Monday, April 13, 2020


Been a hot minute.

I can be one of those people who gets distracted and starts putting things off, and then the next thing you know it's been long enough, what's the point of going back?

Well I'm back.

Mind Body Soul

  • This game is supposed to be about ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances.
  • Each Player Character is represented by three Stats: Mind, Body, and Soul.
  • To successfully perform any challenging task in the game, you must roll under your corresponding Stat.
  • Each Stat starts at 3, but you can raise a Stat by subtracting from another. No Stat may be increased higher than 5, and no Stat may be decreased lower than 2.
  • Choose a Profession for your character, anything that fits with the game's setting. When you attempt a challenging task that can somehow be related to your Profession, you roll twice and take the best.
  • Each character has 3 Hitpoints and 3 Brainpoints. Physical damage hurts a character's Hitpoints, and psychological damage hurts a character's Brainpoints.
  • You can recover Hitpoints with Medicine and Brainpoints with Stress relief. The exact definition of Stress Relief is determined by the game's setting.
  • And because I wasn't clear, the game is played with a single d6.
Normal people in extraordinary circumstances can be a lot of things. Survivors in a zombie apocolypse, dungeon explorers. The characters in the first Alien movie fit the bill.

Let me know if this works for ya'll.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Half-Men Classes for LotFP

Been a minute. Life gets busy and what not.


I've always liked Half-Orcs. I remember working with my dad out in the midwest painting barns when I was a kid and he first told us about what Dungeons & Dragons was. I'd played my share of Warcraft 1 and 2 by that point, so I knew what an Orc was, but the idea of one that was crossbred with a human caught my attention like hell. My first ever D&D character was a Half-Orc named Uganon, back in the 3.5 days, for the first couple of sessions while we got to know the game. Later I remade him for my older brother's campaign and fleshed him out a bit more. I've still got his mini floating around here somewhere . . .

Anways, I wanted to introduce Half-Orcs into LotFP for my group, so I knocked something together real quick. Nothing fancy, but here ya go:

  • Raised by Humans
    • Fight, Level, and Save as a Fighter
  • Raised by Orcs
    • Level and Save as a Fighter, Fight as my previous Barbarian class, including penalties for being over-encumbered
  • Can see better in dim conditions 
  • 4-in-6 Chance to Intimidate. Self explanatory, you could always roll an at-or-under check for something like this, but I figured Half-Orcs should have an easier time of being scary as fuck than other raises and shouldn't have to roll on a 20 for that.
  • 50% Chance of causing a -2 penalty for all reaction rolls for the group they're  adventuring with. Flip a coin


I'm a bit less enamored with Half-Elves. Not a particulary big fan of Elves at all, if I'm being honest. But I like options, so I threw this together real quick.
  • Raised by Humans
    • Level and Save as an Elf, Fight like  a Fighter. Makes sense in my head. Human kids picking on picking on them as they grew up, they learned how handle themselves in a scrap.
  • Raised by Elves
    • Level and Save as an Elf. Fight and do magic like  a magic-user. Not as innately capable as a full blooded elf, but still capable of throwing around spells.
  • 3-in-6 Chance for Stealth. Raised by whatever, maybe a Half-Elf gets pretty decent at keeping a low profile. Can't get picked on or beat up if they can't find you, right?

Monday, July 29, 2019

Angry Mob, an LotFP class

The Angry Mob

So I loved this Extras class for B/X and wanted to do my own take for LotFp. Fair warning, this thing is unplaytested and probably not too balanced. It was intended as a joke class, but I put too much energy into its creation not to post it.

  • You are literally an angry mob of unleveled peons. You are pissed off peasants, fuming farmers and fishermen, commoners catalyzed into action by the unfair cruelty of the world surrounding you, and your desire to mete out justice, or at least to earn enough coin to assuage your malcontent.
  • Level and save as a dwarf
  • 1st level HD 6, minimum of 4
  • Each hit point represents an individual member of your angry mob. 
  • You cannot regain hp by resting or by healing spells. Mobs only regain hp by entering a town and inciting other peasants into joining up. Rescuing prisoners/slaves/hostages may also be used to rejuvenate hp.
  • 4-in-6 chance of Open Door. You have a lot of bodies to throw at it. If your hp drops below 4, your Open Door chance drops to match it. So an Angry Mob with 2 hp now has a 2-in-6 chance.
  • With a minimum of 4 people attacking an enemy, someone is bound to land a hit. Attack Bonus is your Strength modifier + 1d4
  • You are, however, just a bunch of angry peasants adventuring in the clothes on their backs and fighting with farm implements. You are unable to equip armor and default to the base Armor Class of 12. You also can't equip weapons, and deal 1d4 worth of damage per hit.
  • At level 3, its assumed your Angry Mob have managed to scrounge up a hodge podge of equipment in the course of their adventures. This guy found a helmet, and that lady found a cracked, but servicable shield. Someone got their hands on a sword or spear. Your AC is now 14, and you deal damage as 1d6
  • At level 5, one member of your mob has gained enough experience as an adventurer to take a class, fighter, magic-user, or cleric. If you choose a caster class, you may cast at half your Angry Mob's level rounding up. If you choose fighter, you get AC 16 and deal damage as 1d8.
  • At level 7, another member of your Mob may take a class. Choosing the same class results in doubling your spell slots for casters, and increasing your Attack Bonus for fighter by 1.
  • Classed members of your mob are assumed always to be the last to die. If you are reduced to 1 hp and have at least one classed character and survive the encounter that led to your Mob's decimation, you may choose to turn this classed member into an individual character at half your Angry Mob's level, rounding up. This applies to as many classed members as you have hp left. So two classed members,  2 hp left, you may make 2 individual characters. From then on, these characters are no longer members of an Angry Mob and level normally as their class.

Forlorn Hope! The Landsknecht RPG

Beside the definition of sex in the dictionary.

You are elite, German mercenaries in the 15th century! Fight or flirt deep behind enemy lines to mete out justice for gold and glory! 

  1. Pick a good, strong, German name for your character
  2. Decided your stats:
    • Two stats, Mercenary and Fabulous. Start with 3 in both.
    • Mercenary covers all physical activities (fighting, sneaking, acrobatics)
    • Fabulous covers all charisma based activities (sweet talking, negotiating)
    • You may subtract from one stat to add to the other.
    • When attempting an activity governed by being a  Mercenary or being Fabulous, you must roll at or under your stat to succeed.
    • No stat can be less than 1
  3. Decide your Background:
    • Criminal - Subtract 1 from all rolls dealing with being a brigand (sneaking, conning, robbing)
    •  Noble - Subtract 1 from all rolls dealing with royalty or other nobility
    • Soldier's Son - Gain 1 Wound Slot
    • Every Man - Once a day, subtract 1 from any 1 roll of your choice.
  4. Every character has 3 Wounds Slots. If hit, take a wound. If you are out of slots, you're dead.
  5. Describe your silly flaunting of sumptuary laws.
  6. Get rich or die trying! Landsknecht who survive their mission gain an extra Wound Slot and earn a point of riches! Reach ten points and retire to a life of luxury.

Steal a  . . .
1. Chest of Gold
2. Enemy Communique
3. Arsenal of Weapons
4. Rival's spouse
5. Plot of Land
6. More Mercenaries.

Kill a  . . .
1. Rival Baron
2. Rival Landsknecht Rot, and their veteran commander
3. Local Bandit
4. Corrupt Bishop
5. Terrible Beast
6. Town's Sheriff

Friday, July 26, 2019

Act Natural or We Die

A while back I watched a neat little horror short called Act Natural or We Die

The concept is exactly how it sounds. I liked it, so I made a game out of it.

  1.  Who are you? Maybe you're you. Maybe you're someone else. Maybe you are many, or maybe just a few. In any case, think about your favorite memory. Think about your worst nightmare. Write these down on two slips of paper. Keep your memory to cherish. Pass your nightmare to the player on your right.
  2. You and your friends/ acquaintance/business associates share an apartment/house/castle/bunker. It is haunted. The nature of the haunting is up to you.
  3. The goal of the game is to act natural. Failure to do so means you die.
  4. The game is broken up into Days. Each day is broken up into turns. On Day 1, every player takes 1 turn. On Day 2, every player takes 2 turns. On day 3, every player takes 3 turns, and so on, so forth.
  5. During their turn, the player must narrate where they are in the apartment/house/castle/bunker, and what they are doing there. Then the player to their right narrates what the monster/ghost/demon/alien is doing within the vicinity to cause a reaction.
  6. A reactions is gauged by rolling 1d6. Upon a 2-6, you have successfully acted natural. A roll of 1 means you have become tense, and gained a point of tension. 
  7. Each point of tension is added to your failure threshold on reaction rolls, meaning with 1 point of tension, you now gain tension on a roll of 1 or 2. With two points of tension, you now gain tension on rolls of 1, 2, or 3. A natural, unmodified roll of 6, however, decreases your points of tension by 1.
  8. At 6 points of tension, you snap and are unable to act natural. You die a gruesome, untimely death.
  9. Once a game, you may remember your favorite memory. This eases your nerves, and allows you to add 1 to your reaction roll. Once a game, the player to your right may invoke your worst nightmare into their narration, and you must subtract 1 from your reaction roll.
  10. The game is over on the final Day; all are dead but one, who must complete her or his remaining turn(s). If he or she succeeds, the haunting is over, and the surviving player wins.

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

The Saddest Killbot, a micro rpg

Two posts in one day! Probably as active as I'm ever going to be here, but here you go.

The Saddest Killbot

  • You are a soulless, bloodthirsty, killing machine who suffers from depression because you are a soulless, bloodthirsty, killing machine.
  • You may make one of two actions: KIll or COMMUNICATE. Both actions are resolved by rolling a single d6
  • If a KILL action is declared, then the KILL happens automatically regardless of what you rolled, but a roll of 1 means you gain a point of depression.
  • If a COMMUNICATE action is declared, a roll of 2 or greater is a success. A roll of 1 is a failure, and you gain a point of depression and must make a KILL action.
  • Each point of depression increases the failure threshold of COMMUNICATE actions and the rate of depression points gained for KILL actions. So if you have 1 point of depression a roll of 1 and 2 mean you fail to COMMUNICATE and you gain a point of depression for a roll of 1 or 2 for either action.
  • If you gain 6 points of depression, you have an existential crisis and you suffer a blue screen of death, rendering you useless and unable to make any action.

Kids on Bikes as OSR?

I collect RPG manuals like its going out of style (as if our particular nerd niche has ever been in style). Realistically, this is my hobby. Actually playing is more of a reaction, or a side effect. That's fine though; its still fun for me. I like learning new mechanics, I like looking at the art, I like reading the flavor. I like that flash of excitement I get when I day dream about actually getting a chance to run a new game.

So I've ended up with a lot more games and gaming material that I can ever really hope to use. Considering that, knowing I likely am never going to actually get to use what I pick up, I don't really consider a games usability when I do pick it up. Sounds silly, I know. It might be something outside my groups typical interests, but I like the actual craft of RPG creation, seeing what people put together, how they justify their mechanics and so on. So I guess I tend to also buy books that are outside of my own interests as well.

So that kind of sums up how I ended up with  a copy of Kids on Bikes sitting on my shelf for the better part of  a year.

Kids on Bikes is a narrative heavy system designed to run games in the veins of Stranger Things, IT, The Goonies, so forth and on. Great name, by the way. "Kids on Bikes" perfectly encapsulates, in my opinion, exactly the genre its going for.

As a niche game type within a niche hobby, it caught me by surprise to find a copy anywhere but the internet. Matter of fact, if I hadn't ran across a copy in the wild, I probably never would have picked it up. Yeah, collecting systems/playbooks may comprise the bulk of my interaction with the hobby, but I'm also a family man and have to be at least a tab bit responsible for my purchases. But there its was on the shelf, so what can you do? No shipping costs, at least. 

I meant to tear into it immediately, its not a long book. In fact, when I finally sat down to read it, it took one sitting. Life got in the way though. I picked it up right around the time of the latter stages of my wife's pregnancy, and I took a step back from running games in preparation for the birth of my son. No way I could even run bi-weekly after he was born, and I drifted out of the world of table top role playing games, didn't resume for about six months after we welcomed him into the world. After I picked back up with my group again, it was only episodic one shots using mostly LotFP, and a game of Maze Rats

Only recently did I decide to jump head first into my back log, and KoB was the lightest book in my collection. I figured it was as good a place to start as any.

I pretty much fell in love. But not for the reasons you'd think.

The interest I have in running a KoB game within its implied genre is next to none. The Goonies is a classic, of course, but I haven't seen enough of Stranger Things to form a valid opinion of it, and I don't really have any desire to. IT was a great book, and the older mini series had its ups and downs, but I didn't care for the first part of the newer film at all. So I didn't fall in love because I had any interests in doing with the system what it was intended to be used for, but because I could clearly envision the rules supporting play in the typical worlds my group and I visit.

I'm not getting into exactly what makes a game OSR. A few people I've seen floating around the internet insist that a game isn't OSR unless its derived from the earlier editions of Dungeons and Dragons. That's fine. Look at it how you want. But the term Old School to me embodies more than just a specific game type, but rather a mentality that can be applied to any sort of different games. I mentioned Maze Rats further up; its not derived from D&D at all, but its still fueled by the sort of free form game play, player skill, and off the cuff rulings I've experienced through running the aptly named retroclones. If Maze Rats isn't OSR, then its at least OSR adjacent. 

In a similar sense, after reading through the rules of KoB, I think it can be easily hacked to run dungeons (and isn't hack-ability another standard of the OSR scene?)

I had the misconception for some reason that KoB was the type of game that told cute little stories where everything in the end boiled down to sunshine and rainbows. Death as a mechanic never even occurred to me as something that would come packaged within. I was not only wrong, but clearly wrong as fuck. And stupid. Considering the shows it emulates, KoB doesn't shy away from PC death at all. Combat encounters can be down right brutal. A goal is set like in other TTRPGs and the player rolls against it. The difference between the goal and the roll is the degree of success or failure, and very shitty failures can mean the end in life or death situations. 


I love lethality in my games. Not because I want to my players to die over and over again, but the exact opposite. I want my players to do their absolute best to not die. I want them to exercise their brains and pop out ideas that can negate rolling entirely. I've been surprised and amazed at how great some of the players I have are at coming with solutions to seemingly impossible circumstances, all at the drop of a hat. So if they can think their way around an obstacle in Maze Rats or LotFP, why not in KoB?

Creating character in KoB is as simple as assigning die to particular stats, which are rolled against the challenge goal of a particular task. I don't want to get into specifics because you should honestly buy the book; its great and affordable. But from what I've read, I don't see how the stats can't be used to cover the same sort of challenges you might come across in a dungeon. There are some stats that could be potentially used as dumps, but that also depends on the type of game you are running. If you were running a more story based game a la Burning Wheel, (which is technically the type of game KoB is supposed to be used for in the first place), those stats are still perfectly usable.

KoB has rules for playing as children, teens or adults, easily convertible, lets say, to the Tolkien races of elf, dwarf, and halfling. You could probably come up with more for other races or what have you if you sat and worked it out.

One of my favorite things about KoB is the collaboratively controlled Powered Character. Eleven from Stranger Things. Sloth from the Goonies. You work out the specifics of the character and the players control this character as a unit. So your magic user or cleric, or psion even. There's nothing stopping you from using the powers in the book for one individually ran character, but I'm taken by the idea of the players running the powered character RAW, personally.

I feel like I'm rambling, so I'm gonna wrap this up. What I think I'm gonna do is use the KoB rules to run my guys through something, and see how it goes. I'll report back.