Savage Worlds: Home-brew Settings & Conversions

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Savage Worlds

Hello World!

Recently there is a discussion going on the pinnacle Board I find fascinating.  The intent of the Post was clear enough:

Hello everyone, I have a player whose character fights in the Sherlock Holmes style “Scientific Boxing” (think the Robert Downey Jr., 2009 Sherlock Holmes movie). I’m trying to think of an edge the character should have to mimic the style.

If you are not sure what this refers too, you can watch a fight scene from this movie here. However the details of this posting are only the “trapping” of what I find so interesting about this thread. There are several approaches to this, from edges, to simple trapping to arcane powers and other ideas. No one has the “right” idea and it is clear the opinions on how to do this vary greatly. This does illustrate one of the great strength of Savage Worlds and one of it´s biggest weaknesses.

There is no “right way” of doing it. All suggestions are valid. You could create specific Edges to simulate it. You could have an arcane power for it. You could simply use it as trappings for Tricks. you could… This can be confusing to someone not very familiar with Savage Worlds. This thread shows quiet perfectly how powerful the flexibility and broad strokes of the Savage Worlds rules are. You want to simulate something cool you have seen somewhere and you can. Easily. It also shows that Savage Worlds works really well as a toolbox, everyone simply picks the tools he is most familiar and comfortable with to approach a goal. At the end we all end up with the same thing: A way to simulate a character fighting like Sherlock Holmes did in that movie.

This is of course also a weakness. Just because in your group that kind of style is simulated with Edges does not mean you can go to a new group and expect it to work the same way. You always have to familiarize with the rules interpretation and “style” that is dominant in a group and in a way “relearning” the rules by looking at them from a different perspective when you join a new one. That is one of the reasons it is stated very often to first play Savage Worlds as “rules as written” to get a feel for all the nuances and possibilities. That will make it easier to adapt to different play-stiles.

Personally I find this flexibility liberating. I am really not too concerned about the way I do stuff. I simply go with what I am most comfortable with and can be pretty optimistic it will be fine. It is more important that it plays well with the way my group acts and plays and not so much wich mechanic I use. Do what you want and make it FFF!

What do you think about this? Do you like the Savage Worlds flexibility or is it sometimes frustrating you? How would you simulate this?

Read you soon!

2 thoughts on “Savage Worlds: Home-brew Settings & Conversions

  1. I’m just scratching the surface, however, the flexibility is what has drawn me to Savage Worlds. I was a fan of the HERO System, back in the day but then sort of dropped out of gaming entirely.

    Now, 20 years later, I’ve found myself getting back into the hobby. When I first started looking about for a system to play, I wanted something similar to HERO but not so “clunky”. After a few folks suggested SW, I checked it out.

    I love being able to create virtually any effect. For that matter, even when I’m not playing I love to see somethig like this movie clip and just tinker around, to see how I would do it (even if I have no intention of ever using it “in-game”). It’s almost a game within a game.

    I also love the hindrances and different twists that you can take with them.

    As I said, I’m just getting started. I suspect it will be a little more work to properly balance adventures than it would be with a “static” system. However, that’s a small price to pay.


    1. True enough. I came from DnD and was looking into MRQII when I found SW. It really inspires me to just go ahead and do fun stuff instead of over-thinking things. Sometimes I fret far too much about how to do things still as I am also pretty new to SW, but it gets better.

      I also feel that balance is something you will never truly have with Savage Worlds. The exploding dice can always turn the most weak creature into a monster that kills a character in one hit. However that is also something I like about the system, victory is never truly assured. But this will also be the hardest part to get through to my players.


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