Wednesday, 28 October 2015


So a while back I posted about a simple 3 die (one page paragraph) RPG system. Read it here. So i've got another one - it's a little bit longer, but whatev's yo'.

Each character has 3d20, one for Body, Mind and Soul. These are Effort die. Players roll these die to to complete tasks, they need to roll a 4 or higher to succeed at any task - but if they do succeed they lose that die. A player can 'split' the d20's up, turning them into 2d10 or a d12 and a d8. Whatever combination of d4's to d12's they can - and they can 'reform' die together whenever too. Some tasks have an minimum level of effort, requiring a minimum Effort die to be rolled to accomplish the task, for example a d6 or a d20. Tools give you an advantage, increasing any Effort die to the next highest one d8 to a d10 for example. When you run out Effort die in any area you can no longer contribute to the adventuring until you have rested.

Wednesday, 21 October 2015


I've been very busy writing #HIVELIFE1979 so my time spent here on my blog has really dried up, but there's something I wanted to post for both you and for me. Whilst I don't think there's an absolute formula for a successful 'scripted' adventure - I know if I can get what I write to do the following things, its going to work on a primal 'reason to be engaged and get some closure' level.  It's just a skeleton, if the meat on the bones is shit, then the whole experience will leave a bad taste - but if you pack loads of imaginative and fun things that happen and the players can do, you're onto a winner.

It follows a basic scriptwriting technique of 8 steps (or key scenes)

1 - Status Quo & Inciting Incident  - The  world is shown to the players and they're told where they fit into it. Something happens that propels them to step 2

2 - Predicament & Lock In - The thing that happened at the end of the last scene now leaves the players with a problem or conflict they have to sort out. Their first step towards this goal puts them on a path they cant easily get off.

3 - First Obstacle & Raising the stakes - The characters must overcome the first step towards their goal this could be a medium sized dungeon or wilderness/urban area, also a number of options or resources should be taken away from them.

4 - First Culmination - The reason options have been removed in step 3 should be resolved, and it should be a harder task than they tackled before. Tone is important here, it should mirror the tone of the desired outcome and overall adventure.

5 - Subplot & Raising the stakes - The players will thank you for a little distraction, not too far off course but something thats not directly pivotal to the main plot, but is connected somehow. A great place to weave in some setting or story exposition. Continue to remove options or resources.

6 - Main Culmination - This is where the players deal with the final threat, the BBEG or whatever. They think they're done, this should mirror the vibe going on in step 4. Also you could give them some inkling its not quite over.

7 - New Tension and/or Twist - Everyone loves an encore, or facing the puppet master - the players should figure it all out and deal with that shit here.

8 - Resolution - They all live happily ever after, or do they? This doesn't even need to be played (although its fun to do it, but make it quick) just wrap up the events of the game with a short and concise 'read aloud box' if you want - players wont feel cheated as they should have had the satisfying ending of step 7.

Some further advice I've been thinking about. Some people will tell you scripted adventures are shit as you've got a railroad for the players to run on. I don't think thats the case if you do a couple of things. Plan what the bad guys are going to do - and plan what happens if the players don't stop them. The rest you make up at the table.

Wednesday, 16 September 2015



Gangs & Factions
The Sheriff of Slough
Warlord Tony and the Smiley Boys
Yabber Boys
Rotterdam Terror Crew
Waste Nomads
Petrol Heads
Civil Servants
Womens Institute
The Bakers Dozen

Robots & Monsters
Flick-Knife Kids
Lusardi Bot
Cassette Face Bastard
Void Frogs
Psychic Diseases
Giant Slug
Fish Guys
Phasic Ameoba
A.I. in Mundane Objects

Special Individuals
Duke of Peckham
Nanna Hood
Donny Muurda
Tinfoil Brothers
Andy the Automaton

The Black Snake
Asbestos Sisters

Tuesday, 8 September 2015


Local produce for local people. Mostly speed - but in the summer we do a roaring trade in petrol and jam-jars. Nanny Hood runs the 'charity' shop with her merry fucking men and Dale's gone mad seein' invisible frogs. Open Monday to Friday, closed at the weekends due to rogue traffic-works.

Also rules are down and in somewhat of a final state, nows the time to play-test the shit out of them. Drop a name in the comments so I can get a schedule of games going. #HIVELIFE1979

Monday, 31 August 2015


I made this whilst brainstorming rules for #HIVELIFE1979 (oh you haven't heard yet?) and came up with this as a fun experiment, kind of inspired by Ultima Online, what I played far too much of as a kid and +Oli Palmer. Not sure if this is ripping something off, I just needed to get it out of my brain.

Every character has 3 stats, Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence, assign a d6, d8 and d12 to each. You roll one of those die when testing your attributes - needing a 5-7 for success, or 8-12 for success with a benefit. Everyone has HP equal to the max Strength Die. Each hit in combat deals 1 wound, 2 with Heavy weapons. Resolve landing hits as you would an attribute test. You can get armour die, d4 or d6, when you take a hit roll it, if you roll 4+ you ignore the damage.Wizards make up their own spells because they're wizards. Thieves get a +1 to any roll once per turn. Warriors start with 2 extra HP.


Friday, 21 August 2015

HIVE LIFE 1979 - its a thing.

"Come friendly bombs and fall on Slough!

It isn't fit for humans now,

There isn't grass to graze a cow.

Swarm over, Death!"

Slough - by John Betjeman. 1937


The Iron Lady rules from Deep Bunker One, 3 miles below London's crater. The year is 1979 and welcome to Slough, the last remaining Hive city in Britain. Don't wander into the Ash waste. And yes, you too can experience the luxury of life inside a compulsory residency hive-facility.

The Tinfoil Brothers extort the market traders downtown, while Donny Muurda sells prohibited weapons from his bedsit compound. Yabber boys drive-by corners over dope and the punks, 2-Tones and greebos compete for tinnies of air at the Disco of Death.

Treasure maps scribbled in Porno mags, Gang warfare, Radioactive Slugs, Slag pits, Psychotic vending machines,Violence, Profuse apologies and Robot car-bombs are a part of daily life here.

And all the while the hive heaves upwards building on its waste, burying the past. 600 years of movement is a lot to forget, treasures from the Renaissance wait amongst unnameable terror for the daring - or desperate to find. Life can be short in Slough, whether you take a chance or not.