HW takes classic dungeon crawling and transports it into a Virtual Reality in a cyberpunk/late stage capitalism dystopian world. Players are hackers breaking into corporate nodes to better their communities. The core game is done, currently I am working on layout inspired by the 80s computers and punk zine aesthetic. Still need to write the GM/world section.
This is somewhat experimental design, here’s couple details about it:
- the core mechanic is taken from World of Dungeons - single risk move with dis/advantage (2d6 with PbtA miss/mixed/hit).
- modern OSR elements from games like Maze Rats, Knave & Black Hack (equipment slots, items as classes) incorporated into the narrative.
- Your character sheet is your cyber deck (the hardware you use to access the VR world). You physically cut and paste modules to your sheet to customize it (like you would add expansion cards to a computer).
- Combat is quick and deadly, PCs can handle some action, but it is better to be strategic (in OSR planning sense) about combat. Most of what you fight is corporate AI manifesting as “monsters”.
- The game centers around “runs” in the style of Shadowrun and TurboBreakers where you go into a corporate “dungeons” to grab stuff that will help others and fuck shit up for the corp. Characters can only advance by helping their community and hindering the corps. Gameplay outside those runs is hand waved and a part of meta-game.
- Lastly (and this is main reason the game is not out yet) I am trying to make the layout feel very diegetic (one of the motifs for the game is blending the line between real and in-game world, and between the narrative and systems). The finished game will also work a bit as an art-zine with a strong anti-design aesthetic. You can see couple more spreads here.
Comments and critique welcome. Happy to answer any questions.