Out of the Box

Posted: 31 May 2013 in Rules

One of the things Savage Worlds is especially good for is fast, easy conversion of other games and settings. You can do this with most games if you work at it, but SW seems deliberately designed for it, and conversion feels easier to me with SW than any other game I’ve played.

Here are some of the things you can do with Savage Worlds Deluxe right out of the box, no setting books or rules supplements needed.


This is more an exercise in cutting things out than adding them in. Reduce available races to humans and available Arcane Backgrounds to Magic, and you’re pretty much there.

Winged apes? Gorillas with the Fly monstrous ability. Acid-spitting giant slug? Giant worm with Bolt power bolted on (har har). Assorted demonic statues? Ogre with Construct monstrous ability, or the Bodyguard from the Summon Ally Power.


Let’s see, we have dwarves, elves, halflings, and humans for PCs; trolls, orcs, giant spiders, dragons, horses, liches and mass battle rules for the opposition. Setting rule of no more than one wizard per party, and LOTR magic feels more like AB: Miracles to me than AB: Magic, but YMMV.


Drop Powers, Weird Edges and almost all the Bestiary. Grab the plot line from the last Bruce Willis or Jason Statham movie you saw. You’re done.

For survival horror, season with occasional items from the Bestiary – vampires, werewolves, zombies.

For Mission: Impossible or James Bond, garnish instead with one or two items imbued with Powers courtesy of Weird Science.


You’ve got firearms, magic, elves, dwarves, and half-orcs in the rules. Cyberware is a trapping on your Edges – you levelled up and got more Strength? Sounds like muscle implants to me, chummer. Drones use the stats for suitable animals, with the Construct monstrous ability and a new description. Hacking is a dramatic task based on a Knowledge skill (and possibly a renamed Scholar Edge to boost it).


SGC is basically present-day Earth, so that’s easy. Jafar get Slow Regeneration but have a dependency on their Goa’uld larva (treat as the Dehydration -1 racial ability, but with different trapping; only happens if the larva is removed). System Lords have AB: Weird Science and gizmos like the Ribbon Device, which in the show is used with various powers – Healing, Mind Reading (trapping: hurts a lot), Deflection (force field) and Telekinesis. They seem to put New Powers into the same device rather than creating a new one each time.


All the races, all the time? Check. Laser swords and pistols? Check. AB: Psionics, mostly used for Boost/Lower Trait? Check. Anything that should have wheels gets either legs or repulsorlifts as a trapping? Check. OK, we’re good to go.


I could do so much with this game, given the time and the players. The main problem I have with it is choosing what to do next…

  1. Nathaniel says:

    Very cool post, especially since it’s just that little book. I think because we’ve moved past the “new shiny” phase of Savage Worlds, people around the internet are realizing its limitations and are shy to present how versatile Savage Worlds can bebecause all the old forum posters know that by now and present their scenarios where Savage Worlds breaks down. As a bonus, I get pretty much everything narrative I wanted out of the “Aspects” concept in Savage Worlds from this hack.

    • andyslack says:

      Thanks! Glad you liked it. I got more, but maybe later…

      Meanwhile, what do you see as the limitations? I’m curious.

      Cool hack, by the way – thanks for the link.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s