Headlines from Hell
A downloadable game
A cabal of overlords from hell called the ‘Lizards of the Roast’ have set a plan in motion to overthrow the mortal ruling kingdoms. Instead of using an overt army, hell is slowly corrupting officials. The overlords plan to seize power when enough mortals have been corrupted.
As an investigative reporter, you sense something is wrong. However, no one will believe you without evidence! Find enough information to unite the ruling kingdoms against the overlords of hell before their seeping corruption becomes absolute!
HEADLINES FROM HELL is a solo Table-Top Role Playing Game (TTRPG). In the game, you are a news reporter attempting to sway public opinion against corruption. To win the game, you need 20 EVIDENCE points. You lose if hell gets to 20 CORRUPTION.
BASIC GAME RULES
The game works through a series of dice rolls. The basic game order is as follows:
- Roll a twenty-sided die (d20) against the current CORRUPTION score. If you roll higher, you discover secret information!
- Use rollable tables to fill in the template for a HEADLINE, in the vein of 'Mad Libs.'
- Roll a d20 to determine how the public reacts to your news article. You might gain EVIDENCE, CORRUPTION, NOTORIETY, or a mix of the three.
- The turn ends, and hell gains 1 CORRUPTION. Start at turn 1.
NOTORIETY is a special point mechanic that provides you with bonuses to your d20 rolls. When it gets to 5 points, you can activate your SPECIAL ACTION to delay CORRUPTION for 3 turns. Think of it like riling up the public to cause commotion!
To play the game, you just need a printed copy of the game sheet, a twenty-sided die, and a pencil. You could also get away with tracking this game using a dice app and a google doc. Completing a game by yourself should take 15-20 minutes.
The game itself is an instructions PDF. For those that pay $2 or more, there is a second version of the PDF that has blank tables for the HEADLINE generator. Feel free to write in your own words for the tables and use characters from your own fantasy setting!
This game was inspired by Linda Codega, a Gizmodo/io9 reporter who broke the news on Wizards of the Coast's plan to create a new, more restrictive version of their Open Gaming License. I made a joking tweet to Linda that they deserved their own TTRPG for her work highlighting the community, but then I wondered how a news journalist would fight for justice in a fantasy world!
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