Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Talking About Free, Stripped Down But Functional RPGs - GURPS Lite

GURPS, the infinite frontier. Where amazing sourcebooks boldly go.

Sure, D&D 5e is all the rage right now, but GURPS has been giving away its stripped down but functional ruleset for the last 10 years.

Don't believe me?

Yep, free at the SJG's site / Warehouse 23


  1. Great stuff. Probably the king of the heavy crunch games.

    1. GURPS Lite is actually pretty solid for a quick, lite system. Just enough "crunch" to feel "realistic" (for those who prefer simulationism over narrativism), but agile enough to get the hell out of the way of the game. I've used for all kinds of games, and is my go to for replacing complicated or unnecessarily complicated rules. Wish it got more love.

    2. by crunch what benchmarks are we looking at? If its just the rules and not the Options (like advanatges and skills) its only 10 or so pages. There is 3d6 resolution mechanics at 1 page, Physical limitations and feats at about 5 pages (running, jumping, climbing, even digging which can be equated to any work related activity), basic combat is 2 pages, fatigue, injury and hazards are about 3 pages.
      Many people play with just 1/3 of those rules and are quite happy (basically the rules found in GURPS Lite).
      The rest of the bulk of the book is for details that people want to go into but other game systems sell you at 10-20USD a pop - like vehicles, animals, modern combat rules, designing your own equipment and vehicles... In Basic Set the bulk is from Options, examples, and clear concise language (best edited books if you check out how much FAQ or errata pages it produces).
      Anyway, there are MIB (men in black) and fans who offer to explain and simplify give demos for the rules.

  2. I used to run GURPS from GURPS Lite for all sorts of "Cthulhu meets X-Files" type adventures back in the nineties with occassional historical games set in Rome or Japan. Good fun.

  3. Thanks for sharing this. Always been curious about GURPS

  4. Quick-Start BRP ain't bad either.

  5. I ran games at cons for decades using GURPS Lite. With just a few extra advantages and disadvantages, you can run almost anything. Traveller, fantasy, modern, sci fi.

  6. GURPS is good stuff. Have 3rd edition. Folks are confused, it seems, by the word "optional." I don't ever use the complicated simulationist rules that seem to scare folks off.

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