I don’t often post about Kickstarters. Sure I do post reviews as I get those in my grubby little fingers. But every once in a while one comes along that I just have to rant about.
Back in December, I predicted that Shadowdark would be the one to look out for this year. And the most complete but slightly dated review I did was way back in 2021 of the Beta rules. And yes I do have the Quick Start. If you are link weary then here’s the lowdown. The RPG has solid old school DNA. It’s not a clone of any of the previous editions and it does bill itself as modernized but leans more heavily to the old school side. How much? Well, 3d6 in order. Four basic classes. And the Thief (not Rogue) has a d4 Hit Die. It does use a roll to cast system for Wizards and Priests which is mechanic that I’ve actually grown to like more and more. Most of the modernization comes with streamlining play. Like I said, it’s solidly old school. I could grab any one of the adventures sitting on my shelf and run it on the fly and just any conversion in my head.
Here’s the best way that I can describe Shadowdark. Imagine that Basic D&D, Dungeon Crawl Classics, Index Card RPG, and a couple of random retro-clones got really drunk in a mad scientist’s laboratory. They all wake up hung over the next morning and say, “What have we created?!” That about it.
Some may ask me a couple of things. First, no I have no financial stake in this and wasn’t asked to write it. But there is a very nice Third Party License and I need to get off my butt and get writing. Am I playing it right now? No. But I am using the spells from it in my Deathbringer Campaign. It’s roll to cast too. Oh and Shadowdark uses zoned combat so all you Dungeoncraft fans, it’s time to break out that Ultimate Dungeon Terrain.
I’ve ranted long enough. So just go check out the Kickstarter already. And I have backed it.