I've been looking for a good post apocalyptic (PA) rule-set for years now. I've purchased, downloaded and begun reading through multiple over the years; however, have never found something which captured the level of violence or brutality which I associated with my dream system.
That is until I was recommended The Mutant Epoch (TME) by a trusted friend and GM of our current online campaign. I waited for about two weeks while perusing the TME website and reading write-ups as well as watching some YouTube overviews/reviews. I was really pondering the question I normally ponder when considering to purchase yet another RPG product. I've got well over 10 gigs of products and so few are actually used. Of course, that doesn't stop me from buying them.
Anyhow, I downloaded the Quick Start Rules (QSR) and got to reading. It should be noted, the QSR character generation is a very simplified version of the full Hub Rules in TME. However, I was able to roll up a pure stock human who was a 2nd rank weapons expert with a dagger. Additionally, he had one rank in stealth, medic and brawling. Equipped with a leather jacket I figured I was off to a good start. I hopped into the QSR's included adventure and quickly found myself aboard a trade raft floating toward Soggy Hearth, the module's jumping off point. I'm itching to get started.
My desire to jump into the action was a bit misguided. The phrase, “Be careful what you wish for,” quickly had me reconsidering, as I was met by grappling hooks biting into the side rails of our trade raft as a huge iron plated skullock, masterfully hefting an electrically powered chainsaw, barked orders to two other skullocks and brought his weapon of choice roaring to life. “Right... weapons expert with a dagger sounded so good ... until I'm met with an armored beast of a humanoid armed with a future day chainsaw.” Being as I'm simply giving the QSR a whirl, I have my PC jump right in. It's probably a good thing I didn't bother giving him (or her) a name, bio, or bother finding a PC portrait.
Initiative is rolled and thankfully my PC gets to go first. And I'm met with even more disappointment (or is it amusement at this point?) with a big miss. Naturally, the other side goes first. Do I bother having the two accompanying skullocks give me a swing with their machetes? I mean, I'm still greatly at risk but figure I might as well bite the bullet and see how I fair against the chainsaw. At this point, I should probably mention I'm used to d100 systems and they are my preferred rule systems. The only preliminary thought I had about the QSR was the minimal critical hit range, with a critical hit only occurring on a natural 1. I didn't see that occurring as often as in some other systems I'm used to, but without playing it's hard to tell if critical hits have as much bearing based on the heavy weapon damage compared to other systems I'm used to.
Anyways … I naturally roll a 1 on the beast of an armored skullock's attack, who brings his chainsaw down at an angle toward my PC's lower portion of his shoulder, just underneath his arm as he proceeds to sever me in half. Yep, one hit. One miss and a hit, to be more accurate. If anyone could have seen my face, it was beaming with a smile. This was it. This was what I had been looking for. I was so intrigued, I printed up one of the pregens from the QSR and acted as though he was startled enough to not jump into the first round of action. After three rounds, he too fell by the almighty brute of a skullock.
It's safe to say, I was hooked. But it only got better … again, this was just the QSR. After purchasing the TME Hub Rules, my mind was blown with the level of detail to the system and the plethora of options. I have zero intentions to run this with a group. I fully intend to simply use this system as a solo endeavor, giving me complete ability to tweak things to my preference. I fully expect it will be a bloodbath, with a very high turnover rate of PCs, with very few making it through the meat grinder. I purchased Dog Daze very soon after reading the TME Hub Rules and fully expect myself to pickup the Oscar Mike bundle offered by William & Company. If you're interested in PA systems, be sure to check this out!