Dungeons of Thaarl

Back in 2019, I ran a megadungeon game, powered by GURPS (and later by Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game, itself powered by GURPS) named the Dungeons of Thaarl. It’s 2023 and by Easter, I’d like to get that idea back up and running as an Open Table game. The twist? I want to run it using a simple hack of GURPS that I unimaginatively named, “Simple GURPS”.

Simple GURPS arose from a conversation with GMShadow which airs in a few weeks as Season 12, Episode 5. Well, actually it’s been something we’ve been discussing on and off for more than a year but who’s quibbling?

What is Simple GURPS? It’s GURPS running the simplest emulation of the D&D BECMI dungeon game that we can come up with. That means it’s GURPS dialled down to the core rules and just a minimalist character design process, part inspired by the late great Mook and informed by GMShadow‘s experience teaching his kids GURPS.

For me, it’s a collaboration which I hope will prove useful in introducing school students to playing D&D-type games with the GURPS 3d6-based game engine. It’s also going to power my megadungeon project which I am determined to bring to an Open Table as soon as I can.

Thus, Thaarl will include simple character creation for GURPS leveraging “Wildcard skills as class” (thanks, Mook) and the GURPS Lite booklet for the basic rules. It’ll be blended with a methodology taken from the BECMI and B/X editions of D&D to run a dungeoncrawl within a megadungeon environment.

My plan is to post the choices and decisions I make for Thaarl here on the blog, plus talk about it sometime on the podcast. I imagine GMShadow will be posting his version of notes on his own blog too, plus talking about it on Shadow of the GM… but that’s just a guess. I’ll also be inviting interested Patrons to come and play, alongside a few of my non-Patron friends.

If that sounds like an interesting project, please feel free to drop me a comment below or look me up via email, Mastodon, or by calling in to the podcast.

Dungeons of Thaarl is being resurrected!

Game on!

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