You know me. I like rant about old games and not just the originals but digging up something that’s been out a couple of years but just doesn’t seem to be getting much notice. So yeah. Here’s Mazes & Perils.
I’ll admit that this one of those PDF’s that sat there on my hard drive for years. Yeah, just another makeover of Basic. Sigh. So I didn’t pay that much attention to it. Then came along Anchor.fm and I started listening to a lot more RPG related podcasts and one that stumbled upon was World of Arkonis. (And in case anyone with that is reading, more episodes please?) So this brought Mazes and Perils back to my mind and I bit the bullet (OK took advantage of Drivethru’s Deal of the Day) and got the Deluxe Edition. And that dear readers is how we got to today.
So the Deluxe Edition is where the meat is at giving two new classes: The Enchanter and the Shaman. The Enchanter is sort of like an Illusionist but not quite. While the Shaman is sort of like a Druid but not quite. Both these classes stick to simple and easy design that comes along with using the Basic style rules. Each has their own spell list and most of the spells are unique to the class while some are similar to other spells. And each has their little other quirks. Non-Enchanters attempting to read an Enchanter’s spell book have a chance of going insane. While the Shaman has a quick self healing ability (Atunement) and can summon a Spirit Guardian that attacks like a watch dog. So there’s some neat stuff there.
So what else in there? Well. Variable HD and variable weapon damage are listed as optional rules. Yes that’s right optional. So just use a d6 if you’re going very old school. I’m one of those folks who go through retroclones looking for neat little stuff that adds an interesting tweak to the rules. And there’s a couple in there like Magic-Users being able to use their spell book like a scroll. And speaking of magic there are some pretty cool rules for casting spells in combat. Attack rolls on spells. Hmm. I kind of like that. There’s no race as class but there are racial class restrictions except for humans and halflings. Yep, you read that right. Halflings can be any class.
So overall, Mazes and Perils is another old school clone with some cool twists and tweaks. The Deluxe Edition clocks in at 75 pages so if have a hard copy it’s a fairly portable and complete game to throw into bag. If you’re like me and just love rules hacks and putting all sorts of rules together in a freaky frankengame, then oh yeah there’s some hand bits in there.
You can check out the Original or Deluxe editions on Drivethru. And note. The Enchanter and Shaman are only in the Deluxe Edition.