LuLu Recommendation Thread


#1

Lulu.com is an excellent self-publishing resource, and every so often they have a good coupon deal come through, and I always end up asking the same question in Chat: What do you recommend picking up from Lulu?

Please provide a link & a short description of why you recommend the product, as to be helpful to our fellow Gauntleteers

One of my frequent suggestions is the Storygame Names Project, just because it’s nice to have a physical resource to go to when you need a name, and also need to make a quick decision about how to flavor your world. Names have power, and giving an NPC a name that clashes with the setting can give your players ideas and clues on how to handle them.

I’m also going to suggest Society of Dreamers as another good pick, because this game has one of my favorite setup mechanics: clearing the room by clapping and making noise in order to chase out the bad spirits, and then all focusing on a ball of light. Outside of the game it seems a little laughable, but getting everyone to do this makes us all get into the same mindspace, and I think really adds to the subtle creepyness of the game.


#2

In the OSR domain, there’s a bunch of cool stuff too:


#3

Johnstone Metzger has a number of books on LuLu. Of note are the Dungeon World bestiaries, The Metamorphica and Nightmares Underneath. Johnstone Metzger

Karl Stjernberg also has The Rad Hack a post apocalypse game for Black Hack. Rad Hack


#4
  • The Gongfarmer’s Almanac, a yearly project of the Dungeon Crawl Classics community. The quality is highly variable but the creativity is always high. The PDFs are all free and the books are printed at cost. (Full disclosure: I did some editing for the 2018 edition and will be doing the same for the 2019 edition. Also, if you are interested in contributing take a look here.)
  • Anything by Johnstone Metzger, but especially:
    • The Metamorphica Revised, a massive collection of tables to create mutations and the like. (I have it in softcover and am kicking myself I didn’t get it in hardcover. Questing Beast review here.)
    • The Nightmares Underneath, a fantasy Middle East where the power of Law holds sway, but Nightmare pushes its way into reality. (Please get this in dust-jacked hardcover. It is absolutely gorgeous. Questing Beast review here.)
    • The Nameless Grimoire, a huge magic injection for TNU. (Again, it is absolutely gorgeous. Questing Beast review here.)
  • Anything by Evlyn M, but the Chromatic Soup books and Spinetooth Oasis are very well regarded.
  • Anomalous Subsurface Environment, a gonzo AF science/fantasy setting/megadungeon (Here’s my three part run of it from Gauntlet Hangouts.)
  • Whitehack, an innovative OSR game only available in print which directly influenced Macchiato Monsters and The Veil 2020.

#5

One other thing I will note, especially since DriveThru is doing a sale now too: Lulu’s dust-jacked hardcover books are basically library-quality. If you are trying to decide whether to get a PoD version of something from Lulu or DriveThru - if it is available on Lulu in Hardcover (dust-jacket) format (especially for black and white) I highly recommend paying the premium.


#6

We always publish at Lulu as well as other locations, so if you’ve already enjoyed, say, Diaspora or Hollowpoint, you might want to revisit and see what else we have to offer.

And generally I’ve found the book quality very high BUT (there is always a but) they print at their print partner closest to you and not all print partners are created equal. So far my Canadian deliveries have been superb, though.


#7
  • Whitehack , an innovative OSR game only available in print which directly influenced Macchiato Monsters and The Veil 2020.

I’d like to second this. Whitehack is easily my favourite OSR game.


#8

Well, I have a big list of recommendations on my blog. If anyone have suggestions, I try to update it every chance I have!

By the way, I will add those mentioned here now.


#9

Yeah, I am putting my books there on Dust Jacket version. They look like luxury versions of the game!


#10

Whitehack is so good I keep thinking about buying a second copy just to have it and cuddle with it.

Colonial Troopers by Thomas Denmark is a game I picked up on a whim and it’s a solid OSR sci-fi game in the vein of Bughunters. One thing I really love is that there’s a class for each stat, and for Charisma there’s a Diplomat Class. Whenever you run into aliens, they are automatically hostile unless someone in your party has a level in Diplomat, in which case they add Reaction rolls to your encounters. That and the Constitution class (I can’t remember the name) gives you access to power armor. I think those mechanics are really clever, I feel like there’s a Rifts hack in those rules that’s dying to come out.

Denmark also designed a superhero OSR game called Guardians and I think superheroes are a weird fit for OSR mechanics but it’s pretty capably implemented here.


#11

Paging @MartinRalya who, I believe, keeps some detailed Lulu lists.

The only other thing I’ll add is that Lulu is, sadly, sale-driven, so keep your eyes peeled for 20% or 25% discounts.


#12

I do! Just one list, a curated list of RPG stuff on Lulu that I like.

It’s gotten steadily more out of date as I buy fewer RPGs in print and more in PDF, but folks have gotten some good mileage out of it over the years.


#13

Jason, do creators get paid less when you buy on sale, or is it Lulu that takes that hit?


#14

I’m pretty sure Lulu eats it, because they never ask us.


#15

Lulu does in fact eat the entire coupon. I use them when bulk buying for distributors.