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OSR Solo


OSR Solo rules

These rules are intended to allow you to play an OSR, in this case meaning 0D&D, B/X style games, without a Dungeon Master.

The game you will get using these rules will be a sandbox style adventure, you will not need to do any Dungeon Master [DM] style preparation although having a few stock NPCs or appropriate level would be helpful.

No DM?

The normal cycle of play is that the DM describes the scene and asks what do you do? The players describe their actions. The DM describes the effects of those actions and the cycle repeats.

In solo play there is just the single character and no DM. You start by imagining your character in the game setting and play them through all the social interactions, all the NPCs and events that would normally come up. At some point you will reach a point where you would normally ask your DM for more information. Are there any guards? Are there any ways out? What can you hear? At this point the solo rules come into play. You pitch your question in a Yes/No format. The solo rules will then return an answer to your question much like a Magic 8 Ball toy. It is then down to you and your improv. skills to decide what does this answer mean right now? Often the first thing that comes into your head is the answer to go with.

If you just got yes and no answers things would get boring quite quickly. These rules are designed to throw up twists and turns into your character’s story.

Other solo rules you may be interested in:

Capers Solo  Savage Worlds Solo Play Guide  Lone Star, Solo Roleplay using Mothership-RPG  Maze Rat, Solo Roleplay using Maze Rats  A Lonely Knave, Solo Roleplay using Knave  Solo roleplaying in an anime world  Solo Roleplaying compatible with GURPS and other d6 systems  Solo roleplaying using Castles and Crusades  Shadow of the Demon Lord solo rules  Grim and Perilous solo roleplay  303622-thumb140.png  285433-thumb140.jpg  284798-thumb140.jpg  239218-thumb140.jpg  285163-thumb140.jpg  280650-thumb140.jpg   309335-thumb140.jpg  282609-thumb140.jpg  282773-thumb140.jpg  286375-thumb140.png  309335-thumb140.jpg  282609-thumb140.jpg  282773-thumb140.jpg    282609-thumb140.jpg 

Complete Solo Game Systems

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Maze Rat, Solo Roleplay using Maze Rats  A Lonely Knave, Solo Roleplay using Knave  One-Page OSR Adventure  Part One of an adventure series  Solo roleplaying using Castles and Crusades  282609-thumb140.jpg  282773-thumb140.jpg 

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Discussions (3)
Customer avatar
Patrick D April 18, 2020 12:08 am UTC
A great, lean and compact guide to play my stacks of old RPGs!

Question for Peter RB: How do scenes fit into playing a published module? I was under the impression that your guide allowed to play published modules (in their own rules system) by following the storyline nearly verbatim, but scenes allow "...skipping a block of time..." and "...pick the scenes you want to play..." and "...pick the most exciting scenes..." That sounds more like creating one's own modules or sections (designing on the fly). While that's great for player and character agency, doesn't that distort the intent of the module? For example, if I'm playing (AD&D 1E) DL1 Dragons of Despair, and I don't feel like playing the encounter with Kisanth in Xak Tsaroth, then (according to the Scenes section) I don't have to. But this kinda throws the storyline into chaos (Yeah, I know, my OCD is showing a bit, eh?)

All in all, I love the simple approach of this guide. I've a mind to try it...See more
Customer avatar
Peter R April 18, 2020 2:12 pm UTC
Running a module solo is easy to do, but lengthy to explain.
Take a look at
Working on the principle that for every one person who asks, 99 people didn't, I have added the guidance to the main document. If you make sure you are getting the email updates from PPM, you will get an email telling you when the rules have been updated.
Customer avatar
Patrick D April 19, 2020 2:55 pm UTC
Thanks Peter, I understand a bit more now. I get your point. Still a bit different from my expectations (of playing a published module nearly verbatim), but I suspect it's a journey I'll have to experience myself and will likely end up with a method that comes close to yours. Quite true that everyone plays solo differently and in their own way.
Customer avatar
Peter R April 19, 2020 3:09 pm UTC
Some modules are more role-play heavy and some, like B2 are more dungeon crawling. I haven't played DL1 so I don't know it.
Regarding ASOIAF, I was talking to Green Ronin about solo rules dedicated to the game when they lost the rights. You can use these rules with any game, as you suggest, but as a licensed property I cannot sell these as compatible with that game.
Customer avatar
Joel C December 24, 2019 3:18 pm UTC
Excellent work! OSR solo has quickly became one of my favorite tools to use for solo adventuring
Customer avatar
Peter R December 24, 2019 5:18 pm UTC
Thank you, the feedback is greatly appreciated.
Customer avatar
Stephen Michael P July 11, 2019 7:51 pm UTC
Did you intend to put the whole text in the preview?
Customer avatar
Peter R July 11, 2019 8:15 pm UTC
Yes, I wanted anyone interested to actually see exactly what they are getting and the logic behind the design decisions I had made.
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This title was added to our catalog on July 11, 2019.