Ok my original question was apparently too vague and raised question marks about my problem with the power curve in 3.5. I won't explain why I don't like 3.5 since that's not the point of my question. I'll simply reformulate my question.
I've been playing 3.5 and Pathfinder for over 6 years now and I recently got tired of rule-intensive systems after playing Mutants and Masterminds for a while. What I like of Mutants and Masterminds:
- Combat is not tactical. No grid, no attack of opportunity etc.
- All the combat rules are covered in couples of pages.
- The list of conditions for your character (sickened, shaken etc.) is shorter and more intuitive since the numbers are consistent.
- The system doesn't have any classes so you don't have to fit into a box of preselected features.
- Game is point-buy so players can create their own characters with no other limits than their creation point budget and the campaign frame.
I could use Mutants and Masterminds as a system for a fantasy game but that wouldn't be appropriate. Mostly like using Exalted to play a game where all players are humble farmers. Scalability problem etc.
So now I would like to start a fantasy game with a system that correspond the following criteria:
- Fast combat
- Combat is not tactical
- No classes so player can create their character the way they want
- The books are still available somehow (free pdf, still in print etc.)
- The system can cover any genre from vanilla D&D (Middle-Earth-esque) to Steam Punk + magic.
- System must not be bound to a setting (like Exalted or L5R where you need to select a clan or an element of the setting that would determine features for your character).