***Savage Worlds has been my go-to RPG system since it's first print run. I fell in love with it's Fast, Furious & Fun approach to gaming and the fact, that it was an easily adaptable, generic rules system. I could write a whole article (and probably, will) about why I enjoy Savage Worlds so much, but this time I want to look at only one aspect of this system. An aspect that Savage Worlds shares with the famous Lego bricks.
As far as I know, there aren't many "mainstream" generic RPGs on the market. Off the top of my head I can only name a few: GURPS, Fudge and to some extent, D20 and BRP (while they have capabilities of being generic systems, the main focus is on a certain game like D&D or Call of Cthulhu). The majority of RPGs available, and this is especially true in brick and mortar gaming stores, are complete games: rules + setting.
What I am aiming at is, that the average or a new roleplayer is only familiar with the "ready made product" approach. And by this extent, when they are using Savage Worlds, they only use it to play certain games (Deadlands, Beasts & Barbarians and what-not). While there is nothing wrong with this approach, Savage Worlds has an extra wild card in it's sleeve: You can use this game the same way you would use Lego bricks.
Let me explain...
Remember when you used to play with Lego? I do. I had a box with all the components needed to build a plane, pirate ship or a moon buggy. I dumped all this stuff on the floor, and with the instructions in my hand, started building the toy shown on the box. Once I played with it enough, I built something else from those bricks. The plane was turned into a helicopter and pirate ship into an scurvy island fortress. The next step was to mix the sets. Making a pirate plane, or space pirates!
I have a very similar approach to Savage Worlds. The Wild Card I was talking about before is "compatibility". Just like all Lego bricks can connect to one another, so can Savage Worlds setting books. Each book is like a box of Lego bricks. And there is a ton of those boxes out there! On the Savage Insider website you can find a list of all the official and licensed settings. This does not include all the fan projects that you can find. That's a lot of "boxes", each with a set of interesting "bricks". No matter what type of game you fancy playing - cowboy vs aliens, xcom rpg, urban fantasy - you can find boxes or just the bricks that will fit your needs.
There is a lot more to it, than just genre-mashing. Sometimes you can add a single "brick" to change the entire feel of the game (like adding Gritty Damage to a High Fantasy game). Want more variety? An Edge or a Hindrance from a different setting, maybe particular equipment or magic variant strikes your fancy? Why not add it to your game? As long as the rest of the group is fine with it, it can lead only to more fun.
Go and check places like Savagepedia or Savage Heros. Don't be afraid to experiment. Find what you like and play something you will enjoy.
I know that this approach is nothing new for many gamers, but I hope that some of you might find it interesting and worth trying.