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Entropic Gaming System

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Average Rating:4.0 / 5
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Entropic Gaming System
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Entropic Gaming System
Publisher: Mystical Throne Entertainment
by Jeff C. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/05/2017 13:51:33

I keep buying new “generic” rpg systems in the vague hope of finding ‘The One.’ Much like dating or finding the job, I’ve gone through a lot of different rpg’s that didn’t quite make it. I raised an eyebrow when I saw the Entropic Game System. It has a lot of things I like about a generic game and Mystical Throne Entertainment about a game company for the most part.

I bought the pdf +print copies of the EGS Core Rulebook, Science Fiction, and Fantasy. Generally speaking the art, layout and typesetting on all three were top-notch. I like the use of sidebars. The length of each book was appropriate to its price. The depth of information in the Core rulebook was very appropriate to a generic rulebook. In other words- not too much crunch, not too much fluff, and enough pertinent info to start a campaign in any given genre without having to fill in all the blanks yourself. Still, there was plenty of room after the Core Rulebook to fill in those blanks for any given genre, which is nice for a generic game. The system is very adaptable and useful for a wide variety of games. I love the variable dice and attribute + skill type rolls. The system, as others have commented, reminds me a lot of Cortex or Savage Worlds. I actually think of EGS as being a kind of “lite” version of these games. The mechanics are very easy to learn and work with. The Weird rules are well thought out and generally not too complicated. A lot of games fall apart rapidly when it comes to magic/psionics/ki and other similar mechanics, but EGS deals with them very elegantly. The only thing I felt was truly missing from the Core Rules was any kind of real treatise on vehicle rules, which I’m hoping are covered in the warfare book?

Character creation for this game is a breeze once you get the basics down and have a short chat with the GM. It goes a lot more smoothly if you have an exact character archetype in mind or want to emulate a character from your favorite tv show or anime. If you don’t really have any grasp on what kind of character you want to play or were looking to roll random, this game is not the way to go. I love it because my players who can’t or won’t write a background have to use their heads a little. I guess if all else fails, you can have your GM fill in the blanks. Like so many other games these days, players must have qualities to use for in-game heroic points and at least some in-character justification for some of their abilities.

I’m not a big fan of games with fixed damage. I mean, why have all these cool dice if you’re not going to use them, right? Luckily the designers included a way to convert the fixed damage values to random rolls. Otherwise, I’d say the combat works fine. I find myself again looking forward to purchasing the warfare rules to see if we get vehicle combat and a better assortment of heavy weapons…

The only real head-scratcher for me was the talk of the Open Game License v 1.0. You can publish? your own material for the game? Or maybe you need Mystical Throne Entertainment’s approval to indicate any sort of compatibility? Or maybe WotC’s since that’s what is on the OGL? I don’t understand where any of this jibes with D&D 3.0 core rules. Maybe there needs to be an EGS system resource document? My primary interest in getting into EGS was to have a flexible system to possibly publish my own material under. Right now, I’m still trying to figure out if I’m going to get the Pinnacle Entertainment (not open game) snub of “send us everything so we can tell you you’re not pro enough,” or the patented WotC “or we’ll sue,” if I try to sell something that says it’s EGS compatible. Or if I’m back on hunt for a new universal system? I'll gladly add a fourth and maybe a fifth star onto my rating if I can get some clarity on the whole OGL issue.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Entropic Gaming System
Publisher: Mystical Throne Entertainment
by Michael L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/14/2015 21:52:28

I have been looking for a good universal system for some time now, and I heard some buzz about EGS and thought I would give it a look. At first glance, it reminded me strongly of Savage Worlds, classic Cortex, and the combat and power system evoked Legend/Runequest to me. There was a nice mix of simplicity in character creation and general rules, but with enough tactics and crunch in combat and magic to appeal to gamers who want more depth. The Qualities of characters seem especially interesting, as they can simulate all sorts of advantages and disadvantages by using pretty basic mechanics. The core mechanic is add an attribute due type with a skill die type, roll, and attempt to beat the difficulty number (7 being the standard). One minor issue for me is that I feel eight attributes are far too many and some of them seem either unnecessary or redundant, but its not a deal breaker and is an easy fix if you feel the same. Hero points, which are the game's resource for important characters, are very important to the system and figure strongly into the previously mentioned Qualities of characters. Like classic Cortex, these points seem pretty vital to success especially when the difficulty of the task is high. Combat feels tactical but fluid and quick, and while it has many of the options of Legend/Runequest, it does not feel as complex. As written damage is fixed and it not modified by anything except Hero Points and called shots, but there is an option to roll it randomly. Armor is treated as extra health points, and when those are depleted further damage is taken directly from health. This is a decision I feel is a bit odd, and is justified in the rules as pieces of armor being loosened or knocked off. After combat armor points are restored, but it doesn't feel like even heavy armor is terribly useful except for absorbing a few more points of damage. There is an option in the book for treating it more like ablative damage resistance, and I prefer that to the standard rule. Special powers feel like a mix of Savage Worlds and Legend/Runequest, with a general system covering everything from sorcerers to superheroes but powers can be manipulated and tweaked on the fly depending on the situation. There is a good range of powers and options in the core rules, so there is a lot of potential for different character types for different genres. There is also a good section on running the games for GMs, and a solid list of adversaries. The basic book seems more focused on fantasy and modern games, but a science fiction supplement is forthcoming. Basic rules for designing various racial and cultural backgrounds are also in the GM section and there are good examples of stock fantasy and sci fi species. Aside from a few minor quibbles, the Entropic Gaming System seems like a good option if you are looking for a universal system with a simple mechanic but potential for depth and complexity. And even the quibbles I have with it are easy fixes if you feel the same, and at $5 it is well worth a look.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Entropic Gaming System
Publisher: Mystical Throne Entertainment
by Joel G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/05/2015 11:22:21

Very good system that can be applied to many different settings and game styles. In addition of being relatively simple to apply with limited computation, the system brings epic capacity to heroes and monsters by using clever dice pooling and hero points to modify dice rolls and avoid non-epic failures. I would say for me, the weakest point is the way armors are managed, but that's probably a matter of taste. Overall, a very powerful yet simple rule system with full potential for many entertaining gaming nights with friends! Good work!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Entropic Gaming System
Publisher: Mystical Throne Entertainment
by Robert S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/17/2014 21:49:20

This is not a full review, but I am so intrigued by the EGS system, I have to place a comment here. For me this generic RPG system is the EABA, a perfect blend of the old Cortex, Savage Worlds and Master Book systems.

Basically characters have an Ability and a Skill, all measured from d4 to d12 and you combine these two in a way that suits the situation. After that you roll both dice and compare them to a Target Number, usually 7.

But there is a lot more to this system. The combat system is not a plain „roll-hit-damage“ thing, but offers tactics, strategies, qualities and hero points to make combat entertaining and memorable. Especially I like the Fear Dice Pool for monsters and the Heroic Dice Pool for the characters. An additional layer of brilliance and fun.

I would say these rules are not overly complicated and can be put in the rules medium section, same as I would put Savage Worlds. But this is NOT Savage Worlds, although it might look similar on the surface. It is different, does not use any cards (thumbs up!), characters are being defined by Skills & Abilities and Qualities are used for gaining Hero Points during dramatic situations. And not a lot of calculations here: a good thing on Friday evening after a long week of work.

The book includes a good amount of situational rules (Falling, Drowning, Poison, Chases, Morale for Minions/Allies, Exhaustion, Disease, Aging, etc.) but they are all easy to comprehend and use common sense - very intuitive.

A Bestiary with enough monsters and characters to keep you going for some time is included as well. It consists of just the stats for the beasts, but hey, we all have our own understanding of a goblin or dragon anyway. Oh, and Stats are short: 8 lines to describe an average monster/animal/adversary.

What else can I say except of this is the game I was looking for since 2006. Well worth the $5.00 and a hot alternative to a lot of other generic RPGs.

I hope this system really takes off and a lot of people will hop on and put out some cool settings for it. The included OPEN GAME LICENSE is a good thing for developers, I suppose.

This is a real gem.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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