noir AW hack for space is where you should go. I don't know a Noir AW hack though.

    If UW isn't the direction you want to take, I'd probably build my own: I'd overlay Kevin's Faction system from SWN on top and use that along with WoDu|Breakers and taking out the magic parts. I'd play that for a while until we started developing some hardcoded genre moves.
  • Thanks, but what is SWN and WoDulBreakers?
  • Thanks, but what is SWN and WoDulBreakers?
    SWN is Stars Without Number, an OSR space opera game (and very cool)
    Breakers is World of Dungeons Turbo: Breakers, John Harper's updated take on his ultra-light World of Dungeons.

  • Ooh, I've got to get a copy of Breakers! Thanks for the tip!
  • It's certainly not hard sci-fi, but could easily be hacked for same!
  • It's not PbtA, but I think Diaspora is ready for the Expanse right out of the box. FATE aspects scale really well to worlds with different characteristics, and the hard sci-fi is baked into the default rules.<a
  • Thanks for the suggestion, seasparrow! Unfortunately I've played FATE quite a bit, and now hate it with a passion :-)
  • I love SWN. It can be difficult to understand out of the box but there are videos by Adam Koebel that show the faction system in action. I also think Silent Legions and Red Tide by the same author as SWN are very good complements for the preppers.

    But, PbtA is easy to prep. SWN takes time to prep.
  • edited April 2017
    I loved the expanse. Went and read the first book after I watched the series. Why can't more sci-fi be like this? It doesn't take that much to change your swooping star wars WWII knock off fighter planes to realistic Newtonian maneuvering spacecraft Hollywood!

    Man I wish more people watched this show. Every time I mention it I get "is it on netflix?" Or even worse, "Like Dark Matter?" That show is terrible.

    Anyway, I have been hacking may way toward a sci-fi space pbta, but it sounds like you have some very specific stuff in mind, i.e ship-to-ship combat, hard sci-fi moves, something like:

    When you're injected with a dose of the juice and pull Hard-G to try and outmaneuver your opponent roll +Crack. On a 10+ chose all 3. On a 7-9 choose 2.
    -You get the drop on the other ship (+1 foreword)
    -You don't open yourself up to an attack
    -You don't inadvertently harm your crew

    As far as I know It doesn't exist, but you could add some moves like this on to another pbta and it should work ok. Again depends on what you're going for.
  • I have also been meaning to try JasonT's three page ultra-lite mass effect hack Over Here.

    It would work well if you wanted to go the "Its super lite so I can shove the kind of stuff I want in there" route. Just ignore the biotic stuff and the rest works well. It was partially inspired by the above mentioned Breakers and already has the sci-fi language.
  • Thanks! Yeah those look like good options. I'm currently too flooded with other projects to work on this, but hope to get to it sometime - unless someone beats me to it, which I won't mind at all :)
  • edited April 2017
    For my hack, I originally started with this very idea in mind. Hard sci-fi, gritty world where space travel takes a long time and it would be very grounded. However I soon abandoned such a perspective because I realized in part that what most of the people I know like to do in these games is emulate fiction they seen/read. And as we all know most sci-fi is not hard sci-fi. Upon realizing I might make a game that no one would want to play with me, I sort of went a different direction. This is about the time I made my psychic playbook and never looked back. And seeing the look on my SO's face when she got to play that class was a big clue I went in the right direction.

    I do want to do ship-to-ship stuff, but it won't be heavy tactical combat, just an extension of the normal fiction moves (that's the plan at least). Its sort of next on my list to do. If you do end up making stuff yourself it would be cool to see regardless.

    Anyway good luck!
  • edited April 2017
    Have you heard of Impulse Drive or Infinite Galaxies?
  • Hi yochaigal, no never heard of them; thanks for the links!
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