Saturday, August 28, 2010

Play Lone Wolf on Your Computer

I had a job that entailed a partner and me spraying weeds around dairies, in 100+ degree heat, in the county with the most dairies in the US. The ultimate in tedious boredom. But we found that the guy driving the rig, if careful, could read books. So we started taking turns adventuring through the Lone Wolf world.

Apparently Joe Dever is a cool cat, because he made all these books available for free online. And now there is a program that will let you play through the books. It looks like it's Windows only, but I was able to play on Linux with no problem whatsoever. The program seems well done from the quick playtesting I gave it.

I like the idea of playing through the books-- what was cool about them was you could be anywhere-- like a dusty road surrounded by lowing dairy cattle-- and enter that world. So, I think I'll refrain from using this program for now. But I wanted you all to know it was available.

I know I mentioned in a blog post before about how I loved the way these books let you randomize numbers, basically closing your eyes and stabbing at an array of random numbers with a pencil. But looking back, I see that it was probably a big influence on what I'm trying to make now-- a clean, simple, iconic representation of equipment that new players can quickly understand.

Take a look at these weapons:

This illustration was meant to let you randomly pick a weapon specialization. But imagine the numbers being, instead the damage each weapon does. That is what I'm trying to make, albeit with public domain images. No muss, no fuss, no charts, and everyone can see the difference between, say a broadsword and long sword.


  1. I'm interested to see these charts when you finish with them.

  2. I always appreciated the dice rolling mechanic in SHERPA, which you could do with a stopwatch. Start the stopwatch, then stop it without looking and check the ones digit of the millisecond counter. Random(ish) number between 1 and 10. :)

  3. This needs to be an iPhone app.


  4. Will do Ian. And thanks Jamie, hadn't heard of SHERPA before, seems to fit the philosophical goals of what I think of as "Mountain D&D," gaming that's requires almost nothing but your mind.