Going to get started on my *punk module (steam and clock), and I'm facing my first decision.
Do I want to use standard fantasy races?
Do I want anything nonhuman at all?
Or do I want to make my own races?
After that, I have to decide on system. (Unless I try to do a systemless modular type of system, but I don't think I work well that way. I need some kind of framework.)
Do I write a whole new system? That sort of thing makes me twitch, wondering how imbalanced my outcome is...
My options (as far as my present knowledge of the free-for-use RPG community allows) are Risus, 3.5 OGL, and Myriad.
Risus is tremendously simple, and allows me to focus more on setting than on mechanics. Unfortunately, the mechanically lite nature of Risus might prevent some of the things I'd like to codify in the system as they come up. But I can't think of any examples offhand, so it likely wouldn't be a problem.
3.5 OGL requires a lot more crunchwork from me, particularly in terms of classes and their features. Not sure I'd look forward to that. Risus allows for much simpler characters and mechanics. Even if I import the Arcadomai class system, or the Dao Sheng combat mechanics, Risus is still far and away a simpler writing experience than 3.5. My last 3.5 project (the Oculus Dei and Ehud prestige classes for 3.5 Modern) is still languishing somewhere on my external.
Probably not using 3.5 for this project.
Myriad.... The middle ground, I think. I need to sit down and spend some time reading through it again, but from what I remember, it will require some extra work for making SFX's, but less than making whole classes. Almost like making feats.
And as I pondered this and watched The Pretender, I found this. That might be another option that bears investigation. I'll print it out Monday and look over it.
Anyone (I know, the only person who follows this right now is Rob Lang, but hopefully I'll eventually drag in some more people who know more about this sort of thing than I do) with any ideas on the systems I list, or any better suggestions, is welcome to leave me a comment.