Here’s an excellent adaptation of Savage Worlds to the FireFly universe. I’m a fan of the all-too-short-lived Josh Whedon science fiction series.
Risus is a free RPG from S. John Ross. He writes:
Risus is a complete Role Playing Game (RPG) designed to provide an “RPG Lite” for those nights when the brain is too tired for exacting detail. Risus is especially valuable to GMs assembling a quick convention game, or any late-night beer-and-pretzels outing. While it is essentially a Universal Comedy System, it works just as well for serious play (if you insist!). Best of all, a Risus character takes about 20 seconds to create!
CREDIT WHERE IT’S DUE
Inspiration for the nature of this game comes largely from the sadly out-of-print classic, Ghostbusters, from West End Games, sparked against an idea (Clich�s) from DC Heroes. The final shape and form of the game was inspired by Over the Edge, from Atlas Games. Other RPGs (most notably GURPS, FUDGE and Tunnels and Trolls), have also provided valuable inspiration …
For me, nothing has ever quite caught the magic of the original Dungeons and Dragons rules I picked up sometime in the 1970s. It was a single 8 1/2 x 11 blue book, and it covered only levels 1-5 or so. But it was indescribably wonderful.
Swords and Wizardry is another (I’ve seen several) attempt to recapture that magic that we had before we all became older and White Wolf cynical. The authors write:
In 1974, Gary Gygax (1938-2008) wrote the world�s first fantasy role-playing game, a simple and very flexible set of rules that launched an entirely new genre of gaming. In 1976, the first supplement to these rules was published, with Rob Kuntz as Mr. Gygax�s co-author. Many years later, in the year 2000, Wizards of the Coast allowed the use of most of the material from that game under a license called the Open Game License. What you�re reading is an approximate re-creation of the Gary Gygax original fantasy role-playing game, created using the Open Game License. The re-creation isn�t exact � it�s not allowed to be, and we have treated the original copyright with utmost respect. But while the language in this book may be a little bit less magical than in the original, we believe the rules and system are close enough to reproduce the �lightning in a bottle� of that original edition (often called 0e). In fact, we think Swords & Wizardry is actually a bit better organized and easier to learn than the original. Since the original rules were supplemented with several later books, it�s impossible to nail down any �canon� set of rules for 0e. This is our interpretation of the game, using rules and systems from only the original set of rulebooks and some selected rules-material from the later supplements.
A few years ago, I bought a box of Pokethulhu miniatures — little figures that look like Pokemons crossed with Cthulhuian Horrors. I had no idea that there also was a role playing game to go with it. And it’s free! Pokethulhu RPG.