Star Wars D6: The Best RPG System Ever Created?

Star Wars D6: The Best RPG System Ever Created?

With Critical Role creating a D6 system it’s time to discuss THE BEST D6 RPG in the universe, Star Wars.

In a world inundated with video games, there remains one pastime that never loses its charm—the role-playing game. Nothing compares to the exhilaration of sitting around a table with friends, casting yourself into a completely different reality, guided by the rules of the game, your imagination, and a set of dice.

Buckle up adventurers because today we venture into the cosmos to explore the most iconic D6 RPGs ever created! Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game, a D6 system, by West End Games (WEG). (Not to be confused with Star Wars ROLEPLAYING GAME or Star Wars Edge of The Empire.)

The Birth of the D6 System

In the mid-1980s, WEG was primarily known for its licensed RPGs, particularly Ghostbusters. The company took the mechanics from that game—using six-sided dice (or D6s) for all its checks—and adapted it for a Star Wars RPG, creating the D6 system. This system, despite its simplicity, demonstrated immense depth and versatility that would later influence the design of other games.

The Saga Unfolds: Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game

In 1987, two years after the release of Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi, West End Games acquired the license to produce a Star Wars-themed RPG. The franchise was seemingly lying dormant, with no new film on the horizon. Yet, WEG turned this seemingly risky move into a significant success.

The first edition of Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game came in a simple box set, but its contents were anything but ordinary. The game provided a comprehensive, detailed guide to the Star Wars universe, capturing its spirit and essence like never before.

Character creation was simple yet engaging. You could choose to play as a classic archetype from the Star Wars universe—like a brave Rebel Soldier, a rogue Smuggler, a Jedi Knight—or create your own unique character. Each archetype was defined by attributes like Dexterity, Knowledge, Mechanical, Perception, Strength, and Technical, with each skill associated with one of these attributes.

The game emphasized narrative and adventure, with players rolling D6s to determine the outcomes of their actions, guided by the skill levels of their characters. The more skilled a character, the more dice they could roll, and the greater their chance of success.

Fan Favorite Modules: A Journey Through the Star Wars Universe

Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game stood out not only for its D6 mechanics and its expansive lore, but also for its highly immersive and action-packed adventure modules. Let’s now set our hyperdrive and traverse the galaxy to some of the most fan-favorite modules released by West End Games.

Tatooine Manhunt

One of the earliest modules, “Tatooine Manhunt,” made a lasting impact on players. The module’s premise centered around rescuing a Rebel Alliance hero, Adar Tallon, hidden on Tatooine, while fighting off bounty hunters and the Empire. The module was a thrilling mix of intrigue, action, and diplomacy, perfectly capturing the spirit of the Star Wars universe. It even included characters from the movies, like Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader.

Scavenger Hunt

In “Scavenger Hunt,” players must find the wreck of the Dreadnaught, an old Republic warship carrying an experimental and highly dangerous hyperdrive, before the Imperial forces do. This module stood out for its sandbox-style gameplay, where players could traverse the galaxy, engage in space combat, and deal with a variety of obstacles on different planets.

DarkStryder Campaign

One of the most ambitious modules was the “DarkStryder Campaign.” This series of four adventure books took players to the Outer Rim to face off against the enigmatic DarkStryder, a powerful and mysterious alien. The series introduced a long-term storyline, complex NPCs, and the opportunity for players to command their own ship, the New Republic corvette FarStar. It marked a significant departure from earlier modules and was praised for its depth, complexity, and creativity.

Death Star Technical Companion

Though not a module, the “Death Star Technical Companion” deserves a mention. This sourcebook details the Death Star’s schematics and personnel, offering a tantalizing opportunity for GMs to stage a heist or infiltration mission in this iconic location. This companion encapsulates the attention to detail that West End Games brought to the Star Wars universe, providing an inside look into one of the most fearsome weapons in the galaxy.

Battle for the Golden Sun

“Battle for the Golden Sun” is another fan favorite, offering players an underwater adventure on the planet Sedri. Players were tasked with saving an entire colony from the threat of an imminent disaster. Its undersea setting, unique challenges, and suspenseful plotline made it a stand-out addition to the Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game.

Impact and Legacy of The Star Wars D6 RPG

The D6 system’s ease of play made it a favorite among both beginners and veteran role-players. Its simple mechanic allowed for a fluid gameplay and focused more on the story and characters’ actions rather than getting bogged down in complex rules.

Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game did more than provide hours of entertainment though. It helped keep the Star Wars universe alive during a quiet period in the franchise’s history. West End Games would release numerous sourcebooks, modules, and guides that expanded the universe’s lore, providing a wealth of detail about its planets, species, organizations, technology, and history.

Many of these details were incorporated into the official Star Wars canon. Terms like “Twi’lek,” “A-wing,” and “B-wing” first appeared in WEG’s sourcebooks. Timothy Zahn, the author of the pivotal Star Wars “Thrawn Trilogy,” credited the game’s sourcebooks as an invaluable reference when writing his novels.

In its run from 1987 to 1999, the D6 Star Wars RPG won the Origins Award for Best Roleplaying Rules of 1987, securing its place as a beloved classic in RPG history.

Star Wars D6 RPG is simply the BEST

West End Games’ Star Wars: The Roleplaying Game remains a cornerstone of the RPG world. It demonstrates the remarkable potential of simple mechanics in creating rich, immersive gaming experiences.

The numerous Star Wars D6 RPG modules let players experience the Star Wars universe like never before. This created an expansion of the universe’s boundaries beyond the films. These modules weren’t just about combat or exploration—they were about storytelling and character. They blended elements of intrigue, suspense, diplomacy, and adventure, making every gaming session a unique and exhilarating experience.

Star Wars D6 RPG continues to hold a special place in the hearts of role-playing and Star Wars fans alike. Its influence on the Star Wars franchise and the RPG genre at large is undeniable. Star Wars The RPG ceased publication a long time ago but it certainly left a lasting legacy. Countless fans around the world continue to play this beloved RPG – that says A LOT! Who knows maybe if the force allows… one day we’ll get a Star Wars D6 sequel for a NEW generation!

Did you play the D6 Star Wars RPG? IF not – Would you now? Tell us about it in the comments!

And while you’re here check out another NNN Article – LIKE THIS ONE! Best Answer: What is Spice in Star Wars?

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