RPG-a-Day 2018 Day 22: Which non-dice system appeals to you?
There are a lot of good card-based RPG games out there, indie RPGs like Contenders and Piledrivers & Powerbombs are a couple of examples. Each player is dealt a hand of cards and when “conflict” occurs you play cards from the hand to determine the winner, I can’t remember the exact system but I remember thinking it was an interesting mechanic since everyone’s cards would be different and you may have to be strategic with which cards you play when.
I’m not really a fan of diceless systems. I’ve heard a lot of good things about the FATE system, but having watched the Tabletop episode, I wasn’t able to get my head around how it worked. Maybe someday I’ll get a chance to actually play it and see first hand, but I can’t see it happening any time soon.
One non-dice mechanic I have seen used in a few games and have pondered implementing in future game I run is the “flashback” token, where at some point during an adventure/one-off session, you can essentially “flashback” to a point before the adventure to establish some sort of preparation you have done before setting off, for example you arrive at the sewers under the castle you’re infiltrating and quickly get lost, you can “flashback” to bribing a local town clerk to provide you with a map of the sewers, and reach into your bag to retrieve it. It’s a nice way of allowing the players to not have to think of every eventuality when planning so cuts down on time spent plotting, and as long as it’s not ridculously overpowering, it’s fine to “retcon” in something they might have thought of.
Tomorrow is day 23 and I’ll be looking at which game do I hope to play again.
Is there a non-dice system you really like, let me know in the comments below. You can find all the previous RPG-a-Day articles here, you can follow me @bargtheogre on Twitter, or check out the Inside the Ogre’s Cavern podcast at @itocpodcast