September 10

Top 10 RPG list – number 3 Spirit of the Century

Evil Hat Productions

This game is another example of one of my happy accident purchases.  It all stated when I’d heard a lot of good things online about the upcoming Dresden Files RPG and thought that it may be right up the alley of the gaming group and after seeing the short lived television series of the same name I thought I’d give it a try.

It was only when the game arrived did I realise that it required special Fudge dice to play it and that was something I didn’t have so I visited the website of Leusire Games who had sold me the Dresden Files to see if they had the dice I needed.

As it happens they did have a set of dice, the Fudge Gamesmasters pack which had several sets of dice within and I looked for another game that used them that’s when I saw Spirit of the Century.

I decided to do a little reading on this game and the more I read about it the more I fell in love with it, the whole era of the 1920s which I was a fan of excited me more and more. On top of that it was a pulp genre game, although some critics claim it is a very specific pulp world.

The FATE system is built upon the very flexible but often overlooked FUDGE RPG, which I think is a crying shame.  FUDGE gives you a complete toolkit to make your own game but there is a lot of work involved in setting it up; FATE is FUDGE with some extra house-rules grafted to it.

Character creation is quite easy, just answer a few questions, come up with ties to the other characters, pick skills and stunts and away you go.

Since the release of this excellent game FATE has undergone an evolutionary step going beyond the version here and The Dresden Files into something a little more streamlined. I’m looking forward to seeing the revised Spirit of the Century set in the 1980s when the Evil Hat crew are finished with it.

Honourable mention.

There are a number of pulp themed games on the market and I have several of them which makes picking a runner up hard to do.

Thrilling Tales

Adamant Entertainment

Using the popular Savage Worlds game engine this reasonably priced pulp game has a lot going for it, especially the plot point campaign in the book and the background information on nefarious villains for the PCs to battle.  I’ve never run it just mined it for the background information.


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Posted September 10, 2014 by GeneralTangent in category "pulp", "RPG

About the Author

I've been gaming on and off since about 1989 and during that period have played with numerous game systems. I'm fluent in a few, have a basic understanding of quite a few more and can get by in others. Somewhere along the way I found time to be a playtester, contribute to an unpublished game supplement and be associated with another gaming magazine written by far more talented people than I. This lead to one infamous article being written in which I followed the letter of the adventure and torched the parties river barge. I'm also listed on as a game designer.

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