Yes, I’m finally getting around to ranting about Warpstar! I’m juggling so many things right now. But let’s get this party started.
So what’s Warpstar? It’s the kissing cousin of Warlock. And what’s that mean? Well, Warlock is a combination of the old Fighting Fantasy Books and 1st Edition Warhammer Fantasy. Warpstar takes that same game system applies it to basically Warhammer 40K Rouge Trader. You know First Edition again. It’s a rules lite game but still has enough crunch and keep things interesting.
Here’s the basic system for both games. Roll a d20 add your skill and you need to meet or beat a 20. That’s the basics. There are no stats other than Stamina (Think Hit Points) and Luck. Everything else is by Skills. Of course, what skills you can improve depend on your Career. And there’s Advanced Careers. Since it’s basically Science Fiction Game. OK more like Science Fantasy. You’ve got the usual high tech weapons, armor, equipment, and, of course, starships.
Starship combat follows the same basic rules as character combat. That’s a good thing. One of my pet peeves with many Sci-Fi RPG’s is that starship combat either becomes so abstract that it’s nearly meaningless. Or it becomes a whole other game, more like a war game. And since it’s based around grim and gritty, your ship can blow up with you on it. New characters all around. And speaking of “characters”. Ships have an AI so the ship is basically an NPC.
Next up. I want to talk about Glyphs. These are the “magic” or weird powers of the setting. The characters may tap into the chaotic powers of the Warp. Like everything else, it requires a skill roll. Blow it and you just may end up with mutations. Not a good thing. There’s the usual types of powers that you’d expect to see.
That’s the crunchy bits. What I really find cool is the setting. I admit that I have not paid attention to the official WH40K setting. Sure I had 1st Edition but I didn’t play it that much. And I haven’t looked at any of the official RPG’s. With that being said, I like the setting presented in Warpstar. Sure it was inspired by 40K but there’s also some decent influence from Dune and thus making the setting more suitable to your standard band of murder hobos. It’s grim, gritty, and morally gray. And the evil things are really, really evil. And heck an enterprising GM could drag in some of the more horrific monsters from Warlock.
I will say this. While Warlock and Warpstar use the same basic rules. Warpstar does seem a bit more refined with more options for characters out the gate. All in all. Thumbs up.
You can grab up Warpstar on DrivethruRPG.