What if there was a modular set for running without a GM?

What if there was a modular set for running without a GM?

What if there was a modular set for running without a GM?

If you’re like me, you’re either stuck always being the GM and never just getting to play, or you can only reliably get a couple people and the groups can run a little small. But I find that DW and World of Dungeons are already incredibly modular, with a lot of the play evolving naturally, including things that happen when I as the GM make a move . So I’m throwing together something very much like World of Dungeons that’s built for as few as two people to enjoy together, without a GM.

Functioning a lot like Perilous Wilds, it’ll basically be a big modular collection of tables for rolling on (at my table we may even keep a copy of PW on hand). Players roll for the weather, what they find, monsters, NPC temperaments, treasures, what happens as a hard or soft move — with the narrative freedom to limit actions to what makes fictional sense, of course.

There’ll be prompts for rumors, jobs, bounties, towns, people, creatures, events, wars, battles, politics — all springboards for play, with players collectively shouldering the burden of GMing.

I really only intend to use it at my table, though maybe with enough work it could become something I’d share on a wider scale — but this is what I’ve worked up so far, just this morning. I’m calling it Dungeonlords. What do you think?



15 thoughts on “What if there was a modular set for running without a GM?”

  1. Marshall Miller Technically you could play it all by yourself, although it’d require you to be very, very honest. But if you were using the prompts to write things down, yeah, I bet you could get a pretty fun story out of it, and it’d be great writing practice.

  2. Addramyr Palinor Yeah, I filled up a document with a bunch of empty pages because I wasn’t sure how much I’d need, and whenever I dropped in text boxes (I find them way easier to work with when doing long-term formatting like this) they would get moved around to the new pages.

    I’m sure there’s a better way to solve that problem, but hitting ctrl+enter a few times seemed pretty easy to me.

  3. I updated it — trimmed the empty space for the pdf, and had time to add in rules for how damage works.

    I think that is enough to play — now I just need to put in races, classes, skills, abilities, etc. Time to start cracking on some tables.

  4. Addramyr Palinor I’m going to start with custom tables, culled from Streets of Marienburg and other sources, but Perilous Wilds will definitely play a part in filling out things.

  5. Gerard Snow I have just updated it with another morning’s worth of work. Now the main rules section caps off with some advice on hacking and interpretation, and then I’ve started in on races, classes, etc. It’s up through page 10, ignore all the blanks after that.

    If anybody has advice on remaining race abilities, by the way, I’d love to hear them.

  6. Jeffrey Kelly Thanks! I lifted it from Fellowship. I get that DW always meant to pay homage to classic D&D by having traditional stats and HP and stuff, but for a PbtA game so heavily about the fiction, I felt that it was a lot neater this way.

    Some hacks for DW, or suggestions for a 2nd edition, start to look like the very thing these games were built to get away from — bloated volumes full of too-specific rules and scenarios. I wanted to trim back down and say, “here’s a mechanic for resolving conflict,” not “here’s how you resolve only a very specific kind of conflict.”

    After all, arguably the most important part is whether you succeed, not precisely and mathematically how.

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