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Heroes Against Darkness

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Imagine an ancient world torn apart by primal powers. A place where magic runs through all living things and erupts from the minds of powerful magi, where humans, elves, dwarves and orcs walk the same earth, where ancient gods fight side-by-side with mortals in an endless battle between order and chaos.

Adventure is everywhere. This is the world of Heroes Against Darkness.

Heroes Against Darkness is a free, fast, flexible, and fully-featured fantasy d20 RPG system. The game is quick to learn and play, while offering progressively greater options and flexibility as players develop their characters and explore the breadth and depth of the system.

For Players:
• A game that’s fast, fun and deep
• Streamlined rules system using unified mechanics
• Eleven character classes for all play-styles
• Three martial classes: Warrior, barbarian, berserker
• Two specialist classes: Rogue, hunter
• One hybrid class that combines magic and martial: Hospiter
• Five magi classes: Warlock, healer, canonate, necromancer, mystic
• Extensive character background and skill options
• Fast character building with plenty of depth
• Martial and specialist classes get meaningful combat choices through class-specific techniques that are based on trade-offs and the unique capabilities of each class
• Anima points-based magic system with five main schools focusing on each of the following; physical, healing, protection, necrotic and controlling

For GMs:
• A system that’s easy for the GM to set up and run
• Intuitive and clear rules
• Set up unique combat encounters in minutes
• Easy on-the-fly conversion of adventures from other systems
• A simple ability test system for non-combat challenges
• Support for long-term campaign play
• Extensive GM’s Guide to help run the game
• Huge bestiary with over 80 monsters
• A framework for quickly making custom monsters
• A comprehensive world-building guide
• Appendix of key tables for GMs

 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (7)
Discussions (10)
Customer avatar
Chad N June 01, 2022 5:49 am UTC
Love this game and the niche it fills taking bits from lots of other editions. Could anyone post how hybrid classes are supposed to work? Was that an afterthought, or something that never got finished? How are they to be done? Thanks.
Customer avatar
Justin H June 01, 2022 2:45 pm UTC
Hey Chad, with apologies, it's been a while for this aspect of Heroes Against Darkness.

The steps to create a hybrid class are:
1. The hybrid class has Class Health that's the average of the two combined classes (rounded down).
2. The hybrid class has weapon and armor proficiencies that are the average of the two combined (rounded down).
3. If one of the classes is a magi class, the character has access to the Common Skills and Spells list.
4. The character has a selection of powers and spells drawn from both of the classes, but not all of those powers and spells. This is the complicated part. I'll need to look back and work out how this worked! :-)
Customer avatar
Cord W August 11, 2021 1:15 am UTC

The character sheet download on the blogspot page is no longer working. Is it possible to get that file still? I am also curious about the customer character class document which is also a broken link now. If anyone has a copy or can direct me to another download location it would be great, thanks!
Customer avatar
Justin H August 11, 2021 12:28 pm UTC
Try these links:
Customer avatar
Cord W August 11, 2021 9:58 pm UTC
Awesome! Thanks Justin!
Any chance you are going to do any revisions or expansions to the system in the future? Or have you moved onto other things?
Customer avatar
William B May 27, 2021 6:00 pm UTC
If someone wanted to write an adventure for Heroes Against Darkness and publish it here, could they? I read the licensing section but I couldn't figure it out.
Customer avatar
Justin H May 28, 2021 2:42 pm UTC
Hey William, you can definitely make and sell a Heroes Against Darkness compatible adventure. You don't need my permission to do that.

If you want to use the Heroes Against Darkness logo on your adventure, then you need my permission. You can email me to discuss that at
Customer avatar
Roslyn J March 01, 2021 5:26 pm UTC
How is it determined which of the 45 rows of the Inspiration Board to use?
Customer avatar
Justin H March 05, 2021 2:13 am UTC
Hi Roslyn, you can either just read the board to trigger ideas, or you can roll a d6 and a d10 to give number between 0 and 60 (reroll results above 45), and then use those random elements in your adventure.
Customer avatar
Newbie F August 04, 2020 7:18 pm UTC
On page 7, It says this:

• Starting HP: Constitution + class health points

Did you mean "Constitution modifier"? Or do you add the literal score to the health points?

EDIT: Also, I understand the game doesn't have a skill system, but it gives out a lot of "skills" and I'm not sure what do with them. On one hand, homebrewing a skill mechanic shouldn't be hard, but on the other, I think I would've prefer if one is included in the game, even a very rudimentary one.
Customer avatar
Justin H August 05, 2020 10:36 am UTC
Yep, characters start with HP equal to their Constitution score + Class Health Points. For example a Warrior (7 CHP) with 15 Constitution will have 22 HP.

For the skill system; I really should have properly codified that skill system. I suggest that characters start with 5 or so skills (possibly from a shorter skill list as well!). When attempting an Ability Test, the character adds +5 if they have a relevant skill.

Here's a better/shorter list of skills:
• Athletics
• Intimidation
• Acrobatics
• Crafting
• Drive
• Ride
• Stealth
• Thievery
• Endurance
• Resist
• Deception
• Leadership
• Perform
• Persuasion
• Seduction
• Arcane
• Engineering
• History
• Investigation
• Knowledge
• Language
• Medicine
...See more
Customer avatar
Newbie F August 09, 2020 7:04 pm UTC
That clarifies things. I think adding a "score" to constitution; as in " Constitution score + class health points" would've made the idea more concrete. As for the skill system, it's an elegant way of doing it for sure, and it's actually what I planned to use, but +3 instead of +5. My only gripe being - ability tests doesn't have anything for jumping, which is weird since swimming and climbing is in there. In addition, I can't seem to find any gameplay references for Hybrid (except for Hospiter) and Specialists classes. Are we suppose to just wing this?

Anyway, thank you for the quick reply and for the improved skill lists. I think the current one is a bit overwhelming without being mechanically relevant.
Customer avatar
Sebastian A November 26, 2019 11:16 pm UTC
Is this game compatible with OSR modules?
Customer avatar
Daniel R December 17, 2018 3:45 am UTC
Please include an extra copy of the rules minus the parchment color in your next edition.
I'd like to print this at home without using up unnecessary toner.

I'm very excited to try this rule set!
Customer avatar
Justin H December 18, 2018 8:49 am UTC
So I don't know what happened here, but this product lost a bunch of files, including the printer-friendly version. So I have re-added them!
Customer avatar
Simon E November 25, 2018 11:14 pm UTC
I have to know: why is the class called Hospiter rather than Hospitalier, which seems to be what you are aiming for?
Customer avatar
Justin H November 25, 2018 11:17 pm UTC
Hahaha. Such a good question. I figured that Hospitalier was hard to say, so I shortened to Hospiter.
Customer avatar
Geoffrey W June 12, 2016 5:07 am UTC
So, I notice the little note about "Hybrid classes" in the class section. But there aren't any guidelines for them at all? I mean, it says they get powers more slowly but there are no rules for it at all?

Are you just supposed to homebrew it?
Customer avatar
Brian R June 07, 2015 3:52 am UTC
In the PDF verison , the bookmarks don't seem to work.
Customer avatar
Justin H June 07, 2015 11:38 am UTC
Hi Brian, I just checked the files and 'purchased' and downloaded the PDF from DriveThruRPG and the bookmarks are working fine for me in Foxit Reader. Any more information about the problem?
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73.49 MB
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File Last Updated:
December 18, 2018
This title was added to our catalog on October 31, 2012.