Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game is a streamlined version of the classic GURPS rule set by Steve Jackson Games with a focus on the fantasy dungeon crawl genre. While GURPS has long been known to be a rule system with the flexibility to cover a wide range of genres, it hasn’t always been known for dungeon crawls. The GURPS Dungeon Fantasy line of supplements were released to focus on this genre, but still required investment into the core GURPS rulebooks and other supplements, such as GURPS Fantasy and GURPS Magic, to take full advantage.
Enter the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game Kickstarter. This project served to release a streamlined and focused version of GURPS as a starter box that would contain all of the material a new player would need to get up and running. The box set itself contains five books covering adventures, monsters, spells, an introductory adventure, and the core game mechanics. Included as well are tokens, fold out maps, and six dice. Everything a group needs to play the game with the exception of pregenerated characters.
One of the reasons that I wanted to start with DFRPG as our first rule system to try as part of The Tabletop RPG Sampler project is that the Elder Minion and I have been running a GURPS game together for the past few months. This makes DFRPG an easier transition as the core rule system is the same. That being said, we are making a conscious effort to stick to the rule book a bit more closely which will bring into focus some of the aspects of GURPS that we have not been leveraging up to this point:
- We are making full use of the maps and tokens for combat rather than theater of the mind.
- We are using maneuvers for combat actions.
- We will eventually introduce a magic using member to the party to get exposure to the spellcasting system.
All-in-all, this is shaping up to be a solid and complete product based on my initial impressions, so I am very much looking forward to playing.
For our mini campaign we will be supplementing the core set with the Gamemaster’s screen, the DFRPG Companion sourcebook, and the Hall of Judgement adventure/sourcebook. I’m a big fan of GM screens, so I like to use them whenever I have a chance. The Companion sourcbeook contains the adventure “Against the Rat-men” which is a followup to the starting adventure in the core set. The Hall of Judgement product deserves a special mention as it is a third party sourcebook published by Gaming Ballistic and contains a mini campaign setting and adventure.
Hall of Judgement – $28.00
For this mini-campaign I will be acting as the gamemaster and the Elder Minion will be running two characters. I’ve decided to base the game in the Nordlond setting outlined in the Hall of Judgement sourcebook with the town of Isfjall being the initial location. We will be starting with the adventure “I Smell a Rat” from the core set. After that we will tackle the follow-up, “Against the Rat-men”, and then expand to the Hall of Judgement as the finale. This approach will give us a good mix of dungeon crawl and wilderness encounters across a wide area. Plus it allows me to focus on gameplay and the rules rather than adventure design.
The Elder Minion chose two characters from the “Dungeon Delvers” booklet that comes with the Gamemaster’s screen. This booklet comes with 13 pregenerated characters around the 250 point level that is the standard starting point for DFRPG.
Sir Yvor Gryffyn – Human Knight
Llandor the Gray – Elven Scout
Puddin’ Noddington – Gnome Thief (Added at the end of the first play session)
Francesco Zombani – Human Cleric (Added at the end of the second play session)