Now that The Grind is starting to ship, this will be our last behind-the-scenes Grind article.
The Grind is literally bursting at the seams with adventure ideas, concepts, monsters, NPCs, items, and our Wild West hack. We can't wait for you to get a chance to bring it to your table.
To recap, here are the other Grind articles:
- Main Grind landing page
- In Journey to the Dreaded Isle, we kicked-off our zine with some tidbits about a modern twist on a classic adventure.
- In the Turns Before the Grind, we looked at the new Heist Conflict and drawing inspiration from The Wild Bunch movie.
Players and GMs
The zine opens with a story and some articles for players. Then, we get into some content for GMs. So, there is a little bit of something for everyone.
It's not just a random assortment of awesomeness. Each of the one-page adventures and the adventure Quick Starts draw from some of the items, monsters, town locations, and NPCs from the book. There are a lot of relationships between the various sections. The zine is meant to be something you can mine for connections and cobble together pieces for several campaigns. The Grind should fuel your games for many moons to come.
In the "Menagerie," we have quite an assortment of monsters including the Hellhound. The Hellhound's "blind rage" is its weakness, but its Petrified Heart special ability keeps it coming back for more. There are some other classic monsters and some inventive twists for you to discover. Rolling a monster is a relatively easy task for an experienced GM, but nothing beats a comprehensive monster stat block with everything right there for you at your fingertips.
Avocations are an essential part of the design of our Wild West hack. Avocations replace the human specialty skill with a new list. The characters are still desperate and destitute, but they have (or had) a talent in some trade like a Brewer, Tanner, or Rancher. In another life or time, these minor trades or hobbies might have become fully-fledged occupations, but, fate had other plans for our poor dastards. Special thanks to Jared Sorensen for this wealth of new skills contributed to The Grind.
Mainstreet replaces the Guild in town. On Mainstreet, characters can put that avocation to work and operate a business or take up a stake in town. It ain't gonna be enough to live off of though, and so the weary and hopeless desperado must take to the road to make ends meet.
There's a lot to draw from to create all sorts of settings with the hack. You could run it as a mining game and play it straight and historical. For me, my favorite playtests were a dragon-hunting-wise party battling it out against a young black dragon (spoiler alert: the dragon won every time). Or, you could go to the dark Weird West like The Dark Tower by Stephen King, The Half-Made World by Felix Gilman, or even monster hunting in the bayou with a setting inspired by Crytek's Hunt: Showdown.
Unleash the Chaos,
"RST Pistol" artwork by Matt Gibeault