Mark Damon Hughes Role-Playing Games [Parental Advisory: Explicit Lyrics] [about]

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My Role-Playing Games

2013Jul22

I first played D&D (Holmes blue book) in 1978, and I've writing RPGs since the late '80s, but my first games were overly ambitious and technical, and frankly no fun. Then between 1998-2000, I gnawed into the live wire of design, and made three good games (and one very serious joke); obviously there's work I could do for all three, but I'm happy with them, and play them as is. And I rested, and worked on computer games and played other peoples' games.

The "old-school renaissance" (OSR) of the late '00s got me back into thinking about game design, and especially about swords & sorcery, not high fantasy like D&D. I can play retro-clones or just Holmes, but those aren't always what I'm after. What is the nature of swords & sorcery? What is it about? The mix of heroes (even if they are common and venal heroes) and darkest horror. It's about metal and blood, barbarians and desperate men of falling empires, pagan rituals, forbidden lore.

I've posted some thoughts about this before, and despite the stillness of the forest, dark shapes move among the trees. Freelance: Metal & Blood is coming.

I'm also preparing for the future. So the old page is archived, and only the things I care about most will appear here, there's no need in a post-search-engine world for a bunch of links.

Freelance: Metal & Blood (COMING), swords & sorcery RPG
DUDE (2000), a one-stat, card-based, casual RPG
G.P.A. (2000), a university campus on the edge of reality
Phobos (2000), the Wonders and Terrors of Technology and Magic
SIX WORD RPG! (2002), minimalist games are good for you

Game Reviews

*What's Wrong With AD&D?
Cyberpunk RPG Systems Rant
Deadlands Review & Information
Gamma World (Sword & Sorcery)
HackMaster Basic
Heaven & Earth
Morpheus "The Roleplaying System Of The Mind's Eye"
Shadow Bindings
SLA Industries
Undiscovered
Violence: the RPG of egregious and repulsive bloodshed
Waste World
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