Tag Archives: ICRPG

Blighted Krevborna: Session 1

Our little group kicked off the Blighted Krevborna campaign. So setting wise I’ve kit bashed The Blight by Frog God Games and Krevborna by Dolorous Exhumation Press. The primary chassis of the rules is Deathbringer with other mechanics from Index Card RPG and Shadowdark.

Let’s start off with the characters because that’s the main thing that we did.

Millianna (Grimscribe) A former nun who found an ancient tome and discovered magic is a quicker path to power than prayer. She fled the church after her blackmail plot against one of her superiors went south in the process she incurred a large debt to a crime lord.

Then there’s Stryn (Deathbringer). He’s on the run from the law for allegedly murdering his father. The law and his siblings aren’t too happy about it.

Highlights of the session:

After a roadside ambush, Stryn will now be known as “Righty” since a Chaos Cannibal Mutant gnawed off his left hand. This left the party really banged up and not a healer in group. It’s Deathbringer so that healing is really slow.

Most exciting encounter was the fight with headless zombies atop a speed coach. Zombies jump on the coach. Characters barely hanging on. It was fun and exciting.

I’m not going to write really long session summaries with every detail. But here’s a bit of analysis of the mechanics. Get ICRPG. That really kept the game moving. Get Deathbring too. You have fast simple character generation and some ready made random tables for a grim back story. And, of course, I did use some house rules on it too.

Like this post or others? Want to see more behind the scenes rants and stuff. Want to support the blog? Check out the RPG Pig Pen on Locals or the Patreon.

Neatest Game I Discovered This Year: Index Card RPG

Ah yes. It’s that time of year for that naval gazing and best of the year type thing. Well, I’m no different because there’s a lot of cool stuff that came across by path. So the neatest game that’s already been out a while that I just started looking at closely is ICRPG.

My history with ICRPG is odd. I had heard about grabbed up the Quick Start and just didn’t get around to looking closely at it. Then I back the Vigilante City Kickstarter and got the ICRPG version of it and still didn’t look closely at it. So far it’s all been due to my own laziness and then I stumbled upon The Dungeon Craft Youtube channel and binge watched. Which in turn lead me to the Runehammer Youtube channel. And then well I was hooked and ordered up a copy of the Master Edition. BTW, the Master Edition is the latest and most complete version currently.

If I piece together history correctly, ICRPG started off as house rules for a 5E game and then evolved into it’s own thing. So it’s basically D&D. It’s brilliant in its simplicity and easily hackable. These are things that I love. Sure I lean into that old-school vibe and love those games. But ICRPG let’s me take those cool bits from whatever game I want and work them into a more efficient way. I know one of my grognard brethren will note that is started off as a 5E hack. True but the final product has a lot more in common with old school than 5E. No skills. Rulings not rules. And general attitude of that’s it OK for the GM to tinker with the rules.

I think it’s put best right there at the beginning of the book, “ICRPG is a way of thinking.” So if you’re an old hand take a moment and put aside much of what you’ve learned and read the book and understand where it’s going and what it’s doing then go back to your favorites and start tinkering to your heart’s desire. It’s a solid framework to build on or just draw inspiration and add on to whatever rules you happen to be your favorite.

Go ahead and check out the free Quickstart on DrivethruRPG.

Honorable Mention goes to Warlock! by Fire Ruby Designs. Ever want an easier way to play Warhammer Fantasy Role Play. Well, here you go. It even inspired me to do a Grievous Injury house rule for current campaign and that rule is going to be added to the next one.

Like this post or others? Want to see more behind the scenes rants and stuff. Want to support the blog? Check out the RPG Pig Pen on Locals or the Patreon.

White Box Wednesday: White Box+ICRPG?

OK, I know this is a weird one. So just hear me out before you go scrolling by.

I admit that I am pretty much a late comer to the whole ICRPG scene. As I’m playing around with it and the pieces are coming together in little brain, there’s some weird connections that happen. Like this one.


Yes, ICRPG does have a lot of its own jargon and feel. And there’s lots of cool things in there even if you don’t actually play the game on its own. And that’s basically the meat of this post. And the meat in this case is EFFORT.

OK, Effort is one of those in ICRPG that at first I wasn’t overly excited about. I liked but I wasn’t what you call excited about it. Fast forward. And here I am ranting about it. So what is Effort? At its most basic, it’s damage. You know hitting the orc with your sword. But you can use it for time sensitive dramatic tasks like the Thief has to pick the lock before the room fills with poison gas. Characters get bonuses to Effort during character generation and/or busy using cool gear. It breaks down pretty simply: Basic (Hands and Brain), Weapons/Tools, Guns, Magic, and Ultimate (Crits and really, really good gear). These normally use the standard RPG dice; d4, d6, d8, d10, and d12 respectively.

Now enter White Box. All of them use d6. Heck all weapons already do that with a small modifier. So the only actual change in that case is a character based bonus. Note Attribute Modifiers don’t add to Effort/Damage.

Once again this is one of those rules hacks to get you thinking. Kit bash all that stuff together the way you want. I’m throwing out an option for you to think about and play around with. And there’s a bunch of ideas for you to play around with too. Do what you want.

You can grab up the Free ICRPG Quickstart on DrivethruRPG and get to hacking.

ICVTT is out

Yep another rant about another simple VTT. Here’s the lowdown the new improved ICRPG VTT is out. Yeah, it’s been a couple of weeks but I finally had a chance to check it out.

First, if you don’t know what ICRPG is then go check it out. Just google it or check out the Quickstart. And yes there’s been a version out previously. Originally, that one was just for Runehammer Patrons then it was opened up to everybody else but you still logged in via Patreon. The new one is out of the Patreon circle and instead you log in with your Google creds.

This is another of those no frills VTT’s. It’s only the things really need and that’s it. You can throw up a map or just a background image. The GM can share their screen. And there’s a die roller that doesn’t get in the way like so many do. It’s simple and that’s the key thing. And it’s easy to use. No modules or anything like that.

But wait. Maybe you don’t play ICRPG. You can use it for just about any game. Now it doesn’t have the rules built into the VTT. For me, that’s kind of annoying since I house rule so much. And I prefer a game that’s sort of hybrid of mini’s for general location and theater of the mind. I don’t my VTT to look like a video game but I also realize there’s some neat stuff you can take advantage of like music.

I’ve ranted enough. Just go check it out for free at ICVTT.net

Thinking More About ICRPG

Yes, things have been way too busy IRL but that doesn’t meant I haven’t had a chance to catch my breath and sit back and ponder a few things. I grabbed up my copy of Index Card RPG Master Edition and did some deep thinking.

I am brainstorming on my next campaign (more about that later) and I want to add a few of the bells and whistles from ICRPG. I’m already using some like no derivative stats (3 to 18), timer dice, and “Don’t Die On Me, Man!”. So my players are already used to some of the core mechanics. But there’s a couple I want to slip in there for our next go around.

Room/Encounter/Scene Target Number: At first, this one may look bland. Set a Target Number for the scene and run with it. Attack a monster, cast a spell, sneak. No matter what you do, it’s basically the same number. Yes, there’s the EASY and HARD modifiers for specific tasks that adds a bit. Well, I’ve been keeping track a bit during the current campaign. Guess what? Looking at the math, I’ve been basically doing it that way without gaining and the additional efficiency benefits. It just works. We’re already using a roll-to-cast system for the spell casters. So the players are used to it but they still often raise the “What do I need to roll?’ question. Plus it bakes in the monster’s saving throw. All in one tiddy mechanic. Since we’re geographically challenged and playing via VTT anything to make play more efficient is welcome plus this mechanic really won’t throw a monkey wrench in play style and it will let the players really know (if they ignored all my other clues) if they are heading into a really tough situation.

Effort: OK, this one I’m still really debating but I am leaning towards it. If you haven’t read through any edition of ICRPG, Effort is basically damage. A characters ability score don’t affect damage. Points they put towards Effort and gear do. And it’s not just for combat. It can be used for other tasks that there’s a dramatic time limit on like being locked in a room that’s filling up with poison gas or figuring out the arcane runes before the evil cultists summon Big Bad Tentacle Daddy. Effort does make gear easy to use and provides a meaningful and unified mechanic when needed. Those are the good things. The only possible problem I foresee is the Fighter saying, “What do you mean I don’t add my Strength to damage?” This is one obstacle that can be pretty easy to overcome once the players get that while Effort is basically damage, it’s also an indication of skill. I think once they get used to it, they might like it. Also, I’ve some crazy ideas to use Effort and hack the Magic system but that’s a crazy rant for a later post. Most importantly, I think Effort is something that I’ll need to clearly explain to the players and make sure they understand the concepts. But overall, I think it will like so many other things make play more efficient. And that means more stuff can happen during a game session.

So yeah. These two things are probably going to get added to my next campaign. The group is still discussing exactly what they want to play so stayed tuned and hang on. I got the feeling this is going to be a fun one.