TL;DR: I’ve been running DCC RPG for three sessions, killed 9 PCs and while initially being overwhelmed I’m now rolling with it and I homeruled it already.
Longform: Last year I saw DCC RPG in my FLGSes and I left it on the self because, well, AFG. AFG is a small game. AFG has very few tables. I can run it without using the handbook, and I’m supercomfortable with it. In part because I wrote it, but mostly because it’s tiny and designed to be nimble. It’s my OSR game, and does things the way I mean them to be.
DCC is an A4 book two inches thick. It’s full of tables. Spells take two pages each. Critical hits go on and on and on for pages. Compared to my usual fare, it’s incredibly baroque, and the characters have such a badass feeling, almost a comic-book aura of WRAAGHH to them.
But since it was reduced to 24 quid and I had store credit (because of FLGS AFG sales) I got myself a copy. I figured I could do worse with my money.
Anyway, I read it and I realized it was more or less an homeruled S&W. And i struggled a bit because the handbook is not well organized, and I needed to search for stuff, but now it has a bunch of bookmarks and it works much better.
But the homerules are all METAL. Like, EFFING METAL MAN.
IT’S OSR PLAYED REALLY LOUD.
So, yeah. For the non DCC-enabled, here’s a brief rundown about what’s different:
- Casting and healing need a successful roll, but can be cast way more often. And depending on the casting roll, the effects can be more or less awesome. If you fail, bad shit happens. I like the strategic approach of spellcasting of D&D, but here METAAAAAL being potentially awesome or fucked up because you summon spells is good.
- For the same reason, critical hits and fumbles in combat. Especially fumbles. Criticals are dope. METAAAAAAAAALLL
- Fighters get to deal more damage and hit better, but instead of adding flat bonuses, they roll more dice. MORE SWINGY MELEE, MORE METAL.
- You get to start with four lvl0 commoners. You can’t even pick a race. A cobbler, an elven falconer, a rutabaga farmer and an artisan? All really squishy with 1d4 HP, and 3d6 down the line for stats? And that if they manage to survive he first adventure, only then they become level 1? And that they die, like, a lot, because with 2 hp, even if you’re conservative, a bad initiative roll can fuck you up? BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD OF METAAAAALLL
- Thieves when backstabbing deal automatically critical hits. Let me restate the supersweet concept in all caps: BACKSTABS ARE AUTOMATICALLY CRITICAL. I think that no words mo’better than AUTOMATICALLY CRITICAL have ever been written in the history of RPG. So the thief after a backstab can roll on the critical hits table. THIS IS GOOD. THIS IS METAL.
- There’s a spell that transforms stuff in SNAKES. You can’t control them and they slither away, but you can just TURN WEAPONS, BELTS, RINGS, ROPE, CROWNS, PANTS, IN SNAKES. EVEN ON OPPONENTS. SNAKES EVERYWHERE. METAL.
So, yeah, expect DCC content.