It’s Tuesday, and time again for our time-honored tradition… get a bunch of role playing games from across the Internet without paying for them?
(Does anyone notice that I didn’t strike that out?)
The blogroll this week saw a preponderance of free RPG games, so rather than pontificate on the state of the RPG blogosphere, I thought I’d do my public service announcement by aggregating the links I saw in one place. And finally, when you finish reading these free games, it will be time to take over the world!.
Free Games Galore!
Thief: The Role Playing Game
I played a ton of video games in college. Most of them were bad. Then came ‘Thief,’ which I bought for two very bad reasons–first, the box was a weird shape (like two trapezoids connected on their short side), and second, it was published by Eidos Interactive- whose logo I recognized from Final Fantasy VII for the PC.
Not that any of you care about that. The point is, I got lucky. Thief turned out to be a great game. It took the core idea of the first-person shooter, and added stealth as a component to it. Your character wandered a renaissance-era town going on missions to pilfer and assassinate. I don’t remember too much of the story, but the gameplay was thrilling.
“Fictive” over at Between Are the Doors has converted Thief to a pencil-and-paper RPG, and is giving it away for free. Check it out.
Thief: The Role Playing Game from Between Are the Doors
I’ll admit it: although I’ve been a lifelong fan of Kung Fu movies, I’ve never played a role playing game in that setting. And why not? More than virtually any non-Tolkein-esque fantasy, the fantasy Kung Fu world seems to feature that mainstay of RPGs: the adventuring party! The slighted warrior boy from the village that has been razed by the evil warlord travels to find the drunken master, and on the way meets the blind mystic and the good-hearted swindler who is being chased out of another city.
That beats the hell out of “You meet in a tavern…” any day.
And I’ve gotta say, the OSR model feels perfect for this sort of game. You’ve got an “anything goes” rule set primed to have the GM let you run up the side of a tree to jump on the dragon’s head. Of course, you can do this with the d20 system, but it’ll take an hour and 17 page references to resolve. I’m looking forward to giving this one a try.
Flying Swordsmen Role Playing Game from What a Horrible Night to Have a Curse
Something Went Wrong
This game takes the standard Tolkein-esque adventuring party and introduces a Breaking Bad-esque “all hell breaks loose” concept to it.
In all seriousness, this is a game of encounters–the role playing is incidental (which is to say, as much or as little as you want of it). The clever hook here is that players rotate the GM role, and use in-game experience to run encounters designed to have the other player characters fall flat on their faces.
It comes across as an RP-inspired board game, and looks like it’d be a fun way to kill a couple of hours. This can go on the same shelf as Munchkin and Gamma World 4E.
Something Went Wrong from Troll in the Corner
Advanced Adventure Modules
OSR games modules are still the best modules out there. It’s awesome to see that there are still a lot of them being made, and even cooler to see some very high quality ones being given away for free.
If you subscribe to the Sorcery & Super Science blog and post a comment in the linked thread, you’ll get a free Advanced Adventures OSR module. I’ve not used these modules, but I’ve used other products from Expeditious Retreat Press (including their phenomenal Medieval City product), and the quality is top shelf. I’m definitely looking forward to going through one of these modules.
A Free Advanced Adventure PDF of Your Choice from Sorcery and Super Science
Also from the Sorcery and Super Science blog comes Worlds Apart, an adaption of the Traveller OGL product to high-seas adventure. My gaming group can tell you I’ve been lusting after a Traveller adventure for some time, and this game only adds to my gamer ADD. Joseph at S&SS has meticulously gone through Traveller (how else can one go through Traveller, really?) and converted aspects of it to this alternate setting.
Free Game of the Week – Worlds Apart from Sorcery and Super Science (link to free game on RPG Now)
Finally, a free game of sorts from my Intwischa co-authors Bryan and Chase. They’ve taken the elements of Fate 3.0 as seen in Dresden Files RPG and adapted them to the classic (dare I say it one more time in this article) Tolkein-esque fantasy setting.
I have a lot of D&D campaigns that have been shelved over the years, and one thing I’ve noticed about Fate is that it’s a great system to revivify a shelved game and get the story out much more quickly than D&D rules seem to allow. I’ll no doubt be using these rules to give a few indefinite-hiatus games some much-needed conclusion.