A little bit of background on why there are no stats or dice.

Hi there game players, how are you all today? Good, I am fine thank you. I suppose you have come to find out something about this game *points finger at download button*? Very well, let me talk a bit about it.

Firstly let me just speak a while about why i made the game. I wanted this game to be a strongly narrative focused game; that is, I wanted to get away from stat based ttrpg games and focus more on the narrative. Now there is nothing wrong with stat based games with lots of stats and dice, its just that I had a lot of these and I wanted something that allowed me to focus more on the narrative.  

Early versions of The Adventurer did in fact have a small dice mechanic. To meet my want for a game that focussed as much on narrative as possible these dice mechanics became more and more stripped back and basic until they vanished all together. It felt like every time i had to stop the game and make dice rolls to decide outcome of a situation it pulled me out of the narrative writing experience and so the dice had to go.

Another thing that I wanted to do is make a game that nearly anyone could sit down and play without needing any specialist equipment. Believe it or not I have more friends that do not play rpg's than those that do. Hard to believe right? Here is the thing, none of those people own a set of polyhedral dice. A very early draft of the game used poly dice instead of cards and when I persuaded a few friends to have a look at the game none of them could play because of a lack of dice. This go me thinking about what most people have in their house. I ended up on the standard deck of playing cards. Nearly everyone has a deck of cards hidden somewhere and it seemed like a good choice for a physical component that would be nearly universally available. 

So there you have it, a fairly long and rambling post about why this game ended up with no stats or dice.

Have  you downloaded the game and played it? If you have let me know what you think.

Thanks for reading.


the_adventurer.pdf 591 kB
Jan 20, 2020

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I like the cards mechanic and general game concept a lot. After playing for a while I had a couple ideas.

First, there's really no need to separate the cards into 4 piles by suit for locations, events, etc. This seems like unnecessary prep work. I switched to drawing a card from a single pile, ignoring the suit, and looking it up on the appropriate table. When I'm supposed to be drawing a Location card it's a location, when I need an Event it's an event, and so forth.

This led me to think about using the Oracle and Aura decks as the normal card layout. After setting the scene as described, you then draw TWO cards on each turn, one from each deck. Having face cards in the Oracle deck and the rest in the Aura deck gives 30 possible pairs, so each table needs 30 entries instead of 13. This offers greater variety of situations. It also keeps the Oracle and Aura decks available for mid-game questions as per the rules. 



The combination of it being a journaling game without stats, along with using simple playing cards instead of RPG dice, are good choices if you ask me.

The lack of hard game stats means it's more versatile: good for one-shots, good for extended adventures, even good for backstories like my first playthrough. The lack of RPG dice goes hand-in-hand with that fact, and makes it more accessible with random generation. And real talk, I'd love to see more playing card decks be used for games in general. ;)


I know right. Im obsessed with playing cards at the moment so expect more games using them at some point.