the wonder of role-playing games: reviews, solo rpgs, old-school & narrative games

28 Dec 2017

Friday Grab Bag: The Last for 2017

The last post for 2017 - wow. I found some free games and some interesting reads for you.
For next year I plan to write more reviews again (e.g., for Tatzelwurm). Thanks for reading my blog and for your support.
Have a Happy New Year!

Bookkeeping Notes: Some of the links below are affiliate links. If you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission. This commission comes at no extra cost to you. But please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them.

To Read

Alex Schroeder tells us What I like about the Old School.

David Schirduans recommends some games for two: Duet RPGs.


There is a nice free one-page Shoalmont D100/Warhammer Fantasy RPG Hack by Max Vanderheyden.

Dungeons & Bananas, the light-hearted dungeon-delving story game by Simon Petterson, got a (liberal) French translation.
What is Dungeons & Bananas?

It’s a cooperative GMless game where the players team up to beat the dungeon. It incorporates short-term tactical risk management (how much Trouble am I willing to risk on this roll?) as well as long-term strategic resource management (should I burn my Spotlight Banana now or should I save it for later?). But the core of the game is the creative challenges it poses the players. How do you get past the guards using your Fancy Hat and Impressive Climbing Skills, and how to you get injured in the process? How to you escape from the Zorgon warship using your Alien Artifact and your Psychic Powers? These kinds of creative challenges are super fun to meet and just as much fun to listen to.

Nathan Carmen created an ultra-lite RPG called Simple Scale System:

The core mechanic is pretty intuitive: Players make up their stats (similar to Risus). When performing an action, they roll a number of d10s equal to themost relevant stat. They choose the best d10 out of the bunch, and this represents how well the character did on a scale of 1 to 10. Check it out if you’re so inclined!

Lizards vs. Wizards (PWYW) “is a little rpg about playing talking lizards in a post-apocalyptic world” by James V. West.

Brian Holland’s The Ho Ho Ho Hack is a free, simple, festive RPG based on The Indie Hack by Scablands Press.

Love & Justice is a free magical girls Lasers & Feelings hack.

Solo RPG

Mythic Variations 2 by Tana Pigeon is out. The original Mythic GME is the granddaddy of solo engines. It is a tad complicated, and thus I don’t use it. But it had great ideas.

James Carr continues his solo play of Swords Without Master. I was always interested in playing this narrative Sword & Sorcery game: Blood Like Roses: Season 1, Episode 1, Scene 1.
And I’m happy to see my own Miso Solo System in action.


Eric Nieudan made a simple generic character sheet for old-school D&D: Grandaddy’s D&D Character Sheet.

And Max Vanderheyden made another neat small (and free) adventure with Lu Quade: Army of the Demon Ape (note: broken link).

It is the Princess’s birthday; she demanded the court Mage shrink the Royal Army so that she might use them as toys to play war. Before they could be returned to normal size the Mage turned traitor and sent word to the neighboring power that the land is undefended.

If you have an Amazon Echo, you can use it to play old-school D&D: Play OSR D&D on an Amazon Echo?.

#Patreon Michael Prescott is a wonderful patron now! Check out his beautiful adventures on He has a patreon, too.

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