Friday, May 8, 2015

Commentary On The Free OSR Resource The Hulks and Horrors Rpg System - Basic Black Edition From Bedroom Wall Press For Your Old School Campaigns

Hulks and Horrors is a solid free OSR sci fi rpg system, the game covers an nice range of  dungeon crawling in space and the PC's are easily disposable and yet quick to generate. Now I've seen lots of old school sci fi rpg action out there with the White Star rpg system based off of the Swords and Wizardry rpg system. But Hulks and Horrors is a completely different animal. To compare and contrast the two these are very different games with completely different approaches to similar material.
White Star is daring do space opera, and Hulk and Horrors is a free OSR resource game with its roots in an already established campaign background that's part of the game here. The interstellar scene is trying to recover from centuries of losing contact with colonies, worlds, ships, etc. This is a game intergalactic dungeon crawling with hazards at every turn. Basically it can be thought of as 'survival horror' in space.
If White Star is emulating Swords and Wizardry with space opera elements then Hulks and Horrors is Event Horizon with Lovecraftian and balls to the walls dungeon crawling.  And its been free for close to a year now!


John Berry III did a hell of a bang up job with the game and it plays at some interesting old school science fictional elements.  There are some great fan resources as well for the game out there such as a nice PC spread sheet right over HERE. Quick Red Shirt and NPC generator right over HERE. A randomly generated Starship From Hell randomly determined space craft complete with crew work up, mock up for the NPC's. the layout, and details right over HERE. Finally a complete run through of how to generate a PC from the ground up. right over HERE.
Nice little system built on D&D's core strengths with something akin to Traveller's interstellar travel, coupled with some incredibly useful starship, sector, and solar system generating tables. I actually like the premise of exploring dead planets,failed space colonies, and dead planets. There's something to be said for the game's approach to how it handles random tables, and gives plenty of options to how to get the most out of the game. Hulks and Horrors knows how to play to its strengths mainly dungeon crawling , ruin exploration, and monster hunting is a sold part of the background.   The extensive use of random charts is always a plus, and I do like that there are multiple options for acquiring a ship.
All in all its easy to forget that there are some fantastic free options for OSR dungeon crawling in space with a more gritty feel and solidly dangerous  NPC action going on under the guise of random charts and much more. Hulks and Horrors brings a three things to the table great alien races as PC's, an actual interesting background setting that you can shoe horn in any sci fi trope in as a dungeon or adventure location, and lots of adventure creation and location add on resources already within the game itself. All of this is done in such a way as to make it actually usable. All of this is done with fast set up time in mind for a game. Oh and it's free packed with all of the above for a ready, set go, and jump in to a game adventure very,very quickly. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.