18. Favorite Game System. Unfair! Too hard to answer.
While I have long been a story-over-mechanics guy, there was a time when I admired nothing better than an elegant die mechanic. West End’s Star Wars, FASA’s Shadowrun, Mike Nystul’s Whispering Vault, and lesser-known games like Don’t Look Back: Terror Is Never Far Behind impressed me as much with their rules as with their settings—although in most cases, I liked both. I could make a long list before coming close to a true favorite.
Another stand-out is Call of Cthulhu, which I initially dismissed because of my loathing for d% systems. Once I looked at it, however, the simple beauty of the insanity/mythos mechanic won me over.
Of course, as my first and most-often-played game, D&D has long held a special place in my heart, even for its hoary mechanics. I even liked many of the innovations of the reviled 4th Edition, but I agree with the many who felt they began to fail after the lowest levels of play.
With that in mind, my choice will be the Star Wars Saga edition, which married the virtues of 3rd Edition with a few of the best elements of the then-nascent 4th Edition. I make this choice with a certain amount of practical ignorance, for while I’ve read a great deal of the Saga material, I’ve yet to run a campaign.