Generic Cortex+

Why do I want to write a generic C+ system?

  1. I have issues with FATE
  2. I have issues with Savage Worlds
  3. I want a generic system written up so when I get the urge to play a game in a relatively simple, generic setting I don’t have to write a new C+ Hack, I can just use GC+
  4. I have enough pressures on my time, what harm can this do?

What are my design goals?

  1. Dice pool that will work for any setting
  2. Standardised powers/skills/traits/talents/sfx system (C+ has 4 currently)
  3. Simple Character creation (PC and NPC) rules
  4. Character advancement rules (so far my hacks all miss this)

To go back to part 1, I even worked this out in a table…

Sys C+ FATE Savage worlds




Narrative play Published rules Published settings
Narrative play Published settings Published settings
Quick to stat up quick to stat up Amount of conversions
hackers guide quick rolling
All the dice Random adventures
Lots of dice All the dice




time building dice pools Dice no damage hits
Lack of published material Ladders similar characters
Not one core rules set Points for aspect too many talents
amount of stunts damage system












Note – some Pros I counted twice.

I also did a table for Fantasy Cortex Plus (it won again) but that won’t fit in a blog…


  1. I know it’s almost a year since you post this, but I’m exactly in the same situation and I want to create a single hack for Cortex Plus that I’ll use in most of games.

    I’d like to know if you made some progress, so I could learn from your experience.

    1. Sorry but no. Rather than a generic set i worked on my fantasy hack. While the idea of a generic system is nice i think its better to tweak it for each setting. Hence mass effect, fantasy, eclipse phase all using c+ but being different. having same issue with FATE. As it stands its too generic to be interesting. Its nice to have one ruleset, but each setting should have something unique.

      1. Thanks for the reply, I understand your point, but I do not share it. I think that settings specificity shouldn’t be based on rules specificity. But genre specificity should be represent by rule set.

        That’s why I don’t like the FHR rule set, the power set are a creation of the Comic Book Genre, and are quite hard to balance and to give good progression feeling. Because in Comic book, heroes tend to start at High Power and rarely gain power. On the other hand, Adventure Genre, like D&D, progression is frequent and constant.

        The same goes with Milestones, that were clearly designed in MHR to help provide guidelines to play Marvel’s Supers, because they know them better than we do, but it’s not the case in classic RPG.

        Personally FHR should have been more based on the Action Roleplaying because it’s closer to the experience of most Fantasy RPG out there.

        That’s why I still think that a Generic Cortex + should exist … at least for the adventure genre that I use to play in almost all settings.

        Thanks anyway, at least replying to you helped me focus my work.

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