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Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD



What the hell is Gamma World?
Gamma World is a post apocalyptic roleplaying game first published by TSR in 1978, boasting seven (7!) editions of weird wasteland and strange Badger-Men. In its latest incarnation, Gamma World is a game based on 4th Edition D&D rules, though heavily stripped down and simplified.

"In the fall of 2012, scientists at the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, Switzerland, embarked on a new series of high-energy experiments. No one knows exactly what they were attempting to do, but a little after 3 P.M. on a Thursday afternoon came the Big Mistake. Something unexpected happened, and in the blink of an eye, many possible universes all condensed into a single reality." - Gamma World rulebook, Richard Baker, Bruce R. Cordell

Gamma World has taken many stances on the apocalypse that happened long, long ago, but all that really matters is: It Happened. The world is now a wasteland, a cruel mockery of what stood before. This land is no longer earth. This land is Gamma Terra.

Why would I want to play this?
Because you like:
  • Tactical combat in the style of D&D 4e
  • Tongue in cheek humor
  • Post apocalyptic settings
  • The idea of being a sentient swarm of rats
  • Badgers
  • Laser guns
  • Bullshitting with friends
Because you dislike:
  • Rules heavy systems
  • Trap character options
  • Standard fantasy RPGs
  • Modifiers for every-loving-thing
  • D&D Standard Feat BloatTM
  • Badgers
  • Tedious combat


Badgers are serious business


What system does it use?
Gamma World uses a simplified stripped down version of Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition, meaning that almost all parts of it are compatible with standard 4e, but is different enough to not suffer the same shortcomings.

The resolution system is as follows: d20+level+ability mod. That's it. No half levels, no fiddly modifiers, just your level and the appropriate ability added to your roll. Gone are the weapon proficiencies, the bloated feat tables, the "cool-in-concept, not in play" characters. All GW characters are competent right out of the box, and have awesome ridiculous powers, as well as ludicrously powerful old world tech.


Your players will literally kill for this


How is this different from 4e?
GW is different in quite a few ways, which I will outline below.
  • Character creation is random. You roll a d20 to determine your character origins. You get two origins, a primary and a secondary.
  • Ability scores are tied to origins. Each origin has an associated ability tied to it. You get an 18 to the ability associated with your first origin, and a 16 in the ability associated with your second. (For example, You roll Electokinetic (WIS) as your primary, and Plant (CON) as your secondary origins. You would then have an automatic 18 in Wisdom and a 16 in Constitution.) If both of your origins have the same ability, you get a 20 in that ability. All other ability scores are rolled 3d6, down the line. Don't like it? Cry to your DM.
  • Modifier math is adjusted to d20+level+ability mod, meaning your attack, damage, defense, skill, and initiative mods all increase each level, rather than every other.
  • Weapons use the better of your STR/CON or the better of your DEX/INT, meaning your high INT character isn't gimped with basic attacks.
  • Weapons are generic templates. In the book they are described as "Light Two-Handed Melee" or "Heavy One-Handed Ranged" and it's encouraged to have the player flavor them as desired. One of my characters "Light One-Handed Ranged" weapons is a microchip thrown like a throwing star, while her "Light One-Handed Melee" weapon is a flail made of CAT-5 cables (Cat-o-five-tails).
  • There are no Daily powers, and access to Encounter powers are limited to higher levels. Each origin comes with an At-Will attack power, using the same ability as associated with the origin. In place of Encounters and Dailies are...
  • Alpha Mutations & Omega Tech. These two types of cards come with the box set and functionally fill a few different roles. Alpha Mutations are strange powers that the PCs can make use of by tapping into the diverse worldlines of Gamma Terra. Mechanically, they fill the role of Encounter powers, as they are drawn fresh at the beginning of each encounter, and discarded (used or not) at the end. Omega Tech are ridiculously powerful pieces of old world tech that can unleash devastation at the push of a button. Mechanically, they fill the role of both Magic Items and Daily powers. If a PC used their Omega Tech in an encounter, they check the charge at the end. If they roll a 10+ (on a d20) the item keeps its charge and can be used again. If they roll 9 or less, it is discarded to the smoking heaps. Some pieces can be salvaged though...
  • Guns. Yeah, Gamma Terra has guns. Guns come in the same flavors as other weapons (Light, Heavy; One-Handed, Two-Handed) but are more accurate, have greater range, and do more damage. The drawback is the need for ammo. Gamma World resolves ammunition in this manner: If you use a gun more than once an encounter, you might as well keep firing, because you'll be out of ammo after the fight. If you only fire once per fight, you always have ammo. That's it. No tracking bullets shot by shot. (If you want to force realism on it, it kinda makes sense. Most fights don't ever last more than 5 rounds (30 seconds), and if you fire five times in thirty seconds, you're being amazingly reckless with your ammo.)
  • There is very little healing. Gamma Terra is a deadly and terrifying place (when it's not painted in clown makeup and slapping you in the face) and heroes have a high mortality rate. The Second Wind is still here, but gone are Healing surges. Each second wind heals you your bloodied value, and few origins have the ability to heal during combat. If you manage to survive a fight, you'll be happy to know your HP goes back to max.
  • Death is commonplace, and character death moreso. Because of the aforementioned lack of healing, combat is a very dangerous endeavor. Worry not! It only takes a few minutes to roll a new character while your DM chuckles to themselves.
  • The rules only support play up until level 10. There are resources available for those DMs not merciless enough to kill their characters, though.


There were no Space Suits in 4e


Ok, I'm sold. What do I need to get started?
Luckily for everyone who's ever picked up a d20, Gamma World is made in a box set, and can be found for relatively cheap ($30) at most local game stores. The box contains
  • The Gamma World rulebook. Everything you need to play, complete with bestiary and an adventure.
  • Gridded terrain maps. These things are beautiful and covered in radioactive waste. Not as large as published D&D maps, but their uniqueness makes them stand apart.
  • Sheets of tokens. There are tokens for every monster, as well as character tokens, done up in the standard 4e token style. Be aware that the monster tokens are double sided, while the character tokens have the same image on each side with a ring to indicated Bloodied.
  • A deck of Alpha Mutation and Omega Tech cards. All the crazy crap you'll ever need to play.
  • A booster set of random Alpha Mutation and Omega Tech cards. These are done in the same style as Magic: the Gathering boosters, with 10 cards (5 alpha 5 omega) per pack. You can always try to buy more, but remember this: YOU DO NOT NEED BOOSTERS TO PLAY.

There are also two expansion sets released, Famine in Far-Go and The Legion of Gold. Both of these take modules from earlier editions of Gamma World and update the data for use with modern GW.
Famine in Far-Go is an adventure for characters level 3-7, and also comes with twenty new origins, a bunch of monsters, new token sheets, as well as Cryptic Alliance cards, a handy story telling device that can also be used for mechanical advantage.
The Legion of Gold is an adventure for characters level 7-10, and brings much to the table, though there are fewer new origins (only 8). Rules for riding and mounted combat, as well as Background Feats are included in this book, and it also has the previously mentioned origins as well as unique monsters. Two sheets of tokens are included, as are some brand new Alpha & Omega cards.


Now I'm hooked! What other stuff is available?
Wizards of the Coast made a Character Generator available for free (use the link at the bottom of that page). This allows you to roll a brand new character at the click of a mouse, using one, both or none of the expansions. This is also a great Character sheet, as it includes a full skill list. Just select "Blank Sheet" on the side and print to your heart's content.
Dazed (save ends) has a bunch of stuff available on his blog, including adventures, new origins, the above mentioned level 11+ rules, vehicle rules, new monsters... the list goes on. These people put some serious love into this game and compiled a great resource for all you players and GW GMs.

You can always discuss Gamma World hacks, mods, and reskins right here in this thread. If you ask nicely, maybe I'll even throw up a link for using D&D races and classes within the Gamma World ruleset.

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that ostrich
Jul 18, 2005

Don't worry, I'm a Media Technician Lead. This shit is on LOCKDOWN.


Gamma World is pretty fun, but my group and I found it to be a little too shallow for our tastes. It's great for a one-shot or a game that'll go on for just a few sessions, but anything more than that just left us wishing that there was more depth or options in character advancement. Character creation is really a blast, though, and rolling for starting equipment is absolutely hilarious.

That being said, I'd love to hear any ideas people have come up with for keeping the game interesting. Maybe my group was just doing it wrong?

Bieeardo
Aug 21, 2000

Someone bold, someone blue, someone borrowed, someone new...


I'm still not sure what they were thinking when they tried to revive the booster packs for RPGs thing that flamed out so greasily during the big CCG boom. Gamma World was going to be a niche enough game that no retailer would have seriously bothered ordering a box of boosters. The gimmick was interesting, basically drafting the powers and tech that fit your play style, something like a randomized version of the magic item wish list that some 4E groups use.

My gaming groups have always tended toward long-term play with lots of power inflation, but my impression of the 4E game is one of one-shots and short campaigns with fire-and-forget character generation... and that's great! It does make me wonder why they spent so much time on the Cryptic Alliances in Legion of Gold, but I suspect that's equal parts call back to earlier editions and part of the inventory of optional rules.

Unfortunately, being based on 4E, stock Gamma World is stuck with its wretched skill challenge system. While everything else has been trimmed down and streamlined to both make games play quicker and the text fit neatly in the roughly paperback sized rules booklets, it remains as turgid and awkward as it ever was.

Ryuujin
Sep 26, 2007
Dragon God

I wish they had put out more stuff for Gamma World. Heck I wish people would post more Gamma World recruits.

Upmarket Mango
May 21, 2011

I've got a cure for bitch, Barbara, and you're begging for a taste of it.


I have never played Gamma World or really even looked into it but thanks to this thread (great OP, btw) I am definitely interested in it. I much prefer post-apocalyptic/sci-fi/anything over fantasy to be honest and streamlined, rules-light systems are my preferred way of playing (Savage Worlds is my favorite) so this definitely seems right up my alley. Honestly I have no idea why I haven't looked into this before.

Pangalin
Aug 11, 2007

Grown men are talking.

that ostrich posted:

That being said, I'd love to hear any ideas people have come up with for keeping the game interesting. Maybe my group was just doing it wrong?

Well, if the main draw of RPGs for your group is complex character advancement, I'd go so far as to say that Gamma World is Not For You. It's pretty explicitly a game where you're not meant to get attached to your characters at all, let alone plotting out the ideal feat path for their next 20 levels.

(In the same vein, I would argue that anyone using a Skill Challenge in GW is Doing It Wrong. Solving something non-violently in Gamma World seems counter to the spirit of the thing.)

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

that ostrich posted:

Gamma World is pretty fun, but my group and I found it to be a little too shallow for our tastes. It's great for a one-shot or a game that'll go on for just a few sessions, but anything more than that just left us wishing that there was more depth or options in character advancement. Character creation is really a blast, though, and rolling for starting equipment is absolutely hilarious.

That being said, I'd love to hear any ideas people have come up with for keeping the game interesting. Maybe my group was just doing it wrong?

The Legion of Gold may hold something for you then. It introduced a series of feat trees for backgrounds (like bounty hunter and medic) that allow both mechanical advantage as well as story advancement. You get more feats in the tree you chose as you progress in level. It allows for more character customization and a little more depth. It doesn't fix all the problems though. I'd recommend taking a look at Dazed (save ends) blog, there's a bunch of stuff there to tweak your game.

As far as the standard 4e skill challenge quagmire, I'd highly recommend using something like 13th Age's backgrounds system. Have your characters make up a background loosely associated with their origin skills, like a +Science character could get the background "can hack anything". Never use a binary pass/fail, and just ignore the skill challenge system.

I'd love to hear any other tweaks or fixes that you guys have used.

ElegantFugue
Jun 5, 2012



Thank you for the writeup! One of my gaming group's players ran us through a game of this a while back. I had a great time, but didn't have any clue where to start as far as looking deeper into the system. Sounds like it's pretty straightforward (i.e. with the intro box).

Captain Walker
Apr 7, 2009

Mother knows best
Listen to your mother
It's a scary world out there


This is a Good OP. I wish I wasn't so poo poo at making friends who play elfgames or I'd run this. I've only ever seen one PbP and it fizzled midway through the first combat.

Ryuujin
Sep 26, 2007
Dragon God

There is one PbP that has been running for a year, or two, and is still going. But yeah I wish more people would run it on the forums.

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

I'll probably start up a roll20 game of multiple one-shots to give everybody a taste of what's going on, but I'd need a little bit to make sure everything's all together. I've gotta scan maps, scan cards, and all that jazz. I've also been looking for people willing to playtest the D&D port I mentioned at the end of the OP. These things will all come about, in due time. I've got a real life GW game going on right now, so that gets the most of my attention.

E: And thanks for all the compliments on the OP, it means a lot to hear it.

Lord Frisk fucked around with this message at Jul 13, 2013 around 05:09

Captain Walker
Apr 7, 2009

Mother knows best
Listen to your mother
It's a scary world out there


Lord Frisk posted:

I'll probably start up a roll20 game of multiple one-shots to give everybody a taste of what's going on, but I'd need a little bit to make sure everything's all together. I've gotta scan maps, scan cards, and all that jazz. I've also been looking for people willing to playtest the D&D port I mentioned at the end of the OP. These things will all come about, in due time. I've got a real life GW game going on right now, so that gets the most of my attention.

E: And thanks for all the compliments on the OP, it means a lot to hear it.

I might be able to help, shoot me a gmail at pika132

Cactrot
Jan 11, 2001

Go Go Cactus Fist

Lord Frisk posted:

I'll probably start up a roll20 game of multiple one-shots to give everybody a taste of what's going on,

I would totally be up for this, I really want to play Gamma world but my regular group doesn't really care for it.

Captain Walker
Apr 7, 2009

Mother knows best
Listen to your mother
It's a scary world out there


Same here! Goddamn I love gamma world. Your fantasy races and classes are p. cool too!

Nemesis Of Moles
Jul 25, 2007


Well, instead of buying a new pair of shoes, I bought a copy of Gamma World. Thanks jerk

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

I don't even feel bad. Roll 1d4 times on the starting gear table and you might get rocket boots.

I will be getting the roll20 game together some time within the next week. Right now I'm drowning in a sea of Powerpoint slides and scientific posters

If anybody wants to claim a spot in the GW roll20 game, shoot me an email at lordfrisksa@gmail and I'll hit you up with details when I can.

Captain Walker
Apr 7, 2009

Mother knows best
Listen to your mother
It's a scary world out there


What's the best way to get those ridiculous cards? FLGS?

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

It's worth a shot, but honestly they haven't been in print since 2010. eBay and amazon are your safest bets, but they're going for upwards of $7 a pack. It's kind of ridiculous. As an obsessive purchaser of nerd items, I can safely say that its an extra you can do without. The base deck should hold enough craziness for most groups.

Bieeardo
Aug 21, 2000

Someone bold, someone blue, someone borrowed, someone new...


Wow, even the rulebook says you'll be fine with the stock deck. Sure it says that on what's basically a full-page ad for boosters, but still!

If you really want more cards, you can always sleeve the core ones with blank paper backs, and proxy your own. I came across a Doctor Who-inspired batch of fan-made cards, so there are probably more kicking around out there too.

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

Yeah, I've taken to making up my own pieces of old world tech for home games. I usually just write them on note cards and hand them out in place of omega tech. I let them keep them like a magic item instead of checking the charge like omegas, but I've made them a bit more valuable (by giving my players nothing for one encounter except 'random junk' and on the next giving them my homebrewed awesome tech).

Not having the option to lose this stuff has made my players a bit more durable than standard characters of their level, but that just gives me more leeway as a GM to punish them in combat.

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.


Bieeardo posted:

My gaming groups have always tended toward long-term play with lots of power inflation, but my impression of the 4E game is one of one-shots and short campaigns with fire-and-forget character generation... and that's great! It does make me wonder why they spent so much time on the Cryptic Alliances in Legion of Gold, but I suspect that's equal parts call back to earlier editions and part of the inventory of optional rules.

If you want a more long term and serious version of the game, you should look into the 4th edition from 1992. It has a broad spread of character options, huge room for character and campaign development, a fairly large line of supplements and decent rules in the form of a sort of proto-D20.

That said, with the two expansions and some house rules, the current edition can make a fine system for a long campaign.

Ryuujin
Sep 26, 2007
Dragon God

So yeah I am thinking of running a short adventure on the Forums, using the Christmas themed adventure that was released some time ago. Just thought I would let people in here know in case they were interested.

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

Well, now that scientific Hell Week is over, I will finally be running through some one shots. I will probably stick to the published adventures out of the book, as I want to do a by-the-numbers run through so everyone can see exactly what the game consists of. That means if there are skill challenges, I will be running them as printed *shudder*. I know a few of you have already secured your spot in the game, but this is a heads up to anyone else who's interested to check the recruitment thread for gamma world. I see Ryuujin is doing a PBP, which is excellent, and I encourage anyone who wants to get into a game to apply for his.

That said, keep your eyes peeled for a post on the imminence of our introductory play-through.

Bieeardo
Aug 21, 2000

Someone bold, someone blue, someone borrowed, someone new...


PeterWeller posted:

If you want a more long term and serious version of the game, you should look into the 4th edition from 1992. It has a broad spread of character options, huge room for character and campaign development, a fairly large line of supplements and decent rules in the form of a sort of proto-D20.

Actually, I find the beer and pretzels, short advancement table approach refreshing.

I do find it fascinating how the game has changed from edition to edition. A friend had what I think was a first edition box, back when there were three or four different sorts of power cells, and Death Machines roamed the wastes with one-shot-kill Black Ray beams, the only mutant plants were wildlife, and figuring out old tech involved a decision tree that was scarier looking than the one from Expedition to the Barrier Peaks.

There's a copy of the core book for what I think is 4th Edition around here somewhere. I remember it had a rising Armor Class (which was a forehead-slapping moment when I first saw the THAC table), and a surprising array of shiny old tech lavished with technobabble, but no Black Rays or Tarrasque-caliber Death Machines. It was still cool, character creation seemed a lot smoother, and the rules for acquiring mutations during adventures were amusingly intriguing.

I really like this new edition, partly because it's even easier to roll up a character, and you really don't have to worry about statting out mutations for individual monsters. I think I mentioned before, but I feel kind of weird about how the old Cryptic Alliances were added in-- they seemed like a major influence in earlier editions, with groups like the Bonapartists or the Purists being downright scary; there isn't really much room given to them this time around, and with Gamma Terra being a much sandboxier setting they don't offer the same sense of urgency. They feel more like Fallout's regional bandit tribes and rad cults than major threats. Or maybe I misunderstood them the first time.

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.


Bieeardo posted:

Actually, I find the beer and pretzels, short advancement table approach refreshing.

I do find it fascinating how the game has changed from edition to edition. A friend had what I think was a first edition box, back when there were three or four different sorts of power cells, and Death Machines roamed the wastes with one-shot-kill Black Ray beams, the only mutant plants were wildlife, and figuring out old tech involved a decision tree that was scarier looking than the one from Expedition to the Barrier Peaks.

There's a copy of the core book for what I think is 4th Edition around here somewhere. I remember it had a rising Armor Class (which was a forehead-slapping moment when I first saw the THAC table), and a surprising array of shiny old tech lavished with technobabble, but no Black Rays or Tarrasque-caliber Death Machines. It was still cool, character creation seemed a lot smoother, and the rules for acquiring mutations during adventures were amusingly intriguing.

I really like this new edition, partly because it's even easier to roll up a character, and you really don't have to worry about statting out mutations for individual monsters. I think I mentioned before, but I feel kind of weird about how the old Cryptic Alliances were added in-- they seemed like a major influence in earlier editions, with groups like the Bonapartists or the Purists being downright scary; there isn't really much room given to them this time around, and with Gamma Terra being a much sandboxier setting they don't offer the same sense of urgency. They feel more like Fallout's regional bandit tribes and rad cults than major threats. Or maybe I misunderstood them the first time.

Yeah, 4E is the one with THAC and ascending AC. It also has really nasty black rays that do direct Con damage or something like that, and roaming death machines as well as the power armored suits with which you can fight them were added in supplements.

I think you're right about the Cryptic Alliances. This edition just doesn't have the (re)building focus that a lot of the others did, so the Alliances lose their political significance. Along those lines, I think it would be cool to tack 2E's advancement rules where the players leveled up their settlement instead of their characters on to the latest edition's rules for adventuring and advancement.

Bieeardo
Aug 21, 2000

Someone bold, someone blue, someone borrowed, someone new...


Ah, that's it! Clearly, my memory isn't what it's been. And now I'm disappointed that I never saw any of the other 4E stuff for sale around here.

Rebuilding-- that's precisely the tone I've been groping for, trying to compare the new game with the older editions. There's a sense of the characters being adventurers because... they're adventurers, and not because they've just passed their rites of adulthood in 1982's version of Far-Go and their home needs a not-GECK to survive.

Some sort of settlement advancement system would definitely be neat. There's nothing wrong with one-shots and short campaigns, but giving the characters somewhere to hang their hats and a kind of shared character for the players to get attached to, that you could threaten with the machinations of Cryptic Alliances or the inexorable plod of an Ancient highway-paving machine would be... intriguing.

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

I'd love it if someone with the resources could manage to run an older edition of Gamma World, they had so much innovation in the systems. It seemed kind of like TSR would do a troubleshoot test run with Gamma World before implementing changes to D&D. I'm not gonna hold my breath though.

John Q. Sixpublic
Oct 7, 2008


Whenever I have the need to run a one-shot game for a visiting out-of-towner or a group on non-committal players, I have had luck with Gamma World. Given it's 'out-of-the-box' playability and more lighthearted lore, it's great for just cutting loose with some imaginative setting and player characters in a somewhat disposable way.

I always start with the basic description of the setting ('saturday-morning-cartoon postapocalyptic quantum-mechanical adventure'), then let people read through the list of origins. Once they latch onto a few that sound appealing (rat-swarm always seems to be popular) we just random up some PCs from the WOTC website, ensuring that no two players have any shared origins.

The one twist that I reserve is that I always overlay some kind of gimmick onto the setting, to aid in loosening the atmosphere. While some people enjoy heavy role-playing and melodrama and that's fine for certain games, personally Gamma World works best with a more lighthearted and comedic tone. So I'll run the game with some gimmick. In one game, everybody made 'wild-west' characters, with desperados and sheriffs and cowboy tropes filling the world, in addition to being radioactive mutants with alien technology and reality-warping trans-dimensional powers. Or everyone is a computerized digital sprite, in a virtual net-based world running on some cosmic computer server, with internet pirates and security firewalls overlaying the cast of characters. The most recent game featured character in radioactive mutant high-school, with cheerleaders and jocks and nerds being the stock characters.

Employing these kinds of gimmicky setting constraints helps the players use stock character stereotypes to inform their character, augmented by the actual mutant powers they have, and also helps to soften the tone. This works well for one-shots, since simple characters have simpler motivations and everybody gets a good laugh about communally building up exaggerated personas and then seeing them subverted organically as the game goes on. Kinda the Team Fortress 2 or Dota theory of character design where you start with a two-word gimmick (texan engineer, skeleton king) and then make all the character's jokey attributes flow from that.

Cassa
Jan 29, 2009


Alright, so I threw my hand up to run this at my local shop, after having the base set for about a year, and friends who aren't excited by the concept, so yay to finally getting to play it!

I have a simple question for picking of origins.

How to do it and not take 40 minutes? I've only got one copy of the book, so should I photocopy all the origins and let people roll up based on the name only?

Bieeardo
Aug 21, 2000

Someone bold, someone blue, someone borrowed, someone new...


Photocopy the origins so you can pass 'em around, or just jot up a short stack of sheets yourself and hand 'em out. The link to the character generator in the first post still works too.

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

I usually go around the table and have everyone roll primaries and secondaries first, and get their stats down. I tell everyone how to make basic attacks. I don't explain their powers to them until their first fight (if they're new to D&D) and have them write it down on notecards. All you need is +Attack vs. Def
Hit: damage.

Fights take a minute to learn anyway, and it keeps character creation from being too front heavy. I think it also helps to let the players use it when they first learn it so they get a feel for their abilities.

Really though, as the DM, you're expected to be more familiar with it, and that usually means just knowing which page to open to. Use page flags for origins and stuff so you can quick reference stuff. Keeps the players out of books and the game moving.

Cassa
Jan 29, 2009


You both make excellent points, thanks for the advice.

Relatedly, is the monster 'math' fine as is? I know some of d&d4 was a bit iffy out of the box.

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

Yeah, it's all MM3 math. You can use any D&D monsters that follow the same set up, and really any monsters if you don't mind tweaking the numbers. All GW monsters are heavy hitters with slightly lower defenses ala MM3 math.

Lord Frisk
Dec 27, 2012
IRL DEBUFFED KOBOLD

If youre looking for monsters to use, I'd recommend the Dark Sun Creature Catalogue. They're far enough away from standard fantasy monsters to not be instantly recognizable, as well as having cool psionic powers. They also use MM3 math.

Cassa
Jan 29, 2009


Ooh, I do like cool psionic powers. I'll have to reup my insider sub and browse them. For the moment I'm happy to run things straight from the box.

But if this takes off, like I hope it will, definitely will throw some in.

Qwo
Sep 27, 2011


Aha! I don't know how I missed this thread. I've been trying to convert Gamma World to Fate (with a focus on the high-random 7E stuff), so I've been diving pretty hard into every old edition and offshoot. Metamorphosis Alpha is bizarre and soo oooolddd, Mutant Future is more wonderfully goofball than most of the older Gamma World editions, and 5E is so 1999 it hurts. I think the only Gamma World-like I haven't touched so far is Darwin's World because it seems like 5E with the serious-o-meter dialed to 100. No thanks.

The ongoing Midwestern Marauders is a pretty good read.

Suicide Sam E.
Jun 30, 2013

Y, ea h I'm a fuck-tard.

So be it.


I love Gamma World. I have only ever read about it, never been in a campaign, never made a character. As a child I did read a bunch of the 'Choose Your Own' style books set in Gamma World.

Also, I am one of the few people who have beaten "Alphaman" by Jeffrey R. Olson (although it is chock full of creativity and Gamma World, you will hate it if you hate Roguelikes).

Bieeardo
Aug 21, 2000

Someone bold, someone blue, someone borrowed, someone new...


Man, I loved Alphaman. Could never beat it, even cheating shamelessly, but loved it all the same.

Suicide Sam E.
Jun 30, 2013

Y, ea h I'm a fuck-tard.

So be it.


Bieeardo posted:

Man, I loved Alphaman. Could never beat it, even cheating shamelessly, but loved it all the same.

How far did you manage to get? Elvis? The Addams Family? The Castaways?

Don't feel bad about not beating it. It was tough as heck. Plus it combined the random deaths of Gamma World with the deaths of randomly-generated Rogue-likes.

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Bieeardo
Aug 21, 2000

Someone bold, someone blue, someone borrowed, someone new...


I made it to Elvis; the impersonators were tough bastards. I think I skipped past some necessary information by accident after that, because I remember getting stuck and not going much further.

I remember reading a couple of the Gamma World Endless Quest books, too; got Light on Quests Mountain at the school bazaar one year. It's still floating around here, though I'm not sure where.

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