Beasts & Barrows

After playing a campaign on WoDu for almost two years, I had made enough changes (including writing a new magic system) to warrant a new telling of the ruleset. Now… nobody asked/needed yet another rule set. No. But to move forward I needed to publish it. And so I have.

The gist is:

  1. it’s free and always will be
  2. it’s printable via print css… YAY
  3. it’s light on rules… and steals heavily from WoDu (THANKS Mr. Harper)
  4. it’s as flexible as WoDu… you can essentially play ANY adventure with trivial conversions

Anyway, The Gauntlet is more keen towards WoDu, so maybe there’s some here that might enjoy this kinda thing. This was not my intent in writing it… but would be a lovely benefit.


Cool. As a fellow WoDu enthusiast I’ve started listening to your podcast (only on EP… 3, I think). Reading Beasts & Barrows I see that it differs from WoDu with respect to Magic, Last Breath, and Milestone Leveling. These are great and typical additions to the core. Do you have other points where you diverge from the source - maybe they aren’t documented here?

For me, I’ve found skills hard to adjudicate so switched them up to grant advantage.

Ha… I also switched skills to advantage. I don’t like auto-success. That was the FIRST thing I changed. My players weren’t down with the magic-in-a-bottle… hence the new magic system. The other changes were based on play in my groups. My players LOVE chatting with Death :laughing:

I mean, I really like WoDu and wasn’t looking to release a new system (that nobody needs)… but I needed it. I’ve gotten feedback about how will I differentiate it from other systems… and my answer is: I’m not looking to do that. I just need a system I love running… this does that for me.

There will almost certainly be more changes… it’s why I threw it on my blog with a version number. That’s the plan for it…

Thanks for the shout for the podcast. Sadly, I lost a few episodes in the middle but the first season was really fun; especially the backend and finish of the season. Hope you enjoy!

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aaaaand I published it. Do feel free to snag it for $0. Give it a spin the next time you reach for WoDu and see how it fits.


This is really nice! I’ll try to run at least one session or two sometime soon. My only dislike is the Vancian magic system, which I would hack into a different form of magic, but that’s not a fault of the game, just a preference. Excellent job!

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I get that for sure. Originally I was trying more of a: “cast new spells at disadvantage until you succeed n times” kinda thing… but my players didn’t seem to like/get it.

For me, I don’t like spell books. It seems absurd that a mage couldn’t remember a spell. I use the term “Mastered spells” to express more: these are the spells I have practiced and are in my current repertoire of spells.

And while I do use the term spell slots to help explain the number of spells a mage can cast, the only REAL limit is the mage’s death :smile: (as casting starts to cause harm to the caster after a certain point).

As for level, I don’t like leveled spells… hence levelless spells. The number you can master is determined by level as I feel like it’s reasonable, if not natural, for a mage to retain more magic as they improve their skill.

Thanks a bunch! Would LOVE to hear how you hack it…

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I totally get it. Pretty cool that you’re tailoring the game to your players too!

Unrelated to it, can you tell me how you hosted the game online? I am looking for free and easy ways to do it for my own games and I am kinda stuck :slight_smile:

You mean my blog? I’m an idiot and wrote my own blog software and run it on a server I manage :roll_eyes: . This also required me to write a rss script for my pod (which I also host on the server).

I would suggest NOT doing what I did :laughing:

pffff ok! I’ll try to remember that! XD