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The Douchey DM » Reviews » Savage Worlds Deluxe — First Impressions

Savage Worlds Deluxe — First Impressions

Savage Worlds Deluxe
I picked up a physical copy of Savage Worlds Deluxe from my FLGS.

In case you haven’t heard of it, Savage Worlds is a universal or generic role-playing game system. It’s strengths are its simplicity of character generation and game prep.

While the pdf for the deluxe edition has been available for some time, the long-anticipated book is just now making it to stores out here in the more  remote parts of the world.

There are a few changes from the Explorer’s Edition that I’d like to touch on that I’ve noticed thus far:

  • No More Guts Skill!
    Huzzah!  The Guts skill is now an optional rule. If the players need to keep their cool in a horrific situation, they make a spirit roll now. The inclusion of both seemed redundant to me.
  • New Chase Rules
    The Deluxe Edition uses a series of skill checks (or skill contests), along with a modified playing card initiative system, to resolve chases, rather than the increment-based system used in the Explorer’s Edition.
    They also include a “complication” system, where disaster can strike the pursuers or the pursued. These new chase rules will make for more exciting chases, rather than the endless rolling and rerolling to gain increments.
  • Interludes
    This is red meat for role-players. In a nutshell, when there is downtime during the game session (ie, the party’s travelling a long distance, on the mend in the hospital, at a stake out waiting for their mark), the GM will select on player who will draw a card from the initiative deck.
    The player must then tell a story, in character — to the other characters, about his or her past — the suit of the card determines if the story is to be about a tragedy, victory, lost love, etc. Once the players does so, he or she gets a benny. The next time there’s downtime, the GM selects a different player, and so on.
    I have to say, this is a BRILLIANT way to use in-game downtime. Rather than the GM simply  saying, “okay, you’re on board the Britannia, on your way to Europe — let’s fast forward three weeks,” the players get to explore their PC’s history and share that history with the other players.
  • Setting Rules
    Several setting books have included rules to modify the basic Savage Worlds system to suit a particular setting flavor. Many of these are now included in the Deluxe Edition.
One other little thing I noticed: like the Explorer’s Edition, there’s a collection of bad guys in the back of the book. In the Deluxe Edition, they’ve included little round images of each monster, giving you a nice graphic to use for a marker on a battle mat You only need to print them to a color printer and cut them out.
I’m still reading the book, so I’m sure I’ll have more to say on the Deluxe Edition later.


Written by

Stu Venable is the producer of Happy Jacks RPG Podcast and writer and editor of He is founder and director of the Poxy Boggards and a member of Celtic Squall. He holds a degree in Journalism and Public Relations from California State University, Long Beach. He is a husband and a father. He hates puppies.

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3 Responses to "Savage Worlds Deluxe — First Impressions"

  1. EngeNo Gravatar says:

    Sounds like improvements so far! Is it still $10? I’m looking forward to picking up a copy.

  2. KerryNo Gravatar says:

    Enge – nope it’s a $29.99 MSRP hardback book now

  3. Bradley HarveyNo Gravatar says:

    This system is my next RPG purchase. I want to get this to get others to play something else besides D&D 4E or Pathfinder. Besides it is always good to learn another system.

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