Category Archives: Other Systems

Some free games I found at RPGNow

I am looking for new and exciting games. A simple and cheap way to try out some new games or to at least broaden your horizon is to check RPGNow‘s free game downloads.

Labyrinth Lord (Link)
Labyrinth Lord is one of these new retro-clone games that try to emulate the classic D&D experience by using the OGL fantasy rules.

Labyrinth LordEnter a world filled with labyrinths, magic, and monsters! You can take the role of a cleric, dwarf, elf, fighter, halfling, magic-user, or thief on your quest for glory, treasure, and adventure! This is a complete role playing game. All you need are a few sheets of paper and some dice. Welcome back to a simpler old-school gaming experience. The Labyrinth Lord awaits your arrival. Can you survive the dangers of the labyrinth?


OSRIC (Link)

Another retro-clone (these are obviously very popular these days) is OSRIC. And OSRIC is not for the faint of heart. This PDF gives you over 400 pages of old-fashioned crunch for the grognard in all of us. 🙂

OSRICOSRIC is an OGL product, using OGC terms and algorithms from 1980s game systems, to recreate the “old-school feel” of 80s fantasy gaming. This product is meant primarily as a publisher resource for publishing products compatible with OSRIC, and thus other 80s game systems. However, this work is a great resource for players and game masters as well! 




SLA Industries (Link)
SLA Industries was an urban horror game produced by Nightfall Games. When Cubicle 7 Entertainment took over, they released a free PDF version of the 1st edition rules in order to promote the coming 2nd edition. If you are a fan of the original SLA Industries or just interested in another take on the urban horror genre check this out.

SLA IndustriesOperative, Employee, Contract Killer, Necanthrope, Ebon, Biogenetic, Corporate. These are the lifestyles available to you when you enter SLA Industries’ World of Progress.

Society split between truth and deception, conflict and political subversion, style and horror. Television and Insanity. Fighting for your life as an oblivious public watches on, awaiting your last breath between the adverts.

The media channels all the young hopefuls into their vessels. Nihilism is a way of life. Strive for originality in a world of outrage and conformity and diversity. The different get noticed, the truly original survive.

Six o’clock horror, every hour on the hour. Halloween Jack claims another victim. Fifteen minutes of fame for the corpse. Don’t get famous like him. Change. Become. Evolve. This is the way forward.

The Big Picture rewards the loyal. Be true to yourself. Survive. The truth awaits the inquisitive.

Guns kill but so does the truth.


Tri-Stat dX (Link)
One of my most favorite games that I never played was “Big Eyes, Small Mouth” aka BESM. BESM is an anime roleplaying game, a RPG where you can play characters who feel like if they jumped out of your favorite anime or manga. But the Tri-Stat system was much more versatile than simulation japanese cartoon characters. So Guardians of Order released Tri-Stat dX, a core rule set, meant to drive any campaign you could dream of. The rules are pretty good but alas GoO closed its doors shortly before BESM 3rd Edition was released.

Tri-Stat dXWidely regarded as one of the best rules-light role-playing game systems ever published (as presented in over a dozen RPGs), the Tri-Stat Systemis the ideal game engine for all your campaign needs. Featuring a scalable system, point-based character creation, and intuitive combat and task resolution, Tri-Stat dX: Core System is an inexpensive exploration into essential and advanced role-playing techniques and methods. It’s the only role-playing game you’ll ever need.


CJ Carrella’s WitchCraft (Link)
Witchcraft is a game of modern magic from EDEN Studios. They obviously have sold that game for $35.00 at one time, but now they are making it available for free. I haven’t had the time to read the rules and background completely but the artwork at least is worth the download. 

WitchcraftWitchCraft is a game of modern magic and dark secrets. Player characters are the Gifted. Feared for their unique powers, they have been hounded for centuries, and forced to practice their Arts in secret. The time for hiding is over. A Time of Reckoning draws near. It marks the end of an era and the beginning of a new one or the destruction of all things. The choices the Gifted make will determine what our future will be like.

WitchCraft is a complete roleplaying game, with rules to create Gifted and Mundane characters, an overview of a modern world beset by supernatural danger, and the Unisystem, a set of game mechanics that can use dice, cards or be completely story-driven to fit the needs and desires of your gaming group. 


There are of course a lot more interesting freebies available at sites like RPGNow and the like. I just picked a few that seemed particularly interesting and well made. Did I miss anything that’s dear to your heart? Have you actually played one of those games and perhaps you can even share your thoughts? If so, please let your voices be heard in the comments.

Swashbucklers of the 7 Skies

One of the RPG Blogs I’ve subscribed in Google Reader is the german blog Rollenspiel-Almanach. Today a post about Swashbucklers of the 7 Skies grabbed my attention. I actually haven’t heard of that game before but I immediately saw flying ships and sky pirates in my mind’s eye. The post linked to a post by Evil Hat Publishing’s Fred Hicks who is obviously working on the layout of this upcoming game where he showcases two fully layouted pages. 


So, what’s Swashbucklers of the 7 Skies about? Here’s an excerpt from the Atomic Sock Monkey website:

Skyships ply the 7 Skies, soaring from Cloud-Island to Cloud-Island for conquest, espionage, trade, and piracy. Kingdoms clash, cultures collide, and secrets abound. Heroes and villains roam Above the Blue, seeking action, intrigue, adventure, and style. Will you be one of them?

Swashbucklers of the 7 Skies
*Written by Chad Underkoffler
*Art by Greg Holkan & Scott Kane
*Layout by Fred Hicks

Wow, that sounds really intriguing! The game is driven by the Prose Descriptive Qualities (PDQ) System Core Rules which reminded me a bit of FATE. I had to admit that I haven’t had the time to check the PDQ rules out completely but PDQ’s Qualities (or Fortes as they are called in PDQ#, the Swashbuckling version of PDQ) have a lot in common with FATE’s Aspects, but that’s perhaps just me. You can get both the PDQ and PDQ# rules as free PDF documents on the Atomic Sock Monkey website’s Freebies section.

Map for my Dungeonslayers campaign

Since my group wants to continue playing Dungeonslayers, I’ve decided to create a small campaign world to play in. It’s nothing fancy of course but it’s just enough information to use as a nice backdrop for a dungeon delving campaign. And since we want to keep up a light-hearted approach to roleplaying, I’ve added a few eastereggs, made sure the names were at least a bit cheesy and even included hommages to Gary Gygax, the creator of DS, Christian Kennig, and D&D. Check out the map I created this morning with the simple map creation tool that came with the AD&D Core Rules CD-ROM. Although this tool is quite old and lacks a lot of features it’s still the best way to create simple campaign maps.

DS Campaign Map

The map shows the kingdom of Sturmfeste (Stormhold). The town Belseburg is the place where my group fought those rats and destroyed the altar of the rat king. You will probably remember that from my last post. The world itself is of my creation but I will probably rip-off a few elements from my favorite MMO World of Warcraft. So expect some gun-wielding dwarves, tech-tinkering goblins and an army of orcs coming through some wierd portal…