Guardian Universe Core Fuzion is a superhero role-playing game from Dilly Green Bean Games. The game was released in 2004 and is set in the year 1999. Guardian Universe is one of several superhero rpgs that appeared in the late-1990s or early 2000s which involved superheroes fighting against evil one-world governments or alien-dominated Earths, including Brave New World (1999), UNsanctioned (2000), and Necessary Evil (2004). Of them all, Guardian Universe Core Fuzion may be the strangest (not necessarily a bad thing).
The Fuzion Generic Role-Playing System
Before I start talking about the Guardian Universe, I want to mention the role-playing game system used to run combat and other task resolution in the Guardian Universe. Fuzion came about from a collaboration by R. Talsorian Games and Hero Games. Most R Talsorian Games these days use the Fuzion System.
The Interlock System by R Talosian Games
Fuzion combines aspects of the Interlock System used in Mekton and Cyberpunk 2020 with The Hero System originally used in Champions. Interlock created characters by having players select skills, then progress those skills individually. Interlock skills are rated between 0 and 10. Stats are also rated between 0 and 10. Since skill tests tend to be rated between 12 and 20, a character that’s 10 at a skill plus 10 at the requisite stat is going to succeed at that particular task virtually everything while a character that is 0 at a skill plus 2 at the requisite stat character is only going to succeed 10% of the time–only when they roll a critical.
The Hero System by Hero Games
The Hero System is most famously used for the Champions superhero role-playing game, but it’s also used in Fantasy Hero and other settings by Hero Games. The Hero System does not use character classes, but instead has a detailed set of attributes, abilities, offensive combat values, and defensive combat values for one of the most involved player creation experiences in gaming. Fuzion combines aspects of these two systems in an attempt to simulate powers better than Interlock does, while streamlining the Hero System.
The Core Fuzion System
The term “Guardian Universe Core Fuzion” is a bit of a mouthful, but I think the term “Core” simply means its not one of several known offshoots or variants, but the original Fuzion System. Remember when you put the term into a search engine not to use “Guardian Universe Core Fusion”, because it’s going to turn up anything but the game you’re looking for. I made that mistake the first time.
Guardian Universe and Guardian Universe II
The Guardian Universe was designed, according to its creator (Jay Libby), to be a universe where “being a hero just plain sucks”. The Earth is controlled by “aliens and the uncanny” and angels from heaven hunt down superhumans to kill them. Meanwhile, vampires and zombies are on the loose, though you’ll need “The Harvest” supplement to play up that aspect of the game. Most people on Earth are too concerned about the pop culture to notice or care if they did notice, while many spend their spare time on “Jesus Online”. I’m serious, those are the plot points DGBD uses to sell this setting.
In other words, if you’re a sadistic gamemaster, you want to spring this universe on your unwary players. The aliens are from a place called “The Black Galaxy”, while some manner of Kosmic Tribunal may eventually come to Earth to sort things out. The only problem is, they sometimes take a case on short notice, but have been known to take 200 years to finally start a trial. Meanwhile, the superhero team the Guardian Universe is named for (The Guardians) are all dead. It’s a lot more complicated than that, but I suppose if you aren’t going to be interested by now, you’ll never be.
Dilly Green Bean Games
If you’re wondering who would be behind such a game, Dilly Green Bean Games is owned by Jay Libby and Jason Amerkanian. Dilly Green Bean Games has been in the gaming industry since 2001 and is based in Gorham, Maine. The company was a runner up for one INDY Award and has been nominated for the ENnies Publisher Fan Award. DGBG sells both full-color and black-and-white versions of their various games, which are distributed through Ingram Books.
Products sold by Billy Green Bean Games include Xandoria Saga, Xenomorph Invasion, Fuzion Products, The Basic System, Fuzion Blocks, Xandoria Galaxies, Chronicle 002 Cybermorph Invasion, Guardian OmegaVerse, Guardian Universe II, and G-Core. Dilly Green Bean Games is part of the Student Art Project, so they give young art students a chance to illustrate their game. You might think that sounds like amateur hour, but I bought these games years ago (knowing nothing about the game system) based on what I saw of the artwork. As you might imagine with a student project, the artwork has only improved over the years. I should also mention that the Dilly Green Bean Games website feature prominently their interaction with local charities, so Jay Libby and Jason Amerkanian sound like pretty good guys.
G-Core Products for Guardian Universe
If you want a newer gateway to the twisted minds of Dilly Green Bean Games, you might try out the pdf downloads of the G-Core rpg they publish. Over the last couple of years, Dilly Green Bean Games has produced a number of pdf products under its G-Core line. The G-Core System is meant to be a fast and easy superhero role-playing game. The designers say it’s taken from the old FASERIP system used by the Marvel Superheroes Role-Playing Game (1984). Along with the G-Core Rulebook, Dilly Green Bean Games sells G-Core supplements online at DriveThruRPG and RPGNow. These small products tend to introduce organizations in the Guardian Universe and cost a couple of dollars apiece. What’s more, they have some of the best art you’ll find among inexpensive pdf downloads.
A few of the G-Gore products that cover organizations include Galactic Guardians, Legacy Inc, The Future-5, The Ancient 9, Storm Corps, The Balston Group, Omega & The Guardians, and Godtech. Events that are covered in products include War of the Worlds 2010 and Monsters Twilight. You’ll also find other oddball setting information in 1985 Rogues, Beantown, Chicago: City of Fears, Oddities & Backup, and one of my favorite concepts, I, Alone.