I love tabletop roleplaying games. There is just something about them that can’t be satisfied by any other kind of gaming experience. As a writer, I guess I find them a really rewarding exercise for my imagination and improvisation, as well as a fun way to tell stories without having to do all the work myself. Ultimately, that’s what it’s all about for me, which is why I love very narrative-driven games as opposed to the more combat-orientated simulationist games.
I have to admit, I’m a bit of a game addict. Whilst I don’t play or run nearly as many games as I would like, I do have a penchant for collecting games in the hopes that I’ll play or run them one day. As such, I have a great many books and PDFs of games that I’ve never even played or run at all. I’ve been getting a lot more into playing games online over skype/hangouts, so hopefully I can make use of what little free time I have to change that.
While I’m sure my game collection isn’t nearly as sizeable as some peoples, my list of games currently includes:
Fate (plus a bunch of Fate games including: Dresden Files RPG, Spirit of the Century, Nova Praxis, Diaspora, Bulldogs, Ehdrigohr, Legends of Anglerre, The Demolished Ones)
D&D 3/4/5 (the free release of 5, anyway) + Ptolus + Adventure Time RPG (fan-made 4th Ed remix)
Shadowrun 2⁄4 + plus a crap-ton of source books
GURPs 4th Ed + Transhuman Space
Feng Shui + source books
Call of Cthulu 6th Ed
Genius: the Transgression (unofficial fan-made Storyteller system game)
Stars Without Number + bits
Gumshoe (various things, such as Night’s Black Agents)
Deadlands Classic + bits
Wushu (free, open system)
There are probably other ones that I’ve forgotten about. From the list you’ve notice the majority of them probably fall on the more ‘indy’ end of the spectrum. Out of all of them, I’ve only ever played or run a few, namely:
Dresden Files - run an almost immediately aborted game (we generated a fictional Southampton to play in, sadly never ended up playing in it after that)
D&D 3.0 - played and ran a bunch of games. Hilariously broken system, sort of a guilty pleasure than anything I’d actually consider seriously for running one of my own games nowadays.
D&D 4 - don’t remember running it, but played a few games. Could take it or leave it really.
GURPs - played one game play-by-post on a forum. Tried running a game, didn’t like the system as a GM very much and switched to the WEG Starwars D6 system
Feng Shui - never played (that I can remember), but ran a bunch of games. System sometimes feels a little clunky, mostly due to either me being an idiot when reading the rules or the copy-editing in the books being a little poor.
Wushu - never played, ran one game using the Feng Shui setting, enjoyed it a lot
WEG Starwars D6 - played and ran multiple games, in the Starwars setting and home-brewed ones. West End Games’ D6 system is still one of my favourites in terms of the simplicity and easy of use
Psi-Run - playing a game via play-by-post. Very enjoyable, simple system
Paranoia XP - briefly played one session, don’t think I ever run it as all my usual players are too afraid of letting out my inner sadist! :P
The Strange - it’s only just been released, hoping to run a game today
Numenera - I’ve played a few online games, both play-by-post and over skype. Run a bunch of game sin real life. Really enjoy it from both sides of the GM screen
Fiasco - played in one game of this an really enjoyed it. Not been able to get into another game since.
Microscope - really enjoyed using this as a tool to build a campaign for Numenera. Sadly never played it properly.
Gamma World - ran this a couple of times, enjoyed it. Kind of like Numenera in feel in some ways, though a bit more gonzo.
Shadowrun 4th Ed - ran a few abortive games that never really got off the ground, never played it.
Shadowrun 2nd Ed - played a few times, enjoyed it quite a lot though the sheer about of options and depth to combat sometimes bogged things down a bit.
Don’t Rest Your Head - I love this, ran a few games of it before.
A Penny For Your Thoughts - played this and found it really enjoyable - some of my other players weren’t really convinced though
I’ve also played in a few I don’t yet own, mostly Storyteller games such as Werewolf: The Apocalypse, Vampire: The Masquerade and straight World of Darkness. I’d really love to play Promethean, Changeling, Mage and Genius. Geist looks really interesting too.
Nowadays I find myself drifting towards games that aren’t the typical high-fantasy setting. I like my dystopian cyber punk and urban fantasy, but I’d really like to play a very hard-sci-fi game, which I’ve never really experienced before, having only ever played action-sci-fi games where the science most definitely IS fiction, rather than something a little more gritty and grounded. That said, I wouldn’t mind playing some seriously old-school fantasy adventures using Lamentations of the Flame Princess, which seems pretty much designed to take everything awesome about the original D&D system and distil it through a lens of more modern game-mechanic design aesthetics, cutting away a lot of the cruft.
I was running 2 Numenera games a week, plus playing about 4-5 online games play-by-post, but due to time constraints on both myself and the lives of my players, I’m not playing games nearly as often as I’d like. However, I’m not against running the odd one-shot online for people, if it’s a system I know well like Numenera. Drop me a line if you’re interested in getting a feel for what Numenera is like.