Good morning I've had a lot of time to think about one of the biggest problems with post apocalyptic gaming regardless of old school & retroclone system. I've been playing a lot of Gamma World 1st & 2nd edition lately. But I've used a mutated ton of systems from Mutant Future to Mutant Epoch as well as several of my own creations in addition to enhancing them with Boot Hill & AD&D 1st edition style system. So I know a bit about post apocalptyic gaming and it always seems to come down to location.
Sure the players have crawled through the ruins of Pitzburke in Gamma World, done with the ruins of California in Mutant Epoch, etc. It really becomes a pain in the ass to keep doing research to some location that they've never heard of for scavenging & ruin creation. The internet has made it that much harder. So the other night I asked my friend Dave Woodrum for Wreckside District: A Post Apocalypse Setting From Fishwife Games
So unlike other Fishwife Games in the past this one has a lot of artwork & some really well done professional layout so its easy on the eyes. The gaming potential here for all kinds of havoc at the the table. This is a an urban, post apocalyptic setting that can be used as part loot zone & part city state whole hog & dropped into a campaign.
Its system genric & neutral so its a simple matter to drag & drop this right into a campaign even an on going one with a blank spot on the map like I did with my recent Gamma World/Carcosa game.
A City Of Wasted Potential…
Aria stood at the edge of the wasted city and peered off towards its most functioning, but violent, part... Wreckside. The crumbling district was given its name years ago for the salvage yard and multiple garages and towing services that sprung up in the area. Now its name is more fitting for the condition of the district and its desperate inhabitants.
"So why are we are going back to that place again?" Aria questioned her companion, Darius, as she stared at the dimly glowing lights of the distant buildings, proof that at least some of Wreckside's inhabitants enjoyed the rare treat of functioning electricity.
Darius took a swig from a metal flask as he walked away from the acrid smolder of the dying barrel fire. "Supplies. Some special stuff. Electronics and some old notes on building things. I'll know it when I see it."
Aria hated it when Darius wouldn't tell her exactly what they were looking for. Still, though, Darius was renowned by the outskirt settlers as a master scavenger and for keeping his mouth shut about what his employers wanted him to recover. The young woman has learned a lot since Darius took her under his wing a year ago, and the scavenger has always managed to keep her alive in the process.
"So its another one of those jobs, eh? Typical orders from Garrett, don't let the new kid in on the details...", Aria remarked with an obvious bit of disgust in her voice.
"Hey, don't be knocking on Garrett," Darius replied as he checked the contents of his backpack and finished loading rounds into his pistol clip. "The old man is a bit of a creeper, yeah, but he pays well. Plus, we're going to get a pretty big bonus this time if we get back with exactly what he's hoping we'll find."
"Big bonus? What he hopes we'll find?"
"You'll see. Now follow me... quietly. I've been told there's a safer route into the district."
There are a couple of minor gripes with Wreckside District, the price measures out to about seven dollars and fifty cents for the pdf & I'd love to have seen a print option for these old eyes of mine. But trying to get a print pdf option for Drivethrrpg & Rpgnow is a huge pain in the arse. Artists also cost money & I was surprised at the amount of artwork in this title. Artists cost. Believe me I totally understand why. You've got a ton of NPC's, gangers, adventure locations, and more built into this. This means that this is a drag & drop product for a campaign. The other thing about Fish Wife Games is the fact that they're a company that seems to fade into the background of the OSR & table top hobby. This means that players are not aware of them as a potential resource for some really nasty post apocalyptic material.
Its a good resource for any of the PA games I mentioned & more. This could even be used for as Cyberpunk 2020 adventure location out in the badlands & no go zones.
The price is right up there with other pdfs so I would wait for a Drivethrurpg sale and possibly a code.
But is it worth your time & efforts? Hmm with the district's map that contains over two hundred numbered locations which are each provided individual descriptions and details. This can be a resource to base an entire campaign around.
Now in lots of other reviews I mentioned Domain level play. What the hell is that? Well, when a PC gets to certain level in OD&D such as ninth or higher it was assumed that if they were a fighter they'd build a stronghold, a wizard a tower, a cleric establish a temple or church, etc. This is basically the PC's carving out their own pound of flesh or land in a campaign setting. For some players this is a huge pain in the arse but for old schoolers this was part & parcel of old school campaign settings. This started with OD&D & carried on in B/X with the Companion & Master rules sets.
But what does this have to old school DYI Retro Future campaigns such as Gamma World & the Wreckside District? Actually everything. Many old school post apocalyptic games such as Gamma World all the way to Mutant Epoch have factions or Cryptic Alliances or whatever name such groups are under. In a nut shell this is an extension of kill the mutants, take their stuff and then rule their kingdoms! You & your party are looking for food, shelter, safety for you as well as your community by this blaster you rule! So essentially the Wreckside District provides one more filled in space to explore, exploit, & take over or does it?
Not so fast kids this is a large area of a loot, and scavenging zone. Here's where the horror just might start. If your forces are spread too thin then you just might crash and burn at the end of a laser shot.
So here's ten reasons why Wreckside Disttrict is a perfect product of opportunity for your old school post apocalyptic games:
This is a system neutral product so drag & drop it into your favorite old school or retroclone rpg systems.
Exploit and expand the NPC's, adventure hooks, etc. as you the DM see fit.
Situate & expand on some of the adventure locations for later post apocalyptic adventures.
Deal with the gangs that are in Wreckside in your own adventures to dove tail them back into bringing the PC's into the adventure location.
Cut, spin, and multilate the Wreckside District as you need to. You are not going to break this one.
Place artifacts and relics from your home campaign where you want them to hook the PC's into the campaign within Wreckside
Kill off a few major NPC's to provide adventure opportunities and for expansion of the PC's as possible rulers
Use Wreckside as a potential take over point for one of the campaign's major big bads
Port over your D&D style adventurers or cowboys for even more weirdness
Have your favorite Drive in film classic Atomic age monster threaten The Wreckside District.
Eric From The Sword & Stitchery blog
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