Thursday, June 23, 2011

Dungeon Crawl Classics - Free RPG Day Starter - Quick Look

Let me warn you right away. I'm looking at the PDF version (still have my issue with 5 bucks for a PDF that was free in physical form last Saturday) and I have yet to give it a proper read thru. I've just done a virtual flip-thru.

The PDF is 18 pages. Taking off the front cover and rear ad from the total, we are at 16 pages. How do those 16 pages break down? Glad you asked.

The intro is a page long.

Flavor text is two pages long. One of those pages is a handful of words, white text on a black background. Skip this page if printing at home, its an ink killer.

Art takes up three full pages, which isn't a lot, but when you only have 16 pages to present 2 adventures, it's a sizable portion of your space.

Reviewing the basic mechanics of DCC takes another page. To use the enclosed adventures, you'll absolutely need the free DCC Beta.

The first adventure for the character swarm of newbies, takes up 5 pages - 4 text and 1 for the map. The map is gorgeous. It isn't your classic, grid style map but a piece of art unto itself.

The second adventure, for level 5 characters (high level play according to the blurb) is 4 pages - 3 text and 1 for the map. Do I need to say it again? This map is also amazing.

The maps alone are nearly worth the price of admission.

Alright, I'll give this a read thru over lunch and give my thoughts on the actual adventures later.


  1. Meh, the thing seemed kind of skimpy to me. And the maps may be gorgeous, but how much of that is just sizzle and not steak? How functional are those maps, really? This to me is more evidence that, while the game is gorgeous art-wise and seems very playable/mechanically sound, there's this sense that Goodman Games is trying too hard to be...something. Trying too hard to be legit old school? If they're trying to do that, they that's setting themselves up for a big burst hype bubble.

    Why? Let's be honest here, and admit that for most of us the definition of old school is a moving target and thankfully open to very broad interpretation. Every gamer in the OSR basically has their own definition, with those definitions having some commonalities of course.

    I am wondering if Goodman is trying to make the DCC the OSR game for EVERYONE. The game that will unite the clans, so to speak, under one ruler. They might be trying to pander to every type of old school gamer, and that to me is an impossibility, a futile effort if there ever was one. I just don't think they can "fool" (or maybe "convince" is a better word) all of the people even some of the time...but maybe they can convince some of the people all of the time.

  2. $5 for a 18 page pdf will keep me away from this. Considering the Beta was for free I'd think that Goodman would still be in the stage where they want exposure to the game system more than short term profits.

    It is a shame because what I want most of all from the DCC line is more modules. I don't think they will need to convince anyone to buy their modules once they start cranking them out or their rule system.

    Since they are already a name and most OSR producers are not I can see them becoming the 500 pound gorilla of game systems in a short time.


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