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Northern Reaches 08 – Changing the Game

5e is fine. It’s fine.     
    But… It’s also a little boring and not dangerous (I will be taking no questions at this time).
    I have been playing with and investigating other RPGs to bolt onto this West Marches game. RPGs that add to context, not detract from it. There is a heap of games out there but this little list is the games I am thinking of running and how I will make it work in this campaign.


1. Dungeon Crawl Classics 

I have actually just run the first session with this system and it worked pretty well. But, first. Why this system?
    Because of the Level 0 Funnels.
    I fucking love these things. Player’s create 4 Level 0 characters, which can be done in seconds using this. You march the pitchfork-wielding peasants into almost certain death and turn the survivors into adventurers. A mob of 20 to 30 commoners armed with basic weapons going up against the horrors of the unknown. It’s great. 
    It’s also really well supposed and there is a tonne of adventures for it. There’s a really good quick start that you can get for free which makes it super easy to get players on board. 
    DCC is also goofy, fun, and almost always has connections to extremely wild and out-there themes and ideas. For example, The Portal Under the Star adventure, which comes with the core rule book, has an orb in it that allows the players to communicate with an intergalactic space goat who gives them a quest.
    It’s batshit and it’s awesome.

2. Kids on Bikes

This game is essentially Stranger Things the RPG. You play kids, teens, and sometimes adults who go off and investigate the strangeness in the world. 
    The book suggests who can pick any decade and when I played we set our game in the 90s (cause we were all kids in the 90s). However, I think this could work excellently as in the Northern Reaches as an adventure in the town.
    I know this breaks the rules. Make town boring. However, in this case, it would only be a very small number of things, the adventurers do not care about the lives of the little children in town. It would give the players a chance to explore the town, and create it, and play something very different. It also eliminates the issue of playing a very different rules system and having to force it to fit into the world they’re in already. 
    Medieval-ish kids and teens exploring the town and the coast line and making friends with a very powerful being.
    I would have to wait until something happened in the main story to warrant some new power force living in the town, but I love and it will be a thing at some point. 


I’m actually not going to explain. Just get this book and run it.

4. Warlock!

Rules light low-magic RPG designed to replicate old school British RPGs. Well worth a look if haven’t check it out.
    I really like the career system. Essentially, you go through two basic careers before getting the master’s career. I see this as a game you could play in 3 mini-campaigns where everyday people from the village go out into the wilds to investigate something. 
    It really does have a fun and easy system which you can pick up and play. 

5. Troika!

This is a very strange game. The characters travel between spheres that float in a sort of astral sea and each one is completely different. A Very strange and free-flowing RPG. 
    I hadn’t thought about this game until I played the DCC game they got hold of the magical orb and spoke to the goat alien. That got me thinking about what else is connected to this world. Perhaps they have traveled into a dead sphere that is literally just this island. Or perhaps their whole world is on it.
    Not sure.
    But I am sure that this could easily be added now. It also has one of the simplest character creations and could easily be set up and played even for just a one-shot. 

That’s my thoughts. 

If you have any ideas about other systems that would work, drop them into the comments. 

If you would like to support my work and follow me on my journey into game design and writing you can support me on Patreon.

Long days and pleasant nights.

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July 2021
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