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Badass $0.00
Publisher: Stargazer Games
by Andy H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/30/2011 14:45:11

"Kick logic to the curb and DO THE IMPOSSIBLE!!" ~ Kamina from Tengu Toppu Gurren Lagan

"Badass" is what it sets out to be: lite on the details, heavy on the badassery. Like promised, it kicks logic in the teeth and leaps onward in pursuit of higher things. It doesn't have particularly ornate or intellectual goals. It knows that its sole aim is awesomeness, and it does a good job of pursuing that.

The rules complexity of this game (which, by the way, is free, which is also awesome) is interesting. It doesn't have aspirations of being a toolkit like Wushu Open; instead, unlike many rules-lite systems, it has a very, very specifically geared focus. I like that, a lot. You won't necessarily be able to run different types of games with this system, but that's okay. You don't need to.

Character creation is very simple. You give your character a Defining Moment (the moment that made them become AWESOME) and a type (Kickass, Smartass, or Wiseass....or, fighters, thinkers, and smooth talkers). Then, you add "Flavas", which are more or less somewhere between classes and feats. They further define your character. Then you get Badass Points, which you spend to activate Flavas or to add to your roll (or, as the combat section notes, to increase your Initiative in the middle of a fight). That's it.

The core mechanic is equally simple: roll 2 six-sided dice...AND MAKE A FIST WHEN YOU ROLL IT. (Otherwise, you lose a Badass Point and the roll doesn't count.) Try and beat a target number. There's another important thing to note, though. Whenever you do something that is A: logical or B: fearful, especially if you want to save your own skin, that causes you to lose Badass Points. Because logic and fear are not (usually) badass. You also regain Badass Points through badass actions...or other things, such as having a flashback scene during downtime.

Character advancement is also simple. The only way that you gain XP (or, rather, Awesomeness, because "XP" is not a badass enough term) is by spending Badass Points. The more Badass Points you spend, the more Awesomeness you get, and you spend Awesomeness to get new Flavas or develop new Contacts.

That's it. Where this game truly shines is in the specific rules, particularly the Flavas. Take, for example, this Flava...

"Teacher - To teach an Average Joe to be a Badass is Badass in itself. Some Badasses actually spend time teaching in colleges, teaching courses like Archaeology when they’re not busy whipping cultists and punching Nazis in the face. Benefit: Once per game session, you may perform any form of deliberate or careful planning without losing a Badass Point."

Oh, and there's also a Flava that lets you arm wrestle the GM to change something in the game.

That's Badass. And did I mention it's FREE?

[4 of 5 Stars!]
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