Trying to sell d&d players on ICRPG


…is turning out to be harder than I thought.

The line I’ve been using is that it’s rules-lite and faster paced, but most of my friends seem to really like crunchyness and complication. I wonder if there is another angle I can use.


Personally, my players were a little afraid to leave the structure of D&D in favor of something more free-form and loose. I’m so burned out on 5e I told them I wasn’t going to run another D&D game, so it was this or somebody needed to step up to run games. They love my games (which I’m so humbled by), so nobody wanted to loose that.
So on character making night for our ongoing game (Castlevania/Bloodborne inspired action-horror) when a player wanted to play an alchemist I said, “No prob, how would you like to go about making your potions?” All of a sudden he lit up, and a guy who’s normally (and admittedly) not very creative came up with this cool idea of his steamer trunk full of supplies he wants to use milestones to improve, unreliable potion results, all kinds of interesting stuff! Everyone got in on it as we all got excited making a character mechanically and collaboratively with him to make exactly what he wanted.
I addressed the room with no one particular in mind, “Who’s next?”
I heard, “I’d like to be a pirate, but also a werewolf. Can that be a thing?”
Through the rest of character making night, everyone cut loose and we have some wild characters as a result that are exactly what the players wanted. It was DIY homebrew right from the start, and everyone found an incredible freedom in it. That’s what did it for my party of 8 hardcore 5e lovers: freedom to create with no “balancing” issues. We’ve had the most intense, breathless, and even emotional games we’ve had together since and nobody is looking back.
I don’t know if that angle will work for your group, or how much you’re willing and ready to go off the rails, but it’s another feather in your cap. Best of luck!


Whenever running a new system after D&D for a while I find it best to NOT run fantasy - you get too much comparison between the systems.

You can also introduce ICRPG piece meal rather than all at once as well. Using single DCs rooms and expanded effort is a good start.


My usual line goes something like: “Name me two things that you wish your Class in 5e could do, that it cannot do right now?” and then I explain how easily they could have everything they want in a System that is designed to let YOU make YOUR Character Class rather than you picking from someone elses ideas and just ‘making it work’. It’s how I got my Players involved in Tiny Dungeons 2e, and all of the rest of the TinyD6 Line, and once I have a firm grasp of ICRPG it will be how I get them to play ICPRG.

Well that and I will have them watch the Intro to ICRPG YouTube that our benevolent Overlord posted so long ago. If that doesn’t sell them, I will put up an AD for new Friends… :metal:


I have been trying to do just that. Timers have worked out great. I will try room DC next.


Which video in particular? They are so good.


I want to say it was called Core Mechanics? Core Concepts…? It’s been a while lol


It’s a hard one, my group of players are so reluctant to do home rules or anything out of the books. I think this is because they invested all the money in the books and that is a shame.

Just run a game and start with no character sheets and ask them to invent a couple spells and just wing it.


This is the answer. Show the players they are allowed to be creative and are not bound to a book.


Start sneaking ICRPG mechanics in one at a time. They’ll be hooked before they know what’s happening.


Thanks for the advice guys. I’ve been adding ICRPG me mechanics in for a while (ICRPG initiative and timers). Maybe I will try to hook them with a one shot. The freedom angle is a nice one!


I was going to add that sometimes its not the system but the uncertainty of change… and i was gunna recommend to try it as a one shot…


Like when trying any new system, do a one shot with your group. No long term commitments, just a night of fun with the new system. I recommend Viking Death Squad or Flight of the Red Sword to let the game sell itself.


it can be tough. DOnt even mention ‘systems’ or ‘icrpg’ just apply the thinking, let them be comfortable. It’s all ‘D&D’ … just run it better, faster, and start to blend damage damage, control hp ascent, take away loot, and run timers…


I love ICRPG and think it’s genius but it doesn’t fit with my GM style. I want a game where it’s less video game like with power ups and such. I need it slowed down and a bit more rooted to reality or what the reality of a world with magic and such could be like compared to the world we know. Also I seek more of the story driven and role playing aspect of the game. In essence… what folks are calling the Mercer effect these days. That is the GM style I have always run. I moved away from TSR and rules like 5e about 15 yrs back in favor of The Window but when ICRPG came around… I seen in it the idea’s I was always looking for to make my house rules. As such… 6 months later… I have that built and we have been using it. The growing pains were to be expected just as ICRPG went through to fine tune this system and I’m sure I have a bit more to go but it’s ever so close. With all that said above… you can probably get an idea of the two types at work here… quick and fast and video game like (I actually don’t like comparing ICRPG to that but it does fit fairly well. I guess for lack of a better comparison to try and explain it?) and then you have the Bible thumping 5e guys who (rules lawyers) will spend an entire evening running a single battle against one monster and somewhere in between you have me. Need some rules but prefer the acting. This is what you are dealing with out there and it’s a hard sell because you need to first understand them and what they prefer first and foremost.


I felt the same way when I first picked it up: too much like a video game. But in my experience there’s nothing in the book that actually gets in the way of role playing - it’s a toolbox. You can put as much RP depth on it as you want. Anyway, once I loosened up my thinking I discovered there’s very little it can’t do. Loot doesn’t just have to be stuff, it can be traits, or beliefs that create a mechanical effect or or or. Playing theatre of the mind instead of prop based play also changed the dynamic.

Anyway, my two cents.


I understand where you are coming from but I disagree with your conclusion. You can make ICRPG fit almost any style of play and GMing. In fact, for a story driven game ICRPG is a better fit. It isn’t videogame-y if you don’t make it so like TheyCallMeDeans said. ICRPG is a great toolbox; it is up to you how you want to shape it and use it.


Yeah, the concept of Loot as advancement threw me off at first. But, like others have mentioned, milestone rewards don’t have to be Loot unless you want them to be. They can be Feat-type advances or magical runes that suddenly appear on a character’s skin or mutations or enlightenment or whatever. I think ICRPG is just a big ol’ tool box that you and your players can build your own game out of.


Some of my players are off-put by the loot as advancement thing, but it made more sense to them as a sci-fi system. I want to try running a warp shell one shot with them, or even use a cyberpunk setting I’m working on.


I had some problems getting people on board also. Honestly, the BIGGEST selling point that worked for me was when I broke down COST EFFICIENCY, it is just plain cheaper to play. When I told them the core books you can buy in just pdf and print however you want, it brought most of my group in.