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Re: (TFT) Why not GURPS?

From: Peter von Kleinsmid <pvk@oz.net>

My questions for the list are:

Why do you play TFT and not GURPS?

    I did play GURPS.  I came back to TFT.  Just like many other games.

What aspects of TFT do you prefer?

The best magic system ever written. The only combat system where I can handle 20 players and 30 monters without anyone getting bored, or the whole thing breaking down under complexities, and page flipping while someone looks up a rule. I also love what TFT does to new players after they read the rules for the first time. It actually empowers them. They come to the table with ideas, and confidence. Other game systems don't do this nearly as well. AD&D says "DM will decide" too many times. GURPS has so many source, and world books that even players who have read them all still have to ask "Do you use this book in your campaign," or "are we playing with 'X' optional rule?"

What aspects of GURPS don't you like?

What follows is the confession of a bad GURPS player. [Warning: my examples contain the worst kind of min-maxing]

GURPS lets me wreck the game too easily as a player. Two examples follow. One a fantasy game I played in. It lasted to the first encounter then ended. The second a Space campaign. It lasted two days and then stopped. In both cases because of the characters I made.

I made a guy with rapier, quick draw rapier, and high Dx. All one hundred character points went into this one ability. My character could quick draw and attack in one action at DX 26, doing a critical hit on a 16 or less. None of the GM's NPCs stood a chance.

In a GURPS space game there are a lot of IQ based knowledges and skills. And they all have defaults! So I made a character with IQ 18. Even the most difficult stuff defaulted to an IQ 12. So basically my character could do ANYTHING. I could fly, navigate, operate, reprogram, repair, etc... There was nothing my character couldn't do.

In conclusion my accessment of what is wrong with GURPS is that character design is too flexible. No one can really put 100% of themselves into any one thing. I mean somewhere in their life they are going to have to cook their own meal, or go for a run, or cut wood, or something. To imagine that someone could spend every waking moment doing nothing but ready and strike with a rapier is preposterous. But, as is, GURPS not only allows it, but it puts players who make more well balanced characters at a disadvantage. In a word, GURPS punishes anyone who does not min-max.

  David Michael Grouchy II

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