Castle Falkenstein

From 1d4chan
Big Gay Purple d4.png This article is a skub. You can help 1d4chan by expanding it

It's a magic/steampunk RPG published by R. Talsorian Games. Throw away your dice and grab your deck o' cards as if you were dumb enough to play poker. Also grab your "player as contributory GM" hat, because you will make up almost as much shit as the dude hypothetically in charge. This is mainly due to the odd nature of the system where to achieve anything you would test your skill rating of 2-12 plus cards against a target number. The cards added their face value (or 11 for a jack, 12 for a queen, 13 for a king or 14 for a Ace) if the suit was aligned to the action. Clubs physical, Hearts Charisma, Diamonds perception, Spades social graces. As this meant that the cards were way more important than your characters skill they often determined what your course of action would be so mild mannered librarians holding clubs would be able to out shoot a veteran gunfighter holding hearts.

As you could hold up to 4 cards if you got them you could store a hand to pull off a particular action Just as planned (to the annoyance of everyone else as those cards wouldn't be in circulation). It also led to a near pathological desire in all players to look for any reason to jettison any Spades they held as they were nearly always useless.

The system theoretically lets you play as magicians, fey (many different varieties) and even dragons although the rules that accompanied them varied from stupid to entirely broken.

System quirks aside, astonishing fluff, almost Space: 1889-like in its period genre madness.

Set in a Victorian era where Bismark and his Prussians were out to conquer Europe with their land tanks and Unseelie Fey allies, held back by the air ships and plucky heroes of the German principality of Bayern, while the rest of the great powers mainly bickered and intrigued amongst themselves. RTG produced half a dozen supplements including an ok one on America to expand the setting (all done from the point of view of a time travelling American from the 80s).

For all the many quirks of the system, it was however a pioneering steam punk setting and the very fluid nature of the rules meant it is very easy to integrate almost anything into the story so GMs could plunder any literary source they felt like so games including Sherlock Holmes, HG Wells time machine, War of the Worlds Martians, Frankenstein, Fu Manchu, Phantomas weren't uncommon kind of like playing a game based on Anno Dracula by Kim Newman (Jack Yeovil).

The roleplaying games by R. Talsorian Games
Castle Falkenstein - Cyberpunk 2020 - Cyberpunk v3
Dragon Ball PNP RPG - Mekton
Teenagers From Outer Space - The Witcher RPG