Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Dungeon World!

It's been a while since I've posted, but it happens, ya know? I haven't had a lot of opportunity to sit down and read a good RPG for quite some time, that is, quite some time before last week. In the past five days I've spent every quiet moment I have shredding through the 400+ pages of my Kickstarter backer pdf copy of Dungeon World. After getting through the whole thing my first reaction is to kick myself in the but for only backing at the $25.00 mark for the softcover version. I don't know if I could have justified the $65.00 for the hardcover, but I sure would like to get my hands on one.

Like all good games, the first thing I wanted to do with DW after reading it was modify it and make it my own. I originally envisioned my DW game going a lot like the Image Comics series Skullkickers. The art style is friendly to the comic, and the two seem to be made for each other.

Then I got to thinking more about a game I could run better than anyone else in my group - a Middle Earth game. I started thinking about running a game in the middle of the Third Age when almost anything could happen and not impact cannon. I thought of fun unique classes such as Noldor Prince, Dunadan, Man of Rohan, etc.

This is what impressed me most with DW - it's flexible and deep enough to make me want to run both a slapstick, joke-riddled game of Skullkicking fun and a serious, high fantasy game of honor and heroics, and either is just as viable and actually reinforce-able with a couple of custom rule tweeks.

First, the game is simple for any single player but complex and incredibly tight when all the players and GM come together to play a game. Characters are dictated by the actions they take rather than the gear they carry. That's a big plus for me as well. Think about it: Aragorn has what some would consider magic in only a handful of items - Anduril, the banner crafted by Arwen, and the Palantir, but he was so great because of the actions he took in the War of the Ring.

I'm hoping to write up some character classes in the coming weeks just to run some game design calisthenics and hopefully contribute to the great amount of fan-produced DW material. In the meantime, take a click over to drivethrurpg and pick up this pdf for a paltry $10.00. You won't regret it.

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