What rpgs were you most pleasantly surprised by in the last few years?
I am always trying to expand my horizons and keep an open mind so suggestions are welcome. I have run 3 PbtA (AW, DW, Uncharted Worlds) , a few story games, D&d (most versions), Mothership, and Beyond the Wall and Other Adventures, and a random game here and there of various older systems.
Meanwhile, I have read a whole bunch of indy games in the last couple year. My biggest surprise lately was that I actually enjoyed Do: Pilgrims of the Air Temple. What do you suggest?
Edited: Added why this game surprised me and a link to the rules from the author/ where to buy it
This rpg is extremely light crunch. It is also focused on writing and solving problems without physical violence. I generally lean towards games with mid-level crunch (OSR games, Barbarians of Lemuria, PbtA) that kill monsters, punch-out the bad guy, or turn eventually to violence when manipulation doesn’t work (AW) so I was not sure I would enjoy this one.
The biggest nice surprise was the impact that using descriptors for the character name made. The two word names are just an adjective or verb with a noun to describe your character can really generate ideas for character depth (e.g. Flying Tiger, Silly Teapot, Flailing Button).
I was also surprised at the dynamism of the story as the different players take narrative control for less than two sentences. Also impressive was the way the game didn’t just devolve into strained story telling.
Finally, the incredibly simplistic rule for continuing stories (depending on which stones you kept more of ) where you change one of the two words of your name to show how your character changed during the adventure is shockingly effective in changing the future narratives.