Those Gosh-Darn Rat-Men!
First, a quick shipping update! For European backers, Pegasus is still sorting their portion, and hope to have those shipping within the next week. For "Rest of the World" backers, we just saw our shipment! Saw it . . . and it drove away. Due to an issue with the delivery truck's liftgate, they weren't able to unload the pallets. But we're hoping they will have that fixed soon and be back tomorrow to unload our treasures, so we can start sorting and shipping.
- Hunter Shelburne
And so we come to the third and final stretch-goal PDF, which is Dungeon Fantasy: Against the Rat-Men. Like Dungeon Fantasy Traps and Dungeon Fantasy Magic Items, this supplement will be available on its own and as part of the Dungeon Fantasy Companion.
Backers of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game wanted more crunch, but they also wanted more adventures. We were more than happy to deliver! We wanted the game to be beginner-friendly, and one of the hardest tasks for anybody new to a roleplaying game – particularly for people new to RPGs in general – is concocting interesting, well-balanced scenarios.
For this adventure, we prevailed upon Matt Riggsby, author of the only two GURPS Dungeon Fantasy scenarios to date – GURPS Dungeon Fantasy Adventure 1: Mirror of the Fire Demon and GURPS Dungeon Fantasy Encounters 1: The Pagoda of Worlds – as well as of two dungeon-fantasy-friendly GURPS Locations titles: Hellsgate and The Tower of Octavius. I feel no shame in admitting that Matt is better than me at creating dungeons!
Matt’s mission was to deliver an adventure that flowed naturally from the one in the box: I Smell a Rat, by Yours Truly. This imposed limitations on both the setting and the types of encounters involved. A further challenge was the need to fit everything into a 26-page PDF without adding tons of maps.
As I said, Matt is good at this stuff. He submitted a scenario that not only interlocked seamlessly with mine, but also reused some of the same areas (and thus maps) . . . with suitable changes. He added some new-and-nasty places to explore, too. And as this was all part of the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game plan, we were able to include a big, beautiful map of the new territory in the box, along with extra figures for a few of its denizens.
As a result, the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game launches with two adventures that link up into a mini-campaign. This doubles not only the game’s out-of-the-box playability, but also the number of examples of dungeon creation available to new GMs. In the process, it provides insights into campaign creation as well.
What’s the scenario about? The trouble with adventures is that almost any details are also spoilers. It suffices to say that there are indeed rat-men, along with rivals of the rat-men and a boss monster – or really, a couple of bosses. Also: tentacles.
Also, a Contest!
We're holding a contest on Facebook to win a signed copy of the Dungeon Fantasy RPG boxed set. Simply follow the instructions on that post to enter!
You can take it as read that the GURPS Dungeon Fantasy series counts. To inspire you, here are a few of the GURPS supplements I think would blend well with the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game.
• GURPS Locations: Hellsgate. Why must “town” in hack ‘n’ slash fantasy be some human-dominated place with law, order, and goodie-goodie temples? This demon-run burg at the edge of Hell lets delvers be delvers, finding quests and getting into slaying-and-looting trouble without ever stepping outside city limits. Fans of urban, dungeon, and extradimensional adventure alike would be at home here, making Hellsgate a fine base of operations for a less-than-traditional group of heroes!
• GURPS Banestorm: Abydos. I’ll be honest: I don’t think Yrth, the world of GURPS Banestorm, is ideal for dungeon crawls. But with a little adaptation, the city of Abydos would make a wonderful focal point for a campaign. Like Hellsgate, it isn’t a traditional example of “town,” as black magic lurks just beneath the surface. It isn’t as monster-infested and overtly supernatural, though, so it offers a slightly more conventional base of operations without being too staid.
• GURPS Fantasy-Tech 1: The Edge of Reality. Certainly, GURPS Magic and the GURPS Thaumatology series provide a lot of input on magic items, while the GURPS Low-Tech series covers realistic gear. Kitchen-sink fantasy also needs stuff that sits in the middle, though: unlikely weapons and armor, improbable materials, ninja gear, and advanced-but-off-kilter artifacts for dwarf engineers and gnome artificers to hawk. This supplement is your one-stop shop for all that. Now it’s your turn . . .
– Sean Punch