A downloadable Tabletop Action-RPG

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A Fast-Paced Game of Blood & Skulls for 2-6 Slayers

Our world is rotting. The countryside is littered with festering corpses and unholy abominations. Our moon glows a crimson red. Our church has all but abandoned us.

While the Angels bring forth the Final Woe in their immaculate choir,  there are still those who stand in the face of the apocalypse. Brave warriors from kingdoms across the land. Slayers, who through their bravery or foolishness, stand against the endless spawn of Hell itself.

Demon Crawl - A Tabletop Action-RPG

Inspired by games of visceral combat and kinetic action like Diablo and Doom, Alessandro (@sandromaycry) and Duffy (@orxalot) set out to design an Action-RPG for the Tabletop space. Demon Crawl - Gothic (Penned by Alessandro) is its first fantasy-oriented incarnation (with a star-hopping sci-fi setting in development by Duffy). Both games pull from the same core Demon Crawl system and philosophy:

  • D6 Only System: In Demon Crawl the Slayers are playing a 2D6 Hack n' Slash while the GM is playing an all-out wargame with a mountain of 12mm D6s. 
  • Blood: Slayers taking DMG and tearing through enemies, will generate Blood for themselves. This Blood is spent to unleash crazy abilities, act on enemy turns, empower attacks and even heal the Slayer at the last second.
  • No Roll To Hit: Every Slayer and Enemy Solo hit connects. Every turn brings all parties closer to death and ramps up the game's tension.
  • Hordes of Enemies: Enemies in Demon Crawl spawn in swarms of countless units that all occupy a single space, but each only have 1 HP. This system distills crowd combat into a satisfying Rip-and-Tear-fest that's easy for GMs to manage and Slayers to wrap their heads around.
  • It Is Always the Slayers' Turn: No matter what is happening, the Slayer always has options to act using Blood or Items. This recontextualizes the GM's turn as kinetic frenzy of healing, dashing and even attacking.
  • Combat That Prioritizes Speed: Action RPGs are all about speed and style, so combat in Demon Crawl is fluid, crunchy and above all fast to run.
  • Roleplaying That Prioritizes Stakes: When rolling Failure always has consequence but success has the possibility to roll into even greater rewards. Slayers are encouraged to leverage their heroic strengths and creativity while Overlords are encouraged to pull at their mortal weaknesses and recklessness.
  • Fast to Learn, Fast to Play, Fast to Hack: Speed was the biggest priority in Demon Crawl's design, and the system aims to provide GMs and Slayers with a combat experience unlike anything else. I've also aimed to make the game easy to learn with Slayers having all the relevant combat info on their Slayer Sheet. This all culminates in a modular system that's incredibly fast to hack and build your own content for.

Gothic - A Grim and Fantastical Setting

Demon Crawl - Gothic is the first pre-built setting for this system, with its own unique systems and horrors. The setting pulls from the Romantic Gothic Horror movement as much as it does from Pulp Horror and modern Dark Fantasy. It is a setting that lives in the shadow of an eccentric church and on the bones of horrors that best left forgotten. Fans of settings like those found in Diablo, Bloodborne, Castlevania and Nier will feel right at home in this macabre land of deceit and cosmic magicks.

What's Included?

  • Basic Rules for the Demon Crawl - Gothic System
  • 6 Unique Slayer Classes to choose from, each with their own distinct flavor and playstyle (The Ragged Warrior, Seasoned Rogue, Wayward Sorcerer, Vermin Shepherd, Grim Archivist and War Machine) as well as one bonus class for early adopters (The Regal Attendant)
  • 3 Encounters featuring 3 intense bosses (From The Fugue of the Heretic King Dungeon)
  • Print-and-Hack materials for rapid dungeon building 

What's Needed?

  • 2-6 Participants (Plays best with one Overlord and 2-4 Slayers)
  • Ample paper, pencils and unique tokens
  • A mountain of D6s (Preferably 12mm)
  • An 8x8 Grid Board (Chess Board works great!)
  • A love for the macabre and a yearning for fast-paced combat

What's Next for Demon Crawl?

Right now Demon Crawl - Gothic Quickstart Edition serves as a first taste of both the Demon Crawl system and Gothic's macabre world. The next thing you might see from Demon Crawl is Duffy's sci-fi setting (Currently codenamed Demon Crawl - 6666). Eventually Demon Crawl - Gothic will get its own fully fleshed out hex-crawl, featuring a variety of unlockable Slayers, diverse locales, fishing mechanics, expanded progression rules and more! However currently I'm hard at work hammering out the Quickstart rules for my similarly fast, but certainly more complex Mecha Tactics game Mobile Engagement Chassis: Steel Hearts (It features a system that was a spiritual precursor to Blood and served as an inspiration for a lot of other narrative systems in Demon Crawl) so be sure to keep an eye on this page for whenever in the nebulous future the grim world of Woleria is expanded!

!!   Content Warning   !!

Be aware that Demon Crawl - Gothic includes copious references to Blood, Viscera, Bones and Body-horror. It is a game where life is fleeting and death abounds at every corner.

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Click download now to get access to the following files:

Demon Crawl - Gothic (Quickstart Edition) Zipped Tome 2 MB

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