OpenQuest and its Dervived Games

So SimpleQuest, my concise cut-down version of OpenQuest, is ready to go live at as print-on-demand/pdf and is in the process of getting a nice proper shiny print version, with endpapers, ribbons, nicely sewn papers etc. Once backers have their copies, it goes out on general release.

As well as the milestone of getting the book published, it does two immediate things.

  • It’s a reference for short campaigns and convention-style one-shots that I and others will run. It was designed as a very pick-up-and-play implementation of OQ. So I expect those sorts of games to flourish both at home, online and at conventions.
  • For us at D101 Games, a base to add to for OpenQuest Dervied Games. Paul Mitchenter has already said he will use it as a base for his Year of the Four Emperors, an Ancient Roman game. I’ll be moving Skyraiders of the Floating Realms over to it rather than inflict yet another D100 system upon the world.

When I say “us at D101 Games”, I do this deliberately. SimpleQuest is not released under the Creative Commons (my preferred way of making OpenQuest available to others), so you can’t copy and paste great chunks of the book and put them in your product. If you want to do that, go to the OpenQuest SRD. Note there are a few alternative rules (Patrons and the way it handles Social Conflict) that aren’t in the OQ SRD, so don’t be use them. Also, the one magic system hasn’t been released under the CC, but is likely to be at some future point in time when I catch up with stuff. But this is the same as I’ve done in the past with OQ-derived games. Neither The Company (OQ-powered game of Modern Warfare) nor River of Heaven (our sci-fi magnum opus), which both use OpenQuest as a base, were ever released as Open Gaming Content.

In conclusion, the reason why this post is titled “OpenQuest and Derived Games” is I won’t be referring to games that use SQ as their starting points as SQ derived games. They are OpenQuest games. I gave SimpleQuest its own name to make it easier to reference, like its “Swords against the Savage North”, not “OpenQuest Swords and Sorcery”. There aren’t going to be separate OpenQuest, and SimpleQuest branches like there are for Fate Core and Fate Accelerated. It’s all OpenQuest 🙂

End of the Duck Crusade

Advance warning the Duck Crusade will be retired on 31st January.

I’ve had a quacking good time with this title, but all the physical copies have now gone and the party is over.

While the mighty Crusader Ducks are going to feature in some form or another, in the upcoming Feathers and the Fury, this is the last chance to get the ‘zine where they make their first appearance. Their enemies, the insane cultists of Grogzilla, and their counter-quest, Duck Hunt, certainly won’t be making a reappearance as playable characters, anytime soon.

The Duck Crusade by Dan Barker

Looking for a new Fantasy TTRPG?

One game design goal for OpenQuest was to be accessible and welcoming for gamers more familiar with a certain World’s Favourite Fantasy RPG. This is reflected in the default setting, which is very early-medieval period, has orcs, goblins, and other familiar fantasy races from myth and legend. But also, the system is at the simpler end of the D100 spectrum without losing any features. The OpenQuest main rule book is a complete all-in-one book with all the rules, a complete bestiary, an example setting and a complete adventure.

If you are curious about how OpenQuest would be a working alternative, you can check out the system for free via the OpenQuest System Resource Document.

We are also in the process of moving away from the OGL to a Creative Commons License, that third-party publishers can create their own OpenQuest content for adventures, supplements even whole games based on the OpenQuest System.  Previous editions spawned such great games as Cakebread and Waltons Clockwork and Chivalry, Crocked Staff’s Age of Shadow, and Osprey Games’ Jackals.

Also, very soon (I’m hoping within the next month or so), you’ll be able to pick up OpenQuest Dungeons, which gives guidance on how to use the OpenQuest Rules specifically for Dungeon Delves. Breaking new players (and Referees) into how OpenQuest works as a system, where it’s familiar, where it’s different and how to use the rules for familiar situations where

OpenQuest Dungeons, cover by Jon Hodgson


OpenQuest is Ceasing to use the OGL and going Creative Commons

OpenQuest, which SimpleQuest is based on, currently uses OGL version 1.0a to provide a license for 3rd party developers to use it for their books. Games such as Age of Shadow (Crooked Staff Publishing), Clockwork and Chivalry (Cakebread and Walton) and Jackals (Osprey Games). The first edition of OpenQuest was based on Mongoose Legend, which shares many system similarities with Chaosium INCs BRP but was written from the ground up.

OpenQuest has gone through many revisions since its first release over a decade ago, and with the controversy around WotC’s leaked plans for OGL 1.1, I think it is safest to drop the OGL, which on reflection, is no longer needed.

This means that all the currently available OpenQuest books will have their Legal Appendixes (the one or two pages containing the OGL declaration) removed soon. Future OpenQuest releases, and books from the upcoming SimpleQuest line, will no longer carry the OGL declaration.

So that third-party developers can use to release their own OpenQuest-based material, I will update the OpenQuest SRD, to replace the OGL with a Creative Commons license that gives the same rights that are currently enjoyed.

If you are a publisher using OpenQuest and have questions about this, don’t hesitate to contact me via email.

SimpleQuest VICTORY!

Well, that’s it my “last minute, put a bit of money in the bank” Kickstarter for SimpleQuest ended last night and truly exceeded my expectations, punching well above its height 🙂

I’m truly grateful to all the backers since it was a huge gamble on my part, and I expected everybody to be busy with Christmas. Thank you.

Now I have a little compact RPG book with a short line of supplements and adventures coming up.

SimpleQuest is Go!

This is a quick post about the ongoing SimpleQuest Kickstarter, which ends in just over a week on Monday, 12th December.

SimpleQuest Kickstarter Banner, art by Jon Hodgson

Progress so far

Funded the main goal, the rule book. In under one hour!

Funded a series of stretch goals that make up Darkvale, a quick Mythic Fantasy setting with a collection of three adventures. Also funded a stretch goal to make it available as a POD release to all backers and the initially announced pdf release.


Added some new add-ons to go alongside the current OpenQuest releases that have been available from the start of the campaign.

River of Heaven + To the Stars (£15 pdf/POD). It initially didn’t occur to me to put this OpenQuest-powered sci-fi game in the add-on’s pile, but someone asked if I could do an SQ Sci-fi game as a stretch goal, so then it made sense to offer this instead.

OpenQuest Classics (£10 pdf/POD). I had a small limited amount of Savage North, Crucible of Dragons and The Company (OQ modern warfare) in print in my stock cupboard. It all sold out very quickly. Then the emails came asking where they could get these items in pdf/pod. I was initially a meany and said no, that’s it they are gone out of print. But this morning, I had a change of heart, and you can now get them as a pdf/POD bundle for the bargain price of £10! (but that’s it) .


Just in case you think that OpenQuest has been thrown under the bus and SQ is its replacement, I did a big update on where I’m up to with all the OQ releases being worked on over at the OQ Kickstarter page.


Simple Quest Early Bird Backer Gifts

UPDATED 27/11/2022, to simplify Early Bird Backer gift claiming + give a bigger gift since I’m overwhelmed by the support that the Kickstarter has already attracted.

OK, a fun thing I’ve been doing for the last couple of Kickstarters is rewarding those who are back early with an exclusive pdf.

Anyone who backs in the first day and selects one of the two Early Bird Backer pledges (either PDF/POD or Signed and Sent) will get a free pdf copy of Demons of Dark Desire.

This is my quick take on Demonology for both SimpleQuest and OpenQuest, coming from the idea that Demons come from the dark, repressed emotions of those who summon them or the deities that dream them.

It covers how to create and summon demons, the types of demons, Demonologist magicians, Demon Champions who gain demon armour and weapons, and the Cultists who follow them.

In short, it will allow you to play in worlds plagued by demons and their cursed worshipers.

This is the lovely cover Paul Tomes came up with on one of his morning sketch sessions – a work in progress.

SimpleQuest cover by Jon Hodgson

SimpleQuest cover by Jon Hodgson

Holidays In Darkvale

Following on from yesterday’s announcement, I’m sure, as well as the book itself, you are interested in what’s going to be available as stretch goals. I’ve done a quick Mythic Fantasy setting called Dark Vale, where the ruling Sun Lord has fallen into the Underworld ruled by the Night Mistress, who has taken over his surface realm. The characters are from outside of Darkvale and have travelled there to work out what is happening and why their once bright northern neighbour is now permanently overcast with dark clouds. This will be split over four pdfs, which are nearly written and will be completed when they fund.

  1. Hidden Shrine. A quick Introductory adventure. It comprises a short encounter area, the Hidden Shrine of the title, wrapped up in the story of a Sun Priest who has disappeared from his temple in the town of Little Dithering.
  2. This Road Leads to Death. After the events of Hidden shrine, the characters head along the Victory Way to report what happened to the priest to the Merchant’s Guild in the town of Ridsdale. A body at the side of the road on the homestretch throws the characters into a sinister set of events.
  3. Death Comes To Ridsdale. A longer adventure where the characters reach Ridsdale and find that the forces of the Night Mistress have overrun it.
  4. The Darkvale Gazetteer. A quick setting guide with events/encounter tables and adventure seeds so you can continue adventuring there after completing the mini-saga of the three adventures previously funded.

In keeping with SimpleQuest, the stretch goal write-ups will be brief and to the point. The aim of all of the above is to quickly give you a memorable and playable setting that you can either use as a self-contained setting or drop into an existing campaign.

Here’s the work-in-progress map of the setting.

OpenQuest 3rd Edition

The OpenQuest Quickstart

OpenQuest Quickstart Cover by Jonny Gray

OpenQuest Quickstart Cover © Jonny Gray

OpenQuest Companion

The OpenQuest Companion, cover by Jon Hodgson

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 11 other subscribers.