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Old 04-17-2014, 07:42 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jan 2005
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Default Basic GURPS Toolkit?

What books and supplements do you find yourself returning to? What do you consider to be the essential GURPS Toolkit needed to run the kind of games you like to run?

For me, Minimal equipment (-2) is the Basic Set: Characters and Basic Set: Campaign.

Adding GURPS Powers, and Power-Ups 2&3 (Perks and Talents) makes it Basic equipment (+/-0). And if there's magic, I use Sorcery from Pyramid. And Low-Tech. Anything beyond that is gravy.

Last edited by Anders; 04-17-2014 at 10:01 AM. Reason: forgot one other thing
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:04 AM   #2
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

I find myself using Magic and Martial Arts more often than Powers, but that's probably because I tend to play fantasy games with lots of combat. Basic + Magic is really just fine for me (Martial Arts is there because I like having a lot more detail in combat); I don't consider it an equipment penalty.
After those three or four books, I would add Fantasy, then the DF books (which are useful for any fantasy game, not only hack-and-slash, although that's primarily how they're geared).

I've heard people here refer to Powers as "the third Basic book," but I haven't found that to be the case at all. Powers is a fantastic book, well worth having, but it's really only needed for certain kinds of games IMO (such as superhero games or games in which you're trying to model a specific ability from another rpg, a novel, a movie, etc.).
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Old 04-17-2014, 08:18 AM   #3
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

Character and Campaigns, obviously. And Powers. Everything else is nice, but not crucial to what I play.
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:01 AM   #4
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

Basic, of course. Action 2 for modern-ish games, Magic, DF 1, 2, 3, 8, and 13 and DFM1 for fantasy games these days. I've referred to it a time or two while writing, but I've never once used Powers for actual play.
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Old 04-17-2014, 09:15 AM   #5
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

It's really unique to each campaigns but the common books are:

Basic set
Martial Art

After that is campaign flavor; DF series, Banestorm, Ritual Magic Path, Psi, Power, Super, Low Tech, High Tech, Ultra Tech, some pyramid stuffs, ect...
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:03 AM   #6
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

I've run two long-term campaigns since GURPS Fourth Edition came into being:
The Company: The "kit" for my current secret-agents campaign is the Basic Set (both volumes), High-Tech (for the gear), and Martial Arts (for the fighting) – with occasional use of Power-Ups 2: Perks, Power-Ups 3: Talents, and Tactical Shooting. I keep Social Engineering on standby, but so much of what goes on is deeply clandestine and completely avoids humans that this fine work has yet to become a core tool. This campaign inspired the Action series, but those supplements are really more "my interpretation of the above stuff, put into writing"; I'm not using them per se.

The Dawn of Magic: The "kit" for my previous fantasy campaign was the Basic Set (both volumes), Low-Tech (for the gear), Magic and Thaumatology (for the magic), and Martial Arts (for the fighting) – with occasional use of Mass Combat and Powers. This campaign informed the Dungeon Fantasy series, but here, too, the supplements were notes on my general approach rather than materials I used. Similarly, many concepts eventually found their way to Power-Ups 5: Impulse Buys and Thaumatology: Magical Styles, but I didn't use those works.
Analyzing that, I guess it would be fair to say that my most basic tools are the Basic Set, Martial Arts, and the Power-Ups series, and that I'm highly prone to using the -Tech books and genre quick-starts.
Sean "Dr. Kromm" Punch <>
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:41 AM   #7
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

I think it would be helpful to post what kind of campaign you normally run, or run with the books you list (if it's not obvious). (Using "you" in the general sense)
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:39 PM   #8
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

I play a few types of games:

Basic Set
Powers or Thaumology
I might use Low Tech or martial arts, but not likely

Basic Set
Space Ships
I might use Powers

I will usually have a couple of books as 'inspiration'

Notably missing from this list are most of the Tech books (though I use LTC3 fairly often) and Magic.
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Last edited by ericthered; 04-17-2014 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 04-17-2014, 04:46 PM   #9
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

The 4e campaigns I have run were:

Laundry: stopping the Cthulhoid horrors that lurk below the surface of mathematics: Basic Set, High-Tech, Magic, Thaumatology and Power-Ups 2 and 3, with the odd smidgen of Martial Arts.

Infinite Cabal: Sir Isaac Newton's Royal Society set out to understand the Infinite Worlds: Basic, Infinite Worlds, Magic, Thaumatology, High-Tech, Low-Tech, Power-Ups 2 and 3 and occasional Powers and Martial Arts.
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Old 04-17-2014, 05:29 PM   #10
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Default Re: Basic GURPS Toolkit?

I have run a short campaign using only GURPS Lite.

In general, I consider the Basic Set and the appropriate Tech book required, and if there are going to be lots of powers, Powers and Thaumatology. Other books are added as needed, for instance in a Transhuman Space or Eclipse Phase game, Space and Bio-tech are certainly needed
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gurps, rules, supplement

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